Monday, December 9, 2019

Regretting You by Colleen Hoover Blog Tour

From #1 New York Times bestselling author of It Ends with Us comes a poignant novel about family, first love, grief, and betrayal that will touch the hearts of both mothers and daughters.

Morgan Grant and her sixteen-year-old daughter, Clara, would like nothing more than to be nothing alike.

Morgan is determined to prevent her daughter from making the same mistakes she did. By getting pregnant and married way too young, Morgan put her own dreams on hold. Clara doesn’t want to follow in her mother’s footsteps. Her predictable mother doesn’t have a spontaneous bone in her body.

With warring personalities and conflicting goals, Morgan and Clara find it increasingly difficult to coexist. The only person who can bring peace to the household is Chris—Morgan’s husband, Clara’s father, and the family anchor. But that peace is shattered when Chris is involved in a tragic and questionable accident. The heartbreaking and long-lasting consequences will reach far beyond just Morgan and Clara.

While struggling to rebuild everything that crashed around them, Morgan finds comfort in the last person she expects to, and Clara turns to the one boy she’s been forbidden to see. With each passing day, new secrets, resentment, and misunderstandings make mother and daughter fall further apart. So far apart, it might be impossible for them to ever fall back together.

Add to Goodreads –

Buy Links

Amazon US  ~  Amazon UK  ~  Amazon Au  ~  Amazon Ca
~  Also Available with KindleUnlimited  ~

Despite knowing I just pissed my mother off by being half an hour late for curfew, I still can’t stop smiling. That kiss with Miller was worth it. I bring my fingers to my lips.

I’ve never been kissed like that. The guys I’ve kissed in the past all seemed like they were in a hurry, wanting to shove their tongue in my mouth before I changed my mind.

Miller was the opposite. He was so patient, yet in a chaotic way. It was like he’d thought about kissing me so often that he wanted to savor every second of it.

I don’t know that I’ll ever not smile when I think about that kiss. It kind of makes me nervous for school tomorrow. I’m not sure where that kiss leaves us, but it felt like it was a statement. I just don’t know what exactly that statement was.

My phone buzzes in my back pocket. I roll over and pull it out, then fall onto my back again. It’s a text from Miller.

MILLER: I don’t know about you, but sometimes when something significant happens, I get home and think of all the things I wish had gone differently. All the things I wish I would have said.

ME: Is that happening now?

MILLER: Yes. I don’t feel like I was entirely forthcoming with you.

I roll onto my stomach, hoping to ease the nausea that just passed through me. It was going so well…

ME: What weren’t you honest about?

MILLER: I was honest. Just not entirely forthcoming, if there’s a difference. I left a lot out of our conversation that I want you to know.

ME: Like what?

MILLER: Like why I’ve liked you for as long as I have.

I wait for him to elaborate, but he doesn’t. I’m staring at my phone with so much intensity that I almost throw it when it rings unexpectedly. It’s Miller’s phone number. I hesitate before answering it, because I rarely ever talk on the phone. I much prefer texting. But he knows I have my phone in my hand, so I can’t very well send it to voice mail. I swipe my finger across the screen and then roll off the bed and head to my bathroom for more privacy. I sit on the edge of the tub.


“Hey,” he says.

“Sorry. It’s too much to text.”

“You’re kind of freaking me out with all the innuendos.”

“Oh. No, it’s all good. Don’t be nervous. I just should have said this to you in person.” Miller inhales a deep breath, and then on the exhale, he starts talking. “When I was fifteen, I watched you in a school play. You had the lead role, and at one point, you performed a monologue that went on for like two whole minutes. You were so convincing and you looked so heartbroken I was ready to walk onto the stage and hug you. When the play was finally over and the actors came back out onto the stage, you were smiling and laughing, and there wasn’t a trace of that character left in you. I was in awe, Clara. You have this charisma about you that I don’t think you’re aware of, but it’s captivating. I was a scrawny kid as a sophomore, and even though I’m a year older than you, I hadn’t quite filled out yet, and I had acne and felt inferior to you, so I never worked up the courage to approach you. Another year went by, and I continued to admire you from afar. Like that time you ran for school treasurer and tripped walking off the stage, but you jumped up and did this weird little kick and threw your arms up in the air and made the entire audience laugh. Or that time Mark Avery popped your bra strap in the hallway, and you were so sick of him doing it that you followed him to his classroom, reached inside your hoodie, and took off your bra and then threw it at him. I remember you yelling something like, ‘If you want to touch a bra so damn bad, just keep it, you perv!’ Then you stormed out. It was epic. Everything you do is epic, Clara. Which is why I never had the courage to approach you, because an epic girl needs an equally epic guy, and I guess I’ve just never felt epic enough for you. I’ve said epic so many times in the last fifteen seconds—I’m so sorry.”

