C.H.B. ARC Reviews: “The Scarlet Tanager (The Annika Brisby Series B.3)” By: Emigh Cannaday

C.H.B. ARC Reviews: “The Scarlet Tanager (The Annika Brisby Series B.3)” By: Emigh Cannaday

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Available: Amazon

**Disclaimer: I received a free ARC copy of the book from the author in exchange for a 100% honest review. This does not affect my review whatsoever.**

Oh…my…gosh…

Here I thought the cliffhanger from the previous book left me on edge, begging for more. This one sent me even more into a frenzy. The whole growth of the characters, compared to the first story, is phenominal. My only negative is that I wish I could have seen Talvi’s growth more in this book. I adore Talvi. He’s that bad boy who you wish could transform into that knight in shining armor but his past, both people and actions, prove its next to impossible. However, he tears those pre-desposed notions to shreds and proves he can be that knight.

514X2miSruL._SX331_BO1,204,203,200_In the last book, The Silver Thread, I watched  him and Annika’s relationship catch fire and burn then rise up from the ashes like a Phoenix. In this one, however, the book mainly focuses on Finn’s demotion of being the “good” brother to being the “evil” brother. I wished I had the ability to leap into the book just to throttle him! And Yuri? I still believe she manipulated Annika’s thoughts into her turning to Finn. Between Yuri’s deception vs. Finn’s deception, though, I have to say Finn was worse. On the other hand, I’d like to argue it was Yuri’s fault by sticking her spoiled nose where it didn’t belong in the first place.

On a side note, Hilda. I am absolutely thrilled for her current situation! After Finn’s used her after all these years then dropping her, it completely appalled me. He didn’t even think of her at all.

We can compare Hilda and Finn reactions to the people they loved being taken away or leaving side-by-side, and clearly Hilda has surpassed Finn. She picked up the pieces and I applaud how her storyline is continuing along with her decisions!

This book was completely worth the wait! I want more details on Talvi’s growth in the next book, for sure. For the ending, I sincerely hope it is not true. I could not bear it to be! I guess we’ll have to wait and see.

If you’d like to join me on Twitter or my Facebook page in discussing this series, you can obtain the copy of the first book here.

Don’t forget to “Like” the Facebook page or Follow me on Twitter!

 

Happy Reading!

~C.C.

C.H.B. Reviews: The Night Huntress Series By Jeanine Frost

C.H.B. Reviews: The Night Huntress Series By Jeanine Frost

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As far as favorite series goes, The Night Huntress Series by Jeanine Frost is pretty high on my list. It hits all of the Charms my blog stands for. It has memorable characters some of which will make you fall in love with them the moment they speak; durability which has expand into a spin-off series, a few short stories, and two side books in between this series ; true #relationshipgoals any woman could want; and much more.

The series’s main character is a half-vampire, half-human hybrid named Catherine Crawfield. Raised on the notion that all vampires are evil due to her mother being impregnated by one fresh out of the grave, twenty-two year old Catherine puts her life on the line by going to bars in order to lure vampires to their impending second death aka dust. One night, while on her usual “hunting” route, she is cornered by a master vampire named Bones. He begins to teach her how to truly understand the monster’s she’s facing, including her own. This picture is my favorite quote from the first book and I have to share. This is how a half-vampire, half-fuman hybrid first learned how to kill vampires.

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Ah, the power of books. I first read these when I was eighteen and they immediately hooked me to the point where I’ve read these four times and now listening to the audiobook adaptions. No matter how many times I’ve gone through these books, they never get old.

The first book Halfway to the Grave is off the charts, it kidnaps you, drags you all the way to Cat’s family cherry farm, whisks you away on vampire killing missions, then in the best way possible-leaves you wondering what happened and endlessly searching for the next book in line.

 

The second book, One Foot In the Grave, I have repeatedly clutched the book, thinking “Be still my heart.” You’ll tear up in happiness following the events of the first book. You’ll laugh your head off from the quips thrown between Bones and Cat along with old characters from the previous novel. The sequel opens more doors leading to the spin-offs and future sequels. But I will say that you’ll need to read the spin-offs at the same time in order to keep track of what is going on in the whole universe and timeline.

Night Huntress Reading Order

HALFWAY TO THE GRAVE

ONE FOOT IN THE GRAVE

AT GRAVE’S END

DESTINED FOR AN EARLY GRAVE

FIRST DROP OF CRIMSON

ETERNAL KISS OF DARKNESS

THIS SIDE OF THE GRAVE

ONE GRAVE AT A TIME

ONCE BURNED

TWICE TEMPTED

UP FROM THE GRAVE

BOUND BY FLAMES

 

I will always recommend this series to anyone who is looking for a new paranormal romance series. It’ll give you everything you ever wanted and more!

 

My Rating: 9 out of 10 Book Charms

Happy Reading!

~C.C.

Charmed Haven Book Reviews: Evernight By: Claudia Gray

Charmed Haven Book Reviews: Evernight By: Claudia Gray

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So, it may seem that my past two months have been consumed by vampires. I don’t know what it is about this month. I think it’s because my surroundings have vastly changed in the short span of three weeks. New job, new schedule, and my brain wants to regress back to vampires.

I’ve read many reviews on Evernight. I saw quite a bit of positives more than negatives but for me, I have a high expectation for this monster. Blame it on me belonging to the generation who read Twilight by Stephanie Meyer. If you’ve read my last few posts on vampire books, you’ll see how high it is. With Stephen King, vampires are represented as the true masters of darkness who hide in the shadows and strike when you least expect it. In Stake That!you see vampires being romanticized and also feared but controlled at the same time. With Katie MacAlister,  it’s all romanticism and the true monsters are seeming to be the humans who prey upon the innocent. Evernight, well, I can at least sum it up in one word: Messy.

It’s books like these that I’m always afraid of opening up about because there is a huge fan base with this series.But I can’t keep silent. From the beginning towards the middle, the story felt like it did not know what it wanted to be. Was it a story about a girl having trouble fitting in at an ancient-feeling prep school, a girl trying to fit into a school where there are vampires hidden in the shadows, or is it about a girl who the boy she’s clearly obsessed with a vampire and she’s going to go through the Twilight motions of “I’m not afraid” cliche.

The main character, Bianca, drove me crazy with her obsession with Lucas. Yeah, he’s the first student/guy you meet at school, big deal. That does not mean you have to be constantly fantasizing or thinking about him. It’s super creepy. I know how teenagers can be but this girl is borderline-stalker Bella Swan. No Bueno!

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The story is centered around this girl whose parents recently accepted employment with the remote Evernight Academy. Students range from “wealthy” families, clueless/weird individuals, and scholarship students who were basically normal people who were lucky to have the chance to get into the school. Bianca claimed to be an outsider which we later find out in the middle of the book that this is certainly not the case.

I don’t want to say the book was misleading but it was misleading. Aka, mess city. And her and Lucas are not what I call star-crossed lovers. They are merely two people on opposite sides who, if they really wanted too, could change their situation in one bite….see what I did there?

I just started the second book and so far, it’s actually a lot better than this one. It’s more organized, fresh, and mysterious. This one should be re-written and Bianca cleaned up. Although those of you who may be fans of this, I have to give it a low rating. When a girl annoys me too the point where I hate my imagination’s voice and image it conjures up for her, it’s bad. Now, Raquel I like. Raquel needs her own story as far as I’m concerned at this point.

4 1/2 out of 10 Book Charms

Am I the only one who feels this way toward this book? Let’s be honest. If you love this book, what was the plus points that made you like it?

Happy Reading,

~C.C.

Charmed Book Haven Reviews: “A Girl’s Guide To Vampires” By Katie MacAlister

Charmed Book Haven Reviews: “A Girl’s Guide To Vampires” By Katie MacAlister

20160409_143924This book has haunted my shelf for a good ten years. My mom went through this Avon Vampire Book kick around then and tried to get me to read them. Although I didn’t fully enjoy them then, there are some series that aren’t all too mushy and ridiculous like other predecessors. Author Katie MacAlister is either a Hit or a Miss, with her vampire books. She also writes about dragons in her more popular series like The Aisling Grey Series, Silver Dragons, Light Dragons, and Dragon Falls.

“A Girl’s Guide To Vampires”, is the first book in her Dark Ones series which spans over ten books, a few straggling side books, and three novellas. Sounds like a bit of work, huh? Well, after inheriting these books from my mom’s shelf, I thought I’d take a gander at what these were all about.

The first book is about these two young women, Joy and Roxy, who are tired of the same-old and travel overseas to the Czech Republic in order to explore the mysterious sights explained in their favorite Dark Secret series. It’s basically stories, much like this one, that is all about vampires called “Dark Ones” who find their love mate, go through a ritual, and they live happily ever after. Roxy insists Joy will find her own “Dark One” after a psychic friend of theirs predicted Joy’s future mate would be around the area.

Roxy is one of those characters who needs to learn when to keep her mouth shut, learn how to be a true friend and not sell out your friend, and stop pushing said friend when they want to relax and enjoy the scenery. And don’t get me started on Joyful, yes her full name is Joyful. She has the personalities, at times the brains, but she needs to stop describing her “lady parts” as inner cheerleaders…..exactly what I thought.

