Review: The Genesis of Evangeline by Rachel Jonas

About the book:

Wolves, dragon shifters, and a fallen kingdom destined to rise again.

Evie Callahan is positive there’s something strange going on in Seaton Falls, her new home. The locals are bigger, stronger, and faster than most. That includes Nick, the boy next door who’s become her silver lining in this godforsaken town.

She wants to trust her instincts–about Nick, about what she suspects in Seaton Falls–but rumors of wolves and dragon shifters makes it hard to tell what’s real. With a history of odd dreams and the nagging sense that she’s never belonged, Evie fears she’s losing touch with reality. Her concern only grows when someone who’s haunted these dreams is suddenly tangible… and claims to hold the key to unlocking her true identity.

Finding out her entire life has been a lie is scary enough, but what’s downright terrifying is discovering who she’s destined to become.

Evie’s much more than your average, seventeen-year-old girl.

And this is her genesis.

Cover of Rachel Jonas' The Genesis of Evangeline

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Review by Katy Haye:

The Genesis of Evangeline is a YA story about shifters. So far, so ordinary. But Rachel Jonas has delivered some glorious twists on the usual tropes. I loved her characters, and having the story narrated by both Evie and Nick provided real breadth to the intriguing world of Seaton Falls.

The sheer scale of what’s going on in this far-from-ordinary town was fabulous, and the hints of the bigger shifter world made me want to know more.

The romance between Nick and Evie was lovely, and beautifully handled, especially when things became a little triangular (I’m interested to see how that one works out!).

It loses a point, I’m afraid, because I am a ridiculous stickler and there were plenty of proofing issues – its and it’s, lie and lay, amongst others. But that aside, it’s still worth reading because it’s an intriguing story and a delightful romance.

Love urban fantasy? Try Katy’s The Last Gatekeeper: Zan knows she’s different.          Today she discovers why. 

Posted in families, fantasy, fiction, paranormal, review, Romance, supernatural, teen, YA, Young Adult | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Review: The Girl from Everywhere by Heidi Heilig

About the book:

Nix has spent her entire life aboard her father’s ship, sailing across the centuries, across the world, across myth and imagination.

As long as her father has a map for it, he can sail to any time, any place, real or imagined: nineteenth-century China, the land from One Thousand and One Nights, a mythic version of Africa. Along the way they have found crewmates and friends, and even a disarming thief who could come to mean much more to Nix.

But the end to it all looms closer every day.

Her father is obsessed with obtaining the one map, 1868 Honolulu, that could take him back to his lost love, Nix’s mother. Even though getting it—and going there—could erase Nix’s very existence.

For the first time, Nix is entering unknown waters.

She could find herself, find her family, find her own fantastical ability, her own epic love.

Or she could disappear.

Cover of Heidi Heilig's Girl from Everywhere

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Review by Katy Haye:

I picked up The Girl from Everywhere when it was recommended to me. Oh my, what a treasure it is!

The writing is beautiful, Nix is a wonderful character, and her shipmates were delightfully defined and different. Little-known myth and folklore were woven through a story that was blissfully out of the ordinary, and the plotting was absolutely flawless. I wasn’t initially convinced as to why Nix was so determined not to step back through time and find her mother, but the rest of the story carried me through until that became clear.

Part time-travel adventure, part romance, part heist story, The Girl from Everywhere is a complete delight. Highly recommended.

Posted in families, fantasy, fiction, friendship, historical, magic, mythology, review, Romance, teen, time travel, YA, Young Adult | Leave a comment

New release klaxon!

Get out the champagne and the party-poppers, readers! Piranha Katy Haye has released her steampunk series, A Clockwork War, in a boxed set edition. If like to sit and binge your way through a series once it’s complete, here’s your chance to get the entire series at 40% off the price of the individual books.

Katy Haye's A Clockwork War: the complete series

Imagine Queen Elizabeth I never ruled.
England and Scotland never unified.
It’s 1845 and the two countries are once more at war.

Step into a sensational steampunk world with Clara, who only wants to keep her brothers safe, but gets embroiled in adventure and treachery when she goes to London to build a device that should bring an end to the war.

“one of the best steampunk stories I’ve ever read” – Amazon review

“mystery, a quick plot, fun characters and a giant twist (or two) – Amazon review

Grab your copy now (to buy, or use your KU subscription).

Posted in Book blitz, families, fiction, historical, Romance, steampunk, teen, YA, Young Adult | Tagged , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Review: The Reprisal by Kelly St Clare

About the book:

Earth is nothing like Romy expected. A disappointing fact made clear far too many times.

