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A Torch Against the Night by Sabaa Tahir #BookReview @sabaatahir

Title: A Torch Against the Night
Author: Sabaa Tahir
Published August 30th 2016 by Razorbil

Elias and Laia are running for their lives.

After the events of the Fourth Trial, Martial soldiers hunt the two fugitives as they flee the city of Serra and undertake a perilous journey through the heart of the Empire.

Laia is determined to break into Kauf - the Empire's most secure and dangerous prison - to save her brother, who is the key to the Scholars' survival. And Elias is determined to help Laia succeed, even if it means giving up his last chance at freedom.

But dark forces, human and otherworldly, work against Laia and Elias. The pair must fight every step of the way to outsmart their enemies: the bloodthirsty Emperor Marcus, the merciless Commandant, the sadistic Warden of Kauf, and, most heartbreaking of all, Helene - Elias's former friend and the Empire's newest Blood Shrike.

Bound to Marcus's will, Helene faces a torturous mission of her own - one that might destroy her: find the traitor Elias Veturius and the Scholar slave who helped him escape... and kill them both.
Make no mistake I loved A Torch Against the Night but I also raged pretty hard at some parts of the book. I love a story that can get me that involved that I’m angry and yelling at the characters. This installment had a great pace and I even had to set it down after reading the first thirty pages because I felt stressed out.

Okay I have to tell you my frustrations come in the form of Laia. I have to say in Ember I was kind of torn about her. I really liked how her character developed and felt more connected to her towards the end. In A Torch Against the Night I want to slap her multiple times. As my love for Elias grew my aggravation with Laia did too. Her actions seem to cause a lot of other people having to make sacrifices but she herself was not making any. I mean in reality what does Laia have to lose besides her life at this point. Her main goal is to save her brother which in theory is a noble cause but she seems more driven by guilt. Ugh just some of things she does...ugh.

Elias oh Elias. He was the light of my life in this book. Everything he was doing just made me like him more. I was also heartbroken over the some of the the things he has to go through. It’s hard to really say much about Elias without giving anything away but I can tell you...oh I just want him to come out on top of this whole deal. Rule the world or something.

Helene is another character that I’ve been torn about it. I like her, I don’t like her, I’m like seriously what are you doing. I have to say though her commitment to her duty is admirable and her love for her family is strong. She is one of those characters that are hard to pinpoint your feelings on until the end.

I really liked Harper. What an interesting addition and I like he takes on more of a front and center role. He’s definitely someone who intrigues me and adds to the story.

The other side characters are great and all have their roles to play.

I loved everything about this plot and the way this book gave me the feels. Not necessarily good feels all the time but that’s okay because I was completely absorbed. Just thinking about it makes me want to read it again.

Wow two more books hugh. I have to say the plot is pretty amazing so far and I can’t wait to see where it’s going. I’ve got my theories and I’m interested to see how it all fits together. For me this was a really great read. I don’t know how I’m supposed to wait for the next book. How..how!

The Collector's Society Feature Tour

The Collectors Society is one of my favorite series and I'm happy to share that love with you on this feature tour. You will find all four books information below as well as my review for The Forgotten Mountain. You can also find my reviews for The Collector's Society and The Hidden Library on my blog.

The Forgotten Mountain Review

Heather Lyons has this way of writing that makes you feel like she has managed to reach into Wonderland and really pulled Alice out. When I read other retellings sometimes my mind has trouble reconciling them with the Alice from the The Collector’s Society series. To me she is the Alice. The Forgotten Mountain keeps both Alice and the reader on their toes.

Alice is as always kick butt. Sometimes I think she is arrogant, which is okay. I like her because she isn’t this completely perfect heroine. She is most certainly driven and when she sets her mind to something, that something is going to happen and forget it if you think you can stop her.

Finn of course is as always courageous and kind. I think it’s hard to choose between Jace and him simply because they are similar. Alice knows how to pick them.

So many great supporting characters, both on the side of good and evil. There are things that some of them do that make you cringe and some that make you rejoice. Some you just continue to love (Jace) and some you just want to punch.

I have to say Grymsdyke and the A.D. really stood out to me in this installment. I loved that their characters seemed to get a chance to shine and develop more. They are dedicated but still true to their nature.

I really liked the ending. Yes it’s a cliffhanger but it made sense for what I thought was going to happen in my head. I’m glad that the series is four books instead of three because you could tell how on cue the flow is from that ending.

