Friday YA: The Devil You Know by Trish Doller

The Devil You Know is a three year old novel that I’d never heard of before, but when I read the synopsis I was intrigued. Small town girl Arcadia has had to grow up fast when her mom dies and she ends up taking care of her father and little brother. She meets two cousins at a campfire party and she and a friend decide to take off with them on a camping trip into southern Florida. Of course, things start to go wrong and Cadie ends up fighting for her life.

This one was a thrill ride! At 257 pages it definitely wasn’t a long book, but I think I read it in two or three hours? I sat down to start it and didn’t get up until I finished. I liked Cadie, even though I couldn’t identify with her at all. Yes, she was a burned out 16 year old having to take care of her family at a young age. Yes, she just wanted to have fun for once. But, who leaves for a camping trip with a couple of strangers? When her friend doesn’t end up going, she still goes! Not something I would’ve done at that age, so I kept reading. LOL.

This is a thriller and it was definitely creepy, which makes this review a little hard to write. I don’t want to give away anything. I will say that there were a few surprises, and I liked how Cadie got herself out of this mess. Other than that, I’m just going to say that if you are looking for a quick read that may be a few years old, I think this one was fun! It’s not Pride and Prejudice or anything, but it was an escape from reality and I enjoyed it! ❤️❤️❤️❤️

Opinions from around the Blogosphere

“I had this on my shelf for ages & I regret not picking it up sooner! I liked this book a lot. It was definitely one of my favorite types of books, which is why I bought it in the first place, but I didn’t expect that much from it. Instead, it blew me away with how suspenseful and creepy it was. Even though I had already guessed the ending, I still loved it. I loved every second of this book & will pick up anything else this author writes, without hesitation.” Book Addicts Ahoy

YA Thriller

Click this link to purchase!*The Devil You Know

Copyright 2019 Deborah Kehoe The Reading Chick All Rights Reserved

*Amazon Associate

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This Chick Read: Ache for You (Slow Burn #3) by J.T. Geissinger

Kimber DiSanto is having a really rough week. She is publicly humiliated when her fiancee dumps her at the alter and then she finds out her father is in the hospital in Italy and doesn’t have a lot of time left to live. Waiting in an airline lounge she spots a man who is superhumanly beautiful and she hates him on sight. She doesn’t particularly like men right now and it appears this one thinks he’s god’s gift. A feeling that’s confirmed when he hits on her very blatantly. When she arrives at her gate to find that her flight is oversold and she’s been bumped, that same man gives her his first class seat in exchange for a sketch pad he saw her drawing in while she was sitting in the lounge. Desperate, she gives it to him. Little does she know that he is Matteo Moretti a famous fashion designer, her step brother, and soon to be the bane of her existence. For a little while anyway….

This is a very sexy slow burn novel. Kimber and Matteo’s chemistry is off the charts but because they are adversaries it’s set on a slow simmer through most of the book. I’ll admit that I love slow burn stories and love the engagement of the characters leading up to the big moment usually more than that big sex scene. Although in this book, that also was pretty great. Ache For You uses the enemies to lovers trope to tease the readers into submission. Kimber needs to work out her hatred for her ex and men in general before she’ll give Matteo a chance and their shenanigans are delicious.

The reader is given a chance to view things through Matteo’s eyes as the POV shifts back and forth, which works for this story. We know that he actually is trying to win her love having immediately fallen for her in that airport lounge, so it’s really easy to route for him. Plus he is so sexy we are eager to finally see the two of them resolve their issues and be in love.

