Tag Archive | #AmReading

In Bookish News! (November 2018)

Hey, dear pagelings!

If I vanished from the face of the earth (or at least from my blogs. *cough*) for the last couple of weeks, it’s because NaNoWriMo has been eating my already extremely busy life. Seriously, I’ve been running non-stop all month. XD

But it’s been good too! (Like, I’m-ahead-on-my-wordcount-AND-FINISHED-WRITING-MY-steampunk-fantasy-NOVEL-THE-SIREN-AND-THE-SKYSHIP-AAAAHH!!! type of good.)

Anyway, today I’m popping in real quick to share the bookish news going on this November — or at least the bookish news I remembered/kept track of. A lot of things are falling through the cracks for me right now so bear with me. *nervous laughter*

NEW RELEASES

(All titles link to Goodreads.)

Here are a few I missed in last month’s post from October:

  • The Enchanted Sonata – Heather Dixon Wallwork — Thanks to reader Mikayla for telling me about this one! AAHH how did I miss it?? :O THE Heather Dixon (now writing under her married name and self-publishing this one!), who wrote Entwined and Illusionarium (both of which I absolutely ADORED), has a new book out! It’s a Nutcracker retelling and looks super cute and I want it. XD
  • Flourish (Green Princess #3) – H.L. Burke — The Green Princess Trilogy is now all released and I still haven’t read the first one! Heidi writes way too fast and we love her for it. Anyway, this one looks awesome and I must read the whole series now. Because two smol floofs fall in luuuurve and I hear there’s plant magic and also lots of feels.
  • The Rose and the Briar – J.M. Stengl — I haven’t read any of the Faraway Castle books yet but they look neat and this Sleeping Beauty retelling just came out. 🙂

NOVEMBER RELEASES

  • Mark of the Raven – Morgan L. Busse — This one came out last week and it’s so shiny and I’m currently reading it and very intrigued! Coincidentally, there’s a shiny readalong with prompts and stuff over on Instagram @fantasyreadalong. (They also just reposted one of my pics for their Ravens prompt and excuse me while I die happy. ❤ )
  • Void Born – RJ Metcalf — I haven’t read the first one yet (Renegade Skyfarer) but I’m DYING TO because steampunnnnk. (I’m in a very steamunky mood because that’s the genre of the novel I just finished writing!) But this sequel just released and it looks awesome! There’s a Facebook party for this one this week on November 16! (Also, RJ is THE NICEST OF HUMANS because she sent me a surprise care package with tea and cough drops and stuff for my cold because I was sick before NaNo. She is the nicest. Thanks, RJ! ❤ )

  • A Royal Masquerade – Allison Tebo — I read this one and it was SO MUCH FUN. It’s a Goose Girl retelling featuring everyone’s favorite Fairy Godfather, Burndee, and antics he and Prince Colin get up to. It’s a riot and I’m reviewing it this week as part of the blog tour so stay tuned!
  • The Mortal Word (Invisible Library) — I’ve only read the first Invisible Library book but obviously need to catch up. But hey, there’s another one releasing — yayy. 😀
  • Rothana – Sarah Delena White — This is the sequel to Halayda which I squealed about muchly and was one of my top 15 reads of last year. AND AAAHH I’M SO NOT EMOTIONALLY PREPARED FOR THIS ONE. Half of me wants to not even read it because I’m SO SCARED FOR MY PRECIOUS CHARACTERS. But half of me also really really needs it, because Taylan and Zad and co. We’ll see. I might get myself a shiny Rothana for Christmas or something. *shifty eyes* ANYWAY it’s coming out in a couple of weeks and there’s a preorder sale and stuffs.
  • Antiheroes – Phoenix Fiction Writers — This is a cool ebook anthology releasing from the Phoenix Fiction authors. I haven’t read all of the stories in it, but I did read the one by Kyle Robert Shultz (called The Wolf at the Door) and it was sooo spooky but also brilliant and involved Little Red Riding Hood. The rest sound cool and I kind of need Nate Philbrick’s at least. >.> (Also, totally subscribe to their newsletter because it’s always funny and so it’s one of those newsletters I always read. XD)

There are probably others but I haven’t been keeping as good track as I should because I’ve been so busy with NaNo and life! But there are quite a few, anyway. 😛

OTHER NOVEMBER NEWS

There’s a big Black Friday sale some authors (Perry Kirkpatrick, Kate Willis, and Victoria Lynn) are putting together — so if you’re a blogger who wants to share the news or an author who wants to get in on it, you can check it out here! (I think signups end tomorrow, November 14?)

And it’s not quiiite November news, but Five Poisoned Apples is releasing on December 1st! :O

MY READING NEWS

Between a roadtrip in October and NaNoWriMo this month, I haven’t had a lot of time for reading . . . Here are the books I read last month, though. (You can always stalk, erm follow my reading progress on Goodreads here.)

