Review: Zenith by Sasha Alsberg and Lindsay Cummings

Zenith (The Androma Saga #1) byReview: Zenith by Sasha Alsberg and Lindsay CummingsZenith (The Androma Saga #1) by Sasha Alsberg, Lindsay Cummings
Published by Mirabel Inc. on June 21st 2016
Genres: Fantasy, Young Adult
Format: eBook
Source: Purchased
Buy on AmazonBarnes & NobleThe Book Depository
Goodreads
four-stars

Most know her as the Bloody Baroness, the captain of a fearsome glass starship called The Marauder. Androma and her crew strike terror in the hearts of those who cross them amongst the many corners of the Mirabel Galaxy.
When a routine mission goes rogue, the all-female crew is captured by a bounty hunter from Andi’s past and forced into a job that could, quite literally, start a war that will devour worlds.
Meanwhile, on the far side of the galaxy, the ruthless ruler Nor waits in the shadows of the planet Xen Ptera, biding her time. The final pieces are about to fall into place, liberating a plan that will tear Mirabel in two.
As the Marauder hurtles toward the unknown, there is one lesson that proves to be true: No one can be trusted in a galaxy that runs on lies and illusion.
From internet sensation Sasha Alsberg and multi-genre author Lindsay Cummings comes a new serialized space opera, full of action, intrigue, and steamy star-crossed romance.
ZENITH: THE ANDROMA SAGA will be released in small sections at a time.The adventure begins June 21st, 2016, wherever ebooks are sold.

Hello, Darlings!

So this was quite the interesting read, one that I stumbled upon because I enjoy watching co-author Sasha Alsberg YouTube channel. I was quite skeptical at first, because this is a self published serialized YA series – but I must say that I was pleasantly surprised. For a self published and edited work, it was definitely captivating. I have a few small problems with it, but those are easy to ignore if you focus on the big picture.

The story line is certainly a new one to the majority of YA’s that I’ve ever read. The characters are fresh and it is action packed from the first page. The dialogue was okay sometimes and fantastic others (here lies my main problem: I felt like I could tell what chunks were written by each person. I couldn’t tell you which author, but areas seemed to have their own feel. Like I was aware of the fact that it was written by two authors the entire time. And one author was clearly more skilled than the other in certain areas) Since this is a serialized novel, the first chunk took me about an hour to read in total – maybe a bit less than that. I was immediately hooked and the pages flew by. I don’t normally enjoy reading ebooks, I find them hard to get into with the digital format, but this took no effort at all.

Overall, I was quite impressed with the uniqueness of the story and the unending action that didn’t feel too heavy. This story could take so many directions, I’m quite excited to see where it goes! From my knowledge, the authors have just sent their manuscript out for submission and hope to have it published in hard copy. I do think this work could really benefit from having a few more editorial eyes looking at it, there is so much room for growth. But, as is: I loved it. Easy, quick read. And most of all, incredibly proud of the authors. I’ve been watching Sasha’s video updates about writing and I feel like one of my friends has just written a book. Congratulations girl!

If you’re looking for a very quick read with a twist, I highly suggest you check it out!

four-stars

Lizzie

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Make Me Read It Readathon!

make me read it readathon

Val at The Innocent Smiley and Ely at Tea & Titles are hosting the Make Me Read It Readathon from July 9th-16th

What is this Readathon about?

Look at the books you own, either physical, e-book or ones you’ve borrowed from the library and pick out a few you really want to read, or feel like you should read. It’s up to you how many you pick, personally I’d pick a few more than you expect to be able to read in a week. Example: if you think you’ll only read two, pick out five books or if you think you can read seven, pick out ten.

Make a list of these books on your blog, or make a video, or a Goodreads shelf or post a picture on Instagram—whatever is easiest for you. Then get friends, other bloggers/booktubers etc. to vote on which books you HAVE to read.

When the readathon comes along, you read the books in the order of most votes. For example, if one book gets 10 votes—you read that first, then the one that got 7 and so on. If there’s a tie, then it’s your preference. The goal is to read as many as possible.

What books are on my list?

(All covers lead to their Goodreads page)

you before anyone elsethe assassin gamebeen here all alongthe thousandth floor
labryinth lostTheGraces(Revised)our chemical heartsgirl in pieces
the forgettingvassa in the nightstealing snowthree dark crowns
stalking jack the ripperthe female of the speciesa shadow bright and burning

VOTE!!!

Here is where you come in! You can vote for up to FIVE books for me to read during this readathon!

Which Books Should I Read (MakeMeReadItReadathon)

View Results

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Stephanie

Review: Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo

Review: Six of Crows by Leigh BardugoSix of Crows by Leigh Bardugo
on September 29, 2015
Genres: Fantasy, Young Adult
Pages: 465
Format: Hardcover
Source: Purchased
Buy on AmazonBarnes & NobleThe Book Depository
Goodreads
five-stars

Ketterdam: a bustling hub of international trade where anything can be had for the right price—and no one knows that better than criminal prodigy Kaz Brekker. Kaz is offered a chance at a deadly heist that could make him rich beyond his wildest dreams. But he can't pull it off alone...

A convict with a thirst for revenge.

A sharpshooter who can't walk away from a wager.

A runaway with a privileged past.

A spy known as the Wraith.

A Heartrender using her magic to survive the slums.

A thief with a gift for unlikely escapes.

Kaz's crew are the only ones who might stand between the world and destruction—if they don't kill each other first.

Hello, Darlings!

If you’re a regular of the bookish online community I doubt you haven’t NOT heard something about Six of Crows – and rightly so! I read this book when it initially came out last year, and loved it. With the sequel being published soon I just felt like it deserved  a reread. As usual, because I loved it, my thoughts will be brief and spoiler free 🙂

The basic concept of this book is the cataloging of events that a group of teen misfits get up to in the slums of Ketterdam. This story is full of every thing you love and want from a page turner: love, suspense, comedy, adventure – basically a little bit of everything. The cast of characters are bountiful in variety, and I was SO happy to see that not a single character was predictable or easily categorized into any kind of trope. There is no classic funny man or dizty pretty girl with a big heart, each member of the crew has a purpose and will surprise you at every corner. The overall plot was amazing. Even during my reread I sat and read this in only two sittings – it’s that intriguing. The politics of their world and learning the back stories to each character from varying perspectives makes it so you are always learning something new. There wasn’t any point in this novel where I felt like clear world building or plot expansion was happening, I simply just wanted more.

More of their lives, more conversations, more sexual tension, and more of Dirtyhands devilish smooth talk. This is one of those stories that leaves you sad when it’s over, like you’ve said goodbye to your best friends and have to go back to reality. I could not, and most likely will not ever, get enough of this story. The setting is immediately crystal clear and the tone of the novel is so new to normal YA fantasies that you find yourself just a little disappointed in every thing else you’ve ever read before it.

If this is a book you’ve has been sitting on your TBR list for a while or just haven’t picked it up because you weren’t a fan of Bardugo’s Shadow and Bone series, seriously give it a try. I’ve heard (pun intended) that the audiobook is amazing as well. Each character really has their own voice and unique perspective that will inspire you to write or draw or create something in their honor to commemorate the time you graciously spent in their world

five-stars

Lizzie

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Sing Along Saturday [8]

Sing Along Saturday is a new meme hosted by my good friend Katrina @ Bookish Things and More! Every Saturday there will be a different theme and you have to share a song that goes along with that theme! I think it’s a great idea and I am going to start participating in it and I’d love to see all of your Sing Along Saturdays!

Songs About Dads or Songs You Jam Out With Your Dad

Let’s Talk About It

My dad has been dead for 8 years this coming August. Not a day goes by where I don’t think about him or miss him. This song really hits it on the nail for me. <3

Stephanie

Nefertiti’s Heart [Review]

Nefertiti’s Heart [Review]Nefertiti's Heart by A.W. Exley
Series: Artifact Hunters #1
Published by Curiosity Quills Press on February 14th 2013
Genres: Adult, Steampunk, Historical, Mystery, Romance
Pages: 286
Format: eBook, Audiobook
Source: Purchased
Buy on AmazonBarnes & NobleThe Book Depository
Goodreads
four-stars

This is an alternate cover edition for ASIN: B00BFTMRBA
Cara Devon has always suffered curiosity and impetuousness, but tangling with a serial killer might cure that. Permanently.
1861. Cara has a simple mission in London – finalise her father’s estate and sell off his damned collection of priceless artifacts. Her plan goes awry when a killer stalks the nobility, searching for an ancient Egyptian relic rumoured to hold the key to immortality.
Nathaniel Trent, known as the villainous viscount, is relentless in his desire to lay his hands on both Cara and the priceless artifacts. His icy exterior and fiery touch stirs Cara’s demons, or could he lay them to rest?
Self-preservation fuels Cara’s search for the gem known as Nefertiti’s Heart. In a society where everyone wears a mask to hide their true intent, she needs to figure out who to trust, before she sacrifices her own heart and life.

My Thoughts

I really enjoyed this book! I was a little hesitant to pick it up for reasons I will never understand but I am so glad I did because I thoroughly enjoyed this and am really itching to get to the rest of this series!

Things that I really enjoyed:

  1. All of the Egyptian-ness within it! It was great to hear about some of these artifacts and the Egyptian elements were wonderful!
  2. I really loved the mystery that went with this. It wasn’t just a steampunk book. But it was a steampunk book that had murders in it and it was really fun to read about the mystery behind the murders.
  3. I really loved Cara as a character. She was independent. Though, the reason why she was so independent is sad and at times hard to read, but it was written well.
  4. I loved the romance between Cara and Nate. I really liked them as a duo!

If you’re in the mood for a great steampunk with murders, romance, and Egyptian elements, then pick this one up! I really enjoyed it! 🙂

four-stars

Stephanie

Reading this book contributed to these challenges:

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A Court of Mist and Fury [Review]

A Court of Mist and Fury [Review]A Court of Mist and Fury by Sarah J. Maas
Series: A Court of Thorns and Roses #2
on May 3rd 2016
Genres: New Adult, Fantasy, Romance, Retelling
Pages: 624
Format: Hardcover, Audiobook
Source: Purchased
Buy on AmazonBarnes & NobleThe Book Depository
Goodreads
five-stars

“Tell me what you see.”“A world divided in two.”
Feyre survived Amarantha’s clutches to return to the Spring Court—but at a steep cost. Though she now has the powers of the High Fae, her heart remains human, and it can’t forget the terrible deeds she performed to save Tamlin’s people.
Nor has Feyre forgotten her bargain with Rhysand, High Lord of the feared Night Court. As Feyre navigates its dark web of politics, passion, and dazzling power, a greater evil looms—and she might be key to stopping it. But only if she can harness her harrowing gifts, heal her fractured soul, and decide how she wishes to shape her future—and the future of a world cleaved in two.

My Thoughts

**Note: Most of this will probably be spoilerific, so if you have not read this series yet, I suggest read it and then read my thoughts! You have been warned!**

Okay, so if I could give this a million stars, I would. I absolutely freaking LOVED this book. This is hands down my favorite book to date. I definitely think that the ACOTAR series is better than the ToG series. Don’t get me wrong, I love ToG; but I love ACOTAR more. And even though I give this a million stars, there are some things that I just have to get off my chest…

Now, in the first book I was totally Team Tamlin for Feyre and Team Rhysand for ME. In the second book, I am Team Rhysand for EVERYONE. Now, I will admit that at first I was pissed that Sarah J. Maas decided to do another huge love interest shift like she did in the ToG series. In fact, I’m still a little peeved that she vilifies the first love interest to make her fans love the new ship. But I feel it is more justified in ACOMAF than it was in ToG (even though I am a Rowan fan, I still feel like Chaol got the complete shit end of the stick). I just don’t want Sarah J. Maas to do this in every series she writes. And this is not saying that I don’t love the new ships, because believe me I do. It’s just a little irksome on how the new ships happen or take place.

But other than that, ACOMAF, in my eyes, is the best book Sarah J. Maas has written so far! Feyre learns and trains with her new powers in this book and for the third and final book, I am expecting her to kick some awesome ass and be the badass that she is meant to be. I honestly cannot wait until ACOTAR #3 is here!!!

I’m still trying to get all my thoughts together on this, but I seriously loved this book so much that it’s hard to reel them all in. If you haven’t read this series yet, please do so. The first book pales in comparison to this sequel, but I promise you, it is well worth it!!!

five-stars

Stephanie

Reading this book contributed to these challenges:

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Top Ten Tuesday [87]

Top Ten Tuesday is a meme created by The Broke and the Bookish. Every Tuesday there is a different bookish top ten list. Join in on the fun!
[Note: I totally forgot to do this one yesterday… so enjoy this Top Ten Tuesday on Wednesday! :)] 

Top Ten Most Anticipated Releases for the Second Half of the Year!

empire of stormsof fire and starsheartless
1. Empire of Storms by Sarah J. Maas [releasing: September 6th 2016]
Honestly, I was more excited for the release of ACOMAF only because I prefer that series over ToG. However, I’m still looking forward to this one and getting more of Rowan and seeing where SJM takes this series!
2. Of Fire and Stars by Audrey Coulthurst [releasing: November 22nd 2016]
I wasn’t able to get this one at BEA, the line for it was so long that they were out by the time it got to me. But this sounds amazing and f/f relationship in a fantasy? YES PLEASE!
3. Heartless by Marissa Meyer [releasing: November 8th 2016]
I was unable to obtain this one at BEA, but it’s still one of my most anticipated releases this year!!
the midnight stargemina
4. The Midnight Star by Marie Lu [releasing: October 11th 2016]
I read the first book in this series last year and am waiting to read the second one until this third and final book in the series comes out! I am super stoked to see where Marie takes this story!
5. Gemina by Amie Kaufman & Jay Kristoff [releasing: October 18th 2016]
This is another highly anticipated release and I waited in a line for 2.5 hours to get a copy of this ARC at BEA! I’m currently listening to Illuminae on audiobook and plan on getting to this one soon after!!!
bright smoke cold firea shadow bright and burningstrange the dreamer
6. Bright Smoke, Cold Fire by Rosamund Hodge [releasing: September 27th 2016]
This just sounds AMAZING!
7. A Shadow Bright and Burning by Jessica Cluess [releasing: September 20th 2016]
Because who doesn’t need another YA Fantasy series to read?!
8. Strange the Dreamer by Laini Taylor [releasing: September 27th 2016]
I love Laini’s writing and am hoping this is just as beautiful as Daughter of Smoke and Bone!
three dark crownsstalking jack the ripper
9. Three Dark Crowns by Kendare Blake [releasing: September 20th 2016]
Sounds amazing!
10. Stalking Jack the Ripper by Kerri Maniscalco [releasing: September 20th 2016]
Such a cool concept and really looking forward to it!

What’s on your top ten this week? And have you read any of these? What books should I put at the TOP of my list? Clearly, my September is going to be PACKED!

Stephanie

Sing Along Saturday [7]

sing along saturday

Sing Along Saturday is a new meme hosted by my good friend Katrina @ Bookish Things and More! Every Saturday there will be a different theme and you have to share a song that goes along with that theme! I think it’s a great idea and I am going to start participating in it and I’d love to see all of your Sing Along Saturdays!

Beach Music?

Let’s Talk About It

For some reason when I think of beach music… I think of the Beach Boys? I have no clue! haha! 🙂

Stephanie

Blog Tour: Break Me Like A Promise [Review & Giveaway]

Blog Tour: Break Me Like A Promise [Review & Giveaway]Break Me Like a Promise by Tiffany Schmidt
Series: Once Upon A Crime Family #2
on June 7th 2016
Genres: Young Adult, Contemporary, Retelling, Romance
Pages: 416
Format: ARC
Source: Publisher
Buy on AmazonBarnes & NobleThe Book Depository
Goodreads
four-half-stars

No one is unbreakable.
All Magnolia Vickers has ever wanted was to follow father’s path as head of the Family Business. But new legislation is poised to destroy the Family’s operations in the black-market organ trade and Maggie’s recent behavior has wrecked the business-savvy reputation she’s worked her whole life to build.
She’s given an ultimatum: shape up or step aside.
Then Maggie messes up: she downloads a virus onto her father’s computer, and must sneak it off-estate for repair. When Alex, a tech whiz, uncovers the type of information on the machine, he offers Maggie a choice: her Family can give him a kidney, or he’ll irreparably scramble the data. Maggie agrees, but has no intention of keeping her promise or ever seeing him again. That night Alex shows up at her Family estate with copies of confidential Family files and a shocking revelation—the kidney is for him.
The Vickers aren’t willing to let Alex out of their sight, so he moves onto their estate and Maggie is assigned to be his keeper. A task she resents and he enjoys making as challenging as possible. But procuring black market organs is becoming increasingly difficult, and as Alex’s health declines, she’s surprised to find herself falling for him.
Like it or not, Maggie must accept that if she wants to save Alex’s life and carve out a place in the new legalized organ business, she’s going to have to fight for both.

My Thoughts

Number 1. I have not read the first book in this series. Thankfully, that’s not a big deal. Because each book deals with different characters. I’ve been told the characters in BREAK ME LIKE A PROMISE were in HOLD ME LIKE A BREATH but they played very, very small parts. So, if you haven’t read the first book, you can easily read and figure things out with the second book. Normally, I don’t like to read a book without reading the first book (even in companion series) however, I didn’t mind it with this one.

Number 2. This book has a lot more higher reviews than the first book. I can’t compare the two, but I did really like this book. I loved how it dealt a lot with the criminal activities. I liked the politics. And I really liked the characters within this book.

Number 3. Speaking of characters. I loved Maggie! She was such a strong character! She was super focused. I can see people not liking her because she mainly cares about profits and numbers rather than patients and people. But, what do you expect from an heiress to an organ harvesting business? I would imagine anyone in her position, and who wanted the business, would care about the numbers. I really loved seeing her growth throughout the book.

Number 4. Alex. I loved the chemistry between Alex and Maggie. It was great. I loved how he’s the reason for a lot of Maggie’s growth throughout the book. Because if it weren’t for him, Maggie would still be all about the numbers.

Number 5. I loved it! I will definitely be going back to read the first book in this series and I cannot wait to read the rest of this series! At least I hope there are still more books after this one!

About the Author

Tiffany Schmidt is the author of Send Me a Sign, Bright Before Sunrise, and Hold Me Like a Breath (Once Upon a Crime Family book 1).

She’s found her happily ever after in Pennsylvania with her saintly husband, impish twin boys, and a pair of mischievous puggles.

You can find out more about her and her books at: TiffanySchmidt.com, TiffanySchmidtWrites.Tumblr.com or by following her on Twitter @TiffanySchmidt.

LINKS: Website | Twitter | Facebook | Tumblr | Instagram

Giveaway

1 set of the BOLDLY BOOKISH 2 Tour books (US Only)
Books include: Hold Me Like A Breath & Break Me Like A Promise by Tiffany Schmidt, The Fixer & The Long Game by Jennifer Lynn Barnes, & The Leaving by Tara Altebrando
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Tour Schedule

Week 1 ~ BREAK ME LIKE A PROMISE by Tiffany Schmidt
 
Week 2 ~ THE LONG GAME by Jennifer Lynn Barnes
 
Week 3 ~ THE LEAVING by Tara Altebrando
four-half-stars

Stephanie

Reading this book contributed to these challenges:

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