Posts Tagged ‘kindle books’

Ghost Girl in the Corner
Ghost Girl in the Corner by Daniel José Older

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

 

Content warnings: lesbian relationship, death, drug mentions

I adored this book. It’s a nice novella to tide you over in between Shadowshaper and Shadowhouse Fall that’s coming out later this year. I haven’t read Bone Street Rumba but I did catch the character that appeared in this novella from that world. I also caught a lot of other references that I’m not going to mention because you’ll just have to read it and catch them yourself (and it’s so worth it trust me).

I adored the fact that this, like Shadowshaper, was a political commentary especially with regards to how police can and do tend to treat brown people when they go missing. Which basically comes down to the fact of if you’re not white they don’t particularly care as much.

The author also did this wonderful interview with himself about this book here which I advise all of you listen to. I definitely advise you read this book AFTER reading Shadowshaper (it’ll make SO MUCH MORE sense).

Buy it here:

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Shadowshaper
Shadowshaper by Daniel José Older

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

 

Content warnings: discussions or depictions of violence, racism, sexism, gentrification, family values, appropriation, family values, heterosexual relationships, lesbian relationships, police brutality, respectability politics, anti-blackness, misogyny, colorism, racial identity, white apathy,  ancestral memory, street harassment, slurs, ableism

This was my first book I read from this author. Like I’ve read the stuff he’s put up on his Wattpad account and follow his Twitter account and read the stuff he puts up on his website as well. So I knew going into this that I already liked his style of writing and I like his voice (both his speaking voice and his writing voice) as well as the things he says. Knowing all that going in, holy crap! I was still blown away by this book. THIS is a good example of what I mean when I say I want diverse books.

Once I started this, I did NOT want to stop reading it. And *HATED* having to put it down to do anything. I read it in once sitting essentially. With interruptions of having to deal with life things (unfortunately food is needed to survive so shopping was necessary). But like initially, the cover was what drew me in. It’s colourful. It’s GORGEOUS. It’s unapologetic. It not only fits the general theme of the book’s main character Sierra (especially her unapologetically being authentically herself which I *LOVED*) and the book itself but it sets the entire mood and theme of the book and helps you to really get into the book IMO. The cover photo was done by Michael Frost and the cover art and design was Christopher Stengel and they deserve so much appreciation and love for what they’ve helped to create for this book. Truly.

Nydia was one of my favourite characters and I want her to get her own library so badly in this series at some point. I loved Tee and Izzy as well. But I adored Nydia and Sierra the most. I also loved that there was no heroine hijacking in this book (where MC girl meets boy and suddenly the story is ALL about their love story and him instead of where it originally was going because that seriously irks me in books and is a huge thing in YA that happens). Sierra’s portrayal and her friendships felt real and authentic to me. Like they were people who I could run into were I to go out with the intention to meet people. I loved that her friends supported her but they weren’t guilted in the “if you don’t support everything I do then we’re not friends” way that some novels do. And that the ones who felt they couldn’t support this part by doing what everyone else was doing weren’t guilted into doing the thing. Yes some tried and it was stated that the characters felt bad that this person couldn’t be there for them to do this but they more or less understood and weren’t going to try and make them. Acknowledging the hurt and accepting it was an important thing to show since a lot of media especially geared at teens and female teens in particular like to focus on ignoring the fact that things like that can and will hurt and that it’s ok to tell a friend that you love and support them but can’t physically be there supporting them for this. We need more healthy depictions of friendships like that.

The acknowledgement of attraction to Robbie but not wanting to be too involved in him was also great. As was the discussion Sierra and Robbie had regarding his tattoos and his not fully knowing his heritage/ancestry.

One of my favourite quotes in the book comes from Sierra looking at herself in the mirror and giving herself her own pep talk.

Today she looked menacingly into the mirror and said: “I’m Sierra María Santiago. I am what I am. Enough.” She sighed. These days were spooky enough without her talking to herself. “More than enough.”

The last line especially. She is definitely more than enough. Everyone is. And I think that’s a quote that will resonate with people, especially teens. At least I hope it will.

I look forward to reading more in this series. It’s a  great first book. There’s background, there’s action, there’s conflict, there’s resolution, there’s a solid ending that is both ambiguous enough to continue but enough to leave you satisfied and happy that it’s an end.