The Forgotten Mountain continues on with the Series great pacing and addicting action. I continue to love everything about The Collector’s Society and wish they would recruit me. It’s real right? I definitely think it’s real. I can’t wait to get my hands on the next book and see what awaits Alice, Finn and the rest of the gang.




✿ THE COLLECTORSSOCIETY (The CollectorsSociety, #1)

From the author of the Fate series and The Deep End of the Sea comes a fantastical romantic adventure that has Alice tumbling down the strangest rabbit hole yet.

After years in Wonderland, Alice has returned to England as an adult, desperate to reclaim sanity and control over her life. An enigmatic gentleman with an intriguing job offer too tempting to resist changes her plans for a calm existence, though. Soon, shes whisked to New York and initiated into the Collectors Society, a secret organization whose members confirm that famous stories are anything but straightforward and that what she knows about the world is only a fraction of the truth.

Its there she discovers villains are afoot—ones who want to shelve the lives of countless beings. Assigned to work with the mysterious and alluring Finn, Alice and the rest of the Collectors Society race against a doomsday clock in order to prevent further destruction . . . but will they make it before all their endings are erased?

* This is the first book in the adult romance/fairy tale Collectors' Society series.


✿ THE HIDDEN LIBRARY (The CollectorsSociety, #2)

Sometimes, the rabbit hole is deeper than expected . . .

Alice Reeve and Finn Van Brunt have tumbled into a life of secrets. Some secrets they share, such as their employment by the clandestine organization known as The Collectors Society. Other secrets they carry within them, fighting to keep buried the things that could change everything they think they know.

On the hunt for an elusive villain who is hell-bent on destroying legacies, Alice, Finn, and the rest of the Society are desperate to unravel the mysteries surrounding them. But the farther they spiral down this rabbit hole, the deeper they fall into secrets that will test their loyalties and pit them against enemies both new and old.

Secrets, they come to find, can reveal the deadliest of truths.

* This is the second book in the adult romance/fairy tale Collectors' Society series.



✿  THE FORGOTTEN MOUNTAIN (The CollectorsSociety, #3)

After years spent in Wonderland, Alice Reeve learned the impossible was quite possible after all. She thought she left such fantastical realities behind when she finally returned to England.

Now Alice has become a member of the clandestine Collectors Society, and the impossible has found her again in the form of an elusive villain set on erasing entire worlds. As she and the rest of the Society race to bring this mysterious murderer to justice, the fight becomes painfully personal.

Lives are being lost. Loved ones are shattered or irrevocably altered. Each step closer Alice gets to the shadowy man she hunts, the more secrets she unravels, only to reveal chilling truths. If she wants to win this war and save millions of lives, Alice must once more embrace the impossible and make the unimaginable, imaginable.

Sometimes, the rabbit hole leads to terrifying places.



✿  THE LOST CODEX (The CollectorsSociety, #4 / coming soon!)

Allies, once inseparable, splinter until they break apart.
An insidiousness carves its way through Wonderland, challenging the lands very existence.
Battle lines will be drawn as pages, long languishing in darkness, are finally illuminated.
Swords will clash, blood will be spilled, and lives will be lost.
For what is written can still be erased.

Unintentional Hiatus

Wow it feels like it's been so long since I've even logged into my blogger account. I kind of fell off the internet.

Life has been crazy the last month. Work has been brutal. I actually lost close to 10 pounds this summer from all the hauling and moving equipment, plus the walking. I work in IT so the idea of coming home after work and sitting on a computer just did not appeal. Plus my kids were off for the summer so trying to do something with all the energy they had, exhausted me.

Also my dad has been battling cancer on and off for the last 5 years. He finally finished his 3rd time doing chemo and his cancer is in remission. A week and a half ago he couldn't breath and my mom took him to the ER. Turns out he was close to having a heart attack because his heart was pumping so hard from the lack of oxygen. He has COPD (that's a broad spectrum I know) and he now has a nebulizer 4 times a day, still on steroids and a inhaler. Now this is not the worst thing right. I mean he has cancer, has lost a kidney, etc... For some reason this got to me. I broke down at work crying (embarrassing) and was a wreck for the week. It was one of those things where between the work stress and life stress I just finally melted down.

So reviews and reading has been by the wayside. Which makes me sad because it's one of the things that I enjoy. So I have reviews to write and books to read and I'm getting back into the swing things. So basically my unintentional hiatus is over.

