Iron Fey and Julie Kagawa Extras

I'm slow on the uptake, I know!
I didn't realise Julie had written this beautiful letter from Prince Ash to Meghan.

If you're a fan of Julie Kagawa's Iron Fey series and you haven't read it, just click on the image to view.


If you missed the Valentine's Day story heres a link to it



Here's also some links to deleted scenes from her books. Just click on the images:



 I promise to keep you updated on any new extras that come up!
(Bad Charlotte!)

Cover Reveal - The Iron Legends and The Lost Prince by Julie Kagawa

 

 Cover Reveal!


 The Iron Legends: Winter's Passage\Summer's Crossing\Iron's Prophecy (The Iron Fey #1.5, 3.5, 4.5)

 

Just announced by Harlequin Teen this is the first time Julie Kagawa's novellas have made it book format. I've read Winters Passage and Summers Crossing (being a massive Kagawa fan that I am!) but I haven't had a chance to read Iron's Prophecy.
I would expect thast after many people complained about the abrupt ending of The Iron Knight, and lack of Meghan and Ash this will make up for our wanting!


Expected publication: August 28th 2012 by Harlequin 

   ~~ AND  ~~


 

The Lost Prince (The Iron Fey #5) by

 

Set several years after the events of the first, this trilogy will star an older Ethan Chase, Meghan's brother. I'm excited to delve back into the NeverNever and find out what links Ethan to it apart from his sister.

 

Expected publication: October 23rd 2012 by Harlequin Teen  


New YA Book Publications - week ending 28th April 2012

Week Ending 28th April

** HOT PICK  **









Out 24th April 2012



Goodreads:
Everything is in ruins.

A devastating plague has decimated the population. And those who are left live in fear of catching it as the city crumbles to pieces around them.

So what does Araby Worth have to live for?

Nights in the Debauchery Club, beautiful dresses, glittery make-up . . . and tantalizing ways to forget it all.

But in the depths of the club—in the depths of her own despair—Araby will find more than oblivion. She will find Will, the terribly handsome proprietor of the club. And Elliott, the wickedly smart aristocrat. Neither boy is what he seems. Both have secrets. Everyone does.

And Araby may find something not just to live for, but to fight for—no matter what it costs her.



Review: Decoy (Assassin's Rising #1) by S.B. Sebrick

Guest Reviewed by SCD Goff
SCD specialises in reviewing self-published books, in fact she thrives on it, preferring it to more traditionally published novels. Her reviews are thorough, with good tips for debut authors on what worked well and what didn't, and overall I can guarantee your novels are in good hands.
-SCD Goff's Blog
Decoy (Assassin's Rising #1) by S.B. Sebrick
Publishers: Self-published
Published Date: Sept 2nd 2011
From: Author
My rating:
3.5 out of 5
Synopsis:
The last few grueling years of training have served Kaltor well. He’s learned to harness the magic within his body, overcome a stronger opponent, avoid capture, and everything else an assassin-in-training needs to survive.
Or so he thought.
But when those they protect at an excavation site release a demon from the Abyss itself, Kaltor realizes just how poorly prepared they all are for what’s coming. Within a single night, their mining camp of one thousand people plummets to a couple hundred terrified survivors, the majority turned against each other by the demon’s potent abilities. Then he turns towards Shaylis, the largest city in the region, for the next stage of his plan.
In a constant battle of both steel and strategy Kaltor and his friends struggle to delay, deceive and defeat their opponent, who’s spent the last thousand years planning out every detail of her assault to perfection. As the number of casualties mounts and her final plan comes to light, Kaltor is left with only one option. He must draw on the secret power within himself, knowing if his true identity is discovered, his life and the fate of the world, will be changed forever.
Review:
S.B Sebrick makes a very promising start – no introductions needed, the reader is sent smash bang into the thick of the action without so much as a by-your-leave. All in one great swoop we are plunged into a world with things like ‘Varadours’, ‘Stunts’  ‘Skin Vision’ and ‘Viper Hounds’. In fact, the author trusts his reader with a lot but risks alienating us by introducing so much so quickly.

There’s a lot going on. The hero must hide his true identity, his true powers, deal with parental relationships, friendships, and a major evil (as well as his guilt for his part in releasing this evil) – not to mention his life’s quest to find his brother. This variety helps keep the action going, and there’s certainly plenty of that. Indeed, one of the author’s skills is in describing battle scenes, which are frequent and satisfying.

On the downside, with so much going on it’s hard to feel emotionally invested in any of it. We don’t really get to know the hero, Kaltor, very well through his actions and decisions, let alone the other characters in the book. His relationships, even with his parents, feel stiff and superficial, though the author does better with Kaltor’s friends, with whom there’s an easy camaraderie and banter. 

