ARC Review: Fortitude Smashed by Taylor Brooke

fortitude smashed by taylor brooke book review blog header

Published: September 21st, 2017 by Interlude Press | Series: Camellia Clock Cycle #1 | Length: 312 pages | Genre: NA romance (with some light sci-fi elements) | Source: Received eARC from author/publisher | Content Warning: depression, panic attacks, dissociation, sexual assault – the book includes an author’s note with content warnings for specific chapters

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Summary from Goodreads:

After scientists stumbled across an anomalous human hormone present during moments of emotional intimacy, further research created the ability to harness the direction of living energy and pinpoint when two lines will merge. Personalized chips are now implanted beneath the thumbnails of every infant, where glowing numbers count down to the moment they will meet their soul mate. 

Fate is now a calculation.

But loving someone isn’t.

When Shannon Wurther, the youngest detective in Southern California, finds himself face-to-face with Aiden Maar, the reckless art thief Shannon’s precinct has been chasing for months, they are both stunned. Their Camellia Clocks have timed out, and the men are left with a choice—love one another or defy fate.

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Blog Tour Review: The Truth About Happily Ever After by Karole Cozzo (+ Giveaway!)


Today is my stop on the blog tour for Karole Cozzo’s new release, The Truth About Happily Ever After. The tour kicks off today, so be sure to keep up with the rest of the posts this week!

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ARC Review: Who She Was by Stormy Smith

Who She Was by Stormy Smith Book Review blog header

Published: May 4th, 2017 by Perfect Storm Publishing (self-published) | Series: N/A | Length: 320 pages | Genre: New adult, romance, contemporary | Source: I received a copy from the author in exchange for an honest review. | Possible Triggers: neglectful/abusive parents, domestic abuse, alcoholism, suicide (none of this happens on the page, but is mentioned)

Amazon (Available with Kindle Unlimited!) | Book Depository | B&N | Goodreads

Summary from Goodreads:

Trevor Adler loathes the music he used to love, but it’s the key to his full-ride scholarship and the ticket away from his dysfunctional parents. To kick off their freshman year, Trevor’s roommate drags him to a frat party, where he ends up face-to-face with his childhood best friend and finds himself entrenched in memories he’d rather forget.

Unable to let Charlie go again without understanding the truth of why she disappeared from his life and chose to become the type of person they always hated, Trevor is relentless in his pursuit of the girl he once knew.

Charlotte (Charlie) Logan is broken. Under her perfectly-crafted exterior are the shards of a shattered heart. A handful of angry words changed her life completely and Charlie’s never been able to forgive herself for the truth she’s hidden from everyone.

While Trevor pushes Charlie to remember the music that lit her soul and the laughter they shared, they find themselves reverting to a banter-filled rhythm that feels all too familiar, yet different now. When Trevor’s own secrets come to light, it becomes clear he and Charlie both must face their tragic pasts if they have any hope at a future together.

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Review of From Gods by Mary Ting

184626431Rating: 4/5

Published: October 7th, 2013, self-published

Length: 380 pages

Source: Received a review copy from Barclay Publicity

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Did you just see a flash of lightning across the sky on a clear sunny day?
Don’t blame Mother Nature.

Skylar Rome can’t wait to spend her last summer before college with her cousin, Kayla. Everything changes when they meet the Grand brothers. Skylar is sure she should stay away from Mason Grand, but their attraction is undeniable. Then Skylar’s life erupts into turmoil. She steps into a world where descendants of ancient gods have super powers, evil beings chase her, and questions arise about her own identity. She is running out of time and running for her life, while trying to unravel the mystery of what they want from her.

Forced into a battle set into motion long before she was born, will Skylar find the answers she seeks, or will she die trying?

I feel like I shouldn’t have liked this book as much as I did, but that doesn’t change the fact that I really, really enjoyed this. It’s definitely not a perfect book, but it was  entertaining and had enough great things about it that I didn’t care very much about the flaws.

Let me talk about the things that I didn’t like first. First of all, I think this definitely could have used a bit more revision. There weren’t many mistakes (meaning there weren’t many grammatical errors), but there were some bits that definitely could have (and should have) been improved. For example, towards the beginning of the book, there’s a part where the same conversation is repeated almost exactly:

“Mason gazed around too, but he mostly stood by the door. ‘Did they take anything?’ he asked. Skylar sniffed and wiped her tears. ‘I don’t know. I’m afraid to go upstairs.’ She turned to Kayla, who was also wiping her tears away. ‘Do you know if they took anything?’ ‘Nothing down here that I can see, but I didn’t go upstairs yet. I’m afraid to.'”

Granted, it is two different people saying that, but it’s very repetitive and I think it could have been changed to make the two conversations more distinct. There was another scene that seemed very “listy” – it came across as “these characters did this, then this, and finally did this.” Not really an error, but definitely something that could have been improved. Luckily though these are the only two sections that really stood out to me as needing improvement, so it’s not as if the whole story is written like that.

That’s all for things that really annoyed me though. There are some things that were kind of in between – they annoyed me a little bit, but I also kind of liked it. For example, Mason is your typical broody male love interest. He’s very hot and cold. He’s nice to Skylar one second, making sure she’s okay and being really sweet to her, and then the next second he’s pushing her away, telling her not to get close to him. I admit I kind of like the “broody love interest” trope so I didn’t mind much, but it did get frustrating at times.

After reading the blurb, it seems like this is your typical fantasy/paranormal story where the protagonist finds out all of a sudden that she’s special and not the boring old human she thought she was. Although this is what happens, trust me when I say it has a little bit of a twist that makes it more unique than you’d expect.

I really liked the incorporation of mythology. I thought it was interesting and was pretty unique, although I would have liked mythology to be a bit more present in the story. It seems that its only real impact on the story was to explain why people had the powers that they had. I don’t know exactly what I would have liked to see with it, but I just wish there had been more of it.

I realize this review ended up sounding pretty negative, but I have to say that I really enjoyed this immensely. I can’t pinpoint exactly what it was about this book that I loved so much. I think I liked this as much as I did simply because it was exactly the kind of book I needed at the moment. It wasn’t perfect yet I had such a hard time putting it down and I genuinely really enjoyed reading it. I will definitely be picking up the other books in the series.

Don’t let my complaints deter you from reading this! It really is a fun book that will have you feeling all kinds of things. You’ll be excited, nervous, happy – you name it. If you like paranormal, fantasy, and/or romance, please give this book a try! It’s included with Kindle Unlimited too, so if you have that you have no excuse not to give it a shot. 🙂

A big thank you to Barclay Publicity for sending me a review copy!

4 stars