Buy it here:

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El Diablo
El Diablo by M. Robinson

My rating: 1 of 5 stars

 

Content warnings: molestation, attempted rape, emotional abuse, mental abuse, suicide by pills, alcohol use, alcohol abuse, mentions of drug sales and useage, cheating mention, death mentions, heterosexual relationships

I received a free ARC in exchange for a fair and honest review.

I HATED this book. I hate that despite asking the author before via previous reviews (that I know she’s read) that she STILL doesn’t put warnings or didn’t put a warning out about the book. I hate how many people love this book. I hate that it’s 2016 and books that AREN’T historical/regency/etc romances still have men owning women and it being a “joke” that the daughter won’t ever be allowed to date because of the father and his desire to never see HIS babygirl not date.

Like, I literally CAN’T describe how angry I am with this book. So here’s some gifs

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The first 20% ish of this book I enjoyed. The setting up of the childhood and everything that happened that would later affect the story. After that? It all falls to hell. And after this point, if you DON’T want spoilers, don’t read further. (for those that do, highlight from here on out)

So, now that you’re at this point, I presume you want the spoilers so here we go. Some of this is going to be directly copied from a chat I had with a friend about it where I was ranting. I make absolutely no apologies for this.

so first 20% is his childhood
 

we see how fucked up his dad is

 

and his sister and childhood love almost get raped

 

his father makes him kill the guys who did so

 

or were going to

 

his father set it up btw

 

his father also set up the death of his mother

 

causing him and his childhood love to not marry like they were going to

 

she is pregnant by him

for fucks sake, she almost gets raped after getting the shit beat out of her by an ex he saves the day and kills the asshole 
and he takes care of her and once she’s healed she can’t leave his place w/o his guards because even though he’s taken care of the “threat” he has her and everyone else convinced he hasn’t
so she goes back to the american ballet company (ABC as it’s professionally known in the dance community)
and he does this bullshit where her first night she’s healed he brings back a hooker, leaves his door open knowing hers is, fucks the hooker, loudly and intentionally to hurt her
 

constantly pushes her away and then shows her tenderness and then pushes her away again

and he’s of course mafia crime boss
And now, he made sweet love to her then dumped her like yesterday’s trash and is publicly courting another woman to further hurt her
And now he’s threatening to forcefully make her suck his cock
Right now he’s just now telling her that he knew her mother and they were engaged
 

And he literally just told her (direct quote)

 

“Do you know how many times over the years I had to catch myself from calling you Sophia? Stop myself from groaning out her name, instead of yours when we were fucking. All those years you’ve been asking me what carino means. It was always your mother, Lexi. She was my carino.”

 

ok nevermind they aren’t related

 

the asshole who married his sister cheated on her with his former fiancée

but that’s not how it’s presented early on in the book
with his warped ass distortion of things when it came to Sophia and Michael….
oh nope. never mind. He is actually right on this one with Michael and Sophia
“I was there the day he met you. Hiding in the shadows, in the dark. Where I’ve been living all my fucking life. Watching him hold you for the first time. Seeing Sophia’s broken face when he told her he wouldn’t be a part of your life. That you were a mistake, an accident. Your daddy never wanted you. And your mother spent the rest of her life battling her demons every time she looked in your eyes.”
 

How fucking awful do you have to be to say something like that to someone

 

regardless of the truth of it

 

And apparently “the devil” had Michael (the dude that fathered lexi) murdered

 

And his sister (because she happened to be in the car that day)

 

He also killed his father but that was a death worth it

 

And she just shot him and he faked his own death but she doesn’t know that yet

 

And now she knows

And now he’s coming clean to her of all the lies through the years
UGH!
And they happily get married and everything’s great.

WORST BOOK SINCE 50sog. 

As far as I’m concerned this is where this book should go
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If you enjoyed 50 shades of grey, this book will be right up your alley with the ignoring the mental and emotional abuse he puts her through. If you didn’t, I can’t in good conscience recommend this book.
Buy it here:

Cinder Ella
Cinder Ella by S.T. Lynn

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

 

Content warnings: bullying by step family, transgender persons, lesbian relationship

I received a free ARC in exchange for a fair and honest review

As I’ve said before but this bears repeating, *I* personally have nothing against transgender people or same sex relationships BUT, I do know people who DO have issues with them. Which is the ONLY reason I put them in content warnings.

