Feverborn

Feverborn by Karen Marie Moning
Published by Dell on November 29th 2016
Genres: urban fantasy
Pages: 391
Goodreads

In Karen Marie Moning s latest installment of the epic Fever series, Mac, Barrons, Ryodan, and Jada are back and the stakes have never been higher or the chemistry hotter. Hurtling us into a realm of labyrinthine intrigue and consummate seduction, Feverborn is a riveting tale of ancient evil, lust, betrayal, forgiveness, and the redemptive power of love. When the immortal Fae destroyed the ancient wall dividing the worlds of Man and Faery, the very fabric of the universe was damaged, and now Earth is vanishing bit by bit. Only the long-lost Song of Making a haunting, dangerous melody that is the source of life itself can save the planet. But those who seek the mythic song must contend with old wounds and new enemies, passions that burn hot and hunger for vengeance that runs deep.

The challenges are many: the Keltar at war with nine immortals who have secretly ruled Dublin for eons, Mac and Jada hunted by the masses, the Seelie queen nowhere to be found, and the most powerful Unseelie prince in all creation determined to rule both Fae and Man. Now the task of solving the ancient riddle of the Song of Making falls to a band of deadly warriors divided among and within themselves. Once a normal city possessing a touch of ancient magic, Dublin is now a treacherously magical city with only a touch of normal. And on those war-torn streets, Mac will come face-to-face with her most savage enemy yet: herself.

I don’t remember much of Feverborn, and that’s not because it was bad, but because it was such a build up to what was coming that I wanted to get to the end to figure out what it all meant. The fact that I was able to rush through it without getting bored is a testament to how good it was.

I think this was actually the first book in the entire series where I didn’t mind Mac at all. She became a fully realized character to me. Her decisions made sense, her attitude made sense, it all fit for me finally. Only took me until the end of the series. I got a better sense of Jada too, and wasn’t as thrown off by the whole Dani fiasco.

I liked that you were being fed a decent chunk of backstory while also building up some action. It’s definitely a middle book, but it’s a good one. I could feel that the end of the series was coming in this book, but I was excited to see how it played out.

I know this isn’t much, but I didn’t really have much to say about it, honestly. Decent overall!

One StarOne StarOne StarHalf a Star

Happier Thinking

Happier Thinking by Lana Grace Riva
Published by Independently published on February 11th 2018
Genres: non-fiction
Pages: 52
Goodreads

Changing how you think is possible. I wasn't always so sure that was true until I experienced it myself, but I know now we don't have to just accept unhappiness. Not always anyway. This book is my collection of tips and suggestions that have helped me achieve happier thinking. It's sort of a gym for my mind. I'd love to tell you it was easier than the real gym but well… it's not really. It takes time, effort, and practice but it's absolutely well worth the rewards.

I received this book in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review. Pinky swear!

When Happier Thinking came in the mail, I was a little skeptical. I thought, “It’s a tiny book, how could this possibly be that useful.”

If you go into this book thinking you’re going to have loads and loads of information tossed at you so you can immediately change your life, you’ll be disappointed. The beauty of this book isn’t in the fact that it’s offering you tons of ways to help you think happier, but that it’s offering you concrete ways to do so. It almost made me feel like someone was giving me little reminders on good habits to adopt.

The thing with it being so short, too, is that the information is easily digestible. You can choose to read it all in one sitting, like I did, or to break it up by chapter and start with each piece of information. It makes the process of “change” a little less overwhelming, which I greatly appreciated. Sometimes self-help books are so gigantic I can’t even take them off the shelf for fear of failing.

If you like quick reads chalk full of quirky humour, a funny friend jumping off the page to offer you sage advice, and a fast pick-me-up when you’re feeling down, Happier Thinking is it. I find myself flipping through it randomly when I’m feeling down, just to bring a smile to my face for a minute or two. And it works.

One StarOne StarOne StarOne Star

Burned

Burned (Fever #7) by Karen Marie Moning
Published by Dell on November 24th 2015
Genres: urban fantasy
Pages: 465
Goodreads

It’s easy to walk away from lies. Power is another thing.

MacKayla Lane would do anything to save the home she loves. A gifted sidhe-seer, she’s already fought and defeated the deadly Sinsar Dubh—an ancient book of terrible evil—yet its hold on her has never been stronger.

When the wall that protected humans from the seductive, insatiable Fae was destroyed on Halloween, long-imprisoned immortals ravaged the planet. Now Dublin is a war zone with factions battling for control. As the city heats up and the ice left by the Hoar Frost King melts, tempers flare, passions run red-hot, and dangerous lines get crossed.

Seelie and Unseelie vie for power against nine ancient immortals who have governed Dublin for millennia; a rival band of sidhe-seers invades the city, determined to claim it for their own; Mac’s former protégé and best friend, Dani “Mega” O’Malley, is now her fierce enemy; and even more urgent, Highland druid Christian MacKeltar has been captured by the Crimson Hag and is being driven deeper into Unseelie madness with each passing day. The only one Mac can depend on is the powerful, dangerous immortal Jericho Barrons, but even their fiery bond is tested by betrayal.

It’s a world where staying alive is a constant struggle, the line between good and evil gets blurred, and every alliance comes at a price. In an epic battle against dark forces, Mac must decide who she can trust, and what her survival is ultimately worth.

Burned is book #7 in the Fever series. It’s taken me a bit, but I’m slowly making my way towards the end. I’m happy and sad for this series to end.

Happy because I’d like to find out how it all ends. Also happy because I can move on to some of my other books taking up precious space on my shelves.

Sad because I’ve been in this world so long and I’ll be sad to see it go.

Burned was a decent filler book. And by filler, I don’t mean a lot isn’t happening. There is. It’s just that I know it’s all a build up for the books that are to come. And that’s okay. Some books are meant to be middle books. It was still very entertaining, especially since there was a little more…levity to this one than the most recent (Iced was humorous because of Dani, but still felt dark). I mean, Mac accidentally goes invisible and uses this time to spy on those around her. How could that not be funny.

All in all, a decent book. It’s made me excited for Feverborn.

Now there will be spoilers ahead.

Spoilers I tell you.

Spoilers.

At the end of Iced, Mac chased Dani into the silvers. When Dani comes back out to Dublin, it’s been five odd years for her, whereas it’s been a couple of weeks in human land. Although you don’t know this in the beginning. Dani is lost, Mac can’t go after her, everyone’s looking for her, and then there’s this new badass in town named Jada. You know where I’m going with this. We find out that Jada is Dani, and I wasn’t sure how to feel about it. Because I know that there was an uproar over Dani being so young and lusted after in Iced, I feel like this was an easy way to grow Dani up fast, but it still felt really weird. I still have a huge issue with the whole Dani/Mac fight thing, so that also might be colouring my view of the scenario a little. I technically understand the backstory on why Dani turns into Jada, I just wish it could have been done a little better.

The only other issue I have here is with the scene that is used as a foreword for the book. It’s the scene where Jericho first visited Mac in the room she was staying in when she first came to Dublin. In the original scene we read in Darkfever, they argue a bit and then he leaves. In this “real” scene, we find out that Mac and Jericho actually had hot steamy sex, but Mac wasn’t ready for it so Jericho suppressed the memory so she wouldn’t hate him. There’s this entire build up to her finding out that he did this at the beginning of the book, then she finds out at the worst possible moment, is obviously pissed, then when he explains his reasoning, she basically just accepts it. Like, okay fine, you understand why he did what he did. But the build up to this was completely unnecessary if it was just going to be accepted. Was it to show how strong she’s gotten? How their relationship has changed? Both of those points have been proven through other means in the books.

Anyway, spoilers over. That’s all I have to say about Burned!

One StarOne StarOne Star

Your Walls

The walls, they talk

If you care to listen

I choose to

Run my hand through the words

My fingertips

Picking up little letters

They mean nothing separated,

But together tell a story

Loss

Love

Hope

Regret

What story is etched on your walls?

What letters will my fingers pick up

As they trail across your skin

Will it be in a language I understand

Or will your story remain a secret,

Too confusing for me to comprehend

Iced

Iced (Fever, #6) by Karen Marie Moning
Published by Dell on February 25th 2014
Genres: urban fantasy
Pages: 490
Goodreads

The year is 1 AWC—After the Wall Crash. The Fae are free and hunting us. It’s a war zone out there, and no two days are alike. I’m Dani O’Malley, the chaos-filled streets of Dublin are my home, and there’s no place I’d rather be.

Dani “Mega” O’Malley plays by her own set of rules—and in a world overrun by Dark Fae, her biggest rule is: Do what it takes to survive. Possessing rare talents and the all-powerful Sword of Light, Dani is more than equipped for the task. In fact, she’s one of the rare humans who can defend themselves against the Unseelie. But now, amid the pandemonium, her greatest gifts have turned into serious liabilities.

Dani’s ex–best friend, MacKayla Lane, wants her dead, the terrifying Unseelie princes have put a price on her head, and Inspector Jayne, the head of the police force, is after her sword and will stop at nothing to get it. What’s more, people are being mysteriously frozen to death all over the city, encased on the spot in sub-zero, icy tableaux.

When Dublin’s most seductive nightclub gets blanketed in hoarfrost, Dani finds herself at the mercy of Ryodan, the club’s ruthless, immortal owner. He needs her quick wit and exceptional skill to figure out what’s freezing Fae and humans dead in their tracks—and Ryodan will do anything to ensure her compliance.

Dodging bullets, fangs, and fists, Dani must strike treacherous bargains and make desperate alliances to save her beloved Dublin—before everything and everyone in it gets iced.

I have to say, I completely ate my words when I read Iced. I was SO nervous about reading it because I haven’t liked Dani up until this point and I knew the entire book was from her POV. Although the dudes and the fecks got reeeeaalll annoying, I was able to look past it.

I enjoyed the plot. It was interesting and kept me guessing the entire time. I was never sure how it was going to pan out, which was nice.

The characters gave me a bit of an issue, although not the same issues some people have. I know a LOT of people have an issue with the guys being inappropriate towards Dani, and maybe I’m sick and twisted, but I don’t see the problem (mostly) that everyone seemed to have. Yes, Dani is a 14 year old girl. Yes, Ryodan is, like, a million years old and Christian is in his 20s. But I think a lot of people missed some points here:

  1. Dani isn’t a typical 14 year old, she’s been through a lot of shit, so of course the guys are going to treat her like an adult.
  2. Christian is turning into a death-by-sex fae so of COURSE he’s going to have messed up thoughts. Although his character I liked the least in this, I still understood what was going on.
  3. NO ONE HAS SEX.

I liked Ryodan throughout this, but his character was a little hard to get a read on. Maybe it’s just me, but I felt like he was a lot…warmer? nicer?… in the other books. He’s a tough guy, I get that, but I didn’t think he was THAT big of a dick, and he was a pretty big one here. Some of it was necessary, like when Dani threatens his authority in his club, but some of it just felt out of character for him.

And I didn’t really like Jo before Iced anyway, but Jebus H. Christian, she’s an idiot. The man keeps you prisoner more or less to keep Dani in line, then starts sleeping with you, and you DON’T assume there’s a hidden agenda there?! I am sorry, but if she gets taken out by someone, I won’t be mad.

Oh, and I hope Dancer sticks around for a bit. I want to know more about him. He seems like a good match for Dani.

I’m curious to see where the series goes now, because I know KMM had some backlash over this book and the rest aren’t Dani-oriented.

 

One StarOne StarOne StarOne StarHalf a Star

Shadowfever

Shadowfever by Karen Marie Moning
Published by Dell on August 30th 2011
Genres: urban fantasy
Pages: 671
Goodreads

“Evil is a completely different creature, Mac. Evil is bad that believes it’s good.” — MacKayla Lane was just a child when she and her sister, Alina, were given up for adoption and banished from Ireland forever. — Twenty years later, Alina is dead and Mac has returned to the country that expelled them to hunt her sister’s murderer. But after discovering that she descends from a bloodline both gifted and cursed, Mac is plunged into a secret history: an ancient conflict between humans and immortals who have lived concealed among us for thousands of years.

What follows is a shocking chain of events with devastating consequences, and now Mac struggles to cope with grief while continuing her mission to acquire and control the Sinsar Dubh -- a book of dark, forbidden magic scribed by the mythical Unseelie King, containing the power to create and destroy worlds.

In an epic battle between humans and Fae, the hunter becomes the hunted when the Sinsar Dubh turns on Mac and begins mowing a deadly path through those she loves.

Who can she turn to? Who can she trust? Who is the woman haunting her dreams? More important, who is Mac herself and what is the destiny she glimpses in the black and crimson designs of an ancient tarot card?

From the luxury of the Lord Master’s penthouse to the sordid depths of an Unseelie nightclub, from the erotic bed of her lover to the terrifying bed of the Unseelie King, Mac’s journey will force her to face the truth of her exile, and to make a choice that will either save the world . . . or destroy it.

I was so mixed about Shadowfever when I started reading it. I almost put the book down in the beginning because I was just SO fed up with Mac and her attitude. She went off the freaking deep end and it didn’t make sense to me. The context made sense, but it seemed very condensed, like what happened in the beginning of the book could have been an entire other book to show us the transition in how she was thinking, but it was crammed into a couple of pages instead so it didn’t feel real.

But after we got over that small hurdle, I really liked the plot. This was my favourite book in the series thus far. It was intriguing, I wanted to know what happened, there was sexual tension, there was regular tension, it was fantastic. I couldn’t put it down.

I’m a little sad that the series continues, because I think this would have been the perfect ending to it. It wouldn’t have been cleanly wrapped up, but it would have made sense within the tone of the series. I’m also kind of not looking forward to reading Iced because Dani is not even close to one of my favourite characters. I find the way she talks very annoying, although that might just be because I’m old and grouchy now.

Hopefully the series continues to get better now that I think I’ve found my stride. *fingers crossed*

One StarOne StarOne StarOne Star

April Wrap-Up

Oh lordy. I’m not even going to try and explain April to anyone. I feel like it was about two days long.

I didn’t end up putting any reviews out for April, although I did do some writing and announced my personal challenge to myself. Which I’ve stuck to so far (woot woot)!

April was mostly a month of self reflection, which is necessary. I might not have read a lot, but it was still a really good month.

How was your April?

That Place Within

It’s like this ocean that some people find themselves in. You aren’t entirely sure how you get there, but once you’re there, you are there. There’s no way out, no land off in the distance. All you can do is float. Lay back, look at the beautiful sky, and float. You know the ocean isn’t always going to be calm, so you float and you look at the beautiful sky and you wait.

At some point while you’re floating, the waves pick up a little bit. They might swell over your face every now and then, but you can still float. That small part of your brain that’s all about survival starts to panic a little, but you overpower it. You are okay, you can do this, the waves will calm. And they do.

For awhile.

At some point, very suddenly, the waves pick up. And just as suddenly you are wrenched beneath the surface, being held just below by some unseen force. You can see the beautiful sky but it’s clouded and murky now. The first time this happens, you panic. Sheer, utter panic. You struggled, you fought, but it exhausted you more. So you float.

And now you’ve done this before. Too many times to count. You know if you hold your breath long enough, whatever is holding you under will let you go. But you don’t know how long that’ll be, how long you’ll have to float just under that happy feeling, unable to reach it. Maybe this is the time your breath gives out first. Maybe this is the time you don’t finally float back to the surface.

But you do.

You always do.

Series Binge 2018

Yes yes. I am aware it’s the end of April at this point. But I organized my bookshelf on Sunday and had a super-stupendous idea.

The Challenge

For the remainder of 2018, I’m only going to focus on reading the series I have on my shelves already. By proxy, this means I’m only allowing myself to buy books that pertain to the CURRENT series’ I have.

Exception: my birthday. I get a pass for my birthday. Don’t argue with me. I’m literally making the rules.

The Reason

Apparently most of my reading interests fall in the land of series. But I have a habit of reading the first one, getting sidetracked by several other hundred books, forgetting what happened in the first book, and finding myself not as pulled to the series again. Even if I loved the first book.

I’m going to combat this by reading series’ in full. It started with my binge of the Fever series. I owned the first two, had only read the first, and watched as they sat on my shelf. I wanted to pick up the second one but I couldn’t remember what happened in the first. I’m not a huge fan of rereading, especially for every single series I own.

I have a handful of series that I want to read that I’ve just put off, but I’m changing that this year. No more shiny new books capturing my attention and distracting me. No more excuses for not remembering the first book. No more excuses period.

The Issue

I know that some of the series I’m really looking forward to aren’t finished yet. I don’t want to skip these, so I’m okay reading up to the currently published book. I’m hoping that if I read more than one book in the series (assuming there’s currently more than one) will help me with the forgetting issue.

The Caveat

I am aware series burnout is a thing. If this happens, which I hope it doesn’t, I am allowed to take a small break. I do have a couple of single books on my shelf that I can use to break up my binges.

The Outcome

I’m hoping this makes me feel 1) less guilty about buying new books if I’ve already read most of my current books, 2) helps clear my shelves off a bit, and 3) stops me from buying alllll the books in a series so they’ll match while only having read the first.

Alright, that’s the challenge. Join in if you want!

March 2018 Wrap-Up

March has been a slower month, reading wise. And also review wise. Netflix and writing both took over my life for March. Which I’m not exactly complaining about, it just means my priorities shifted a bit.

What I Watched This Month:

I started watching The 100 on Netflix again this month. I love the concept of the show, but I just can’t stand some of the characters (looking at you, Clarke). I promptly had to stop watching it, though, as I spoiled something for myself regarding my favourite character. So now I have to figure out something else to watch.

What I Listened to This Month:

For some reason this month really got me into early 2000s hard rock. I don’t know if it’s because the weather has been warmer and it’s usually my go-to sunny driving music, or if it’s just because it makes me feel good and I’m out of the dumps now, but it’s been great. I refound my love for Jimmy Eat World.

What I Read This Month:

  1. [6 Mar] Bloodfever by Karen Marie Moning ★★★½
  2. [20 Mar] Faefever by Karen Marie Moning ★★★★
  3. [27 Mar] Dreamfever (Fever, #4) by Karen Marie Moning ★★★★½

So that’s my March in a nutshell! How was your month?