Dunk Tank Entangled Summer Carnival #EPSummerCarnival #Giveaway


Welcome to the Embrace Dunk Tank where we’re talking about book boyfriends and wet t-shirts! Jennifer Blackwood, Shae Ross, Stacy Wise, Marnee Blake, Jus Accardo, and Rebecca Yarros are all sharing their favorite book boyfriends that they would L-O-V-E to see in the dunk tank. Check out the video below, and let us know: Who would you add to the list?



Unethical by Jennifer Blackwood, on sale for just 99¢!


About the Book:

Love burns hotter the second time around…

Two years ago, the medical world was shaken by scandal, and Payton Daniels’s family was at the center of it. The second she graduated, Payton left everything behind—her high school sweetheart, her family, and the controversy surrounding her mother’s death—and hid within the anonymity of college. But Payton’s ex, Blake Hiller, hasn’t forgiven her for leaving, and when he enrolls in the same medical ethics class, she panics. She can’t run the risk of him telling everyone who she really is.

As if being at the same university isn’t enough, both Blake and Payton land the same internship. Forced together, their passion for each other reignites, but when Payton is asked to testify in her father’s high-profile trial, she must choose between risking her acceptance into medical school to help her father, and losing every connection to her past—including the only guy she’s ever loved.

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Pretty Smart Girls Lace Up by Shae Ross, on sale for just 99¢!


About the Book:

Let the games begin…

Team Ryan
Ryan Rose and her fellow Spartans are finalists in a high-profile entrepreneurial competition. They’re competing for life-changing money and for their futures. They have a solid plan to win. All they need to do is trounce the competition: rich frat boys from an archrival university. Easy, right?
Team Jett
Jett Trebuchet’s first mistake was not realizing that Ryan and her friends were the competition. His second was expressing his unabashed confidence in his team’s ability to win. After all, everyone knows the only thing MSU does better than U of M is produce beautiful, easy women…oh, and he almost forgot to say “dumb.” And boy, does his team pay for that one.
Game On
As each side tries to game the other, something else seems to be getting in the way—attraction. Now Ryan and Jett must keep their teams from getting distracted by the opposite sex…and each other. All is not fair in love and war when it comes to winning this game.

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Author Info:
Beyond the Stars by Stacy Wise, on sale for just 99¢!


About the Book:

Falling for him wasn’t in the plans…

Most girls would kill for the opportunity to work for Jack McAlister, Hollywood’s hottest actor, but twenty-one-year-old Jessica Beckett is ready to kick him out of her red Ford Fiesta and never look back. She should be spending her junior year in France, eating pastries and sharpening her foreign language skills. Instead she’s reluctantly working as Jack’s personal assistant, thanks to her powerhouse talent agent aunt.

Jack is private, prickly, and downright condescending. Jessica pushes his buttons—she’s not the type of girl to swoon over celebrity heartthrobs, precisely why her aunt thought she’d be perfect for the job—and Jack pushes right back.

But as she begins to peel away his layers, Jessica is shocked to find she craves her boss’s easy smile and sexy blue eyes. The problem is, so does the entire female population. And what started out as the job from hell soon has Jess wondering if a guy like Jack could ever find love with a regular girl like her.

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Altered by Marnee Blake


About the Book:

When “normal” ends, survival begins…

Blue Michaels doesn’t know who to trust. She wakes in her sleepy little town to discover everyone is dead—well, almost everyone. U.S. Army Specialist Seth Campbell is alive, and a handful of her friends survived. But they’re different—each of them has powers they didn’t have when they went to bed.

Oh, and someone wants them dead.

It’s going to take all of their gifts if they are going to survive until they can figure out what to do. Blue wants to believe Seth has their best interests at heart. That he really does want to take care of them and get them to safety. God knows she can’t stop thinking about him.
But, can she trust him with their lives…and her heart?

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Author Info:
Rules of Survival by Jus Accardo


About the Book:

If you want to survive, you have to follow the rules…

Mikayla Morgan is wanted for her mother’s murder. She’s been on the run for almost a year now, avoiding not only the police but the real killer. Tired of running and desperate to clear her name, she breaks one of the most sacred rules: never return to the scene of the crime.

Every bounty hunter on the Eastern Seaboard is after the Morgan girl—but Shaun Denver and his partner snagged her. She’s a piece of work, and Shaun can’t decide if he wants to kiss her or kill her. When things take a sharp turn south, Shaun does the only thing he can think of to keep her close—he handcuffs them together.

As the danger mounts and the killer closes in, the chemistry between them threatens to explode. Shaun and Kayla will need to break all the rules if they hope to get out of this alive.

