C.H.B. ARC Review: Just One Look By Deb Julienne

C.H.B. ARC Review: Just One Look By Deb Julienne


Title: Just One Look
Series: Launching Love #1
Author: Deb Julienne
Published: September 20th, 2017
Available: Amazon
Add to Goodreads

*Disclaimer: I received an ARC copy via NetGalley and Kindred Ink Press LLC in exchange for an honest review. This does not effect my review whatsoever.*


On a secret mission for her entrepreneur father, Diana Tolliver (aka Diana Clay) finds herself unexpectedly alone on a singles cruise. She befriends another solo female passenger, and they play a game to make their would-be-boring cruise a bit more fun. Each woman must pick out a single male for the other to date for the duration of the cruise.

JJ Westbrook is working his final gig as band manager for his best friend, country singer Hunter Cross, leaving to pursue a new job. While on the deck of the cruise ship, JJ spots a blonde goddess and is captivated.

When mutual friends reconnect, Diana and JJ are set up and quickly become enamored with each other, but only have a few chances to sneak away together during their time on the ship. Will they be able go their separate ways after the cruise, or will romance—and careers—bring them together again?

My Review

Short, Sweet, and Oh so tantalizing! Despite being a little over ninety pages or so, this short story will leave you clambering for the sequel especially if you are into romances. It’s a hilarious yet loving romp about two unsuspecting people who have a limited amount of time to fall in love, but who will cave first?

Diana Tolliver is abandoned by her friend and assistant Liv on board a singles cruise. Originally, she was sent there on a mission by her father to scope out whether it was worth purchasing by her father. It was supposed to be an innocent business venture alongside Liv. That is, until Liv decided to skip out on her own rendezvous and leave Diana stranded to figure what she’ll do next.

Diana quickly rebounds and teams up with another solo girl on the ship and they both go on a mission. They both set up one another with a random male passenger. What could go wrong, right?

Loved the set up, execution, plus all of the characters in this story! Fell in love immediately and could not put it down. If you’re looking for a short romantic novel to dive into – pick this one!

Rating 9

Happy Reading,


C.B.H. ARC Reviews: Wicked Charm By Amber Hart

C.B.H. ARC Reviews: Wicked Charm By Amber Hart


Title: Wicked Charm
Author: Amber Hart
Release Date: January 30th, 2018
Available: Amazon/B&N/Goodreads

**Disclaimer: I received an ARC Copy via NetGalley and Entangled Teen in exchange for an honest review. This does not effect my views whatsoever.**


Nothing good comes from living in the Devil’s swamp.

Willow Bell thinks moving to the Okefenokee area isn’t half bad, but nothing prepares her for what awaits in the shadows of the bog.

Girls are showing up dead in the swamp. And she could be next.

Everyone warns Willow to stay away from Beau Cadwell—the bad boy at the top of their suspect list as the serial killer tormenting the small town.

But beneath his wicked, depthless eyes, there’s something else that draws Willow to him.

When yet another girl he knew dies, though, Willow questions whether she can trust her instincts…or if they’re leading to her own death.

My Review

I’m not going to lie, I had a rough time reading this book. Willow could not stop thinking about Beau. Not even when people were dying around her did she even stop to think, “Hm, all of these girls were involved with this guy. This is clearly not a good idea to be around him.” But obviously romance was more on her mind than intellectual thinking.

This was pitched to be a contemporary suspenseful romance novel….was. Willow is warned by her grandmother in the beginning of the book to steer clear of Beau and his family, that they are of the devil. Kids at school warn her to stay away from him since he is a notorious player who goes through girls like water. Instead, she heads straight toward the snake and believes she will not get bitten.

The trope of the player falling for the new girl because she is “not like other girls” runs rampant through the novel while Beau and Willow grow closer together. I could not get into them. I couldn’t, no matter how hard I tried and believe me, I tried. But when a guy’s ex-girlfriends seem to be popping up dead in the swamp by his home, I’d run to the hills.

