Friday, May 27, 2016

Book Review: Insanity - The Mad in Wonderland Series


Her eyes are wide open. Her mouth is knitted into a grin. As if to conceal the truth she was about to speak. She is not the only one.

When a young girl is discovered dead on campus in the University of Oxford, Alice Wonder is called to lead the murder investigation. The girl's mouth has been knitted into a grin, like a Cheshire Cat, with a copy of Lewis Carroll's Alice in Wonderland in one hand.
But the problem isn't with the girl as much as with Alice Wonder herself.

After killing everyone in her class, Alice Wonder has been admitted a patient in the Radcliffe Lunatic Asylum. No one ever doubted her insanity. But now a hookah-smoking professor by the name of Carter Pillar claims he needs her to solve the girl's murder.
What dark secrets is the girl in Oxford hiding?
Together they start decoding Lewis Carroll's paintings, photographs, only to confront a terrible enemy. In order to do so, Alice leads a double life: an Oxford university student by day, a mad girl in an asylum by night. The line between sanity and insanity blurs when she meets Jack Diamond, an arrogant college student who believes that nonsense is an actual science.

My Review

This is the first book in a five book series by Cameron Jace. This book is 247 pages long.

Insanity isn't just being mad... It is an art practiced by many, or at least that is what Jack Diamonds thinks. Alice Wonder murdered an entire busload of her friends and her boyfriend and then she was admitted to an asylum. All of the shock therapies take a toll and she forgets about her family and the reason she is in the asylum. Only after meeting Pillar the Killer does she realize her importance and the fact that countless lives are relying on the real Alice to show up and save them from the Cheshire. There have been countless murders committed by one of the Wonderland monsters, the Cheshire, and he wants revenge for the part humans played in the death of his family and countless other cats. The Cheshire wants his grin back and only with the help of Alice and her allies, can she save the world. She has a hard choice to make and it might just be her imagination playing tricks on her. Is this journey real? Who will Alice choose... The world or her friend?

This was a great book! I love this concept. This is Alice and Wonderland, but with many twists and turns that trap you in the book. I feel like I am actually part of the book. Cameron Jace is a great author and I hope to read more of his books, like Figment book 2 in the Mad in Wonderland Series. There was only mild cussing. The only problem I had with this book was confusion. There are so many twists and questions that in the end you just kind of feel lost. It's kind of like being in a never-ending maze. Some of it was cleared at the end, but then you are left with a bigger question... Is Alice just a mad girl or is she a true Wonderlander?

Tuesday, May 24, 2016

Book Review: Poppy - The Deadly Flower Series


Poppy, a young female Warrior Faery from the Unseelie Court is sent out to retrieve Halflings from the human world to help build her Kings army. A seasoned warrior, she sets out on what should be a routine exercise, but not this mission. Suddenly the portals between worlds are shut down, leaving her trapped in the dreadful human world. Now Poppy must work alongside the despised Halfling to find her way home and avoid being killed by the assassin that is now stalking her. During their journey, Poppy will discover that everything she has been taught has not necessarily been the truth and she will be forced to make decisions that she never dreamed she would be faced with.

My Review

This is the first book in a three book series by Riana Lucas. This book is 156 pages long.

Poppy, a young warrior from the Unseelie Court, has never fit in with the cruel race of the Unseelie Faeries. When the King of the Unseelie Fae gives her a very risky and difficult task, Poppy will learn the hard way that she really doesn't fit in with the other Unseelie Fae. Poppy has to go into the Human World using portals that could possibly be controlled by the Seelie Queen. The Halfling she has to fetch seems to have impressing abilities beyond the other Halflings she has retrieved. Throughout Poppy's journey, she gets new feelings she has never felt and is learning to trust this Halfling, Reed. There is another problem aside from the closing portals, there is a Seelie Fae trying to assassinate Poppy. There is a lot that Poppy doesn't know about her past and her new feelings. She always thought the Fae were superior to humans, but now she isn't so sure. What skeletons are hiding in Poppy's closet? Are these new feelings good or bad?