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Author Info:
Hallowed Ground by Rebecca Yarros


About the Book:

There are some debts you can’t repay…

Josh Walker is loyal, reckless, and every girl’s dream. But he only has eyes for December Howard, the girl he has yearned for since his high school hockey days. Together they have survived grief, the military, distance, and time as they’ve fought for stolen weekends between his post at Ft. Rucker and her schooling at Vanderbilt. Now that Josh is a medevac pilot and Ember is headed toward graduation, they’re moving on—and in—together.

Ember never wanted the Army life, but loving Josh means accepting whatever the army dictates—even when that means saying goodbye as Josh heads to Afghanistan, a country that nearly killed him once before and that took her father. But filling their last days together with love, passion, and plans for their future doesn’t temper Ember’s fear, and if there’s one thing she’s learned from her father’s death, it’s that there are some obstacles even love can’t conquer.

Flight school is over.

This is war.

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GIVEAWAY


And be sure to stop by the other carnival booths for more fun and giveaways and each day stop by the Facebook event page to chat with the authors.


Duck Pond #EpSummerCarnival #Giveaway


Step right up to the Entangled Summer Carnival Duck Pond Booth! Have you ever played this game and realized just how hard it actually is to line that magnetic fishing line up with the magnet in the little rubber duck?! Really it is harder than it looks but we have some amazing heroes who are dying to win that lucky prize for you. Who would you want to try out the Duck Pond game with? What was the best prize you have ever won from the Duck Pond game?
If you're looking for the perfect hero to win you an awesome carnival prize My hero, Paul, from Pretend It's Love is your best bet. He's a bartender, so he's used to working with his hands. Whether it's flipping bottles, working cocktail shakers or sliding a drink down the bar, he knows exactly how to handle himself. Plus, carrying slabs of beer and crates of wine around mean he's got the strength as well as the finesse. What more could you possibly want than a hero who's an expert in working with his hands?
I asked Quinn, the biker from Accidentally in Love with the Biker, about the duck pond. He sighed, and rubbed his chin. "Okay," he said. "Don't tell any of the guys at the shop this, but when I was a kid, if there had been an award, I would have been the North Las Vegas Duck Pond Champion. There's a certain tilt to the good ones, and if you stand there and watch the other kids play, you'll figure out which ones have the lucky number on the bottom.  I can't really explain it, there's just a feeling." He smirks. "Kind of like how I know what Kellie's in the mood for. When she puts on that black stretchy top thing--Ow!" 

Kellie glared at Quinn. "I don't think you need to share all of your secrets over the internet, babe." 
Ladies, my hero, Ian, from The Seduction of Kinley Foster, is the man you want on your arm when you venture to the duck pond at the carnival. Why? Because he's sexy as sin, and he's an agent for erotica writers. As such, he's all about turning something as innocent as a duck pond into something so steamy you'll be losing your panties the first chance you get. Just last night he made a list of prizes for drawn numbers. If your duck has a one on it's bottom, you get a scorching hot kiss. A two will get you spanked. A three, well, let's just say a three has long slow strokes with his tongue in all of the right places.

GIVEAWAY

Don't forget to check out the authors and their books below!

Pretend It's Love by Stefanie London, only 99¢!


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Accidentally in Love with the Biker by Teri Anne Stanley, only 99¢!


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The Seduction of Kinley Foster by Lisa Wells, only 99¢!


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And be sure to stop by the other carnival booths for more fun and giveaways and each day stop by the Facebook event page to chat with the authors.




Soda Ring Toss #EpSummerCarnival #Giveaway


Step right up to the Entangled Summer Carnival Soda Ring Toss Booth! A bottle of soda pop is great but let’s get real for as hard as that game could be there are a lot of other things we would love to win. The Entangled Lovestruck authors are sharing what (or who!) they would love to win with a lucky toss of the ring.  Let us know what/who you would want to win at the ring toss booth?
Message in a bottle: Gone are the days of hoping to win the giant pink panda, hanging from the rafters of the carnival game vendor. Now I want bigger and better! If I’m spending money and tossing a ring onto a soda pop bottle, I’m not looking to score a sugary drink or another stuffed animal. I have a house full of those already thanks to my little one’s Beanie Boo obsession. I’d much rather toss a ring and find a message inside the bottle—like a voucher for an all-inclusive, weeklong vacation on a private tropical island for my hubby and me!! That would be a prize worth tossing a few dozen rings for! I can almost feel the sand between my toes…the icy drink in my hand...

