Friday, July 29, 2016

TOUR: Songs of Everealm Series Book 1 & 2

30321471Song of Sovereign by JD Wright
Pages: 248
Source: YA Bound Book Tours
Publication Date: June 20, 2016

Princess Sarita has everything. Loving parents, a castle fit for royalty, fine clothes, loyal friends, and an exciting job as a scholar of magic. At eighteen years of age, one might think that she would be content with her position. But one thing has always been missing from her life... full magic, itself.
When a strange old woman gave Sarita a secret spellbook as a child, her entire life was changed. The book contains spells, songs, and stories. But most of all, it provides a path to gaining full magic, the only thing that Sarita still needs to feel complete. And now, she has finally prepared to leave her home in search of the Stones of the Divine, the final ingredient she needs to gain magic.
Gabrielle has been known as the sister of a knight and best friend of the princess for as long as she can remember. Now an experienced healer's assistant, she is desperate to find her place and purpose in Junacave. An adventurous mission to help Sarita locate a mystical stone may be just the change in her life that she is looking for.
King Cassidy is still alone, but not for a lack of trying. His attempts to convince the Princess of Junacave to marry him over the past ten years have been for naught. And being twenty years old, with no heir, he is running out of time. If he can't win the heart of the princess, he may have to face a future without the love of his life.
Adventure, romance, and magic await as we travel through Everealm with royalty, wizards, fairies, and more, in the fantasy-romance Songs of Everealm, a five book series by J.D. Wright, author of the Everealm Series.

Pages: 237
Publication Date:  June 26, 2016
The journey across Everealm to find the magical stones has not come without its challenges. After being plagued by unwanted guests, disagreements, and accidents, Princess Sarita is beginning to wonder if her dream of gaining magic is a fantasy that can't come true. Along the way, new friends and rekindled sparks between old flames have caused quite a stir within the group. As a new wizard joins the effort and gives the princess a reason to continue, the quest for the next stone ensues...As the sun rises over the ridge, our story continues into the Song of Sparrows!

I'm STILL ALIVE! Before I start, a huge huge sorry for literally disappearing off the face of the internet for the past month. I've been in Taiwan (still am) and I've just been doing a bunch of traveling and haven't had the time to sit down and properly write a post. I also haven't read a ton of books >.< But thankfully there are things called blog tours that force you to do something so here's my review!

The Songs of Everealm is a spinoff from the original the Everealm series which I haven't read. While the description for the first book does say that you don't need to read the original, I think that reading it would definitely improve your experience of reading this one. From what I've gathered from other reviews, Sarita was a character in the original series and many fans of the Everealm series were excited to see her development into an adult. 

With that being said, I didn't know Sarita at all as a character and that made the first book a bit difficult to read. I enjoyed the general world and characters but felt really detached, a fact that I think is due to me not reading the original series. Regardless, by the second book, it was a lot easier to relate and get into the story. The first book provided a glimpse into the world and offered a view at the magical quest Sarita goes on and her development.

Based on a lot of other reviews (I did my research) a lot of people enjoyed watching Sartia's growth from a child in the original series to a young woman now. I wish I could have experienced that same feeling but I was lucky enough to be able to experience some of her character development over these two books. She's incredibly dedicated to magic and is unwilling to compromise her dreams. Her relationship with Cassidy made me laugh and shake my heads at how stubborn they are. They constantly wind each other up but at the same time, there's a lot of respect as well.

Well, I'm glad I actually got to read something this month and these two books definitely made things very interesting. I'm debating on whether I should read the first series or wait a bit since my summer TBR has not shrunk at all...

Click the banner for links to more tour stops!

Writing has always been a hobby of mine, beginning as a young child. It was a way to cope with losing my father at seven years of age. I started with poetry and was featured several times on the amazing poetry blog, Autumn Leaves, by Sondra Ball. My love for poetry soon led to writing songs in middle school and beyond, which I still do occasionally. Music has always been an important part of my existence, so writing songs came naturally to me. In high school, I started my own novel, however, life got in the way and I never finished it.
Fast forward many years later and I find myself married with three children, absorbed in my busy life with commitments to my family, work, school, church, and charities, among other things. One day I came across my old binder, with notes from my first novel, and it was with those notes that I conjured up the elusive Everealm.
I write to please readers such as myself, who have a love for fantasy and romance, but like a little danger and sex in their reading. I wrote the book with a mature audience in mind, who can appreciate a hearty imaginary world with magic and the unknown, but want more than fluffy love stories with wizards in them. They want the romance, magic, and danger, all wrapped into one.
Author Links:
 photo iconwebsite-32x32_zps1f477f69.png  photo icongoodreads32_zps60f83491.png  photo icontwitter-32x32_zpsae13e2b2.png  photo iconfacebook-32x32_zps64a79d4a.png  
3.5 out of 5 stars

Tuesday, July 5, 2016

Review: Life After Juliet

ISBN: 1633753239
Pages: 304
Source: Entangled Publishing
Publication Date: July 5, 2016
Initial Reaction: 
Becca Hanson was never able to make sense of the real world. When her best friend Charlotte died, she gave up on it altogether. Fortunately, Becca can count on her books to escape—to other times, other places, other people... 
Until she meets Max Herrera. He’s experienced loss, too, and his gorgeous, dark eyes see Becca the way no one else in school can.
As it turns out, kissing is a lot better in real life than on a page. But love and life are a lot more complicated in the real world...and happy endings aren't always guaranteed.
The companion novel to Love and Other Unknown Variables is an exploration of loss and regret, of kissing and love, and most importantly, a celebration of hope and discovering a life worth living again.
I haven't read Shannon Lee Alexander's debut Love and Other Unknown Variables and from what I've read, the two stories are intertwined. However, I was able to dive into this story without any trouble and I ended up really enjoying it.  Becca Hanson has become a ghost after her best friend died and has escaped into the world of books. When her school decides to put on a rendition of Romeo and Juliet, Becca finds herself signing up to be part of the stage crew. Not only is Romeo and Juliet a cheesy love story with a tragic ending, but it was also Charlotte's favorite play. Before she knows it, Becca is interacting with people and even reciting lines on stage. 

Life After Juliet is a story about making new friends and moving on past grief. At first, I was a bit hesitant going into the story because I've been in a crazy slump for the past couple of months and I didn't want to be bogged down by all the emotions. While this book definitely leaned on some heavy elements, it was so uplifting to be able to experience Becca's journey and how she changes her life after Charlotte's death.

As far as the characters themselves, it's hard to pick a favorite. Becca's love for reading is her safe haven and shield from the world. It was so interesting to see her grow from hiding behind her pages and counting the days in pages to experiencing all that high school has to offer. Her interactions with Max and his group of techies as well as the drammies was so much fun. I absolutely adored the development of the characters and the plot line as opening night for the show approaches

. I didn't even address Max and Becca's relationship and I don't have a word to describe it. Both of them have experienced the grief of losing someone and both have dealt with their grief in different ways. Seeing them grow together and build a friendship that turns to something more just made everything so heartwarming.

I didn't want grief to play a big part in this story because I was afraid it would turn the novel into a bit of a downer but grief plays such a vital role in the plot. Becca sees everything as with and without Charlotte and the story reveals how she takes that filter off to view life through the eyes of a normal teen. Life After Juliet has its deep moments but there are several moments of teenage fun and angst sprinkled in that makes it an overall well rounded read. 

3.5 out of 5 stars

Friday, July 1, 2016

June Wrap Up

Hello everyone! I can't believe that June is officially over because that means I'm officially out of high school and headed for college. I swear my mind is still not accepting that fact. If you guys have read my past posts you'd know that I'm currently in Taiwan and the past couple of weeks have been insane so I didn't get to read as much as I would have liked. Technically, I still read a lot but I feel like I haven't...anyway, let's get into the wrap up!


Summary (Linked to Reviews);
November 9 by Colleen Hoover - 4/5
A Stolen Kiss by Kelsey Keating - 3.5/5
Finding Dandelion by Lex Martin - 3/5
The Faerie Ring by Kiki Hamilton - 3/5
The Torn Wing by Kiki Hamilton - 3/5
The Seven Year King by Kiki Hamilton - 3/5
The Faerie Queen by Kiki Hamilton - 3/5

Total Pages: 2579
Reading Progress: 71/100

I did a pretty bad job with reviews this month but I promise I'll have a series review up soon for The Faerie Ring series by Kiki Hamilton as well as reviews for a couple other books. I still need to get my review for the Raven King up as well so that is going to be my top priority in the upcoming week. Summer is finally here which means more reading and I don't know where to begin! How was your month?