The Afterlife of Holly Chase

I received this book for free from Publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

The Afterlife of Holly ChaseThe Afterlife of Holly Chase by Cynthia Hand
Published by HarperTeen on 10/24/17
Genres: Fantasy & Magic, Young Adult
Pages: 400
Format: eARC
Source: Publisher
Buy the Book
ReviewedbyDani

On Christmas Eve five years ago, seventeen-year-old Holly Chase was visited by three Ghosts who showed her how selfish and spoiled she’d become. They tried to convince her to mend her ways. She didn’t. And then she died.

Now she’s stuck working for the top-secret company Project Scrooge—as their latest Ghost of Christmas Past. So far, Holly’s afterlife has been miserable. But this year’s Scrooge is different. This year’s Scrooge might change everything…

Short and Sweet

Every year Project Scrooge picks a new Scrooge to help reform. Holly Chase our main character learned the hard way that not changing her scrooge ways would result in an afterlife she wasn’t expecting. Now as the Ghost of Christmas Past, Holly is tasked with helping other scrooges change their ways, but this years scrooge is different from the ones before.

Characters

Holly: Holly is an interesting character, I didn’t think she was the best main character she came across as if she thought she was better than everyone else and I just couldn’t relate to her. I thought she was an interesting character because she was a failed scrooge and is now working at project scrooge to help other scrooges change their ways before its too late, but even though you would think that because she got the job of Ghost of Christmas Past maybe she would be nicer or something… shes not. I think that’s what disappointed me the most about her character was the lack of character development throughout the story.

Ethan: This years scrooge and Holly’s love interest. Ethan is wealthy and like Holly thinks he’s better than other people he was also just mean. There’s not much else to say about Ethan he was shown in a good light probably because the book was in Holly’s POV and she thought that they were a match made in heaven.

Stephanie: Stephanie is an intern at project scrooge for the year and becomes Holly’s assistant. I loved Stephanie she was optimistic and happy, but I felt bad because Holly did not treat her well.

Boz: Holly’s boss and the man who runs project scrooge.

Romance

Holly and Ethan: This relationship was built upon lies. So people that work for project scrooge aren’t supposed to meet the scrooges until Christmas morning when the project takes place. Holly decides to break the rules and meet with Ethan even though she knows she shouldn’t, so she takes it upon herself to enlist her Stephanie’s help and find Ethan’s daily schedule and find out when he’s being watched and where he goes during the day. When Holly finally meets Ethan she goes by Victoria. Let me just say Holly isn’t the only one telling lies in this relationship, Ethan lies about his family and its just so hard to read because you’re basically just reading about two people who “really like” each other but are lying to each others faces. This relationship was meant to crumble from the very beginning.

Quotes

~ “He came from a good family, and by good I mean rich.” Is this quote not ridiculous to anyone else? Literally! Like he came from a good family because they’re rich?! At the very moment I read this from the book I had to put it down. This is how I knew Holly Chase did not change ONE BIT.

My Thoughts

~ Let me just say that I love the idea of this book, to have a project scrooge and to help scrooges find the good in themselves. I just don’t understand why they would hire Holly when she herself hasn’t changed (I mean I find out in the end).

~ I didn’t like the romance, like I said earlier the two may have liked each other but it was all lies, well maybe not for Holly because she actually liked him but still she was lying about who she was.

~ I did like the other characters that we meet in the book like Grant and Marty from Holly’s team.

~ It was interesting to see how things progressed in the book and how the members of project scrooge found out information about the scrooges life.

~ I will say I did like the ending it surprised me and I wasn’t expecting it.

Overall

I think this would be a good book for the holiday season for some, but unfortunately I wasn’t a big fan. I really wanted to like this book but some of the things that happened just put me off. What I would have liked was more character development from Holly, because she honestly didn’t change and I felt like I was seeing her be a during most of the book. Overall it was an okay book, it’s not one I would read again though.

SmileRatingsSmileRatingsSmileRatings

 

SEPTEMBER WRAP UP 2017

WonderlandThoughts

I think school is getting the best of me because the amount of books I’m reading is not a lot. I’ve only read two for the month of September. So here they are:

The Hanging Girl by Eileen Cook

The Hanging Girl

Torn by Erica O’Rourke

Torn

THE HANGING GIRL By Eileen Cook

I received this book for free from Publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

THE HANGING GIRL By Eileen CookThe Hanging Girl by Eileen Cook
Published by HMH Books for Young Readers on 10/3/17
Genres: Mystery & Detective, Thrillers, Young Adult
Pages: 320
Format: eARC
Source: Publisher
Buy the Book
ReviewedbyDani

Skye Thorn has given tarot card readings for years, and now her psychic visions are helping the police find the town’s missing golden girl. It’s no challenge—her readings have always been faked, but this time she has some insider knowledge. The kidnapping was supposed to be easy—no one would get hurt and she’d get the money she needs to start a new life. But a seemingly harmless prank has turned dark, and Skye realizes the people she’s involved with are willing to kill to get what they want and she must discover their true identity before it’s too late.

Short and Sweet

Skye Thorn is known in her high school for giving tarot readings and having psychic visions, the thing is Skye has always faked these abilities. One of Skye’s classmates gets kidnapped and Skye has insider information about what’s going on. The police are trusting Skye’s “psychic visions” to help bring Paige home, but things turn ugly when this kidnapping that seemed like a prank turns serious. Now Skye must find out who’s behind what’s happening before it’s to late.

Characters

Skye: Our main character who fakes her psychic abilities. Skye takes part in this prank to kidnap Paige because when all is said and done she’s supposed to receive some of the ransom money and start a new life. I liked Skye and then again I didn’t. I’m glad she realized when she was in too deep but it was already to late at that point. We learn a lot about Skye and her troubling past and why some of the kids at school don’t trust her.

Paige: During the book we get a few chapters from Paige, it mostly shows her writing her experience. I felt bad for Paige because she was targeted for this “prank” because her father has money and she’s the most popular girl in school.

Pluto: The guy Skye is working with to pull off this prank, there’s not much we know about him except for the fact that he’s calling the shots.

My Thoughts

~ I really liked the concept of the book, Skye trying to make some money and things go wrong and now she has to figure out who’s behind everything. Is it the most original idea? No, but I still enjoyed reading this book.

~ Skye’s mom is also a psychic which I found interesting because I didn’t know if I could trust her or not because Skye would keep saying that her visions were off most of the time or she would call her mom a fake.

~ Skye also has a best friend, Drew. Drew was good supportive friend and we see how their friendship was kind of a motive for Skye to even take part in the kidnapping.

~ I felt worried for Skye while reading the book because she was lying a lot and she had to keep her story straight and I was interested to see how that worked out for her.

~ There were a few twist in the book that I enjoyed, but I did not like the ending at all it wasn’t satisfying to me. It just didn’t end right for me personally, I wanted more.

Overall

I thought this was a good book, it was short and easy to read through. At one point I was so confused at who could have been behind all of this because there were so many twists. I’ll be honest and say this isn’t my favorite book but it wasn’t bad, so if you like mysteries with a lot of twists then this may be the book for you!

SmileRatingsSmileRatingsSmileRatings

THE BEAUTIFUL AND THE CURSED By Page Morgan

I received this book for free from Reviewer Purchase in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

THE BEAUTIFUL AND THE CURSED By Page MorganThe Beautiful and the Cursed by Page Morgan
Series: The Dispossessed #1
Published by Delacorte Press on 5/14/13
Genres: Historical, Paranormal, Romance, Young Adult
Pages: 352
Format: Paperback
Source: Reviewer Purchase
Buy the Book
ReviewedbyDani

After a bizarre accident, Ingrid Waverly is forced to leave London with her mother and her younger sister, Gabby, trading a world full of fancy dresses and society events for the unfamiliar city of Paris.
In Paris there are no grand balls or glittering parties for Ingrid, and, disturbingly, the house her twin brother, Grayson, was sent ahead to secure for the family isn't a house at all. It's an abandoned abbey, its roof lined with stone gargoyles that could almost be mistaken for living, breathing creatures.
And Grayson is missing.
Yet no one seems worried about his whereabouts save for Luc, a devastatingly handsome servant at their new home.
Ingrid is sure her twin isn't dead--she can feel it deep in her soul--but she knows he's in grave danger, and that it's up to her and Gabby to find him before all hope is lost.
The path to Grayson will be twisted, leading Ingrid to discover dark secrets and otherworldly truths that, once uncovered, can never again be buried.

Short and Sweet

After a weird accident Ingrid Waverly, her mother, and younger sister leave London and move to Paris. When they arrive they discover that Grayson, Ingrid’s twin brother who was to have arrived earlier has gone missing. Ingrid and Gabby vow to find their brother before its too late.

Characters

Ingrid: Our main character who discovers that her brother is missing and that there may be more to the accident that happened in London than she thought. Ingrid was a good main character she cared about those closest to her. The things she learns about in Paris are interesting it makes her think about things from all angles.

Gabby: Gabby is Ingrid and Grayson’s younger sister. Gabby as the younger sibling is impulsive, but she does mean well.

Romance

Ingrid and Luc: I loved these two Luc clearly cares a lot about Ingrid more than he has for anyone before and I think that these feelings have him confused as to why he feels this way mainly because gargoyles only protect their charges because its their job, but there’s something different about the way he feels when it comes to Ingrid.

Gabby and Nolan: I don’t know which couple I liked more Gabby and Nolan or Ingrid and Luc. There was romantic tension between Gabby and Nolan and I just wanted them to be together so bad! Nolan kept pushing Gabby away and she had feelings for him and this made me ship them.

My Thoughts

~ I’ve read a lot of paranormal books and this is the first one I’ve read that had gargoyles in it. I loved it, this book was so different and I loved the setting of 1899 Paris.

~ Each of the characters were enjoyable and I also liked their interactions with each other and how they all came together, because of Graysons disappearance.

~ The mystery surrounding Grayson’s disappearance was so intriguing to me, we do get some chapters in his point of view but we don’t know who took him and why.

~ I liked that there were two different groups the gargoyles and the alliance. They don’t like each other but they try to stay on good terms with each other in case they need each others help.

~ There’s also demons coming from the underworld trying to get to the sisters, because the same thing that took Grayson is looking for his sisters next.

~ One thing that really surprised me was when one of the characters turns out to be one we can’t trust.

Overall

This was an amazing read, I’m excited to read the sequel, which is on my shelf. The ending was great and left me wanting more and to see what these siblings will have to endure next. I think this is a great book for people who like paranormal books with a little bit of a mystery.

SmileRatingsSmileRatingsSmileRatingsSmileRatings

ONE DARK THRONE By Kendare Blake

I received this book for free from Publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

ONE DARK THRONE By Kendare BlakeOne Dark Throne by Kendare Blake
Series: Three Dark Crowns #2
Published by HarperTeen on 9/19/17
Genres: Action & Adventure, Fantasy & Magic, Romance, Young Adult
Pages: 464
Format: eARC
Source: Publisher
Buy the Book
ReviewedbyDani

With the unforgettable events of the Quickening behind them and the Ascension Year underway, all bets are off. Katharine, once the weak and feeble sister, is stronger than ever before. Arsinoe, after discovering the truth about her powers, must figure out how to make her secret talent work in her favor without anyone finding out. And Mirabella, once thought to be the strongest sister of all and the certain Queen Crowned, faces attacks like never before—ones that put those around her in danger she can’t seem to prevent.

Short and Sweet

After the events that took place during the Quickening the Ascension year is in progress and things have changed. Katharine is different after returning to the manor, Mirabella doesn’t seem to be the front runner anymore, and Arsinoe is trying to figure out what to do with her new found skill. The question is which sister will prevail and take the crown and the throne?

Characters

Mirabella: The elemental queen, in the last book she was thought to be the strongest of the sisters but now that seems to be uncertain. Mirabella tries to see the good in her sisters and likes to think about memories from when they were younger, but this makes her apprehensive about the fact that she has to kill them.

Arsinoe: Our naturalist queen, we find out in the last book that she’s actually a poisoner which makes sense as to why her naturalist gift never seemed to show. Now Arsinoe is trying to figure out how this new skill works and how to use it in her advantage.

Katharine: The poisoner queen, oh how things have changed with Katharine. Katharine was one of the weaker queens but after climbing her way out of The Breccia Domain she’s back with a vengeance and the people on the island now call her, ‘the undead queen’.

Romance

Arsinoe and Billy: I love these two so much! Arsinoe still won’t admit how she feels about him to his face but Billy doesn’t give up easily. He was sent away to Rolanth to be Mirabella’s taster but he was always thinking about Arsinoe. These two cared about each other and it was my favorite romance of the book.

Katharine and Nicolas: Nicolas was one of Katharine’s suitors and one she liked. I honestly think Katharine only got with Nicolas to get back at Pietyr.

Jules and Joseph: After the events of the last book Jules is still trying to find a way to forgive Joseph. Does she trust him? No. Does he still try to make an effort? Yes. Did I think these two should be together? No. Maybe in the first book, but after what he did she just couldn’t trust him I like the fact that she tried though. “So you trust me?” She turns and looks squarely into his handsome, storm-blue eyes. “Not one bit.”

Quotes

~ “This is how it is,” Arsinoe whispers. “Someone’s going to die.”

~ “I am only afraid of what I must do.”

~ “Neither of my sisters will be returning to the island. The crown and the throne are mine.”

My Thoughts

~ Arsinoe, may have a new skill as a poisoner but she knows that she has to keep this a secret and use it to her advantage at some point. For now she still uses low magic to make a bond with her bear familiar.

~ Jules is one of my favorite characters that isn’t one of the queens. She’s the best and I like her better than Bree and Elizabeth. Jules will go to the end of the Earth to try to keep Arsinoe safe. She considers herself to be Arsinoe’s guardian and its like its her full time job. I love how she looks after Arsinoe and doesn’t treat it like a ob she does it because she genuinely loves her.

~ Jules also learns that she has a second gift, she’s legion cursed which occurs when you have two gifts, shes a naturalist of course and she has the war gift. She’s just learning how to use the war gift and is determined to use it to keep the ones she loves safe.

~ Mirabella is trying to wrap her head around the things that occurred during the quickening. She knows that she has to kill her sisters before they kill her. She plans on starting with Arsinoe for sending her bear after her and then Katharine.

~ Katharine is very determined to kill her sisters. A lot has changed with her but I guess thats what happens when you ‘come back from the dead.’ She was eating a lot of poison so much so that she ends up becoming poison.

~ The events of the quickening set a lot of events into motion in this book.

~ I loved Mirabella and Arsinoe in this book. Mirabella doesn’t want to kill her sisters and Arsinoe knows that she may not stand a chance. I liked Katharine in the last book because she seemed sweet but she was blood thirsty and it was a little overwhelming.

Overall

Can the sequel be better than the first book? Yes and this series is the proof! It only seems to get better and I can’t wait until the third book is released. What’ll happen next with these girls, is what I need to know! So much happened in this book and I’m ready to find out whats going to happen. Love this series and I think its a MUST READ pick up the first two books now!

SmileRatingsSmileRatingsSmileRatingsSmileRatingsSmileRatings

AUGUST WRAP UP 2017

WonderlandThoughts

September is here, which means fall is too! I love the fall season. I don’t remember how many books I read in August but it doesn’t feel like a lot. I’ve been MIA mainly because school and work has kept me super busy, but hopefully I can manage my time a little better this month and get a lot of reading done! Heres my list for August:

With Malice by Eileen Cook

With Malice

The Beautiful and the Cursed by Page Morgan

The Beautiful and the Cursed

UNFILTERED: NO SHAME, NO REGRETS, JUST ME. By Lily Collins

I received this book for free from Reviewer Purchase in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

UNFILTERED: NO SHAME, NO REGRETS, JUST ME. By Lily CollinsUnfiltered: No Shame, No Regrets, Just Me. by Lily Collins
Published by HarperCollins on 3/7/17
Genres: Autobiography, Contemporary, Nonfiction
Pages: 240
Format: Hardcover
Source: Reviewer Purchase
Buy the Book
ReviewedbyDani

For the first time ever, Lily shares her life and her own deepest secrets, underlining that every single one of us experiences pain and heartbreak. We all understand what it’s like to live in the light and in the dark. For Lily, it’s about making it through to the other side, where you love what you see in the mirror and where you embrace yourself just as you are. She's learned that all it takes is one person standing up and saying something for everyone else to realize they’re not alone.

By turns hilarious and heartbreaking, Lily’s honest voice will inspire you to be who you are and say what you feel. It’s time to claim your voice! It’s time to live your life unfiltered.

Short and Sweet Review

Unfiltered was about Lily’s life and personal experiences, each chapter touches on a different subject and Lily’s experience and how she dealt with this issue. This was a book that I’m sure a lot of readers can relate to, there’s a lot of subjects that Lily covers in this book: relationships, self-love, eating disorders. Collins did a great job at just putting it all out there she wasn’t afraid to address what has happened in her past and how it has changed the present. There’s definitely an emphasis on making it to the other side, Lily went through things that are pretty dark but she tries to focus on how she has come out of that, she is also about self-acceptance and loving yourself flaws and all. My favorite chapter in this book was “We Accept the Love We Think We Deserve,” I think Collins did an amazing job at making such personal things in her life relatable to the audience. Unfiltered is one of the first book of memoirs or essays that I’ve read and I was impressed. I loved how personal it got and it felt like I got to know Lily on another level and even if I couldn’t relate to some of the essays it was interesting to see how she navigated through some of these issues and how she’s dealt with them. I recommend this book so pick it up if you have the chance!

SmileRatingsSmileRatingsSmileRatingsSmileRatingsHalf

RUTHLESS By Carolyn Lee Adams

I received this book for free from Reviewer Purchase in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

RUTHLESS By Carolyn Lee AdamsRuthless by Carolyn Lee Adams
Published by Simon Pulse on 7/14/15
Genres: Mystery & Detective, Thrillers, Young Adult
Pages: 257
Format: Hardcover
Source: Reviewer Purchase
Buy the Book
ReviewedbyDani

Ruth Carver has always competed like her life depends on it. Ambitious. Tough. Maybe even mean. It’s no wonder people call her Ruthless.

When she wakes up with a concussion in the bed of a moving pickup trick, she realizes she has been entered into a contest she can’t afford to lose.

At a remote, rotting cabin deep in the Blue Ridge Mountains, Ruth’s blindfold comes off and she comes face-to-face with her captor. A man who believes his mission is to punish bad girls like Ruth. A man who has done this six times before.

The other girls were never heard from again, but Ruth won’t go down easy. She escapes into the wilderness, but her hunter is close at her heels. That’s when the real battle begins. That’s when Ruth must decide just how far she’ll go in order to survive.

Back home, they called her Ruthless. They had no idea just how right they were.

Short and Sweet Review

Ruth Carver wakes up and finds herself with a concussion and in the bed of a truck, come to find out shes been taken by a mysterious man and is now in a dangerous game of cat and mouse. Ruth’s kidnapper is a psychopath and Ruth just happened to be his type, but what he doesn’t know is that he underestimated Ruth and that shes intelligent and willing to do anything to make it out of this game alive. This was definitely a thriller Ruth is in the woods alone with no one to help her trying to get away from her kidnapper. Ruth had amazing survival skills which helped her outsmart her kidnapper. We learn the kidnappers backstory and it’s sad but explains why he is the way he is. At some points Ruth does want to give up but she remembers what shes fighting for and continues to push on. While reading this book I did become worried for Ruth she was running from a kidnapper who seemed to know what he was doing and when she did seem to get away that’s when I got nervous for her because I was just wondering when he would pop up again. The writing in this book was great and the plot had me hooked it was just so intense. This was a great book if you like thrillers I would recommend this book for you!

SmileRatingsSmileRatingsSmileRatingsSmileRatingsHalf

WITH MALICE By Eileen Cook

I received this book for free from Reviewer Purchase in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

WITH MALICE By Eileen CookWith Malice by Eileen Cook
Published by HMH Books for Young Readers on 6/7/16
Genres: Contemporary, Mystery & Detective, Thrillers, Young Adult
Pages: 320
Format: Paperback
Source: Reviewer Purchase
Buy the Book
ReviewedbyDani

Eighteen-year-old Jill Charron's senior trip to Italy was supposed to be the adventure of a lifetime. And then the accident happened. Waking up in a hospital room, her leg in a cast, stitches in her face, and a big blank canvas where the last 6 weeks should be, Jill comes to discover she was involved in a fatal accident in her travels abroad. She was jetted home by her affluent father in order to receive quality care. Care that includes a lawyer. And a press team. Because maybe the accident...wasn't an accident. Wondering not just what happened but what she did, Jill tries to piece together the events of the past six weeks before she loses her thin hold on her once-perfect life.

Short and Sweet

Jill’s trip to Italy was supposed to be the time of her life, but when she wakes up in the hospital with no memory of the last six weeks she’s confused to learn that she’s suspect number one in the murder of her best friend. Now Jill has to try to remember what happened during her time in Italy and prove her innocence.

Characters

Jill: Our main character who doesn’t remember anything from her trip to Italy especially the accident. Jill was an okay character, she was frustrated during most of the book because she couldn’t remember anything that would be useful to the case. The one thing that bothered me about Jill was the fact that she thought she could never intentionally hurt Simone, like how would you know?

Simone: Jill’s best friend, who also went on the trip to Italy but didn’t make it back alive. The only thing we really know about Simone was that she was friends with Jill and that her parents thought Jill was the one who always set up the plans that had these two girls up to no good.

Romance

In America Jill does not have a boyfriend from what I read in the book it seems like Jill stayed away from boys like the plague. But you know what happens in Italy stays in Italy unless the boy you were involved with also becomes a suspect in the murder investigation. In Italy Jill met Nico an Italian student who works as a guide for the program Jill is in. We don’t really learn much about this relationship because Jill can’t remember anything, but we know for sure that these two got together.

My Thoughts

~ My favorite thing about this book was getting to see the police transcripts and learning other people’s perspectives on what happened in Italy with Jill and Simone especially because Jill doesn’t remember.

~ There’s a lot of twists in this book mainly because whenever Jill does feel like she remembers something we don’t know if it actually happened or if she was being influenced by what shes reading in the news about the accident.

~ Our setting in the book is a hospital and then a rehab facility that Jill stays in while she recovers. Jill also takes some therapy classes while there and I liked reading about these sessions because Jill tries to dig a little deeper into her feelings and her life.

~ Jill meets Anna in the rehab facility and I liked her character more than Jill. Anna seemed to be a realist and thought logically while Jill seemed to think everything would be okay.

Overall

With Malice was a good book overall, I didn’t enjoy the ending that much I wish there was more I feel like it was kind of rushed. I liked that the book had me guessing as to what happened in Italy and we have to piece it together, could Jill murder her best friend or not?

SmileRatingsSmileRatingsSmileRatingsSmileRatingsHalf

ELEMENTALS: THE WRATH OF THE FURY By Michelle Madow

I received this book for free from Reviewer Purchase in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

ELEMENTALS: THE WRATH OF THE FURY By Michelle MadowElementals: The Wrath of the Fury by Michelle Madow
Series: Elementals
Published by Dreamscape Publishing on 2/23/17
Genres: Fantasy & Magic, Mythology, Young Adult
Pages: 36
Format: eBook
Source: Reviewer Purchase
Buy the Book
ReviewedbyDani

Everything changed on the night of the Olympian Comet.

I’ve always known that I’m a witch. But I didn’t expect to discover that I have a mysterious power unheard of amongst my kind. My best friend Garrett — who I’ve secretly been wanting to become more than a friend — has one of these powers too.

We know something big is going on. But we didn’t realize that there are ancient creatures searching for us, and that they’ll kill us for what we are…

Short and Sweet

The Wrath of the Fury is a short story in the Elementals universe. In the book we meet new characters, Sydney, Garrett, and Kayla and these characters are in Las Vegas. Our characters are warned in the beginning not to go out because of how dangerous it might be but our characters go out anyway. Afterwards the characters run into some trouble and have decisions to make. I liked this short story a lot, it was fun to be back in the Elementals universe. There was action and even though it was short it was a great insight into the world. Sydney was a good character and was smart too I also liked her friends and I think it would be nice to see them in another book. This book was great and can be read before, during, or after reading the series.

SmileRatingsSmileRatingsSmileRatingsSmileRatingsHalf