“Slayer” by Kiersten White

DF57BC13-4647-4A27-ADF8-9721CDEDD1C8It’s no secret to many who know me — I absolutely *adore* Buffy the Vampire Slayer. I’ve watched it several times (PSA: It’s on Hulu!) and it never ceases to make me laugh, cry, laugh again, and cry some more. (I’m looking at you, “The Body”.)

So when I heard there was a Slayer book coming out, I knew there was no options. I was going to buy it, and I was going to buy it immediately. The stakes were high (pun intended) — would it hold up? Would it make me furious, another adaptation of my faves gone wrong?

Turns out, I LOVED IT.

Slayer starts out after the last season of the show ends, where Buffy rids the world of magic. Or something. But here’s where it’s different from the show, and a wholly awesome new perspective into the Slayer world. The story is told from the

 perspective of Nina, a teen girl who has grown up in the Watcher’s Academy and has spent her life learning how to become a healer. Her twin sister, Artemis, is also there, and she is more of the violent Watcher “type”, always feeling Nina like she is a bit of an outsider.

But then everything changes. Because (and the synopsis says it better than I can) “Nina is not only the newest Chosen One—she’s the last Slayer, ever. Period.”

Talk about pressure.

So you’ve got a Slayer, Watchers, teens and adults, demons, romantic interests, the works! And most importantly, the “who is the bad guy” trope. Is it him? Is it her? It’s her! No wait, is it him? I love this type of storyline so much — it keeps you guessing from beginning to end.

Anyway — If you loved Buffy Summers, you’ll love Nina and Artemis and all of their friends (and foes). There is supposedly more of this story to come, and I can’t wait for them to SLAY me like this one did. 😉

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Buy your copy here!

[Bonus: I listened to the audiobook of this book, and it’s killer!]

Links in post are affiliate links whose proceeds go toward the maintenance of this blog.

“The Night Before” by Wendy Walker

40867676The Night Before is a keep-you-guessing mystery told in the always classic chronologically mixed format — alternating between “Present Day,” “Months Ago,” and of course, “The Night Before”.

Laura Heart has a shady past and a knack for overthinking her romantic relationships. When she goes through her most recent breakup with “Asshole,” she packs her bags and moves from NYC back to her childhood home to live with her sister, Rosie. Rosie, her husband Joe, and their neighbor Gabe, all are connected by proximity, but also by the fact that they were best friends growing up in that same neighborhood. They know each others’ childhood secrets, which for some, are more sinister than is typical.

To ease Laura’s heartache, Rosie helps Laura craft a dating profile and get a date with a respectable, mature, older man — one who would seemingly have a stable life to help Laura keep her head straight. When Laura doesn’t return from her date, her family fears the worst.

This book is a master class in the unreliable narrator, the alternating-time chapters, in leading you down the road only for you to find it wasn’t taking you where you thought.

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Pre-order the book here (releases May 14, 2019)

I was given a copy of this book in exchange for my honest opinion. Links in post are affiliate links whose proceeds go toward the maintenance of this blog.

Blog Tour: “In Another Life” by CC Hunter

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I’m pleased to be a part of the blog tour for In Another Life by CC Hunter, releasing today!

Check out the book’s description:

What would you do if your whole life was a lie and learning the truth could cost you your life?

From New York Times bestselling author of the Shadow Falls series comes C. C. Hunter’s new YA thriller about a girl who learns that she may have been kidnapped as a child, and must race to uncover the truth about her past before she winds up a victim.

Chloe was three years old when she became Chloe Holden, but her adoption didn’t scar her, and she’s had a great life. Now, fourteen years later, her loving parents’ marriage has fallen apart and her mom has moved them to Joyful, Texas. Starting twelfth grade as the new kid at school, everything Chloe loved about her life is gone. And feelings of déjà vu from her early childhood start haunting her.

When Chloe meets Cash Colton she feels drawn to him, as though they’re kindred spirits. Until Cash tells her the real reason he sought her out: Chloe looks exactly like the daughter his foster parents lost years ago, and he’s determined to figure out the truth.

As Chloe and Cash delve deeper into her adoption, the more things don’t add up, and the more strange things start happening. Why is Chloe’s adoption a secret that people would kill for?

How awesome does that sound?! Questions and intrigue everywhere! You can buy your copy here.

[A Personal Note From Ellie: With the recent flooding in my home state (NE) and helping my family clean up their water-damaged basement, I was unable to finish the entire book by today, but what I read so far was definitely intriguing! This post is a spotlight on the book to recommend it to my readers, but I won’t be including a rating as I normally do until I finish reading completely.]

I was given a copy of this book by Wednesday Books in exchange for my honest opinion. Links in post are affiliate links whose proceeds go toward the maintenance of this blog.

Blog Tour: “White Stag” by Kara Barbieri

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New release Tuesday!

I’m so excited to ring in the new year by participating in the blog tour for White Stag!

Janneke has spent 100 years as a thrall (basically a human slave) to the young goblin lord Soren. Previously, she “belonged” to Lydian, Soren’s cruel and sadistic uncle, and before that, lived in her family’s village before Lydian burned it down. When the goblin king dies, the hunt begins to have a new power on the throne, and Janneke is determined not to let Lydian become the new Erlking. The first to find the mystical white stag and kill it to claim the throne wins.

White Stag is a YA fantasy that takes a new spin on Goblins and changelings and adds a quest or hunt-like feel similar to Shadow and Bone by Leigh Bardugo, and also feels like a better-written cousin of the A Court of Thorns and Roses series by Sarah J. Maas — a young human woman coming into her own and discovering that she is just as powerful as the magical beings around her.

(Also, I do want to note a few quick content warnings: Physical and emotional abuse, several graphic rape scenes/memory sequences, gore, mutilation. This list is not comprehensive and I urge caution if this content may negatively affect your well-being.)

Purchase the book here.

I was given a copy of this book by Wednesday Books in exchange for my honest opinion. Links in post are affiliate links whose proceeds go toward the maintenance of this blog.

Blog Tour: “What They Don’t Know” by Nicole Maggi + Giveaway!

36449964I’m excited to be a part of the ~*Official Blog Tour*~ for What They Don’t Know by Nicole Maggi, out today!

When their high school teacher assigns journal entries as homework, Mellie and Lise find they have plenty to offload into their diaries.

Mellie is the daughter of the mayor, who makes it well-known that he is super conservative — plus, now he’s running for senate. Mellie’s family is in the spotlight all the time, and it becomes increasingly more urgent that she deal with her secret. She was raped. And now she’s pregnant.

Lise has always felt that she was intuitive to people’s feelings. When her grade-school friend, Mellie, starts behaving differently, Lise is the only one who notices. She’s the only one that reaches out. And to Mellie’s luck, Lise is just the friend that she needs during this difficult time in her life.

What They Don’t Know takes a good, hard look at what it is like for someone to go through the tough decision to have an abortion as an unwed teen in a conservative world. Plus, Mellie has the added trauma of her pregnancy being a result of a rape. Stories come out daily of these abuses against women (and others, too), so it’s a poignant topic.

In these political climes, with laws restricting the bodily rights of cis female, non-binary, and trans individuals, books like this will become increasingly important. Abortion is a difficult life choice to make, and Nicole Maggi explores the feelings Mellie has — the knowledge she obtains, that no one can know how this situation feels until they find themselves in it. The decision to control one’s own body, to be free to make their own choice.

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Buy the book here.

You can also click here to enter to win a copy in this giveaway sponsored by Sourcebooks Fire!

I was given a copy of this book in exchange for my honest opinion. Links in post are affiliate links whose proceeds go toward the maintenance of this blog.

“The Night Before” by Wendy Walker: An Official 2019 Pre-order Recommendation

This year, I’m going to be highlighting some 2019 titles available for pre-order that I’m completely nerding out over. Today’s post covers the first of these!

Wendy Walker slammed onto the thriller scene with All is Not Forgotten, and followed it up with the incredible Emma in the Night.

Now she’s gearing up for the release of her third, The Night Before. Here’s the description for the book:

A shocking, twisty novel that has the biggest names in the thriller community buzzing…

Rosie Ferro and Laura Heart are sisters, but as different as it is possible to be. One is lucky in love and has a conventional family: a husband, and a small son. The other has a troubled past she is still struggling to break free from.

When Laura disappears after going on a date with a stranger she met online, Rosie, her protector since they were young, springs into action to look for her. But as she slowely uncovers more about the situation, Rosie begins to fear that her sister might have been more of a danger than the man she went out with.

Told in duel timelines – the night of and the night before, Wendy Walker’s new novel is a riveting examination of family loyalty, obsession, and how just how far we will go for love.

I was provided an early copy of the book to provide my honest feedback, and boy oh boy. This book is just too easy to devour.

This baby bookling is so newborn that it doesn’t even have a cover yet! You’ll have to wait on the edge of your seat for my full review and the book itself, but here’s a little nibble of my thoughts!

“This book is a master class in the unreliable narrator, the alternating-time chapters, in leading you down the road only for you to find it wasn’t taking you where you thought.”

I gave The Night Before an unreserved four stars! 🌟🌟🌟🌟

The book comes out in May 2019, but lucky you! You can pre-order the book on Amazon here!

I was given a copy of this book in exchange for my honest opinion. Links in post are affiliate links whose proceeds go toward the maintenance of this blog.

“Sadie” by Courtney Summers

IMG_0235It’s no secret to those who know me — I love a good mystery. I enjoy true crime books, shows, and podcasts (My Favorite Murder 😍), not to mention mystery books and detective stories, be they true or fiction.

So at BookExpo in May, when I heard about a YA mystery called Sadie, I was all in.

The story follows two threads:

The first thread is Sadie’s story, in which she vows to avenge her younger sister Mattie’s unsolved murder. Growing up in a trailer park with an addict mother, Sadie was neglected early in life. When Mattie was born, Sadie took over the role of mother, promising herself that Mattie would have a loving childhood to look back on.

The second thread follows a podcast called The Girls that reminded me of Serial and Up and Vanished. The host, West McCray, does his best to track down Sadie, doing research and interviewing those who knew her before, as well as those who meet Sadie on her quest for justice. Another cool thing to note: the podcast is actually real — it’s called The Girls: Find Sadie (find it anywhere you listen to podcasts). It follows the first several “podcast chapters” in Sadie, and man, is it chilling and well-done.

Sadie is equal parts thrilling, tragic, fascinating, and horrifying. There’s a murder, all kinds of abuse, road trips, new friends, new enemies, and ultimately, a mystery that you won’t be able to put down.

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Buy the book here.
Listen to the podcast on Apple here.

I was given a copy of this book in exchange for my honest opinion. Links in post are affiliate links whose proceeds go toward the maintenance of this blog.