I have enjoyed J. T. Geissinger’s novels but I think this Slow Burn series is my favorite so far. If you haven’t had a chance to read them they are loosely based on fairy tales. In this case so loosely I had to have a friend remind me which one it was based on. Cinderella in this case, her ugly stepsisters are actually dogs so yes, it’s a very loose translation. LOL. ❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️

Opinions from around the Blogosphere

” I love this series of books loosely based on fairy tales. Each book is a well-written stand-alone. I enjoyed this one a lot and stayed up late on a week night to finish it. It was well worth it. ” Heron There and Everywhere

” I really enjoyed this book, it had everything you could want, an infuriating H, a difficult h, lots of witty banter, laugh out loud moments, romance with scenes that melt your kindle and twists and turns that you don’t see coming. I enjoyed the light Cinderella reference, another fabulous read from this author.  4.5 Stars! ” Sweet and Spicy Reads

Click this link to purchase!* Ache for You (Slow Burn Book 3)

Copyright 2019 Deborah Kehoe The Reading Chick All Rights Reserved

*Amazon Associate

This Chick Read: The Similars by Rebecca Hanover

Emma is going back to Darkwood Academy for her junior year without her best friend Oliver who committed suicide over the summer. It’s hard to get excited about the current gossip about six clones or “Similars” being enrolled at Darkwood, but when one of them is the clone of Oliver it’s hard to ignore. As she gets to know Levi and the other Similars she realizes that even though they have the same DNA they have individual personalities and aren’t exact copies of the original. As pro and con Cloning groups spring up on campus and around the nation Emma is enmeshed in an investigation into how her friend Oliver’s death was tied to the man who developed and raised the six Similars.

The Similars had such a great premise! Can you imagine showing up for school and finding your face on a cloned classmate? It’s not like high school isn’t difficult enough, right? Then there are the political and moral ambiguities of whether cloning should be accepted or not? These are all details that helped create this finely crafted novel that played out as more of a political intrigue then a YA fantasy novel. What struck me the most is that the hate and bigotry in this novel is not necessarily determined by color or societal hierarchy, in this case bigotry comes in the form of originals and copies. A subject that is topical in today’s world as much as in a fantasy novel. Although not quite yet to human copies. At least I don’t think so?

Emma was a wonderful heroine. She never sat back and just watched, she was always asking just one more question. That one last question always seemed to be slightly over the line but would give her the answers she’d need to make a decision to move forward in her thinking or to fall back on her upbringing. I really admired her fortitude. She never gave up on her friends, and never stopped looking into the Why’s and Who’s.

The Similars, even with all of their mysterious backgrounds and “special powers” seemed more real and fleshed out than their human counterparts. This definitely made it easier to like them but truly the humans were portrayed as pretty awful. You’d be inhuman to like the hateful attributes that were portrayed as “human”.

It took me a little while to warm up to Levi’s character. Emma was so distraught over Oliver’s death that you really felt her anguish over seeing his face on another guy. When she gets to know Levi and realizes they are really nothing alike he still keeps his distance until, well, he doesn’t. It’s really hard to talk about these characters without giving away a lot of the plot. I’ll just say that there is a reason that he keeps himself aloof, but Emma’s investigation makes him get involved and he goes all in emotionally at that point too.

The Similars was a very fast paced novel. Rebecca Hanover filled the story with enough moral, political, and personal subplots that my mind didn’t stop to chew before swallowing this novel whole. When you get ready to read it have your snacks and a coke at your side because you will NOT want to put it down! ❤️❤️❤️❤️❣️

I received an ARC of this book through NetGalley for my honest review and it was honest!

Opinions from around the Blogosphere

“I don’t know why it happens that I always end up reviewing books I don’t like. Maybe I need to read different books? Or not read books that I am not extremely excited about in the first place? I don’t know. But either way, this book was very disappointing, awkward, and did not live up to my hopes for it. Alas.” A Word and a Whisper

“Overall, this is an intriguing book that held my attention from the first page, and I fully intend on continuing with the series.  If you’re a fan of layers upon layers of secrets, sci-fi, thrillers, and mystery, add The Similars to your TBR.” Books and Such

Click this link to purchase!* The Similars

Copyright 2019 Deborah Kehoe The Reading Chick All Rights Reserved

*Amazon Associate

Friday YA: First & Then by Emma Mills

Only child Devon Tennyson has had her world changed. Her cousin Foster has come to live with she and her parents and now she has the little brother she never wanted. Her safe world has turned upside down and changes are on the horizon, her safe crush on her best friend Cas is pushed to the back burner by first, her cousin Foster, and second by all star quarterback Ezra. Being teamed with both of them in her P.E. class starts a chain of events that changes her world.

I have read one other Emma Mills story, Foolish Hearts. Whereas that novel was different than this one, there was one similarity that I enjoyed seeing adapted again. Both of the female main characters were plodding along and their young worlds got shook up. In First & Then the catalyst is her cousin Foster. His childhood circumstances were heartbreaking and whereas Devon was empathetic, it took Ezra befriending Foster for her to see the big picture and open her heart to enfold Foster into her life.

Devon’s love for Jane Austen is mentioned quite a few times in this novel and you can’t help but make Pride & Prejudice comparisons. Especially between Ezra and Darcy. Her view of Ezra as a snobby standoffish jock was similar to Elizabeth’s of Darcy. As with Pride and Prejudice, when Devon’s crush Cas is actually falling for another girl, it is Ezra who quietly steps in to make her feel good about herself. Albeit in a quiet, non communicative way. I really couldn’t wait until they got past all of the miscommunications and red herrings that were thrown into their path. A sign of a good story and the reader being invested in the relationships for sure!

If you enjoy YA contemporary’s with a hint of romance this novel is the perfect fit for you. Devon is a great leading heroine, but beware, Foster steals the show in this one. He is adorkably cute. ❤️❤️❤️❤️

Opinions From around the Blogosphere

This is a story of love and loss, friendship and family, the high school experience. It’s also about a town and it’s love for football and tradition. It’s about the effects of drunk driving and addiction on the lives of those left behind. It’s a beautiful story of a girl who becomes less judgemental, more assertive and finds love.” My World of Books

“First & Then is a very cute, lovely, heartwarming, funny story about friendship and family, and figuring out what you want in life, and I would recommend it to anyone who loves contemporary YA, especially if they’re a bit sick of the large doses of romance in that genre.” The Reading Hobbit

Click this link to purchase!* First & Then

Copyright 2018 Deborah Kehoe The Reading Chick All Rights Reserved

*Amazon Associate

This Chick Read: The Royal Runaway by Lindsay Emory

Being jilted at the altar would, well, suck. Being jilted at the altar when you are a princess and your wedding is going to be aired on live TV? I don’t think there’s a word that describes how Princess Theodora of Dreiden feels. After hiding away for a few months following the disappearance of her groom, she arrives back in Dreiden ready to put a good face on a bad situation. When she sneaks out one night to have a drink incognito at the local pub she meets dark and dangerous Scot, Nick who see’s right through her disguise and convinces her to look into why her fiance disappeared. As they investigate their attraction becomes a force that Thea can’t ignore. What she and Nick find out changes her future, but is that future with Nick? Or without him?

This novel wasn’t at all what I expected and I mean that in the best way possible! When you pick up a romance where princesses are involved, I don’t expect much more than a fun fantasy romance, but this story had a lot of meat and emotion! Thea was not your usual princess. Yes, she was dutiful, but she also rebelled against her princesshood by sneaking out and escaping the confines of her service. In this case she got more than she bargained for. She had thought she’d been jilted at the altar but as she and Nick start looking for her ex, the book adds in some intrigue, making this book a bit more romantic suspense than rom-com. I liked that twist!

Nick was ex military and very cryptic about who and why he was also hunting for her ex fiance. Surprisingly, Nick fought against his attraction to Thea. He was really focused, but she was nothing like he’d imagined she’d be. Nick, I found her surprising too! Those little surprise character traits were why I liked Thea so much and really rooted for her to find happiness. Even if it was with somewhat surly and slightly hesitant Nick. He was a man that didn’t like his agenda messed with, and Thea kind of rocked to the beat of her own drum.

If you’re looking for a romance with a little more depth, I think this one actually hits that nail on the head. I mean it’s no Jason Bourne meets Anne Hathaway from the Princess Diaries, but it does have a nice mix of action, emotion, and heat. Actually, I could see Matt Damon in the role of Nick, but I’m not sure he’s do a very good Scottish accent. Hmmm, maybe Gerard Butler? Anywho, pick this one up. I think you’ll be surprised and really like it too! ❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️

Opinions from around the Blogosphere

“I loved reading about an empowering female character; sure, she fell apart at first when she was left at the altar, but she picked herself right up and then did what it took to protect her country and her people and learns to walk a line between her royal duties and having freedom for herself. And this is a romance!!” Stephanie’s Novel Fiction

“I really enjoyed The Royal Runaway — it is the perfect escape for cold autumn nights! Whether you’re a longtime romance reader or looking for something new, I’d recommend picking this one up. This was my first book by Lindsay Emory and it certainly wont be the last.” I Should Read That

Royal

Click this link to purchase!* The Royal Runaway

Copyright 2018 Deborah Kehoe The Reading Chick All Rights Reserved

* Amazon Associate

This Chicks Sunday Commentary: Uppercase Box Dec’18 Reveal!

I have mixed feelings about my last Uppercase Box reveal for 2018. I will be taking a brief hiatus from this subscription and won’t be posting these reveals until my finances get back on track and I can re-subscribe. I’ve really enjoyed receiving this monthly package and unveiling the surprises within. I hope you have too!

December’s Uppercase Box had some of my favorite swag. Check it out in the pictures below!

I loved the Ladies of Lit 2019 calendar. Each month has a pretty graphic with a quote from an author. I will definitely be using this little calendar, it’s sweet!

Giving this month’s subscription a Christmas theme, Uppercase included a wood carved ornament from Juniper & Ivy Designs called The Chronicles of Narnia Tree Ornament. Definitely one of my favorite series from childhood and really cute too!

None of these has anything to do with the actually book of the month, so no secrets revealed in the first two. Although this month’s book is a fantasy novel so the genre is reflected in the ornament above.

The December ’18 book is Amber & Dusk by Lyra Selene!

Synopsis:

Sylvie has always known she deserves more. Out in the permanent twilight of the Dusklands, her guardians called her power to create illusions a curse. But Sylvie knows it gives her a place in Coeur d’Or, the palais of the Amber Empress and her highborn legacies. 

But her hope for a better life is quickly dimmed. The empress invites her in only as part of a wicked wager among her powerful courtiers. Sylvie must assume a new name, Mirage, and begin to navigate secretive social circles and deadly games of intrigue in order to claim her spot. Soon it becomes apparent that nothing is as it appears and no one, including her cruel yet captivating sponsor, Sunder, will answer her questions. As Mirage strives to seize what should be her rightful place, she’ll have to consider whether it is worth the price she must pay.

So Sylvie sets off toward the Amber City, a glittering jewel under a sun that never sets, to take what is hers.

An extraordinary, vividly rendered YA debut.

This novel came out on November 27th and I haven’t heard of it, but I love the fantasy genre.

Have you read this novel? What did you think?

Until next Sunday!

Deb

Blogger to Blogger Series: An Interview with Eva @NovelDeelights

When you read Eva’s bio you can tell that she’s a lover of books, mostly crime novels and mystery’s. What I like the best is that her voice is really clear and she’s full of sass! I like a woman who has a sense of humor, especially when it’s directed at herself. Eva’s posts are fun to read, so if you haven’t checked out her blog yet, please click the link below!

Eva @ Novel Deelights

Let’s see how Eva answered my 10 questions!

Blogging is universal and even though we inhabit the same community, we don’t always live in the same country. What country do you live in?

I live in the north of Belgium, quite close to the border with the Netherlands.

What is the view outside your front door? 

I’m already cheating here but I have a good reason for it. There’s a building site across the street from me and a bunch of trucks blocking my driveway on a daily basis and really, who wants to see that? So, instead, I’ve taken a picture of my garden which is the view I have when I’m working on my blog or replying to emails.


Most blogs have a fun story of origin. Please share the story behind your blogs name and/or why you started blogging.

I’d been using my nickname “Dee” on the internet for years so I thought Novel Deelights was actually really clever. I didn’t realise until months later there’s another blog with a similar name. If I had, I would have tried to come up with something else.

As to why I started blogging, I didn’t really know it was a thing until some time in 2016 when I friended someone on Goodreads. I was in awe of her blog and we had so many books in common. She’s one of my dearest friends now as well. That’s when my itch sort of started. But it wasn’t until December of that year when I desperately tried to share my favourite ten books of the year via twitter that I thought there must be a better way of doing things and a few months later, my blog was born.

Describe where you write your blog. Include a picture if you’d like!

At the weekend, when my other half is at home, I’ll be at my dining room table with the view of the picture I shared for question 2. During weekdays, I’m sat very uncomfortably on my sofa with the laptop on the coffee table. This is because I have an incredibly needy dog who doesn’t like it when she can’t be right next to me.

Most of us have a stack of books sitting next to our couch or bed waiting to be read. What books are in your stack? 

I’m one of those who doesn’t have a stack persé. I do have a bookshelf where I put the books I’d like to read in the near future. It’s a bit of a mess. I also have a few more piles tucked away in a cabinet but I’m not showing that one. I may just die of embarrassment 😉

If you have had a bad day and want to spend an hour reading a book, what is your go to genre or favorite book that will lift your mood?

I’m all about crime fiction, whether I’m having a bad day or a good one, all year long. Although to be fair, if I was having a truly bad day, I’d probably end up binge-watching something on Netflix instead of picking up a book.

When you aren’t blogging, how do you spend your time? Work, Play, School?

Reading, mostly. Or buying books. That counts, right? Catch up on some tv shows or watch a movie. I’m also known to take out a few weeks to build some ridiculous big Lego thing. My husband bought the Star Wars Millennium Falcon a few months ago and that took me two weeks to do. Fun! And in between, household chores because the fairies are useless 😉

What is your favorite blog post you’ve ever written? 

Since I tend to only write reviews and I’m never happy with them once they’re published, that’s an impossible question to answer for me. So I’m going for my weekly wrap-up feature, which I post every Sunday. They’re a lot of fun to put together and also there ones where I seem to get the most interaction. This is the latest one : https://noveldeelights.com/2018/12/02/weekly-wrap-up-december-2/

Have you ever met one of your favorite authors? If so, what did you say to them? Looking back, what do you wish you had said instead?

I haven’t met any authors, no. That’s probably a good thing. I have no doubt I’d make a complete fool of myself. 😄

If you could sit down with an author for a slice of cake and a question,  who is the author, what kind of cake would you serve, and what is the first question you’d ask?

Wow. For the easy question, it has to be chocolate cake. Or cheesecake. Or maybe both. It’s good to have options. My favourite author is Karin Slaughter so I can’t not choose her but as to what to ask her, I have no idea. I’m so bad at these things. I’d be perfectly okay with her just telling me her life’s story so I can just sit and listen and not need to say a word.

Thanks so much Eva for sharing your story! The view you shared is so gorgeous that I don’t think I could get anything done besides sit and stare at it. I love seeing all of the bloggers different landscapes.

If you know of a blogger, or would like to answer these 10 questions and be featured on my blog, please reach out! 

Thanks for reading Blogger to Blogger!

Deb

A Court of Frost and Starlight (A Court of Thorns and Roses #3.1) by Sarah J Maas

A Court of Frost and Starlight is a novella where we get to catch up on all of our favorite characters setting the stage for the next novel.

Feyre and Rhysand continue their love story, but Feyre also learns how to deal with her grief from the last war in the balance in her new role as High Lady but also as one of the people who lost friends and loved ones. I liked seeing her personal growth. She and Rhys’ love story has stayed true but not evolved and I think she personally needed to grow for that to happen.