My usual complaint stands: the manuscript could have really done with a good strong edit to iron out such problems as ‘He couldn’t understand why Crevan was still impossible to find, despite such blatant circumstances’ and ‘the second part was a lie of course, and the truth only partly so’. There’s also the occasional use of really bad English ‘“If you had not of eaten that recipe you could have been Viper Hound food long before you even got the chance to miss being with the girls.” If I could get my hands on this manuscript, I’d also want to edit out some pretty flimsy clich├ęs (“You have a good heart. Don’t ever let them take that from you” would be the first to get the sack).

Despite having a lot of the elements required for exciting, interesting fiction, the novel never quite ignites. We never really get to know about the things that matter; the hero, his loved ones, and the world he’s fighting to protect are all held at arm’s length, which is a disappointment.

If the author could learn the trick of placing his reader in the action, allowing his characters to change and grow according to decisions they must make, if he could get us to understand what’s really at stake in this fascinating world that he’s created – if he could marry all this with better dialogue and his skill with pace and world-building, we would really have something here.

Even still, there’s a lot to like from this promising author. His innovation, imagination and ability to describe action and move a story forward are excellent building blocks, and I have high hopes that more will come.
-SCD
SCD Goff's Blog
You can reach S.B. Sebrick here:

Review: Spell Bound (Hex Hall #3) by Rachel Hawkins

Spell Bound (Hex Hall #3) by Rachel Hawkins

Publishers: Hyperion
Published Date: March 13th 2012
From: Bought
My rating:
3 out of 5
Synopsis:
Just as Sophie Mercer has come to accept her extraordinary magical powers as a demon, the Prodigium Council strips them away. Now Sophie is defenseless, alone, and at the mercy of her sworn enemies—the Brannicks, a family of warrior women who hunt down the Prodigium. Or at least that’s what Sophie thinks, until she makes a surprising discovery. The Brannicks know an epic war is coming, and they believe Sophie is the only one powerful enough to stop the world from ending. But without her magic, Sophie isn’t as confident.

Sophie’s bound for one hell of a ride—can she get her powers back before it’s too late?
Review:
After loving the previous books, Hex Hall and Demonglass, Spell Bound was one of those books that had been on my TBR pile forever so I HAD to buy as soon as it was published. Sophie is such a great character and Archer was everything I wanted him to be. Cal was an interesting addition. As betrothed to Sophie I was extremely curious to see how this love triangle would pan out. But the essential part of this story is that Sophie was a witch, now a demon, and now she was up against the world. Everyone who she thought was on her side is now the enemy. But what is the real enemy going to do next to ruin Sophie's world.

I won't deny that I found this book difficult to get into. By chapter 7 I was even a little bored and started reading other books. But I came back and stuck with it to the end. Sophie began to annoy me with her snarky comments when a very serious situation was going on. The split between her feelings for Archer and Cal even made me think she would finally stick with Cal. 

But when all the classmates returned to Hex Hall the danger was real. Now Sophie had to take things seriously and work out how to deal with the evil. What happens? She ends up making out with Archer in the cellar. Really? Someones already died from trying to get out through the fog surrounding the school and she's making out?  


I realise that the atmosphere of the books is supposed to be light hearted and enjoyable but I just didn't feel it worked in this book. Maybe if there had been a fourth book then Sophie might have grown as a character but this one felt like there was so much story trying to be crammed into such a short book.


In the end I was glad I read it and had closure from all the characters but it wasn't my favourite ending to a series.

You can reach Rachel Hawkins here:

Dusty Reads #5. Meridian (Fenestra, #1) by Amber Kizer

Meridian (Fenestra #1) by Amber Kizer

Publishers: Delacorte Books for Young Readers
Published Date: August 11th 2009
From: Bought
My rating:
4 out of 5

Dusty Reads is a weekly meme hosted by Giselle at Xpresso Reads where we spotlight a book sitting in our TBR pile. My twist is that I actually, finally, read them!







Synopsis:
Half-human, half-angel, Meridian Sozu has a dark responsibility.

Sixteen-year-old Meridian has been surrounded by death ever since she can remember. As a child, insects, mice, and salamanders would burrow into her bedclothes and die. At her elementary school, she was blamed for a classmate’s tragic accident. And on her sixteenth birthday, a car crashes in front of her family home—and Meridian’s body explodes in pain.

Before she can fully recover, Meridian is told that she’s a danger to her family and hustled off to her great-aunt’s house in Revelation, Colorado. It’s there that she learns that she is a Fenestra—the half-angel, half-human link between the living and the dead. But Meridian and her sworn protector and love, Tens, face great danger from the Aternocti, a band of dark forces who capture vulnerable souls on the brink of death and cause chaos.
Review:
After 18 months I scooped Meridian off my shelf to finally read. The top was coated in dust but the pages inside were perfect, still untouched. I should have read it sooner. The sequel is now out and the third one is available as an ARC. The time was right to give it a go. Finally!