Now the author is fickle with her language, especially in this one. She doesn’t use any course language and instead replaces them with awkward words and phrases. One example is her over-usage for the replacement word “poop”. Not going sugar coat it, it annoyed me at times because the main characters are supposed to be around twenty-five. I’m twenty-three and although I don’t use course language, I would not say what these women said. because it was utterly ridiculous. Also, Joy reminded me a little of Stephanie Meyer in her use of huge vocabulary words when they aren’t necessary. They transformed what could have been short, hilarious moments into dragging, “roll-your-eyes” scenes.

This book has it’s ups and downs and I finished it in two days. I mean the story holds up, but it needed to be filtered (aka cheerleaders and poop). This is one of those guilty pleasure books you read when you’re tired of jumping from book to book and in need of a story you can breeze through with no problems. If you are in a need for one of those, you can click here to receive your own copy for only $1.99!

 

If you’d also like to hear a pod-cast behind-the-scenes listen about the book, click here.

7 out of 10 Book Charms!

Happy Reading!

~C.C.

 

Charmed Haven Book Reviews “Stake That!” By: Mari Mancusi

Charmed Haven Book Reviews “Stake That!” By: Mari Mancusi

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If many of you were teens back in 2004-2011, you’ll remember the vampire craze. Aside from the obvious Twilight series, other authors took up the challenge to write their own vampire-themed series. Different talented authors, who were around before the Twilight series came on the scene, finally received their time during this time period. Stake That! by Mari Mancusi, was not one of those novels.

As a sequel to Boys That Bite, you didn’t need to read the previous novel in order to understand what was going on in this world. The language, the lack of evolved social technology, and the clothes made me think I was a teenager again. I’ve read previous reviews on this series and they aren’t positive compared to it’s initial release. Understandable, in a way, because teenagers today on a whole different level than when I was one.

To be honest, sometimes teenagers (at least the teenagers around my location) make me feel like this:image

However, I will point out, that this book has more “likes” in between sentences than the majority of teens these days. I had to skip through a bunch of the dialogue because they were loaded with this word. I am afraid almost 45% of the book is made up of it. Makes sense as to why I only read in a few hours….

The story is based around identical twins Sunny and Rayne McDonald. Rayne, a goth vampire obsessed 16-year-old, tells her elaborate story through her blog (go figure). She recaps over the events of the first novel about her sister Sunny being mistaken for Rayne and is accidentally bitten by the vampire who was originally going to be her “blood mate”. Blood mates are the equivalent’s to a soul mate only in this series, vampires have zero souls, go through elaborate DNA tests in order to make sure the mates are compatible, and there is a waiting list on getting a blood mate. Long story short, Sunny is now back to being human (complicated) and Rayne has now been officially named the new “Chosen One” vampire slayer.

The whole ground work of the book is through Rayne’s blog. She also adds various I’M chat conversations from her World of Warcraft game, AOL I’M, and short texts. Ah, the life before all of this was scrunched up into text messages and game I’M conversations became spoken through head sets. Told you, it’s a time warp.

If you get passed the language and annoying vampire test cliche’s, this is actually a decent novel. I am going to attempt to track down the first and third novel to try to get into the story more. Other than that, I’d recommend if you try to read this to remind yourself that this was ten years ago. Wow, this was ten years ago….being twenty-three and saying that is making me feel sort of old.

5.5 out of 10 Book Charms! It was the “likes” and cliches that killed it.

If anyone else read this back then or even recently, let’s discuss it! Tell me what you thought of it or if you’re thinking about trying to read it in the comments below.

Happy Reading!

~C.C.

Charmed Book Haven Reviews: “Alice In Zombieland” By: Gena Showalter

Charmed Book Haven Reviews: “Alice In Zombieland” By: Gena Showalter

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Down into the proverbial rabbit hole, so to speak. I wonder what Alice in Wonderland fans are called? Wonderlanders? Mad Hatters? Seriously, whatever they are called, I am one of them! I grew up watching Disney and Hallmark’s film adaptions of Lewis Caroll’s psychidelic yet ageless classic of the little girl who chased the white rabbit into a world where the opposite was accepted as truth and the absurd became reality.

I’ve often wondered what it would be like for Alice’s world to be transformed into a horror tale of sorts. Around 2012, author Gena Showalter took on this challenge to the Young Adult crowd with Alice in Zombieland. I recently finished the third book last month but I could not help but write a review on the first book today.

The story is focused on the life of Alice Bell who lives with her alcoholic father, somewhat sad mother, and lovable, quite imaginative little sister Emma. Her family. though, is not what you’d call “normal”. Her and her little sister were never allowed to go out after dark which resulted in them barely having any friends. Her little sister loved to dance and had an upcoming dance recital she longed to attend. However, her father’s rules stood that they must not attend anything after dark.

Why? Why is Mr. Bell so strict? Zombies, were the answer. Only, these zombies were not the run of the mill type of zombies. These ones could only bee seen by certain people, including her father. Alice thinks her father is crazy despite her never seeing them and their house being reinforced in order to “protect” them. On the night of her 16th birthday, she wins her family over in order for them to attend her sister’s recital since it was after all Alice’s birthday. 