Over the last year and a half, her world has shattered again and again, along with her sanity, and now Knot 27 is split in two with no sign of reconciliation.

There is no end in sight.

When the leader of their rebel movement steps down, the man Romy loves takes over the role of commander-general.

They are outnumbered. They are outgunned.

Not only are the Mandate Members as deprived of humanity as ever, another lethal player has taken the field.

All it takes is a click of a button, and everyone she loves will die.

Cover of Kelly St Clare's The Reprisal

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Review by Katy Haye:

The After trilogy has been such fun from start to finish, I’ve loved every moment. Romy is a fabulous character and the relationships between the knot mates grew more complex in a pleasing manner in this, final volume. There was the usual streak of humour as the knot got to grips with aspects of normal human life they’d missed out on as space soldiers, Romy was a joy to spend time with, and Atlas was, hmm, gorgeous as ever.

The plotting was excellent, with lots of tense moments when I wasn’t sure who was going to get – and keep – the upper hand. The resolution was clever as well as heart-breaking and I’m genuinely sorry I’m not going to get any more time to spend in these characters’ company.

This is a stonking good read, grab a copy now!

Katy Haye writes speculative YA fiction. Katy’s The Clockwork War, set in an alternate, war-torn 1840s England with a mechanical genius for a heroine, a dastardly duke and a hero who isn’t at all as he appears, is the first novel in her complete steampunk series.

Posted in fantasy, fiction, friendship, review, Romance, sci-fi, teen, YA, Young Adult | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

Series Review: Fallen World series by Megan Crewe

The Way We Fall (Book 1)

About the book:

It starts with an itch you just can’t shake. Then comes a fever and a tickle in your throat. A few days later, you’ll be blabbing your secrets and chatting with strangers like they’re old friends. Three more, and the paranoid hallucinations kick in.

And then you’re dead.

When sixteen-year-old Kaelyn lets her best friend leave for school without saying goodbye, she never dreams that she might not see him again. But then a strange virus begins to sweep through her small island community, infecting young and old alike. As the dead pile up, the government quarantines the island: no one can leave, and no one can come back.

Those still healthy must fight for the island’s dwindling supplies, or lose all chance of survival. As everything familiar comes crashing down, Kaelyn joins forces with a former rival and discovers a new love in the midst of heartbreak. When the virus starts to rob her of friends and family, she clings to the belief that there must be a way to save the people she holds dearest.

Because how will she go on if there isn’t?

Megan Crewe's apocalyptic, The Way We Fall

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Review by Katy Haye:

I loved this book! Kaelyn was a fabulous character – out of place and trying to remake herself to fit in whilst missing her best friend fiercely. The Way We Fall is an excellent apocalyptic story, with an unpleasantly convincing take on what the end of the world would do to people and societies. But it’s the emotion that really made this story stand out. Without melodrama or explosions, The Way We Fall cut my heart into pieces and put it back together.

I moved straight on to the next instalment…

The Lives We Lost (Book 2)

About the book:

First, the virus took Kaelyn’s friends.
Then, her family.
Now it’s taken away her home.
But she can’t look back—the life she once had is gone forever.

A deadly virus has destroyed Kaelyn’s small island community and spread beyond the quarantine. No one is safe. But when Kaelyn finds samples of a vaccine in her father’s abandoned lab, she knows there must be someone, somewhere, who can replicate it. As Kaelyn and her friends head to the mainland, they encounter a world beyond recognition. It’s not only the “friendly flu” that’s a killer—there are people who will stop at nothing to get their hands on the vaccine. How much will Kaelyn risk for an unproven cure, when the search could either destroy those she loves or save the human race?

Megan Crewe's The Lives We Lost (Fallen World series)

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Review by Katy Haye:

This series gets better and better! There were so many tense moments, and I kept thinking, “Now, can things just go right for Kaelyn and crew, please?” – but with this being an apocalypse and everything it never did! (I’m still hopeful, though.)

The writing was as powerful as ever and the relationships between the characters are exquisitely drawn and true-to-life with emotions (good and bad) flaring up in a moment.

This world provides a chillingly convincing portrayal of what an end-of-times catastrophe might be like and how people would respond (good and bad).

My TBR is reaching critical levels, but I just had to delay the next on my list so I could continue straight on to book 3.

The Worlds We Make (Book 3)

About the book:

The virus has taken away Kaelyn’s friends, her family, her home.

And now a deadly enemy threatens to take the one hope she has left: THE CURE.

When Kaelyn and her friends reached Toronto with a vaccine for the virus that has ravaged the population, they thought their journey was over. But now they’re being tracked by the Wardens, a band of survivors as lethal as the virus who are intent on stealing the vaccine no matter what the cost.