He’s out of breath when he finally stops talking.

I’m smiling so hard my cheeks ache. I had no idea he felt this way. No idea.

I wait a few seconds to make sure he’s done; then I finally respond. I’m pretty sure he can hear from my voice alone that I’m smiling. “First of all, it’s hard to believe you were ever insecure. And second, I think you’re pretty epic, too, Miller. Always have. Even when you were scrawny and had acne.”

He laughs a little. “Yeah?”


I can hear him sigh. “Glad I got that off my chest, then. See you at school tomorrow?”

“Good night.”

We end the call, and I don’t know how long I sit and stare at my phone.

Reviews by the Wicked Reads Review Team

Spoiler-free Review

Colleen Hoover sparked my love for the Young Adult genre back in 2012, and the author is still my go-to recommendation to draw other readers into the genre.

I need to caution, Regretting You bridges several genres, featuring two narrators from two different generations, so it's not truly a Young Adult novel. There's almost a history repeating itself vibe, as reading from the mother's point-of-view after reading the daughter's, it's as if seeing the 'past you' and the 'future you' if you don't alter your path of course. "I'm not like my mother!"

Exploring the relationship pitfalls between mother and daughter – this premise is sure to resonate in most female readers, since we've all experienced being the daughter, and some are honored to experience being the mother to a daughter. The failures, insecurities, and fear of disappointment. Highly relatable across the board.

Many facets of the human condition coalesce in Regretting You, exploring the dynamic between mother and daughter, with so much pain dividing them. Loss. Secrets and lies. Miscommunication and misunderstanding. Betrayal. Tragedy. Healing. The strained relationship between mother and daughter, from both outside forces and mistakes made, added with the natural, strained dynamic between teenage daughters and their mothers.

There is romance as well, as Morgan and Clara navigate love and life. There's a reason I don't focus on the romance in the review, as it was heartwarming and realistic, because the dynamic between the mother and daughter is where the novel shined. As they fight against the current, denying they are anything alike, something mothers and daughters alike can appreciate once they're older.

Regretting You is a journey of forgiveness.

As an adult, I think I appreciated the novel more than a younger reader could, the subtle nuances of emotion resonating, versus the more addictive page-turners Colleen Hoover generally creates for the young adult crowd.

Avid Reader☆☆☆☆☆
4.5 stars
M/F Romance

Morgan has your typical suburban housewife life. She got pregnant very young and never really was able to pursue her dreams. But she made a good life for her and her family. Her husband, Chris, and daughter, Clara, like to poke fun at her – at her predictability. Morgan sees that as a weakness and something she wants to change. When she decides to try something new, before she can even really try, tragedy strikes her family and friends.

Clara is your typical teenager. At times, I wanted to yell at her and tell her to wake up. But because kids think the world of their parents and believe that they can do no wrong, I can totally understand her frustrations. When she helps a fellow classmate out, Miller, she couldn’t have known what he would bring to her life.

Jonah is a wonderful character. He’s strong, loving, and a great dad. He is also a great teacher and really understands his students and what makes them tick. I really enjoyed watching him figure out his role in the story.

This is a story of heartbreak, heartache, love from afar, and acceptance. I found it somewhat difficult to write this review, because this book makes you run through the spectrum of emotions. You’ll laugh, cry, be super angry, be hurt, and feel love. Hoover does it again in this story of love and family.

Q&A with Author Colleen Hoover

You are ‘label-less’ in the fact that you write in several genres. Readers never know what to expect next. If someone asks, how do you label yourself?

When I self-published my first novel I had no idea what genre to put it in. I thought I had written a drama but it turns to that I had written a romance. I’ve learned a lot since then, but I still don’t put a lot of weight in genre when I write. When your best friend is begging you to read a book, it’s not going to matter what genre it is when someone you trust is passionate about the story.

To keep all of your stories and characters straight, you must be very organized.

I’m the most disorganized person you will ever meet! I have no schedule. I can’t wake up before nine in the morning. I probably don’t go to bed until like three in the morning. I usually work about 16 hours a day.

What happens if you get blocked when you are writing?

If I get stuck writing, I go for a drive and play music. Music really helps me plot. I love The Avett Brothers, X Ambassadors, Airborne Toxic Event... I could go on and on.

What can you tell readers about your latest release Regretting You?

I would spoil it if I told you about it! Most of my books are like that. I can’t say what they are about or it spoils it. But I can say that Regretting You is told from a dual point-of-view centered on the inner lives of both a teen and adult protagonist.

Sounds like lots of different types of readers will be interested!

Absolutely. I wanted to write a book that bridged the gap between young adult and contemporary romance so that mothers can read with their daughters. I think it’s exciting to see people sharing reading experiences.