Nesta, who is becoming one of the more interesting characters shows a little bit more of her drama, not really advancing her character anymore but we are allowed to see a little interaction between she and Cassian which is interestingly dramatic. I can’t wait for more of their story!

We do catch up with most of our favorite characters as Feyre and Rhys host their first Winter Solstice party together. Think Christmas with the family but this family all like each other. All in all this was a solid set up to the next novel and I enjoyed look through the window into these lives, if only for the moment. ❤️❤️❤️❤️

Opinions from around the Blogosphere

“I relished this book, because I absolutely adore the world Maas made, and she made sure to show it off with this book. I felt like she took the time to really show us how Velaris looked to her, and I loved that. The winter scenes felt truly magical and so vibrant, I couldn’t stop reading about the beautiful swirling snowstorms.” The Books Are Everywhere

“Overall, the novella was a cute fluffy piece, but by no means a proper instalment in the series in my eyes. Most of the time it felt like something you’d read in a fanfiction, but yeah. I would say to read it if you’re a fan of the ACOTAR world and love seeing the characters interact, but I wouldn’t say it’s a necessary piece in the series and you can also skip it if fillers aren’t really your thing.” The Scarlet Bookkeeper 

YA Fantasy

Click this link to purchase!*A Court of Frost and Starlight (A Court of Thorns and Roses)

Copyright 2018 Deborah Kehoe The Reading Chick All Rights Reserved

*Amazon Associates

This Chick Read: Luna and the Lie by Mariana Zapata

At seventeen Luna left her old life behind and disappeared to a new town. She meets Mr. Cooper the owner of an auto body shop and is mentored in everything automobile. The people in that shop become her family and Mr Cooper a father figure. When Mr. Cooper takes on a partner, Luna puts a smile on her face determined to be happy in the face of Ripley’s grumpiness. One day, Luna tells a lie for Ripley and he is determined to return the favor, to even the score. When Luna finally asks him for help it’s the start of a friendship and then so much more.

Mariana Zapata is the queen of slow burn romance novels where the build up of the relationship is 90% of the novel. Luna and the Lie didn’t detour from Zapata’s norm however it is a little bit of a darker novel than she usually writes. I wasn’t surprised by Ripley’s character. He is gruff, grumpy, and talks by grunting a lot. Pretty typical of her alpha male hero’s. What was surprising was how he had to overcome Luna’s, dare I say damaged (?), persona. Luna is determined to be happy and live the life she has always dreamed about. When I say determined, I mean she hangs onto that emotion with a fierceness I am just not used to seeing in a romance heroine. Ms. Zapata writes sassy, independent women, which I love! Luna is sassy and independent, but she also lives in her head a lot. Reminding herself of how she is loved, has a good job, and is happy. Repeatedly. Like she is talking herself into those things. When the relationship between Ripley and Luna finally happens, I am so happy that she is finally getting that dream that she’s been pursuing, and with a man that will love and protect her at the risk of his own life. 

This novel was one of my most anticipated releases in the latter half of this year and it did not disappoint. It did make me think. Ripley was an interesting character and although Luna’s thoughts and dreams revolved around him, he wasn’t the heart of this novel. Luna was. Ms. Zapata did such a great job of portraying Luna’s despair and hope that it was those emotions that I felt when the novel concluded. Yes, despair that the book was over and hope that she’ll write one quicker than the last, but also that hope that those who need love and security from others will find what their heart needs. Not all do in life, but in fiction we can write our own happy endings. The despair part is still sitting in my gut. This is a novel that will stick with you for a little while. It was wonderful, but it was also hard to read and yet I want to pick it up again immediatley because I believe that’s what I need to exorcise these feelings.

❤️❤️❤️❤️❣️

If you’ve read this novel I’d love to hear if you had the same visceral reaction I did. Let me know!

Click this link to purchase!* Luna and the Lie

Copyright 2018 Deborah Kehoe The Reading Chick All Rights Reserved

*Amazon Associate