Monday, April 21, 2014

Excerpt + Giveaway: RecruitZ by Karice Bolton Blog Tour

RecruitZ by Karice Bolton
Afterworld #1
Publication date: December 27th 2013
Genres: New Adult, Post-Apocalyptic

Scientists are the new rock stars. The infection has been contained for nearly three months, and the world is celebrating. But humans are still dying. Rebekah Taylor has seen it firsthand. Her husband was killed right in front of her by the very creatures that humans were told they no longer had to fear.

Rebekah is determined to find out who is responsible for the death of her husband and the obvious cover-up. Fueled with revenge, she begins to find answers that lead to one frightening conclusion. The apocalypse might be over, but the battles are just beginning.

Goodreads | Amazon | Barnes and Noble | Book Depository | Kobo

Karice Bolton
About the Author

Karice Bolton lives in the Pacific Northwest and is a writer of Young Adult and New Adult books. She loves to read anything and everything. She also enjoys baking, skiing, and spending time with her wonderful husband and two English bulldogs.

(CYP: I'm a BIG fan of bulldogs!! Especially French bulls and other flat faces like pugs. :D)

Connect with Karice: Author Website | Goodreads | Facebook | Twitter

Other works:

(Covers lead to Goodreads) 

I gripped the console as I watched the twitches and spasms of the zombies’ movements closing in on us. They were everywhere…the grass, the sidewalk, the driveway. There was no mistaking the rotting, grey flesh that exposed the muscle and bone of the undead. They were something I’d run from countless times, but this time we had nowhere to run. The undead had us trapped. They would rip us to shreds in an instant.

“I think some of ‘em are new,” I said, turning my attention back to Gavin.

There were some clean-looking zombies staggering toward us, their flesh mostly intact. That made no sense. The outbreak had been contained for months. There should be no freshly infected roaming around. Everyone had been vaccinated. The only stragglers evading capture had been around awhile, so their bodies were beat up badly by the time they were caught. Not these.

“Let’s hope not,” he murmured, not bothering to look out the window to confirm nor deny my suspicions.

“We can’t run. They’d totally get us before we got away,” I said, hoping he’d correct me, tell me that we had a chance.

He didn’t.

He slammed his fist into the steering wheel and looked over at me. When the outbreak happened, we never looked back. We were always on the move, running from the disease that took our families and friends. That was the key to survival. Never stay in one place. Always stay on the move. Now we had nowhere to move. I glanced over at Gavin and saw the fear in his eyes. Even with everything we’d encountered, his eyes had never held this amount of terror.

“Babe, whatever happens…”

“Knock it off,” I said.

“We have nothing to fight them with, and a horde this size needs a distraction.”

“Don’t you dare,” I hissed, shaking my head. The fear was pulsing through me at an unstoppable rate. “We didn’t live through the outbreak to die now.”

There's a tour wide giveaway going on for an Amazon Gift Card of $50! Giveaway is international.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

By the way, if you're looking for more giveaways by Karice, she holds many, many giveaways on her website's blog. So if you follow her newsletter (I do :), you'll get notified whenever she decides to hold one.

Anyway, thank you for visiting! To view the tour's master calender, visit Xpresso Book Tours.

Monday, April 14, 2014

So I (finally) Watched Divergent...


AWESOME. I meant awesome.

Let me just say that the casting this time was even better than (wait for it) Twilight, Beautiful Creatures, and yes, even Hunger Games (not that I'm an advocate for anorexia, and it's not that I expected a boner haha, ops visible-bone-kind-of-skinny girl. I just needed someone less...voluptuous) and I'm thinking even Fifty Shades. Though I will not get into my grievances with Fifty's casting now.

Maybe some other time. Soon... Oh wellzie.

Anyway, YES, I thought Tris/Shailene would be just another Young Adult (YA) Dystopian heroine with the ass-kicking, very Katniss Everdeen but with more romance (yes, I've been privy to all the Four-gush fests). But she wasn't. I felt that the fact that Tris being born into Abnegation made her a whole lot more relatable than other YA heroines of the same genre. Let me explain this.

The Katniss Category of YA heroines -- which includes characters like Katsa from Graceling by Kristin Cashore, Defy by Sara B. Larson, and Rose from the Vampire Academy series -- are trained to hunt and fight, to be on survival mode since they were little. And they're good at it. It's a thrill to read about them and for just a fraction of time, imagine ourselves possessing agile, knive-wielding hands, nimble feet and warrior bearings. On the other hand we have the Tris Category of YA heroines -- think Elisa from the Fire and Thorns series by Rae Carson, Meghan from The Iron Fey series by Julie Kagawa and Alice Bell from the White Rabbit Chronicles by Zena Showalter. They are born like us. They are down-to-earth, calculus-learning, normal humans who lead normal human lives till they are forced into a situation where they have to pick up their big-girl, army-prints panties. They react the way you or I will react, and they think along the same tracks as us. That's their main attraction point, and I think it grabs our attention subtly. At least, this is why I loved Tris so much. This, and her unflinching loyalty, her guts, smarts, wits, and just about every aspect of her.

~Four to Tris

Then there's Four/Theo James the man himself. I mean, wow, where do I start!

Found this at Epic Reads

He's so cool, so sweet, so badass, and he's not too perfect either. But that just enhanced his sexiness, so. I WANT A FOUR TOO. BOO.

The only thing that I thought could've been made more convincing was Tris' fears. Some were valid, but some were just...weak? I mean, what most people fear, I believe, isn't what can kill us. Or at least kill us quick. It's either something caused by a past trauma, or pain, or something that will make us lose some precious marbles. For me, lock me in a room with a ghost and seriously, I don't think I would make it out of the room quite the same --or alive-- anymore. (Fuck that is one scary-shit image)

Other than that, I loved the movie. Everything flowed smoothly and for someone who didn't read the book, it was pretty dang amazing and understandable. Unlike City of Bones, Percy Jackson 1 and 2, and and Harry Potter, Deathly Hallows Parts I and II where large chunks of story had to be deleted or ALTERED (this should be punishable by law) and non-readers were left scrambling to their reader friends to ask what in Merlin's Pants is happening.

Back when HP was still understandable.

So anyway, I would rate this a 5/5 amazeball stars as a book reviewer, but in terms of movies, it's a 9.5/10 for me. The casting was spot-on, the directing was amazing, the action sequences and fight techniques were very unique and exciting, the plot was an on-the-edge-of-your-seat, breathless kind of exhilerating and the romance was PERFECT. It's the kind of romance I've been waiting for in a movie for all 19 years of my awesome teenage life. Heh.

I would definitely recommend this to fans of YA Dystopia. Or actually if you like YA and your romance to go with lots of action and a good save-the-day kind of story, DIVERGENT THE MOVIE is just the right tea for you.

My Rating

Publication Date: February 28th 2012
Watched Date: April 12th, 2014
Publisher: Katherine Tengen Books
Series: Divergent #1
My Rating: 5/5!!

Goodreads | Amazon | B&N | Book Depository | Author's Blog

Blurb from Goodreads:
In Beatrice Prior's dystopian Chicago world, society is divided into five factions, each dedicated to the cultivation of a particular virtue--Candor (the honest), Abnegation (the selfless), Dauntless (the brave), Amity (the peaceful), and Erudite (the intelligent). On an appointed day of every year, all sixteen-year-olds must select the faction to which they will devote the rest of their lives. For Beatrice, the decision is between staying with her family and being who she really is--she can't have both. So she makes a choice that surprises everyone, including herself.

During the highly competitive initiation that follows, Beatrice renames herself Tris and struggles alongside her fellow initiates to live out the choice they have made. Together they must undergo extreme physical tests of endurance and intense psychological simulations, some with devastating consequences. As initiation transforms them all, Tris must determine who her friends really are--and where, exactly, a romance with a sometimes fascinating, sometimes exasperating boy fits into the life she's chosen. But Tris also has a secret, one she's kept hidden from everyone because she's been warned it can mean death. And as she discovers unrest and growing conflict that threaten to unravel her seemingly perfect society, Tris also learns that her secret might help her save the ones she loves . . . or it might destroy her.

P.S. LOTS of news about Insurgent the movie on Veronica's blog! (1) It will be out March 20, 2015!! (2) There'll be a new director cause Neil Burger was working furiously on Divergent and they had to start filming right away. SOOOOO EXCITES.