This was a great book and was definitely close to other Fae books I've read. In all the Fae books I've read, there is always a strong heroine that feels different and two courts that she is having trouble trusting. This book added a new twist to Faeries. Kudos to Riana Lucas for creating a spectacular read. I really wanna read the next book. There isn't really anything wrong with this book either, so win win right? I would consider this a book for most ages.

Sunday, May 22, 2016

Book Review: Cress by Marissa Meyer



In this third book in Marissa Meyer's bestselling Lunar Chronicles series, Cinder and Captain Thorne are fugitives on the run, now with Scarlet and Wolf in tow. Together, they're plotting to overthrow Queen Levana and prevent her army from invading Earth.

Their best hope lies with Cress, a girl trapped on a satellite since childhood who's only ever had her netscreens as company. All that screen time has made Cress an excellent hacker. Unfortunately, she's being forced to work for Queen Levana, and she's just received orders to track down Cinder and her handsome accomplice.

When a daring rescue of Cress goes awry, the group is splintered. Cress finally has her freedom, but it comes at a higher price than she'd ever expected. Meanwhile, Queen Levana will let nothing prevent her marriage to Emperor Kai, especially the cyborg mechanic. Cress, Scarlet, and Cinder may not have signed up to save the world, but they may be the only hope the world has.

Samantha's Review
This is the third book in the Lunar Chronicles series by Marissa Meyer. I read the paperback book which is 552 pages long.
Cress continues the journey of both Cinder and Scarlet. We didn't realize it at the time, but we were actually introduced to Cress back in book one! She's a poor Lunar girl who was born a shell and has spent her entire life in isolation aboard a space ship that looks down on earth.
Cress is an excellent adaptation to Rapunzel.
Cress joins the adventure after being rescued (or at least an attempted rescue) and has to trek across the desert with the help of her dreamy knight in shining armor.
This book series just keeps getting better and better. I'm still mostly team Scarlet and Wolf, but the other love stories are fun too.

Friday, May 20, 2016

Book Review: Gold Dust


Alex Lee is a Freshman at Palo Alto High in the Silicon Valley. With no friends and the most ordinary name ever, not to mention a mother who has somehow turned into a mindless zombie, Alex doesn’t know how things could get worse. But when she comes face to face with a leprechaun on her way home from school, she finds out. Armed only with a clarinet and advice from her Buddha-quoting grandmother, Alex is forced into an adventure that will lead her from a high-tech security breach, through an army of griffins to a point where she could save her mom- if she isn’t torn apart by overwhelming magical forces first.
Marked by humor and insight, this fresh take on the classic Spanish romance of the magical Island of California will keep readers turning pages as they try to find the answer to the question, “What will Alex do next?”

My Review

This is Gold Dust by Catherine Weaver. This book is 240 pages long.

Alex Lee is a social outcast birthed by a Japanese banker and a very imaginative and artistic woman. Alex Lee thought she had no imagination until she meets an old, drunken Irishman. She later will learn that she is part of a plan to save a magical realm from chaos. The chaos caused these earthquakes that started closing the portals to her home. The old, drunk is also a leprechaun and he will teach her to use her strong magical abilities. After she enters the realm of magic, looking for a cure for Herman's imagination sucking magic. Herman is a magical figure stealing magical gold from the magic realm and transporting it, through portals, to are realm. Alex Lee is one of the only people with a mind and with the help of Ian, her red-headed friend who is also on a quest, they might be able to save the world. But, not without a cost. How will Alex Lee save everyone if she has no imagination? Will she be able to save the world in time? What are the costs she has to pay?

I really enjoyed this book and I wasn't expecting some of the things that happened. There were many conflicts and it was kind of hard to keep up. It kind of felt like a T.V. series trying to stuff all these conflicts into one book. Other than that it was very enjoyable. This is a book for many age groups, especially teens and tweens. I would like to thank Catherine Weaver for giving me this book to review. It was an honor and I hope to read more of your books.