The book leans to more on the romance side than the suspense/mystery aspects. The writing style was alright, the descriptions were fantastic, but the execution of the mystery was lacking. If she would have focused more on it, I think it would have been a solid 10/10 for me. Now, however, I’ll be sure to steer clear of the swamps in Georgia. You never know what or whom may be lurking in the shadows.

Rating 5

Happy Reading,


Blog Tour, Giveaway, Guest Post, & ARC Review: Busted By Gina Ciocca

Blog Tour, Giveaway, Guest Post, & ARC Review: Busted By Gina Ciocca

Title: Busted
Author: Gina Ciocca
Available: Amazon/B&N/Books-A-Million/Chapters/iBooks/Kobo
Add to Goodreads

*Disclaimer: I received an ARC copy via NetGalley and Sourcebooks in exchange for a review. This does not effect my review.

hs- about the author

Catching cheaters and liars is a lucrative hobby—until you fall for one of the suspects. Perfect for fans of Veronica Mars, this new novel from the author of Last Year’s Mistake will steal your heart!

Marisa never planned to be a snoop for hire. It wasn’t like she wanted to catch her best friend’s boyfriend making out with another girl. But as her reputation for sniffing out cheaters spreads all over school, Marisa finds herself the reluctant queen of busting two-timing boys.

And her next case? It’s for ex-frenemy Kendall. She’s convinced her boyfriend, TJ, has feelings for someone else and persuades Marissa to start spying on him. But the more Marisa gets to know sincere and artistic TJ, the more she starts to fall for him. Worse yet, the feelings seem to be mutual. Marisa knows she needs to give up her investigation— and the spoken-for guy who may just be the love of her life. Then she uncovers new secrets about Kendall and TJ, secrets that take cheater to a whole new level…

hs- about the author

Contact: Blog/Instagram/Twitter

Gina Cioccagraduated from the University of Connecticut with a degree in English, but in her mind, she never left high school. She relocated from Connecticut to Georgia, where she lives with her husband and son. When she’s not reading or writing, you can find her taking long walks around the lake in her neighborhood.

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hs- my review

Firstly, thank you Sourcebooks for inviting me to participate in this blog tour! I absolutely loved this novel! It was never ending fun that kept me on my toes.

Marissa is this creative teenager with a heart for helping out her friends and sticking up for them. Little did she know the impact she had after catching her friend Charlie’s date cheating on her and capturing it for the world to see. News of her investigative skills reached her school and into the ears of her former childhood friend Kendall, sparking a chain of events that I did not see coming.

The story starts out innocent then spirals into a mystery and reminded me like a hit CW show, in a fantastic way! Marissa begins her case for Kendall by following her friend’s boyfriend, T.J.. As she begins to follow him, she begins to get to know him on the side, discovering they both have a similar love for creating things for others like paintings, bracelets, pins, and belts. Although there may be those similarities, they are linked by a deep mystery that rocks both of their worlds.

Marissa’s best friend, Charlie, is accused to stealing test answers and selling them throughout her high school which risks her scholarship and future. The more Marisa investigates Charlie’s case, the more she realizes T.J. may possibly be involved….or is he?

I could not get enough of this book! The pacing was quite fast and there was never a dull moment amongst these characters. The chemistry is off the charts, the dialogue is informative and very hilarious at times, and the premise of the book is merely scratching the surface.

Oh, and the banter between Nick, Charlie, and Marissa is PERFECT! They are officially my current favorite YA literary group. I could never get enough of their interactions together. If there would ever be a sequel – please let it be about Nick and Charlie!

hs- giveaway

Enter for a chance to win a copy of Busted!

Enter Here!

