The King, Tiffany Reisz
Review from jeannie zelos book reviews
Kingsley – the King. He’s a strong character full of sex, sin and sensuality, spiced up with his ability to laugh when the situations gets bad. He sees humour in the strangest of places. Soren is the only person to really understand him, and King’s loyal and in love with him to the death.
I’d looked forward to this book but…it didn’t have that “can’t put down” feeling every other has had for me. Tiffany’s writing style is as ever easy and seductive, and pulls the reader in but the story..maybe its because I know by now what’s happening, I know how it ends, and this is just a strand in the whole weave showing how Kingsley becomes so entrenched in the group. I don’t know – but whatever it was it was a fun read, I love Kingsley and I really enjoyed seeing how he was raised to the level of King. How he grew from that schoolboy who idolised Soren into a person in his own right. I loved the snippets of the two when they were at school, and I also enjoyed seeing how his trademark style of dress came about. What didn’t work so well I guess was the big part of the book which was about the creation of the eighth circle. Or mortem to the point, the getting hold of the building. To be honest I’d have liked it more if the gaining it was briefer, and we got a bit about just how the conversion took place, how they decided what was needed and how it came about. I liked how Kingsley started getting the staff, that worked well for me, and maybe as that was new info. The past that I liked best was where we saw them in scenes we hadn’t seen before, or which had been only briefly alluded to – when Soren took King with him and they went to warn his fathers new wife for example. That was interesting, gave us more insights into both of them and what drove them, and of course it was Hot!! Its a good book of course, I don’t think Tiffany can do less with this series, its just for me it didn’t make that magic five, and I’m not sure its one I’d re read. Its fits with the rest but whereas I would (and have) re read some of the others, this one is probably a one off. It rounds off some scenes but there’s nothing that it contains that we don’t already know in part, and its not one that has to be read to understand the whole series. Still, I am SO looking forward to reading more about Soren! and still love the King of course…
Stars: Four, a good book but not up to the others for me.
ARC supplied by Netgalley and publishers.
The Twelve Kingdoms: The Tears of the Rose, Jeffe Kennedy
Review from Jeannie Zelos book reviews
Genre: Fantasy/paranormal romance
Once again I’ve jumped in to a trilogy without reading part one, but I read the amazon sample and a few reviews, so had a good idea of how the story was working. Whereas last book seemed to focus on Andi and the Tala, this one is centred around Amelia (Ami).
Ami seemed a bit..shallow to be honest. Its not really her fault, she’s been brought up with wealth and privilege, and to believe that her beauty is something to be admired, and add on that she’s Glorianna’s Avatar and its not hard to understand why she’s so vacuous at times. The eldest sister Ursula has always been mother to the two younger sisters and a warrior, always strategizing with their father and looking to protect her people. She’s very conscious of duty, and Andi was always the odd middle child, didn’t have Ursula’s intelligence for military matters nor Ami’s beauty, and was left to go her own way. Now she’s on the opposite side to her sisters, married to their enemy and Queen of the Tala. Ami was deeply in love with the handsome Hugh, looking to have a long future with him and their children, being a bountiful avatar and Queen and now its all gone wrong. Hugh is dead, killed in a battle with the Tala, and her father and father in law seek to control her and the child she carries, and she’s grief stricken and finding it hard to decide anything. Even in that at times its as of she’s playing a role it seems to me. then events begin to challenge her, not least the assistant to Kir, Glorianna’s priest. The White Monk pushes at Ami with some harsh words, and she takes a look at her life, not through her eyes of the past but through the eyes upon her, and sees that she’s at the centre of a power struggle. It seems Kir too has a taste for controlling her. Ami is really growing up now, no longer a pampered child and not happy at what she sees of herself, and with the help of some trusted people slowly seeks to change. Its a dangerous path she treads though, not knowing quite who she can trust and learning as she goes the kind of strategies Ursula excels at. The journey isn’t just mental but physical too, trying to see if she can enter Anwynn, the place where Andi and the Tala reside that’s full of magic, and along the way she finds a new and forbidden love. I really enjoyed seeing how she changed from the vapid and shallow child she was – even though married she was still a teen and acted like it, to a sensuous and clever lady. I’m keen to see where the journey goes next. Once again Jeffe has come up with a story that takes a magical slant to it, and I was fascinated by that part – as with Jeffe’s Covenant of Thorns series the magic used here is clever, believable and not some miracle power brought in just at the crucial time. I need that, need to have some kind of grounding reference for it so that I can feel its real, and this book ( and Thorns!) does that.
Stars: Four and a half, a great read but not quite as addicting as Covenant of Thorns.
ARC supplied by Netgalley and publishers
Waiting Hearts, Beth Ann Stifflemire
Review from jeannie zelos book reviews
Genre: Contemporary Romance
I’m a romance lover but like my romance to be edgy, angsty, full of deep drama and dark emotion. this debut book by Beth isn’t that – it’s a great read, well planned out and full of gentle surprises but its more like a Hallmark film, the ones my Other Half loves to watch – with tissues at the ready. He used to cry at Little House on the Prairie too – and its the same kind of sweet, heart warming story as they have.
Kayla, there’s so much to admire about her, she’s grown up with this heart problem and it would be easy to just give in, to say life is unfair and wallow, and yet she doesn’t. Full marks to her parents for pushing her to do her best, to achieve as much as possible. It must have been tough on them too. Sadly her beloved dad has since died, but she still has her mum within travelling distance. Her dad crops up from beyond the grave a few times to give her hope and advice, and though many people love that kind of thing it’s not for me. She makes her life, has a good job, and friends, and does as much as she’s able, though of course there are huge restrictions on what she can do. Then musician Gabe comes into her life and he’s a real hero. Not put off by her illness, he’s a huge support and soon they;re deeply in love.
Then Gabe gets his breakthrough and the impact it has on her is huge, she had to make some hard choices. that was really emotional and I felt for both of them. Its a true rock and hard place decision, tough, heart-breaking and I understand why she chose as she did. Makes me glad our NHS in UK isn’t like that. Still, life moves on, and then that’s where it started to get problematic for me, things happen that are just too twee, too coincidental for me and yet I know if this were a film my OH would have the tissues out!! I do cry at books, I’m not unemotional, but it just takes a different kind of setting for me. Its got a well rounded ending, though bittersweet in many ways.
As ever though this is just how it affected me, and lots of readers like that slow, gentle setting, the way the story gradually builds up, and the sweet but heart breaking ending. It was well written and if stories that are like Hallmark films are what you like I’m sure you’ll love this one.
Stars: Difficult, there were parts I liked, and the characters were great, it was just the overall “sweetness” of it that was a bit too much for me. Three, a good book but not a great one for me.
ARC supplied by author.