Hula Hoop toss: This would be a fun twist on the traditional soda pop toss. Instead of rings, I’m going to use hula hoops and instead of bottles, I’m lassoing people to join me and hubs on our private island vacation! And since I’m making the rules, I can win more than once. LOL. First up, Josh Holloway is snagged. Mmm. Do I need to tell you why? No, of course I don’t. Just look at him. (happy sigh). My second win is Giada De Laurentiis for hubs. I’m nice like that. Not only is she super hot and one of his favorites, but she can cook us some super yummy food while we lounge on the beach drinking margaritas and watching Josh surf shirtless! Does life get better than that? You betcha, ‘cause I’m not done winning yet! My last hoop actually snags 3 heads at once. Elon Musk, JK Rowling, and Jim Gaffigan are all coming with us because they are interesting, inspiring, and hilarious. Sounds like a great trip to me! Who would you hope to snag in a hula hoop toss?
If I get to toss a ring on someone, it's GOT to be my husband. Granted, sometimes that ring needs to go around his neck (after over 20 years together, that feeling is probably mutual) but they also make lovely rings for, um, other very specific regions. Granted, they're not so very much for tossing, but if I had ninja moves I could probably make it happen. Or injure him. Which brings us back to that ring he'd probably like to put around *my* neck...which could be freaking HOT with a fistful of hair. (I have a feeling I've gone off track, but now you're all left with a deeper understanding of my books, so there is that.)
I grew up in a small town and one of the things we looked forward to every summer was the County Fair with the 4H livestock, the quilting displays, the scent of corn dogs and funnel cakes in the air, and the carnival. The midway had thrill rides and games and offered a chance to laugh with your friends or hope that special someone took you on a ride or tried to win you a stuffed animal. 

The Soda Pop Ring Toss was always a favorite, but you usually missed the bottle, and if you made one, the best you could hope to win was a flimsy plastic toy or a cheap stuffed animal. Not that I’m older and wiser, I would have different choices for the prizes at the Ring Toss game. If I was at the carnival now and could choose what (or whom) I would love to toss a ring over and win, then I would have to choose Red Jamie from Outlander. I would then choose for him to lift me astride his trusty steed and wrap me in his muscular arms as he whisked me away to gallop along the Scottish Highlands while whispering lovely Gaelic words in my ear. 

Is that too much to ask for? Okay, I’ll rein it in a little and choose to toss my ring to win a night with Iron Man…er…I mean Robert Downey Jr. I just love that ridiculously cute smile of his. Wait, my current crush is Chris Pratt, so I mean I would probably have to choose him. Seriously, did you see that scene with him and the motorcycle in Jurassic Park, I could die, his grin is so hunky. Wait, maybe I should choose Thor, or Hugh Jackman. Yes, definitely Hugh Jackman…is it getting warm in here? Aw heck, I usually missed the ring anyway. 

Who would you choose?
Okay, Jennie. We may have a problem here because that handsome hunk of Scottish manliness was my first choice for the ring toss. I mean, who wouldn’t want to win Red Jamie (aka Sam Heughan)? Aside from his obvious ruggedly, devastatingly handsome sexiness, the man is loyal, protective, brave to a fault, honorable, and loves with a passion that has me melting from 200 years away! 

I’m afraid I just can’t give him up that easily. We’re going to have to have a Toss Off. Winner gets the Highlander! We’ll toss rings at his…um…well…maybe we’ll let him pick an appendage *ahem* Best 3 out of 5!!

Just on the very off chance I do not win my darling Jamie, my second choice of Ring Toss prizes would be Jason Momoa (and only by a very small margin…I mean really if I’m being honest I’d really love to just claim both of them. Can I do that? Am I making the rules for this game? I declare it approved!!) Have you seen the trailer for the Justice League? Jason as Aquaman? O.O

Give me a handful of rings – I’ll aim right for his…trident :-D And I’m going to win too. Jason and Jamie/Sam. Yes, I’m taking both. Because I’m greedy like that. And an excellent ring tosser ;-)

LOL. Anyone else duking it out to try and snag Jamie? Let us know what/who you would want to win at the ring toss booth?

GIVEAWAY

Don't forget to check out the authors and their books below!


The Hometown Hoax by Heather Thurmeier


Find it online:

Author Info:

The Three-Week Arrangement by Sarah Ballance, on sale for just 99¢!


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Author Info:

Romancing the Ranger by Jennie Marts


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Author Info:

Truly, Madly, Sweetly by Kira Archer


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Author Info:

And be sure to stop by the other carnival booths for more fun and giveaways and each day stop by the Facebook event page to chat with the authors.