This Chick Read: Crooked Kingdom by Leigh Bardugo

Crooked Kingdom gets a very quick start as Kaz and his crew come up with a plan to save Inej, who at the end of Six of Crows was taken hostage by Wylans father Van Eck. There is a clear cut line of good and evil in Crooked Kingdom with Kaz, Nina, Matthias, Jesper, Wylan and Inej all cast on the side of good, even though they are the best of the worst part of Ketterdam. Van Eck is an easy villain in comparison with Wylan who is the angel among thieves, and the easiest to identify with in the crew. Kaz, as the mastermind behind all of their plans plays puppeteer to all of their marionettes. Even as I tried to figure out the plans direction and guess as to the outcome it would change on a dime and I would try to read faster to play catch up. Crooked Kingdom had a beginning, middle and end I just didn’t end up where I thought the path was leading and it was wonderful!

Crooked Kingdom showed an advancement in the relationship of all of the players. Kaz and Inej, Wylan and Jesper, Nina and Matthias all grew as individuals but also as couples. There wasn’t any time for more than a kiss here and there but the emotions behind those kisses were long drawn out and well thought. I was not disappointed in the final outcome to any of these players parts, although I did have a couple of teary moments. We got to know each of them and their reasons behind their actions so that even if I didn’t agree morally with what I thought they were doing I did understand why. Bardugo did a great job of making a band of miscreants honorable and likable. I rooted for them to outsmart their opponents and enjoyed the exchange of wits.

I know that I have not said anything about the plot of this book. I really feel that whatever I have to say can not do the intricacies of this plot any justice. All I can say is that I loved getting to know all of these characters and enjoyed reading their story.

One last thought on the city of Ketterdam. I am glad that it is a fictional destination. I would fear for any tourist who docked their ship in the bay where a sign reading Enter Ye At Your own Risk No Mourners, No Funerals greets their gaze. ❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️

Crooked Kingdom

Click this link to purchase! Crooked Kingdom: A Sequel to Six of Crows

Copyright 2018 Deborah Kehoe The Reading Chick All Rights Reserved.


Do You Want to Start a Scandal (Castles Ever After) by Tessa Dare

Charlotte Highwood is blessed with a mother who loves her very much, but that same mother is also determined to see her married well, throwing her into one awkward situation after another. Charlotte is determined that her mother’s newest prospect will not end up being forced to marry her because her mother has maneuvered a “situation”. When Charlotte sneaks away to have a word with Piers Brandon, Lord Granville, and warn him, I and Piers are immediately charmed by her efforts. Charlotte, in her haste to make him aware that she is not trying to trap him, tells him she’d never find him attractive and he’s not her type. He’s intrigued and I’m laughing at the clever dialog and scene that Tessa Dare has written. The scene is not unusual, but she imbues Charlotte with a naive exuberance that you can’t help but find charming, and Piers definitely does.

As I was reading this novel, I realized that I had actually read Say Yes to the Marquess, the sequel to this one where Rafe, Piers’ brother, falls in love with Piers’ fiancee of many years. Say Yes.. was my first Tessa Dare novel in quite awhile and I think it’s fate that another blogger recommended I read Do You Want to Start a Scandal, the next in the series. That moment of recognition, when Piers’ identity is revealed along with the fact that his brother stole his last fiancee, made Piers immediately interesting. Tying those two histories together made his rather cool demeanor have meaning. That demeanor was a mask for his activities, and the fact that he dropped that mask for Charlotte made me like him for her.

This was a fun novel, and the fact that I fell into the plot so easily showed Tessa Dare’s talent for weaving a charming romantic tale. ❤️❤️❤️❤️

Do You Want Click this link to purchase! Do You Want to Start a Scandal (Castles Ever After) Copyright 2018 Deborah Kehoe The Reading Chick All Rights Reserved

This Chick Read: Need You Now (A Mile High Romance #1) by Nicole Helm

The town of Gracely, Colorado has been dying ever since the Evans mining company closed down, decimating the businesses in town. Brandon Evans and his brother Will are trying to atone for their father’s mistakes by running their outdoor company in Gracely, but the townspeople won’t support their efforts, not being able to forgive them for having the Evans name. They hire Lilly Preston as their PR person, hoping she will be able to make inroads with the people in Gracely. Immediately she is able to do what they couldn’t and Brandon has a hard time acknowledging her efforts. As they work together, their acrimonious relationship starts to evolve into attraction.

This is a really tough romance to review because both Brandon and Lilly were so prickly. As I learned why Brandon felt so responsible for the town of Gracely I warmed up to him slightly. Lilly was also a bit standoffish and was obviously out of her element, a city girl living and working for an outdoors company. She had sass, which I loved, but that sass turned into a cold bitchiness that was hard for me to forgive. These two characters had so much to learn about themselves and each other and it was only because of the conflict at the end of the book that they even grew through that difficulty. I loved the scene at the end of the book where they had a heart felt conversation that was just so real… but then their story ended and I felt like I needed to see more of their growth as a couple to fall in love with them.

I’m conflicted. I liked the story up until a certain point in the book and then the conflict hit and my stomach sank. Then there was the most awesome conversation and I felt uplifted. Did I love it for every moment? No. Did I hate it? No. ❤️❤️❤️

Need You Now Click this link to purchase! Need You Now (A Mile High Romance) Copyright 2018 Deborah Kehoe The Reading Chick All Rights Reserved

This Chicks Sunday Commentary: A Book Signing with Patricia Briggs and Anne Bishop

When I was asked if I wanted to drive three hours to spend an hour listening to Patricia Briggs and Anne Bishop talk about their new releases Burn Bright and Lake Silence I said, “Absolutely!”. Patricia Briggs’s Mercy Thompson is one of my favorite fictional heroines and her Alpha and Omega series feeds my need for paranormal mysteries. The thought of spending an hour listening to her talk and possibly having a question answered was too good to pass up. Anne Bishop, author of The Others series and Written in Red, was my 2017 surprise find and quickly moved to the top of my list of great Urban Fantasy series. Who wouldn’t want to see the women behind these well crafted series?!!

My sister, myself, and a friend spent Friday afternoon driving to Lexington, Kentucky for the last stop on their joint tour. Both of their new books had release dates last week and I’m guessing decided to join forces to meet the masses. I’m not sure what I was expecting when we got to the Joseph Beth Booksellers Friday evening, but the next hour and a half was really entertaining. I took some notes so I could relay some of the questions asked and their answers, but please bear in mind that I’m taking a little bit of leeway with their answers, but the meat of them is all Patricia Briggs and Anne Bishop.

Patricia and Anne posed

The picture above shows Patricia Briggs on the left and Anne Bishop on the right. The evening started off with each of them reading most of the first chapter of each of their books Burn Bright (Patricia Briggs) and Lake Silence (Anne Bishop). I have read each of the books already and had my own vision and internal voice to these characters, but it was really interesting to hear the people who created them speak their thoughts. Interestingly, Anne Bishop who was a little more reserved in person, was very animated and gave a different voice to each character she read. Patrica Briggs who was very animated and personable in person, did a pretty straightforward read of Burn Bright. Do they like reading their books out loud to a room full of people? I’d be pretty embarassed to do so myself so I was impressed they did such a good job at it.

After they finished reading they stood up and engaged the crowd. They would answer our questions but not until the whole room howled like a wolf. Appropriate to both of their series, but the Arooo! that everyone belted out came directly from our own little Lakeside Courtyard. I pictured little wolf Sam from Written in Red howling away at Meg as I’m sure a lot of other people did as well. That howl certainly broke the ice!

Questions & Answers:

->PB- Is there ever going to be a time when Mercy, Adam, Anna and Charles join together in a book to fight against evil?  Probably not but they may all be in a short story together. PB said she has read quite a few “reunion” books and sometimes they don’t seem to work out too well. So she’s hesitant to do so herself.

->AB- Will you visit the Black Jewel world again? Patricia Briggs broke in all excited and said she has actually read the bones of a story by Anne set in that world, but Anne was quick to say that she wasn’t sure if it will grow into a full story.  (It sounded to me like she didn’t want to make any promises? I haven’t read the Black Jewel series myself but there were a LOT of those fans in the audience.)

-> PB- Does she have a preference for writing in first or third person? I thought her answer was really interesting. PB said that when she first started writing Mercy’s stories she wrote in first person but we may have noticed that change in more recent books. She claimed she “cheated” by allowing us to see through another characters eyes. (I think that technique works really well because Mercy became more fleshed out and through Adam’s eyes I connected better with her.)

->AB- What is Anne’s favorite book? (There were a lot of groans in the audience about this question. A hard one to answer!) Anne said that she’d go back to Moon of Three Rings by Andre Norton because it was the first book she read that she realized that you could have emotional characters set in a fictional world.

->PB- How difficult is it to want to put a character in a book but can’t find a place for them? She answered that Charles was one of those characters. She knew so much about him, who he was and his back ground but he didn’t fit into a 100,000 word novel. She told him to back off and she’d find a place for him. Ultimately that’s why she wrote Alpha and Omega. Her editor asked for a novella and when she said she was writing about Charles her editor was worried. After she read it she asked for him to have his own series. She did say that she wished, now, that she hadn’t made him so powerful because it was easier for her to write characters who were the underdogs. He definitely isn’t!

->AB- Is she every going to go back to Meg and Simon? (I would imagine she gets asked this question ALOT because her answer was very straightforward.) That story arc was completed with Etched in Bone. She’s released Lake Silence this year and then she has Wild Country coming out next year about the town of Bennett.

->PB- (strange person alert!) What happens if someone were to donate an organ and then become a werewolf? (To give her credit Patricia Briggs gave a straight answer.) If it’s before they become a werewolf they will still not have that organ, if it’s after then their organ will grow back. (The same woman later went back to a different version of this question by asking how Charles still has pierced ears if that’s the case? Patricia responded “the same reason why he can shift and have clo5es on when no other werewolf can. He’s Charles.)

->PB- (I asked my question without trying to give anyone in the crowd any spoilers.) Online, there seems to be a lot of talk about a scene in Burn Bright where Anna and Charles are having a conversation about Mercy and Bran’s relationship… Patricia totally understood where I was going and also tried to answer without giving any spoilers. She said, She knew right from the start that those were Bran’s feelings and that now was the time that she needed to reveal that fact. It will not change anything about their relationship or future books. She said that a lot of readers have asked for a book about Bran but she said that we wouldn’t like him if she gave it to us. He is not a very nice guy. (INTERESTING!)

->AB- (my question to Anne Bishop) I have read The Others and listened to the audiobooks as well, when she is writing how does she layer the characters so well? Simon is a wolf and speaks in a growly wolf-like voice. The next time I read it, I notice other wolf-like attributes. Does she write the narrative and then go back and fill in the attributes? She very emphatically said NO. She has lived with these characters for a long time. Has gone to the grocery store and asked Simon if he likes carrots (she makes a scrunchy eww face). When she writes, all that layering is put in as she writes it the first time. She doesn’t have to go back and do it. (Wow!!)

These were only some of the questions asked and answered and I’ll admit to getting caught up in the moment and forgetting to write things down. When you listen to an author speak about their characters and the world they built it’s as if they are talking about real people. As Anne said, she went grocery shopping with Simon. I can only believe that this is why I love their characters so much. They are so real!

I hope you enjoyed reading about my Friday night with Patricia Briggs and Anne Bishop. Were you lucky enough to go to one of their book signings? If so, I’d love to hear your thoughts and any fascinating questions and answers!

If you would like to read my review of Burn Bright and Lake Silence please click on the title of each book!

To purchase Burn Bright click the link. Burn Bright (Alpha and Omega)

To purchase Lake Silence click the link. Lake Silence (World of the Others, The)

Signed books

This Chick Read: Ever the Hunted (A Clash of Kingdoms #1) by Erin Summerill

Britta Flannery is the daughter of a Bounty Hunter to the King. She grows up learning how to hunt and catch not only animals but criminals alongside Cohen who is apprenticing with her father. As they grow up, she falls in love with Cohen but he is destined to replace her father in the privileged spot as Bounty Hunter. When her father is off on a job, he is murdered, leaving Britta alone in the cabin she lived in with her father. Starving, she illegally hunts on the King’s land and is caught. Thrown in the dungeon, she is given a choice. Die for poaching or hunt her father’s killer. It sounds like an easy choice, but Britta wavers because she is told all evidence points to her one time friend Cohen. Believing their evidence she begins the hunt, which turns into a journey of discovery and learns more about herself than what she’d imagined.

Ever the Hunted was beautiful on the outside and on the inside. Seriously, the cover is gorgeous and the book was gorgeously written. The story felt like a hybrid Fairy Tale – Fantasy novel and the words on the page were written lyrically helping create that feel. Taking place mostly in a forest the story had elements of Red Riding Hood, Sleeping Beauty, and Snow White, however it was not a copy or re-imagining of any of those novels, but a unique story with only the feeling of a fairy tale element. As with other  fairy-tale and fantasy novels I’ve really enjoyed, this was more than just a love story, it was an action adventure novel with magical realism. Our heroine, Britta, comes to a realization about her feelings for Cohen, but also discovers the depths of power hidden within herself.

Having said all of these wonderful things, was the book perfect? It was perfect up to a point. I will not spoil the ending, but I will say that there was an unexpected twist that I still can’t decide if I liked or not. It felt like the author decided at the very end to turn this into a series when it could’ve very easily been a stand alone novel. That one twist took me out of the world this author created and made me go.. Huh. So because of that, I’m only giving this novel 4 hearts. Until that twist, I was enraptured by the story and world and would’ve given it a higher rating. ❤️❤️❤️❤️

Ever the Hunted

Click this link to purchase! Ever the Hunted (A Clash of Kingdoms Novel)

Copyright 2018 Deborah Kehoe The Reading Chick All Rights Reserved

This Chick Read: Lies Jane Austen Told Me by Julie Wright (Audio review)

Emma seems to have it all. She’s a successful marketing officer for a big name gym and has a gorgeous boyfriend who wants to bring her home to meet his parents. She is also obsessed with Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice. So that trip to visit her boyfriends parents turns into a wedding proposal…. in her own head. When that turns out to not be true, she feels betrayed by Jane and the now ex-boyfriend and throws herself into her job 24/7. When her company hires a consultant, she’s dismayed to find out it’s her ex’s brother Lucas. Who turns out to be nothing like his brother. He’s not only handsome but gives away all of his free time to those more unfortunate than he. When Lucas and Emma travel together on business they get to know each other better and she falls a little bit in like with him. But… he keeps trying to get her back together with his brother!

I listened to Lies Jane Austen Told Me, which is narrated by Justine Eyre (and very well done too!). It was the perfect book to listen to while driving to and from work, lighthearted and fun, the narration bringing to life all of the personalities in this love story. Blake, Emma’s ex is rather full of himself. He’s from a wealthy family and doesn’t want to settle down long term. When they break up, he rallies trying to win Emma back, but she has a hard time re-falling in love with him, realizing that maybe they just didn’t suit. When Emma gets to know his brother Lucas, his complete opposite, she is amazed that they were raised by the same parents. When she finds out Lucas’s background she realizes how much they have in common and can’t stop thinking about him. Lucas, however, never stops trying to fix her back up with his brother. 100% loyal, which is nice and all, but kind of annoying when I really wanted him to take a chance a LOT sooner.

Like Mr. Darcy, Lucas seemed too good to be true. Except he wasn’t. He was the real thing. Emma had her work cut out in trying to make him see that they were the perfect fit, even though she started out with the wrong brother. There is a lot of silliness, some seriousness and a lot of heart in this sweet love story. My first by Julie Wright, but not my last.


Lies Jane Austen Told Me Click this link to purchase! Lies Jane Austen Told Me (Proper Romance Contemporary) Copyright 2018 Deborah Kehoe The Reading Chick All Rights Reserved.

This Chick Read: Burn Bright (Alpha and Omega) by Patricia Briggs

Burn Bright

Charles and Anna often investigate strange goings on in their pack, but also act as liaison’s to the federal government, traveling across the US to do so. Burn Bright stays very close to home. Bran, the Marrok, is off in Europe having helped Mercy when she was kidnapped in the novel Silence Fallen. Charles, acting Alpha until Bran’s return has to investigate a call he gets from one of his fathers wildlings. Wolves who live in the wild because they are kind of crazy and can’t live among the pack. He and Anna travel into the wilderness and find themselves in a magical fight for their lives and the lives of their pack.

I have been eagerly anticipating the release of Burn Bright because Anna and Charles are two of my favorite characters and one of my favorite couples. Since being introduced to them we have seen Charles Cornick, son to the Marrok and his enforcer, take on some really tough enemies. To the werewolves of North America he is one truly scary guy, brought in when something needs to be cleaned up. When he meets Anna and realizes she is his mate you see a subtle shift in his intensity. To those who don’t know him, he’s still intimidating as hell, but to those who do know him there is a slight softening. Anna, an Omega wolf, has a calming effect that’s often called upon in difficult moments, but Charles’ need to protect his mate and soothe her in return makes a difference in how his family and close friends see him and you can see that difference evolve as each book progresses. I love this progression in not only their relationship but in them as a couple with each novel showing their growing love and closeness.

Each novel in the Alpha and Omega series can be read as a stand alone with the central story a mystery that has a beginning, middle, and conclusion in each novel. However, I do think you’ll miss the subtleties in these characters and that is a huge part of my enjoyment in reading them. This series is a spinoff of the Mercy Thompson series. The timelines in both series are connected and if you read both series I think you get a boost of enjoyment, but once again, if you haven’t read Mercy’s stories I don’t think it will take away from enjoying Charles and Anna’s and Burn Bright was a really engaging story on it’s own merit.


I received an ARC of this novel for my honest review and it was honest.

Burn Bright image

Click this link to purchase! Burn Bright (Alpha and Omega)

Copyright 2018 Deborah Kehoe The Reading Chick All Rights Reserved

This Chicks Sunday Commentary: Book Themed Gifts

Do you ever feel like books are taking over your life? I have been blogging about books for over two years and anyone who knows me well knows that I read a lot. I love books, I can’t help it! I do love them and I guess my friends and family all know that I love to read so it shouldn’t be that surprising that I get a lot of book related things as gifts. The obvious choice are physical books and I certainly get a ton of those at Christmas and my birthday. Did you know all of the different book items that are out there? Well, I didn’t. Just for curiosity’s sake, I thought I’d share some items I’ve found as well as some gifts I’ve received.

Wine: Looking for a good hostess gift or want to make a suggestion to someone on what to bring to your party? Some pretty great vineyards actually have wines labeled after famous quotes or books. This one I’ve found uses a quote from Moby Dick as it’s label. “Folly of the Beast” Pinot Noir. I’m going to have to look this one up as Pinot Noir is one of my favorites wines.


The Princess Bride was a great book and an even more amazing movie. My sister actually gave me this necklace for Christmas a couple of years ago. I’m sure you all recognize the quote that Wesley says to his Princess throughout the book. “As You Wish” I always have people comment about the quote and the book when I wear this necklace. It’s a conversation starter, that’s for sure! (side note- I’ve often wondered if my sister wasn’t making a statement to me by giving me this necklace. Hmmmm. LOL)


Favorite Flashback gift! Who doesn’t remember getting these Lifesavers Storybook with rolls of Lifesavers candy for Christmas when they were a kid. It sure brings back memories! Although, I’ll admit that I did hate a couple of those flavors. Lime, ewww!!


For my birthday my mom surprised me with this fun necklace. It says So Many Books, so Little Time. I know you’ll all agree with me that that is definitely a true statement!! I own and want to read more books than I can possible get to in three lifetimes!


There are a ton of clothing items out there with statements about books. Too many to print here and too many to talk about. I bought this t-shirt at a book convention because reading has impacted my life. I laid it on my poor dog, Nash because, well, he’s cute too and deserves to be in my blog today! LOL. Is Reading your Superpower? I think it should be everyone’s!

I’ll just end this kind of silly post by saying that it’s nice to be known for loving something like books. First of all, it’s not an embarassing hobby. I can think of worse things! Second, apparently there are soooo many book themed items out there it makes it easy for people to buy things for you. I googled book themed items and there are so many more from dresses made out of books to clothes with books on them. Socks with pithy book quotes to food items with book quotes. The choices are endless! LOL.

Have you ever received any book themed gifts? Purchased some book themed items yourself? What’s your favorite?

Join this silly Sunday discussion. I’d love to hear!

Until next Sunday,


The Chick Read: Lake Silence (The Others) by Anne Bishop

Lake Silence is the first book in a new series set in the same world as The Others. Taking place after the terre indigene decimated the Humans First and Last movement (HFL) reminding humans that they are not the dominant species on Namid. Vicki DeVine, our main protagonist, has received The Jumble, a rustic lake resort, in her divorce settlement. After spending a lot of money making it habitable she’s finally rented out one of the cabins. When she finds her renter, Aggie Crowgard, cooking up a human eyeball in the microwave she realizes there is a dead body on her property. Vicki calls it in and gets more trouble than help. That rather gruesome yet quick start sets the tone for the remainder of the story and I quickly ate it up (sans eyeball, thanks very much!)

Lake Silence is filled with a fantastic group of quirky characters. Vicki has self confidence issues stemming from the abused relationship she had with her ex. Seeing Lake Silence and the inhabitants through her eyes, you are given a very clear view of who are the good guys and who are the bad. When the police show up to investigate, Highway Patrol officer Grimshaw, reminiscent of Lt. Montgomery from the previous Others books, is completely honorable. Even in the face of the terrifying terre indigene, he looks past their scary faces and see’s the dangerous humans as more terrible. Ex-cop Julian, who previously worked with Grimshaw, is now a bookstore owner in the town of Sproinger. Friendly with Vicki, he becomes an integral part of the investigation and ultimately the conclusion. There is also a hint of a future romance between he and Vicki if he can get past her reticence to have any kind of relationship with a man. There are a couple of familiar characters, but other than a hint or suggestion of characters in previous novels, this is a whole new cast.  I was disappointed at first but quickly became enraptured with being back in this fascinating world and meeting a new group of terre indigene and humans I could come to like just as well as Meg, Simon and the other inhabitants of the Lakeside Courtyard. Lake Silence is not just a quick fix but I can easily see it becoming another addiction.

I really don’t want to get into the plot of the story anymore than I already have since each element builds up to a great climax. I will say that at one point our characters play a game called Murder, which is similar to the game Clue that we all played as kids.  When the terre indigene offer up their own version of the game you really see the contrast between being terre indigene and being human. I loved the dark humor that Anne Bishop added to that scene and Vicki’s internal dialog was pretty funny throughout the book. ❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️

I received a copy of this book through NetGalley for my honest review and it was honest.

Lake Silence

Click this link to purchase! Lake Silence (World of the Others, The)

Copyright 2018 Deborah Kehoe The Reading Chick All Rights Reserved.

Joint Review: Sweep in Peace by Ilona Andrews

Joint Review: Sweep in Peace by Ilona Andrews
— Read on

You all know How much I love Ilona Andrews books. I found this really fun review of Sweep In Peace on Book Binge and wanted to share it with you. I can tell when bloggers are having fun and not only did these ladies love the book but they had a great time sharing their opinions.

If you haven’t read Sweep in Peace it is the second novel in the Innkeeper Chronicles. A wonderful fantasy series by Ilona Andrews!