Now, that said. I ADORED THE CRAP out of this story. I want more. I want to read more about Ella and Lizabetta and Ella’s neighbour. Like I really liked that this was a retelling of Cinderella and at the same time it wasn’t. Like it’s good enough to stand on it’s own and be it’s own story away from the classic Cinderella fairy tale that most people know and either love or hate.

Now, a word of warning. If you think this is one of those person gets sex reassigned type stories, it isn’t. As far as the story is concerned with telling us Ella still has all bodily organs that she was born with.

One of my favourite scenes has to do with the ball. In the preparation prior to the ball and Ella going into the bathroom while at the ball to fix her makeup. The princesses sister(?) lady-in-waiting(?) chaperone(?) person close to the princess….meets Ella in the bathroom and Ella does her makeup and in turn she gives Ella this eyeshadow that this tailor gave her that she doesn’t think will ever work for her. And then they escort each other out and meet up again at the buffet table.

Another favourite scene (ok two scenes) is the first one meeting the princess and the meeting at the ball while they’re dancing. And it’s because of the conversation. I’m not big on calling female dogs bitches but that’s my own thing and I understand that it is common nomenclature to do so. So I dealt with it but outside of that minor (and it was very very minor) incident I LOVED the conversations they had. Because I can only imagine how incredibly dull and boring a princesses life can be when everyone is just talking about getting her engaged to x,y,z. And I honestly laughed at that because that’s one of the things I think about anytime I read a “princess” type story. Well typical ones at least.

Also, look at the gorgeous cover! It’s just…WOW.

One of the things that I would have loved to see with this story is explaining the relationship between the princess and the aforementioned person above (whose name escapes me at the moment). And I’d love to read a story with her courting the prince she wants to court.

Another that I would have loved to be told was if Ella naturally had a higher voice or not and if not, if she made her voice higher once she presented as Ella.

Overall though, I’d definitely recommend this book. Especially to trans girls everywhere. Though, I’m sure there are parts where the book messes up. But as a genderfluid person who isn’t a trans girl/female/woman I am not the person to point them out.

Buy it here:

Amazon

Fairy Slippers
Fairy Slippers by Emily Martha Sorensen

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

 

Content warnings: bullying

I received a free ARC in exchange for an honest review.

So, generally, I’ve really enjoyed this series. And to a point I did really enjoy this book. But at the same time I didn’t but that has to do with my own personal experiences with bullying. I do kind of wish a few things were different such as the bullying person actually getting told on and punished but it is what it is. I do hope that the next book shows her getting in trouble for the bullying. But even if not that’s not up to me.

And I can definitely relate to the someone always being in competition with you for *EVERYTHING* thing. It’s truly exhausting and sometimes the competitive person just doesn’t realise it. Doesn’t excuse them being jerks for it but it is what it is.

I can see this book being used as a tool for helping to identify and combating bullying and over competitiveness and truly hope that people use it that way.

All in all, enjoyable book and I look forward to the next.

Buy it here:

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Emely's Destiny
Emely’s Destiny by Ariel Marie

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

 

Content warnings: sex, violence, attempted rape, torture mentions, death, heterosexual relationships

I received a free ARC in exchange for a fair and honest review.

This is the first book I’ve read from this author. And while it was a quick read and a short book, it was a very enjoyable one.

I did have a few issues with this book. One was a general issue I have with vampire books generally. The seeing pale skinned vampires. Pale skinned is so coded as white that it bothers me. I have read books with non white vampires and enjoyed those a bit more than the generic pale skinned vampire books (even though the writing in some of those left A LOT to be desired). So I definitely would like to see a lot more non pale skinned vampires. The other problem I have is a general issue with romance/erotica type books. The whole “you’re so wet for me” thing. I mean yes, sure, some women get wet when turned on. But it’s frustrating seeing that so much in almost every book I read that I want to bash my head in sometimes.

Apart from those two issues though, I *REALLY* enjoyed the book. And would definitely recommend it to others. It also had a few moments that made me laugh which was really great.

Buy it here:

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Dragon's Egg
Dragon’s Egg by Emily Martha Sorensen

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

 

Content warnings: misogynistic views of women and “their places”, heterosexual relationships

I recieved a free ARC in exchange for a fair and honest review.