  • Read my review for Armor of Aletheia and Blood in the Snow (AAHH MY FAVE!) if you missed them.
  • King’s Warrior and Arbrook Huxley and the Starcrossed Lovers were both re-reads aloud. SO FUN. ❤
  • The False Prince was my roadtrip read and it was SO MUCH FUN. I’m reading the second book now. 🙂
  • A Royal Masquerade review coming in a couple of days but basically READ IT! ❤ (Because Burndee.)
  • And the Kyle Robert Shultz short stories were LOADS of fun and are currently available free on his website here!

We’ll see if I make some time for reading in the next couple of weeks! *fingers crossed*

I also mayyy have gone to a huge sale at a Half Price Books in October, and a library sale in November, so I kind of ran out of bookshelf space and it’s a problem. BUT BOOKS. (I’d share pics but I kind of already ferreted them away on my bookshelves/dresser here, there, and everywhere and would have to go on a scavenger hunt to find all the right ones again and then possibly sell my soul in order to fit them back where they were SO YEAH. *cough*)

And I’ve been having loads of fun posting bookish pics over on my Instagram, so if you’re on there and don’t follow me yet, I do stuff over there even when I don’t find time to blog, so. 😉

That’s what I have for you guys today! Anything you’re excited about? Thanks for reading! 🙂

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5 Thoughts on Armor of Aletheia by Ralene Burke

Title: Armor of Aletheia

Author: Ralene Burke

  • Date read: October 31, 2018
  • Rating: 4 stars
  • Genre: Fantasy / Christian Fantasy
  • Age: YA
  • Year pub: 2018
  • Pages: 268 (ebook)
  • Series: Sacred Armor Trilogy, #1
  • Fave character: Tristan (eventually. ;))
  • Source: The author
  • Notes: I received a free e-ARC of this book from the author. I was not required to write a review, and all opinions are my own.
  • Links: GoodreadsAmazonAuthor’s Website

Such an enjoyable book! It seems like it’s been awhile since I’ve read a really classic-feeling Epic Fantasy quest novel, so this one hit the spot nicely! I love how it felt classic, but also had some new twists that I didn’t see coming. I particularly loved the world in this one! There are elves and dragons and shapeshifters and a griffin and a talking (ish) horse, and scary wolf-like things called lupens. I also loved the wintry feel and the different places, both gorgeous and scary, that the characters visited.

Karina, our heroine, could be a little frustrating at times, but on the whole she was great—and I loved Dom the horse! 😉 I also loved a certain shapeshifter elf (so feisty and cool!), and a guard captain who was awesome. But my favorite—eventually—was Tristan! At first I wasn’t sure about this bounty hunter, but as I suspected, he quickly became pretty awesome. 😉 I won’t give anything away but I’m all here for the character-arcs is all I’m saying. The banter between Tristan and Karina is MY ABSOLUTE FAVORITE. 😀 I love them so much. ^_^ Tristan particularly is rather quotable, and I always love that. (Also, how cool are their names!)

Sometimes it seemed a little rushed or confusing (to me), some of the wording felt a little odd (maybe just me?), and it could maybe have used an extra edit (though I did read an Advance Reader Copy, so I don’t know if it was the final version). But those things didn’t detract from the story too much. 🙂 It took me a little while to get really into it, but by about a quarter through I was loving it. 😀

It was neat reading about this world of three kingdoms (including Aletheia) and following Karina’s quest! Like I said, there were some twists, and even though it had a classic fantasy quest feel, it still felt fresh—and suspenseful! Also, the parts where the Creator guided them and where Karina met basically an angel were cool, and the element from the title—the armor of the Creator, including the belt of Truth and the shield of Faith—is a really neat concept to explore in a fantasy world, and I’m looking forward to where it goes.

Overall, it was a very enjoyable read and I’m so glad I picked it up! Perfect for fans of Christian fantasy. I’m already looking forward very much to the sequel and seeing where Karina and Tristan and their companions end up next! 🙂

~ ~ ~

What do you think? And what’s the latest great fantasy you’ve read?

Thanks for reading! 🙂

Dream away in those pages . . .

~ The Page Dreamer / Deborah O’Carroll

Blood in the Snow by Sarah Pennington: Review/Blog Tour!

Hey, my pagelings!

I’m SO excited today to be taking part in the blog tour for the Seven Magic Mirrors co-release of seven Snow White novellas by six different authors, all releasing this week!

Specifically, I’m reviewing Blood in the Snow by Sarah Pennington, and guys, I’m just SO SO EXCITED. I’ve known Sarah for years and she’s a delightful friend, blogger, and — now I know for absolute sure — a stupendous author! I’ve been waiting for her to have a book out for me to read and review and (hopefully) fangirl over for years and IT IS THIS DAY. I’m absurdly pleased about this. 😀

Also, make sure you drop by here to see all the stops on the blog tour and to enter a fantabulous giveaway for five paperbacks from this collection!

