Reviews


REVIEW BY Ashia   

Crooked Kingdom

by Leigh Bardugo
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"Must read!"

I've been waiting anxiously for this book since last year, and I have to say it didn't disappoint!

There's more of that sneaky, cunning deception upon deception as engineered by Kaz (or should I say the author?), and I enjoyed being twisted and turned, my mind having to scramble to realize that a different facet of the situation is now being presented. There's also more of that surprising humor as evidenced by the things Nina and Kaz said, and I find myself laughing out loud on more than one occasion. Here is also where we see each person even clearer, how their pasts shaped them to become what we read about on the page, for example, Kaz and Inej yearning for the other so deeply, yet so traumatized by having another person touch them intimately. I like how the author made them take baby steps toward healing, because such trauma would surely take time and love to heal.

Also, the author made me cry on more than one occasion, but none so much than chapters 39 and 40, so maybe you'd want to have tissues ready. (I won't spoil it for you.) I don't know why things happened the way they did--it was so out of the blue and so...illogical (I would say), but hate is not logical, is it? And perhaps the author is illustrating how our actions would ricochet to affect us later on. Cause and effect. Karma? Maybe, maybe not.

I love the cameo roles played by the Ravkan delegation, although I didn't know them, having never read The Grisha Trilogy, and though I know this is a duology, I hope there would be more stories about them--Kaz, Inej, Nina, everyone. I mean, there's a sort of closure by the end of 500 or so pages, but it feels like it's the beginning of something else, and I wouldn't mind being there for the journey.

Compelling and page-turning, this is a must read for those who've read the previous book, Six of Crows, and fans of The Grisha Trilogy. It's a long story (see above 500 or so pages), but there's never a dull moment. While you can definitely start with this book, but the adventure began in Six of Crows, so please do yourself a favor and start there.

REVIEW BY L. R. W. Lee   

The Girl of Fire and Thorns

by Rae Carson
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"How do we really know what to believe? "

I have to say I don’t usually like reads that focus on a religious belief system, but I’m glad I stayed the course because this is a well written series.

In the first book of the trilogy, The Girl of Fire and Thorns, we meet Elisa, second in line to the throne, and in her mind, second in everything–she’s overweight, politically inept and expendable, therefore she’s married off to a foreign magistrate to strengthen the bonds of peace with that land.

What Elisa doesn’t fully appreciate, however, is the godstone that appeared in her navel as an infant on her naming day, something that occurs only every 100 years. She’s confused and frustrated by what it means for her and her life and she struggles to invent an identity for herself that satisfies her.

But other nations have plans for her as the Bearer and they kidnap her. Through her ordeal trekking through barren dessert, the soft girl begins to toughen up and question what she has always been taught. The questioning is where Carson’s brilliance shines, for we all question what we believe from time to time and that questioning usually changes us…at times significantly.

I won’t offer any spoilers but suffice it to say, if you love a good mystery that changes and grows the main protagonist, you’ll love this first book in the series.

REVIEW BY Shakera Blakney   

The Fading Dusk

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"Perfection"

The Fading Dusk was truly a great story! It has everything! There's espionage, love, humor, lies and murder! Just when you think a street magician is just an ordinary guy... slight of hand, making a coin disappear, well, those days are gone! Meet Bantheir. On the surface, he's your average street magician just trying to make a living, but if you dig a bit deeper... he's hiding a deep dark secret! His secret is the ultimate betrayal... especially to Irina, his assistant and "adopted" daughter. Bantheir's betrayal lands Irina in prison with some unlikely friends, like the charming and attractive Captain Leonid. He too, is not everything he seems. With all the secrets going on, who do you trust?

For me, this was quite the story, it begged me to use my imagination! The Fading Dusk is extremely well written, had me sitting on the edge of my seat and left me wanting more. It was nice to see Irina and Leonid drop their guards and bond. While romance wasn't a big component to the story, it did help progress the story along. Irina started off meek and shy, but by the end she blossomed! I enjoyed this story and look forward to book 2 of the series!

REVIEW BY Ashia   

The Secret of a Heart Note

by Stacey Lee
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"Magical!"

I'm falling in love with Stacy Lee's writing! How come I never heard of this author before? Her writing is lyrical and expressive, describing things in a different, refreshing manner. I like the way her descriptions set off vivid images in my head. Sadly, I can only give a few examples or this review would go on too long:

"Twilight is my favorite time of day. All shimmery in the ceiling, violet on the carpet. The night bloomers are rolling up their sleeves to do their magic."

and

"I cry out as another wave yanks the board from my one-armed grip. Then the water swells over my head, cutting off sound and holding me in place. I kick my body upward, but the sea squats on me like a twenty-ton giant."

Ever think of drowning as having the sea squatting on you? Yet, it seems to fit.

Another thing I love about this book is how scent is like another character here. Mim is an aromateur, and scent permeates almost every thought she has, which is truly great for setting the atmosphere. And very realistic. It really brought her character to life. Since this is all new to me, I had great fun reading about all the different scents and how each emotion smells like to Mim. I don't know if the author invented this or not, but if not, I have to say the book is well researched.

I also love Mim, who has a strong sense of self and doesn't let the students' reactions to her affect her desire to go to school and experience life as a normal teenager. Without my knowing, she burrowed her way into my heart and I wanted to cry and panic with her when she realized she was losing her nose. (Aromateurs lost their sense of smell when they fall in love.) I thought her ambivalence over her joy at being in love with Court and at losing her nose were very realistic. Though she was barely fifteen, she's very mature for her age, and her thoughts and dialogue reflect that.

I only have one complaint. Toward the end when Court went to Mim's place with bricks, their interaction left me dissatisfied. I mean, sure, I knew they would end up together, but how the situation went left me hanging. I'm not looking for declarations of love but a confirmation that she felt something for him said to him would've been nice.

Overall, this is a must read. Immerse yourself in this magical tale. You won't regret it.

REVIEW BY Ashia   

French Fries with a Side of Guys

by Rebekah L. Purdy
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"Must read!"

I should read the blurb more carefully next time. The fault is totally mine, that I didn't realize the heroine is just fourteen, but I have to say she acted and thought her age, which is good in terms of characterization. I don't have anything against a character's age; it's just that she's too immature for my reading tastes.

In any case, I write this review as objectively as I can. First, I love the family dynamics displayed here. I love that Payton being the baby sister, her brothers are protective of her and did all they can to protect, support and help her. Every girl should have such older brothers.

Second, the heroine a better football player/quarterback than a guy? Bring it on! I love that Payton was true to herself and played her best, even if it's against her crush. She also stood up for herself against bullies (cheerleader Kibby Carlton). And though I'm not a football fan, I like reading about Payton's plays.

The romance here is understated. There's more about Payton's struggles to be accepted as a female football player by her peers, her friendships and navigating the romance landscape than romantic scenes. At the end of the book, she ends up with one of the guys, and I wish there were more scenes of the two of them together. I mean, I don't know anything about the guy except the most basic facts, like his looks, his year in school, etc. I doubt if Payton knew more either. In any case, I think romance is not the focal point of this story, despite the title. It's more of Payton's experiences in her freshman year in high school.

I believe the right age group of teens would enjoy this very much. Payton is also a good role model, especially for girls who are struggling to make it in this still-much-male-dominated world. A must read for tweens and younger teens.

REVIEW BY Ashia   

How to Keep a Boy from Kissing You

by Tara Eglington
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"Delightful"

HOW TO KEEP A BOY FROM KISSING is a fun, lighthearted romp with positive messages and raised up important issues that face girls and women today.

I like the positive message this book is sending out to tweens/teens. There are books that show you the consequences of certain actions and how the hero/heroine lives them afterwards. But this book doesn't let the heroine get that far; instead, she already possesses strong ideas/principles that guide her actions, thus reinforcing positive values and actions, which I find is lacking in many books (at least the ones I've read) today. For example, Aurora places much importance on her first kiss (this can be stretched to include all the firsts). She's very particular on who should receive it--that it should be someone whom she cares for, someone who's worthy of it.

She also has a "Find a Prince (TM) Program" which is about "girls valuing ourselves and saying no to guys who use or abuse us...It's about realizing we deserve better." I think that's a very powerful realization that girls can make: that we deserve better.

And her search for a Prince? It's actually an acronym for a a guy who has Principles, Recognizes your worth, possesses Integrity, Never doubts that you're the only one for him, is Constant, and possesses Endurance. She doesn't think that "any girl should comprise when it comes to how a guy treats her."

But this is no damsel in distress, waiting for her Prince to come. No, she goes to find him, and also does her best to help her best friends find theirs. All in all, I find I quite like Aurora.

The first half (or more) of the book is a fun, light-hearted romp, especially at the start (like when the girls performed the Glide-by), which made me fear that this book would become silly and shallow, as some of the antics that the students get into are quite ridiculous. If I were Mr. Peterman, I think I'd have popped some veins ages ago! But I think also that it serves as a contrast to some serious issues being raised, like that of gender equality and how far women have come today (though we still have some ways to go).

The last 25% to 30% of the story is more weighted down with sadness, frustration, disappointments, and a lot of things kind of snowballed here, though I don't think it's rushed. And the ending--the Big Reveal--is so romantic!

The friendship dynamic among Aurora and her friends (Cassie, Jelena, Sara and Lindsey) is interesting to read. HOW TO KEEP A BOY FROM KISSING YOU is an enjoyable read that will delight tweens/teens who enjoy contemporary romances.

REVIEW BY Merissa   

The Passage, a Dance, & a Little White Dress

by Kristin D. Van Risseghem
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"Brilliant"

The Passage, a Dance, and a Little White Dress is the second book in the Enlighten series, and starts the day after the climax of book one.

Zoe is trying to pretend that everything is normal whilst she struggles to deal with the new world that she is part of. Part of what helps to keep her stable is her relationship with Shay. This receives a knock though, when Shay is taken and no one knows where he is. At the same time, Zoe gets a new neighbour (Aiden), who has a striking resemblance to Shay that apparently no one apart from Zoe sees. This, plus his behaviour, would be ringing alarm bells with me, but Zoe seems not to notice anything too bad, apart from it being "a bit off".

This book was an amazing follow up to the first story. We learn more about the various types of Enlightens, Naturals, etc. It is very well written, with a smooth pace building up the ending, and no editing or grammatical errors to disrupt the reading flow. With a cliff-hanger ending that will have your jaw dropping, this book is both a brilliant follow up to book 1, whilst also leading you perfectly into book 2. Definitely recommended by me.

REVIEW BY Tonyalee   

A Distant Voice

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"Emotional Story"

Having not heard much about A Distant Voice before requesting, I had no idea what to expect. I had a few assumptions, sure, but nothing concrete. And honestly, I wasn't expecting it to be quite so emotional but it was.

Violet was a hard character to like at first - but, considering all that she is going through, you understand why she has such a thick wall built around her and doesn't want to let anyone in. She comes off rude and with a standoffish personality, even downright mean at times, but we as the reader don't know exactly the full scope of Violet's pain; we slowly learn about during the course of the novel. It's an emotional journey, for sure.

While their romance plays a large part with character growth, I never felt it overwhelmed the plot or Violet's journey, and I appreciated that. Carter was an amazing love interest and character. He too is battling some personal demons of his own.

The story has a heavy focus on mental illness and alcohol abuse, and it's well done. It's not taken lightly, and as someone with deep knowledge of both, I felt Violet's voice was authentic to the situation(s) at hand.

All in all, I really enjoyed it. The ending left on a bittersweet note, kind of open ended but I like that. If you are looking for a great YA coming of age story, then I highly recommend picking up A Distant Voice.

REVIEW BY Shakera Blakney   

Starr Fall

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"I need the second book pronto!"

Abandon whatever you are doing and read this book! Imagine being an exemplary student there ever was. You have your life planned out to the minute. You take a placement test for what you assume is a summer internship, only to find out it's a secret organization and they want you to be an assassin. If you can imagine this, you've just met Starr! Starr shows you how much your life can change if just let go a bit! She would make a kick ass assassin... if only she wanted to be one! To help her escape from this is Christian. I need more Christian in my life! Tall, dark, handsome and mysterious! While he seems like he's uptight in the beginning, when he comes to the rescue of Starr you really get to see him. He's sweet, sensitive, understanding, and above all an absolute gentleman.

