Review: House of Earth and Blood by Sarah J. Maas

Roller coaster ride doesn’t even come close to what this book felt like.

I was so excited to start a new series my Sarah Maas! I’ve loved her Throne of Glass and ACOTAR series so much, I had high hopes for this one. I knew this would give me all the feels, and I was right. Plenty of heart stopping moments mixed with a few teary ones had me at the edge of my seat. I wasn’t expecting to cry so soon in the series, but dang, tears were pouring down my cheeks.

I’ll admit the first 15 chapters, or so, were a struggle for me. I had to force myself to keep going. Sarah dropped a lot of information on us and it just didn’t grab me. I was used to the instant pull of ToG and ACOTAR. This didn’t compare. I didn’t help that I didn’t like Bryce at all in the beginning. Heck, it took me til half the book before she started to grow on me and the last section to actually like her.

That being said, I liked the interaction between Bryce and Hunt. The banter was fun to watch. And seeing them slowly heal and grow together was exactly what I was hoping for. But I wish there was more heat. For an adult book this lacked in that department. We got more f-bombs and adult talk, but this still felt like a NA book. I kept waiting and waiting for more adult situations but was left disappointed. Not that I only read for those but I expected more in an “adult” series. So here’s to hoping book two knocks our socks off. Among other things…😉

She put a hand on her chest. Over her heart. “I was waiting for you—in here.”

The amount of growth these characters went through, from the first page to the last, was enormous. That’s the type of story I like reading about. I was happy to see this first ARC all wrapped up neatly in this book. There was closure on a few things but it also was left opened enough to keep us coming back. I look forward to see what happens in the next chapter of their lives.


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Quick Review: The Lucky Ones by Tiffany Reisz

Holy cannoli!! What a wild ride! Creepy and twisted and oddly addicting. Tiffany knows how to wield the pen and create fantastical stories that grab you from the very first page. From the moment I opened this book, I was sucked in and couldn’t put it down. I found myself talking out loud, and often, in order to make heads or tails about what happened. And I should pat myself on the back, because I was right!! Well, my first gut feeling was right. The more I read, the more I changed my mind, but I kept coming back to my original thought. Yay, me!

Allison goes back to house she grew up in, only to confront her past ghosts. Something happened that made her leave and she is determined to find out what really happened. She meets up with all her past family and finds out that there were more secrets than she ever imagined. But she will stop at nothing to uncover what really happened.

This book made me uncomfortable, and not because it’s made up, but because it’s probably real. While the story itself is made up, the finer points I’m sure happened. Sick and twisted, but forgiving and hopeful. That is all I will say. I want you to go in this with an open and clear mind.

The Lucky Ones is a standalone that will keep you engaged and guessing till the very end. I hope you love it as much as I did! Plus it has a character, from another book, that many may get excited about. I know I did. And it made me love this book even more.


Buy The Lucky Ones

Review: The Salt House by Lisa Duffy


Full of beauty and sorrow at the same time.  Heartbreaking but also uplifting.  A tale of despair yet also one of hope.  All of these things together make this an unforgettable story.

Hope and Jack have a great life.  They have three beautiful daughters, a nice home, a successful business.  Happiness.  But then tragedy strikes. And they are left with just two daughters.  Each family member copes, or doesn’t, in their own way.

A year later, they are at a standstill.  Time has put distance between them and their grief, but they haven’t really moved on.  Jack loses himself in his lobster fishing.  Hope loses herself in the memories of her lost daughter.  And the younger girls just go on being kids.

Everything comes to a head when a forgotten part of Jack’s past shows up at their door.  High school rivalries are reignited, this time with adult consequences.  Through it all Hope and Jack struggle to move past their grief and save their family.

Tragedies happen, families have to find ways to deal with them.   Told from alternating perspectives, this book takes us deep inside one family’s grief and their attempts to overcome it.  Each family member is dealing with their own struggles along with the collective struggle of the family.  It’s beautifully written, almost poetically so.  A story I won’t soon forget!


Buy It Now:  The Salt House


Review: Small Great Things by Jodi Picoult


In spite of the wide range of tastes we Muses have in books, there have been several times two of us have read & reviewed the same book. But I do believe this may be the first threepeat.  And it’s one that’s well worthy of that distinction.

A nurse.  A new father. An up and coming attorney.  After the unexpected death of a newborn, their paths cross in a most unfortunate way.  Ruth has worked hard to get where she is, and as a much respected nurse she never expected to be on trial for murder.  But that’s just what happens when the white supremacist parents decide that she alone is responsible for the death of their baby.  Her only hope is Kennedy, a still wet-behind-the-ears public defender who has never defended a murder case.

If you’re interested in a story that just sticks to the plot outlined above, this is not the book for you.  But if you’re interested in something that goes deeper, to the very core of what we believe, then you’ll be pulled in from the very first page.  Whether you agree with the ideas presented by the author or not, it will no doubt make you question everything you believe.

Jodi Picoult never ceases to amaze me.  And she never shies away from controversial issues, taking them and weaving a story so compelling that you can’t put it down.  This one is no exception.  And as an aside, the Audible version of this one was outstanding with different narrators bringing the main characters to life for better or for worse.  A timely story from one of the best!


Buy It Now:  Small Great Things

New Releases for Dec 10, 2013

This is a great week for new releases. I’m grabbing quite a few of them myself.

18528454A Beautiful Wedding: A Novella (Beautiful Disaster) I am so excited for this one!!!!!! Since I’m obsessed with Beautiful Disaster and Walking Disaster, I am totally grabbing this one. In fact, I’m probably reading it right now, as you read this. And I’m sure it’s awesome. 🙂

17987085True: 11 (New Species) I must admit, I love love love this series!!! And it’s not just for the covers, although, those are pretty to look at. 🙂

17446757Avoiding Temptation
This actually released early last night. Super excited!!! It seems like I’ve been waiting forever for this book to come out! We left off at a bit of a crossroads, after the last one, and I’m dying to know what Lexi does now. Again, this will be read today as well. I hope nothing major happens in the world. I’m going to be busy.

18210033Elect (Eagle Elite)
I read this book, and WOW!!! What a ride this was! My review will be on Friday, but I will say that my emotions were in Heaven over this one. This books was made for me. 🙂

17797381Innocence: A Novel This book has it all, mystery, suspense, and love. Sounds like a fantastic book!! I know a few of the muses will be sitting and chatting about this one. 🙂

18105102Reviving Izabel (In the Company of Killers)
I totally forgot this one was out!! This is the second book in the In the Company of Killers series. I read Killing Sarai and was shocked at how much I liked it. Not my usual read, but I’m happy to be able to snag the second book. I really wanna know what’s going to happen with Victor and Sarai/Izabel. 🙂Killing Sarai (In the Company of Killers)is on sale for only 99 cents, til Dec 15. So I’d grab it now, if I were you. 🙂

Well I hope you found one or two, or possibly five books that caught your eye.

Happy New Release Day!!!!


Review: Our Picnics in the Sun by Morag Joss

20131129-122346.jpgA man trapped both physically and mentally after a debilitating stroke. His wife resentful and overwhelmed by his needs. A distant son who refuses to return to the home he worked so hard to escape. A harsh, unforgiving landscape. And two strangers who mysteriously appear at their doorstep one night. Morag Joss has given us a cast of characters worthy of a fulfilling, suspenseful story.

Howard and his wife, Deborah, are simple, eccentric country people who insist on living off the land and shun many modern conveniences. Their son Adam escaped his sheltered upbringing to become a successful businessman. Howard loves nothing more than making pottery and practicing yoga while Deborah spends her time weaving and tending to her home and garden. They also run a not-so-successful bed and breakfast. When Howard suffers a stroke and becomes completely dependent on Deborah for his most basic needs, feelings begin to change and long buried resentments rise to the surface. Both Howard and Deborah are desperate for the attention and affection of Adam. But time and again they are disappointed by his unfulfilled promises of a long past due visit. Complicating matters is a lingering guest, Theo. As Deborah’s relationship with Theo begins to grow, she starts to view him as a replacement for her absent son. However, dark thoughts soon start to cloud her judgment as she begins to question everything she thought her life has stood for up to this point.

This book was described to me as a psychological thriller, and it definitely had me on the edge of my seat waiting for “it” to happen. The author wove a story full of such secret and suspense that I just knew at any moment the bottom was going to fall out. Although I caught on to one of the cliffhangers at about three quarters of the way through the book, her writing is so beautifully lyrical and descriptive that I wanted to keep reading just for the pleasure of the journey. The ending did not disappoint me and all of my questions were answered, although I would describe this book as more of a suspenseful drama than a psychological thriller. A good read!


Buy it Now: Our Picnics in the Sun: A Novel