Now, my review . . .


Title: Blood in the Snow

Author: Sarah Pennington

  • Date read: October 24, 2018
  • Rating: 5 stars
  • Genre: Fantasy / Retelling / Snow White / The Goose Girl / Novella / Asian-Inspired Fantasy
  • Age: YA/any
  • Year pub: 2018
  • Pages: 137 (ebook)
  • Fave character: Gan! But also Nianzu, Xiang, Baili, and Chouko.
  • Source: The author
  • Notes: I received a free e-ARC of this book as part of the blog tour. All opinions are my own.

BLOOD IN THE SNOW is a stunning debut from Sarah Pennington, an author I’ve long been watching. I was so excited to read it, and I’m absurdly pleased with the result. This first novella from her did not disappoint! The writing is lyrical yet unobtrusive, pulling one entirely into the story. Every facet of this tale is skillfully crafted together—the writing, the intricate plot, the characters, the themes, and the vibrant setting.

I loved this utterly enchanting retelling of Snow White and The Goose Girl! I never would have thought of the two fairytales together, but they work so incredibly well with each other in this book, I almost feel like this must be their natural state. I don’t want to share spoilers, but all the plot points were spot-on and yet felt organic and original, and a few of them surprising. The many complex threads were woven seamlessly together. Fairytale retellings are my favorite and this one was so well done, which made this reader very happy! ^_^

As much as I loved the retelling part, even the best retelling can fall flat if the characters don’t take off—but these absolutely came to life, and brought the story to life with them!

Baili was a good heroine and I enjoyed seeing her grow through the story and find herself. ^_^ I also really liked the prince character, Xiang! He was great, especially his willingness to help people. 🙂 I absolutely loved the scenes where they interacted. Other favorites were definitely two or three of the “seven dwarves” characters—who were not dwarves at all in this, but animal keepers. I loved meeting them and hearing about their different peoples and backgrounds, and the banter and dialog was so much fun. 😀

Gan was probably my absolute favorite character in the book! He was fantastic, and I also loved his exchanges with fiery goose girl Chouko, another of the seven. Their dynamic was the best. 😀 I wasn’t sure if I’d like Chouko at first, but I really grew to, which surprised me and was awesome! And the quieter, mysterious Nianzu. I’d almost love to read a whole other book about him and Gan and maybe Chouko—they’re that cool. 🙂 The characters were an absolute hit with me!

The worldbuilding was incredible—I could hardly believe so much was packed into this little novella! A whole broad-reaching world of many peoples, cultures, histories, and some surprising deeper themes. The magical bits were interesting too, with the bloodgift element and the Dragonglass, and I particularly loved the use of air and water; now THAT was neat. 🙂 But you’ll have to read it to see what I mean. 😉

I feel like this is a good moment for me to mention that I was reminded of Lloyd Alexander, one of my top three favorite authors, so that’s… well… that’s high praise. This tale just felt GOOD and made me feel at home and I want to hug it. ^_^

Sometimes it was a little difficult for me to keep track of the names (my own fault, I’m sure), and as with most novellas, I wished that it could have been longer (because I want MORE!), yet it made remarkable use of the space there was, so that it didn’t seem rushed, but felt like a complete story. And I always have a hard time reading Goose Girl retellings because ugh, people are so mean to the heroine! It makes me mad (at said characters… which is probably the correct feeling for the reader anyway. :P). But those are small personal things and as close to issues with the story as I can get—it was really fantastic and I loved it!

This novella was a Special Unicorn honorable mention in the final Rooglewood Press fairytale retelling contest, receiving a perfect score, and now that I’ve read it, I can see that there was absolutely a reason for that!

It left me spellbound and with a happy smile as I finished. The story is every bit as gorgeous inside as the breathtaking cover on the outside. I will eagerly await more tales from this author’s pen, and I highly recommend checking this one out!


About Blood in the Snow

Her destiny is decided — but betrayal breaks even the best-laid plans.

Baili, the princess of the Kingdom of Seven Rivers, has always known what her future holds. Declared the fairest of all by the fabled Dragonglass, she is destined to fulfill an ancient prophecy and unite her homeland with its long-time enemy, the Kingdom of Three Peaks. And in doing so, she may save her country from death and ruin.

In order to fulfill her destiny, Baili must travel to the Kingdom of Three Peaks and marry its prince, Liu Xiang. But all Baili’s plans and expectations are turned upside-down when her servants and soldiers, acting on her stepmother’s orders, turn against her on the road. Baili narrowly escapes with her life, but she’s left alone and adrift among strangers.