This book is targeted for a much younger audience than me (my age is not important... hahaha), but I truly enjoyed it. It's such a quick paced book. you could easily read five or six chapters without realizing how much time has passed! The ending left me wanting more! I NEED TO KNOW WHAT HAPPENS NEXT! Book 2 of this series needs to come to come out tomorrow!

REVIEW BY Terrill Rosado   

"4.5 STARS!!"

Note: This story doesn't necessarily end on a cliffhanger, but does end without closure to certain aspects within the main characters' life. The next two books in the series are already released.

Put it Out There is written from Derian's POV. She is returning to Britannia Beach a year after her father's car accident and subsequent death to stay with her grandfather at the inn he runs. This is where she spent most of her childhood years along with one of her best friends and boy next door, Trevor.

At first, the story read like a day-to-day diary of her life and relationships which I was concerned that I wouldn't care for. I needn't have worried, though, because as the number of acquaintances and friends were introduced, I was becoming more and more invested in her life and situational outcomes. The main one being her relationship with Trevor. Although frustrating at times, I have to say I was most invested in their story and longed for a HEA between the two. I loved how the author wrote their friendship and the possibility of more. They definitely had the most swoon-worthy moments. Two additional love interests are thrown into the mix to further complicate and confuse Derian's teen-addled mind - Steven, a familiar friend and the mysterious new boy, Mason. There are a couple of suspicious hints that point to a bigger story when it comes to Mason's presence in Derian's life. It definitely had my curiosity piqued. I also can't neglect her best girlfriend, Sophie, as she was often the comic relief with her tough and sassy exterior.

All of these intersecting relationships make for a consuming read that once I started, I couldn't stop reading until the ending forced me to. I most assuredly will be continuing on in this series. One aspect of this story that I kind of glossed over was Derian's premonition gift. Although significant to Derian's character, its contribution to the overall story is not any more significant than any other facet to the book. It will be interesting to see if it plays a bigger role in future books, because I kind of prefer to see it as just like any other quirk to her character.

Fun fact - the series takes place in BC, Canada and I live 5 minutes from the BC border in Washington State, so I was familiar with the locations mentioned around Vancouver. I also lived in Quebec, Canada for five years, which made it fun to read some of the familiar Canadian colloquialisms that I haven't used or heard for years.

REVIEW BY L. R. W. Lee   

Earth's End

by Elise Kova
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"This book touched my emotions in so many ways! "

A woman awoken in air, a soldier forged by fire, a weapon risen from blood.

Vhalla Yarl has made it to the warfront in the North. Forged by blood and fire, she has steeled her heart for the final battle of the Solaris Empire’s conquest. The choices before Vhalla are no longer servitude or freedom, they are servitude or death. The stakes have never been higher as the Emperor maintains his iron grip on her fate, holding everything Vhalla still has left to lose in the balance.

WHAT I THOUGHT (WARNING THERE ARE SPOILERS!): Elise Kova is proving to be a master storyteller! I wanted to believe in the fairy tale relationship of Vhalla and Aldrick. I longed to. At the beginning of the book the narrative picks up resolving the angst left at the end of Fire Falling where we didn’t know if Prince Aldrick perished in his fall or not. I sweated three long months refusing to believe he could have died. And I was right- woohoot!! This discovery shortly into book three eased my heart’s trepidation and I was off on another adventure, happy as a lark.

Vhalla and Aldrick grow much closer and even intimate during the middle of the book, causing my skin to tingle and sending my heart a thumpin’ . I saw the trust they shared and rejoiced for them – could life get any better for the pair??? Yet Kova couldn’t let us live in a fantasy realm, for there is a deeper narrative to be told and she began sprinkling hints that Vhalla was glossing over Aldrick’s faults…starting with his drinking. I will admit I, too, glossed over the prince’s faults in my hunger to view him as Prince Charming.

But even after Vhalla fulfills her vow to the Emperor, gaining the respect of everyone in camp in the process, things come to a head. Oh how I loathed the power-hungry dictator. Very few authors have created villians that get under my skin like this man, but when the emperor asserts himself, we are clear that he controls everything and the lives of everyone within his domain–I cringed. We in America take our freedom SOOO for granted–I was not made to live in subjugation to anyone but the Law, but everyone in the Solaris empire knows a very different truth. Kova did a brilliant job of revealing more of this antagonist throughout the book.

And then the end, the last third of the book, arrived. The first time I read it I kept saying “No! No! This can’t be happening!” I wanted to plug my ears and squeeze my eyes tight and make the upheaval stop! I mourned what unfolded and found myself devastated and nearly screaming out in anguish alongside Aldrick.

So I read the book a second time after a day of decompressing…yes it was that good…and found more perspective as I was less emotionally charged. Amidst the chaos, Kova shows us that Vhalla and Aldrick’s relationship is toxic for they are the world of the other and neither has formed a foundation upon which to build something lasting…yet. Vhalla comes to this realization first and it is only her courage that plunges the pair into a time of learning and personal growth.

This end to the book is very different to the panic from book two. It is a sober recognition that we must each become our own person before we can truly love another. While I resisted “going here,” I’m thrilled Kova is leading the way and I’m anxious to see what the pair learn about themselves in book four.

REVIEW BY Shakera Blakney   

Josie's Coat

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"Quick lesson about how Karma works"

Josie's Coat was a quick and easy read with nice and simple writing. It's a nice story of how karma works. It was easy to follow along and a great start to something bigger. I would like to see where this goes.

REVIEW BY Laura Hernandez   

Traitors' Gate

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"Worth Reading"

What a fantastic novella! A well rounded read full of mystery, intrigue, romance and horror as we encounter zombies and vampires and even an enchanter. Characters are strong and the world building pulled me into the novella. I now must read book one!!

REVIEW BY Shakera Blakney   

Key of Mystery

by K. H. Mezek
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"Interesting"

The Key of Mystery is an interesting book, if you can make it past the first half. The pacing of the first half of the story was extremely slow. I was tempted to not finish the story, but midway through it picked up. It picked up so much, it felt a bit rushed, but that is fine considering the first half of the story.

The plot was interesting, but I couldn't connect to the characters. Sera was a bit whiny at times. Peter could have been fleshed out a bit more. I didn't see any romance between them.

The story overall was okay but if you can power through the first half, you may enjoy it.