Colleen Hoover is the #1 New York Times bestselling author of several novels, including the bestselling women’s fiction novel It Ends with Us and the bestselling psychological thriller Verity. She has won the Goodreads Choice Award for Best Romance three years in a row—for Confess (2015), It Ends with Us (2016), and Without Merit (2017). Confess was adapted into a seven-episode online series. In 2015, Hoover and her family founded the Bookworm Box, a bookstore and monthly subscription service that offers signed novels donated by authors. All profits go to various charities each month to help those in need. Hoover lives in Texas with her husband and their three boys.

Connect with Colleen

Facebook  ~  Twitter  ~  Instagram  ~  Website  ~  Goodreads
Colleen Hoover’s CoHorts Facebook Group

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Hosted by

Reviewers on the Wicked Reads Review Team were provided a free copy of Regretting You by Colleen Hoover to read and review for this tour.

Thursday, November 21, 2019

Buried Secrets by John R. Petrie

Teen detectives Wyatt and Timothy are determined to find out what happened to a group of boys who disappeared years ago—but surviving the mystery might be as challenging as solving it.

To make ends meet, Wyatt works construction instead of attending school, and it’s in an old house he’s gutting that he finds a collection of articles about a missing boy. Wyatt knew Bobby LaFleur before he disappeared, and this new clue stirs up Wyatt’s old memories.

Sheriff’s son Timothy Mitchell can’t resist a challenge—or the chance to show his dad he’s more than capable of working in law enforcement. Together with Wyatt, he investigates the disappearance and learns Bobby isn’t the only victim—and that Wyatt and Bobby were more than friends. As the case grows darker and more twisted, the connection between Wyatt and Timothy deepens. But the secrets they uncover could get them killed.

A Harmony Ink Press Title

Add to Goodreads –

Book 1
Buy Links

Amazon US  ~  Amazon UK  ~  Amazon Au  ~  Amazon Ca
B&N  ~  Google Play  ~  iTunes  ~  Kobo
Dreamspinner Press

Reviews by the Wicked Reads Review Team

Buried Secrets is a young adult novel in which local teen Wyatt asks the sheriff’s son, Timothy, for helping in finding out what happened to his friend, Bobby, who disappeared four years prior. Timothy wants to be a cop and agrees to help Wyatt try to solve the mystery, and also hopes to impress his dad.

This story mixes teenage romance and mystery well and also deals with the family lives of these two young teens. I loved the family dynamics we see with Timothy’s family. Timothy is openly gay, and he has accepting and supporting parents. Wyatt’s home life is the complete opposite with a drunk, neglectful mother who is full of prejudice.

On the mystery, as a reader, with a few clues I figured out what had likely happened early on but I enjoyed seeing Timothy figure it out and watching the story unfold. There is a good helping of danger and suspense to keep you a bit on edge right through the story. On the romance side of things, I liked the age appropriate romance. These guys are smart enough to realise they are still young and they don’t go rushing into things they might not be ready for.

I really enjoyed Buried Secrets. It has a good, fast pace and I had a good time reading it. A solid three stars from me.

John R. Petrie grew up in Boston and now lives in the Bronx, NY. Almost his entire working career has been spent around books, from his first job in the town library to more than twenty years bookselling in one of the biggest bookstores in the US. He’s also worked for the Housing Works thrift stores in NYC, Valiant Entertainment Comics, and is now a bookstore manager, which gives him too much access to books and not enough time to read them.

He’s had stories published in True Romance magazine, had a play he wrote produced at his college, acted, danced, and was nominated for a Barrymore award playing Belize in Angels in America.

He stays up too late, eats too much junk food, and has been reading Wonder Woman comics for over forty years.

He is very, very happy to be published by Harmony Ink Press. He hopes to continue writing stories which make people smile.

He likes to hear from people, so say hello.

Connect with John

Twitter  ~  Goodreads

Harmony Ink -

Reviewers on the Wicked Reads Review Team were provided a free copy of Buried Secrets (Timothy and Wyatt Mysteries #1) by John R. Petrie to read and review.

Friday, October 4, 2019

The Grace Year by Kim Liggett

A speculative thriller in the vein of The Handmaid’s Tale and The Power. Optioned by Universal and Elizabeth Banks to be a major motion picture!

No one speaks of the grace year. It’s forbidden.

Girls are told they have the power to lure grown men from their beds, drive women mad with jealousy. They believe their very skin emits a powerful aphrodisiac, the potent essence of youth, of a girl on the edge of womanhood. That’s why they’re banished for their sixteenth year, to release their magic into the wild so they can return purified and ready for marriage. But not all of them will make it home alive.

Sixteen-year-old Tierney James dreams of a better life—a society that doesn’t pit friend against friend or woman against woman, but as her own grace year draws near, she quickly realizes that it’s not just the brutal elements they must fear. It’s not even the poachers in the woods, men who are waiting for their chance to grab one of the girls in order to make their fortune on the black market. Their greatest threat may very well be each other.

With sharp prose and gritty realism, The Grace Year examines the complex and sometimes twisted relationships between girls, the women they eventually become, and the difficult decisions they make in-between.

Add to Goodreads –

Buy Links

Amazon US  ~  Amazon UK  ~  Amazon Au  ~  Amazon Ca
B&N  ~  Google Play  ~  iTunes  ~  Kobo

Reviews by the Wicked Reads Review Team

Spoiler-Free review.

There are times where I’ll add a disclaimer to my review, stating how I’m not sure how to review the novel. Added to this issue, I wish to maintain a spoiler-free review, simply because I went into it blindly and found a higher entertainment value due to it.

When I see the tagline of a novel featuring the titles of novels by other authors, I tend to steer clear, my ethics getting rubbed raw. It’s just a personal pet-peeve of mine, how you’re not to compare yourself to others. But in this case, I tend to agree. It’s helpful for readers to know that The Grace Year is an amalgamation of The Handmaid’s Tale and Lord of the Flies.

As a feminist, this novel was beyond difficult to read without being filled with rage. However, as a feminist, this novel had a spark of hope at the ending, where women were empowered instead of subjugated.

Set during an indiscriminate era, in a world built around the false belief systems of religion, where men are the voice of God and women are reduced to nothing but the harbingers of sin, all to keep the men in power and the women under their constant control.

Every year, the mature girls (I believe it was sixteen years of age), an entire grouping of girls are segregated, some chosen to become wives, whereas others are chosen to become workers or outcast for the males’ pleasure. These girls are coming into their magic (the ability to have a voice, see logic, and notice how everything isn’t as it seems). They are sent off to endure their grace year (to break them into their role of subservience).

What happens during the grace year is tragic, heinous, gut-wrenching, and beyond difficult to read. It’s a mix of environmental factors and mental suggestion, along with actual evil human beings. The girls aren’t thought as human beings, but ITs, evil creatures who need to expel their magic.

What I struggled so hard with the world building, not so much how twisted and intriguing I found it… the mothers and fathers sent their daughters there, a choice made for offspring in their care. What monsters they truly would be, to send your own child to certain death to satisfy a perverse need to be in control. The outcast women of that age group weren’t subjected to the grace year, so how come the Poachers didn’t cull their own mothers and sisters for never releasing their magic? As children were born outside the Country. The Poachers not seeing these young women as humans, so why did they see their own sisters as humans? Why did only the girls from town have magic?

Another hard facet to digest is how God-fearing people had no issue murdering without a second thought, as long as it suited their own needs. The need for power. The need to balance the genders, so there would be more men than women.

Absolutely fascinating and equally frustrating, I read The Grace Year in a single sitting, unable to put it down. Equally feeling compassion for the girls, while also loathing how weak the majority were for believing the lies, never questioning the conditioning, never standing up for themselves (at their encampment).

The novel itself proves how we women are our own worst enemies, the internalized misogyny running so deep we don’t recognize it. We may not be separated by the males in this day and age, but our judgments, vocal admonishments, and jealous hostility toward our sisters is what keeps us from banning together in solidarity. Our sick need for male validation, as if our fellow women are our competition. This mindset making it possible to be subjugated by the very ones we all so desperately need to validate us.

Young Adult age-range: 14+ due to on-scene violence and fade-to-black sexual situations.

Kim Liggett, originally from the rural Midwest, moved to New York City to pursue a career in the arts. She's the author of Blood and Salt, Heart of Ash, The Last Harvest (Bram Stoker Award Winner), The Unfortunates, and The Grace Year. Kim spends her free time studying tarot and scouring Manhattan for rare vials of perfume and the perfect egg-white cocktail.

Connect with Kim

Facebook  ~  Twitter  ~  Instagram  ~  Website  ~  Goodreads

Reviewers on the Wicked Reads Review Team were provided a free copy of The Grace Year by Kim Liggett to read and review.

Thursday, October 3, 2019

Cranberry Boys by Scudder James Jr.

Is it possible to have it all—even for a boy from a dying town of old cranberry bogs? Even for the son of religious zealots who will never accept his being gay? Even if his closeted boyfriend will never acknowledge their relationship and dates girls to distract people?

Sixteen-year-old cross-country runner Zeph hopes so, because he isn’t giving up on his happily ever after. He has big plans for life after high school and for his relationship with Connor… even if Connor insists they keep it secret.

Then Bronson, an old friend of Zeph’s, returns to Watermarsh after being kicked out of boarding school with secrets of his own in tow. But they keep their eyes on the prize and start a blog to impress colleges who often dismiss small-town students like them.

But not even Zeph can run from everything as his home life implodes and the love triangle he’s stuck in with Bronson and Connor begins to crumble. He’ll do whatever it takes to hold on to hope—even if it means a covert trip to Bronson’s old prep school.

Add to Goodreads –

Book 1
Buy Links

Amazon US  ~  Amazon UK  ~  Amazon Au  ~  Amazon Ca
B&N  ~  Google Play  ~  iTunes  ~  Kobo
Harmony Ink at Dreamspinner Press

Reviews by the Wicked Reads Review Team

When we first meet Zeph (great name), his life seems pretty good. His best friend Connor is his secret boyfriend, he is on the track team, he is well liked, he has solid parents (even if they are religious zealots), and a really cool attic hangout in his dad’s factory.

It doesn’t take long before Zeph’s life starts to become complicated. He’d rather things with Connor not be secret. And are you really boyfriends if your secret boyfriend is getting it on with girls? Then Bronson returns to school having been gone for several years. He his openly gay and interested in Zeph, and Zeph finds being with Bronson so much easier than being with Connor. Add in issues with his parents, issues with being in the closest, general teenage angst, and suddenly Zeph’s easy life is anything but and things get quite serious.

I was fascinated by Zeph. He is a good guy but there were times when he didn’t stand up for himself or speak up when I thought he should have, and it frustrated me. But it interested me too. He was intelligent, why did he seem so tongue tied at times? I wanted to learn more about Zeph and the further into the book we got, the more I understood him.

There are some very difficult scenes in this story and also some uplifting ones. Zeph’s journey sucked me right in and I even cancelled plans I had made so that I could stay inside and keep reading. Cranberry Boys is an excellent young adult novel that is about more than just the romance, it is about growing up and it is really well done. A solid four stars from me.

Scudder James Jr believes happily ever after begins today. Junior high was terrible, boarding school better, and college the place he met the boyfriend he married (despite a pit stop in a fraternity). He started in finance because he thought he had to, but instead became a counselor for refugees, a fundraiser, and a teacher of sex and spirituality classes. After Chicago, Seattle, London, and Japan, he’s back in Boston where it all started. His favorite place to write has a harbor view of two colonial ships.

Scudder loves telling stories in print and on film. He’s thrilled that his short LGBTQ films have shown around the world in places as unexpected as Alabama and East Africa. Twenty years ago, he was diagnosed with a debilitating neurological disease that doctors are bewildered has disappeared. Scudder is an avid meditator and passionate about appreciating every moment.

One of his favorite mornings has been waking up on a boat in Patagonia with his perfectly imperfect partner and hiking an island of 130,000 penguins.

Connect with Scudder

Website  ~  Goodreads

Reviewers on the Wicked Reads Review Team were provided a free copy of Cranberry Boys (Watermarsh Tales #1) by Scudder James Jr. to read and review.

Friday, September 6, 2019

I Dare You to Break Curfew by Eva Muñoz

To save humankind, Camron may have to fall in love.

Vampires are real, and they are called the Inshari. After Camron Masters breaks curfew the first time, he discovers them living beneath Braylin Academy. The second time he breaks curfew, he meets a mad scientist who convinces him to take part in an experiment in exchange for more information about the Inshari. A small pinprick later, Camron wakes up as one of them and finds himself bonded to the prince of his dreams—vampire or not, Troyan is dark, brooding, and oh so delicious. But there’s the enigmatic Zaire vying for his attention too. Or is Camron just a pawn in a centuries-old feud?

All Camron’s ever wanted was to live his own fairy tale. But there’s always a catch after meeting Prince Charming.

Add to Goodreads –

Book 1
Buy Links

Amazon US  ~  Amazon UK  ~  Amazon Au  ~  Amazon Ca
B&N  ~  Google Play  ~  iTunes  ~  Kobo
Harmony Ink

Reviews by the Wicked Reads Review Team

This review is by a mature adult. Do I believe a younger reader would be enthralled by the story and the characters? Absolutely yes. Do I believe I look too deeply into a novel? A resounding yes.

Cam attends a boarding school, where there is one rule... never remain on campus after curfew or risk automatic expulsion. The book starts with what exactly happens should a student remain on campus after dusk.

I Dare You to Break Curfew has a unique take on vampire culture, more flesh-eaters than blood-drinkers. Where an entire world is hidden on the grounds of a boarding school. These flesh-eaters are looking for a human to experiment on, as they slowly wither from a wasting disease.

The premise and the world-building did hit the sweet spot of highly inventive and original. However, the pacing was so rapid, I felt as if we journeyed from point A to D without B & C being explained. I was just as confused as Cam.

While I enjoyed the book, there were a few things that kept me from fully immersing myself in the storyline.

Cam's voice was inherently feminine, as well as his actions, thought processes, and behaviors. That's not a bad thing, just that I could sense the female voice of the writer beneath.

On the character front, no matter if they are adolescents by vampire terms, they still lived nearly a thousand years of days, so I was unsure why they still acted as teen humans. Time is what matures all beings, not chronological age dependent on species. So it was off-putting, how thousand-year-old vampires were essentially going to high school, yet also ready to take over the task of leading their people and developing a cure for their malady.

When it came to a betrothal, where the thousand-year-old vampire continuously attacked and bullied Cam, as if this would somehow buy Troyan's affections... I was confused.

Do teen girls act as if their crush is their hostage? Maybe.

Usually around age fourteen, we figure out, no matter our gender, the other party has a say in the matter. I mean, who would want to force someone to marry them? Held hostage for an eternity. Sociopathic much? But I see this theme repeatedly. I feel for teen girls, because they aren't the monsters literature paints them to be.

Would someone who lived a thousand years act in such an unhinged manner? No. No way. Calculating and manipulative? Oh, yes.

It just left a bad taste in my mouth, how one of the only female characters was created simply to be a vapid harpy, painting all women as if we have to force men to partner with us. Yes, I'm reading too much into this, but I see it in just about every book I read, no matter the genre or age-group.

Other than my feminist beef with how females were portrayed, I enjoyed the story for the most part, finding the novel to be unlike anything I've read before.

Where I was confused on the world building front... to slowly wither and die over a millennia seems like a better deal than to become human and perhaps die in a car accident a few days later, with no guarantee of living another fifty years at most. Also, losing all your enhanced abilities. But that's just me.

With that being said, I'm curious to see where the story goes next. I'm willing to read more by this author before I make a decision on whether or not we're a good fit, reading-wise.

Definitely recommend to readers looking for a new take on vampire culture, specifically those who don't look too deep into things or nitpick, like yours truly.

Young Adult age-range: 14+, featuring intimacy and violence.

Eva Muñoz loves dreaming of worlds filled with hot guys falling in love with each other. She believes that love is love is love and everyone has a right to find their person. Her love for writing began in high school. It was because her teacher complimented a story she had written that put her on the path she is on today. She would spin yarns on her father’s electric typewriter, bind the pages together, and bring the finished product to school for her classmate to pass around and swoon over. Little did she know at the time that writing would be a career she never knew she wanted.

She may have taken a circuitous path toward her passion for writing, but when she finally made that decision to stick with it after countless rejections, she never looked back. A degree in creative writing helps too. When she’s not at her favorite coffee shop thinking up new worlds and characters to explore, you can find Eva in a classroom teaching creative writing of all things. Talk about passion meets day job. Today she is molding impressionable minds the way her teacher once did for her.

Connect with Eva

Twitter  ~  Goodreads

Reviewers on the Wicked Reads Review Team were provided a free copy of I Dare You to Break Curfew (Inshari Chronicles #1) by Eva Muñoz to read and review.

Tuesday, June 11, 2019

Storm and Fury by Jennifer L. Armentrout

Enter a world of gargoyle protectors, rising demons and one girl with an explosive secret.

Eighteen-year-old Trinity Marrow may be going blind, but she can see and communicate with ghosts and spirits. Her unique gift is part of a secret so dangerous that she’s been in hiding for years in an isolated compound fiercely guarded by Wardens—gargoyle shape-shifters who protect humankind from demons. If the demons discover the truth about Trinity, they’ll devour her, flesh and bone, to enhance their own powers.

When Wardens from another clan arrive with disturbing reports that something out there is killing both demons and Wardens, Trinity’s safe world implodes. Not the least because one of the outsiders is the most annoying and fascinating person she’s ever met. Zayne has secrets of his own that will upend her world yet again—but working together becomes imperative once demons breach the compound and Trinity’s secret comes to light. To save her family and maybe the world, she’ll have to put her trust in Zayne. But all bets are off as a supernatural war is unleashed…

Add to Goodreads –

Book 1
Buy Links

Amazon US  ~  Amazon UK  ~  Amazon Au  ~  Amazon Ca
B&N  ~  Google Play  ~  iTunes  ~  Kobo
Inkyard Press – Harlequin

Reviews by the Wicked Reads Review Team

I am a HUGE fan of Jennifer L. Armentrout (JLA) and I have read most of her books, which means I was of course so excited to get my hands on Storm Fury, the first book in The Harbinger series! Storm Fury (The Harbinger #1) by JLA is a spin off series from The Dark Elements series. I would highly recommend reading The Dark Elements series first before diving into Storm Fury. This book draws you in from the first page and I couldn’t put it down. JLA does not disappoint and I was completely hooked from start to finish.

Storm Fury picks up not too long after The Dark Elements series finishes but follows Zayne and Trinity’s story. Trinity can see and communicate with ghosts and spirits. Her special gift has kept her fiercely protected in an isolated compound hiding amongst the Wardens. The Wardens are shape-shifting gargoyles that protect humans from demons. If the demons knew about Trinity, they’d consume her to increase their powers. When Zayne and his clan arrive from D.C. to share disturbing reports demons and Wardens killings, and now Trinity’s safe spot has been turned upside down.

I just can’t get enough of all of JLA’s amazing characters. I mean, who ever imagined that gargoyles would be sexy? Then in walked Zayne in the Dark Element series and suddenly I’ve found a whole new shapeshifter to obsess over. I am so excited to read more about Zayne and Trinity’s story in The Harbinger series. Trinity is exactly the kind of kick-ass heroine I have come to expect from JLA! She’s fierce, strong, and loyal. Now, Zayne is such a fantastic character and totally swoon worthy, and honestly, I could continue to gush about him for the rest of this review, but that might be overkill.

All in all, a solid 5-STAR read for Jennifer L. Armentrout’s Storm Fury (The Harbinger #1). I can’t wait to get my hands on the next installment, and I’ll be attempting to patiently wait for it.

JENNIFER L. ARMENTROUT is the #1 international and #1 New York Times bestselling author of over 40 books, including the Wait for You, Lux series, the Dark Elements series, and Til Death. She is published with Tor, HarperCollins Avon and William Morrow, Entangled Teen and Brazen, Disney/Hyperion, Harlequin Teen and writes steamy and fun New Adult and Adult romance under the pen name J. Lynn. Jennifer is also the founder of Apollycon, a yearly reader event that brings in over 1400 readers and authors together each year. She currently lives in West Virginia with her husband and two dogs, Loki and Diesel.

Connect with Jennifer

Facebook  ~  Twitter  ~  Instagram  ~  Website  ~  Goodreads

Reviewers on the Wicked Reads Review Team were provided a free copy of Storm and Fury (Harbinger #1) by Jennifer L. Armentrout to read and review.

Tuesday, June 4, 2019

Breakout by A.M. Rose

Six days.

That’s the amount of time until Lezah’s execution.

She’ll die never knowing what got her locked up in that godforsaken prison in the first place. Her only chance of survival is to escape. Except the monitoring bracelet that digs into her wrist, the roaming AI, and the implant in her neck make freedom close to impossible.

Her best chance is to team up with the four other inmates who are determined to break out, even if one of them is beyond gorgeous annoying—oh, and in for murder. But he has a secret of his own. One that could break Lezah if she finds out, but could also set him free.

Figuring out how to work with him and the rest of this mismatched group of criminals is the only way Lezah will survive to see the outside world again.

But nothing in this prison is as it seems. And no one.

Add to Goodreads –

Buy Links

Amazon US  ~  Amazon UK  ~  Amazon Au  ~  Amazon Ca
B&N  ~  Google Play  ~  iTunes  ~  Kobo
Entangled Publishing

Reviews by the Wicked Reads Review Team

A.M. Rose is a new-to-me author, and I'm curious to read more in the future. Breakout is not listed as the debut in a series, however, I hope there is more to come to answer many threads left untied.

Breakout starts with some confusion, because the narrator doesn't know where she is, why she's there, how she got there, with a large portion of her recent memory blank. Held prisoner, the world-building is futuristic, science fiction, a dystopian vibe.

Lezah is confined in a facility, and she has no idea why, only a countdown timer on her bracelet, counting down to what she assumes is her end. With only three days left, Lezah finds a way to attempt escape, along the way picking up four others.

Rapid pacing, nonstop action, Breakout has a Maze Runner and Hunger Games vibe, mixed with a sense of virtual reality of a live-action video game. There was an addictive, page-turner need for answers, which had me on the edge of my seat, but those answers were given as if the reader should just understand/know what the narrator does without it being on the pages.

Along the escape journey, Lezah's memory returns slowly, as she fits the pieces as to how she came to be imprisoned with these specific people. The returned memories are as murky once returned as they were when Lezah struggled to remember – piecemeal, barely fitting anything together.

While I feverishly read the novel, needing to know what happened next, I wanted answers to many questions. It felt as if plots didn't quite fit together, as Lezah rushed along, taking the reader on the journey with her.

At the end of the novel, I'm still not quite sure why everything that happened happened, with a quick resolution that was too easy. The easiest resolution I've ever read, to be honest. There needs to be a sequel to offer a real resolution/explanation. Lezah jumped from A, automatically assuming Q was the answer to whatever question was posed, yet the reader had no idea what B through P were to get to that Q conclusion.

While the pacing was rapid, which kept me engaged and entertained, it was at the detriment of the world-building, character building, and the who/what/where/why/how/when. Reminding me of a plot outline, where the writer is to fill in the gaps to enrich the experience.

With all that being said, I enjoyed the novel, definitely recommend to those who love this genre, and am looking forward to more from this author in the future.

Young Adult age-range: 12+, including profanity, kissing, and mild science fiction violence.

Breakout was an exciting, young adult, sci-fi read! My attention was grabbed from the beginning. We follow a young lady, imprisoned with no memory of committing a crime. Fear gripped me, but I had to know what was going on. This future world is a strange place, where computers walk amongst men and fear dominates all.

When Lezah and her cellmate agree that they need to breakout before their death-date of four days and one day respectively, I was totally on-board. The insanity that follows is best left unsaid, so you get the full impact!

So many questions arise with no resolution. Lezah doesn't really know who she is, she only remembers bits and pieces of her family. Her rag-tag group of escapees all have their own lives, but they seem to remember things. Are these people trustworthy? Are they good guys or bad?

I just couldn't put this down, I was on the edge of my seat throughout the story, and hope there will be a book two. I enjoyed the ending, but there are still questions that need answers. I will be adding A.M. Rose to my list of authors to read!

A.M. Rose holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Communication from San Diego State University, is a member of SCBWI, RWA, NJWR and YARWA. She participates in several writing groups and is co-founder of All Write by Us, an online YA writing/critique group.

Connect with A.M.

Facebook  ~  Twitter  ~  Website  ~  Goodreads

Reviewers on the Wicked Reads Review Team were provided a free copy of Breakout by A.M. Rose to read and review.

Tuesday, May 21, 2019

Kingsbane by Claire Legrand

In this sequel to the instant New York Times bestseller Furyborn!

Two queens, separated by a thousand years, connected by secrets and lies, must continue their fight amid deadly plots and unthinkable betrayals that will test their strength—and their hearts.

Rielle Dardenne has been anointed Sun Queen, but her trials are far from over. The Gate keeping the angels at bay is falling. To repair it, Rielle must collect the seven hidden castings of the saints. Meanwhile, to help her prince and love Audric protect Celdaria, Rielle must spy on the angel Corien—but his promises of freedom and power may prove too tempting to resist.

Centuries later, Eliana Ferracora grapples with her new reality: She is the Sun Queen, humanity's long-awaited savior. But fear of corruption—fear of becoming another Rielle—keeps Eliana's power dangerous and unpredictable. Hunted by all, racing against time to save her dying friend Navi, Eliana must decide how to wear a crown she never wanted—by embracing her mother's power, or rejecting it forever.

Add to Goodreads –

Book 2
Buy Links

Amazon US  ~  Amazon UK  ~  Amazon Au  ~  Amazon Ca
B&N  ~  Google Play  ~  Kobo

Reviews by the Wicked Reads Review Team

I'm not going to lie, I was like a kid at Christmas when Kingsbane showed up on my Kindle! The Empirium series has totally taken me by surprise and I'm completely impressed by the story Claire Legrand has woven. The second book in the series has picked up where Furyborn left off. War is coming... The Emperor is coming!

We continue to follow the life and events of two women, connected by some circumstances. Only one can be the Sun Queen while the other the Blood Queen. By this book we know who is who, but we don't know WHY or HOW they choose their paths. Wonder no more...

Did I mention this is such a difficult review to write? I refuse to spoil anything, but I will say I am emotionally invested in all of these characters – the good, the bad, the ugly. Every single one of them have worked their way into my head. I am exhilarated yet anxious to find out what happens. Even though I know the general ending, I need to see how everything plays out. What exactly is victory? Who can possibly say they won?


Also Available in the Empirium Series

Book 1
Buy Links

Amazon US  ~  Amazon UK  ~  Amazon Au  ~  Amazon Ca
B&N  ~  Google Play  ~  iTunes  ~  Kobo

For reviews & more info, check out our Furyborn post.

Claire Legrand used to be a musician until she realized she couldn’t stop thinking about the stories in her head. Now she is a writer and librarian living in central New Jersey (although her heart will always live in her home state of Texas).

Her first novel is The Cavendish Home for Boys and Girls, one of the New York Public Library’s 100 Titles for Reading and Sharing in 2012. She is also the author of The Year of Shadows, a ghost story for middle grade readers; and Winterspell, a young adult re-telling of The Nutcracker. Some Kind of Happiness, her middle grade novel about mental illness, family secrets, and the power of storytelling, is a 2017 Edgar Award Nominee. Claire’s latest novel, Foxheart, is a classic fantasy-adventure and a 2016 Junior Library Guild selection. She is one of the four authors behind The Cabinet of Curiosities, an anthology of dark middle grade short fiction that was a Junior Library Guild selection, a Bank Street Best Book, and among the New York Public Library’s 100 Titles for Reading and Sharing in 2014.

Connect with Claire

Twitter  ~  Instagram  ~  Website  ~  Goodreads

Reviewers on the Wicked Reads Review Team were provided a free copy of Kingsbane (Empirium #2) by Claire Legrand to read and review.