Fortunately, Baili finds refuge in the home of seven animal keepers: servants and slaves to the emperor of Three Peaks. Yet time is running out. Her servants’ rebellion was only a small part of a much larger plot. Within weeks, her stepmother plans to unite the two kingdoms, not by contract, but by conquest. Baili must reclaim her rightful place and unite not just two kingdoms but many peoples in order to stop the plan. And if she fails, two kingdoms will be plunged into ruin.

Sure to delight lovers of fantasy and fairy tales, this rich and magical Asian-inspired adventure combines Snow White and The Goose Girl in a way you’ve never seen before.


Links


About the Author

Sarah Pennington has been writing stories since before she actually knew how to write, and she has no intention of stopping anytime soon. She is perpetually in the middle of writing at least one or two novels, most of which are in the fantasy and fairy tale retelling genres. Sarah’s first published work, Blood in the Snow, received a perfect score and Special Unicorn status in Rooglewood Press’s Five Poisoned Apples contest. When she isn’t writing, she enjoys knitting, photography, and trying to conquer her massive to-be-read list.

Find her online at: Website || Blog || Second Blog || Goodreads || Facebook || Amazon


Seven Magic Mirrors

What are the Magic Mirrors?

The Magic Mirrors are seven retellings of Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs by six different authors, each unique in tone, setting, and moral. From the light hearted and twisted to dark reimagining to futuristic mashups to non-magical historical fiction, this collection has something in it for every reader.

Again, be sure to drop by to see the whole blog tour, check out the other posts, and enter the giveaway!


Well, what do you think?

Sound like a tale you need in on? Because it is! And how about that INCREDIBLE cover by Anne Elisabeth Stengl? *collapses because it’s so gorgeous* I hope you’ll check out Sarah Pennington’s stunning debut, and that you’re looking forward to the other Magic Mirrors books as much as I am! 🙂 Thanks for reading!

October Bookish News & Afterverse Relaunch!

Greetings, fellow page dreamers!

I’ve gone kind of radio silent because I was on vacation… but it’s time for another edition of what’s up In Bookish News, in October this time.

This month we’ve got the relaunch of the Afterverse, the release of SEVEN Snow White novellas, a batch of other new book releases, some hashtag and bookclub fun, and a giveaway, so there’s lots to cover!

Afterverse Relaunch!

Firstly, Kyle Robert Shultz is doing a Soft Relaunch on October 31 of his Afterverse series!

Essentially, this means that they’re coming to Kindle Unlimited, that there will be new short stories for his newsletter subscribers (go sign up on the side of his blog!), and that there has been some cover-tweaking and some story polishing.

Now, before you freak out, don’t worry — the changes are minor. The covers are just shined up a little, and the first three books (The Beast of Talesend, The Tomb of the Sea Witch, and The Stroke of Eleven) have undergone an extra round of edits to comb out typos and inconsistencies, and to clarify a few things, so there may be a few additional details.

But the stories as you know and love them (if you’ve read them already) are still essentially the same, so you don’t need to read the new versions! (Unless you want to.) And this is just a chance for you to celebrate the awesomeness that is Beaumont and Beasley, and new free short stories, yay!

And if you haven’t read the books yet, now is the absolute perfect time to jump on the Afterverse reading bandwagon with these shiny new editions!

(Small disclaimer: I’m Kyle’s editor. So I… er… may have been the editor involved with polishing the new editions. It was an absolute delight to shine up these hilarious and brilliant stories. ❤ I should put it on my invisible Badge of Credentials: Editor of the Afterverse.)

You can read all the details on Kyle’s site! Or, specifically, in two posts so far, HERE and HERE. And all of these updates should go into effect October 31st. 🙂

If you’re a little confused about the order of the books… here, allow me to make you a list. (And yes, this may be an excuse to throw around the shiny covers for a whole bunch of stories I love. I have no regrets.)

Beaumont and Beasley Books

  1. The Beast of Talesend
  2. The Tomb of the Sea Witch
  3. The Stroke of Eleven
  4. The Return of Beaumont and Beasley (containing novellas The Janus Elixir [about Malcolm Blackfire!] and The Hound of Duville [about Nick and Crispin] which were previously published separately)

Beaumont and Beasley Short Stories

  1. The Last Days of Lady Cordelia (deals with some events from Book 1, The Beast of Talesend) — Amazon
  2. Christmas in Talesend (takes place after Book 3, The Stroke of Eleven) — Amazon
  3. A Spoonful of Aether (Beaumont and Beasley) — Newsletter freebie

Blackfire

Blackfire hasn’t officially launched with a novel yet. This is a Regency Fantasy setting of the Afterverse, featuring dragon/archaeologist Malcolm Blackfire and reformed jewel-thief Melody Nightingale. There aren’t any full-length books out about them yet. (Malcolm appears in many of the Beaumont and Beasley tales, and he and Melody feature together in The Stroke of Eleven.)