Tuesday, May 17, 2016

Book Review: Breaking Fences


More than fences are mended at the Bar B Ranch. 
With bravado as his courage and sarcasm his shield, eighteen year old Cutter Boone is a boy who lives his life on danger's edge. After being sent to his uncle's ranch to avoid incarceration, Cutter carries a chip on his shoulder the size of the state of Texas. 
Seventeen year old barrel racer Melodie Graham is another tortured soul in need of repair. Hiding her secrets as carefully as the pale bruises she hides under her thin cotton shirt, she doesn't intend to let the reckless cowboy into her life, or her heart. 
But when tragedy strikes, Cutter is the one she turns to. Can he save her in time? Or will their bad choices lead to more heartbreak for them both?

My Review

This is Breaking Fences by Susan Burdorf. This book is 185 pages long.

Cutter has everything he can dream of... A girlfriend, a best bud, scholarships, and family... Until a crash leaves Cutter and his mom to take care of his sister, without having a father figures help. Cutter is falling apart and there isn't much time until he graduates. At 18 years of age, he is the man of the house and a lot is expected of him. When he makes a really bad decision and gets caught, all of his hard work could be ruined. His uncle saves the day by giving him a second chance. Cutter has to learn of his mistakes and gets to meet new people along the way. There is also the conflict on and around his uncle's ranch. There is missing cattle and it is getting to be massive losses of property. Also with a fiery girl with secrets at his side. Melodie doesn't want anyone, especially Cutter, to ruin what is left of her life. When her horse, Honey, gets washed away and possibly bit by a rabid animal, all she has left is time. Will Melodie let Cutter into her life and tell him her secrets? Will Cutter realize his mistakes? Is Honey going to survive?

I, personally, don't usually read this particular genre. Realistic fiction isn't really very entertaining for me, but as far as realistic books go, this was a great read! I loved the concept and the conflicts. The book started a bit slow, but quickly progressed. I found myself sitting on the edge of my seat wondering what was going to happen. There was some romantic moments and other moments that left you in a rage. If I were in Melodie's shoes, I would fight back against those who would want to harm her. There was only mild cussing. I would consider this book for all ages(that can read. :) ) 

I would also like to thank Susan Burdorf for letting me review this great book!

Sunday, May 15, 2016

Book Review: Scarlet by Marissa Meyer



Cinder, the cyborg mechanic, returns in the second thrilling installment of Marissa Meyer's bestselling Lunar Chronicles. She's trying to break out of prison--even though if she succeeds, she'll be the Commonwealth's most wanted fugitive.
Halfway around the world, Scarlet Benoit's grandmother is missing. It turns out there are many things Scarlet doesn't know about her grandmother or the grave danger she has lived in her whole life. When Scarlet encounters Wolf, a street fighter who may have information as to her grandmother's whereabouts, she is loath to trust this stranger, but is inexplicably drawn to him, and he to her. As Scarlet and Wolf unravel one mystery, they encounter another when they meet Cinder. Now, all of them must stay one step ahead of the vicious Lunar Queen Levana, who will do anything for the handsome Prince Kai to become her husband, her king, her prisoner.

Samantha's Review
This is the second book in the Lunar Chronicles series by Marissa Meyer. I read the paperback book which is 505 pages long.
Scarlet continues where Cinder left off. We are still following Cinder as she tries to escape prison and save Kai from the evil Lunar Queen. But we are also introduced to a new character named Scarlet.
Scarlet is a play on Red Riding Hood. Her grandmother goes missing, and in her journey to find her she meets a man named Wolf. Wolf agrees to help her in the search, but he is not all that he appears.
Eventually they cross paths with Cinder and join up with her.
It's hard to believe, but I actually found myself in love with Scarlet and Wolf more than Cinder and Kai! There is something just really exciting about their circumstances and the romantic tension between them.
I love where the story is going and can't wait to start the next book in the series!

Friday, May 13, 2016

Book Review: Snowbunny - Chronicles of a Wererabbit


My name is Snow and I am a wererabbit. I was born a bunny and thought my fate was to live and die in a lab until a vampire saved me. Now I am fourteen and I've just rescued a teenage werewolf named Josh from scientists who have been experimenting with a terrible serum which takes away the ability to shift. 
We need to find the people who took him; discover who they are working for and what they are planning so we can stop them. 
The road ahead is scary, full of twists and a new love. But no one ever said becoming a hero was easy... 

My Review

This is the second book in a two book series by M.Y. Zeman and illustrations by Jason Moser. This book is 230 pages long.

After Snow rescues Josh, Edgar and John help Snow get her stuff together to move to a safer building... They move to a prison full of many mysteries and new friends. Josh has been having these horrible nightmares of his time captive with those horrible scientists and the strange shifter serum. Snow is having strange feelings toward Josh and her father is noticing. When the group starts to notice the missing species, mostly werewolves, they start searching for the mysterious captivators. John discovers that his sister is part of the serum plan and she may even be the leader of the whole operation. When they come up with a plan, someone will get hurt...SEVERELY! Who will get hurt? Where is this mysterious serum's origin?

This was a great book! It was definitely an unexpected turn of events. I loved the action and Josh's courageous attitude towards a certain someone... Wink, wink. I love how M.Y. Zeman incorporated historical "accidents" in this book. I hope there is another book soon, because this book ended on a major cliff-hanger. I hope to read the next book soon, when it comes out. There was mild cussing and very little violence. This book is also in first-person point of view. I definitely consider this book for all ages. 

Thursday, May 12, 2016

Book Review: Snowball - Chronicles of a Wererabbit


I wasn't born with a scar on my forehead. I'm not an heir to a distant kingdom. I was born a rabbit. My destiny was simply to die in a laboratory. But becoming a hero doesn't happen overnight and destiny is a funny thing. In one moment the kindness of a stranger- or in my case a vampire - can change everything. 
My name is Snow and I am a wererabbit. 

Snow Everly was born a rabbit and believes that her destiny was to die in a cold laboratory. Then one winter night, a vampire named John breaks in searching for his missing research. When the lab goes up in flames he goes back and rescues her. He names her Snowball and has no idea that she is no ordinary rabbit. John's partner, Edgar tells him that he is now a father but it takes time for John to realize how right he is. When Snow turns three years old, Snow gains the ability to shift into a girl. Why was she created? Who and what are the mysterious figures following her? Follow Snow on her journey as she makes friends with werewolves, a telepathic mouse and searches for answers. Her dream is to one day become a hero and above all else - she wants to be accepted for who she is - a wererabbit. 

My Review

This is the first book in a two book series by M.Y. Zeman and illustrations by Jason Moser. This book is 248 pages long.

Snow is the first of her kind... A wererabbit. One night a vampire named John is in a research lab and it catches on fire. Snow would not have survived that night if John hadn't have saved her. Snow is growing too fast and she might only have a year or so. Edgar, John's partner, has been trying to help take care of Snow. Edgar and John raise Snow to be a strong and confident shifter. Her friend David, another shifter, needs Johns help to be able to shift into a wolf. When David finds a lead on a serum that can help shifters shift easier, he calls Snow. Snow, being the curious bunny that she is, decides to check it out. She doesn't find the serum, though. Instead she finds a injured werewolf, named Josh, and lots of psycho scientists. Where is the serum? Who is the werewolf? Why was Snow created?

I loved this book! I love shifter/paranormal books. I have read many different shifter books, but never about a rabbit shifter. I wasn't expecting most of what came my way. I didn't know that vampires and shifters wouldn't hate each other. This book is for all ages and only has mild cussing. Snow is bullied even though she is beautiful. This book is in first-person point of view, but with different point of views. Edgar and John have some of their feelings in this book, but it is mostly Snow's point of view. I also like the small comic pictures that show up throughout the book.

Monday, May 9, 2016

Book Review: Cinder by Marissa Meyer




Humans and androids crowd the raucous streets of New Beijing. A deadly plague ravages the population. From space, a ruthless lunar people watch, waiting to make their move. No one knows that Earth's fate hinges on one girl. . . .  Cinder, a gifted mechanic, is a cyborg. She's a second-class citizen with a mysterious past, reviled by her stepmother and blamed for her stepsister's illness. But when her life becomes intertwined with the handsome Prince Kai's, she suddenly finds herself at the center of an intergalactic struggle, and a forbidden attraction. Caught between duty and freedom, loyalty and betrayal, she must uncover secrets about her past in order to protect her world's future.


Samantha's Review
This is the first book in the Lunar Chronicles series by Marissa Meyer. I read the hardcover book which is 400 pages long.
Cinder is a take on the fairy tale Cinderella, set in a futuristic world where aliens and cyborgs are a normal thing. A plague has spread over the land and when someone Cinder loves gets it, she is forced into the hands of scientists that would do tests on her to find a cure.
But she makes a few friends and discovers much more about the Lunar people than she thought. She risks her life to save those she cares for and ends up discovering her own hidden secret in the process.
At first I wasn't sure I was going to like this story. I'm more of a fairies and dragons fantasy lover, but I thought I would give it a try. It was written really well and pulled me in pretty quick.
I think the twist of it being based on an old fairy tale was really cool. It's not an exact retelling, which I love. It has it's own twists and turns.
I will definitely be reading the next book.

Thursday, May 5, 2016

Book Review: Trial by Charm - The Trial by Charm Series


Seventeen-year-old Julia Wright doesn’t understand her friends’ obsession with boys. She’s never even had a crush, and proudly maintains her composure no matter who is in her presence. In fact, the hotter a guy is to her friends, the more annoying he seems to Julia. When she is blackmailed into being the manager of the men’s swim team, she finds herself face to face with the worst of them all. Team Captain Vander Thelxinoe is the typical self-assured jock, with a not-so-typical ability to change people’s minds at will. It’s a talent he uses often to get what he wants--only his charms don’t work on Julia. Now he’s anxious to figure out why, and the closer he tries to get, the more desperate she is to stay away–especially when he somehow awakens a side of her she never knew existed. 

Their unexpected friendship puts Julia in the middle of a quest she doesn’t quite understand. As her familiar world begins to unravel around her, Julia must partner with the one person who knows how to push her buttons–and, in doing so, discovers the unbelievable truth about who she really is. 

Can Julia and Vander survive the trial set before them, or will they succumb to a more terrifying fate? 

My Review

This is the first book in the trial by Charm Series by Jolene Buchheit. This book is 227 pages long.

Julia has spent her time, after her father's death, in shock and needing any friend she could have at her side. She has always been singled out by Vander Thelxinoe, even though every girl at school worships at his alter. Julia has never really been interested in dating and she has definitely never had a crush. When she learns of Vander's abilities and weird life, she starts to get a new feeling she's not used to. Vander is on a quest to see his mother again, but there are lots of obstacles and he needs to learn how to use his abilities. To top off the ice cream, she is starting to really have the hotties for the guy she thought she hated the most in life. This quest requires Julia's help, since Vander and her have a special bond that is unexplainable. Will Vander's abilities be revealed? Is Julia really falling for Vander? Will they pass the test together?

I really enjoyed this book. Especially since..... There was never a slow or dull moment! The author just kept me guessing and wanting to skip ahead. To be honest, I skipped ahead a few times, because I literally couldn't wait to see what would happen.  It was great and funny at parts. There was really nothing sad about it except the death of Julia's father. There is only mild cussing and some kissing; heart-felt moments. I would consider this a book for most all ages. :p

Wednesday, May 4, 2016

Book Review: Echo Among Stars - The Echo Among Stars Series


Would you risk everything you thought you knew about yourself if it meant saving everyone you love? 
In this thrilling debut novel, sixteen year old Eden Huntleigh and her family live within the district of Empyrean. Under the rule of The Renegades, and their tyrant leader Cesar, every aspect of life is controlled. Streets are patrolled by humanoid Enforcers. Necessities are rationed. Disobedience is not tolerated. When Eden receives an omen, and joins a group of Rebels led by the alluring Leo Dillon, her life begins to unravel. 

Just as the Rebels are beginning to understand what they are capable of Cesar has kidnapped their families forcing them to strike before they are ready. Once inside the Empyrean palace they discover the horror of what they are truly facing. Does Eden have what it takes to be the legend she was destined to be? Ready or not she's about to find out..

My Review

This is the first book in a two book series by JoAnna Morris. This book is 219 pages long.

For all of Eden's life, the only thing she has seen is her "refuge camp" for the lessers of Empyrean. She has always wore this black stone around her neck, but something changed and it is now glowing. When she sees her brother's best friend out of "bot mode" she starts to get confused. Bots are brainwashed to carry out the orders of Cesar, the ruler of Empyrean, but this bot is in control of his actions. When she receives a letter, everything changes and not all in a bad way. She meets a group of teens known as the "rebels" they have the ancestors on their side and are given special abilities. What Eden doesn't know is she is in for the ride of her life. Will Eden help the rebels win? How is the bot in control again? Why is her necklace glowing?

I loved the concept of this book and how it was kind of in-between the future and the past. The title definitely fits this book, though. I love the characters' personalities. I hope to read the second book, because it was left at a cliff-hanger. Argghhh.... This is me ripping my hair out. I really want to read the next book. For those of you that are going to read this, be sure you have the second book at hand, as well. There was nothing bad in this book and this book is for all ages.

Sunday, May 1, 2016

Book Review: The Girl In Between by Laekan Zea Kemp

Hey everyone! Samantha here!  I'm one of the new bloggers to Belle's Beastly Book Blog!  You will see me posting review from time to time.  Let's get started on my first review!


Bryn Reyes is a real life sleeping beauty. Afflicted with Klein-Levin Syndrome, she suffers episodes of prolonged sleep that steal weeks, and sometimes even months, from her life. But unlike most KLS patients, she doesn’t spend each episode in a catatonic state or wake up with no recollection of the time she’s missed. Instead, Bryn spends half her life in an alternate reality made up of her memories. For Bryn, the past is a place, until one day a boy she’s never met before washes up on the illusory beach of her dreams with no memory of who he is.

But the appearance of this strange boy isn’t the only thing that’s changed. Bryn’s symptoms are worsening, her body weakening as she’s plagued by hallucinations even while awake. Her only hope of finding a cure is to undergo experimental treatment created by a German specialist. But when Dr. Banz reveals that he knows more about her strange symptoms than he originally let on, Bryn learns that the boy in her head might actually be the key to understanding what’s happening to her, and worse, that if she doesn’t find out his identity before it’s too late, they both may not survive.


My Review
This is the first book in the three book The In Between Girl series by Laekan Zea Kemp. This book is 289 pages long.
Bryn is not your typical teenager. Unlike most teenagers, she spends a lot of time in bed sleeping. She has an illness called KLS which means she falls asleep for days, sometimes weeks, at a time. She has missed a lot of her teenage life because of the illness and is struggling just to finish her senior year of high school while dreaming of college.  During one of her episodes, she encounters something odd. There is a boy in her mind who isn't supposed to be there.

I really liked this book. It had me guessing and wanting to skip forward to see what the heck was going on.
The only thing I really didn't like was that it ended with a huge cliffhanger that made me turn the page and wonder where the missing pages were. But it only made me want to get book two more.