Upon leaving the recital, her father freaks out and loses control of the car, crashing it. Her mother, father, and Emma die. The problem, on the other hand, is that Alice watched her mother get killed by these zombies who suddenly appeared in her sight. Not long after, she wakes up in the hospital to be welcomed by Kat (like Cheshire Kat) a current patient there. Long story short, she begins to live with her grandparents, go to a new school, and becomes friends with Kat and her group.

Her first day of school, though, she meets Cole Holland. As soon as they lock eyes, she’s transported into a vision of sorts where her and Cole are together. You can guess what happens later on when it comes to this. 

The story is very creative with the characters and how it all laid out. It had draggy predictable parts but overall a decent read. 8 1/2 out of 10 Book Charms. The rest of the series is worth the read. I still need to read the final installment, though.

What are your thoughts on this book? On the series? Let me know in the comments!

Happy Reading!

~C.C.

 

Charmed Book Reviews:”Stolen” By: Kelley Armstrong

Charmed Book Reviews:”Stolen” By: Kelley Armstrong

Charmed Haven Book Reviews Journey Into The Otherworld Series…..

 

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And so it continues….It’s been almost over a year since I touched base on The Otherworld Series by Canadian author Kelley Armstrong. I have traveled a long, rocky road paved by books I’d rather would not have read and those I’ve quite enjoyed. All of them, though, have eventually led me to get back to here. Before you continue, if you need to catch up with the info on the first book, Bittenyou can find my original review here.

I took a break after reading the fourth book, Industrial Magic, to read another series. I still feel bad I didn’t continue but that stops now! (After I’m finished reading the three books I’m still reading. The life of a book addict is no joke) This series is like that best friend you can not talk to for the longest time then all of a sudden you pick it right back up and it was as if you didn’t stop talking. So far, Stolen is my favorite out of the series.

Author Kelley Armstrong uses this novel as a bridge for future supernatural characters to rise up out from the background to introduce themselves to readers. The downside is that they did not reveal themselves without a fight. We meet back up with Elena Michaels, the world’s only female werewolf, along with her pack, in search for an individual who allegedly spotted a werewolf. For the werewolf community, once a human sees them transform or gather evidence of their existence, it is Elena’s job to seek them out and murder them. She travels to Pennsylvania to discover not a human, but a young witch named Paige Winterbourne. Paige admits her deception in order to lure Elena out to inform her not only of other supernatural’s existence but to alert her along with her pack of danger.

Despite her disbelief, Elena and her pack leader  Jeremy meet up with a variety of other creatures including a half-demon, a vampire, and another witch. I remember when I first read this, how Elena and I were on the same line of humor. Imagine a book club who was really a bunch of supernatural creatures meeting one another in secret. Only, it’s actually happening. Anyways, it’s revealed that a millionaire Tyrone Winsloe is kidnapping a variety of supernaturals, testing them, then (possibly) killing them.

laura-vandervoortElena does not know what to believe till after the meeting, Elena and the others are almost kidnapped by military trained soldiers but are able to escape. Long story short, Elena ends up kidnapped after having a car race against her lover, Clay. She is whisked away into an unknown location inside a massive compound where she’s placed under massive tests on her lycanthrope abilities. She soon discovers a young half-demon, half-witch child named Savannah Levine is being used in order for them to discover the variety and range of her undiscovered powers.

This whole novel is a topsy-turvey suspenseful piece of literature. I could NOT put it down. At the time I read it, I was still in college and any time I had to pause to do a class project, I longed to pick it back up. The romantic element between Elena and Clay prove yet again that no matter how far away from each other, they will always fight to get back to one another. The emotional levels are extremely high throughout this book not only involving them but the characters that die (will NOT spoil). However even though I hated certain characters dying, these events needed to happen. They pave the way for the story to continue from Elena’s story to Paige Winterbourne’s story in the next book.

 

“I wanted to tell him everything would be okay. And I wanted him to tell me the same thing. I didn’t care if it was true or not-I just wanted to say it, to hear it, to feel his arms around me, hear the rumble of his words, that deep chuckle that made my pulse race.”                      

                                                        –Stolen, Kelley Armstrong

 

10 out 0f 10 Book Charms, all the way. I’m going to catch up with this series reviews, I will. I apologize for being behind on them. With a world filled with books, it’s hard to keep track sometimes.

If you are a fan of this series or even the Canadian television show adaption, Bitten, let’s discuss it!

Who is your favorite character in the book or television show? Paige, Elena, Clay, Jeremy?

Are you sad the show is ending?

Which one of the books is your favorite?

 

Happy Reading!

~C.C.

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