The tales that are exclusively about Malcolm and Melody so far are:

  1. The Haunted Hoard (short story) — Newsletter freebie
  2. The Janus Elixir (novella) — One of the two novellas collected in The Return of Beaumont and Beasley (Book 4), on Amazon

Crockett and Crane

Spinoff in magical wild west. Can stand alone. (Book 2 was released on Wattpad originally but will be published sometime on Amazon.)

Novels

  1. Horseman

Crockett and Crane Short Stories

  1. The Centaur Express (Crockett and Crane) — Newsletter freebie
  2. Ravenous (Crockett and Crane) — a free short story as an intro to Kyle’s Patreon page

OKAY. Moving on from the Afterverse, to . . . Snow White!

Seven Magic Mirrors

The Seven Magic Mirrors co-release is happening THIS WEEK and next! Seven Snow White retellings by six different authors are publishing the last several days of the month, run by Kendra E. Ardnek. I’ll be reviewing one by our very own Sarah Pennington — I’m SO excited! *flails around* Anyway, they’re all gorgeous and sound AMAZING so check them out!

Other Book Releases

(The first couple were actually the end of September, but who’s counting. :P)

  • Punctuation 101 – Jill Williamson — This is SUCH a handy, adorable little book for writers! I highly recommend it! I had the chance to volunteer as a proofreader for it and I love it so much. (Why yes, I am the kind of person who proofreads punctuation books for fun… *cough* This is probably why I’m an editor.)
  • Fallow (Green Princess, #2) – H.L. Burke — Look who’s doing it again — releasing books way too fast! XD I’m so excited to read the FIRST book so I can get to this one someday… 😀
  • Paws, Claws, and Magic Tales – Fellowship of Fantasy authors — Eep, another FoF anthology! It’s FREE so you should definitely pick up a copy of these magical cat tales. I can’t wait to read it. ^_^
  • Ogre Enchanted – Gail Carson Levine — It’s a prequel to Ella Enchanted! :O Excited for this one!
  • The Profile Match – Jill Williamson — The final Spencer (Mission League) book is out and I’m so excited for Jill finishing this six-book series! 😀 I’m kinda behind on it but am looking forward to catching up. ^_^
  • Mardan’s Heir – Kathrese McKee — This is the sequel to Mardan’s Heir, and they’re both on my TBR. It looks so cool!
  • A Wind from the Wilderness – Suzannah Rowntree (Oct 29) — This prolific author is always coming out with new tales and this one looks gorgeous!
  • Ewan Pendle and the Castle of Nightmares – Shaun Hume (Oct 31) — Some may remember my review of the first book, a charming British fantasy adventure with fantastical creatures. I’m really excited for this one! 🙂

Other Events

A little late in the month for some of these, but there’s always time to jump on board!

Drachtober / Spooky Story Challenge

Jenelle Schmidt is running #Drachtober and the Spooky Story Challenge again (I posted one of my own!), so drop by and check those out!

Bookclub News

The Fellowship of Fantasy bookclub is reading Masque, a funny Beauty and the Beast story I ADORED — and we’re meeting the author, W. R. Gingell, at the bookclub’s Facebook party this week on Oct 26!

Also, speaking of bookclubs, Jill Williamson and Gillian Bronte Adams have started an awesome new bookclub called @fantasyreadalong on Instagram (and elsewhere? I think they said it moves around) and the first readalong will be in NOVEMBER, for Mark of the Raven by Morgan Busse — I’m so excited!

Giveaway

You can also drop by my other blog to enter a giveaway for No Plot, No Problem by Chris Baty, running through October 28! 😉


I think that’s all I have for you. I do have some books I should review soonish, and we’re coming up on NaNoWriMo so I’ll probably have a mix of posts and too-busy-writing-to-blog, so we’ll see!

Whew! So much happening this month! What book(s) are you most excited about? Thanks for reading! 🙂

In Bookish News: September 2018

Hi everyone!

It’s time for bookish news, including fantasy-character-book-awards happening right now, September book releases, and bookishness I’ve been up to (a.k.a. what I’ve been reading and August’s book haul and possibly a nightstand).

SEPTEMBER RELEASES

There were a lot of books in August, but fewer this month. (…Most likely because most of them are coming out in October. O_O) But here are a few I’m excited about! 🙂

  • Armor of Aletheia by Ralene Burke (technically this was the end of August, but hey) — This sounds like an awesome fantasy story — and by a fellow Realmie, too! I’m always up for an outcast princess and a bounty hunter hero sent after her… 😀 I’m excited to read it. 🙂 And I love the purple!
  • Kate’s Conundrum by Sarah Holman (September 1) — Wait, didn’t a Kate book just come out a few months ago, you ask? Yes it did, but there’s another one already, I’m SO STOKED about this story! I love the Kate’s Case Files books. 😀 (Plus, the cover makes me happy.)
  • Magnolia Summer by Melanie Dickerson (September 5) — This just came out yesterday and it’s a Zorro-esque historical romance set in Alabama! I’m so curious about it and it’s GORGEOUS! (Plus, it’s Melanie’s first self-published book, and the very first book she wrote, so that’s cool.)
  • I also hear a rumor of the second book in the Green Princess trilogy by H.L. Burke possibly releasing this month… Because she’s a writing machine. 😉 Which reminds me that I’m excited to read the FIRST book in that series… ahem. 😛

The Silmaril Awards

The Silmaril Awards are back!

You can learn more about them here at the shiny new official website, but basically it’s a fan-voted just-for-fun award to choose the best characters from fantasy literature, in different categories.

Nominations are happening right now! so you can check out the list of categories to nominate HERE! And you can drop by my own post, where I’m hosting the Wisest Counselor (a.k.a. best mentor-type characters) award — and leave a comment nominating your favorite wise fantasy characters! 🙂

Nominations are only open a couple more days (September 7 is the last day) before moving on to the voting round, so make sure you get in your nominees and second those already nominated!


August Book Haul

I wasn’t going to get many books after my Realm Makers book escapades, but a Bryan Davis sale happened, and I won a couple books (the top two — thanks to the author), and I last-minute suddenly went to a library sale (because absurdly-cheap-books — yay!) sooo I got a few. *nervous laughter*


August Reads

As always, you can find links to these HERE on Goodreads.

This was The Month of the Re-Read, apparently. I re-read many things.

Re-reads

  • Cart and Cwidder + Drowned Ammet by Diana Wynne Jones — It was so much fun re-reading these. 🙂 Which reminds me, I need to pop over to the DWJ Goodreads group and squeal about these, since the Dalemark Quartet is our summer bookclub read… Can’t wait to read the next two!
  • Magician’s Ward – Patricia C. Wrede — I finally read the first in the series, so of course I had to re-read this one, and Mairelon is still AWESOME. I love Regency Fantasy. 😀
  • Right Ho, Jeeves – P. G. Wodehouse — I’ve been audiobooking this one for awhile, listening in snatches while on walks or doing mindless chores like laundry, because my new phone means I can LISTEN TO THINGS and I’m so happy. Anyway, this was delightful and hilarious as always, and Jeeves and Bertie are CLASSIC. 😀

New Small Reads

  • Windswept – Sarah Delenah White — SO MUCH ADORBZ. AND FEELZ. And I loved it. (It’s by the author of Halayda. Of course I loved it.)
  • Initiation – Grace Bridges — I read this in a handy pamphlet given to me by the author when I had a mentor appointment with her at Realm Makers. It was an intriguing short story and made me curious about her Earthcore series, featuring New Zealand superheroes. 🙂
  • East of the Sun and West of the Moon — This was a random picture book I read. Because I’ve been meaning to brush up on this fairytale. It mayyy or may not be squeezing its way into one of my WIPs? We shall see.

New Reads

  • Mairelon the Magician – Patricia C. Wrede — I finally read this one (which takes place before Magician’s Ward) and while I didn’t love it as much as its sequel, it was still delightful! And I finally got to learn how Kim and Mairelon met. 🙂 🙂 Regency fantasy is (still) awesome!
  • Fly Away – Patricia MacLachlan — I hardly ever read contemporary, but I LOVE this author. This book was adorable and sweet and just precious and let me hug it.
  • The Worth of a King – Kendra E. Ardnek — Really enjoyed this new fantasy release! You can check out my review if you missed it, but basically Prince Delaney is MY FAVORITE and I need a winged horse and a cream cake ASAP.

September Nightstand

I’m currently in the middle of reading:

  • Fawkes – Nadine Brandes (review book)
  • Cinder – Marissa Meyer (for fun)

Hoping to read soon:

  • Spice Bringer – H.L. Burke (Fellowship of Fantasy Bookclub book of the month for September)
  • The Orphan’s Wish – Melanie Dickerson (review book)

I’m also have two or three re-reads, I a couple of books to edit and one to beta-read, and there’s also a couple of ebook review books… All of which adds up to about a dozen books. So I’m definitely going to stay busy this month. XD (Even if it wasn’t looking like it was already going to be a crazy month… *wilts slightly*)

I also just finished re-reading The Beast of Talesend (glorious as ever) and listening to Worldbuilding From the Inside Out by Janeen Ippolito (thanks to the author for the free audiobook code!) and enjoyed it. Mini review on Goodreads here. I told you I’ve been enjoying audiobooks suddenly. 😉


