All posts filed under: Fantasy

Entwined by Heather Dixon

Come and mend your broken hearts here. Just when Azalea should feel that everything is before her — beautiful gowns, dashing suitors, balls filled with dancing — it’s taken away. All of it. And Azalea is trapped. The Keeper understands. He’s trapped, too, held for centuries within the walls of the palace. So he extends an invitation. Every night, Azalea and her eleven sisters may step through the enchanted passage in their room to dance in his silver forest, but there is a cost. The Keeper likes to keep things. Azalea may not realize how tangled she is in his web until it is too late. (GoodReads description) The Specs ISBN: 0062001035 , hd, 472pp, 2011 by GreenWillow Books, YA, Fairy Tale Retelling, Romance There is so much humor in this book, I love it.  This is one of my favorite moments, near the beginning of the book (so not spoiling anything): “[…] Azalea looked down to see a pudgy little hand reaching out from beneath the tree, grabbing at his trouser ankle. Azalea cringed. “Not …

The Princess Curse by Merrie Haskell

“Merrie Haskell’s middle-grade fantasy novel Princess Curse is an imaginative retelling of the fairy tales The Twelve Dancing Princesses and Beauty and the Beast. In the fifteenth-century kingdom of Sylvania, the prince offers a fabulous reward to anyone who cures the curse that forces the princesses to spend each night dancing to the point of exhaustion. Everyone who tries disappears or falls into an enchanted sleep. Thirteen-year-old Reveka, a smart, courageous herbalist’s apprentice, decides to attempt to break the curse despite the danger. Unravelling the mystery behind the curse leads Reveka to the Underworld, and to save the princesses, Reveka will have to risk her soul. Princess Curse combines magic, suspense, humor, and adventure into a story perfect for fans of Gail Carson Levine.” (Goodreads review)   Before I launch into my thoughts about this book, I just want to take a moment and say that I hope I get to meet Merrie Haskell someday. We both wrote our first stories at the age of seven, we both got BAs in anthropology (mine cultural, hers …

Evertrue by Brodi Ashton (Everneath #3)

Terrified for her survival, Nikki and Jack begin a desperate attempt to reverse the process using any means possible. Even Cole, who they expected to fight them at every turn, has become an unlikely ally — but how long can it last? Nikki needs to feed on Cole to survive, Cole needs Nikki to gain the throne in the Everneath, Jack needs Nikki because she is everything to him — and together, they must travel back to the Underworld to undo Nikki’s fate and make her mortal once more. But Cole isn’t the only one with plans for Nikki: the Queen has not forgotten Nikki’s treachery, and she wants her destroyed for good. Will Nikki be forced to spend eternity in the Underworld, or does she have what it takes to bring down the Everneath once and for all? In this stunning conclusion to the Everneath trilogy, Brodi Ashton evokes the resiliency of the human spirit and the indomitable power of true love. (GoodReads) The Specs ISBN: 006207119X, hd, 368p, 2014 Balzer + Bray, YA, …

Everbound by Brodi Ashton (Everneath #2)

Nikki Beckett could only watch as her boyfriend, Jack, sacrificed himself to save her, taking her place in the Tunnels of the Everneath for eternity — a debt that should’ve been hers. She’s living a borrowed life, and she doesn’t know what to do with the guilt. And every night Jack appears in her dreams, lost and confused and wasting away. Desperate for answers, Nikki turns to Cole, the immortal bad boy who wants to make her his queen — and the one person least likely to help. But his heart has been touched by everything about Nikki, and he agrees to assist her in the only way he can: by taking her to the Everneath himself. Nikki and Cole descend into the Everneath, only to discover that their journey will be more difficult than they’d anticipated — and more deadly. But Nikki vows to stop at nothing to save Jack — even if it means making an incredible sacrifice of her own. In this enthralling sequel to Everneath, Brodi Ashton tests the bonds of …

The One by Kiera Cass (The Selection #3)

The Selection changed the lives of thirty-five girls forever. And now, the time has come for one winner to be chosen. America never dreamed she would find herself anywhere close to the crown—or to Prince Maxon’s heart. But as the competition approaches its end and the threats outside the palace walls grow more vicious, America realizes just how much she stands to lose—and how hard she’ll have to fight for the future she wants. From the very first page of The Selection, this #1 New York Times bestselling series has captured readers’ hearts and swept them away on a captivating journey… Now, in The One, Kiera Cass delivers a satisfying and unforgettable conclusion that will keep readers sighing over this electrifying fairy-tale long after the final page is turned. I stumbled onto The Selection series right around the time The Elite was coming out, or about to come out. I absolutely adored The Selection and The Elite was a great follow-up. So, like Cass’ other readers, I eagerly awaited for the finale to be published in May …

The Goddess Inheritance by Aimee Carter (Goddess Test #3)

