Book Drunk Sloth

My name is Britney and I'm a bookaholic. The books I read tend to be in three genres, however I do try to read things outside of my favorites. Fantasy, Historical Romance (usually Regency), and Fantasy Romance (though I'm not the craziest for Urban or vampires and zombies).

The Accidental Duchess

The Accidental Duchess - Madeline Hunter

This was my first book written by Madeline Hunter and I luckily won it in a Goodreads Giveaway. I would definitely suggest to anyone trying out this author or this series to start with the first book and read up to this one. I have not read the others but I think that I may have enjoyed this book more if I had.

I feel bad for Lydia, in that someone is blackmailing her over a silly novel that she wrote for fun a few years back. She has no idea how the manuscript was taken but it almost makes her look like she's a traitor. She has great luck with gambling however, and decides to try her luck against Penthurst. 10,000 or her innocence. Unfortunately for Lydia, she meets her match because Penthurst has more luck than she.

Penthurst had no intention of keeping the wager and he is only trying to teach her a lesson on gambling. However, he becomes interested in why she is trying to get the money and finds her in some interesting situations. He plays the hero but always seems to become more of an authority figure than anything. 

Honestly, I didn't feel the love between the two. At first Lydia hates the man and then learns more and more about the past. She realizes there was more at play then she originally knew. I liked that Lydia was able to look past her initial hatred. They just fell into a very quiet sort of love. I don't know how else to explain it.

It didn't move me in any way. I think that I would have been more into it if I had read from the first book to this one to get to know the characters better. 

What I did really enjoy in this book was the mystery to it. Finding out how the manuscript was taken and what happened in the duel that Penthurst was in was exciting. This book was unique mostly because of the character, Lydia. She is so independent and a "woman of the world" that she shuts almost all men out. Because of this she makes some foolish decisions but she learns from them eventually. I also liked how sometimes our first loves blind us to reality. I think every girl goes through this with their first beau.

I will most likely read another book from Madeline Hunter but I wouldn't say she's a must buy for me at this point.

Look What I Received in the Mail Today!!

Today, when I got home from work, I was excited to find a present from one of my favorite authors, Erin Knightley! Signed bookmarks!!

 

 

 

Actually, this is only some of what she sent. I will be taking them (minus a handful to keep for myself;)) to my local library tomorrow. Hopefully, it will help get her name out there more, and then she'll continue to write even more AMAZING books!

Assassin's Apprentice - Review

Assassin's Apprentice  - Robin Hobb

What separates this book from all the rest??

I believe that Hobb is what I was looking for when reading Tolkien. Tolkien had such great stories to tell, however, I was lost in the lengthy descriptions of the surroundings. He painted too detailed a picture and I felt that it took away from his writing. Hobb had an approach that was similar and she described her world in just enough detail. I didn't feel lost. I felt I was right there. She also has a wonderful way of making you connect to her main character, Fitz. The character admits his shortcomings (and he does have them which is awesome) and he gets confused on what it is he thinks he should do. I rarely see this in characters and I felt it made Fitz come alive.

 

Assassin's Apprentice is your typical epic fantasy. It was everything I expected it to be in some sense but at the same time threw me around quite a bit. I believe this is the first epic fantasy I've read that is written by a female. I didn't feel this was a distinguishable fact that would relate to the greatness of this book. It was just something I noticed.

 

The story is about a boy named Fitz who is the illegitimate son of a prince. The story follows his growth into a young man, while he is trained to be an assassin for the king. I loved that this was a coming of age story. My heart went out to Fitz so many times, I just wanted to give the kid a hug and help him to fight his loneliness.

 

This book was great in politics. The magic system was barley touched on, but it was intriguing all the same. The author was able to paint the picture very well without being too wordy or getting too involved in descriptions. This book is told in the first person which normally I avoid. However, this book contained none of the shortcomings that I usually see from that perspective (whining, and a lack of seeing the other characters outside the main POV). 