For starters the story is simple. We don't get bogged down with lots of characters. The tension is throughout and the main character Meridian is extremely likable. The enemy is known from about the middle of the book and there are many surprises that come at Meridian from the start.

Auntie and Tens are an unusual combination. Tens is Auntie's man-Friday. As Auntie is 106 years old it surprised me how capable she still is, but as she shares Meridians angelness she becomes an excellent teacher of all things worldly, and not just with the otherworldly stuff. Tens comes over as stubborn and intense. Meridian is unsure if he likes her, even as a friend. But soon they share adventures that draw them together as much more.

And there's nothing better than an evil Church cult coming to town. The cult convince the townsfolk that Auntie is to blame for the bad things that have happened in their lives. Pretty soon Auntie is being shunned from her normal society and things turn really hairy when the leader starts intimidating Meridian. Only a few people come to the rescue but they are worthy.

While all this evil is happening Meridian is learning about her gift, her craft. She's a window that allows souls to pass through to the other side. Its tricky, and she doesn't get it right in the beginning. But Tens is there to help her through it.

I loved the freshness of this story. It's not like anything I've read before and I really enjoyed it. Even Tens, who I couldn't like in the beginning, changed my mind. Auntie is wonderful too.
The ending leads us on a path to the next book and I'm excited for the start of this series!
-CBx

You can reach Amber Kizer here:

Review: The Weepers: The Other Life by Susanne Winnacker

The Weepers: The Other Life by Susanne Winnacker

Publishers: Marshall Cavendish
Published Date: May 15th 2012
From: ARC courtesy of Net Galley and Publishers
My rating:
4 out of 5
Synopsis:
3 years, 1 month, 1 week and 6 days since I’d seen daylight. One-fifth of my life.

Sherry and her family have lived sealed in a bunker in the garden since things went wrong up above. Her grandfather has been in the freezer for the last three months, her parents are at each other’s throats and two minutes ago they ran out of food.

Sherry and her father leave the safety of the bunker and find a devastated and empty LA, smashed to pieces by bombs and haunted by ‘Weepers’ - rabid humans infected with a weaponized rabies virus.

While searching for food in a supermarket, Sherry’s father disappears and Sherry is saved by Joshua, a boy-hunter. He takes her to Safe-haven, a tumble-down vineyard in the hills outside LA, where a handful of other survivors are picking up the pieces of their ‘other lives’. As she falls in love for the first time, Sherry must save her father, stay alive and keep Joshua safe when his desire for vengeance threatens them all.
Review:
A post-apocalyptic delight is The Weepers: The Other Life. Told from the point of view of 15 year old Sherry, we learn in the beginning about her life inside the bunker. She cycles to keep the electricity going for her brother and sister to watch TV. Her grandma knits constantly. Her mother and father argue again resulting in her mothers almost asthma attack. The last tin of food is on the table. The carefully calculated stored food has been eaten. Her grandpa's body is in the empty freezer. No one in her family has been out the secure bunker in 3 years, 1 month, 1 week and 6 days.  And now starvation is their biggest fear and very real possibility. Scary or what?

In the first few chapters we understand who Sherry is. She's got guts, has an enormous amount of patience, wants to shield her little sister from the horrors of present life and loves her family. She pleads for the chance to get out of the bunker and join her father on the hunt for food. But everything goes wrong when they enter a food superstore and find the enemy. The weepers are zombies. Flesh eaters who weep goo. Sometimes they're almost human-like but other times they run on all fours like animals. They are neither or part of both. 

Joshua rescues her but not until she realises that her father has been dragged off by the weepers and is possibly dead or lying injured in a nest. From here we meet the other humans still alive and living at Safe Haven who offer refuge. The next day Joshua joins her to begin the search for her father.

This book is raw, gritty and doesn't hold any punches. The very beginning sets the tone beautifully (or horribly). Sherry is a great character who often makes decisions without realising the dangers involved. But courageous is such a weak word for who she is. 

Joshua and Sherry make a great team. Yes, there's a little chemistry but Joshua comes over as someone who's missing something in his life. His family are dead and he's become the hunter of the Safe Haven party with no one to watch his back except himself. You get the impression at the beginning that he prefers this but as the layers of his life are unveiled we see the sensitive and vulnerable boy underneath. He's missing something and Sherry is exactly what he's been without. Together they work well on the hunts and adapt to each other perfectly.

The others at Safe Haven are great background characters and each has their own story. Tension is always high but generally everyone is friendly.

The story is fast-paced throughout with a few breaks for breathers but the ongoing drama had me glued to this book right until the end. The tension is gripping, you just have to find out what happens next. So much that I'd almost finished the book without realising it. The ending brings in all the back stories and provides the perfect platform for the next installment expected to be published in 2013. Let the next adventure but as thrilling as this one!

-CBx
You can reach Susanne Winnacker here:
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