REVIEW BY Laura Hernandez   

Devil's Playground

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"Everyone Should Read This"

The author immersed me alongside Elizabeth and so I found myself to be an integral part of this well written paranormal story. Full of action, magic and dangers that pull you in and keep you enthralled until the end. Everyone should read this historical fantasy and be prepared for the journey!!

REVIEW BY Ashia   

A Mortal Song

by Megan Crewe
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"Definite must read!"

A MORTAL SONG is a magical young adult story that is all the more compelling for its humanity.

Sora is a kami, one of the elemental spirits that lived in Mt. Fuji. On her seventeenth birthday, a demon and his cohorts attacked and subjugate the mountain, and she and her loyal guard Takeo were given a quest that would help save the mountain. She then found out that she was in fact, human, and she and the real kami princess were exchanged at birth so that the princess's life could be preserved for such a time as this, when the princess was prophesied to be the savior of the mountain.

Sora was understandably bitter, because it was as though her life was nothing, because she was meant to be a decoy to keep the princess safe. Yet, we see the dichotomy in her character, because even as she felt betrayed, yet, she loved the mountain enough to set aside her own feelings and focused on doing all she can to save it and the kami she had come to love all these years. I love that Sora is a complex, multi-faceted character; she becomes more interesting, humanly flawed and yet also strong, but maybe strong in a different manner than she had thought. I love that she was able to appreciate her own humanity in time, and need I say how fitting the resolution to the situation was?

Both Sora and Chiyo, the kami princess, have their own strengths and weaknesses, and yet, they complement one another. Both girls are the heroes in this story, and for once, I like seeing that the boys were mere sidekicks, albeit important sidekicks, in a fantasy novel.

Author Megan Crewe brought a fresh new idea into the young adult fantasy genre, and I was almost sad when I reached the end. A MORTAL SONG is a fascinating, page-turning read that nobody should read. A definite must read!

REVIEW BY Ashia   

The Distance from A to Z

by Natalie Blitt
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"Adorable, heartwarming, a keeper!"

THE DISTANCE FROM A TO Z is an adorable, heartwarming romance. I love the way they speak French to each other throughout the book. Though it's part of their French class, speaking French came to have other, more significant meanings for them. Yet, don't be deterred by all the French! Some phrases will be familiar (even I know what bonjour means!), but the author translates almost immediately. And hey, you might learn some words, too!

I thought Abby and Zeke were cute together, and their behavior were realistic and believable, and when Abby started to have feelings for him, their scenes became fraught with the will-he, won't-he type of vibe. I love that scene when they faced off against each other in the baseball trivia game; I thought the manner by which they get to kiss (first kiss!!) was awfully cute and thrilling. However, one thing I still don't understand, even after the Big Reveal that I didn't see coming, was all those phone calls Zeke would get. I mean, what's there to talk about that he would need to get so many calls?

While the main characters were done awfully well, I can say much the same for the secondary character--Alice, who is Abby's roommate and friend. She has her own personality and set of problems, she undergoes her own arc throughout the book and is not just there as a prop for Abby (though I have nothing against friends who serve as props/support for the main character. Not everyone is riddled with problems). Still, because of that, she is someone who the reader will surely remember. And I hope we get Alice's book one day where she will go on to overcome her problems. She is one brave girl.

I can't wait to read more from Natalie Blitt! THE DISTANCE FROM A TO Z is a keeper!

REVIEW BY L. R. W. Lee   

Rite of Rejection

by Sarah Negovetich
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"Amazing writing. Evolving characters. Engaging plot twists. "

For the record, this is a dystopian novel. And having Hunger Games and Divergent play big for so long, I wasn’t sure if I really wanted to invest in another future society that’s gone to pot. But since the author was so nice and gave me the book, I plunged in. And I’m glad I did:)

First, I loved the premise of the book–a future society uses a machine to predict a person’s tendencies while still a teen, to weed out people who will harm the society in the future. I’d not seen such an idea explored and it’s pretty scary if you really think about it.

There were five primary characters–Rebecca, Eric, Elizabeth, Daniel, and Molly. While I felt Molly wasn’t well developed, the author did a good job at evolving the others, particularly the main protagonist, Rebecca, from a naive sixteen-year-old who wouldn’t think of hurting a flea, into a character resolved to sacrifice herself in order to change society. That’s quite a span to bridge but I thought Ms. Negovetich did it in a way that was believable, even including Becca’s first true love, with all the challenges that holds, in the process.

That said, the plot felt too predictable for the first half of the book. Kids are sent to the PIT (a prison-like facility) because a machine predicts they will become criminals in the future. Enter sixteen-year-old Rebecca who, despite how unlikely it seems, gets sent to PIT. Of course the first half of the book is about how she and her compatriots try to break out…which is of course foiled.

IMO the book shines after this, and Ms. Negovetich’s brilliance is revealed for she takes Rebecca and her adoptive family of other teenage PIT convicts (Elizabeth and Daniel) and plants for them the opportunity to make a statement about what society outside the PIT walls doesn’t know. In so doing, Rebecca is set up as the agent of change.

One complaint I had was the plot shift with this person (sorry, no spoilers) betraying the group seemed a bit sudden and I felt like it came out of the blue without enough lead in to make the moment more gripping. I feel like if the author had developed that a bit more, I would have felt personally betrayed and livid at the person. But I came away from it as more of a fact that Rebecca and friends must deal with but not feeling it myself–it was more a surprise in an academic sense than experientially.

Overall, this was a great first novel by a debut author! If I could have had such a strong start…LOL! Look for Ms. Negovetich to refine her storytelling and become a force. If you like dystopian with a hint of romance thrown in, I think you’ll enjoy Rite of Rejection.

REVIEW BY Zil   

Rise

by Jennifer Anne Davis
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"A story which justifies the cover!"

The story is set in old times when a village is ruled by a king. The King who has ruled the village of Nelebek for over a century is cruel and inhuman, and who uses dark magic and kills without mercy. The soldats (soldiers) of the king are just as cruel, picking people off the streets and killing them ruthlessly in search of the last elusive Krigar. The twelve Krigars who have been predicted to bind their magic together and put an end to the evil King's reign by killing him, eleven of them which are already captured by the King.
Sixteen-year-old Kaia lives with her ill father, surviving by practicing combat and keeping her head down. All of which is ruined when by turn of unexpected events she finds out that she is the last Krigar and the only female one at that. Now, what should Kaia do? Should she trust the handsome assassin who just saved her or should she try to survive on her own?

This isn't a fast paced story; it is a heavy one with vivid descriptions which will make you shudder, make you angry but wouldn't let you stop. The best thing about the story is that it perfectly justifies the cover, if you get what I mean, and also how strong as well as emphatic Kaia is. She won't take crap from anyone and isn't afraid to kick some ass. Love a killer heroine who may end up falling for the enemy? Well then, you just found your story ;)

REVIEW BY Ashia   

P.S. I Like You

by Kasie West
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"Sweet and fun, a keeper!"

P.S. I LIKE YOU is a fun and light read, yet it gives me all the feels and magic of first love! I love this book and I wish it didn't have to end!

Lily Abbott was bored in Chemistry class and somehow she wrote some lyrics on the desk. To her surprise, someone answered the next day! Thus begins a surprising friendship based on their love of music. She finds herself looking forward to their daily exchanges, but when she finds out that her pen pal is none other than the boy she loathes (I don't think this is a spoiler, as it's pretty obvious who her pen pal would be), how can she reconcile the two?

Lily is a great heroine. She's strong and doesn't feel the need to conform to the other kids in school. How many of us were that way back in the days? What I love about her is her strong sense of family; she was so patient with her sister and brothers, even as they drive her crazy or take time away from the thing she loved--songwriting. Her family is crazy and they may not be rich, but the love and affection among them is obvious and heartwarming.

Lily and the guy are adorable! I love their letters--I look forward to them, and almost want to skip stuff just to get to them. They bonded over music and their confidences of things that are bothering them. I think they're able to share really personal things because of the anonymity. Actually, I thought they have this deep connection between them (at least the author made me believe this!) due to their bonding, and thought how wonderful it was for them to find their soul mate that way! Later, when their identities were revealed, they were (dare I say it?) adorable together--their interaction, their dialogue, etc. Especially when Lily finally got the song she was writing for the competition together. That scene was so touching and made my heart ache in a good way.

P.S. I LIKE YOU is recommended for tweens and teens (and adults who are young at heart) who love reading a sweet and fun romance. This book is definitely going on my keeper shelf and I definitely see myself re-reading this in the future!

The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight
Who would have guessed that four minutes could change everything?

Today should be one of the worst days of seventeen-year-old Hadley Sullivan's life. Having missed her flight, she's stuck at JFK airport and late to her father's second wedding, which is taking place in London and involves a soon-to-be stepmother Hadley's never even met. Then she meets the perfect boy in the airport's cramped waiting area. His name is Oliver, he's British, and he's sitting in her row.

A long night on the plane passes in the blink of an eye, and Hadley and Oliver lose track of each other in the airport chaos upon arrival. Can fate intervene to bring them together once more?

Quirks of timing play out in this romantic and cinematic novel about family connections, second chances, and first loves. Set over a twenty-four-hour-period, Hadley and Oliver's story will make you believe that true love finds you when you're least expecting it.

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?

Water Weaver
The young maiden, Marella, was born to the island of Wraidd Elfennol, a place balanced by the four elements of nature – Earth, Air, Fire and Water. The essence of each element contained in sacred artefacts ensuring the balance of life.

Every year, the community from across the island gather for the Summer Solstice. It is at this celebration the Lords and Ladies of Wraidd Elfennol make an astounding announcement. The sacred artefacts are missing. They then proclaim that four individuals, along with their animal Life Partners, will be selected to restore the balance.

Marella and her otter, Nixie, are chosen because of their link to the element of Water and along with her, three others – each in-tune with a different element.

Together they embark on a quest to either find the missing artefacts or somehow create new ones. As the world around them changes, danger lurks with every challenge the group face. They must hurry as the elements need to be restored before a year and a day have passed.

Failure is not an option or the world as they know it will cease to exist.

Supermassive
Eighteen-year-old Ing is torn apart by two conflicting emotions: his numbing grief for his dead mother and his enduring love for a boy named Ellis. Four years ago, while visiting his grandmother in a remote part of Norway, his mother died the same day he kissed Ellis, his summer friend. Convinced that moving to Norway will solve his issues, Ing faces his first setback when he can’t bear to talk about his mother or go anywhere near the river where she drowned. The second blow comes when he meets Ellis at school and Ellis acts like nothing happened between them.

Ing resolves to rekindle their friendship, but his infatuation only grows as he gets to know the stunning and matured Ellis. When heart-shattering secrets surface, Ing’s resolve to bare his soul to Ellis starts to unravel. Forced to face his mother's death, he second-guesses his decision to move. His growing closeness with Ellis also frightens him, because if Ellis rejects him, he'll have no one left to love. Ing must decide what losses he is willing to endure and what chances to take in order to gain resolution.

Full Fusion (Book 1 of The Fusion Series)
Eighteen-year-old Roxie Sebastian lives a charmed life, and she knows it. Too bad she can’t feel it. All her life, she’s felt disconnected from the world around her. Everything changes just before graduation, when she’s drawn to an eerie, brilliant light—which narrowly misses her as it blows up her friend Lincoln’s car. Clearly someone’s after Roxie, and finally Lincoln tells her the truth: He and Roxie are angels, beings from another dimension, and that light is her soul, separated from her human body in a traumatic birth.

Once a skeptical Roxie rules out the other possibilities—like Lincoln created this delusion to escape his abusive father—she accepts her gut-deep knowledge of the truth. But someone has been screwing with her light, using it to commit crimes, and their actions are about to cause irreparable damage to two worlds: the one she lives in, and the one she can’t remember.

Aided by her best friend Jordan, her boyfriend Tucker, and Lincoln, Roxie tracks down the criminal and uncovers many more secrets not only of her past, but of the history of their race on Earth. And then Roxie faces a horrible dilemma—the only way she can stop them from ripping apart both worlds is to fuse with her light…which could be tainted by the evil with which it was used.

The Girl of Fire and Thorns
Once a century, one person is chosen for greatness. Elisa is the chosen one. But she is also the younger of two princesses. The one who has never done anything remarkable, and can’t see how she ever will.

