Jaime Reviews ~ Of Fire and Stars by Audrey Coulthurst

By Audrey Coulthurst
Published on November 22, 2016
Published by: Balzer + Bray
Source: Around the World ARC Tours
Betrothed since childhood to the prince of Mynaria, Princess Dennaleia has always known what her future holds. Her marriage will seal the alliance between Mynaria and her homeland, protecting her people from other hostile lands. But Denna has a secret. She possesses an Affinity for fire—a dangerous gift for the future queen of a kingdom where magic is forbidden.

Now, Denna must learn the ways of her new home while trying to hide her growing magic. To make matters worse, she must learn to ride Mynaria’s formidable warhorses before her coronation—and her teacher is the person who intimidates her most, the prickly and unconventional Princess Amaranthine (called Mare), sister of her betrothed.

When a shocking assassination leaves the kingdom reeling, Mare and Denna reluctantly join forces to search for the culprit. As the two work together, each discovers there’s more to the other than she thought. Mare is surprised by Denna’s intelligence and bravery, while Denna is drawn to Mare’s independent streak. Soon their friendship is threatening to blossom into something more.

But with dangerous conflict brewing that makes the alliance more important than ever, acting on their feelings could be deadly. Forced to choose between their duty and their hearts, Mare and Denna must find a way to save their kingdoms—and each other.


Of Fire and Stars...

Alright guys... so I am going to be totally honest with you. I did not love this one. I liked it , but there were definitely a lot of times where I found my interest waning. There were great elements to the story, though. It definitely was not all bad.

First off, I want to reiterate, there were times when I liked the story. When the story moved outside of the castle, it become instantly more enjoyable for me. I felt like, when the story was within the castle walls, it lost a lot of the mysterious vibe that it should have had. There were more dialogue scenes, and things that just didn't work for me. When outside the walls, the book came to life. I loved the description of the city streets and the bars, the sense of danger that hovered over everything. Those were the best parts. And towards the end of the story, the last few chapters, I was a little more invested. The stakes were higher, and the emotions were up, and I felt that pull again.

The characters were all written well, but the standout was absolutely Mare... I loved her attitude, her unwillingness to bend to the rules that everyone wants her to adhere to. I loved that she loved her horses, and was a strong, fierce women. I also loved the soft side of her when it made an appearance. It made her seem more REAL to me. Denna was a good character too. By the end of the book, I loved her. I loved what she could do!

So.. would I read a sequel? Surprisingly, yes! I think that, with the way things ended, if a sequel were to pop up the action could be non-stop. And, as sad as it was, I liked the path that Mare and Denna were on at the end. And I have to say... the writing really is tremendous.

Jaime Lynn

Jaime Reviews ~ The Flame Never Dies (The Stars Never Rise #2) by Rachel Vincent

By Rachel Vincent
Published on August 16, 2016
Published by: Delacorte Press/MIRA Ink
Source: Around the World ARC Tours
For fans of Cassandra Clare and Richelle Mead comes the unputdownable sequel to The Stars Never Rise, a book Rachel Caine, author of the bestselling Morganville Vampires series, called “haunting, unsettling, and eerily beautiful.” 

ONE SPARK WILL RISE. Nina Kane was born to be an exorcist. And since uncovering the horrifying truth—that the war against demons is far from over—seventeen-year-old Nina and her pregnant younger sister, Mellie, have been on the run, incinerating the remains of the demon horde as they go. 

In the badlands, Nina, Mellie, and Finn, the fugitive and rogue exorcist who saved her life, find allies in a group of freedom fighters. They also face a new threat: Pandemonia, a city full of demons. But this fresh new hell is the least of Nina’s worries. The well of souls ran dry more than a century ago, drained by the demons secretly living among humans, and without a donor soul, Mellie’s child will die within hours of its birth.

Nina isn’t about to let that happen . . . even if it means she has to make the ultimate sacrifice.


The Flame Never Dies...

 The Stars Never Rise was a fantastic story. When the chance to read the sequel came about, I jumped all over it. I was a little hesitant to start reading it once I had it in my hands. Second stories can be very hit and miss, and I did not want this one to be a miss. Thankfully, I was hooked immediately. 

 This story starts off a few months after the ending of the first book. Anathema has been living in the badlands fighting degenerates and raiding Church caravans for food and supplies. On the way back to their hideout from one of these raids, they see a little boy standing beside a car on the road. Stopping to investigate, they discover a grisly scene. They decide to take the boy with them. thus leading to some horrific events they never could have seen coming. The one good thing that comes from all of this is finding a group of freedom fighters. They become allies, and teach each other, becoming friends along the way. After a false labor, and the disappearance of one of their own, everything goes haywire. Grayson and Nina find themselves in the one place they never wanted to see; Pandemonium, a city of demons. A fight for their lives ensues, and a chance to make a difference in this never-ending war. 

 This book made me cry. A lot. And it made me fall all the more in love with these amazing kids. Rachel Vincent has a knack for writing the best kind of characters. Even the annoying ones that you just want to slap sometimes are so easy to love. The stakes in this one are so much higher, and it made for a non-stop, flat-out thrill ride.
 I loved the ending of the book, but I haven't seen anything about a third book yet. The only way this book becomes less than stellar for me is if there isn't another book to finish off what has been started in this amazing series. There is definitely a need for a final war. And a chance for Nina to get her family back!

Jaime Lynn

The Killer in Me by Margot Harrison ~ Tour Review and Giveaway


The Killer in Me
by Margot Harrison
Publisher: Disney-Hyperion
Release Date: July 12th 2016
Genre: Young Adult, Mystery, Thriller, Horror, Contemporary, Fiction
Rate:4 Stars!

Synopsis:

Hasn't he lived long enough? Why not? I could take him like a thief in the night.

This is how the Thief thinks. He serves death, the vacuum, the unknown. He’s always waiting. Always there.

Seventeen-year-old Nina Barrows knows all about the Thief. She’s intimately familiar with his hunting methods: how he stalks and kills at random, how he disposes of his victims’ bodies in an abandoned mine in the deepest, most desolate part of a desert.

Now, for the first time, Nina has the chance to do something about the serial killer that no one else knows exists. With the help of her former best friend, Warren, she tracks the Thief two thousand miles, to his home turf—the deserts of New Mexico.

But the man she meets there seems nothing like the brutal sociopath with whom she’s had a disturbing connection her whole life. To anyone else, Dylan Shadwell is exactly what he appears to be: a young veteran committed to his girlfriend and her young daughter. As Nina spends more time with him, she begins to doubt the truth she once held as certain: Dylan Shadwell is the Thief. She even starts to wonder . . . what if there is no Thief?



The Killer in Me started off slow. Really slow. It took me time to get into the story, but I am glad that I stuck it out. While it was missing the high creep factor that I was SO hoping for, there was definitely enough of a weird vibe to it to tide me over. 

Since Nina was a little girl, every night when she closes her eyes and falls asleep, she jumps into the mind of The Thief. She has been with him as he has grown up from a little boy whose father took his own life, to a grown man who takes the lies of others. She knows where he lives, his girlfriend and her little girl, his favorite spot to bury things. And she can't take it anymore. She can't handle seeing anyone else murdered by his hands. With her used-to-be-best-friend-might-become-something-more-friend Warren, Nina plans a road trip that she hopes will finally stop a killer. If she doesn't wind up as his next victim. When she meets Thief in person though, she starts to question everything she has always thought to be true. Could Dylan Shadwell really be the Thief after all?

