Review: The Hunt

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The Hunt by: Stacey Kade

My Rating: 4 of 5 Stars

Ariane Tucker has finally escaped GTX, the research facility that created her. Now that she’s on the run, Zane Bradshaw is the only person she can trust. He knows who-and what-she is and still wants to be part of her life.
But accepting Zane’s help means putting him in danger.

Dr. Jacobs, head of GTX, is not the only one hunting for Ariane. Two rival corporations have their sights set on taking down their competition. Permanently.

To protect Zane and herself, Ariane needs allies. She needs the other hybrids. The hybrids who are way more alien and a lot less human. Can Ariane win them over before they turn on her? Or will she be forced to choose sides, to decide who lives and who dies?

Beware spoilers ahead!

I have always been a fan of Stacey Kade’s books. A few years ago I used to read her first series The Ghost and the Goth and I loved it! I had decided to start reading this series last year and I do not regret that choice!

The book picks up from right where it left off. Ariane and Zane are in a dumpster trying to reach for her father’s emergency bag. Ariane is attempting to reach it but because of her height she can’t. Zane reaches the bag and gives it to Ariane. They go through the bag and find fake passports and a lot of money.

They also find a letter that is meant for Ariane. Zane gives Ariane some privacy to read the letter. As she reads the letter she finds out the information that was revealed to her at the end of the last book. Along with more. According to her father Ariane will have to worry about David Laughlin and Emerson St. John. Both men have taken Alien DNA and Human DNA and created people like Ariane. Both men are also her competitors in the trials. And Laughlin will want her dead if she remains in the USA.

Ariane realizes that she has put Zane in even more danger now that she has Laughlin after her. And possibly St. John. At this point she can’t bring herself to tell Zane so the two set off. They find a truck that was left for Ariane and they leave to find Zane’s mom.

This book actually surprised me! I liked it a little more than I did the first one. The plot was really interesting and there were some big reveals in this book. It was nice that this book wasn’t as info-dumpy as the first one. There was more action in this book! Ariane and Zane immediately set off to accomplish a plan.

I loved reading about the character development in this book! Ariane starts to develop teamwork skills as she’s always worked on her own before. When Ariane meets the new hybrids she finds herself a family. It was really sweet! When Zane meet his mother his whole world is turned upside down. He doesn’t know who she is anymore and whether he really is like her. Throughout the book Zane feels that he is useless to Ariane’s plan. Especially after meeting some of the other hybrids. He wishes that he could help her more than he already does.

The other hybrids were really interesting to read about! I honestly thought that they would be these monstrous hybrids. But I was proven wrong as I read more. While yes they have more of their Alien side they do care about each other. And family is very important to them. Laughlin is even more disgusting than Jacobs! I felt like vomiting when I read a certain scene in the book. St. John makes an appearance in the book but doesn’t really do anything until the last chapter. You literally know nothing about St. John in this book. But he is a main character in the last book.

There are more interactions with Ariane and Zane. More romantic moments. Which was fun to read about! I love reading Kade’s romances because while the characters love each other they’re also best friends. It was nice to read about Ariane actually getting closer to Zane.

After reading three other books from Kade (four including The Rules) her plot does become a bit predictable. I knew who Zane’s mother would be. Considering Zane’s arc it does kind of become obvious what becomes of Zane at the end of this book. It wasn’t annoyingly predictable. Simply predictable. Also this is a light-hearted Sci-Fi series. Kade focuses more on the characters and their development rather than the science behind Project Paper Doll. This is a four star because while I love the plot I just didn’t love this book.

Overall this was a great book! I’m reading the last book right now and it’s so good! I recommend it to fans of the author, and anyone looking for a light-hearted Sci-Fi.

 

Review: Starflight

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Starflight by: Melissa Landers

My Rating: 4 of 5 Stars

Life in the outer realm is a lawless, dirty, hard existence, and Solara Brooks is hungry for it. Just out of the orphanage, she needs a fresh start in a place where nobody cares about the engine grease beneath her fingernails or the felony tattoos across her knuckles. She’s so desperate to reach the realm that she’s willing to indenture herself to Doran Spaulding, the rich and popular quarterback who made her life miserable all through high school, in exchange for passage aboard the spaceliner Zenith.

When a twist of fate lands them instead on the Banshee, a vessel of dubious repute, Doran learns he’s been framed on Earth for conspiracy. As he pursues a set of mysterious coordinates rumored to hold the key to clearing his name, he and Solara must get past their enmity to work together and evade those out for their arrest. Life on the Banshee may be tumultuous, but as Solara and Doran are forced to question everything they once believed about their world—and each other—the ship becomes home, and the eccentric crew family. But what Solara and Doran discover on the mysterious Planet X has the power to not only alter their lives, but the existence of everyone in the universe…

Beware spoilers ahead!

This book was recommended to me by my GR friend Alyssa! I had heard about this book from Netgalley. Around the time Passenger was available for request. At the time I didn’t think much of it. It sounded like some space book that I wouldn’t enjoy. It wasn’t until I read Alyssa’s review that I was sold! I do like reading Sci-Fi books with a large focus on the characters. And I am happy to say that I did enjoy this one!

The book begins with Solara waiting and hoping for someone to choose her as an indenture. The first woman who Solara approaches denies her because Solara is a criminal. In this world criminals have to get tattoos on their knuckles. So that people can identify them as criminals.

Solara has been offered a job position on the Fringe. An Outer Realm that won’t care about her tattoos or the crimes she’s committed. There are no rules in the Fringe. Which is exactly why Solara is desperate to become an indenture. At this point she is the only indenture that it left. Solara sees a girl passing by and offers her services as a maid. The girl ignores her. The girl’s boyfriend says that he’ll definitely be interested in her services.

The girl’s boyfriend turns out to be non-other than Doran Spaulding. The guy who made her high school life absolutely miserable. The two converse for a bit. Then Doran offers Solara to be his indenture. Seeing no other choice she agrees.

During the month Doran has mistreated Solara repeatedly. He sends her on the most ridiclous chores (get his clothes, fetch him water, etc.), and he doesn’t allow her to get a full night’s sleep. Solara does not say anything to him, because angering him means getting dumped off in the middle of nowhere.

That night Doran calls Solara to his room. He asks her to help him with some of his work. As she is starting up the tablet, Doran freezes and stares at her hands. Solara realizes that she forgot to put on her gloves. Doran tries to get her to explain what crime did she commit. But she doesn’t tell him because she doesn’t like to talk about it and it doesn’t really concern him.

Out of nowhere he kicks her out of his room and resumes his work. Solara is shocked by this but decides to brush it off and go to bed. The next day she realizes that there is something definitely wrong. Doran hasn’t called her for his morning snack and so forth. Then she receives an instruction for her to meet Doran outside.

She does so and he informs her that because she wasn’t honest with him he’s kicking her out. Solara explodes because he didn’t have to know about the crime she committed and thus far she had been listening to his every command. She finally tells him everything she’s wanted to tell him. They fight for a bit until it becomes clear to Solara that she’s doomed.

Then an idea strikes her. Solara carried her taser with her just in case of dire emergencies.  Once you taser someone they lose their memory temporarily. If she can taser him she may be able to steal some of his money so that she can pay for her own expenses. The idea doesn’t sit well with Solara but it’s either that or die. Solara pretends to make peace with Doran and tasers him. She makes a dash for the ship to transfer the money. But then realizes that she’ll have to tag him around the entire way.

Doran wakes up with no memory of anything and feels like he’s had a really bad hangover. Solara lies and tells him that he was indentured to her. And that they will need to do some shopping for supplies.

While in the mall Solara buys Doran some medicine and gets her supplies. The mall guards start yelling for Doran and she makes a mad dash for the ships that are set up. She chooses the Banshee and offers to pay them double the price if they could leave right away for the Fringe. The Captain agrees and they are whisked off.

I seriously did not except to like this book this much! I had a basic idea of what was going to happen but man am I impressed. I’m surprised I’ve never heard of this author until December 2015!

I liked how the author created the world. It was interesting and I was happy that it didn’t confuse me as most Sci-Fi’s do. The book switches back and forth between Solara and Daron, all in third person. The writing style is good and I enjoyed reading about Doran and Solara! The plot doesn’t really show itself until much later in the book. The plot was always present it’s just that our characters were kept out of the dark.

The characters are very complex and have a lot of layers to them. The minute you assume you know what they are like the book surprises you. When readers meet the crew of the Banshee there’s more than meets the eye to every character on board.

Solara has been an orphan for as long as she can remember. She’s been told by the Nuns who ran her group home, that because her parents couldn’t afford her they left her in their care. Solara wasn’t the best example of a student. She went to detention quite a bit. But she has  an incredible talent with fixing machines. Thus she went to a private school run by Doran’s father. Solara unlike Doran is more gifted at being a mechanic. Which is what started the feud between them. Solara didn’t get to graduate from the academy because of the crime she committed. She didn’t hurt anyone and she thought that she was doing a greater good by committing the crime.

Doran is extremely rich. His father runs this well known company and Doran works with him. Doran out of pure jealously of Solara started making her life miserable in high school. He lost some of his fathers respect when Solara won an award and Doran didn’t. He does have a past but I’m not going to reveal it because that would spoil the whole book for you.

In the beginning Doran was not at all likable. He was awful and actually thought of himself like a God because of his status and his money. It isn’t until his friends believe that he committed a crime that he starts to become appealing. Doran actually became one of my favourite characters! Solara is likable and hard-working. Circumstances have hit her hard she can’t achieve everything she deserves. Renny is a very nice person but is also a kleptomaniac.  He’s an extremely gifted thief who almost never gets caught. Cassia spends most of her time yelling at Kane, but aside from that she’s a good person and is an excellent healer. Kane is their resent cook. He’s also a major flirt. Kane and Cassia remain mysterious for a majority of the book. Captain Rossi is like a father to all of them. They are one very weird but happy family.

The romance is really slow burn. Which was good considering how Doran treated Solara in the beginning. It was lovely to read about how they gradually became friends and something more! I’d have to say this is one of the most beautiful romances I have ever read.

The book also does have some important themes present. I liked how it focused on the regrets we have and working our way to make it up to the people we care about. Also the importance on acceptance and family was lovely!

I should add that this is light-hearted Sci-Fi. Meaning that there is more focus on the characters and relationships rather than the world. It didn’t bother me at all because I like my Sci-Fi books like that. Also because the plot doesn’t come until later on it’s quite slow. Again I didn’t have a problem with this because I knew that going into the book. As for my rating. While I thoroughly enjoyed this book I didn’t love it. Hence the four star.

Overall this was a great book! I am looking forward to reading the sequel! I recommend it to everyone because there’s something in here that I think everyone will like.

 

Review: Flunked

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Flunked by: Jen Calonita

My Rating: 1 of 5 Stars

Would you send a villain to do a hero’s job? An exciting new twisted fairy tale series from award-winning author Jen Calonita.

Full of regret, Cinderella’s wicked stepmother, Flora, has founded the Fairy Tale Reform School with the mission of turning the wicked and criminally mischievous into upstanding members of Enchantasia.

Impish, sassy 12-year-old Gilly has a history of petty theft and she’s not too sorry about it. When she lifts a hair clip, she gets tossed in reform school-for at least three months. But when she meets fellow students Jax and Kayla, she learns there’s more to this school than its sweet mission. There’s a battle brewing and she starts to wonder: can a villain really change?

Beware spoilers ahead!

DNF

This book was recommended to me by my GR friend Irena! I was really looking forward to reading this book! I loved how the synopsis sounded and I am always on the hunt for a good fairytale retelling. Unfortunately I really did not like this book.

The book begins with an announcement about how Cinderella’s stepmother founded the school and it’s high success rates. You are then taken to Gilly who is going to rob some blonde girls hair pin.

Gilly’s been following the blonde girl and her friends for awhile now. As far as she’s concerned they’re all stupid because they like fashion. Once the girls make their way into a store Gilly sees this as her chance.

Gilly and the girls enter the store. She pretends to be looking at some scarfs so that the owner doesn’t find her suspicious. She then makes her way over to the blonde girl and talks to her for a bit. Then tricks her into leaving her hair pin on the table. The girl forgets all about her hair pin allowing Gilly to steal it without getting caught.

I really did not like the writing style or Gilly! I found the writing style to be very childish. Gilly was annoying and thought that she was all that. She was very rude when judging those girls. Thus I dropped this book.

Overall this was not a good book. I do not recommend it.

Review: Summerlost

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Summerlost by: Ally Condie

My Rating: 2 of 5 Stars

It’s the first real summer since the devastating accident that killed Cedar’s father and younger brother, Ben. But now Cedar and what’s left of her family are returning to the town of Iron Creek for the summer. They’re just settling into their new house when a boy named Leo, dressed in costume, rides by on his bike. Intrigued, Cedar follows him to the renowned Summerlost theatre festival. Soon, she not only has a new friend in Leo and a job working concessions at the festival, she finds herself surrounded by mystery. The mystery of the tragic, too-short life of the Hollywood actress who haunts the halls of Summerlost. And the mystery of the strange gifts that keep appearing for Cedar.

Infused with emotion and rich with understanding, Summerlost is the touching middle grade debut from Ally Condie, the international bestselling author of the Matched series, that highlights the strength of family and personal resilience in the face of tragedy.

Beware spoilers ahead!

I received this E-Sampler via Penguin Young Readers Group and Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.

DNF

I was really excited when I heard that Ally Condie (who wrote the Matched series) would be publishing her first middle grade book! I was even happier when I got an email from Netgalley about the sample. Unfortunately I will not be reading the whole book. Which is why I have marked this book as ‘DNF’.

The book begins with Cedar and her family when they move into their new summer house. Her father and brother passed away last summer and her mother has decided to buy a house close to their family members. Cedar and her other brother Miles are happy about this because they like their Grandparents and Uncle Nick. And they can all talk about Ben and their father together.

While Cedar is sitting on the porch she sees a boy about her age riding a bike dressed in peasant clothes. She finds this odd but the boy rides off before she can even talk to him. Her mother comes and ushers Cedar into the house.

Over the next few days Cedar spends some time with her family. She and Miles play some games. And their family members come to visit. Cedar still sees the boy on the bike passing by. At the end of the sample Cedar decides to follow the boy.

The only reason I won’t be reading the whole book is because of the writing style. The first time I read it the writing style sounded broken and the topic changes were weird. I didn’t understand how this could be because I loved Condie’s writing style in Matched. I read it two more times. While it sounded a bit better the writing style still bothered me. And I cannot bring myself to read the whole book.

However I did enjoy some things. I liked the relationship that Cedar had with her family. When it came to deciding rooms Cedar chose the room with a diamond window because the other room had a window seat and her mother loves window seats. I also liked how Cedar describes that her family is against labeling other people because it hurt Ben. It was really sweet. Unfortunately this was not enough to save the book.

Overall this was not a bad sample, just not well written. However I still recommend it. This sounds like a really sweet story with an emphasis on family and friendship.

Review: The Passenger

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The Passenger  by: Lisa Lutz

My Rating: 1 of 5 Stars

From the author of the New York Times bestselling Spellman Files series, Lisa Lutz’s latest blistering thriller is about a woman who creates and sheds new identities as she crisscrosses the country to escape her past: you’ll want to buckle up for the ride!

In case you were wondering, I didn’t do it. I didn’t have anything to do with Frank’s death. I don’t have an alibi, so you’ll have to take my word for it…

Forty-eight hours after leaving her husband’s body at the base of the stairs, Tanya Dubois cashes in her credit cards, dyes her hair brown, demands a new name from a shadowy voice over the phone, and flees town. It’s not the first time.

She meets Blue, a female bartender who recognizes the hunted look in a fugitive’s eyes and offers her a place to stay. With dwindling choices, Tanya-now-Amelia accepts. An uneasy―and dangerous―alliance is born.

It’s almost impossible to live off the grid today, but Amelia-now-Debra and Blue have the courage, the ingenuity, and the desperation, to try. Hopscotching from city to city, Debra especially is chased by a very dark secret…can she outrun her past?

With heart-stopping escapes and devious deceptions, The Passenger is an amazing psychological thriller about defining yourself while you pursue your path to survival. One thing is certain: the ride will leave you breathless.

Beware spoilers ahead!

I received this E-ARC via Simon & Schuster and Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.

DNF

This book was recommended to me by my blogger friend Kim! When I read Kim’s review for this book I was intrigued. I’m always on the hunt for a good murder mystery and The Passenger sounded interesting. Unfortunately I did not enjoy this.

The book begins with ‘Tanya’ discovering her husband dead. She assumes that he fell from the stairs and banged his head. She tells the readers that she did not murder her husband. She was in the shower when he died.

She decides to dispose of his body. After doing so she goes to meet with a man she had an affair with. They talk and she leaves to start a new life.

I just found this book to be weird. In the beginning it held my attention but once I got to the scene with ‘Tanya’ and the man she was having an affair with I lost interest. You’re told that the reason she ran away is because she is on the run from the government. I guess it was too much to risk calling the police and telling them she was innocent. I’m not exactly sure why I found this weird but I did. And I stopped reading it.

Overall this was an odd book. I cannot bring myself to recommend it.

Review: The Impostor Queen

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The Impostor Queen by: Sarah Fine

My Rating: 4 of 5 stars

Sixteen-year-old Elli was a small child when the Elders of Kupari chose her to succeed the Valtia, the queen who wields infinitely powerful ice and fire magic. Since then, Elli has lived in the temple, surrounded by luxury and tutored by magical priests, as she prepares for the day when the Valtia perishes and the magic finds a new home in her. Elli is destined to be the most powerful Valtia to ever rule.

But when the queen dies defending the kingdom from invading warriors, the magic doesn’t enter Elli. It’s nowhere to be found.

Disgraced, Elli flees to the outlands, the home of banished criminals—some who would love to see the temple burn with all its priests inside. As she finds her footing in this new world, Elli uncovers devastating new information about the Kupari magic, those who wield it, and the prophecy that foretold her destiny. Torn between the love she has for her people and her growing loyalty to the banished, Elli struggles to understand the true role she was meant to play. But as war looms, she must align with the right side—before the kingdom and its magic are completely destroyed.

Beware spoilers ahead!

This book was recommended to me by my GR friend Alyssa! Out of all the anticipated January releases this book (based on the synopsis) sounded the best in my opinion. I had come across this book through Alyssa. When she added it I was instantly drawn by her excitement and the title of the book. By the time I was done reading the synopsis chills went down my back. Of course I added it that day. Then as time went by I realized that I wasn’t excited for it anymore. I thought I lost interest and took it off my shelf. But I still went back to this book. Whenever I saw a giveaway featuring Passenger, Truthwitch, and The Impostor Queen, I would enter in hopes of winning The Impostor Queen. It was then that I realized that I was still interested in this book and bought it. I am happy to say that I thoroughly enjoyed reading it!

The book begins with prologue written in third person. In the point of view of the former Valtia. The Valtia is dying. She didn’t use her powers properly (there has to be a balance of ice and fire) and it has affected her body. She really does not want to die. She still has so much more to do as a Queen. But alas her time has come. Before she dies she sees a little girl with copper hair and pale blue eyes. And she knows what that little girls destiny will be.

We are then taken to Elli who is having a lesson on the human body. You find out that Elli is excited to be the next Valtia. She’s quite passionate about her role. She’s also very curious so she tends to ask a lot of questions.

The next day is the harvest ceremony. During the ceremony the Valtia (the Queen) and her Saadela (Elli) will greet their people. Things have been a bit rough on the Valtia as they are being threatened with the possibility of war. Elli has been looking forward to the ceremony because she gets to see The Valtia and her people.

The ceremony is interrupted by some men claiming they saw enemy war ships. The Valtia leaves to fight them. She promises Elli that she will return for their dinner at night. Elli spends the reminder of the day panicking and pacing back and forth. Her handmaiden Mim comforts her as best as she can. Before their dinner Elli gets word through Mim that the Valtia has returned but this will be her last night.

Elli demands to be taken to the Valtia so she can see her for the last time. The Valtia is a mess. Some parts of her body are on fire while others are frozen. Regardless Elli remains with her until her last moments.

The Elders explain Elli that once the magic enters her body she has to be willing to use it and become a Valtia. Their words don’t sink in at first because she is consumed by her grief for Sophia (the Valtia). After listening to the Elders Elli allows the magic to enter her.

Once the magic has entered her body the Elders make her swear to be a Valtia. She does so and is meet with cheers. Elder Kauko asks her to demonstrate her power by lighting a candle. She concentrates on the task but finds herself unable to do so. Elder Kauko assumes that this is because she has to rest. And that tomorrow she should be able to perform her magic. Elli agrees seeing no other reason.

Elder Kauko tells Elli that apart of having the magic she will experience terrible dreams. Mim has been instructed to stay with Elli and keep an eye on her. Despite what the Elders told her she has no dreams at night.

I honestly did not think this book would be so good! I’m surprised that I have never heard of this author until the end of last year. I loved the world! It was so interesting to read about the ice and fire magic as well as the way Elli has been raised.

Unlike most fantasy books Elli’s destiny was revealed in this book. I assumed that it would buildup over the course of this series. But the author surprised me by revealing it in a first book. And the best part was that it all made sense! It didn’t read like something the author came up with in the last minute. This was a very well planned book.

I loved Elli! She is so unique and unlike a lot of YA heroines. She was so compassionate about being Valtia and helping her people. She learned as much as she could so that she would be a good Valtia. After finding out that she’s not the Valtia her world was turned upside down. She didn’t know who she was and what she is meant to do with her life. But she didn’t let that stop her. When she is rescued by Oskar she decides to learn about survival and doing tasks on her own. With the way Elli was raised she couldn’t even put on her clothes, walk for too long, and etc. She was determined to learn to do all of these things and she did so. It was really impressive.

Oskar was so sweet! I loved his sister and mother. He is also different from most YA heroes. While he did keep secrets he wasn’t rude. He was actually quite sweet. And really happy. I loved reading about his interactions with Elli! His mother and sister were nice when they took Elli in. By the end of the book they consider Elli family. Which was absolutely adorable!

I liked how this book was about finding yourself and choices. It was cool that the author weaved those themes in. The revelation of Elli’s destiny and how it was tied with a few characters was well done! I found that I could relate to all the characters in a way. Especially Elli. I know what it’s like to have your world turned upside down and I simply adored how she handled everything!

When I started reading this book I didn’t like the writing style. As the book progressed I found myself enjoying it and found that I got used to the writing style. While I definitely loved the plot of the series I did not love this book. Hence the rating.

Overall this was a really good book! I recommend it to fantasy fans, the authors fans, and anyone looking to start a unique series.

Review: The Dark Day’s Club

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The Dark Day’s Club  by: Alison Goodman

My Rating: 4 of 5 stars

New York Times bestseller Alison Goodman’s eagerly awaited new project — a Regency adventure starring a stylish and intrepid demon-hunter!

London, April 1812. On the eve of 18-year-old Lady Helen Wrexhall’s presentation to the Queen, one of her family’s housemaids disappears–and Helen is drawn into the shadows of Regency London. There, she meets Lord Carlston, one of the few who can stop the perpetrators: a cabal of demons infiltrating every level of society. Dare she ask for his help, when his reputation is almost as black as his lingering eyes? And will her intelligence and headstrong curiosity wind up leading them into a death trap?

Beware spoilers ahead!

This book was recommended to me by my GR friend Alyssa! I had heard about this author years ago along with her infamous series Eon. Back in November the publishing company released a sample for all the upcoming books. This book was amongst them. At the time I had been hearing so much about this book that I decided to read the sample. It was slow but I fell in love with the setting and Lady Helen. Alyssa’s review convinced me even more so I bought it. I am very happy to say that I thoroughly enjoyed this book!

The book begins with Lady Helen practicing her curtsy for her presentation to the queen. Readers find out that this is a very important presentation especially to Helen. When Helen was 8 years old her mother and her father tried to flee London. They drowned when the ship sunk. After this it was announced that her parents committed treason against the crown.

The consequences were taken out on Helen and her brother. Helen is often compared to her mother and people fear that she is just like her mother. Helen has to act perfect so that people will see that she is nothing like her mother. Helen and her brother live with their Aunt and Uncle. And Helen’s Aunt tries to help her maintain perfection.

Her Aunt arrives with terrible news. One of Helen’s friends Delia, has now been shamed. Delia ran away with a man not intending to marry him. They reached a hotel and the man committed suicide in front of Delia. A witness also claims that before he heard gunfire he saw the start to glow. Helen feels horrible that she did not ask why Delia had been so upset. She partly blames herself for what happens.

That night Helen finds out from her handmaiden Darby that one of the other maids has gone missing. She was running and errand and never returned. But she couldn’t have run away because she belongings are still with them and she has mentioned sending money to her mother. Helen then promises Darby that she will try and look into Berta’s (the maid) disappearance.

Helen asks her older brother Andrew about it and mentions the area where Berta was last seen. He freezes and mentions Lord Carlston. When Helen asks for an explanation Andrew explains that 3 years ago Lord Carlston murdered his wife. There’s no proof but everyone knows he did it. Lord Carlston has returned and Andrew assumes that he must have been the one to kidnap Berta. He warns Helen to stay away from Lord Carlston.

The day of her presentation with the Queen Helen decides to take her mothers miniature with her. She has Darby tie it to her fan. She knows that she shouldn’t do it but she feels that her mother should be there with her. In some way.

Helen and her Aunt run into Lord Carlston. He’s pretty cold but he doesn’t seem the type to kidnap Berta. Lord Carlston takes an odd interest in her fan. After he repeatedly asks her to show it to him she gives in and does so. He returns it back without her mothers miniature. Helen is furious and invites him to her house in hopes of getting the miniature back from him. He agrees.

I honestly did not except this book to be that good! I was so surprised that I enjoyed it that much. I loved the writing style (third person)! It worked really well with the story. There was so much research that went into this that it was completely mind blowing! It was really cool to read about how formal everyone was. Unless they knew each other on a personal level they couldn’t say their first name. Hence why Lord Carlston is constantly referred to as Lord Carlston. I loved how rather than chapter numbers this book had the month, date, and year. Very cool! And it helps if you want to keep track if how long the book takes place.

Unto the characters! I loved Helen! She’s a very unique character. I felt for her whenever she had the battle with herself over what’s right and wrong. Should she trust Carlston when her reputation was already in ruin?  I loved her friendship with Darby! It was sweet how loyal they were to each other.

I loved Helen’s Aunt! She was really fussy but thought of Helen’s best interest and has saved her multiple times from her Uncle’s wraith. Her Uncle views women as incompetent creatures that need to be controlled. He repeatedly tries to force his opinions done Helen’s throat. He also constantly reminds Helen about her mother. I honestly have no idea how Helen’s Aunt has managed with her husband for all these years. Helen and Andrew care for each other but are not close. Most of the time Andrew is out and the two don’t interact a lot.

When I first read about Carlston I felt for him. It must suck to come back home to hostility. What’s odd is that they have no proof that he murdered his wife but everyone believes it. After his first interaction with Helen I did not like him at all. I spent a good while disliking him. Until you find out that he’s not a wholly horrible person.

The world was unique! I haven’t read anything like it. You only touch upon the surface of it with some information here and there. But you don’t fully understand the world. It was interesting to read about the demons and the abilities that Carlston and Helen possess. As well as some information about the demons. Helen’s reaction to the world and her abilities was completely realistic.

You do get to find out about Helen’s mother and why she and her husband tried fleeing London. Unfortunately you are not told what happened the day they drowned. You do not find out what happened to Carlston’s wife and why he has been gone for the past 3 years.

The most interesting aspect about the demon’s was that Helen actually had a choice in joining the Dark Day’s Club. While Carlston’s methods are questionable he didn’t force Helen to join. Not only that but Helen also finds another way to choose whether she wants to join them. That doesn’t usually happen in fantasy so it was interesting to see it play out in this book.

I had only two problems with this. This book is very slow. There isn’t a lot of action instead there’s a larger focus on the characters. This bothered me at first but then I begun to appreciate it. It’s nice to read a book that’s character based. I was pretty upset that Helen didn’t interact with her brother. There were times when I would wonder what exactly her brother did with his spare time and where was he. This stopped bothering me as well. The author is likely to bring Andrew in more in the next book.

I should add that while there wasn’t a lot of romance there is a bit of a love triangle. It’s not annoying but it’s there. Don’t worry it doesn’t take over the plot.

Overall I really enjoyed this book! I am looking forward to the sequel! I recommend it to fans of historical fiction, fantasy, and fans of the author.