 

On a personal note, I was thrilled that the author used four (count them FOUR) references to tatting in this book. For those of you who don't know, tatting is a form of lace making typically using a shuttle or very large needle to make knots in your thread. I taught myself this craft a little over a year ago and I absolutely love it. However, it is not very highly known. Kudos to Robin Hobb! Here are some pics of my tatting if you're interested...

 

I am super excited to say that I've found a new fantasy world I'm ready to dive on into. I cannot wait to continue this story! 

 

 

The Baron Next Door

The Baron Next Door - Erin Knightley And Erin Knightley does it again! This woman cannot write a book I don't absolutely love! After reading Flirting with Fortune, and getting the first chapter of The Baron Next Door I have been dying to read this book. It did not disappoint!

Of course I had to reread the first chapter again, and I got me so excited to read this story. However, after that amazing chapter things slowed way down. I will admit that the only thing I disliked about this book was how slow it was after the first chapter. I was really expecting the two leads to "prank" each other more.

I did enjoy that Charity made some great friends for the music festival, but I am torn. Sometimes I felt there was too much of the friendship and not enough interaction between Hugh and Charity. Other times I felt everything was just right.

What makes this book stand apart from the rest is like all of Erin Knightley's books, there are not any sex scenes. For me this is golden, but for others it might be a negative. Also, ever since A Taste of Scandal, I think a lot of Knightley's fans have been wondering what happened to sweet Charity. This book was perfect for her because the one man who couldn't stand her music set himself apart from the rest. There were a lot of cultural references as well, which I think will intensify in the third book to this series. As always, the romances are so real in Knightley's books. They always make me fall for the guy. This book was just splendid!

Hugh was my favorite type of hero. He has troubles and feels he doesn't deserve the woman he loves because he thinks she deserves better. These types always steal my heart because they give up what they want more than anything in the world for the person they love to be happy. Such sacrifice is so romantic.

Charity is just an absolute sweetheart that I totally related to. She is always the dutiful daughter and never is rude. I feel like I hold back from saying mean things to people who deserve it all the time. However, she and I like to avoid conflict. We admire the strong people who say what they feel and wish we could be more like them. Charity did find her backbone in this story though when it really mattered, and I adored her for it.

Fantastic read! I'm sure I will read it again!

Daughter of the Empire

Daughter of the Empire - Raymond E. Feist This book was intelligently written and mostly revolved around politics and honor. I was proud of how well I followed The Game of the Council. I am not the strongest at following politics, but I found that I understood the implications of various actions and events in this story.

I was deeply disappointed in the minimal amount of magic in this book. Magic is one of the main reasons I love fantasy so much. The setting was somewhat similar to the orient, and the environment was manly a dusty desert. This was neither a negative nor a positive for me.

Mara is an extraordinarily brilliant young woman who's father and older brother just died leaving her the ruler of her lands. She never formally received any political training from her father because she was not the heir, so when she is thrust into this role, she has to learn as she goes. She also pushes tradition to it's edges so that her people can survive.

I did struggle with all of the names. It is typical for fantasies to have unique names, but I didn't like any of the names in this book. These weren't just the names of people and places either. It was of clothing, food, plants, and animals. It was just a little too much in my opinion.

There are some other great characters in this story as well. Nacoya, Keyoke, and Papewaio (my favorite) just to name a few. These were the main advisers for Mara and they each stood out to me for their differing personalities. I admired how the authors could manage that with all of the other complexities in this book.

What makes this book different from all others?
I think Mara's strength of mind and spirit was definitely unique. I've read about quite a few strong women, but Mara's situation was much more difficult. The whole culture of honor in this book was very unique. I found myself very interested in understanding its rules and reasoning. For example, for the people in this book, suicide by blade is considered an honorable death and hanging is considered to be a slave's death or very dishonorable.

I will continue this series. Mara is so cunning I can't wait to see what she does next. I hope that magic plays a larger role in the future books though, and I hope that Mara can open herself to find love.

The Bridgertons: Happily Ever After (Bridgertons #9.1-9.9)

The Bridgertons: Happily Ever After  - Julia Quinn This review is a little more difficult than most. This book is an anthology of 2nd Epilogues that Julia Quinn wrote, mostly because her fans would ask so many questions after reading her books. I wouldn't call them novellas because they were much shorter than that. Violet in Bloom was the closest one to a novella but even that was super short in my opinion.

The epilogues range from funny and light, to scary and slightly depressing. Violet in Bloom had me very close to tears, but I'm not sure if that was because the story was at its ending. This is a long series where I got connected with so many characters for so long and I was sad to see them go.

This is definitely a must read for all Bridgerton fans out there. Otherwise though, I don't believe anyone else would enjoy it. You have to have read the original books first to fully understand and appreciate this book.

On the Way to the Wedding

On the Way to the Wedding - Julia Quinn And we have the last of the Bridgerton clan, Gregory. This book was much better the second time through than I remember from the first. I really felt that Julia Quinn played around a lot with this book. The first time I read it, I don't think I realized what she was doing and just became very annoyed. But this time, I found it absolutely hilarious!

Gregory fully believes in true love. How can he not when all seven of his siblings were blissfully and happily attached? He truly thinks that when it happens to him that it will be love at first sight. When he attends his Sister-in-Law's country gathering, Gregory falls head over heels for Hermione Watson. The funny part is that it happens while he glimpses her neck.

Lucy Abernathy is Hermione's closest friend, and she isn't a bit surprised that Mr. Bridgerton falls like all the rest for her gorgeous friend. Lucy actually tries to help Gregory win Hermione's love because she calls him the lesser of two evils. You see Hermione is in love with her father's secretary, and her parents would never approve.

Gregory struggles to get Lucy's attention and finds it difficult to keep up conversation with her. He doesn't realize how easy it is for he and Lucy to converse. They even begin to tease each other. I found it very wonderful that their thinking was so very similar.

Well, Gregory eventually figures out he is interested in Lucy and not Hermione (which the events are exciting but I don't want to give any spoilers away). Then the two have more hurdles to jump before any sort of Happily Ever After is in sight.

I loved how similar Lucy and Gregory were and how different at the same time. They fit together perfectly. Gregory didn't come off as whiny as I remembered from the first read. Lucy is just an absolute sweetheart who is always trying to make the people she loves around her happy. She does this to the point where she sacrifices her own happiness for it. I found I related to her a lot except for her OCD.

I did really love this book more this time around, and because of that I bumped up my rating to 5 stars. Julia Quinn is a master at historical romances. I can't wait for the last to come out of the Smythe-Smith Quartet!

The Diamond Secret

The Diamond Secret - Suzanne Weyn, Larry Rostant, Mahlon F. Craft As much as I enjoyed reading this book, I still felt it was missing something. While it was very similar to the cartoon movie, I'm not to sure that was the problem.

Most everyone knows the story of the Russian princess who might have escaped the murder of the Romanov family. Nadya, doesn't remember anything about her life before about a year prior. Two guys, Ivan and Sergei, meet her when she serves them at a restaurant. They believe she will be perfect to pose as the lost Anastasia. They are both looking for reward money for different reasons.

Because she can't remember her past, Nadya agrees to travel with them to Paris in the hopes of maybe finding her family and her past. Along the way the three become friends. They undergo some interesting adventures.

Ivan is troubled from his past in the military and he was there when the royals' bodies were being buried. He regrets the things he's been apart of and now he's considered a deserter. The money he trying for as a reward he hopes will start him on a new life away from Russia. Well, while Nadya and Ivan makes this journey together, they realize they have feelings for each other.

The romance was very sweet. It was one of the better of the Once Upon a Time series.

The Perks of Being a Wallflower

The Perks of Being a Wallflower - Stephen Chbosky I watched the movie before I read this book. I was really moved by the movie, but after reading the book I felt that I got more from the book. I felt that understood Charlie so much more.

THis story was a coming of age story about a boy named Charlie who is going through his freshman year of high school. The poor kid is going through a lot. His friend committed suicide the previous year among other things. He is an introvert, and he struggles socially. A couple of seniors named Sam and Patrick befriend.

I really loved that Charlie makes mistakes but he is trying to do his best. All I wanted to do was give him a huge hug and just sit with him.

This was a great book. It's one that I would recommend to younger teens. I think it shows that everyone of us is going through our own things. We don't realize all the problems everyone is going through, and maybe that might open up our eyes when we see people. Maybe it could make things better.

The One

The One  - Kiera Cass I must say that this series has been a love hate relationship for me. While I just had to know how it ended, America drove me absolutely crazy. This whole book I kept thinking, "America, just be up front with Maxon about Aspen.If you don't everything is going to explode and in a bad way." And I just hate it when people hold their emotions to themselves. If you love someone tell them! It'll make for a lot less heartache. I just was very frustrated.

The whole series I've hated this love triangle. Oh it drove me nuts. And the story felt dragged out. I don't think this should have taken three books. In all honesty, a lot of this book felt like fluff until the very end. There were some really exciting bits about the rebels and such, but I was only reading through that to find out the decision.

I feel bad that I felt this way. I think if I wasn't so impatient to figure out who Maxon picked, I would have enjoyed the rest so much more. This book did not frustrate me as much as The Elite, thank goodness. I'm glad this is all over. Maybe this just wasn't for a woman my age to read.

One Good Earl Deserves a Lover

One Good Earl Deserves a Lover - Sarah MacLean Absolutely amazing! I'll be adding this to my favorites.

After reading this book, I'm very confident that I've determined my favorite type of hero. That hero is the one who is ashamed of something about himself to the point where he feels unworthy of happiness. This man pushes anyone he cares about away so that he doesn't hurt them. They try so hard to do what they see is best for those they love, even when it is the one thing they truly desire. Cross was this man, and I fully admit that in reading this book, I fell in love with him as a character.

Sadly for me (haha not really I guess) he was meant for Miss Pippa Marbury. She was fantastic! I found her to be very intelligent and true to herself. She knew what her morals were and stuck to them. Funny thing for her was, she starts realizing the world isn't as black and white as she'd always believed. The absolute sole thing I disliked about this book involved Pippa though. She was scientific ALL THE TIME. I'm an engineer and have met many very intelligent scientist types who didn't only think of their studies. She made me think of a female version of Sheldon from the Big Band Theory at times. I also think that glasses doesn't always land on intelligent people's faces. It seems that books always make that stereotype.

I did absolutely love the conversations between Cross and Pippa. They just understood each other so perfectly. It was quite charming. I would love to go to The Fallen Angel. It sounds like so much fun! I don't want to give away any spoilers for people who haven't read this, but Pippa's genius really makes the end spectacular! I just absolutely loved it!

I cannot wait to continue this series. This is the second book of Sarah MacLean's that I have read. She's just got another huge fan to add to her list. She is now a must buy author for me.

Under a Wild Sky

Under a Wild Sky - Sasha Lord I did in fact quite enjoy the majority of this book. There was a lot of everything I love in this book. It was in a historical setting. There was magic involved. The was a pretty good love story. There was a bit of a mystery. Lastly, the heroine was not a damsel in distress in the usual form.

Kalial (I love that name by the way) is a young woman who is princess of a people who dwells in the forest of Lock Nidean. Her entire life was for her to protect the forest, her people, and a very old secret of them both. She is very strong and talented when it comes to throwing daggers and shooting bows. She can also communicate with animals around her. Because of her position within the tribe and magical abilities, she was raised slightly apart from the other children. This definitely left her lacking in social skills.

Ronin just lost his entire family and the castle he called home to an evil man named Lothian. Lothian is trying to find the "Scottish Gold" that he believed Ronin's family knows about. Ronin escapes Lothian into the forest, but he is relentlessly pursued by Lothian's men. Ronin is very young in mmind as well as body and just overfilled with a longing for vengeance for his fallen family.

Kalial and Ronin meet in the forest, and Ronin believes Kalial to be a young boy. I agree with many other reviewers that it takes a bit too long for Ronin to figure out the truth about Kalial's identity. However, so much happens to this pair, that I really fell into this love story. They grew to love each other, not just lust after the physical appearances. They also learned from each other and became better versions of themselves because of it. I would just sometimes get frustrated in the lack of communication between the two main characters. This happens so often with romances though, I am getting used to it.

I only had a few problems with the book. First, the point of view changed very frequently without any distinction that it was happening. I would have to go back and restart paragraphs because I would get confused. There were A LOT of intimate scenes. And those intimate scenes were very vivid. Those scenes would also get me frustrated in how they were described. Parts would be super cheesy in describing things similar to nature or similar, and then words would come in more blunt like "ass". I would transition from laughter to slightly grossed out. However, when I skip those scenes, I love the rest of the book.

This was a great random find for me at my local library. I was just walking down the romance aisle, and found the 4th in this series. It sounded like my kind of read. I am excited to continue the series.

Knight of Love

Knight of Love - Catherine LaRoche I was given an electronic copy of this book for an honest review via Netgalley.

It's pretty rare for me to not finish a book. I got about 40% done with this before I decided it was no longer worth my time because of lack of interest.

Basically, we have Lenora (the female lead), and she is engaged to a horrible German Prinz named Kurt. Her parents left her at his home before the two are married (that alone is pretty weird to me). Once they leave he starts showing his true colors and abuses her like crazy.

After a public flogging, Lenora begins to heal and then plans her escape. Once she is well enough and has gathered supplies, she makes her break. After being on the road for a few days, she gets picked up by some revolutionary soldiers. When she meets their leader, she realizes she had met him once before and he aided in her escape from Kurt by gifting her a dagger to protect herself.

At this point I was still into this story. Sadly, the feelings turn sour because we meet our hero Wolfram. And my goodness did this man drive me nuts. Like listening to nails on a chalkboard kind of nuts. The man claims love at first sight with Lenora, and acts like a besotted fool. He then forces her to marry him, and commits rape to consummate the marriage. He seems to justify this behavior as being her best option for survival from her cruel fiance, and by trying to make her enjoy the consummation. She very clearly says no, repeatedly.

Regardless of Lenora's limited options, the fact that he does all of this despite having her consent is just disgusting. And this man is supposed to be our hero??? Lenora just came out of an abusive relationship from her evil fiance, and Wolfram doesn't realize the damage to her soul from having another man take away her will? She has no control over her life and that kills me for her.

I read a bit past that point, but then decided I was no longer interested in reading how a wonderful female character I really liked, would most likely end up in love with a man who did this to her. It makes me so very sad.

Like I mentioned, I really liked Lenora's character. She was very strong willed and smart. She was selfless. She was pretty badass with a sword and throwing knives. Considering the hell she went through with Kurt, she was managing extremely well. She got herself out. She was definitely no typical damsel in distress.

Wolfram on the other hand was not her fit. He was too much the lovesick puppy. He was described to be very large multiple times. From this and many of the things he said, I pictured him to be like Fezzik from The Princess Bride movie. However, not cute and funny like the awesome Fezzik. Just the visual and speech. For example, he says, "It must be this way, lady." Wolfram did show me one thing. That is I like my heros to be a little more tormented about their love. I am very much not into the "instantly in love" emotion.

As you can tell, I did not enjoy this book at all. I 99.9% sure I will not try any others from Catherine LaRoche.

Ever Mine

Ever Mine - Eden Ashe First things first, is that cover not absolutely stunning? I must admit that I judge books by their covers. Horribly shameful of me, but it is the truth. If the cover intrigues me enough, I'll even read books outside of my normal genre. This was the case with Ever Mine. I'm not normally into urban fantasy romance. My preference is for fantasy romance however, so I thought it wouldn't be too far off.

This is a very short read, almost a novella in size I think. The fact that I felt I really knew the two main characters pretty well in such a short amount of time was pretty fantastic. Also, in that short amount of time, there were at least four intimate scenes. Unfortunately, for me this wasn't a very good thing, but I know for many others out there, you will be quite pleased.

Nathan was a really good guy. He just left his fiance two months before the beginning of this book, and his ended the engagement to be true to his heart. He is quite the gentleman in not wanting to even come close to abusing anyone of the female sex, but unfortunately, he ends up letting those females walk all over him. His biggest flaw in my opinion was his cursing. It drove me a little crazy.

Katenia is a royal type fairy who gets kidnapped and winds up on Nathan's deskas a gift from his crazy aunt. She is a powerful woman who fights for what she loves. However, she does have her own fears and vulnerabilities. Katenia struggles a lot with figures of speech, and I thought it was kind of cute the way she learns of the human world.

Well, there is some action in this story, so it did get pretty exciting from that point. I didn't like how the romance was mostly a physical attraction. Lastly, the witch kind of just gets thrown in the mix weirdly. Some of the bits kind of just seem thrown in at awkward times.

This book was received early from Netgalley/Publisher in return for an honest review.

Possession

Possession - Lynne Ewing, Suza Scalora These books are getting better and better. All of the problems I've had with the first books of the series are few and far between now.

Serena has quite the adventure in this book. She is slowly becoming possessed (haha shocker from the title). What I really liked was that Serena recognised things were wrong and went to her friends for help. It had frustrated me in the past when the girls just wouldn't communicate to each other what was wrong.

The fact that Serena is still in love with Stanton is hard to swallow. He's evil by choice now and still over a hundred years old. It's like Bella and Edward from Twilight. Oh but it's not gross because he looks her age because of immortality. <- [that was meant to be said with sarcasm]. Nope I'm sorry the situation is still pretty disgusting.

However, past that, there is a lot of action in this book. I also was able to follow the fight scenes a little better because they were mostly mind control contests. In a lot of these books the just describe their combined power as a force that is a bright light. But since they can't be violent with their attacks it doesn't make any sense. Since I've been reading more advanced books with very intricate and amazing magic systems (Brandon Sanderson, Brent Weeks, Terry Brooks), this just seems so lazy.

It is still taking me back to my teenage years with these rereads though. I am glad I'm doing it and excited to see what happens at the very end.

I Married the Duke

I Married the Duke - Katharine Ashe This is the best Katharine Ashe book I've read thus far. I was really intrigued as to which sister marries the prince and discovers who their parents were. Honestly though, that is probably the only reason I will read the next two books.

This book just seemed to drag on and on. Many of the conversations lost me in what was happening. It's like Ashe just assumes that you know what the characters are thinking. Some of the time I figured it out, but several times, they would make a realization and I would have no clue what happened.

I did love Arabella. She was strong, and she took care of things on her own. She was a truly good person. She definitely deserved love.

Luc drove me absolutely nuts. He was too proud. He wouldn't talk to Arabella about anything important even though he knew he should. There were so many times I just wanted to go into the book and punch him in the face.

There was a lot of exciting scenes where the main characters had to fight for their lives. There was an evil guy who was behind everything and that confrontation was pretty good.

All in all, I just want to know what happens with the sisters finding out their past. This wasn't even that large of a portion of this book. After this series however, I will not be reading any more of Katharine Ashe's books.