Once the story finally clicked with me, I was hooked. The story isn't really fast-paced, but it is steady and something is always going on. Emotional, romantic, even some sillier and lighter times. And the characters are wonderfully written. Nina is a very complex character. Not the easiest to relate to, but I thoroughly enjoyed trying to understand her. Warren was just plain precious. I adored his protective instinct, I loved him teaching her in the beginning. He loves her deeply, no matter what, and I love him. And Thief? Well, you just have to find out for yourself, I think?! 

Overall, I really ended up enjoying this story. I am so glad that I didn't give up on it. I would definitely tell you to try this one out, especially if you are a fan of dark atmosphere, strange psychological weirdness and really well-written stories with complex characters and wonderful world-building. 




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Follow the The Killer In Me by Margot Harrison Blog Tour and don't miss anything! Click on the banner to see the tour schedule.






I was raised in the wilds of New York by lovely, nonviolent parents who somehow never managed to prevent me from staying up late to read scary books. I now work at an alt-weekly newspaper in Vermont, where my favorite part of the job is, of course, reviewing scary books and movies. The Killer in Me is my first novel.










Jaime Reviews ~ Because I Love You by Tori Rigby

By Tori Rigby
Published on May 17, 2016
Published by: Blaze Publishing, LLC.
Source: Netgalley
Eight weeks after sixteen-year-old Andie Hamilton gives her virginity to her best friend, “the stick” says she’s pregnant. 

Her friends treat her like she’s carrying the plague, her classmates torture and ridicule her, and the boy she thought loved her doesn’t even care. Afraid to experience the next seven months alone, she turns to her ex-boyfriend, Neil Donaghue, a dark-haired, blue-eyed player. With him, she finds comfort and the support she desperately needs to make the hardest decision of her life: whether or not to keep the baby.

Then a tragic accident leads Andie to discover Neil’s keeping a secret that could dramatically alter their lives, and she's forced to make a choice. But after hearing her son’s heartbeat for the first time, she doesn’t know how she’ll ever be able to let go.


Because I Love You...

This stinkin book made me cry... ugly cry like you wouldn't believe. But I loved it. It wasn't the most perfectly written book in the world, but what it lacked in perfect writing, it more than made up for in heart. I will take heart any day.

Andie has grown up in a Christian household, with parents and family who are dedicated to God. She has been in church every Sunday, rain or shine, sick or well. Since her dad passed away two years ago, her mom has had to work two jobs to support them, but they are happy. They have a good relationship, though it can be strained at times. After a night of drinking, Andie's best friend tells her he loves her and they have sex. Six weeks later, the test comes back positive. She never could have predicted where her life would end up, with those two little lines.

Poor Andie goes through some of the worst crap you could imagine in this book. My heart broke for her, over and over again. But she grew so much from those first few chapters, and I loved her fiercely. The struggles that she faces at school, learning what a true friend is, finding love with the least likely person. She made mistakes and dumb decisions, but she learned and grew from them. The relationship Andie and her mom had was sweet and honest, and an aspect that I appreciated... I can't even, though.... :( And NEIL! Let me tell you, up until now I have had plenty of book boyfriends, but they PALE in comparison. Wow! And Jill was a best friend I would LOVE to have in my corner.

The end of this story was heartbreaking and uplifting at the same time. The decisions that were made, the FEELS.... The ending was everything I could have hoped for. Tori Rigby is a writer that pours her entire heart out on the page, and I love every minute of it. I can't wait for her to do it again!!!

Jaime Lynn

Here's a giveaway for y'all.... Just because!!





Hello there, y'all! I seem to have found myself in possession of an extra hardback copy of this wonderful little book. What better way to share it than with a giveaway! Enter away, and good luck to y'all!!

This giveaway is for US only... Sorry international folks, I will have a giveaway for y'all soon!





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Jaime Reviews ~ If I Fix You by Abigail Johnson

By Abigail Johnson
Published on October 25, 2016
Published by: Harlequin Teen
Source: Around the World ARC Tours
Readers of Sarah Dessen, Cammie McGovern and Morgan Matson will adore this thought-provoking, complex and romantic contemporary novel from debut author Abigail Johnson, about finding the strength to put yourself back together when everything you know has fallen apart.

When sixteen-year-old Jill Whitaker’s mom walks out—with a sticky note as a goodbye—only Jill knows the real reason she’s gone. But how can she tell her father? Jill can hardly believe the truth herself.

Suddenly, the girl who likes to fix things—cars, relationships, romances, people—is all broken up. Used to be, her best friend, tall, blond and hot flirt Sean Addison, could make her smile in seconds. But not anymore. They don’t even talk.

With nothing making sense, Jill tries to pick up the pieces of her life. But when a new guy moves in next door, intense, seriously cute, but with scars—on the inside and out—that he thinks don’t show, Jill finds herself trying to make things better for Daniel. But over one long, hot Arizona summer, she realizes she can’t fix anyone’s life until she fixes her own. And she knows just where to start . . .
 



If I Fix You...

 When I first started reading this one, and the MC was working on a car in her dad's garage and LOVING it, I fell in love with this story. I am a huge lover of working on cars, and try to do it as much as possible. This book and I instantly clicked... and it only got better from there!

 After work at the shop one evening, Jill heads home to meet her best friend Sean at her house. When she opens the front door, everything in her world just stops. In that instant, she loses her mom, her best friend... Only to wake up in the morning with a Post It note telling her that her mom needs to go ind herself. Jill and her (WONDERFUL) dad start picking up the pieces, trying to move on with their lives. Jill and Sean start trying to talk a little again, and things seem to be going well. But on the inside, Jill is just broken. One night, sitting on the roof outside her bedroom window, Jill hears a terrible fight going on, and sees a woman throwing things at a man, hitting him. This hits too close to home for Jill, after listening to her mom and dad fight for years, so Jill throws her soda can at the house. When it accidentally breaks the window, the man comes storming out. After a rocky start, Daniel and Jill strike up a friendship. They both can talk to one another about things they can't seem to speak of to anyone else. There is one huge problem though, and that problem could ruin everything. For them both. 

 The characters in If I Fix You were so well-written. Jill's character was one of my favorites, with her love of cars, her emotions always rang true. Her deep love for her dad shone through the pages. When she gets hit with another bombshell, later in the story, her reactions were honest and emotional. Sean won me over thoroughly with his sheer determination to win Jill back. Daniel was a great guy whose emotional state led him to do some stupid things, but it was almost understandable, knowing what you learn about him. My favorite character, though, was by far Jill's dad. He was the epitome of a great father, even when he handled himself badly. His and Jill's relationship was the "something special" in this book, and I would read it all over again, just for that. 

 If I Fix You is an emotional, beautifully written story. Abigail Johnson is dang good at drawing a reader in to a story. I loved this book, and I happily recommend it to every one of you!

Jaime Lynn

Jaime Reviews ~ My Best Friend's Exorcism by Grady Hendrix

By Grady Hendrix
Published on May 17, 2016
Published by: Quirk Books
Source: Edelweiss/Netgalley
Abby and Gretchen have been best friends since fifth grade, when they bonded over a shared love of E.T., roller-skating parties, and scratch-and-sniff stickers. But when they arrive at high school, things change. Gretchen begins to act . . . different. And as the strange coincidences and bizarre behavior start to pile up, Abby realizes there’s only one possible explanation: Gretchen, her favorite person in the world, has a demon living inside her. And Abby is not about to let anyone or anything come between her and her best friend. With help from some unlikely allies, Abby embarks on a quest to save Gretchen. But is their friendship powerful enough to beat the devil? 

My Best Friend's Exorcism...

I just finished this one yesterday, and let me me tell you... I loved every single minute of it. It was strange and weird and unique and a little bit crazy, and for me it was absolutely perfect! Grady Hendrix, you have a new fan!

Abby and Gretchen are best friends. They have been since Abby's birthday party in fifth grade when Gretchen was the only one to show up. Since that day, they have become inseparable. Years later, Abby, Gretchen and their other two friends, Margaret and Glee decide that they want to use LSD, just to see what happens. Hours later, after a skinny-dipping gone wrong, Gretchen goes missing, Abby searches all night long, but they don't find her until the next morning. Gretchen isn't at all herself, but Abby thinks she just needs to sleep. Little does she know, things are getting ready to change in ways she could never have guessed.

The relationship between Abby and Gretchen is one of the best things I have read in YA fiction to date. The love these two girls share is something that can't be shattered, not matter the tests thrown their way. And there are some huge tests. Gretchen turns into an horrible person, and yet Abby never once gives up on her. And Gretchen doesn't stop believing that Abby can save her. This depiction of friendship, of such an unbreakable bond, made this book a top-notch read.

Pacing, plot, characters, world-building, writing, characterization... all of the things that get mixed together to make a story, were all done to almost-perfection in My Best Friend's Exorcism. The 80's setting was incredibly nostalgic! And the creepy was downright creepy, just maybe not in the way I was expecting.

I adore this book, y'all! So much. I really hope that you will give it a shot. 

Jaime Lynn

Jaime Reviews ~ Darkness Released (Darkness Series Book 2) by Candis Vargo

By Candis Vargo
Published on April 12, 2016
Published by: Limitless Publishing LLC
Source: Xpresso Book Tours
For Hailey James, the ghosts of the past have never truly been laid to rest… 

After a troubled childhood and one last visit to her family’s abandoned home, everything in Hailey’s life seems to be going according to plan. The business she runs with her best friend, Pat, has hit big time success, and she isn’t even twenty-five. 

When night terrors come out to play, her future is in jeopardy… 

With the demolition of her childhood home, and her twenty-fifth birthday drawing near, Hailey’s nightmares become even worse. She is no longer able to do her job. At Pat’s insistence, Hailey undergoes hypnosis. She doesn’t remember much of her childhood, but when she sees a man dressed all in red in her visions, Hailey knows he is the key to her understanding. 

Hailey can’t seem to escape her past and the ghostly women who haunt it. But she can break the cycle of suffering that has surrounded the women of her family, especially with the future of her little niece, Lilly, on the line. 

To move forward, sometimes we must go back… 

Hailey’s future remains uncertain if she can’t face her demons. She can only hope she will be able to defeat the evil which has pervaded her childhood and threatens her family. 

When the shadows of her past threaten to cloud her future, Hailey must find the strength to unlock the truth of her troubled childhood.




Darkness Released...

I don't generally read short stories, because 9 out of the 10 that I do read just don't work for me. Trying to pack an entire stories worth of ideas into a few short pages, in this case 114 pages, can't be an easy feat. Most of the time, it feels so.... incomplete. With Darkness Released, the entire story felt really rushed and muddled. Why did I even bother, you ask? Well, take a look at that creepy cover... and it is a horror story. Sometimes, I just can't resist!

In Darkness Released, Hailey's childhood home is set to be torn down. She is not nostalgic, or sad. She is happy that the house, along with all of its bad memories, will be put to rest. What she doesn't realize is that, once the house is gone, so is the protection surrounding her. A protection that her mother died for. The night the house is torn down, four days before her birthday, Hailey starts having vivid dreams Who are these horrible, rotting women showing themselves to her? And what is Hailey supposed to do when they start showing up when she is awake?

From the beginning, this story just felt like it was rushed. There was absolutely no character development, the world-building was non-existent, and the histories that were presented were not in-depth enough. The entire story just felt like it was trying to make it to the end, without any worries about the getting there.

The best part was defintely the end of the story. I actually really appreciated the gesture at the end. It made a really nice, emotionally charged ending. I wish it had been drawn out a little longer, but I definitely appreciated it.

I hate writing negative reviews, I really do. And I hope that, if you are interested in the story, you will still check it out.

Jaime Lynn
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