This is a short story and a pretty good story. I’m a huge nerd/lover of dragons and this story hit a lot of my wishes for a fantasy book about dragons.

The author isn’t kidding that this is a G rated story. Had the expletives been spelled out I’d rate it up to PG. But really, it doesn’t even need that. The only things I’d consider about changing would be to make it a little longer and potentially put book 1 and book 2 together. But I can understand why the author wouldn’t want to do this.

It’s a good new adult story that I look forward to future installments of when they come out.

Buy it here:

Amazon


Love Thyself: “gay fiction, transgender fiction, thriller, child trafficking, LGBTQ drama, and Love Thyself” by Layla Stevens

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Content warnings: sex, paedophilia, prostitution, mentions of miscarriage, cheating, violence, transphobia, hate crimes, suicide, death, talk of medical procedures, childhood abuse by parent, molestation

In addition to the content warnings, there’s trans acceptance by family and doctors and friends. There’s also a bit of medical misinformation in the form of saying that it’s absolutely irreversible to start transitioning and then stopping. I mean yeah, if you’re transitioning there is a good possibility that you won’t be able to reverse certain aspects hormone wise (without going on additional hormones).

This story isn’t perfect. AT ALL. But I had so many emotions from it. I was a little irritated at the whole “pansexual character appears, confesses attraction, and then is forgotten after telling parent about encounter and the fact they’re pansexual”. I mean it’s better than pansexual people not getting any mention but that doesn’t really say much. Pansexual people are also mentioned in the explanation from the doctor about what the letters stand for in LGBTQQIPA (as explained in the story Lesbian/Gay/Bisexual/Transgender/Queer/Quiestining/Intersex/Pansexual/Asexual) (personally, I prefer LGBTQUIA+ – Lesbian/Gay/Bisexual/Transgender & Transexual/Queer & Questioning/Unknown & Uncertain/Intersex & Intergender/Asexual/and the plus standing for all the other gender identities and sexual orientations that you can’t fully put into an acronym and also refuse to acknowledge that an A for ally should be there as allies aren’t marginalized due to gender and/or sexuality orientations).

Ultimately, I loved the acceptance. And the trans family member. And the vindication of getting rid of abusive and toxic people from your life. The particular methods used…eh I wouldn’t advise them but I understand why they were used for the situations in this story.

I would definitely advise people to assess their own mental health and triggers before picking this book/story up.

Buy it here:

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Fairy Pox
Fairy Pox by Emily Martha Sorensen

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

 

I received an ARC in exchange for a fair and honest review.

So this was a semi interesting book. That I could, in some ways, actually relate to. In the sense that I actually have a form of dermatitis so I completely understand the itching thing. It’s annoying. And not something you’d wish for.

Overall I enjoyed how she ultimately absorbed the power and did the thing she needed to do. And I enjoyed that she learned how to actually be a friend. Which some adults still haven’t really learned.

It’s an overall good story and I’d recommend especially if you’ve read the rest of the series.

Buy it here:

Amazon|Google Play|iBooks

Filthy English
Filthy English by Ilsa Madden-Mills

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

 

Content warnings: sex, assault, robbery, mentions of prior deaths, alcohol use, alcohol abuse, heterosexual relationships

I received an ARC in exchange for a fair and honest review.

So, as we all know, I LOVE modern day tellings/re-tellings/inspired by literature classics (which can also depend on what you consider to be classics). I very much enjoyed this. In fact I enjoyed it more than the first book, Dirty English. This one was inspired by Romeo and Juliet. However, even had I not read the first one (and/or enjoyed it), I would have enjoyed this one.

I’m very hit and miss when it comes to this author. Some of her works I really love. Some I really dislike. Some I’m just kind of ‘meh’ about. This one fell more closer to really love.

As to the main character’s ex, I’m not entirely sure he wasn’t b.s.ing her but I’m overall happy with the fact that things turned out the way they did.

One of the things I didn’t fully enjoy was how often it felt it was thrown in your face that “Hey this is inspired by Romeo and Juliet”. It felt a little bit much to me. But your mileage may vary there. I did enjoy that the version of Romeo and Juliet that was watched was Baz Luhrmann’s version, which word for word is the most accurate to the text version.

Overall this was an enjoyable read that I’d recommend to people who enjoy romance books.

Buy it here:

Amazon