P.P.S. I loved the movie so much I wanted to pick up Divergent and the series right away. But, being anxious me, I went to spoiler myself...about Allegiant's end... AND NO. I will not subject myself to that. So nope, I don't think I'll be picking this series up, though I'll definitely watch it through. (I'm FURIOUSLY HOPING that the screenwriters write a better ending. Though that will be unfaithful and I'd be shooting my own arse with the whole punishable by law thing, but I think this warrants an exception.)

P.P.P.S. Thanks for reading all the way!! Y'all deserve a big CYP virtual kiss. Hahaha, and lotsa chocolates and fruity champagne. Virtual, of course. ;)

Thursday, April 10, 2014

Dreaded DNFs (4)


Another round of crushed hopes and dreams and sad faces...

Haha kidding. K, so.

The Keep
By Veronica Wolff
The Watchers #4
Is it just me, or is the story getting more and more lacklustre? Drew is losing her kick, and her lovey-dovey-ing with Carden ain't what it once was. I mean, they're still awesome together, but I'm not feeling the heat. Maybe it's my weird reading mood lately. Anyone read this yet? Any comments?
Stopped at 14%.
Link to Goodreads

Prince of Shadows
By Rachel Caine
Blurb from Goodreads

A thrilling retelling of the star-crossed tale of Romeo and Juliet, from the New York Times bestselling author of the Morganville Vampires series.

In the Houses of Montague and Capulet, there is only one goal: power. The boys are born to fight and die for honor and—if they survive—marry for influence and money, not love. The girls are assets, to be spent wisely. Their wishes are of no import. Their fates are written on the day they are born.

Benvolio Montague, cousin to Romeo, knows all this. He expects to die for his cousin, for his house, but a spark of rebellion still lives inside him. At night, he is the Prince of Shadows, the greatest thief in Verona—and he risks all as he steals from House Capulet. In doing so, he sets eyes on convent-bound Rosaline, and a terrible curse begins that will claim the lives of many in Verona…

…And will rewrite all their fates, forever.

Stopped at 4% (haha, yeahh..)
Link to Goodreads
This was perhaps one of my most anticipated 2014 release after I read this excerpt of Benvolio meeting Rosaline! It was looking up until the pace sort of flattened out and...stayed there. The prose was also very Young-Adultish, too YA for a historical retelling. Well, at least for me. I'm going to put this down for awhile and maybe pick it up later. The literature girl in me disapproves but...a girl's gotta do what a girl's gotta do.

Bitter Sweet Love
By Jennifer L. Armentrout
Dark Elements #0.5
Blurb from Goodreads

In a sizzling prequel novella to her new series THE DARK ELEMENTS, #1 New York Times bestselling author Jennifer L. Armentrout draws readers into the extraordinary, irresistible world of Wardens and demons.
Dez wasn't just Jasmine's crush. A gargoyle Warden like Jas, he helped her come to terms with her destiny—fending off demons and maintaining balance between good and evil. He was her everything...right until the moment he disappeared without a trace. It didn't help that Jas's father had just announced that she and Dez would one day be mated. Hard not to take that personally.

And now he's back, three years older, ten times hotter, ready to pick up exactly where they left off. But Jas isn't taking that risk again. Dez has seven days to meet all her conditions and earn back her trust. Seven days filled with terrifying danger and sweet temptation. Seven days to win her heart—or shatter it all over again...

Stopped at 24%.
Link to Goodreads.
I swear to Mother Unicorn I loved WHITE HOT KISS (book 1 in series), but I'm not sure why I didn't click with Jasmine in BSL... Maybe cause the story focused more on the romance than a good ol' kicking villain ass arc. If you know me, you'd know that I don't like any form of contemporary romance (except maybe Fifty Shades. I'll always love Fifty no matter who he marries. :P Haha) But I just feel there's too little action to really amp up my excitement, so...

Remnants: Season of Wonder
By Lisa Tawn Bergren
The Remnants #1
Blurb from Goodreads

In the first book of the new futuristic dystopian series from author Lisa T. Bergren, the chosen remnants must work to redirect humanity’s course.

The year is 2095. Gifted teens known as Remnants have been chosen and trained to act as humanity’s last hope to rectify the horrors that are now part of everyday life.

The Community has trained these teens as warriors and assigned them Knights of the Last Order as protectors. Together, they are a force that will be difficult to bring down.

But the Sons of Sheol, of course, are determined to do just that. As the Remnants begin their mission to course-correct humanity by saving and protecting key individuals, their enemies move to stop them, placing the entire world in peril.