Now, on her sixteenth birthday, she has become the secret wife of a handsome and worldly king–a king whose country is in turmoil. A king who needs her to be the chosen one, not a failure of a princess.

And he’s not the only one who seeks her. Savage enemies, seething with dark magic, are hunting her. A daring, determined revolutionary thinks she could be his people’s savior, and he looks at her in a way that no man has ever looked at her before. Soon it is not just her life, but her very heart that is at stake.

Elisa could be everything to those who need her most. If the prophecy is fulfilled. If she finds the power deep within herself. If she doesn’t die young. Most of the chosen do.

Love, Life and the List
What do you do when you’ve fallen for your best friend? Funny and romantic, this effervescent story about family, friendship, and finding yourself is perfect for fans of Sarah Dessen and Jenny Han.

Seventeen-year-old Abby Turner’s summer isn’t going the way she’d planned. She has a not-so-secret but definitely unrequited crush on her best friend, Cooper. She hasn’t been able to manage her mother’s growing issues with anxiety. And now she’s been rejected from an art show because her work “has no heart.” So when she gets another opportunity to show her paintings, Abby isn’t going to take any chances.

Which is where the list comes in.

Abby gives herself one month to do ten things, ranging from face a fear (#3) to learn a stranger’s story (#5) to fall in love (#8). She knows that if she can complete the list, she’ll become the kind of artist she’s always dreamed of being.

But as the deadline approaches, Abby realizes that getting through the list isn’t as straightforward as it seems . . . and that maybe—just maybe—she can’t change her art if she isn’t first willing to change herself.

Timepiece: A Steampunk Time-Travel Adventure
You only THINK you know what happened at Waterloo

The real story involved more monsters. And a lot more time travel

It’s 1815, and Wellington’s badly-outnumbered army stares across the field of Waterloo at Napoleon’s forces. Desperate to hold until reinforcements arrive, Wellington calls upon a race of monsters created by a mad Genevese scientist 25 years before.

It’s 1815, and a discontented young lady sitting in a rose garden receives a mysterious gift: a pocket watch that, when opened, displays scenes from all eras of history. Past…and future.

It’s 1885, and a small band of resistance fighters are resorting to increasingly extreme methods in their efforts to overthrow a steampunk Empire whose clockwork gears are slick with its subjects’ blood.

Are these events connected?

Oh, come now. That would be telling.

Divine Fall
After tragedy tears Jamie Brandt's life apart, her only goal is to finish high school so she can leave her small hometown behind. In the meantime, riding her horse is her main source of solace, until a mysterious stable hand shows up at the barn. There's something not quite right about the handsome new employee, and the more Jamie sees of him, the more determined she becomes to figure out what he's hiding.

Dothan Reed came to historic Huntsville, Maryland, for one reason--revenge. But his plan can't move forward until he finds the missing piece he needs to enhance his powers. As the only surviving Nephilim, Dothan is not only weaker than full-blooded angels; his forbidden lineage makes him an outcast in both worlds. When he discovers Jamie is the key to locating an ancient weapon, he's forced to interact with a vulnerable human girl--a task that becomes more appealing with each encounter.

Jamie soon learns Dothan isn't the only one with a dark secret. Each new revelation further threatens her safety, and Dothan's betrayal shatters her heart. Forgiving him seems impossible, but the thought of turning her back on him is equally painful.

As their connection deepens, Dothan will have to make his own difficult choice: continue on his path of vengeance, or protect the girl he loves. And when Dothan's actions thrust Jamie into an unforeseen danger, he must seek the help of his enemy...or risk losing her forever.

Devil's Playground
Sixteen-year-old Elizabeth Winters may be a witch, but she doesn’t know the first thing about magic—unless you count accidental bouts of spontaneous combustion. Elizabeth’s father, a wizard himself, has forbidden the use of her powers for her own protection, but when accusations of witchcraft start flying through Salem Village, she wishes she was more prepared.
Despite her lack of magical knowledge, Elizabeth appoints herself to save innocent women from the demise the village has in store for them. Elizabeth finds, however, that she is not the hero Salem needs her to be.
She meant to save them. She cursed them instead.

Shortcomings
High School is hard enough without the cold stares from classmates that remind you every day how different you are.

Our shortcomings don't define who we are, unless we let them. Cindy Johnson needs to learn that. Born with one leg shorter than the other, she has no self-esteem because of the cruel comments and cold stares she receives from her classmates. When Cory Neil, the football quarterback asks her to Homecoming, she's quite sure he's asked her on a dare and refuses. It takes more than just her mother's assurances that Cindy's beautiful before she realizes she may have made a mistake in turning him down

Coming Up for Air
Swim. Eat. Shower. School. Snack. Swim. Swim. Swim. Dinner. Homework. Bed. Repeat.

All of Maggie's focus and free time is spent swimming. She's not only striving to earn scholarships―she's training to qualify for the Olympics. It helps that her best friend, Levi, is also on the team, and cheers her on. But Levi's already earned an Olympic tryout, so Maggie feels even more pressure to succeed. And it's not until Maggie's away on a college visit that she realizes how much of the "typical" high school experience she's missed by being in the pool.

No one to shy away from a challenge, Maggie decides to squeeze the most out of her senior year. First up? Making out with a guy. And Levi could be the perfect candidate. After all, they already spend a lot of time together. But as Maggie slowly starts to uncover new feelings for Levi, how much is she willing to sacrifice in the water to win at love?

How to Keep a Boy from Kissing You
Sweet sixteen and never been kissed—and that’s the way Aurora Skye wants it to be. She’s too busy finding guys for her two best friends, counseling her sensitive New Age dad (the NAD), and dealing with the unexpected return of her long-absent mom.

But always in the background there’s Hayden Paris, the boy next door, the bane of Aurora’s existence. Smart, funny, and always around to see her at her worst, he ‘gets’ her like no-one else... and that’s what makes him so infuriating.

When Aurora and Hayden are coerced into the lead roles in the school production of Much Ado About Nothing, things can only get worse. How is Aurora going to save her first kiss for the secret admirer who wooed her with poetry and a spectacular bunch of flowers on Valentine’s Day if she doesn’t know who he is and she’s obligated to lock lips with Hayden in the play’s final dramatic clinch?

From talented debut YA author Tara Eglington, How to Keep a Boy from Kissing You is a page-turning, funny and delicious romp of a book.

Alex, Approximately
In this delightfully charming teen spin on You’ve Got Mail, the one guy Bailey Rydell can’t stand is actually the boy of her dreams—she just doesn’t know it yet.

Classic movie buff Bailey “Mink” Rydell has spent half of her junior year falling for a sensitive film geek she only knows online as “Alex.” Two coasts separate them until she moves in with her dad, who lives in the same California surfing town as her online crush.

Faced with doubts (what if he’s a creep—or worse?), Bailey doesn’t tell Alex she’s moved to his hometown. Or that she’s landed a job at the local tourist trap, the oddball Cavern Palace Museum. Or that she’s being tormented daily by Porter Roth, a smart-alecky yet irritatingly hot museum security guard. But when Porter and Bailey are locked in the museum overnight, Bailey is forced to choose whether she should cling to a dreamy fantasy in Alex or take a risk on an imperfect reality with Porter. The choice is both simpler and more complicated than she realizes, because Porter Roth is hiding a secret of his own: Porter is Alex. Approximately.

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?

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.

Triumph of Chaos
After the disaster in Europe, Darlena’s starting to get desperate. She knows the only way to
defeat Hecate and the other crazy Red Gods is by banding together with other Witches, but is it any wonder she has a hard time trusting them?

With Izzy’s support, Darlena begins making fragile strides toward repairing the mess she made,
but she just can’t catch a break. As chaos runs rampant around her, Darlena begins to think that things would be better if she’d never become a Red Witch in the first place. But there’s no way to change the past…is there?

The final book in the Red Magic series brings Darlena face to face with impossible odds, and a
terrifying choice.

The Revenge Artist
Evelyn Hernandez is a high school junior who reads Shakespeare for fun, sews her own dresses, and keeps a sketch journal of her daily life. When Varsity quarterback Garvey Valenzuela breaks her heart, she sends him to the emergency room with a busted hand.

Add black magic to her resume...

Evelyn embarks on a dark journey of revenge when she discovers she has the power to make bad things happen by drawing them. Her emotional pain, isolation, and self-hatred lead her down a self-destructive path with dire consequences.

French Fries with a Side of Guys
Payton Carter is one of six kids (all of which are named after famous football players), not to mention the only girl in the Carter household. With this much testosterone and no mother, it’s no wonder she’s absolutely clueless when it comes to makeup, dances, and talking to guys she’s crushing on.

And now she’s about ready to start her freshman year of high school, which is nerve wrenching enough. But when she ends up running into her crush, Chance Montgomery, at her dad’s sports restaurant, she finds out that the quarterback for their rival team is moving to Aller Falls. This is nothing short of fate.

Payton realizes she has to find a way to impress Chance and get him to ask her out or at least know she’s interested in him—preferably without dropping a plateful of fries on his head, like she did last time. After taking her two oldest brothers’ advice, she decides to go out for the freshman football team, figuring that between practices and games she and her crush will surely be able to talk.

And maybe talking will lead to something more permanent or at least to a first kiss. Only this plan backfires in ways she never imagined, when she beats Chance Montgomery out of the starting quarterback position. Now not only does she make him the laughing stock of the team, but also has to figure out how to avoid the snotty cheerleaders, a traitor best friend, not to mention winning games for her team. Too bad this is just the beginning of her freshman year.

Earth's End
A woman awoken in air, a soldier forged by fire, a weapon risen from blood.
Vhalla Yarl has made it to the warfront in the North. Forged by blood and fire, she has steeled her heart for the final battle of the Solaris Empire's conquest. The choices before Vhalla are no longer servitude or freedom, they are servitude or death. The stakes have never been higher as the Emperor maintains his iron grip on her fate, holding everything Vhalla still has left to lose in the balance.

Starfall
When Princess Cassia Rose fled her home world of Eturia to escape an arranged marriage, she had no idea her sudden departure would spark a war. Now after two years hiding as a ship hand, she is finally returning to her beloved home but not in the way she imagined. Shackled by bounty hunters, she is violently dragged back to account for her crimes. Her only solace is that the Banshee crew managed to evade capture, including Kane Arric, her best friend...with occasional benefits.

Meanwhile, Kane and the rest of the crew of the Banshee plan a desperate rescue mission. But when they arrive on Eturia, Cassia isn't exactly in need of heroics--she's claimed her birthright as Eturia's queen, but has inherited a war-torn planet simmering with rebellion. Cassia must make alliances, and Kane, the bastard son of a merchant, isn't a choice that will earn her any friends. Kane knows he will never find someone to replace Cassia--and is certain she returns his feelings--but how can he throw away his own promising future waiting on a queen?

When the outer realm is threatened by the dangerous Zhang mafia, Cassia, Kane and the rest of the Banshee crew uncover a horrifying conspiracy that endangers the entire universe. In the face of unspeakable evil, Cassia must confront her own family's complicated legacy on Eturia and decide once and for all who her real family is.

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.

Starr Fall
On the run from the Organization, Starr never planned on falling in love.

Starr Bishop’s the complete package. A perfect smile, brains to match, and a winning attitude. Boys want to date her and girls want to be her. She’s the type of girl you want to hate, if only she wasn’t so damn likable. But don’t worry, she’s not interested in your boyfriend. Boys are one complication she can live without.

When the Organization decides she’s not only the model student but the ideal assassin, Starr’ll need a lot more than high test scores and extracurricular involvement to get herself out of that commitment.

Dark, moody, and dead sexy Christian Evergood is the last person she’d expect—or even want— to come to her rescue. From opposite ends of Webster High’s social hierarchy, their lives collide in one electrifying moment. Christian isn’t the Goth loner he pretends to be, he’s a part Cherokee, All-American boy who wants to be a hero, Starr’s hero. Christian makes Starr forget that the Organization is after her, but nothing will stop the Organization from collecting their top recruit.

By the way, the spot for junior class president just became available.

What People Are Saying About Starr Fall....
"I was swept up in Kim Briggs' whirlwind of secrets, swoon, and adventure from page one. Beautifully writing combined with a smart, driven protagonist made this a book I couldn't put down.” —Isabel Bandeira, Author of Bookishly Ever After (Jan 2016) and Dramatically Ever After (June 2017)

As the opener in what promises to be a thrilling series, Starr Fall hits the ground running and hits the water swimming. I couldn’t turn the pages fast enough as Starr went from a super-achieving but otherwise pretty normal high school junior to a girl on the run from a shady, powerful government (maybe) agency and a deep, dark conspiracy we only see in glimpses. And why has the weird kid from school suddenly become her ultra-hot sidekick, with a connection between them that literally gives off sparks? He’s a lot more than he seems. Every answer raises another question as the reader ricochets between the threat level outside the remote cabin and the heat level inside it. Briggs knows how to crank up both kinds of tension, in the best possible way. Book two can’t come soon enough for this reader! -- Liz Coley, author of the award winning, internationally best-selling Pretty Girl-13

Holding Up the Universe
Everyone thinks they know Libby Strout, the girl once dubbed “America’s Fattest Teen.” But no one’s taken the time to look past her weight to get to know who she really is. Following her mom’s death, she’s been picking up the pieces in the privacy of her home, dealing with her heartbroken father and her own grief. Now, Libby’s ready: for high school, for new friends, for love, and for EVERY POSSIBILITY LIFE HAS TO OFFER. In that moment, I know the part I want to play here at MVB High. I want to be the girl who can do anything.

Everyone thinks they know Jack Masselin, too. Yes, he’s got swagger, but he’s also mastered the impossible art of giving people what they want, of fitting in. What no one knows is that Jack has a newly acquired secret: he can’t recognize faces. Even his own brothers are strangers to him. He’s the guy who can re-engineer and rebuild anything in new and bad-ass ways, but he can’t understand what’s going on with the inner workings of his brain. So he tells himself to play it cool: Be charming. Be hilarious. Don’t get too close to anyone.

Until he meets Libby. When the two get tangled up in a cruel high school game—which lands them in group counseling and community service—Libby and Jack are both pissed, and then surprised. Because the more time they spend together, the less alone they feel. . . . Because sometimes when you meet someone, it changes the world, theirs and yours.

Jennifer Niven delivers another poignant, exhilarating love story about finding that person who sees you for who you are—and seeing them right back.

The Impossible Vastness of Us
"I know how to watch my back. I'm the only one that ever has."

India Maxwell hasn't just moved across the country—she's plummeted to the bottom rung of the social ladder. It's taken years to cover the mess of her home life with a veneer of popularity. Now she's living in one of Boston's wealthiest neighborhoods with her mom's fiancé and his daughter, Eloise. Thanks to her soon-to-be stepsister's clique of friends, including Eloise's gorgeous, arrogant boyfriend, Finn, India feels like the one thing she hoped never to be seen as again: trash.

But India's not alone in struggling to control the secrets of her past. Eloise and Finn, the school's golden couple, aren't all they seem to be. In fact, everyone's life is infinitely more complex than it first appears. And as India grows closer to Finn and befriends Eloise, threatening the facades that hold them together, what's left are truths that are brutal, beautiful and big enough to change them forever…

From New York Times bestselling author Samantha Young comes a story of friendship, identity and acceptance that will break your heart—and make it whole again.

Four Times Broken
Tracey Warren has her last year of high school mapped out--stay focused, graduate in a few months, and get the hell out of Bennington, Virginia. Everything is working out in her favor. Life has finally started to level out, until a car accident sends her plans spiraling out of her control.

Her pedestrian reality crashes around her after an innocuous encounter with a diabolically handsome stranger. Nathan Newcomb has her head and her world altering minute by minute. Soon, she discovers the only cure for the uneasy feelings and abrasive pain is Nathan himself. A man whose very existence balances between violent chaos and rigidly controlled dangers.

Nathan knows the life of a woman mated to a Burdened Sephlem is destined for peril beyond a human’s reckoning, that he’ll be required to literally hand over his heart to her. But Tracey calls to his desire to experience love in spite of the hazards. And Nathan’s impossibly potent magnetism draws Tracey into a bonding that will put her in mortal danger again and again.

Once the pair becomes one, the threat escalates and nowhere is safe. There are enemies that lurk behind every corner. But the greatest danger may be in the bloodlines that course through Nathan’s veins.

Can their love survive or will their burdened souls surrender and fade away?

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?

The Raven King
All her life, Blue has been warned that she will cause her true love's death. She doesn't believe in true love and never thought this would be a problem, but as her life becomes caught up in the strange and sinister world of the Raven Boys, she's not so sure anymore.

P.S. I Like You
Signed, sealed, delivered...

While spacing out in Chemistry class, Lily scribbles some of her favorite song lyrics onto her desk. The next day, she finds that someone has continued the lyrics on the desk, and added a message to her. Intrigue!

Soon, Lily and her anonymous pen pal are exchanging full-on letters -- sharing secrets, recommending bands, and opening up to each other. Lily realizes she's kind of falling for this letter writer. Only who is he? As Lily attempts to unravel the mystery, and juggle school, friends, crushes, and her crazy family, she discovers that matters of the heart can't always be spelled out...

Kasie West brings irresistible wit, warmth, and sparkle to this swoon-worthy story of love showing up when you least expect it.

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.

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?

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.

Norma Jean's School of Witchery, Book One: Jewel
A presidential election. A witch with a target on her back and a magical arrow. A shadowy government agency made up of witches with unusual abilities. A game called Witch Pong. The Mighty Thor?

See how it all comes together in a school you will never forget.

These Vicious Masks
Evelyn has no interest in marriage and even the dashing Mr. Kent can't make her want to live up to society's expectations. She'd much rather assist her beloved sister Rose in becoming the world's first female doctor. But everything changes the night she meets Sebastian Braddock – not only is the reclusive lord both vexing and surprisingly attractive, he's also quite possibly mad, and his interest in Rose is galling. So when Evelyn wakes up to discover that Rose has disappeared, she immediately suspects Sebastian.

But then she discovers that Sebastian's strange tales of special powers are actually true, and that Rose's kidnappers have worse in mind for her than simply ruining her reputation. Surrounded by secrets, lies, and unprecedented danger, Evelyn has no choice but to trust Sebastian, yet she can't help but worry that Sebastian's secrets are the most dangerous of all…

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.