Reading Wrap-Up: May 2017

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A Court of Wings and Ruin by Sarah J. Maas

⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

MY HEART IS BLEEDING. And I don’t know how to stop it. Can someone just hug me? Please? I’m serious. This book has emotionally drained me. Anyways. I’ve been living in this fae world for several months now (clearly not enough time for me), and I’m sad to see Feyre’s story end. If Feyre and Rhys weren’t enough to break my heart, then all the others in the Night Court would. I adore Sarah’s complex world, and I just hope her next instalments will live up to this past one!

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The Darkest Kiss by Gena Showalter

⭐️⭐️⭐️ ½

Hello, morbid nerd alert. How do you capture my attention? Bring in a character who possesses death. I think you had me at the word “death.” I cannot stop reading Gena’s Lords of the Underworld series. I’m trying to catch up to my friend, who just loves to give me tidbits from the next books (book tease, anyone?!). The series hooked me from the beginning. You get tortured immortal warriors who are doomed to house demons, fast-paced action, and even faster love stories.

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Adulthood Is a Myth by Sarah Andersen

⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

I have found my spirit animal…in a comic strip. Sarah captures who I am: the slight social introvert who cannot get enough books, the awkward nerd who lives in hoodies, and the odd cat lover. I’ve been following some of her work for several years but haven’t got the chance to read her debut strip until now. I love it. Highly recommend!

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Big Mushy Happy Lump by Sarah Andersen

⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

Ahhh, this book is to die for. Obviously the sequel hits just the right notes. I finished these two comic strips in under an hour. If you think Sarah’s first strip was good, then definitely pick this one up. The sequel has a stronger cohesive flow to it. But she doesn’t scrimp on the social awkwardness. And I love how she brings humour to social anxiety.

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The Darkest Pleasure by Gena Showalter

⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

Gena finally gives us Reyes and Danika’s story. She has hinted at it from the first book, Darkest Night and strung us along for awhile. I love these two. Reyes, keeper of Pain, has intrigued me from the first time he met Danika. Gena adds in a bit of forbidden love, and she has me hooked.

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The Darkest Whisper by Gena Showalter

⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

You know, I’ve wondered how I’d like reading about Sabin, the keeper of Doubt and the leader of the Greek faction. In previous instalments he sometimes got on my nerves, but with this sequel, I’ve grown to like him more. And he just gets more adorable when he find Gwen, a kidnapped harpy even his demon is afraid of!

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Flame in the Mist by Renée Ahdieh

⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️½

I’ve been waiting to read this book for about a year. And Flame in the Mist doesn’t disappoint. I wasn’t expecting to love it this much, but I do. It is a beautifully written and lyrical fantasy that I’m sad to put down and is definitely one of my greatest reads for this year.

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Lady Midnight by Cassandra Clare

⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

Surprisingly, I enjoyed reading this new Shadowhunter series. I’ve been always gone back to Cassie’s work, since her last two series have been my guilty pleasure for years. Cassie introduces the Blackthorns and Emma Carstairs in City of Heavenly Fire, and since then I’ve wondered how they’d survive after a devastating lost and heal. She plays with the parabatai and forbidden love storyline, so I wonder what what she has to offer in the sequel.

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Book Haul: May 2017

I’m spoiled. I wasn’t expecting a large book haul last month. But I finally received my two most anticipated books of 2017! What did you get? Let me know in the comments.

 

25487124Missing by Kelley Armstrong

YA novel with a mystery/thriller twist and a Kelley book? I’m in. Honestly, I don’t need to read the synopsis; I’ll just add the book to my ever growing TBR on Goodreads and pre-order it. I’m turning desperate, I swear.

Every teenager dreams of leaving Reeve’s End. Winter Crane hopes to do the same. But when she finds a boy left for dead in the forest she loves, she wonders what has happened to the other teenagers.

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A Court of Wings and Ruin by Sarah J. Maas

ACOWAR is my most anticipated book of the year, and I cannot stop looking at it. Obviously Sarah is planning to write more novels from the ACOTAR world, but I’m rather sad to see Feyre’s POV end, since I believe Feyre has more stories to tell.

ACOWAR (ominous acronym, don’t you say?) quickly starts off from ACOMAF. Feyre is back in the Spring Court and hopes to find everything she can about the coming war and the King of Hybern. But with betrayal and deceit at every turn, Feyre must find who she can trust and who will be her ally.

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Flame in the Mist by Renée Ahdieh

Here’s my second most anticipated book of 2017. I’ve been waiting to read this book for a long time! And I’ve bee drooling over that cover equally as long.

Mariko, a daughter of a samuri, survives an attack while she was on route to her betrothed. To discover why she marked for death, she infiltrates the Black Clan. But what she soon learns will change her life.

I’ve recently finished it, so I cannot wait to get my hands on the sequel!

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The Darkest Kiss by Gena Showalter

Beth, you are a godsend. And naturally you continue to supply my book addiction you created. 😂 I love you, woman.

Determined to find ancient artifacts that may lead to the Lords’ freedom, Lucien, Keeper of Death, is ordered to kill Anya, the Goddess of Anarchy. What he doesn’t know that she’s hellbent on hooking him.

The second instalment of the Lords of the Underworld series will capture the attention of any paranormal romance reader.

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The Darkest Pleasure by Gena Showalter

Danika Ford has been on the run for months, since Aeron, the Keeper of Wrath is tasked to kill her and her family. Finally, I get to read Reyes’ book. Reyes, the Keeper of Pain, can’t help but protect her. But their undeniable attraction may just doom them both.

Gena has been hinting at Danika and Reyes’ story since the first book, The Darkest Night. And I’ve been eagerly waiting to read their book since my friend gifted it to me.

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The Darkest Whisper by Gena Showalter

Sabin, Keeper of Doubt, prefers the battlefield over the bedroom. And I don’t blame him. His demon will shatter any woman’s confidence. But Gwen, a harpy oddly nicknamed the Timid, is up for the challenge, even though she fears Sabin may spark her inner harpy. He takes her under his wing once he and the other Lords set her and other supernaturals free from the Hunters.

But the Lords’ hunt for the artifacts leading them to Pandora’s Box may just become increasingly dangerous than the warriors thought.

Keep your eyes open for my review!

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Review: The Darkest Pleasure by Gena Showalter

2712967The Darkest Pleasure by Gena Showalter

Published by: Harlequin

Publication Date: December 22, 2009

Genre: Paranormal Romance, Fantasy

Page Count: 368

Rating: 4/5

Source: Gift


Reyes is a man possessed. Bound by the demon of pain, he is forbidden to know pleasure. Yet he craves a mortal woman, Danika Ford, more than breath and will do anything to claim her–even defy the gods. Danika is on the run. For months she’s eluded the Lords of the Underworld, immortal warriors who won’t rest until she and her family have been destroyed. But her dreams are haunted by Reyes, the warrior whose searing touch she can’t forget. Yet a future together could mean death to all they both hold dear.


“He was dark, she was light. He was anguish, she was innocence. He was wrong for her in every way, and yet, when she looked at him, his entire world felt right.”

As I sink more into the Lords of the Underworld series, I see why readers love it. Mix in steamy sex scenes that will make anyone turn crimson, throw in tortured men, put in an intriguing mythology, and create a fast-paced story that will surely keep readers enthralled, and you get a dedicated following.

Reyes, Keeper of Pain, cannot seem to wipe Danika from his mind. Separated from her family, she has been on the run for months. Tormented by her dreams and her fear of Aeron, the Keeper or Wrath, she strikes a deal with Hunters, when they kidnap her. She will infiltrate the Lords and give intel on them, but lines  blur when, once Reyes saves her from the Hunters, she discovers he and the other Lords are more than what the Hunters accuse them of, and her attraction toward Reyes grows. But she must choose: side with the Hunters and purge this world of these demons or give in to her desire for Reyes. Unfortunately, the choice is much harder than Danika thinks.

 

“This means nothing,” she said.
“Less than nothing,” he lied.
“I’ll hate myself later.”
“I hate myself now.”

After reading the Darkest Kiss, I find The Darkest Pleasure refreshing. I’m rather fond of Reyes and Danika’s relationship. She, after all, is one of the four Ford women Cronus tasks Aeron to kill, but the Lords and her family do not understand why. What I love about their relationship is how they try to avoid it and each other. Obviously, you get a forbidden love vibe from them, but it works perfectly for this story. Reyes refuses to tie himself to any woman because his demon, Pain, influenced his former lovers and often tainted and changed them. This broken Lord just tugged at my heartstrings.  Since Gena been hinting at their relationship since the first book, The Darkest Night, I’ve been eagerly waiting to see how Gena plays out this storyline. And she doesn’t disappoints.

I’ve come to expect the most outrageous plot twists and character arcs from Gena. She goes from Ashlyn sacrificing her life so Maddox’ death curse will be lifted to Anya giving up her All Key to save Lucien. I don’t how she pulls them off, but I constantly feel I have whiplash once I’ve finished her books. And I enjoy how she cleverly weaves them in effortlessly. Now I realize why she has such a strong following. But one particular arc she includes in this instalment nearly turned me into an emotional mess. Since the death of  Sienna, Paris’ development has turned bleak. And given that his book is the ninth, I have a long way to sympathize with this character. She also throws in Aeron’s, which I’ve been hoping to read, as well.

What I love about this sequel is that you get to know the Lords better. You witness the brotherhood the Budpest faction has for one another, and finally the Greece faction gains the opportunity to rekindle the bond they had with the others. The banter between each character and the rich mythology spark my interest and make me want the other books more.

 

“Hope is a demon worse than your Pain.”

Gena focuses on the characters in Darkest Pleasure, and I think in doing so makes it stronger than the previous stories. I will easily admit I love most, if not all, of these characters. But what I look for is their development and struggles. And I want to see how they grab a hold of you and capture your attention. Reyes stands out from the other warriors. Pain controls him, yet he shows Danika nothing but safety and kindness. He chooses her over his brother. Reyes’ demon doesn’t scare Danika, nor does it tempt her. From the other two love interests in Lords of the Underworld, she gains my respect the most because of her strength and her undying will to live and to fight.

I think I can safely say Gena has gained a new follower. And I wonder what she else will pull off in this captivating paranormal romance.