Bestselling author Lisa T. Bergren presents the first book in her new YA futuristic dystopian series—The Remnants Novels—fitting in with the current dystopian trend in the marketplace.

Stopped at 6% (this is because the book is THICK)
Link to Goodreads.
I won an ARC of it from Lisa's site and I was actually pretty into Dystopian around then (mood reader syndromes) and was quite excited to pick Remnants up. But...even though I was aware that Ms Bergren was very into religion and her books almost always has Christianity infused in her books, it has never been quite so prominent. Every other page in the first few chapters talks about the Maker. Maker this, evil people that. Ohhhhh, the Maker has brought us together (and everyone was in this primeval cave). And being a free thinker (though I am agnostic), it really got to me in a bad way. A little bit is fine, like in her River of Time series, that was cool and daisies, but if rubbing it in my face in a preachy manner kind of turns me off. Yeah, gonna put this down for awhile.

By Donna Grant
Druid's Glen #6
I bought and picked this up on a whim. Yeahh, I have never read any Donna Grant book before, and I've never touched any Druid's Glen book before and I picked up book 6. It sounded good, and come on, everyone craves a little dragon romance a little once in awhile. And Miss Grant is a big name in PNR...but I didn't really like her writing style in DRAGONFYRE. Maybe it's because it was written in 2009 (or maybe even before that), but nah, the writing was a little...disjointed.

Stopped at 12%.
Link to Goodreads.

Wicked Winds
By Sharon Kay
Solsti Prophecy #1
Blurb from Goodreads


Born with the ability to command the wind, Nicole Bonham spends her life hiding her gift. Deciding to take control of her power, she dispenses her own brand of vigilante justice in Chicago’s worst neighborhoods. Stealth and surprise are always on her side.


Lash demon Gunnar prowls Earth and several supernatural realms to help maintain peace among the immortal species. His chance encounter with Nicole creates a hurricane of sparks between them, and he can’t let her out of his sight until he discovers her true identity. In his two hundred years, he has never seen a creature like her.


Nicole and Gunnar race to discover who - or what - is stabbing the city's most destitute residents and stealing their blood. The fire that forged their bond explodes into white-hot passion, weaving their souls together on an unexpected level. Haunted by the past, Gunnar's fiercely protective instincts battle with her need to defeat the creatures she was born to fight. As they track the mastermind behind the attacks, will Nicole’s unique talent unwittingly send her straight into his lair?

Stopped at 6%.
Link to Goodreads.
WICKED WINDS was another whim book. I arrived at my university admission interview 2 and a half hours early (YEAHH fml) cause I read the time wrongly so I was browsing through Goodreads and saw WICKED WAVES (book 2), so I went to search up on book 1. I've always LOVED elemental stories and movies (Go Katara!) so I picked this up even though I don't read self-published books all that often (I'm not against them, I'm just...wary). I think that the entire idea of vigilante justice is cool, but a couple of girls becoming experts in martial arts and Tae Kwan Do in what, 3 years? And TWO girls defeating THREE muggers twice their size? Nope, I'm not convinced. To top it off, Nicole sounded like ME. Maybe me a few years ago when I was in my early teens. And she's supposed to be 28 yo. So no, the YA/MG writing style isn't for me.

I've been pretty angsty lately and in a reading slump... I am eagerly awaiting for my order of Shinobi by Cole Gibsen, Siege and Storm by Leigh Bardugo and Oracle's Moon by Thea Harrison to come though! Hopefully those bestsellers will knock me out of this funk. :))

Any good finds or DNFs lately?

Book Discounts for Everyone!

I've recently discovered a few websites and online retailers for BOOKS and I think they're awesome and worth sharing. I'm only going to talk about 3 websites, 2 of which I've known for some time already, but still. So.

NoQ Store - This is the Singapore-based (FINALLY A SINGAPORE-BASED BOOK RETAILER) e-commerce arm of TIMES PUBLISHING.

In a good way. And the best part was, a representative from NoQ Store sent me an email to offer a $40 discount for me to buy books for review purposes and a 15% discount for all my readers for any purchases made at NoQ Store!!!!!

The thing about NoQ is that, it's like a friggin' Book Depository in Singapore for me, cause they price their books cheaper than the other MNC retailers in Singapore like Kinokuniya. For example, the price of a hardcover of Siege and Storm by Leigh Bardugo at Kinokuniya is $30 odd while NoQ price it at $18. AND, they offer free shipping within Singapore for orders above $25. Just like Amazon for Americans. AWAZINGBALLS right? (Yes, that was intentional.)

So, to enjoy this discount, you have to follow me via GFC, email, Blogloving, RSS, Facebook, Twitter... Hahaha, kidding. Just use the coupon code BOOKALICIOUS at the checkout section. (But I'd appreciate the follow. :) This coupon will last till July 31st, 2014.

Reader Giveaways - If you sign up for Reader Giveaways' newsletter, you'll get daily updates of free books and books priced at $0.99 every day. Plus, they hold many giveaways every month. Prizes include gift vouchers, kindles, y'know, awesome book stuff.

Free Book Friday - For those of you who haven't heard of FBF, it was founded by author Jessica Brody (of Unremembered), and it gives away approximately three books, ranging from YA to adult fiction, every Friday. It's pretty cool, and it gives away bestsellers too like Defy by Sara B. Larson and Fire and Flood by Victoria Scott, and some pretty awesome adult Historical Romances and PNRs, thrillers, y'know. Even though I haven't won anything so far, it's a pretty cool website that I think y'all would like to visit. :)


Anyway, I hope y'all have a super Thursday today and happy book shopping!

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Excerpt + Giveaway: Copper Girl by Jennifer Allis Provost Blog Tour

Copper Girl by Jennifer Allis Provost
The Copper Legacy #1
Genre: Urban Fantasy
Publisher: Spence City
Date of Publication: June 25, 2013


Sara had always been careful.

She never spoke of magic, never associated with those suspected of handling magic, never thought of magic, and never, ever, let anyone see her mark. After all, the last thing she wanted was to end up missing, like her father and brother.

Then, a silver elf pushed his way into Sara's dream, and her life became anything but ordinary.

Goodreads | Amazon | B&N | Book Depository

Jennifer Allis Provost
About the Author

Jennifer Allis Provost is a native New Englander who lives in a sprawling colonial along with her beautiful and precocious twins, a dog, two birds, three cats, and a wonderful husband who never forgets to buy ice cream. As a child, she read anything and everything she could get her hands on, including a set of encyclopedias, but fantasy was always her favorite. She spends her days drinking vast amounts of coffee, arguing with her computer, and avoiding any and all domestic behavior.

Connect with Jennifer: Author Website | BlogGoodreads | Facebook | Twitter

            Chapter 1
It seemed like a good idea at the time.
My office, like most modern offices, cranked the air conditioning down to Arctic proportions during the summer months. Consequently, we workers arrived in the morning dressed in sandals and sleeveless tops, donned heavy sweaters upon reaching our desks, and ended up shivering by noon. Ironically, when our workday ended we were hit by a wall of oppressive heat the moment we stepped outside the main doors. No, this wasn’t a flawed system in the slightest.
That day, I wasn’t having it. I had the grand idea of spending my lunch hour outside, away from the icy wind stiffening my fingers and chilling my neck. After I unwound myself from the afghan I kept in my desk (and only used in the summer months), I gathered up my lunch and my phone and headed out for an impromptu picnic in my car.
What I hadn’t considered was that the office runs the air conditioning so cold because it was, well, hot outside. Very hot, in fact. So hot that the cheese was melting in my sandwich and the lettuce looked like something that had washed ashore months, maybe even years, ago. I was parked in the shade and had taken down my car’s convertible top, but I still couldn’t manage to get comfortable. I’d already shed my sandals and cardigan, which left me wearing my sundress and…
Dare I?
I glanced around the parking lot of Real Estate Evaluation Services, the ‘go-to firm for all your commercial real estate needs’, according to the brochures. No one, human or drone, was taking a noontime stroll, and, by virtue of my being on the far side of the lot, no cars were near mine. Most of my coworkers didn’t even have cars, so the lot was rarely more than half-full. What was more, from where I sat, I couldn’t even see the office.
I dared.
I took a deep breath and channeled my inner wild woman, then leaned the seat back and slipped off my panties. Removing that small bit of cotton made an incredible difference, and the heat became somewhat bearable. Enjoyable, even. Was that a breeze?  

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

Obsidian Eyes by A.W. Exley Blog Tour: Excerpt + Giveaway

Obsidian Eyes by A.W. Exley
Published by: Curiosity Quills Press
Publication date: March 24th, 2014
Genres: Fantasy, Young Adult


1836, a world of light and dark, noble and guild. The two spheres intersect when seventeen-year-old Allie Donovan is placed at the aristocratic St Matthews Academy. More at ease with a blade than a needle, she finds herself ostracised by the girls and stalked by a Scottish lord intent on learning why she is among them.

She begins to suspect the underlying reasons when soldiers arrive to see her friend, Zeb, a mechanical genius. On the hunt for answers she breaks into his underground laboratory. There, Allie discovers he is not just constructing sentient mechanical creatures, he is building a devastating new weapon for the military.

The guilds want the weapon and Allie is trapped by ties of blood. She must obey the overlord of the guild and deliver up her friend, unless she can rely on bonds of friendship, to save both their lives.

GoodreadsAmazon | Barnes and Noble | Book Depository

A.W. Exley
About the Author

Books and writing have always been an enormous part of Anita’s life. She survived school by hiding out in the library, with several thousand fictional characters for company. At university, she overcame the boredom of studying accountancy by squeezing in Egyptology papers and learning to read hieroglyphics.

Today, Anita writes steampunk novels with a sexy edge and an Egyptian twist. She lives in rural New Zealand surrounded by an assortment of weird and wonderful equines, felines, canine and homicidal chickens.

Connect with Anita: Author's Website | Goodreads | Facebook | Twitter

     Allie's heart pounded; an echo of her footsteps on the hard slate floor of the hallway. As a guild child she learned to wield a knife like noble girls learned needlepoint. Swords and throwing stars were her pianoforte and deportment classes. Her sparring partners were often boys, so why did this particular one make her pulse run faster than a bolting horse?
     He had circled her with the easy grace of a dancer. His hair draped over his forehead, so black it bordered on blue, cut short on the nape but rangy in front, almost obscuring that pale grey gaze. Eyes so mesmerising she thought a wolf watched her. Pure predator looked out, assessing her weaknesses. Her skin burned under her tunic where his arms held her. The memory of his lips at her neck made a shiver pass down her body.
     A foolish reaction or worse, a deadly mistake.

Her mind whirled as she traced her path to the girls' dormitory. She flung open the door to the room she shared and pressed it shut behind her. With short, quick movements she stripped off her loose cotton pants and kimono top and threw herself on the bed clad in just her chemise and knickers.
    Lying back she stared at the ceiling. Her roommate, Eloise, had painted an intricate sky scape during her long internment at the school. A dark blue night-time sky with constellations painted in swirls of gold and silver stared back at her. The walls were a forest of climbing vines fit to conceal Sleeping Beauty. Eloise was a genius with her hands whether painting, sewing, or dissecting wild life.
    Allie gathered her thoughts and calmed her mind, before she dressed for class. The colours over her head reminded her of the harem, where the walls were decorated with tiles painted in azure blue, startling orange, deep green, and sunshine yellow. The brilliant mosaics were a hard contrast to the lush silken drapes and velvet floor cushions so large she used to curl up on one, like a kitten in a lap.
    "I wish you would stop killing my frogs!" The genius in question had stirred and risen from her bed only to find the lifeless amphibian on her desk.
   "Stop reanimating them and I wouldn't have to," Allie countered, rolling over on to her stomach. "And to be fair I don't kill them, I just disconnect them. How can you sleep with their limbs twitching and jerking? It woke me up again this morning."
There's a little Steampunk, a little High Fantasy, a bit of Victorian England, and a dash of YA Romance. Any takers yet? ;)

Tour-Wide Giveaway:
Google Chromecast, and 5x swag. Open to US and Canada only.

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Thank you for visiting! For the tour's master calender, go to THIS LINK.

Review: White Hot Kiss by Jennifer L. Armentrout

Publication Date: Febuary 25th, 2014
Finished Date: March 2nd, 2014
Publisher: Harlequin Teen
Format: eARC  
Series: The Dark Elements #1
My Rating: 4.5/5!

Goodreads | Amazon | B&N | Book Depository | Author's Website
Blurb from Goodreads:
One kiss could be the last.

Seventeen-year-old Layla just wants to be normal. But with a kiss that kills anything with a soul, she's anything but normal. Half demon, half gargoyle, Layla has abilities no one else possesses.

Raised among the Wardens—a race of gargoyles tasked with hunting demons and keeping humanity safe—Layla tries to fit in, but that means hiding her own dark side from those she loves the most. Especially Zayne, the swoon-worthy, incredibly gorgeous and completely off-limits Warden she's crushed on since forever.

Then she meets Roth—a tattooed, sinfully hot demon who claims to know all her secrets. Layla knows she should stay away, but she's not sure she wants to—especially when that whole no-kissing thing isn't an issue, considering Roth has no soul.

But when Layla discovers she's the reason for the violent demon uprising, trusting Roth could not only ruin her chances with Zayne…it could brand her a traitor to her family. Worse yet, it could become a one-way ticket to the end of the world.
My Review

I'll be frank - WHITE HOT KISS reads more like a fan fiction, with a more colloquial, YA style of writing. In fact, most of JLA's works have the same tone of voice - snarky, witty, and ultimately enjoyable, but with a healthy dash of YA colloquialism thrown in. For me, sometimes it works out, other times it can really turn me off big time. I wasn't a big fan of the later part of her COVENANT series, I discontinued the LUX series after ONYX...but I loved UNCHAINED (JLA's adult PNR series). Fortunately for me though, WHK read more like UNCHAINED, and I inhaled the book in two sittings.

There is a lot to gush about WHK, and the first thing, of course, is the GARGOYLES! They're wicked cool and they're almost like dragons...but darker. Edgier. And cuter. Haha! They sleep in stone-form for defense reasons cause their stone covering is literally impenetrable. By force or by fire. Wicked cool reimagining of gargoyles.

Then there is Roth. Zayne...not that much. Other than his awesome name, he ain't got nothing on Roth. Not only does Roth possess the standard requirements for a sexy YA/NA hero - y'know, the whole sometimes-brooding-sometimes-hilarious, mischievous but protective thing they've all got going on - but the sacrifices he makes and the things he does for our protagonist, Layla, places him on a whole new level. My respect for him grew like tenfold after the end, and is making me CRAY^2 waiting for STONE COLD TOUCH to see what happens to him. (He reminds of Robin "Puck" Goodfellow from THE IRON FEY series by Julie Kagawa.) And Layla and Zayne, of course. Heh.

There was a lot of teenage angst in WHK, both in high school and in the relationship department, but there were the other complexities of the Wardens and Demons that made WHK a more engaging read. It's not all black and white with the races. The Wardens might seem like the good guys, siding with the angel and ridding the world of pesky, trouble-making demons. But as Layla hang out with Roth more often, there are certain things that the Wardens ingrain into the younger Wardens and Layla aren't true.

Being half-demon, half-Warden, Layla has always longed to fit in. To be one of the good guys. To be able to shift and take to the skies. Too bad all she got from her mixed blood is to be able to distinguish demon from human/Warden, tag them, lighting them up for patrolling Wardens to kill, and that pesky soul-sucking kiss from to hell. At least this skill allows her to feel more useful in the battle against the demons and ridding the world of evil. But Roth is determined to open her eyes to reality, that not all demons are as bad as they seem.

Are the Wardens brainwashing their young to hate the demons? What if there are demons that aren't, well, evil and she's been helping the Wardens kill them? And where does that place her in the entire scheme of things?

Another reason why I like JLA's writing style is her way of revealing things, and building her worlds bit by bit, letting the plot progress while giving us nuggets of information along the way. It's a smooth world-building process, and the pace never gets compromised. There's no huge info-dumping when it comes to the history of the Wardens and demons. But I can feel the tension between the two factions and shown just a nugget of the why and their history.

Altogether a very enjoyable, pretty steamy (and angsty), fast-paced read with a minor cliffhanger ending. I'd recommend this to fans of THE IRON FEY series, UNCHAINED by J. Lynn (JLA), and THE GUARDIAN LEGACY series by Ednah Walters.

*Review copy courtesy of Harlequin Teen via Netgalley*

My Rating

Cyp's Abbreviation Dictionary

DNF = Did Not Finish
HEA = Happily Ever After
PNR = Paranormal Romance
UF = Urban Fantasy
YA = Young Adult

Erotica Reference

BDSM = Bondage/Discipline, Dominant/Submissive, Sadism/Masochism
f/f = female/female
m/f = male/female
m/m = male/male


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