Marisa’s Top 5 Tips For Sleuthing

Hey there. Marisa Palmera, Private Eye here. Okay, so I don’t actually call myself that, and neither does anyone else. In fact, I never meant to become a sleuth-for-hire. But spend one night scaling your best-friend’s boyfriend’s house to take incriminating pictures, and suddenly everyone wants you to be something you’re not…and when they ’re willing to line your sadly lacking pockets for it, it doesn’t sound like such a bad idea. So, should you find yourself an unwitting Girl Friday (or even a witting one… Is “witting” a thing?) like I did, here are some tips that just may save your butt:

  1. Always have a camera handy. Whether it’s your cell phone, or the fancy camera you borrowed from your school’s yearbook club, you never know when you’ll need to snap an evidence shot. Just, um, make sure you turn off the flash if said camera is aimed through a window into a dark living room. I may have learned this the hard way.
  2. Keep your friends close, but your enemies closer. Sounds ominous and dramatic, I know. But if someone gives you the vibe that they shouldn’t be let out of your sight? GO WITH IT.
  3. Think fast. Suck at lying? Me too. Get over it, because you’ll be fudging the truth a lot.

  4. But know when to say no. Weave enough white lies, and suddenly they’re a sticky, tangled web with you trapped inside. Know when it’s time to run, and do it like the flames of hell are licking your feet.

  5. Don’t fall for the person you’re investigating. Yeah. You’re just gonna have to do as I say and not as I do on this one. Oops…

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Rating 10

Happy Reading!


C.B.H. Reviews: Let Astray By Kelley Armstrong

C.B.H. Reviews: Let Astray By Kelley Armstrong


If you’re new to my blog, welcome to the Charmed Book Haven! I remember when I started this blog almost three years ago, I embarked on a journey with one of my first reviews of Kelly Armstrong’s Bitten (Women of the Otherworld Book 1). The same year, I joined Net Galley and received the opportunity to read and review Kelly’s compilation of her best short stories in Let Astray. 

Each one of these short stories are from her hit OtherworldCainsville, Age of Legends, and Darkest Powers/Darkness Rising series or original short stories. Here are my ratings the short stories:

Original Short Stories

Rakhashi: I needed more information on the Rakhashi! I wish Kelley would write more on them.

6 out of 10 Book Charms 

A Haunted House of Her Own: 


We meet married couple Tanya and Nathan, who are seeking out a haunted house in order to transform into a B&B. The more the story unfolds, we find that the story nor the actions of the house are what they seem. Is it truly haunted or a matter of madness?

8 out of 10 Book Charms

Last Stand: Different twist on a zombie story. What happens when the monsters become aware and go after the humans that attacked them?

6 out of 10 Book Charms

The Door: This story made my cry! A father and mother will do anything to protect their family – even if it means risking their own lives.

8 out of 10 Book Charms

Dead Flowers By a Roadside: I could not stop crying with this one. No matter how short it is, you can feel the father’s grief over losing his daughter and wife. My only question is did he turn into a ghost in the end?

7 out of 10 Book Charms

Suffer the Children: The idea was there, but the resolution fell flat.

6.5 out of 10 Book Charms

The Collector: Now I want to track down the Hellraiser short story collection! Great adaption of the Hellraiser lore.

10 out of 10 Book Charms

Harbinger: If dead people are trying to give you a warning, listen and don’t yell at them.

8.5 out of 10 Book Charms

Plan B: Hell Hath no fury than the “Other Woman’s” scorn.

7.5 out of 10 Book Charms

Dead to Me: Was not expecting how this story went.

7 out of 10 Book Charms

Age of Legends

The Kitsune’s Nine Tales: The Katsune’s Nine Tales: 9 Tales = 9 Lies. Beware of the Katsune’s tricks. You may end up with a knife in your back.

7 out of 10 Book Charms

Cainsville Series Stories

The Screams of Dragons: Wow, I’m ready to start reading the Cainsville series! A strange town filled with magnificent beings who only want to help the misunderstood and gifted. Unfortunately, they couldn’t help Bobby. Even though someone may come from a dark past, it is up to them to give into the darkness. The ending was completely unexpected!

10 out of 10 Book Charms

Gabriel’s Gargoyles: Wasn’t really needed….

6 out of 10 Book Charms

The Hunt: Sometimes it’s not the animal you’re hunting, but yourself.

6 out of 10 Book Charms

Devil May Care: Prequel to Gabriel’s Gargoyles, Love the fae lore aspect!