Love or life. Henry or their child. The end of her family or the end of the world. Kate must choose. During nine months of captivity, Kate Winters has survived a jealous goddess, a vengeful Titan and a pregnancy she never asked for. Now the Queen of the Gods wants her unborn child, and Kate can’t stop her–until Cronus offers a deal. In exchange for her loyalty and devotion, the King of the Titans will spare humanity and let Kate keep her child. Yet even if Kate agrees, he’ll destroy Henry, her mother and the rest of the council. And if she refuses, Cronus will tear the world apart until every last god and mortal is dead. With the fate of everyone she loves resting on her shoulders, Kate must do the impossible: find a way to defeat the most powerful being in existence, even if it costs her everything. Even if it costs her eternity. (Goodreads description) The Specs ISBN: 0373210671, pb, 303pp, 2013 Harlequin Teen, YA, fantasy, mythology, romance SPOILERS AHEAD!!!!       …

Goddess Interrupted by Aimee Carter (Goddess Test #2)

Kate Winters has won immortality. But if she wants a life with Henry in the Underworld, she’ll have to fight for it. Becoming immortal wasn’t supposed to be the easy part. Though Kate is about to be crowned Queen of the Underworld, she’s as isolated as ever. And despite her growing love for Henry, ruler of the Underworld, he’s becoming ever more distant and secretive. Then, in the midst of Kate’s coronation, Henry is abducted by the only being powerful enough to kill him: the King of the Titans. As the other gods prepare for a war that could end them all, it is up to Kate to save Henry from the depths of Tartarus. But in order to navigate the endless caverns of the Underworld, Kate must enlist the help of the one person who is the greatest threat to her future. Henry’s first wife, Persephone. (GoodReads description) The Specs ISBN: 0373210450, pb, 305pp, 2012 Harlequin Teen, YA, fantasy, romance, mythology Growing up, I thought that I was the cleverest kid on the block because …

The Girls at the Kingfisher Club by Genevieve Valentine

In a not-so-quiet townhouse, somewhere in Manhattan, there are twelve Hamilton sisters, shut away from the world by an embarrassed father. The eldest, Jo, is a surrogate mother figure, de facto leader (earning her the moniker “The General”), and dance instructor. It is the Roaring Twenties and the girls know every popular dance from the Foxtrot to the Charleston. Having discovered a way to disappear unseen in the twilight hours, the sisters visit a string of speakeasies, dancing and flirting, and finally settling on The Kingfisher Club as home. When a police raid thrusts Jo into the path of an old flame, Tom, the gossiping talk about the Hamilton sisters reaches their father’s ears. Desperate to be rid of them, he forms a plan to marry them all off. It’s up to Jo to circumvent their father’s plans but at what cost to her heart? There is a lot of territory to cover with twelve girls and their love lives over a period of eight years and we get Jo’s impression of each sister in staccato …

The Amaranth Enchantment by Julie Berry

I’ve been meaning to read this for well over a year now.  Each time I see the cover of the girl holding the beautiful, magical flower, I’ve thought “hmm, maybe later.” Then finally, that day came.  While this novel is firmly rooted in YA fantasy (with some of the usual characteristics), I would classify it as a sub-genre of fairy tale. We have a heroine, a handsome prince, and a “witch”. There’s a conflict that separates them being together and the witch helps the heroine overcome the obstacles, yada yada yada. It’s a faraway kingdom that doesn’t exist in our modern world (typical fairy tale setting). What I find so fascinating about this book is that it’s not really a Cinderella retelling (although there is some tongue-in-cheek nods to it).  The witch isn’t really a fairy godmother either.  My local library actually has this classified under “extraterrestrials” in the database, believe it or not, which made me do a double-take. The Amaranth Enchantment is a stand-alone title. It’s the first book by Julie Berry that …

The Thinking Woman’s Guide to Real Magic by Emily Croy Barker

Nora Fischer’s dissertation is stalled and her boyfriend is about to marry another woman. During a miserable weekend at a friend’s wedding, Nora wanders off and walks through a portal into a different world where she’s transformed from a drab grad student into a stunning beauty. Before long, she has a set of glamorous new friends and her romance with gorgeous, masterful Raclin is heating up. It’s almost too good to be true. Then the elegant veneer shatters. Nora’s new fantasy world turns darker, a fairy tale gone incredibly wrong. Making it here will take skills Nora never learned in graduate school. Her only real ally—and a reluctant one at that—is the magician Aruendiel, a grim, reclusive figure with a biting tongue and a shrouded past. And it will take her becoming Aruendiel’s student—and learning magic herself—to survive. When a passage home finally opens, Nora must weigh her “real life” against the dangerous power of love and magic. Book 27 of this year’s Goodreads challenge led me to the world of Orsland, a world created …