Book Review: Crystal Deception (Crystal #1)

Author: Doug J Cooper
Pages: 400
Published: October 10, 2013 (First Published September 15, 2013)
Genre: Science Fiction, Thriller
Rating: 4.5/5

Really need the next one now!

Crystal Deception is the first installment in the Crystal Series by Doug J. Cooper and I thoroughly enjoyed it!

This story follows a few different characters as they prepare for a potential battle in space against the Kardish race that have been lingering just outside of Earth for decades without making a move. Juice, or Dr. Jessica Tallette, has been tasked with creating a new generation of AI crystal that can help navigate and control Earth’s army space ships. As a result, Juice creates Criss.

Criss is locked in his own prison and must make the ultimate choice to save the human race or take off on his own.

There were a crazy amount of layers to this novel and I couldn’t wait for the next big plot point to hit to see how the main characters would react. The author did a fantastic job of world building and character development. I will absolutely be reading the next book and anything else that Doug J Cooper decides to write in the science fiction genre. This was fantastic.

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Book Review: Seed (Keepers of Genesis I)

Author: DB Nielsen
Pages: 432
Published: May 7, 2014
Genre: Fantasy, Historical Fiction, Paranormal
Rating: 3/5

Seed is book one in the Keepers of Genesis series by DB Nielsen. I read this book as our first pick for the Indie Book Club.

Sage and her twin sister have grown up immersed in a world of history. Their father has worked for museums their whole life and his job has taken them around the world. While visiting her dad in the museum, Sage stumbles into her father’s office only to discover that her father and a group of other museum workers hovered around a strange looking artifact on her dad’s desk. After quickly shooing Sage out of his office and then punishing her when he got home from work, Sage decides she has to go back to the museum and find out more about what she saw.

The mysterious St. John Rivers works for her father in the museum and had a pretty strange introduction to Sage where he began reciting Shakespeare to her. Sage and St. John then embark on a journey together through London uncovering secrets to a world Sage never thought possible.

Now to be honest, I had a lot of problems with this novel. The biggest problem was also the best part of the novel which was the amount of historical detail. After about 30% of the novel I began only reading the dialogue and yet still felt as if I wasn’t missing anything.

Another issue I had with the novel was the main plot. It felt incredibly jumbled and a little too radical for me. At one point I realized that I was rolling my eyes every time something new happened because it became too unbelievable. Now I understand that this is a paranormal world and thus things extend beyond the typical range of beliefs, however, this felt like it was reaching.

The writing was excellent and I did enjoy reading about the characters, but a lot of the main plot points kept taking me out of the story and if it weren’t for the book club, I’m not sure that I would have finished the novel. =/

However, even with all that I will continue on with this series because I do want to see where the author will take Sage’s character.

Book Review: The Core (Equilibrium Series I)

Author: Kate Thomas
Pages: 157
Published: February 10, 2015
Genre: Paranormal, New Adult
Rating: 4/5

This was amazing.

The Core is the first installment in the new series from fantastic author, LA Starkey aka Kate Thomas. The Equilibrium Series kicks off by introducing readers to Ellie and her mysterious boss David. After Ellie walks into David’s office and finds him covered in blood, Ellie is convinced she works for a murderer.

Ellie enjoys her job with David, but somehow has no idea what her boss actually does for work. After discovering David in her apartment one night, Ellie begins to think there might be more to her boss than just insanely good looks.

Now I have to admit, this story is again not something I typically go for mostly because it falls into the “new adult” category. However, this. Was. Amazing.

Kate has once again proven that she can create incredibly detailed and layered paranormal worlds that pull the reader in within the first few pages. At first I was really against the idea of David’s character, but by the end of the story I couldn’t get enough. The Core was a fantastic beginning to this series and I absolutely cannot wait for the next installment.

Book Review: Witch in the Woods (Book 1)

Author: Taylor Ann Bunker
Pages: 204
Published: December 11, 2013
Genre: YA, Fantasy, Paranormal
Rating: 4/5

Victor is a witch hunter that has been drafted to Beth’s Hollow to determine who this witch is that has been harassing the townspeople for years. After more and more people reportedly go missing once they enter the woods, Victor takes the task upon himself to bring this witch down. Little did he know that he would begin to develop feelings for those he would meet in the woods or that he would develop a new found respect for his deceased father in the process.

A solid 4/5, Witch in the Woods was a really fun start to another witch trilogy that I can’t wait to continue! A debut novel from this author, you can tell how much she enjoyed writing the characters as the storyline progressed. Victor is one of my favorite characters that I read in 2014. I need to get books 2 and 3 ASAP!

Book Review: Destroyed (Soul Keeper Series #2)

Author: L.A. Starkey
Pages: 437
Published: November 15, 2014
Genre: YA, Fantasy, Paranormal
Rating: 5/5

Book 2 in the Soul Keeper Series was freakin’ fantastic. I can’t say much about the plot because I don’t want to spoil anyone. But book 2 continues the story of Sam as she navigates her relationship with Nick and Marcus.

More mythological elements are added to this novel and the author tied in more detailed storylines beautifully. I enjoyed book 2 more than book 1 and can’t wait for book 3 to come out!

These covers keep getting more and more gorgeous and LA Starkey is just a fantastic person. If you are looking for a fun, quirky, but pretty intense series to pick up then I would highly recommend the Soul Keeper Series.

I cannot say enough good things about these books!

Book Review: The Shadow Rises

Author: K.S. Marsden
Pages: 208
Published: January 7, 2013
Genre: Paranormal, Horror, Witches
Rating: 4/5

Hunter Astley is a seventh generation witch hunter. As far as anyone knows, he’s the only seventh gen in existence. If fifth generation witch hunters have insane powers, what are Hunter’s possibilities?

When the first Shadow Witch in decades appears, it is up to Hunter to track her down and kill her before she can kill anyone else he loves. As part of the Malleus Maleficarum Council (MMC), it is Hunter’s job to keep all witch hunters around the world informed and create a plan of attack. But how is he going to do that when the Shadow Witch continues to slip through his grasp?

This was an awesome start to a witch trilogy by K.S. Marsden. I blew through this book in two days while finishing up finals because I had to know what would happen next to Hunter! I currently have books 2 and 3 and I cannot wait to find out what will happen next. Incredibly strong writing style and very entertaining, The Shadow Rises is a solid start to a witch trilogy that mixes fighting witches (which is all Hunter has ever known) with love in a way that will keep you begging for more. 4/5.

Book Review: The Farm (The Farm #1)

Author: Emily McKay
Pages: 420
Published: December 4, 2012
Genre: YA, Horror, Vampire
Rating: 4/5

The Farm (#1) begins the story of Lily and her twin sister Mel as they navigate life trapped on The Farm. No one is really sure how it got out of control so fast, but somehow a genetically modified animal species has multiplied and taken over. Parents were informed that they could send their teenagers to The Farm which would act as a safe haven until this problem could be contained. Unfortunately that was a ruse to get fresh meat.

Now girls are willingly becoming “breeders” to make their blood less appealing to the Ticks that surround the farm at night. Lily’s story has been different since day one. As a twin she feels a very strong connection to her sister Mel. But even more so since Mel was diagnosed on the Autism Spectrum.

It’s up to Lily to keep her and Mel safe from the Ticks until an old friend shows up. Carter has been missing and now out of nowhere he has injected himself into Lily’s life and has taken control of her escape plans. With his appearance came so many questions and even stranger answers that Lily never expected.

This book was really entertaining and I have book 2 (The Lair) ready to read soon! Book 3 in this trilogy is called The Vault and I will definitely be picking that up as well. I gave this book a 4/5 because I did have some issues with the wording at different points in this novel. At one point Carter mentions to Lily that she “almost got herself raped” which to me is reflective of victim blaming and took me out of the moment. Other than a few parts where something like this occurred, I thought the story was great and definitely a fun new twist on the traditional vampire story.

Book Review: Cloud Riders

Author: Nick Cook
Pages: 338
Published: May 5, 2014
Genre: YA, Fantasy/Sci Fi, Steampunk
Rating: 5/5

After reading the description of this novel I was drawn in. Cloud Riders is book one in the Cloud Rider series and begins the story of Dom. Dom lives with his mom in Tornado Alley and helps out at their family diner. His father disappeared in the last tornado that they had and since then they have had an insane drought.

Finally, a storm appears in the middle of the night. But with it comes something unexpected, an airship. After helping them land their ship, Dom embarks on a crazy journey to uncover his heritage and what happened to his father.

This book was utterly fantastic. I expected to enjoy it, but I didn’t expect to love it as much as I did. The author is amazing and sent me a copy to review and I could not be more grateful. I haven’t read many steampunk type novels and am now completely hooked on Nick Cook’s Cloud Riders series. I am highly anticipating book two and will be following this author for hopefully the rest of his writing career. His world building was one of my favorites of 2014 and I can’t recommend this novel enough to anyone that loves sci/fi or adventure stories. Cloud Riders absolutely deserves the 5/5 that I gave it.

Book Review: Archetype (Archetype #1)

Author: M. D. Waters
Pages: 384
Published: June 24, 2014
Genre: Adult, Science Fiction, Romance
Rating: 5/5

This book was able to bring me out of about a month long reading slump. M. D. Waters writing style is amazing and I knew after the first chapter that this would be the book to fix my slump.

Emma woke up having no idea where she was or who she is. Surrounded by doctors she has been told that her husband is one of her doctors, but then why does she have memories of being with another man?

This is book one in the Archetype duology and I highly recommend that everyone that enjoys science fiction novels pick this one up. There is a huge twist at the end of the novel that I did not see coming and I can’t wait to pick up the second one, Prototype! A well deserved 5/5.

Book Review: Mary: The Summoning (Bloody Mary #1)

Author: Hillary Monahan
Pages: 256
Published: September 2, 2014
Genre: YA, Horror, Paranormal
Rating: 5/5

A brilliantly executed Bloody Mary story, Mary: The Summoning will keep you on your toes from the first page to the last. Jess and her group of friends decide to summon Bloody Mary in typical teenage fashion. But what her friends don’t know is that Jess has been doing research on her own to determine the most successful way to summon Blood Mary.

Now her friend Shauna is being tortured by Mary, and everyone is at a loss for how to stop this. Shauna must uncover the history of Mary to determine why she has come through so strongly and why she latches on to whoever summons her.

This was my second Bloody Mary retelling that I read so far this year and honestly it was my favorite of the two. Hillary Monahan wrote a terrifyingly awesome novel about Bloody Mary that will pull you in from the first chapter and leave you wanting more at the end. The sheer brutality of this story was what I loved the most about it. Right from the start Mary is out of the mirror and ready to make your life hell. An awesome YA horror novel and I absolutely cannot wait until the second one! 5/5