Bookish giveaway coming soon

Oh! And I’ll be having a blogiversary on my other blog (5 years since I started blogging! :O) next week, and I’m going to be giving away booooks! So… watch for that. 😉


That’s what I have for you today. Let me know what you’re currently reading or any bookish things you’re excited for! Thanks for reading! 🙂

The Worth of a King Review/Blog Tour

Hi everyone! Today I’m excited to be part of the blog tour for the latest book of an author friend, Kendra E. Ardnek! I’ll be sharing my review of this delightful book — and there’s also a giveaway, so keep reading! 😉


Title: The Worth of a King

Author: Kendra E. Ardnek

  • Date read: August 30, 2018
  • Rating: 5 stars
  • Genre: Christian Fantasy
  • Age: YA-ish
  • Year pub: 2018
  • Pages: 358 (Kindle)
  • Series: The Fall of a Star, #1
  • Fave character: Delaney! ❤
  • Source: The author
  • Notes: I received a free Advance Reader Copy ebook from the author. I was not required to write a positive review, and all opinions are my own.

SQUEE! This was a really enjoyable book. 😀

Things I loved:

+ Delaney! Of course he had to be at the top of this list. I LOVE THIS BOY. He’s fantastic. I don’t want to give away any of the plot, but the way he does all the awesomeness, and is also sweet, and stands firm on the right things when everything is conspiring against him—basically, I’m a fan. 😀

+ Winged Horses! Okay, I really want one of these. They were awesome.

+ The world, the “feel,” and just… I can’t quite explain it, but I really enjoyed being here in this setting. ^_^ The cultures were interesting (like the masked Zovordians!) and I just… I don’t know. It felt homey. 🙂 And fresh. And honestly it gave me Goldstone-Wood-series vibes which is always a good thing!

+ The plot was unique and intriguing, and once I got used to the weird politics and laws, those made it even more fascinating. 😀 Some of it wasn’t as exciting as I thought it might be—it’s sometimes more of a character story, which was awesome—but there were also plenty of high stakes and it kept me guessing.

+ Cream cake. Because I neeeed one! (Or possibly several.)

+ I’m also pleased that I was able to enjoy this book without having read the Rizkaland books. I believe this is the first book in a sort of prequel series to that, so I was wondering… but it stood on its own quite well. (Just a few things about the world I didn’t quite get a feel for… maybe if I’d read those it would have helped? But nothing serious.) It WAS a little weird reading this because of my experience not having read the Rizkaland books and YET also knowing things about… well… STUFF, due to things I’ve heard said about the series. So… I kind of knew things… which kind of colored some of my perspectives… and makes me wonder how I’d feel about things if I didn’t know certain THINGS. But that’s just me. XD On the whole, if you’ve never picked up a book by this author before, this is a good one to start with. 🙂

+ Humor is also one of my favorite things, and there was some of that scattered throughout to make me smile. 🙂

+ Sweet romance(s) which I WILL SAY NO MORE ON but so adorbz! 😀 I really liked the main one, but I also loved that there were a few other ones scattered along the side of the story. Keeps one on one’s toes and adds to the adorbz factor.

+ Twins. Because twin stories are fun, and I enjoyed Adrian and Obsidia (who, yes, I did like quite a bit when she wasn’t being… odd). ADRIAN IS PRECIOUS. He needs a hug. He could get hard to deal with at times too, but I liked his quietness and surprising strengths. And the whole twin thing was great.

+ The rest of the characters were quite intriguing and I don’t have time to mention them all here, but they fleshed it out nicely, and I came to care about so many of them. 🙂 And certain have me curious about thiiings. O_o

+ Granite—oh my word, I loved Granite!! He’s such a fun guy but also kinda mysterious because “Immortal King” and all that. I loved when he was around in any scene and I don’t even know how to describe it. Magnetism and humor, I guess. He was fabulous.

+ Oh, and Delaney. DELANEYYY. I did mention him, right? *cough*

Less favorite things:

Okay, so I have a couple of things I didn’t love… Once I got about halfway through, I confess that I started screaming every time a character “admitted” something, and some of the wording was a smidge modern-feeling. (OH. But I did read an ARC of this book, so it’s possible some of these things were smoothed out; I wouldn’t know. :P) Obsidia occasionally annoyed/puzzled me, especially how she reacted (or rather, failed to react) to a certain big thing (also so much blushing; help), and Nadilynn wasn’t my favorite (but I’m never big on the exuberant, chatty best friend character, so that’s just me. :P). (Oh, and I’m not sure an 18 year old boy would be thinking of a certain girl as just his “best friend”?? It made him feel young sometimes.) And I honestly don’t know how I feel about some of the things at the end or about everything involving the queen.

BUT ANYWAY, those are simply personal opinions, and small complaints, and didn’t detract much from my overall enjoyment of this delightful novel. 🙂

On the whole, I had a blast reading it, and I definitely recommend it to fans of fantasy with a Christian tilt to it. If you haven’t yet, check it out and dive into a whole new unique world with winged horses, shady dragons behind the scenes, and touching stories of beloved characters as they navigate the complexities of political intrigue, different cultures, matters of the heart, and of family lost and re-found. It made me happy and was an enjoyable fantasy read! ^_^


About The Worth of a King

Princess Obsidia’s father was killed the night she was born. Since there was no male heir, the crown went to the man who killed him, by Dialcian law. This never bothered her, growing up, and when it comes time for Obsidia to choose her husband, she chooses Prince Delaney, the son of that man, with little hesitation. Only then does her life start crumbling around her.

Adrian expected to live a normal life, taking his father’s place at the print shop when his father retired. But, on his eighteenth birthday, when the princess’ engagement is announced, his world is ripped out from under him when he learns that his life was a ruse, and he is the twin brother to the princess – and expected to take back his father’s throne.

Delaney knows that his country is hovering on the brink of war – and that his father may harbor murderous intentions towards his intended bride due to her Zovordian blood. He wants nothing more than to protect Obsidia and his people, but as merely prince, he has little power against his father.

The ancient war between the Dragons and the Immortal King and Queen is nearing its climax, and the three are already caught in it.


Links


About the Author

Kendra E. Ardnek loves fairytales and twisting them in new and exciting ways. She’s been or acting them on her dozen plus cousins and siblings for years. “Finish your story, Kendra,” is frequently heard at family gatherings. Her sole life goal has always been to grow up and be an author of fantasy and children’s tales that glorify God and His Word.

Find her online at:

Website || Blog || Goodreads || Facebook || Twitter || Amazon


Schedule

Here are the posts on the blog tour for today. Check out the full tour schedule HERE!

Thursday, August 30th

Reviews:

Interviews:


Giveaway

Kendra is giving away a paperback copy of The Worth of a King and a 15ml bottle of Peppermint oil (US only). You can find the info on her blog.

She also has a special prize for whoever leaves the most comments across the blog tour! (International)


Talk to me! Does the story intrigue you? HOW ABOUT THAT GORGEOUS COVER?? Thanks for reading! 🙂

Choose Your Own Story Blog Event: One Knight’s Journey

Welcome to The Page Dreamer! For those popping in from a different blog in the chain, I’m Deborah O’Carroll and I’m excited to be here because this is such a fun and unique blog event. 🙂

For those stopping here first, today I’m taking part in Sarah Holman’s Choose Your Own Story event. This is to celebrate the release of her latest book, Escape and Endurance, which I’m really excited about! 😀

In this event, you get to pick the outcome of this blog story by making choices. A lot of different things can happen. What are you waiting for? Start your adventure by clicking the image below.


“I see you’ve managed to get yourself in a bit of a fix.” Sir Andrew enjoyed watching the princess yelp and jump back in fright when she saw him. He had followed the princess and her guard back to a crude fort with an old watchtower in the center. He watched as the men-at-arms moved about and he was pretty sure that she was here of her own accord.

“Help!” the princess screamed.

Andrew leaned against the wall. “If it is for me you are shouting, there is no need, my hearing is quite good. If you are shouting for the other guards, there is no need. They all went running back to their master when they heard about an attack.”

The princess’ mouth hung open.

“And now, for you to learn a lesson.” Andrew closed and locked the tower door.

The tower was quite well stocked, and he spent a pleasant night enjoying all the comforts. Then he went back up into the tower and opened the door. The princess had been crying.

“Have you learned your lesson?”

She moved to stand in front of him. “I thought a lot about it last night, and I see that I’ve treated you and others poorly. I’m sorry.”

“Come, let’s get you home.” He held out his hand.

She smiled up at him and then…


Are you interested in reading about a knight, a tower, a princess, and a servant? Pick up a copy of Escape and Endurance! (Add on Goodreads.) Haven’t read the other books in the Tales of Taelis series? Not to worry. Each book can stand alone.


About Sarah

Sarah Holman is a not-so-typical girl, a homeschool graduate, sister to six awesome siblings, and lives in the great state of Texas. If there’s anything adventuresome about her life, it’s because she serves a God with a destiny greater than anything she could have imagined. You can find out more about her at her website: www.thedestinyofone.com
You can join the Adventurers (her newsletter) by going here: http://eepurl.com/bitBIf


Curious about the Tales of Taelis series? They’re Kingdom Adventure stories, and each of the books stand alone. 🙂 I’ve quite enjoyed them all so far, and I’m looking forward to reading Escape and Endurance too! ^_^

Check out my reviews: