Ever Cursed

Damsel meets A Heart in a Body in the World in this incisive and lyrical feminist fairy tale about a princess determined to save her sisters from a curse, even if it means allying herself with the very witch who cast it.

The Princesses of Ever are beloved by the kingdom and their father, the King. They are cherished, admired.

Cursed.

Jane, Alice, Nora, Grace, and Eden carry the burden of being punished for a crime they did not commit, or even know about. They are each cursed to be Without one essential thing—the ability to eat, sleep, love, remember, or hope. And their mother, the Queen, is imprisoned, frozen in time in an unbreakable glass box.

But when Eden’s curse sets in on her thirteenth birthday, the princesses are given the opportunity to break the curse, preventing it from becoming a True Spell and dooming the princesses for life. To do this, they must confront the one who cast the spell—Reagan, a young witch who might not be the villain they thought—as well as the wickedness plaguing their own kingdom…and family.

Told through the eyes of Reagan and Jane—the witch and the bewitched—this insightful twist of a fairy tale explores power in a patriarchal kingdom not unlike our own.

Court of Lions

Two identical girls, one a princess, the other a rebel. Who will rule the empire?

After being swept up into the brutal Vathek court, Amani, the ordinary girl forced to serve as the half-Vathek princess’s body double, has been forced into complete isolation. The cruel but complex princess, Maram, with whom Amani had cultivated a tenuous friendship, discovered Amani’s connection to the rebellion and has forced her into silence, and if Amani crosses Maram once more, her identity – and her betrayal – will be revealed to everyone in the court.

Amani is desperate to continue helping the rebellion, to fight for her people’s freedom. But she must make a devastating decision: will she step aside, and watch her people suffer, or continue to aid them, and put herself and her family in mortal danger? And whatever she chooses, can she bear to remain separated, forever, from Maram’s fiancé, Idris?

The Fell of Dark

The only thing August Pfeiffer hates more than algebra is living in a vampire town. Located at a nexus of mystical energy fields, Fulton Heights is practically an electromagnet for supernatural drama. And when a mysterious (and annoyingly hot) vampire boy arrives with a cryptic warning, Auggie suddenly finds himself at the center of it. An ancient and terrible power is returning to the earthly realm, and somehow Auggie seems to be the only one who can stop it.

S4 E11: An Interview with Swati Teerdhala

This week we’re joined by author, Swati Teerdhala, author of The Tiger at Midnight and The Archer at Dawn. We played a bookish version of Would You Rather…? and our favorite spoiler getting game Never Have I Ever Spoiled My Own Book (we got a little info on book 3). Long live the naked mole-rat! Let’s get started!

A Tale of Highly Unusual Magic

Bestseller and author of the popular middle grade series Confectionately Yours Lisa Papademetriou is back with a magical, page-turning adventure for readers of all ages—a touching tale about destiny and the invisible threads that link us all, ultimately, to one another.

Kai and Leila are both finally having an adventure. For Leila, that means a globe-crossing journey to visit family in Pakistan for the summer; for Kai, it means being stuck with her crazy great-aunt in Texas while her mom looks for a job. In each of their bedrooms, they discover a copy of a blank, old book called The Exquisite Corpse. Kai writes three words on the first page—and suddenly, they magically appear in Leila’s copy on the other side of the planet. Kai’s words are soon followed by line after line of the long-ago, romantic tale of Ralph T. Flabbergast and his forever-love, Edwina Pickle. As the two take turns writing, the tale unfolds, connecting both girls to each other, and to the past, in a way they never could have imagined.

A heartfelt, vividly told multicultural story about fate and how our stories shape it.

The Shadow Hour

A battle has been won. But the war has only just begun.

Everything in Echo’s life changed in a blinding flash when she learned the startling truth: she is the firebird, the creature of light that is said to bring peace.

The firebird has come into the world, but it has not come alone. Every action has an equal and opposite reaction, and Echo can feel a great and terrible darkness rising in the distance. Cosmic forces threaten to tear the world apart.

Echo has already lost her home, her family, and her boyfriend. Now, as the firebird, her path is filled with even greater dangers than the ones she’s already overcome.

She knows the Dragon Prince will not fall without a fight.

Echo must decide: can she wield the power of her true nature—or will it prove too strong for her, and burn what’s left of her world to the ground?

Welcome to the shadow hour.

Truthwitch

In a continent on the edge of war, two witches hold its fate in their hands.

Young witches Safiya and Iseult have a habit of finding trouble. After clashing with a powerful Guildmaster and his ruthless Bloodwitch bodyguard, the friends are forced to flee their home.

Safi must avoid capture at all costs as she’s a rare Truthwitch, able to discern truth from lies. Many would kill for her magic, so Safi must keep it hidden – lest she be used in the struggle between empires. And Iseult’s true powers are hidden even from herself.

In a chance encounter at Court, Safi meets Prince Merik and makes him a reluctant ally. However, his help may not slow down the Bloodwitch now hot on the girls’ heels. All Safi and Iseult want is their freedom, but danger lies ahead. With war coming, treaties breaking and a magical contagion sweeping the land, the friends will have to fight emperors and mercenaries alike. For some will stop at nothing to get their hands on a Truthwitch.

Serpent and Dove

Two years ago, Louise le Blanc fled her coven and took shelter in the city of Cesarine, forsaking all magic and living off whatever she could steal. There, witches like Lou are hunted. They are feared. And they are burned.

Sworn to the Church as a Chasseur, Reid Diggory has lived his life by one principle: thou shalt not suffer a witch to live. His path was never meant to cross with Lou’s, but a wicked stunt forces them into an impossible union—holy matrimony.

The war between witches and Church is an ancient one, and Lou’s most dangerous enemies bring a fate worse than fire. Unable to ignore her growing feelings, yet powerless to change what she is, a choice must be made.

And love makes fools of us all.

The Brilliant Death

For Teodora DiSangro, a mafia don’s daughter, family is fate.

All her life, Teodora has hidden the fact that she secretly turns her family’s enemies into music boxes, mirrors, and other decorative objects. After all, everyone in Vinalia knows that stregas—wielders of magic—are figures out of fairytales. Nobody believes they’re real.

Then the Capo, the land’s new ruler, sends poisoned letters to the heads of the Five Families that have long controlled Vinalia. Four lie dead and Teo’s beloved father is gravely ill. To save him, Teo must travel to the capital as a DiSangro son—not merely disguised as a boy, but transformed into one.

Enter Cielo, a strega who can switch back and forth between male and female as effortlessly as turning a page in a book. Teo and Cielo journey together to the capital, and Teo struggles to master her powers and to keep her growing feelings for Cielo locked in her heart. As she falls in love with witty, irascible Cielo, Teo realizes how much of life she’s missed by hiding her true nature. But she can’t forget her mission, and the closer they get to the palace, the more sinister secrets they uncover about what’s really going on in their beloved country—and the more determined Teo becomes to save her family at any cost.

EXCERPT: The Dark Lord Clementine

Clementine Morcerous awoke one morning to discover that her father had no nose. This was not exactly unexpected. Several mornings previously, the Dark Lord Elithor Morcerous had greeted her with slightly less nose than usual, and a bit of a weaker chin. The difference was so small that Clementine, who was quite small herself, barely noticed it. She did notice something different about him—he was her father, after all—but she thought perhaps he had gotten a rather unflattering haircut.

Truthwitch

In a continent on the edge of war, two witches hold its fate in their hands. Young witches Safiya and Iseult have a habit of finding trouble. After clashing with a powerful Guildmaster and his ruthless Bloodwitch bodyguard, the friends are forced to flee their home. Safi must avoid capture at all costs as she’sContinue reading “Truthwitch”

Bursts of Fire

Bursts of Fire has so much going for it. Magic! Sisters! Political intrigue! But… To survive. To fight. To restore balance. The Falkyn sisters bear a burden and a legacy. Their mother, the imperial magiel of the kingdom of Orumon, protects her people from the horrors of the afterlife by calling upon the Gods withContinue reading “Bursts of Fire”

Here There Are Monsters

Sixteen-year-old Skye is done playing the knight in shining armor for her insufferable younger sister, Deirdre. Moving across the country seems like the perfect chance to start over. In their isolated new neighborhood, Skye manages to fit in, but Deirdre withdraws from everyone, becoming fixated on the swampy woods behind their house and building monstrous sculptures out of sticks and bones. Then Deirdre disappears. And when something awful comes scratching at Skye’s window in the middle of the night, claiming she’s the only one who can save Deirdre, Skye knows she will stop at nothing to bring her sister home.

Freeks

Welcome to Gideon Davorin’s Traveling Sideshow, where necromancy, magical visions, and pyrokinesis are more than just part of the act…

The Brilliant Death ★★★★☆

A stunning, violent fantasy with beautiful writing and amazing queer characters that made me fall in love with them immediately. The Brilliant Death was one of my most anticipated 2018 reads, and it spot on the Favorites shelf is well-earned. For Teodora DiSangro, a mafia don’s daughter, family is fate. All her life, Teodora has hidden the factContinue reading “The Brilliant Death ★★★★☆”

Eon ★★★★★

There are few books that I hold in high enough regard to give them a five star rating. The only other book I’ve ever done that for is Name of the Wind by Patrick Rothfuss. I had a lot of trepidation going into this book, but I came out of it feeling like a kid again; likeContinue reading “Eon ★★★★★”

The Dragon Waking ★★★★☆

An endearing tale of a girl who meets her best friend in the Nevada desert, who just so happens to be a dragon. The Dragon Waking by Grayson Towler is a heartwarming tale of friendship, adventure and a splash of magic. For thirteen-year-old Rose Gallagher, having a friend who is really a dragon and can performContinue reading “The Dragon Waking ★★★★☆”

Heart of Mist ★★★★☆

I was immediately intrigued by Heart of Mist when I saw it online; not only was the cover beautiful but the entire concept grabbed my interest from the get-go. There was a lot to like about Heart of Mist, but a whole lot to get through first… In a realm where toxic mist sweeps the lands and magicContinue reading “Heart of Mist ★★★★☆”

Shimmer and Burn ★★★★☆

Don’t you just love when you pick a book for the cover and the writing is just as beautiful? To save her sister’s life, Faris must smuggle magic into a plague-ridden neighboring kingdom in this exciting and dangerous start to a brand-new fantasy duology. Faris grew up fighting to survive in the slums of BrindaigelContinue reading “Shimmer and Burn ★★★★☆”

The Magician’s Workshop ★★☆☆☆

The Magician’s Workshop started with an interesting concept: magic that can make illusions from one’s own imagination, a girl who wants to make beautiful things but can only make monsters, and a boy who wants to have fun but is an outcast in his own town. But it turned sour pretty quickly. I wanted to like The Magician’sContinue reading “The Magician’s Workshop ★★☆☆☆”

Maresi ★★★☆☆

Maresi by Maria Turtschaninoff is a tale of girls looking out for each other in a world where they’re abused, mistreated and often thought of as less than human. There are plenty of diverse characters, bright young women, and strong role models. Unfortunately, what this book had in great female characters, it lacked in actionContinue reading “Maresi ★★★☆☆”

Freeks ★★★★☆

Magic abilities, a traveling performance troupe and a monstrous secret that could kill everyone sounds like the perfect recipe for a great story. That’s exactly what Amanda Hocking’s Freeks delivers! Welcome to Gideon Davorin’s Traveling Sideshow, where necromancy, magical visions, and pyrokinesis are more than just part of the act… Mara has always longed for aContinue reading “Freeks ★★★★☆”

The Dragon Waking ★★★★☆

An endearing tale of a girl who meets her best friend in the Nevada desert, who just so happens to be a dragon. The Dragon Waking by Grayson Towler is a heartwarming tale of friendship, adventure and a splash of magic. For thirteen-year-old Rose Gallagher, having a friend who is really a dragon and can performContinue reading “The Dragon Waking ★★★★☆”

Truthwitch ★★★★★

Can someone love a book more than I loved Truthwitch by Susan Dennard? Can anyone love anything more than I loved that book? Probably not. I loved Truthwitch (and Susan Dennard. I nearly cried when I saw her in the hallway at BookCon Chigaco) so much. In a continent on the edge of war, two witches hold its fateContinue reading “Truthwitch ★★★★★”

The Shadow Hour ★★★★☆

Sequels are hard; sequels in trilogies are even harder. So many of them suffer through Sagging Middle Syndrome that some people aren’t even able to finish them. I read and reviewed The Girl at Midnight by Melissa Grey last year, and I fell head over heels and finished it in one go. It’s sequel, The Shadow Hour,Continue reading “The Shadow Hour ★★★★☆”

A Tale of Highly Unusual Magic ★★★★★

Magic is my favorite thing in a story. I get to see how it works in the universe and how it affects the characters. Magic in a modern day world, like the one in A Tale of Highly Unusual Magic, where cell phones and blogs make a regular appearance, always intrigues me. How will magic and technologyContinue reading “A Tale of Highly Unusual Magic ★★★★★”

Asteroid Made of Dragons ★★★☆☆

If you gave me the option to read a book with dragons, versus one without, I will pick the dragons over everything else. I love dragons that much. So, of course, being promised an asteroid made of dragons, I was pretty excited. And Asteroid Made of Dragons by G. Derek Adams was pretty exciting–at first.

A Book of Spirits and Thieves ★★★☆☆

 I picked up Morgan Rhodes‘ A Book of Spirits and Thieves on a whim. So far, most books I’ve picked up on a whim have been rather disappointing (I’m looking at you, Tiger’s Curse) but A Book of Spirits and Thieves was surprisingly enthralling and interesting. But the whole time, I felt like there was something missing, and I can’t quite put my fingerContinue reading “A Book of Spirits and Thieves ★★★☆☆”

REVIEW: Wind Catcher Review ★★☆☆☆

I read Wind Catcher by Jeff Altabef and Erynn Altabef for free in exchange for an honest review at netgalley.com Spoilers below the cut! I was very excited to start this book; the main character, Juliet Stone, is Native American and is caught up in a strange series of ievents and learns she has special powers.Continue reading “REVIEW: Wind Catcher Review ★★☆☆☆”

Eon ★★★★★

There are few books that I hold in high enough regard to give them a five star rating. The only other book I’ve ever done that for is Name of the Wind by Patrick Rothfuss. I had a lot of trepidation going into this book, but I came out of it feeling like a kid again; likeContinue reading “Eon ★★★★★”