Forced onto the road again, Kaelyn and her companions discover the Centers for Disease Control in Atlanta is their best hope for finding scientists who can reproduce the vaccine. But with the virus already spreading among them, the Wardens hot on their trail, and hundreds of miles to cross, Kaelyn finds herself compromising her morals to keep her group alive. Her conscience seems a small price to pay if protects them and their precious cargo. Unless even that is not enough…

In the final installment in Megan Crewe’s captivating the Fallen World trilogy, Kaelyn is on the run from her biggest adversaries yet. While she continues to face horrific loss, her resolve is still strong. But to survive this shattered world, will she have to sacrifice all that’s left of the girl she was?

Fallen Worlds #3, Megan Crewe's The Worlds We Make

Review by Katy Haye:

I had so much else waiting to be read when I reached the end of The Lives We Lost, but everything else just had to wait a little longer because there was no way I could concentrate on anything else until I knew Kaelyn had got the vaccine where it needed to be.

Reading this series finale was a real rollercoaster as things went wrong, then right, then wrong again (and again). I felt like a soggy rag at the other end (and there may indeed have been a tear or two along the way), but this book was so good – plot, characters, writing – and the resolution Kaelyn reached was absolutely perfect.

This is a smashing series from an extremely talented writer. Strongly recommended.

Katy Haye writes speculative YA fiction. When you’re done with the end of the world, try to a warzone, instead. Katy’s The Clockwork War, set in an alternate, war-torn 1840s England with a mechanical genius for a heroine, is available for just .99.

Posted in dystopian, families, fiction, friendship, review, Romance, teen, thriller, YA, Young Adult | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Review: Witchborn by Nicholas Bowling

About the book:

It’s 1577. Queen Elizabeth I has imprisoned scheming Mary Queen of Scots, and Alyce’s mother is burned at the stake for witchcraft. Alyce kills the witchfinder and flees to London – but the chase isn’t over yet. As she discovers her own dark magic, powerful political forces are on her trail. She can’t help but wonder: why is she so important? Soon she finds herself deep in a secret battle between rival queens, the fate of England resting on her shoulders…

Cover of Nicholas Bowling's Witchborn

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Review by Katy Haye:

Witchborn reminded me a lot of Mary Hooper’s historical novels (i.e. it was excellent). The world was entirely convincing for Elizabethan London. It departed from the historical genre with the supernatural addition of witchcraft (genuine uncanny abilities, not hysteria about wise women), but I was entirely happy to go along with the fantasy elements.

Alyce and Solomon were fabulous characters and there was a colourful cast of secondary characters who breathed life into the story. The witchfinders were genuinely creepy and I enjoyed the royal twist.

A glorious piece of historical escapism.

Katy Haye writes speculative YA fiction. If you fancy more historical escapism, try Katy’s The Clockwork War. Set in an alternate, war-torn 1840s England with a mechanical genius for a heroine, this steampunk adventure is available for just .99.

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Review: Venus Shining by Jennifer Alsever

About the book:

TRIUMPHANT at last, Ember has fought her way back from the evil witch’s curse and reclaimed her identity, her sense of self. Now she must stop Xintra from hurting the boy she loves, even as she uncovers the truth behind her mother’s dark, twisted past.

REJOICING in her power over the human race, Xintra is closer than ever to achieving her father’s dream—a dream she sacrificed her own life to realize. But when key members of her team defy her, she must scramble to enact her plan before obedience gives way to anarchy.

BREAKING free from the chains that once bound her to a life of wickedness, Zoe must face the past she once sought to escape in order to save the futures of those she doomed. Will she make amends with the dead in time to save the living?

Cover of Jennifer Alsever's Venus Shining

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Review by Katy Haye:

I’ve read all three of this series now and it is FABULOUS. This was a really strong finish to the trilogy. I loved stepping into the past to see how Trinity Forest became the place it is, and how Xintra gained her power.

The characters were fabulous and the writing was as strong as ever.

My only small niggle was that the resolution and defeat of Xintra seemed a little speedy. Given how dangerous she was and how strong she’d become, I wasn’t entirely sure whether she had truly been defeated or whether she might be able to rise again. But perhaps that’s deliberate and we’ll hear more from her!

I loved Venus Shining, I loved the Trinity Forest series and I can’t wait to see what Jennifer writes next.

Katy Haye writes speculative YA fiction. The Clockwork War, set in an alternate, war-torn 1840s England with a mechanical genius for a heroine, is now out and available for just .99.


Posted in contemporary, fantasy, fiction, friendship, magic, mythology, paranormal, review, supernatural, teen, YA, Young Adult | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment