Reviews

Book Review: Defy the Stars by Claudia Gray

31423196Title & Author: Defy the Stars by Claudia Gray

Genre: Young Adult, Sci-Fi

Release Date: April 4th 2017

Series: YES!!!!!!!!!

Publisher: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers

Source: ARC via Publisher

Description: Noemi Vidal is a teen soldier from the planet Genesis, once a colony of Earth that’s now at war for its independence. The humans of Genesis have fought Earth’s robotic “mech” armies for decades with no end in sight.

After a surprise attack, Noemi finds herself stranded in space on an abandoned ship where she meets Abel, the most sophisticated mech prototype ever made. One who should be her enemy. But Abel’s programming forces him to obey Noemi as his commander, which means he has to help her save Genesis–even though her plan to win the war will kill him.

Together they embark on a daring voyage through the galaxy. Before long, Noemi begins to realize Abel may be more than a machine, and, for his part, Abel’s devotion to Noemi is no longer just a matter of programming.

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I received this book in exchange for an honest review

This is the first book by Claudia Gray I have ever read and I am KICKING myself for waiting this long. This book was amazing. Absolutely stunning. I have never wanted to 5 star a book so hard in my life. This is the best sci-fi book I have ever read. Ever. If you think I am overreacting just know I read this over three weeks ago and am still immensely excited from reading this book. For so long I felt burned by a lot of sci-fi as it was so… hoaky. After the very first chapter of this book I knew I was in love. And all other sci-fi books I thought were good paled in comparison.

I don’t give spoilers (if I do it’s very rarely) but this is one of the few times I can say a bittersweet ending did it justice. Of course at the end of this book I was screaming for more and praying to the book gods for a series so I can have more of all the witty and amazingly complex characters Claudia stuffed this book with but the ending was great either way. I am 100% pro Abel and will never be able to think about Mech’s the same now. I also got confirmation via twitter from Claudia herself that this will be a series! (I am screaming into the void in happiness.) I am also quickly realizing this is less of a review than a rant on how amazing this book is. Sorry not sorry.

OK, real review time. I swear.

First of all Earth is dying. In this book we see the future as bleak and cold and full of war. Genesis a once Earth colony is fighting for their independence from Earth. Earth at this point has been searching the vast galaxies for a planet suitable for inhabiting all 8+ billion people on Earth. While they have found a few planets none are as perfect as Genesis. The hows and whys I will leave blank as you need to read them to really grasp what is going on.

As for characters Noemi is one of the best broken, flawed, under estimated characters I have ever read. She is a true soldier willing to put her planet above all else. Including her life. Abel is the perfect mech, the type A. He has surpassed every mech law put into place and transcended being a mere robot. Together they travel the length of the known universe in search for a way to save Genesis. Along the way they meet amazing people, see breathtaking planets, and witness devastating loss. If that hasn’t sold you yet then I don’t know what will.

Goodreads | Amazon | Authors Website

Reviews

Book Review: Ultimatum by K.M. Walton

30095461Title & Author: Ultimatum by K.M. Walton

Genre: Young Adult, Contemporary

Release Date: March 7th 2017

SeriesStandalone

Publisher: Sourcebooks Fire

Source: ARC via Publisher

Description: A gripping, emotional story of two brothers who must decide what’s more important: family or their differences.

Oscar is misunderstood. Ever since his mother died, he’s been disrespected and bullied by his family, and he seeks refuge in his art. Vance is a popular athlete and wishes his brother would just loosen up and be cool. It was hard enough to deal with their mother’s death without Oscar getting all emotional. Vance just wants to throw himself into partying, to live.

But when their father’s alcoholism sends him into liver failure, the two boys must come face-to-face with their demons-and each other-if they are going to survive an uncertain future.

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I received this book in exchange for an honest review

This book tore me up all into all kinds of sharp jagged pieces. By the end I think I lost track of how much I cried and my boyfriend was contemplating my mental health. Ultimatum is a dual POV but done incredibly well. Oscar’s POV is set in the present. Vance’s takes place from the earliest memory  leading all the way up to the present. The mix of timelines really draws the differences in these brothers and how their minds work. Vance is so brash and angry while Oscar is a introvert and quiet soul.

I’m not going to give anything away but by the end of this book I can guarantee you’ll be misty eyed. I love their newfound relationship with one another and this book was the perfect mix of soul wrench sadness and coming of age moments.

Goodreads | Amazon | Authors Website

Lists · Uncategorized

2017 Books I’m Excited For – Diverse Reads Edition

This year is all about amazing diverse reads and with it a ton of new diverse books are being published and I am SO HYPED. Y’all, I am so tired of reading about the cookie cutter girl who has “blondish-brown hair” and “hazel eyes” so the reader can superimpose themselves on said character. We need diversity and change and now more than ever it is extremely important that there is more diverse reads as *gasp* authors and publishing companies are realizing there are more diverse readers!

This is not an all encompassing list, but merely some of my most anticipated. There are tons of amazing diverse books coming out this year and a lot of bloggers have made really great lists as well. I recommend you look at other lists ti find more great reads.

This list is in publishing date order.

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Queens of Geek by Jen Wilde

Released: March 14th

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Noteworthy by Riley Redgate

Released: May 2nd

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Girl Out of Water by Laura Silverman

Released: May 2nd

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I Believe in a Thing Called Love by Maurene Goo

Released: May 30th

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When Dimple Met Rishi by Sandhya Menon

Released: May 30th

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Want by Cindy Pon

Released: June 13th

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The Gentleman’s Guide to Vice and Virtue by Mackenzi Lee

Released: June 27th

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Before She Ignites by Jodi Meadows

Released: September 26th

 

Reviews

Book Review: Checkmate: This is Reckless by Kennedy Fox

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Title & Author: Checkmate: This is Reckless by Kennedy Fox

Genre: Romance, Contemporary

Release Date: February 28, 2017

Series: A Checkmate Duet Series, #3

Publisher: Amazon Digital Services LLC

Source: ARC via Author

Description: Introducing book 1 in the new Checkmate Duet Series from a secret duo of romance authors under the USA Today Bestselling pseudonym, Kennedy Fox! 

This friends to lovers romance will have you swooning and laughing from the first to the last page! Are you ready to play the game?

Drew Fisher is the type of guy every girl wants.
Noble police officer by day, charming prince by night.
He has no idea the effect he has on women, especially me–his little sister’s best friend.
I’m the blonde Southern belle who lives up to the cliché, except I have my own quirks. I’m smart as a whip, can change my own oil, and recite The Pledge of Allegiance backward, but he doesn’t see that girl.

It’d be easier to forget him if he wasn’t my roommate and if the first thing I saw in the morning wasn’t his shirtless body covered in tattoos. I’ve crushed on him since the day we met, but he’s made it perfectly clear where we stand. Just friends.

I know I need to move on and accept that his feelings will never be mutual, but every day he smiles at me, I’m left dreaming of what if.
He has girl issues, and I’ve got a crush I can’t deny.
We’re friends, but I want more.

One drunken hookup leaves us with much more than a platonic friendship. Pretending it never happened proves to be more difficult than anticipated.

A crazy ex-girlfriend, a dangerous war of stolen glances, and passionate kisses leads to the most reckless battle yet. I won’t be a pawn in his game, but I’ll play by his rules if it will show him I’m the one worth breaking them for.

Checkmate, Prince Charming.

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I received this book in exchange for an honest review

I’m doing this a bit out of order because I was lucky enough to get a ARC copy of the book. The previous books in this series reviews will be up soon.

First of all WOW. I am so in love with contemporary romance lately. I have no idea who Kennedy Fox is (I know its two amazing writers that’s for sure!) but they are rocking my world!

This book was all sorts of steamy and amazing! Finally we get to see more of Drew and Courtney and I. Love. It. Drew is Viola’s big brother and Courtney is Viola’s best friend. Talk about forbidden crush. I won’t give anything way because obviously they hook up from the premise but so much more goes on then imaginable. I love the atmosphere and tension in the writing, it gives it such a dramatic yet realistic feel. I was worried when reading the first book by Kennedy Fox that things might be… over the top in terms of drama but as the story progressed it all made sense. Courtney is definitely a character I can get behind. She is feisty and funny as hell and that darn smoldering Drew just about did me in. I can’t wait for the next book!

Fans of contemporary romance you will love this I promise!

Goodreads | Amazon | Authors Website

Reviews · Uncategorized

Book Review: Pretty Fierce by Kieran Scott

30612667Title & Author: Pretty Fierce by Kieran Scott

Genre: YA- Contemporary, Action, Romance

Release Date: April 4th 2017

Series: Standalone?

Publisher: Sourcebooks Fire

Source: ARC via Publisher

Description: Kaia has been on the run her whole life. The daughter of professional assassins, she knows true danger—and she’ll do anything to survive. After her parents vanished during a job gone bad, Kaia’s spent the last year in hiding, trying to blend in as an ordinary teenager, and there’s no one who makes her feel more normal or more special than her boyfriend, Oliver.

But when she’s jumped by a hit man, and Oliver catches her fighting back, Kaia’s secret is exposed. In a split-second decision, she flees the small town, taking Oliver with her. With professional killers stalking their every move, can Oliver and Kaia protect each other long enough to uncover the mysteries of her past?

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I received this book in exchange for an honest review

This book took me forever to finish. Partly because I was juggling three books at any given time and partly because it had its ups and downs. I would get sucked into the amazing detail and super spy like action but then Kaia would do something really stupid like try to abandon Oliver at a random gas station and I would just have to set down the book. There was also a lot of give and take with the characters and a LOT of miscommunication. Which helped character growth but still really ticked me off at points. Overall I would say its pretty good with plenty of crazy action scenes and a pretty unique story. What threw a wrench in it was the ending where everything got wrapped up into a neat little bow in a matter of like 5 pages. If that. It was just so… anticlimactic. With all the traveling and gun slinging and henchmen bashing Kaia and Oliver did I was hoping for more of a bang at the end. Or a lead up into another book?

Either way I’m happy I read it but don’t plan on running out to buy it.This is the first book by Scott I have read and although I didn’t love Pretty Fierce I have a feeling I might like her other work.

Goodreads | Amazon | Authors Website

Memes

My Top Ten Favorite Book Romances and Couples

Top Ten Tuesday is an original feature/weekly meme created and hosted by The Broke and the Bookish

This week is all things Romance and so I decided to not only list my favorite couples but also my favorite types of relationships.

My Favorite Types of Romance/Relationships

1. Bromance

I love Bromance. Two male characters that are the best of friends and willing to go to the end of the earth for each other. What would be better?

Recommendation: The Lunar Chronicles by Marissa Meyer, Throne of Glass by Sarah J. Maas

2. The Build-Each-Other-Up

Romance is almost always 1000% better if each participant helps one another. Although this is not romantic love my favorite is Aelin and Lysandra from the Throne of Glass series. They have this amazing friendship and love for one another (that started out very rocky) that they would do anything for each other. They are constantly helping each other better themselves and see their full potential. Another great example is Feyre and Ryhsand.

Recommendation: Throne of Glass series and the ACOTAR series both by Sarah J. Maas

3. Star-Crossed Lovers

Two people who would love to be together but due to circumstances they are unable to make it a reality. The first couple that comes to mind is Eleanor and Park and let me tell you their relationship is a ship I am willing to go down with.

Recommendation: Eleanor and Park by Rainbow Rowell

Image result for eleanor and park
Art by Simini Blocker

4. Enemies to Lovers

Who doesn’t love a steamy hate/hate relationship that morphs into steamy love?

Recommendation: Bully and Punk 57 by Penelope Douglas, The Deal by Elle Kennedy

5. Retellings

Whether its a fairytale or some other remake I am a sucker for a good retelling. Enough said.

Recommendation: ACOTAR by Sarah J. Maas, Crimson Bound by Roseamund Hodge and Cinder & Ella by Kelly Oram

6. Fake It Till You Make It

Stories that start off with a fake relationship that slowly morphs into a real one are so good. I am a true sucker for them.

Recommendation: Faking It, The Fill-In Boyfriend

My Favorite Book Couples

1. Feyre and Rhysand from ACOTAR by Sarah J. Maas

2. Cather and Levi from Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell

3. Mercedes and Adam from The Mercy Thompson book series by Patricia Briggs

4. Ronan and Adam from The Raven Boys series by Maggie Stiefvater

 

That’s it for me! Did you make a Top Ten Tuesday this week? If so I would LOVE to see it.

 

TBR

February 2017 TBR & Upcoming Posts

Three posts in a row, what is this? A miracle? Probably.

TBR posts tend to give me anxiety because then I feel pressured to read all the books. As we all know pressure and Ashley doesn’t mix well so I’m making this VERY loose. More like a suggestion post. Which is exactly why I added an upcoming post section at the end. This was you’ll know what I have coming up for the month!

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The Bone Witch by Rin Chupeco

Ultimatum by K. M. Walton

Done Dirt Cheap by Sarah Nicole Lemon

All three of these are released in the first half of March so I have to finish them to post my reviews. Luckily I’m nearly done with The Bone Witch and Ultimatum is queued up right after that. Plus after reading The Homecoming and You Before Anyone Else I’ve really fallen in love with contemporary so Ultimatum and Done Dirt Cheap are a perfect choice.

Upcoming Posts

  • 2017 Books I’m Excited For
  • Top Ten Books I Wish Had More (To Be Determined) In Them
  • Resolution Vox Box Review from Influenster
  • Ten Books I Loved Less/More Than I Thought I Would
  • Favorite Werewolf Reads

There you have it. What are you reading this month? I’d love to know, please link your post if you have one in the comment section so I can hop over and check it out.