Darkest Powers/Darkness Rising

Kat: I haven’t read the Darkness Rising series since I was in high school and it looks like I may need to pick them up and refresh. We’re reminded of the genetic experiments operations of the Edison Group as they are seeking to retrieve the escaped experiment, Kat. Quick, Simple, but good story from that world.

9 out of 10 Book Charms

Branded: It was missing something, I don’t know what, but something…

5 out of 10 Book Charms

Otherworld Universe

Learning Curve: Welcome back to the Otherworld. If you’re going to try to stake a vampire, make sure you don’t run into Zoe and are better prepared, kids.

6 out of 10 Book Charms

Bamboozled: The story as ok. Imagine a heist involving supernaturals that goes wrong.

6 out of 10 Book Charms

The List: More like Learning Curve Prt. 2

6 out of 10 Book Charms

Young Bloods: Wasn’t anything too special.

5 out of 10 Book Charms

V Plates: Play on “V-Card”! I missed Nick from this series!

8 out of 10 Book Charms

Life Sentence: A bit slow, but love the ending!

7 out of 10 Book Charms


Rating 8


Happy Reading!


C.B.H. ARC Review: Pretty Dead Girls By Monica Murphy

C.B.H. ARC Review: Pretty Dead Girls By Monica Murphy


Title: Pretty Dead Girls
Author: Monica Murphy
Release Date: January 2nd, 2018
Available: Amazon/B&N/Goodreads

*Disclaimer – I received an ARC copy courtesy of Entangled Publishing & NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.*


Beautiful. Perfect. Dead.

In the peaceful seaside town of Cape Bonita, wicked secrets and lies are hidden just beneath the surface. But all it takes is one tragedy for them to be exposed.

The most popular girls in school are turning up dead, and Penelope Malone is terrified she’s next. All the victims so far have been linked to Penelope—and to a boy from her physics class. The one she’s never really noticed before, with the rumored dark past and a brooding stare that cuts right through her.

There’s something he isn’t telling her. But there’s something she’s not telling him, either.

Everyone has secrets, and theirs might get them killed.

My Review

We are told throughout the novel that nothing happens in the small Northern Californian town of Cape Bonita. MURDER doesn’t happen in Cape Bonita. For a society of popular high school girls called “The Larks”, their world is about to be rocked by the senior Larks being killed off one by one. By who, you may ask? Penelope, President of the Larks, is searching for answers.

This story is told from the perspective of Penelope and the killer. The gender reveal of the killer happened quite early in the novel to my dismay. I wished this detail remained anonymous due to it narrowing down my personal list of suspects.

These group of girls, specifically the seniors, are not what you would call role models….oh what am I even doing, these girls are savage. Well, except for Dani and Penelope. Gretchen, Courtney, and Lexi are another incarnation of the original Mean Girls themselves minus being-


I flew through the book rather quickly. My main problems with this book was the dialogue, the extremely strange information dumping sessions, and, I hate to say it, but underwhelming reveal at the end. The motivations behind the killer’s actions reminded me of the classic horror movie Prom Night.

Penelope’s dialogue is strange and I had a hard time staying connected with her. I don’t know if it’s because I’m an adult or what, but there were times where I rolled my eyes and longed to tell her to get over herself. The information dumping sessions she would throw at you made no sense. It’s like “ok, what is the point of you talking about this? It has nothing to do with this current situation.” This didn’t happen on one occasion either, this was a continuous loop.

Mind you, this was the unreleased draft. These problems are probably fixed, but they constantly bothered me. Other than these issues, it’s worth the read.


Rating 6


Happy Reading!


Blog Tour, Q&A, & ARC Book Review: Between the Blade and the Heart By Amanda Hocking

Blog Tour, Q&A, & ARC Book Review: Between the Blade and the Heart By Amanda Hocking

Cover Between the Blade and the Heart.jpg

Title: Between The Blade and the Heart (Valkyrie Book 1)
Author: Amanda Hocking
Release Date: January 2nd, 2018
Available: Amazon/B&N/Books-a-Million/IndieBound/Powells

*Disclaimer: I received an ARC Copy via NetGalley and St. Martins Griffin. This does not effect my review in any way.*

Book Blurb

Game of Thrones meets Blade Runner in this commanding new YA fantasy inspired by Norse Mythology from New York Times bestselling author Amanda Hocking.

As one of Odin’s Valkyries, Malin’s greatest responsibility is to slay immortals and return them to the underworld. But when she unearths a secret that could unravel the balance of all she knows, Malin along with her best friend and her ex-girlfriend must decide where their loyalties lie. And if helping the blue-eyed boy Asher enact his revenge is worth the risk-to the world and her heart.



The air reeked of fermented fish and rotten fruit, thanks to the overflowing dumpster from the restaurant behind us. The polluted alley felt narrow and claustrophobic, sandwiched between skyscrapers.

In the city, it was never quiet or peaceful, even at three in the morning. There were more than thirty million humans and supernatural beings coexisting, living on top of each other. It was the only life I’d ever really known, but the noise of the congestion grated on me tonight.

My eyes were locked on the flickering neon lights of the gambling parlor across the street. The u in Shibuya had gone out, so the sign flashed SHIB YA at me.

The sword sheathed at my side felt heavy, and my body felt restless and electric. I couldn’t keep from fidgeting and cracked my knuckles.

“He’ll be here soon,” my mother, Marlow, assured me. She leaned back against the brick wall beside me, casually eating large jackfruit seeds from a brown paper sack. Always bring a snack on a stakeout was one of her first lessons, but I was far too nervous and excited to eat.

The thick cowl of her frayed black sweater had been pulled up like a hood, covering her cropped blond hair from the icy mist that fell on us. Her tall leather boots only went to her calf, thanks to her long legs. Her style tended to be monochromatic—black on black on black—aside from the shock of dark red lipstick.

My mother was only a few years shy of her fiftieth birthday, with almost thirty years of experience working as a Valkyrie, and she was still as strong and vital as ever. On her hip, her sword Mördare glowed a dull red through its sheath.

The sword of the Valkyries was one that appeared as if it had been broken in half—its blade only a foot long before stopping at a sharp angle. Mördare’s blade was several thousand years old, forged in fires to look like red glass that would glow when the time was nigh.

My sword was called Sigrún, a present on my eighteenth birthday from Marlow. It was a bit shorter than Mördare, with a thicker blade, so it appeared stubby and fat. The handle was black utilitarian, a replacement that my mom had had custom-­made from an army supply store, to match her own.

The ancient blade appeared almost black, but as it grew closer to its target, it would glow a vibrant purple. For the past hour that we’d been waiting on our stakeout, Sigrún had been glowing dully on my hip.

The mist grew heavier, soaking my long black hair. I kept the left side of my head shaved, parting my hair over to the right, and my scalp should’ve been freezing from the cold, but I didn’t feel it. I didn’t feel anything.

It had begun—the instinct of the Valkyrie, pushing aside my humanity to become a weapon. When the Valkyrie in me took over, I was little more than a scythe for the Grim Reaper of the gods.

“He’s coming,” Marlow said behind me, but I already knew.

The world fell into hyperfocus, and I could see every droplet of rain as it splashed toward the ground. Every sound echoed through me, from the bird flapping its wings a block away, to the club door as it groaned open.

Eleazar Bélanger stumbled out, his heavy feet clomping in the puddles. He was chubby and short, barely over four feet tall, and he would’ve appeared to be an average middle-­aged man if it wasn’t for the two knobby horns that stuck out on either side of his forehead. Graying tufts of black hair stuck out from under a bright red cap, and as he walked ahead, he had a noticeable limp favoring his right leg.

He was a Trasgu, a troublemaking goblin, and his appearance belied the strength and cunning that lurked within him. He was over three hundred years old, and today would be the day he died.

I waited in the shadows of the alley for him to cross the street. A coughing fit caused him to double over, and he braced himself against the brick wall.

I approached him quietly—this all went easier when they didn’t have time to prepare. He took off his hat to use it to wipe the snot from his nose, and when he looked up at me, his green eyes flashed with understanding.

“It’s you,” Eleazar said in a weak, craggy voice. We’d never met, and I doubt he’d ever seen me before, but he recognized me, the way they all did when their time was up.

“Eleazar Bélanger, you have been chosen to die,” I said, reciting my script, the words automatic and cold on my lips. “It is my duty to return you to the darkness from whence you came.”

“No, wait!” He held up his pudgy hands at me. “I have money. I can pay you. We can work this out.”

“This is not my decision to make,” I said as I pulled the sword from my sheath.

His eyes widened as he realized I couldn’t be bargained with. For a moment I thought he might just accept his fate, but they rarely did. He bowed his head and ran at me like a goat. He was stronger than he looked and caused me to stumble back a step, but he didn’t have anywhere to go.

My mother stood blocking the mouth of the alley, in case I needed her. Eleazar tried to run toward the other end, but his leg slowed him, and I easily overtook him. Using the handle of my sword, I cracked him on the back of the skull, and he fell to the ground on his knees.

Sigrún glowed brightly, with light shining out from it and causing the air to glow purple around us. Eleazar mumbled a prayer to the Vanir gods. I held the sword with both hands, and I struck it across his neck, decapitating him.

And then, finally, the electricity that had filled my body, making my muscles quiver and my bones ache, left me, and I breathed in deeply. The corpse of an immortal goblin lay in a puddle at my feet, and I felt nothing but relief.

“It was a good return,” my mother said, and put her hand on my shoulder. “You did well, Malin.”

Copyright © 2018 by Amanda Hocking in Between the Blade and the Heart and reprinted by permission of St. Martin’s Griffin.


About the Author

Amanda Hocking is the author of over twenty young adult novels, including the New York Times bestselling Trylle Trilogy and Kanin Chronicles. Her love of pop culture and all things paranormal influence her writing. She spends her time in Minnesota, taking care of her menagerie of pets and working on her next book.




Author Q&A

Q: What or who was the inspiration behind Between the Blade and the Heart

A: I have already written several books inspired by Scandinavian folklore, and I was always fascinated by Valkyries. But because I had already done in Scandinavian fantasy, I wanted to come at this one from a different angle. I imagined the Valkyries helping to police a gritty, diverse, cyberpunk metropolis, in a world filled with not just Norse figures but from many mythologies.

Q: How did you name your characters? Are they based on people you know in real life?

A: It’s combination of names I like and taking inspiration from the world itself. With Between the Blade and the Heart, the names were inspired both by the mythology they come from – many Valkyries have Norse names like Malin, Teodora, and Freya, for example – and the futuristic setting of the book, so I wanted names that seemed a bit cooler and just slightly different than the ones we use now.

Q: What came first: The world, the mythology, or the characters?

A: I usually say the characters come first, and the world builds around it. But for this one, it really was the world that drew me into it. I knew I was writing about a young woman who was a Valkyrie, but that about all when I began building up the world and the mythology.

Q: What cities inspired the urban haven where the Valkyries live?

A: I was really obsessed with this idea of an overpopulated metropolis, and so I took a lot of inspiration from some of the biggest cities in the world, particularly Tokyo, Mexico City, Mumbai, and Manila. The city itself is actually a sort of futuristic, alternate reality of Chicago (one of my favorite cities in the world), and I wanted to incorporate that into it as well.

Q: Was this book always planned as a series or did that develop afterwards?

A: It was always planned as a duology. I don’t want to go into too much or risk spoiling the second book, but I had this idea that one book would be above, and the other below.

Q: Who is your favorite character in this book and why?

A: Oona or Bowie. Oona because she’s so practical, supportive, and determined, and Bowie because he’s adorable.

Q: What songs would you include if you were to make a soundtrack for the book?

A: This is my favorite question! I love creating soundtracks that I listen to while writing a book, and here are some of my favorite tracks from my Between the Blade and the Heart playlist: Annie Lennox – “I Put a Spell on You,” Daniel Johns – “Preach,” Halsey – “Trouble (stripped),” Meg Myers – “Sorry (EthniKids Remix),” and MYYRA – “Human Nature.”


My Review

First of all I want to thank St. Martins and Amanda Hocking for the pleasure of reading and given the opportunity to participate in this blog tour. It’s been a wild ride so far and I can not get enough of the Valkyrie or their world. Norse Mythology has always had a special place in my heart and I have enjoyed Amanda’s Trylle Trilogy along with her other books she’s lovingly written for readers around the world.

In the world in Between the Blade and the Heart, immortals and mortals live together. The Valkyrie are ordered to keep balance amongst the citizens by taking a grim reaper approach if you will in dispatching immortals that seem harmful to the community. Malin, a Valkyrie in training, was brought up by a distant mother who always taught her to stay away from emotions in this world made up of rules. She is taught to withhold these principles and keep to the high priority a Valkyrie faces while upholding her duties. That is until Malin is faced with a devastating blow when someone close to her breaks the rules and saves an Immortal “Marked” for death by the Valkyrie. Malin slowly begins to realize nothing is what it seems in her life. She is joined by her ex-girlfriend and a mysterious boy named Asher on her quest to right the balance her mother threw off at the expense of love and emotion.

I enjoyed this book immensely! Out of all the characters, I wished Quinn, Malin’s ex-girlfriend, was my best friend! She is supportive, brave…uh, could not get enough of her! I enjoyed the LGTBQ element to the story. There is conflict between Quinn and Malin due to the emotional bond between the two and I wish they would work it out. On the other hand, I like Malin and Asher’s attraction as well. It’s difficult to pick between the two!

The book is fast-paced and will keep you on your toes. Most chapters end on a cliffhanger note that pulls you in tighter as the story progresses. Does it have it’s flaws? Yes. Does it overwhelm the plot? No. I like this world and ready for the next chapter!


Rating 7

Happy Reading!


C.H.B. ARC Review: The New Dark By Lorraine Thomson

C.H.B. ARC Review: The New Dark By Lorraine Thomson


Title: The New Dark
Author: Lorraine Thomson
Release Date: November 1st, 2017
Available: Amazon/B&N/Goodreads

**Disclaimer – I received an ARC copy via Bastei Entertainment and NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. This does not effect my review whatsoever. **

NetGalley Description

“She thought she knew who she was and where she came from.Then her home was destroyed. Her brother lost amongst the ashes. And the boy she loves vanished. She owed her own survival to a mutant — the very forces behind the destruction. Now Sorrel will never be the same again.”

There is no “Before”, there is only “Now”. Because now there’s no internet, no TV, no power grid. Food is scarce, and the world’s a hostile place. But Sorrel lives a quiet life in the tiny settlement of Amat. It’s all she’s ever known …

Until a gang of marauding mutants destroys the village, snatching her brother Eli, and David, her boyfriend. Sorrel sets out after them, embarking on a journey fraught with danger. Can she survive? The only thing that keeps her going is Eli and David. They are out there somewhere. They must be alive. And if she has her way, she will find them.

My Review

Times are changing when it comes to popular genres. A few years ago, Dystopian reigned supreme on the shelves and now they are beginning to fall short of their former glory. I had very high expectations for this Fantasy/Dystopian that was met with….well…problems.

Sorrel is set on a journey after her village, Amat, is attacked by vicious mutants. She barely escapes then goes on a search for her younger brother Eli and love interest David after they disappear after the raid. We begin to learn a little about the world before the mutants when technology reigned supreme. However, we do not really receive much of an explanation as to where the mutants come from in this world or even what happened to rupture the world as we once knew it.

The story’s perspective is told between Sorrel and David. Sorrel has major character flaws that drove me crazy. She was completely immature in the beginning and maybe she’ll grow up in the second book, who knows. She never gave more insight upon her mysterious birthmark or showed much growth in my opinion. David didn’t do much for me either.

The story is simple and fast paced, but it left too many questions behind and not enough answers. I kept getting frustrated for the lack of information and clarity on the past. If it didn’t have all those issues, I think I’d want to read the second book….as of right now I think it’s a pass for me.


Rating 2

Happy Reading,