Jaime Review's ~ It's a Wonderful Death by Sarah J. Schmitt ~ Blog Tour & Giveaway!

By Sarah J. Schmitt
Published on October 6, 2015
Published by: Sky Pony Press
Source: YA Bound Tours
Seventeen-year-old RJ always gets what she wants. So when her soul is accidentally collected by a distracted Grim Reaper, somebody in the afterlife better figure out a way to send her back from the dead or heads will roll. But in her quest for mortality, she becomes a pawn in a power struggle between an overzealous archangel and Death Himself. The tribunal presents her with two options: she can remain in the lobby, where souls wait to be processed, until her original lifeline expires, or she can replay three moments in her life in an effort to make choices that will result in a future deemed worthy of being saved. It sounds like a no-brainer. She’ll take a walk down memory lane. How hard can changing her future be?

But with each changing moment, RJ’s life begins to unravel, until this self-proclaimed queen bee is a social pariah. She begins to wonder if walking among the living is worth it if she has to spend the next sixty years as an outcast. Too quickly, RJ finds herself back in limbo, her time on Earth once again up for debate.

RJ is a snarky, unapologetic, almost unredeemable, very real girl. Her story is funny and moving, and teens will easily connect with her plight. Prepare to meet the Grim Reaper, who’s cuter than you’d expect; Hawaiian shirt–wearing Death Himself; Saint Peter (who likes to play Cornhole); and Al, the handler for the three-headed hound that guards the gates of Hell. This cast of characters accompanies RJ through her time in the afterlife and will do their best to gently shove her in the right direction. 

Jaime's Review...

 What a wonderful, quirky, surprising story this was! I really enjoyed reading this little gem of a story, and I am looking forward to reading more from Sarah J. Schmitt! 

 RJ was an awesome MC. I loved her voice. She was a true teen, a terrible one at that when she was alive. She made horrible choices, even when she knew they were wrong. She hurt people that she cared about for the sake of staying popular. But she had heart, and you could feel it. Even more so as the story progressed. I loved her backbone, that she refused to just accept her fate, or take no for an answer. And the best part about her was her willingness to recognize the wrongs that she had done, and her true desire to make things right. She was a character I rooted for from the get-go! 

 Sarah J. Schmitt has created an world that I found endlessly fascinating. There were so many aspects to it, and each place that RJ visits in the story is very unique, and intriguing. The arrivals and departure trains, the receiving room and the viewing room. The different levels, the routes the characters take. The courtrooms, the 3 headed dogs guarding the gates of hell. It was a world I would gladly visit again, and I give major kudos for it's creation!

 Every single one of the secondary characters had a role to play, from RJ to her Reaper to Death Himself and everyone in between. There were so many fantastic people wrapped up in this 320 page book, and they were perfectly written. From the ones that I loved to the ones that I loathed, each one added another element, another layer to the story. The characters absolutely made this story! Look out for the two playing Cornhole! 

 From the characters to the world-building, to the lessons wrapped up in a light-hearted package, Sarah has written a book that can and will be enjoyed by people both young and young at heart. The ending will throw you for a loop, and might bring some tears to yours eyes (maybe lots of them), but it was the only way the story could have ended. I am such a huge fan of this book, and I am so glad that I was able to be a part of the tour so that I can hopefully talk some people into giving it a try! 

About the Author...

Sarah J. Schmitt is a K-8 school librarian and Youth Service Professional for Teens at a public library who, in addition to planning a variety of events, enjoys opening up the world of books to reluctant readers. She runs a teen writing program that combines Skype visits from well-known authors and screenwriters and critique group style feedback.

Prior to immersing herself in the world of the written word, Sarah earned her Masters of Science in Higher Education Administration and Student Affairs from Indiana University where she worked with first year college students as they acclimated to college life. Sarah lives outside of Indianapolis with her husband, two kidlets and a cat who might actually be a secret agent. She is an active member of SCBWI, ALA and the Indiana Library Federation and is a regular participant at the Midwest Writer's Workshop. Her debut novel, IT'S A WONDERFUL DEATH, comes out Fall 2015 from Sky Pony Press.


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Jaime Reviews ~ The Queen B* Strikes Back (The Queen B* 2) by Crista McHugh ~ Blog Tour Review and Giveaway!

By Crista McHugh
Published on September 29,2015
Published by: Crista McHugh
Source: Rockstar PR
Alexis Wyndham isn't quite sure what to think about her "friendship" with star quarterback, Brett Pederson. Sure, he has more brains than the entire football team combined. Not to mention that fact he's a great kisser. When he asks her to help him with his college admission essay, she isn't sure if he's doing it to spend more time with her or if he's just using her for her intelligence. But after her nemesis, Summer Hoyt, makes it clear she's not finished chasing after Brett, the war is on, and the head cheerleader will find out that hell hath no fury like a Queen B*.

Goodreads | B&N | Amazon | Kobo | iTunes | Google Play 

About Book One... 

After years of being the subject of ridicule, she revels in her ability to make the in-crowd cower via the exposés on her blog, The Eastline Spy. Now that she's carved out her place in the high school hierarchy, she uses her position to help the unpopular kids walking the hallways.
*Saving a freshman from bullies? Check.
*Swapping insults with the head cheerleader? Check.
*Falling for the star quarterback? So not a part of her plan.

But when Brett offers to help her solve the mystery of who’s posting X-rated videos from the girls’ locker room, she’ll have to swallow her pride and learn to see past the high school stereotypes she’s never questioned—until now.

My Thoughts...

 I must admit that I was a little surprised at myself when I signed up for the blog tour of Confessions. It isn't the type of book I gravitate towards frequently, but sometimes I need a good laugh and I thought it would have the potential. And it absolutely did make me laugh. Maybe swoon a bit. Definitely cringe! Anyway, when I received the email to sign up for the tours for this sequel and the final book, I had no choice. I am so hooked on this series, and I hope I can get a few others hooked on it too! 

 The Queen B* Strikes Back starts the morning after Confessions ends. Alexis is wondering if she made a horrible choice, telling Brett she just wants to be his friend. And it doesn't help when he shows up at her house, early in the morning, and carries her caveman style out of her house and drags her to a school sponsored car wash. When they arrive together, all activity ceases, and everyone stares. That reaffirms she made the right decision. After some competition between the various cliques for amount of money raised, a water fight breaks out. All of a sudden, Bretts arms are around Alexis.... and she runs. Thank goodness for best friends! 

 This book is more or less about Alexis going back and forth in her head about having a relationship with Brett. He does things that make her feel like she is special, and they would be perfect together, and then he does something completely opposite and she withdraws. It was an interesting give and take. Sometimes, I got frustrated with Alexis, but then Brett would do something and I was rooting for her completely, even though my heart was shipping them in a huge way. The dynamics between these two are hilarious, and swoon-worthy, and frustrating.... I loved every minute of it. 

 The growth that Alexis shows is also something that captured my attention. I love that she is starting to realize that she can still do good for the underdogs, without having to be a total B*. She really starts to grow in this book, and I very much enjoy watching her transformation. She is still this snarky, b* of a girl, but she also is learning about compassion. She deals with a lot in this story from her enemy, Summer, and she learns what betrayal feels like. She also goes through some really intense, scary situations, and everything works together to build her character and make her even more wonderful as an MC.  

 As for the other relationships in the story, Alexis and her sister Taylor are still not what you would call close. But towards the end, there is a big change in the sisters relationship that I can't wait to see play out. And Lexi and her BFF's are still such an odd trio, but I adore them. 

 Crista McHugh took a chance towards the end of the book, and I give her mad props for it. I think there are already a lot of life lessons wrapped up in this series, if you pay attention. But with this sequel, she brought something incredibly serious to the forefront, and I applaud her for it. It added some meat to the series, and I hope that continues on into book 3!

 Okay, okay.. I know I have rambled for long enough. Just let me say one more thing. Well, two more. First, read this series! Give it a chance. If it isn't for you, that's alright. But I think it might just surprise a lot of people! And two, thank you so much to Rockstar PR for letting me be a part of this tour. Bring on Queen B* and the Homecoming King!

About the Author...

Crista McHugh is a NEW YORK TIMES and USA TODAY BESTSELLING author of fantasy and romance with heroines who are smart, sexy, and anything but ordinary.

She currently lives in the Audi-filled suburbs of Seattle with her husband and two children, maintaining her alter ego of mild-mannered physician by day while she continues to pursue writing on nights and weekends.

Just for laughs, here are some of the jobs she’s had in the past to pay the bills: barista, bartender, sommelier, stagehand, actress, morgue attendant, and autopsy assistant.

And she’s also a recovering LARPer, (she blames it on her crazy college days).


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Jaime Reviews ~ Firewalker (The Worldwalker Trilogy #2) by Josephine Angelini

By Josephine Angelini
Published on September 1, 2015
Published by: Feiwel and Friends
Source: Publisher
Worlds divide, magic slays, and love lies in the second book of Josephine Angelini’s The Worldwalker Trilogy.

"You think I’m a monster, but my choices, as ruthless as they seem, are justified."

Lily is back in her own universe, and she's ready to start a new life with Rowan by her side. True, she almost died in the Pyre that fueled their escape from New Salem, and must hide her magic for the safety of everyone she cares about, but compared to fighting the Woven, the monstrous creatures inhabiting the alternate Salem, life is looking pretty good.

Unfortunately, Lillian, ruthless ruler of the 13 Cities, is not willing to let Lily go that easily. If she can’t persuade Lily to return to her world, she will force her to come back by doing away with the ones she loves.

Picking up right where Trial By Fire left off, Firewalker is another sexy, fast-paced, heartbreaking thrill ride from internationally bestselling author Josephine Angelini!

Number 2's are always tough... 

 And in some cases, that just means heartbreaking. THIS was heartbreaking. I am not going to say too much about Firewalker, because my words won't mean anything. I am just going to tell you how I felt about the story, and let you read it for the details.

 Firewalker starts right as Trial by Fire ends, with Lily and Rowan back in her world, after being burned on the pyre. Lily is barely alive when her mom and sister find them, and bring them back home. It is a strange and horrifying adjustment for Juliet. Her sister has been gone for months, and now she is back almost burned to death, with a strange boy telling her she can't take her sister to the hospital. Finally Juliet relents, and starts to learn the truth about the world her sister has been in. Samantha, the girls mom, is supportive of Rowans decision, and they take Lily home. Juliet watches Rowan heal Lily, and her eyes are opened to something new. Magic.

 From almost the beginning of this story, there is this impending sense of doom. It comes in the form of Lily and Lillian's conversations in the Mist. Learning the truth about Lillian and her reasons for the things she has done. From Tristan of Lily's world, and several others, being drawn to Lily for reasons they can't quite explain. It comes from the simple fact that there is a war brewing, and Lily and Rowan will not escape having to return to his world, bringing others with them who never should have been involved.  There is a sense of doom, and as the story progressed it became stronger. Then, heartbreak... And here is where I am done with details. You just have to give it a shot!

 Lily and Rowan, Lillian and both Juliet's, both Tristan's, all show tremendous growth in this sequel. They grow as individuals, and the bonds between each of them grow stronger. We meet some new characters, who add purpose to the story. I learned so much more about each of them, and it made the story so much better. The world-building continues to be incredible in book 2 and we learn more about the world of Witches and Outlanders. There were so many fantastic aspects that I loved. There were friendships forged, and renewed, betrayals... Firewalker is so full of emotion, and my love for this series grew tenfold. I cannot wait for the chance to finally see where this story ends. And be warned, the ending of this one will hurt you!

 * I was given a copy of Firewalker by the publisher for review. This did not change my opinions of the story in any way. *

Walk on Earth a Stranger by Rae Carson ~ Release Day Celebration!

I am so excited that WALK ON EARTH A STRANGER by Rae Carson releases today and that I get to share the news, along with an awesome giveaway!
If you haven’t yet heard about this wonderful new series by Rae Carson, be sure to check out all the details below.

This blitz also includes a giveaway for a set of the GIRL OF FIRE AND THORNS series (in paperback format). US only. So if you’d like a chance to win, enter in the Rafflecopter at the bottom of this post.

About The Book:

Author: Rae Carson
Pub. Date: September 22, 2015
Publisher: Greenwillow Books
Pages: 448

The first book in a new trilogy from acclaimed New York Times bestselling author Rae Carson. A young woman with the magical ability to sense the presence of gold must flee her home, taking her on a sweeping and dangerous journey across Gold Rush–era America.

Lee Westfall has a secret. She can sense the presence of gold in the world around her. Veins deep beneath the earth, pebbles in the river, nuggets dug up from the forest floor. The buzz of gold means warmth and life and home—until everything is ripped away by a man who wants to control her. Left with nothing, Lee disguises herself as a boy and takes to the trail across the country. Gold was discovered in California, and where else could such a magical girl find herself, find safety? Rae Carson, author of the acclaimed Girl of Fire and Thorns trilogy, dazzles with this new fantasy that subverts both our own history and familiar fantasy tropes.

Walk on Earth a Stranger, the first book in this new trilogy, introduces—as only Rae Carson can—a strong heroine, a perilous road, a fantastical twist, and a slow-burning romance. Includes a map and author’s note on historical research. 

Read chapter 1 of WALK ON EARTH A STRANGER annotated by Rae Carson HERE!

About Rae:
Rae Carson is the New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of the acclaimed Girl of Fire and Thorns trilogy. Her next book, Walk On Earth A Stranger, will be available September 22, 2015. She lives in Arizona with her husband.

Connect with the Author: Website | Twitter | Facebook | Goodreads

Giveaway Details:

1 winner will receive a set of the 3 GIRL OF FIRE AND THORNS series (in paperback format). US Only.

Ends on September 30th at Midnight EST!

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Jaime Reviews ~ Truthwitch (The Witchlands #1) by Susan Dennard

By Susan Dennard
Published on January 5, 2016
Published by: Tor Teen
Source: Around the World ARC Tours
On a continent ruled by three empires, some are born with a “witchery”, a magical skill that sets them apart from others.

In the Witchlands, there are almost as many types of magic as there are ways to get in trouble—as two desperate young women know all too well.

Safiya is a Truthwitch, able to discern truth from lie. It’s a powerful magic that many would kill to have on their side, especially amongst the nobility to which Safi was born. So Safi must keep her gift hidden, lest she be used as a pawn in the struggle between empires.

Iseult, a Threadwitch, can see the invisible ties that bind and entangle the lives around her—but she cannot see the bonds that touch her own heart. Her unlikely friendship with Safi has taken her from life as an outcast into one of reckless adventure, where she is a cool, wary balance to Safi’s hotheaded impulsiveness.

Safi and Iseult just want to be free to live their own lives, but war is coming to the Witchlands. With the help of the cunning Prince Merik (a Windwitch and ship’s captain) and the hindrance of a Bloodwitch bent on revenge, the friends must fight emperors, princes, and mercenaries alike, who will stop at nothing to get their hands on a Truthwitch.

Pre-Order this one, y'all! Amazing! 

 There are not enough words in the English language to express how much love I have for this book. So, here are a few words in other languages...Fantastico! Perfezione! Schon! Terribilis (It looks bad, but it isn't!) Truthwitch is the first book that I have read by Susan Dennard, but I can guarantee that this will not be the case for much longer. 

 Truthwitch is a story about Threadsisters Safiya and Iseult. But it is about so much more than that. It is about friendships, sisterhood, brotherhood, what it means to be a family. It is about fighting for the right thing, the good thing, until you have no fight left but you continue fighting anyway. It is about profound loss, and finding the strength to move on. Truthwitch is about how relationships can change you and shape you, enemy or friend. There is so much beauty and wonder, fear and hope in this story. 

 I am not going to tell you a single plot point to Truthwitch. The little bit that they synopsis gives is just enough to grab your interest and make you want to read it. To spoil anything else about this story would be plain cruel. There are three things that I WILL tell you. The writing is magnificent. There are some authors who seem to naturally having the talent to write in the perfect way, their words conveying the most meaning, the dialogue flowing beautifully. Susan Dennard is one of those authors. Second, the world-building is incredible. I could close my eyes and picture in vivid detail the world that Safi and Iseult live in. The descriptions of one land in this story made me close my eyes, and cry. Finally, the characters are so true to life, so believable. I rooted for them, I hated them, I pitied them, I feared them, I was repulsed, and curious, and drawn to.... Each character that graces the pages of Truthwitch has their own personality, their own voice. There were no two characters that were alike, and not one character that felt lifeless. 

 I am blown away. Truthwitch is easily at the top of my 2015 reads, it will easily be at the top of 2016. Heck, it is easily at the top of my all time favorites list. I cannot wait to reread this story, to join Safi and Iseult on their next adventure, and to hope that a very new and sometimes volatile but always passionate, love has the chance it deserves to really bloom. Everyone, young and old, should give this book a chance. Everyone!

 Thank you, as always, to Around the World ARC Tours. This one was the best one yet! 

Jaime Reviews ~ Lucid by Jay Bonansinga

By Jay Bonansinga
Published on April 28,2015
Published by: Smashwords
Source: Xpresso Book Tours
Lori Blaine is not your average seventeen-year-old high school student. Cool and iconoclastic in her dread-locks and natty thrift shop garb, with an IQ that's off the charts, she is the ersatz leader of a pack of Goth kids that circle around her in the halls of Valesburg Central like a school of pilot fish. Lori speaks softly, but when she does speak, people have a tendency to listen. 

But Lori Blaine has one problem: The door. 

Lori's dreams are haunted by this strange, recurring symbol. The door is always there on the periphery... beckoning to her, daring her to see what might be waiting for her on the other side. Finally, at the urging of an overzealous school psychologist, Lori Blaine decides to face her fears. The next night, she goes through the dream door... and immediately plunges into a shattered looking glass world in which nothing is as it seems and evil awaits around every corner. 

But when Lori fights back, all hell breaks loose.

Created by the New York Times bestselling author of THE WALKING DEAD: DESCENT...LUCID is a mind-bender of a contemporary supernatural thriller for Young Adults. 

My thoughts on Lucid:

 I am going to try and keep this review short and as sweet and positive as possible. But I have to go ahead and put it out there that, though I enjoyed the idea behind this story, I feel like it missed the mark in a lot of ways. I was looking forward to diving into Lori's dreams, and maybe getting spooked a time or two, but I ended up being bogged down in the mire and never quite being pulled out of it. 

 The story starts with an extremely tired Lori in the office of the school psychologist who is very persistent with her. He wants to know about her dreams, and finally just to get him to stop talking, she tells him about the Door. The Door has been in her dreams for years, but it scares her and she ignores it as much as possible. The psychologist suggests to Lori that she stop ignoring it, face her fears, and go through the Door, and hopefully she will beat the fear and get some sleep. 

 So Lori ends up going through the Door, and into a world of darkness, branching tunnels, and Bogy's, where she meets several other people who seem to be sharing her dream. It is here she learns the true meaning of being a Lucid dreamer, and figures out what her purpose of being a "Lucie" is. She learns what powers a Lucid holds over dreams, and she is given a puzzle to figure out about herself. Once she figures this puzzle out, she has the chance to make a huge difference in the fight against the dark side. 

 My issue with Lucid lies with the writing more than the story. There seemed, to me, to be so much story that should have been edited out, could have been edited out, and the pared down story could have been worlds better. There was so much extra information, or unnecessary paragraphs, and it very much weighed the story down for me. I was looking forward to story of dreamworlds, and while we do get a bit of one, it is always the same one. And the focus was taken off of being a Lucid dreamer and thrown into a story about the fight between Lucies and demons pretty quickly. It was a little disappointing, but even this storyline could have been made much better with some serious editing.
 As far as characters went, Lori was a decent character. There was a lot of focus on her being Goth with dreadlocked hair and a genius IQ, but we weren't really shown that through her characterization. It was definitely a big time case of telling vs. showing, and it made it less believable. In Lori's credit though, she was a tough chick which I appreciated. The rest of the characters in the story, including the insta-love interest Nick, fell very flat. Nick was the least flat, but he was basically there to be Lori's love interest, and that was his role. The other characters, like Lori's best friend Hugo, were all very bland characters. I never felt a pull towards any of them, which made the emotional connection I look for pretty much null. 

 I really, really dislike writing negative reviews. It makes me feel terrible, and sick to my stomach. But sometimes, we all have to do it, and I would rather be honest about it than mislead someone. I genuinely hope that, if this book interests you, you will give it a fair shot. On a positive note, that cover is AWESOME! 

Jaime Reviews ~ Hotel Ruby by Suzanne Young

By Suzanne Young
Published on November 3, 2015
Published by: Simon Pulse
Source: Around the World ARC Tours
When Audrey Casella arrives for an unplanned stay at the grand Hotel Ruby, she’s grateful for the detour. Just months after their mother’s death, Audrey and her brother, Daniel, are on their way to live with their grandmother, dumped on the doorstep of a DNA-matched stranger because their father is drowning in his grief.

Audrey and her family only plan to stay the night, but life in the Ruby can be intoxicating, extending their stay as it provides endless distractions—including handsome guest Elias Lange, who sends Audrey’s pulse racing. However, the hotel proves to be as strange as it is beautiful. Nightly fancy affairs in the ballroom are invitation only, and Audrey seems to be the one guest who doesn't have an invite. Instead, she joins the hotel staff on the rooftop, catching whispers about the hotel’s dark past.

The more Audrey learns about the new people she's met, the more her curiosity grows. She’s torn in different directions—the pull of her past with its overwhelming loss, the promise of a future that holds little joy, and an in-between life in a place that is so much more than it seems…

Welcome to the Ruby.

Welcome to the Ruby....

 Audrey and Daniels dad is driving them to their new life, to live with a grandmother they barely know. Since the death of their mother, none of them are the same. Audrey's dad is barely a dad anymore, and Daniel looks to Audrey as a replacement for their mom. Audrey doesn't know who she is anymore, without her mom and with their lives falling apart. During the endless, awkward drive Audrey falls asleep in the car, listening to an old song on the CD player, and wakes up as their dad turns onto an old, grown up drive. Her and her brother are both confused, but then the woods open up and there is the most beautiful set of iron gates. And then... there is the Ruby. Their dad decides they need to rest for the night, and sees the sign for Hotel Ruby. Once inside, things start happening quickly, everyone starts changing, and Audrey is left to figure out the truth about the Ruby, with the help of some very curious staffers and a handsome boy named Elias, the reason for the nightly party. 

 I was immediately intrigued by Hotel Ruby, and I desperately hoped it would live up to the huge expectations in my head. It may not have lived up to every single one of them, but I loved every stinkin minute of it anyway! Full of creepy vibes, and creepier characters and a mystery that you just can't quite figure out, Hotel Ruby more than made my day. I am seriously sad that the ending came, and this one time I wish I had a sequel to look forward to! 

 Audrey, Daniel, Elias.... each and every character in Hotel Ruby had a very distinct, individual voice. I loved Audrey. She was strong and determined, and unendingly loyal to her family and new friends, and to Elias. I loved all of the different relationships that were built in the story. Even though the relationship between Audrey and Elias could definitely be classified as inst-lust, I still really enjoyed them together. Their were relationships filled with animosity, hesitant friendship.... And they made this story even better!

 Hotel Ruby was paced perfectly, the writing was wonderful. And the mystery was like one of those words or answers that is right on the tip of your tongue but you can't quite get there... I loved it! The only thing I feel like was missing was some seriously scary parts, but the story didn't suffer because of it. I still enjoyed every second of it. Please, Suzanne Young, give us another creepy tale... I will be first in line, waiting to read it. 

 Hotel Ruby is perfect for this time of year, when the weather is getting cooler and Halloween is right around the corner. If you are a fan of creepy and strange, this is definitely the story for you. Thanks to Around the World ARC Tours for sending me a copy to review! 

Jaime Review's ~ Ash & Bramble by Sarah Prineas ~ Blog Tour & Giveaway

By Sarah Prineas
Published on September 15, 2016
Published by: HarperTeen
Source: Edelweiss
When the glass slipper just doesn’t fit…

The tale of Cinderella has been retold countless times. But what you know is not the true story.

Pin has no recollection of who she is or how she got to the Godmother’s fortress. She only knows that she is a Seamstress, working day in and out to make ball gowns fit for fairy tales. But she longs to forsake her backbreaking servitude and dares to escape with the brave young Shoemaker.

Pin isn’t free for long before she’s captured again and forced to live the new life the Godmother chooses for her—a fairy tale story, complete with a charming prince—instead of finding her own happily ever after.

Sarah Prineas’s bold fairy tale retelling is a dark and captivating world where swords are more fitting than slippers, young shoemakers are just as striking as princes, and a heroine is more than ready to rescue herself before the clock strikes midnight.

Ash & Bramble was...

 .... Very different. The beginning took some getting used to, but once I found my rhythm and started getting to know the characters, the story became more enjoyable. It isn't a story that makes sense from the beginning. It takes time to start understanding whats happening, and the reasons behind everything. While I had some issues with the story, it was definitely worth the read!

 The story starts with a girl being told to sew. The girl is Nothing. So she sews. But one day, during the middle of sewing with the other Seamstresses, the guards take everyone outside and she witnesses her first flogging. A boy about her age, tied to the post. After, she stops being Nothing. She starts talking for the other Seamstresses, and becomes the foot model for the Shoemaker. During their conversation, she names him Shoe and he gives her the name Pin. Pin tells Shoe that she is leaving, escaping, and she wants him to come. He says no, but she is leaving anyway. Pin starts planning her escape, in earnest after another Seamstress dies trying, and then the story starts to pick up pace. And we slowly get answers. 

 Pin is a good character. Very interesting. She is determined, and strong. She is sure that there is something out there. A Before. I enjoyed her and Shoes interactions. They both showed growth throughout the story. One of the issues I did have though was the MAJOR case of insta-love between these two. Major. But I was able to look past it, and just enjoy their scenes. 

 The story is full of characters who all have the same name. All of the seamstresses are Seamstress, the Jack of all Trades are Jacks, and so on. It was a cool concept, and I liked it. It was interesting to see all of these characters with the same name that has distinct personalities. The different fairy tales that made an appearance in the story was also a favorite part.
 After the first half, the story loses a little bit of oomph. That is the other reason why this one wasn't perfect for me. The momentum dropped, and my interest would wane, here and there. It was very up and down, but the author brought the ending around and I finished the book satisfied. It was left open enough that there might be the chance for a sequel, but if there isn't it would be alright.

 All in all, I did enjoy Ash & Bramble. It was very cute and quirky, with a good cast of interesting characters, and fairy tales woven throughout. I truly enjoy Mrs. Prineas' writing style, and will be more than happy to read whatever she comes up with next! 

 Thanks to Rockstar Book Tours for giving me a spot on this awesome tour! 

About the Author...

Hi there! I'm Sarah Prineas, author of the Magic Thief series published in the US by HarperCollins and in 17 other languages around the world, and the Winterling trilogy. I live in rural Iowa with my mad scientist husband, two kids, and two cats. My next book is called Ash & Bramble, and it's a YA.
Here's my website:


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