Book review: Nemesis by Anna Banks

Book review: Nemesis by Anna Banks

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**I received a free copy of this book from Netgalley in exchange for my honest review**

4 ½ stars

Being an undercover princess on the run from your family can be difficult – but being all those things PLUS being beautiful and having a major secret practically makes you a target for bad things happening.  Sepora is the last known Forger – her body creates and expels spectorium, a priceless liquid that can be made into materials for building, used in creating power, as well as a number of other things that make life run more smoothly.  But she’s tired of Forging for her father, the King of Serubel, who keeps her locked away from everyone so they don’t know she is the source of the precious substance.  And when she threatens to stop Forging for him, he locks her away in the dungeon – but her mother takes pity on her and assists her in escaping, while faking her death.  She doesn’t care where she’s able to run to, as long as it away from her power hungry father.  So she runs…

Being a prince not ready for his time to rule, but forced to be prepared upon his father’s untimely death from a mystery disease that kills with utter swiftness and is making its way through the kingdom of Theoria – hitting both old and young, male and female alike.  For Tarik, the now King of Theoria, his main concern is finding a cure for what is now called the Quiet Plague, and when Sepora ends up captured, sold into his harem, and demands to speak with him – from the moment he meets her realizes she is special in some way.  While he doesn’t realize her to be the presumed dead Princess of Serbel, he also knows that there is something about her – from the way she speaks to him, to the way she treats others.  That is partly due to the fact that Tarik is a Lingot, meaning her can distinguish a truth from a lie, and while Sepora learns how to speak with the intent of truth-telling, Tarik knows that while she is very special, she’s had a hard yet pampered path.  Throughout their trials together, the two begin to feel things for each other – but the fact that Tarik must marry a royal, but will love her is not something Sepora is willing to live with.  And while it’s found out that spectorium is at least a temporary fix for those with the Quiet Plague, never fully trusting Tarik and his intent leads Sepora on an emotional journey – one that could end up leading her right back into danger.  But it’s not a clear matter of right or wrong for Sepora, but rather of what is right for HER – meaning she makes a promise that no one will use her for her Forging powers, unless she deems them worth of such a gift (as she’s been used for it by her father for so long who does not use it for good most of the time).

While I’m not usually into more “historical” pieces (the whole story had a pharaoh mixed with the Middle Ages type feel), I loved everything about who Sepora was and the courage she had to find and make a new life for herself.  She was tough, intelligent, but still full of grace and clever words – enough so to make her way from runaway young lady, to captive, to the King’s harem, to the King’s Advisor’s attendant.  And Tarik, while smart, strong, and handsome, he still knows nothing when it comes to matters of the heart – but he wants to do right by his kingdom and its people, even if that means marrying a women he does not love – when the one he eventually does is in front of his face.  I thought the story was brilliantly written in a split POV between Sepora and Tarik, and their perspectives were important to the entire book.  I know Ms. Banks must have some amazing words up her sleeve to try to outdo the first part of Sepora and Tarik’s story, but I will try to keep my hopes low so she can blow me away once again!

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Book review: The Chosen Knights (Book 2) by Mary Ting

About THE CHOSEN KNIGHTS (The Angel Knights Book 2) A page turning mystery with a supernatural twist that entertains to the last page! ~InD’tale Magazine When teens go missing in Hawaii, a group of demon-hunters—half human and half angel—disguised as … Continue reading

Book review: White Raven (The Raven Series Book 1) by J.L. Weil

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White Raven (The Raven Series Book 1) by J.L. Weil

**I received a free copy of this book from Netgalley in exchange for my honest review**

5 stars

When 17 year old Piper losses her mother to a horrible tragedy, her elusive grandmother, whom she’s never met, requests the summer with her and her little brother TJ on an island off the New England coast.  But when Piper and TJ arrive, they never could have prepared themselves for the huge and elaborate home that their grandmother lives in.  With Piper’s standoffish attitude and feelings for her grandmother, she keeps to herself and tries not to enjoy the lavish lifestyle, still in mourning over the loss of her mother and best-friend.  While in her shell of solitude, Piper wanders around the coastal town and meets Zoe, who is bubbly and outgoing.  She invites Piper to a bonfire, where she proceeds to meet Zoe’s three brothers, Zack – Zoe’s twin brother, Zander – the oldest Hunter sibling, and Zane – dark, brooding, and a complete jerk toward Piper.  But of course Piper feels a strange pull toward Zane and his obnoxious attitude, even though she knows she shouldn’t want to be talk to him…or see him…or dream of him.

When Piper starts feeling like she is being watched and Zane keeps popping in out of nowhere to intervene when she faces anything/one threatening, she begins to look for answers as to why people call her grandmother The White Raven, why Zane keeps calling her Princess, and why he and others have seemingly “invisible” tattoos that she can see, but others can’t…and why everyone keeps referring to her as a “Raven”.  With the on again, off again sparks she feels from Zane, when the eldest Hunter, Zander asks her out, she gladly accepts – he is literally just the tall, dark, and handsome to give her a little fun, but then Zane shows up and puts Piper’s life into a real tail spin.  And when he delivers the news that his father is THE Grim Reaper – that he is the son of death – and Piper is from the long line of powerful reapers known as banshee or a White Raven.  Zane tells her that she has the power to take a soul with one touch.  As her fascination with Zane grows, so does the danger she is in, as well as the information that she finally learns about her heritage – that her grandmother has an enormous amount of power, her mother didn’t want the reaper life for her (which is why she left Raven Hallow when she was pregnant with Piper), and that Piper is now next in line to be THE White Raven, “Queen” of all the reapers.  And not only that, but Piper also finds out that she is betrothed to Zander to unite the two most powerful families…falling for Zane shouldn’t have been a part of the deal.  But with danger waiting around every corner, Zane Hunter’s lips looking more kissable by the minute, and  her impending marriage to the other Hunter brother – Piper’s life is about to get more complicated than she could ever imagine.

Let me start of by saying I. LOVED. THIS. BOOK!!  I thought that Piper’s character was well developed, she knew how to stand on her own two feet, but was still willing to trust and rely on others.  She was strong, funny, and even without knowing it, completely kickass!  Which leads me to Zane…hmm, how to describe him with his hard abs, kissable lips, and dark hair (ha!) – Piper gives us some pretty good imagery throughout as she falls hopelessly in love with him.  I thought that their banter was amazing, and even though their journey is far from over, it’s apparent that they are a team, bound by their souls in an amazing ride of love, life, death and all those things encompass.  Great series so far – can’t wait to see more butt kicking and lip locking for Piper and Zane!

Book Blitz: Soul Symmetry by J.L. Weil

Soul Symmetry
J.L. Weil
(Raven #3)
Publication date: August 2nd 2016
Genres: Paranormal, Young Adult

A BANSHEE.
A DEATH REAPER.
LOVE TRANSCENDING.

War is coming. The veil between the living and the dead no longer exists. Evil is running rampant and the universe’s symmetry balances on my fingertips. No big deal. Of course, nobody knows how or when the hallows will strike, or who among us is a traitor.

Hordes of vengeful spirits are multiplying by the minute, closing in ranks. Zane is poised to strike, but it’s going to take more than his killer instincts, more than swords and shadows to vanquish the hallows back where they belong. Stakes are higher than ever, yet I am determined to protect those I care about—to save the world.

Restoring the veil isn’t as easy as a snap of my fingertips. Nothing worth fighting for ever is. Friendship and loyalties are tested to the limit, sacrifices of unimaginable proportions are made, but in the end, all that matters is whether I succeed or fail.

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Previous books in the series:
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EXCERPT:

“Zane,” I placed my hand on his chest, looking over my shoulder into the woods. The scent of death overpowered my nostrils, making them burn. “You better put on your superhero cape. We’re about to get some unwanted villains.”

He glanced down at me, eyes unfazed. “Piper, how many times do I have to tell you? I’m not the hero.”

My hands clutched his shirt. “You are to me.” Ice coated my insides. Hallows. They were approaching, fast.

The hardness in Zane’s expression softened. “Declan, I hope you’re ready to unleash your inner Chuck Norris.”

Declan cracked his knuckles. “I’m already game. Let’s use these assholes as dartboards.”

“Should I call—” …for backup, but it was too late. They were already here. A strange, almost prickling of anticipation twisted through me as the hallows emerged from the tree lines. Their eyes appeared first, breaking through the darkness like a dozen lanterns. They dipped and glided along the ground, coming straight for us.

I braced myself as the frightening hissing filled the air. The sight was jarring, and I was so glad to have Zane, Declan, and even Crash present.
The four of us were lined up in front of my car, the clearing quickly filling with the cold mist of the departed. “I love when people come back from the dead. Juices my zombie fetish,” Crash said dryly. “You up for this, cupcake?”

I remained in place, trying to control my inner turmoil and ignored Crash.

Zane, on the other hand, didn’t have my self-control. He pointed a finger in Crash’s face. “By God, if you try any funny business, I’ll kill you with my bare hands. And she’s not your cupcake.”

The sucky thing about being in the middle of nowhere…no streetlights. The only light we had was the measly bit of moonlight illuminating through the thick trees, hitting small sections of the clearing. I was going to have to rely heavily on my other senses and instinct.

A strip of darkness filled the center of the glade, and that was where the ghosts came from. Straight down the middle. As they drew closer, so did the scent of decay. It was a noticeable smell I’d never detected before, but as my banshee abilities strengthened, so did my other senses.

“Game on,” Crash said, and stepped out of his body, emerging a wolf. He let a howl, long and high.

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Author Bio:

Award-winning and Bestselling author J.L. Weil writes Teen & New Adult Paranormal Romances about spunky, smart mouth girls who always wind up in dire situations. For every sassy girl, there is an equally mouthwatering, overprotective guy. Of course there is lots of kissing. And stuff.

Most of her books are for ages 16+. They usually have what she considers the good stuff – sexual content (oh yeah) and swearing. You have been warned 😉

An admitted addict to Love Pink clothes, raspberry mochas from Starbucks, (yum!) and Jensen Ackles (double yum!). She loves gushing about books and Supernatural with her readers.

Website / Goodreads / Facebook / Twitter / Wattpad

 

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Cover Reveal: THE BLESSED KNIGHTS (The Angel Knights Book 3) by Mary Ting

Cover Reveal & First Look Celebration for THE BLESSED KNIGHTS (The Angel Knights #3) by Mary Ting!

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About THE BLESSED KNIGHTS (The Angel Knights Book 3)

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Eli, Lucia’s half-demon love interest, has been stabbed with a true-cross dagger and captured by Cyrus, master of the possessor demons.

The Chosen Knights must work together once again not only to save Eli, but also to decipher a clue to find the second missing page of Jacques de Molay’s journal. Meanwhile, Uncle Davin informs Crossroads Divine Elders of the danger ahead and learns there is much more to fear.

Countless children are being taken from all over the world to be turned into demons.

Michael, one of the Divine Elders, has no choice but to intervene. The Chosen Knights track down Mortem, the demon who is the key to finding Cyrus, and learn they must travel deep into the pit of a Hawaiian volcano.

When they astral travel to the past in search of a clue and follow Jacques de Moley to Roselyn Chapel in medieval Scotland, what they find will rewrite history.

Out October 28, 2016

Pre-Order this title at these online retailers:

Amazon US Amazon UK | Amazon AUAmazon CA

 Add THE BLESSED KNIGHTS to your TBR pile on Goodreads!

Teaser of The Angel Knights (Book 1) by Mary Ting: 

“Why, look here, Michael. I caught me another dove.” The Fallen grinned triumphantly. “Won’t the master be proud of me that I’ve killed two more?” His tongue glided across his lips at the same time he caressed my face. I grimaced and jerked my head away. “This one is beautiful. I think I’ll have my way with her and then rip out her heart.” He leaned into me, pressing his face to my hair, and touched my cheek with his. I wanted to throw up.

I shivered, mentally blocking out the vision of his words from my mind. Fear would not take me. I had created my situation and it was up to me to get out of it. Knowing I had backup, my courage grew. The Fallen pierced his dark, devious eyes into mine as if he could reach inside my soul. His brows were thick, nose sharp, and his lips so thin they were hardly there. His ghostly pale skin revealed a long scar running from his temple to his chin on his left cheek.

“Please, let her go. You have me,” I stammered.

“Oh, this one is so brave. What a great combination. Maybe I’ll brainwash her and train her to be on our side.” He hissed at me, showing me all of his abnormally sharp teeth. They appeared as if he’d purposely sharpened them.

My team had gotten closer, but where were Uncle Davin and Zach? Knowing we were outnumbered three to one didn’t give me much hope, but I had to remind myself we were stronger than we thought. Father and Uncle Davin were with us, the greatest demon hunters of their time.

“I’m giving you one last warning,” Father stated with authority.

The Fallen laughed again, mocking Father. “You’re giving me a warning? Let me tell you my name so everyone will remember it when they die. I’m called Mortem…meaning death.” Trailing the dagger down Victoria’s neck, he nicked it. Crimson liquid seeped from the wound, creating a red line down the front of her. “Beautiful. I love this color. I can’t wait to see more of it…on her.” Then, with a wicked grin, he plunged the sword into Victoria’s heart.

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Check out the entire Angel Knights series!

About THE ANGEL KNIGHTS (The Angel Knights Book 1)

Michael and Claudia’s decision to move back to Crossroads was to keep their children safe, but they can’t escape who they are. Their children, Zachary and Lucia, were destined to be demon hunters—Venators. From the age they were able to hold a sword, they were trained to become the best and to ensure they would become leaders one day.

All is peaceful throughout the land until the Fallen and demons’ presences were felt in the between and on Earth. As the Venators investigate these locations, they will quickly learn how dangerous their lives are. Hearts will be broken. Teammates will lose their lives. And they will face obstacles which will test their faith.

As danger grows, the fear of fallen angels and demons regrouping has the Divine Elders on pins and needles. Now, Zachary and Lucia, along with Uncle Davin, must prepare themselves—mentally and physically—to live on Earth to investigate where the focal point of evil resides before it’s too late.

Order this title at these online retailers:

Amazon US Amazon UK 

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About THE CHOSEN KNIGHTS (The Angel Knights Book 2)

A page turning mystery with a supernatural twist that entertains to the last page! ~InD’tale Magazine

When teens go missing in Hawaii, a group of demon-hunters—half human and half angel—disguised as high school students, must leave Crossroads, the place where they reside. In a race against time, they uncover the mystery connecting the missing teens, which dates back to the era of the Knights Templar. However, when they discover one of the Templars passed down a book containing all the secrets and codes to finding a particular treasure, they soon realize this forbidden treasure needs to be found before Cyrus, the lord of the possessor demons, acquires it—a treasure which been safeguarded and hidden from him.

There is only one problem: the pages containing the clues leading to the treasure is missing. When the first page is found, Cyrus threatens to kill more descendants of the Knights Templar if it is not given to him by Friday the thirteenth. In the midst of threats and discovery, the demon-hunting angels find they are not alone when supernatural beings begin to reveal themselves. Can they put their differences aside and work together to solve the Knights Templars’ cipher? As they astral travel to the past, they witness a lot more than they have bargained for. And some things are better left unseen.

Order this title at these online retailers:

Amazon US Amazon UK 

CELEBRATE THE FIRST LOOK WITH A GIVEAWAY!

1 Grand Prize: $20 Giftcard to Amazon

2 Runner-Ups: Digital Edition of Any Backlist Title from M. Clarke or Mary Ting

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Author Bio:

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International Bestselling, Award-Winning, Author Mary Ting/M. Clarke resides in Southern California with her husband and two children. She enjoys oil painting and making jewelry. Writing her first novel, Crossroads Saga, happened by chance. It was a way to grieve the death of her beloved grandmother, and inspired by a dream she once had as a young girl. When she started reading new adult novels, she fell in love with the genre. It was the reason she had to write one-Something Great.
Connect with Mary:

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Review: Head Above Water (Gemini Book 2 : A Black Dog Series) by Hailey Edwards

Head Above Water (Gemini Book 2 : A Black Dog Series) by Hailey Edwards

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**I received a free copy of this book from Netgalley in exchange for my honest review**

5 stars

When Camille Ellis is put on administrative leave from her job at as a Specialist with the Conclave – an agency that polices all things supernatural – she feels like she’s been left as a shell of her former self.  The one that did her job and didn’t get involved in other’s issues or feelings – the one she was before she met Graeson Cord, a warg (wolf shape-shifter) who’s sister was killed in an ongoing case that Camille or Cam for short, has been working on since the killer first started his spree.  Given how deeply she dove into the case, while Cam didn’t feel an instant connection to Graeson, he certainly gravitated toward her as he knew she had more information that she was giving up upon death of his sister.  So when Cam and Graeson (or Cord as she calls him) want to continue the investigation without the Conclave resources (Cam as she wants to find her friend that was taken and Cord so he can seek the blood of the one responsible for his sister’s untimely demise), the only way that Cord’s pack will even consider accepting her is by claiming that she is his mate.

Cam’s gypsy-like family joins her near Cord’s pack, as she doesn’t feel right when she’s away from them for too long.  And while the investigation starts out slowly, with the help of Cam’s cousin Isaac and Cord’s pack-mate Dell, they slowly but surely begin learning just how depraved and twisted Charybdis (the mysterious serial killer) truly is.  Given that and the reception Cord’s pack is giving Cam and her family, it makes every day a fight for the two – whether it’s one for information or belonging, the “mates” have their work cut out for them.  So when something happens that cracks the case wide open for Cam, the only question is does she want Cord and the help he can provide just for the sake of an extra set of helping hands, or does Cam want him around for some seemingly wrong reasons too?

Loved!  The story was fast paced and action packed from the beginning – I couldn’t put the book down as I was always wondering “what’s going to happen next?!?”!  Cam is a kick-butt chick and Cord a moody, yet smart, resourceful, and HOT guy to start, so adding in their families (or pack in Cord’s case) was such a great way to really get inside who they both are even more.  I am literally salivating waiting on the next book (even if it is only a few months out).  Cam and Cord make the ultimate power couple – I just hope they realize that too!

Elementals: The Blood of the Hydra (Book 2) by Michelle Madow

Elementals: The Blood of the Hydra (Book 2) by Michelle Madow

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**I received a free copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for my honest review**

4 ½ stars

The team of Elementals is back and ready for some answers.  With their teacher Darius leading the way, Nicole, Blake, Kate, Chris, and Danielle begin practicing and honing their Elemental skills – and keeping their town safe from monsters that have escaped from Kerberos, the prison the Olympians locked them into after the Second Rebellion.  As tension rise among the team, as do feelings between Nicole and Blake – but they have to keep those feelings hidden so they don’t upset the balance of the team, more specifically, Danielle.  But when they come up with a plan to find out just how the monsters are escaping, catching and questioning one of them, tensions run even higher.

Now that they’ve figured out a temporary fix using the Books of Shadows, the adventure really begins – in Greece and the Aegean Sea.  They must retrieve three things: the seed of the lotus fruit, the milk from the sacred immortal cattle of Helios, and the blood of a slain hydra.  The only problem is that they ALL come with some kind of obstacle – the lotus fruit turns you into a glorified hippie, the immortal cattle don’t produce milk, and the hydra, well, it’s a hydra – with 5 different heads, poisonous breath and bite – not to mention that if you try killing it by beheading it, two more heads grown back in the one’s place.  With nothing more than their magic and the weapons Blake (the fire elemental) created, they set off to create the only thing that could help them get and keep a hold on the escaping monsters until they can figure out how to permanently close the portal to Kerberos forever.  With a few new friends they meet along the way, does the Elemental team have what it takes to complete this frightening mission?

 One thing I love about the first two books so far is that they start with action and it doesn’t seem to stop throughout the entire story.  Nicole and Blake’s crush on each other grows, Kate proves that just because she can “only” control plates, she is a complete bad ass, and we already knew that Danielle and Chris has amazing power and confidence.  This story is very imaginative, while still giving the reader a glimpse into the actual Greek mythology.  I also think that it’s great that the story is super interesting, has a lot of action, but keeps it clean as far as the relationships are concerned.  This series would be perfect for anyone from 6th grade and up – and while an imagination is also necessary, Ms. Madow does a great job of painting a great portrait of her characters and the settings.

Elementals: The Head of Medusa Michelle Madow Cover & Blurb Reveal

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Elementals: The Head of Medusa by Michelle Madow Cover & Blurb Reveal

Filled with magic, thrilling adventure, and sweet romance, Elementals 3: The Head of Medusa is the latest installment in Michelle Madow’s exciting Elementals series. Follow Nicole and her fellow Elementals as they journey to the end of the world, unsure of who to trust, and facing choices that will put their lives and the entire world at risk. Will they all survive the mission? And if they don’t, will the ones who do be able to find the strength to continue?

Title: Elementals 3: The Head of Medusa
Author: Michelle Madow
Genre: Young Adult Fantasy
Release Date: June 29, 2016
Publisher:Dreamscape Publishing
Series: Elementals #3
Format: eBook and paperback

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Synopsis:

THE EPIC JOURNEY CONTINUES IN THE THIRD BOOK OF THE ELEMENTALS SERIES.

Moving to a new town wasn’t supposed to be easy. But for Nicole Cassidy, it meant discovering she was a witch with never before seen elemental powers. Mysteriously given a mission that could help save the world, Nicole and four other gifted classmates journeyed to Greece, where they battled ancient monsters and barely escaped with their lives.

Now Nicole and the Elementals have returned home, and while her relationship with Blake—the fire Elemental—is finally heating up, she can’t rid herself of the guilt that she’s responsible for the death of one of their own in Greece. But she must remain focused, because the portal to the prison world of Kerberos is weakening, and Typhon, one of Earth’s deadliest creatures, has escaped. Now the Elementals must retrieve the only object in the world that can destroy this dangerous monster—the head of Medusa herself.

Follow the Elementals as they journey to the end of the world, unsure of who to trust, and facing choices that will put their lives and the entire world at risk. Will they all survive the mission? And if they don’t, will the ones who do beable to find the strength to continue?

Find out in the riveting third book in the Elementals series, The Head of Medusa.

Pre-order: Amazon

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The adventure began in the first book in the series, Elementals: The Prophecy of Shadows!To learn more about the first book, and to read the first four chapters for free, click here!

The Elementals series is available on Kindle Unlimited, so subscribers can read it for free!

Rafflecopter for Cover & Blurb Giveaway:
Michelle is offering five (5) lucky winners an eCopy of Elementals: The Prophecy of Shadows! To enter, simply fill out the Rafflecopter below:

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About the Author:

Michelle Madow writes fast-paced YA (young adult) fiction that will leave you turning the pages wanting more!

She grew up in Baltimore, and now lives in Boca Raton, Florida, where she writes books for young adults. Some of her favorite things are: reading, pizza, traveling, shopping, time travel, Broadway musicals, and spending time with friends and family. Michelle went on a cross-country road trip from Florida to California and back to promote her books and to encourage high school students to embrace reading and writing. Someday, she hopes to travel the world for a year on a cruise ship.

Want all three parts of the Transcend Time Saga—Michelle’s first YA romance series—for FREE?  Click here to learn about the series and claim your books

To get instant updates about Michelle’s new books, follow her on Amazon!

Connect with Michelle: Website| Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | Goodreads

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Trial by Fire (Going Down in Flames, Book 3) by Chris Cannon

Trial by Fire (Going Down in Flames, Book 3) by Chris Cannon **I received a free copy of this book from Netgalley in exchange for my honest review** 4 ½ stars Red-blue hybrid dragon shifter Bryn McKenna has just started … Continue reading

True North (Undertow Book 3) by K.R. Conway

True North (Undertow Book 3) by K.R. Conway

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**I received a free copy of this book from Netgalley in exchange for my honest review**

4 stars

Eila and her crew of Mortis/ own personal superheros is back and kicking more butt than ever.  With Raef, Kian, MJ, and Ana back by her side, with a few other loyalist added into the mix, they are ready to take their fight to where it could all end or begin – given the weapons that could be created and used against her and her misfit friends.  I really enjoyed leaning more about Eila’s heritage and being shown the risks and rewards that she feels are necessary to restore her once great race to it’s former glory.  With some bumps along her long road to self-discovery, Eila has her ever-present love Raef to help her navigate the twists and turns that are thrown her way.  If you are looking for just another sci-fi story, this might not be for you – this story has so much more!  It has intrigue, betrayal, romance, strange alien races (with strange powers to shock and awe), friendship, and loyalty.  I will be eagerly awaiting the next and final chapter in Eila’s journey!!