So, on May 31, the first BookCon happened.
Some background: BookExpo America is a yearly conference in NYC. Each year, thousands of publishers and authors and professionals gather in the Javits Center for this industry event. Over the last two years, BEA has experimented with allowing consumers onto the floor on the final day of the event.
This year was the first year they separated the events, cordoning off an area for consumers. This floor area became BookCon. There was a controversy surrounding this switch: some people (such as I) had already purchased tickets to Power Reader Day, which was scheduled to happen as usual. I was caught up in the uproar, and rightly so: I paid to go to BEA and was instead given tickets to a smaller experimental event.
I was angry, but I made the best of it. BookCon did not impress me with the celebrities they got to attend. In the beginning there were more movie stars than authors (and of course, very little diversity within the announced attendees). There were a few authors I wanted to see, but not too many.
When we got to the Javits Center (I also convinced my neighbor to come with me), there was a huge line for Autographing tickets. It stretched around the building. The ticket booth open at 9;00, but, to cut down the line, they opened early. We decided to skip it, and forgo the big ticketed authors (i.e. Cassandra Clare) and instead got in line to wait for the floor to open.
When the floor opened it was a mad house, everyone rushing this way and that. Immediately it was obvious the space for BookCon would not be able to hold everyone. The aisles were much too narrow, and the in-booth signings and giveaways clogged the pathways even further. It was chaos.
Besides that, many publishers gave out all their advance copies in the first ten minutes. This caused a panic with those who wanted to get those titles (lots of grabbing hands). I was reaching for Afterworlds, the upcoming novel by Scott Westerfeld, and someone slapped my hand out of the way. Then the booth ran out. So I didn’t get one. This basically set the tone for the whole day.
My neighbor and I split up, and I went to line up for Alexandra Bracken, author of The Darkest Minds trilogy, with my sister. We got there 15 minutes early, just in case, but we were turned away by a very rude BookCon employee. She yelled at the growing crowd to disperse, and threatened to refuse to let us get a book if we didn’t leave. The crowd kept getting bigger, and my sister and I made a few new friends that we waited in line with so we would have a group to stay with.
We ended up waiting in two separate lines, for over an hour. The entire time, BookCon employees herded us around like animals. My sister and I and new friend Sarah (Hey, Sarah!) were one of the last people to get a book. Alexandra Bracken was signing hardcover copies of her second book Never Fade. She was so young and pretty, and super nice. She couldn’t believe the crowds at all.
After that madness, we decided to get lunch. The cafeteria was insane. There was a big selection, but all the lines were ridiculous. We ended up splitting a sandwich. I then hustled off to the BookTuber Meetup, which was without a doubt the highlight of my day!
I’m just going to say it before it becomes painfully obvious: I am a very shy person. So when I walked into the crowd of BookTubers and fans, I was overwhelmed. I actually walked right into Heather’s (from Bookables) husband. She and I talked for a bit. She was so nice and personable.
I also saw Tiernan, from TheBookTuber, who was super tall. He and I talked a couple of times. I had a cool discussion with him and Bekah (Bekah AwesomeBookNut) for a while. I took lots of pictures, I promise.
I walked around for a bit, taking in all the fans and BookTubers interacting with each other. It was surreal. I loved being able to see these regular people in real life. All of them were so kind and just as frazzled as I was.
I waited to say hi to Jesse, from jessethereader. He was talking to Reagan (PeruseProject) and I didn’t want to interrupt. I got talking with this nice girl named Christina ( I remember because she gave me her business card), and together we introduced ourselves. He was so nice and I got a picture. I had quite the fangirl moment.
I caught a glimpse of Jeff and Jaime (Ermahgerd Berks), but I didn’t get the chance to say hi. Then I got to meet Kassidy Voinche, who I adore. She’s a wonderful hugger and I loved her dress. She was super funny and really, really sweet.
Here are the pictures from the Meetup:
After that, I walked around the floor a little bit more. I was disappointed. There were no books left. Some booths had books for “inspiration”, which meant you couldn’t take them or purchase them. It was frustrating. The crowds were still horrendous. I never got to talk to a publisher or representative, which was a priority of mine. I had hoped to make a few connections to industry professionals, but alas…
On a bit of an aside, I was waiting on line to go to the bathroom (which was a thirty minute wait) and I saw the “line” for the John Green panel scheduled to happen in two hours. There were so many people, and security guards were just yelling at everybody. It was a pit of madness. Look:
After that unfulfilling day, I went back home. It was a very quiet train ride. No one I was with was happy. BookCon was actually just a Con, there weren’t many books at all.
So, I don’t know if I’m going to attend BookCon next year. I’d like to give them the benefit of the doubt and say it’ll be better organized next year, but they have their work cut out for them. My goal is to get tickets to BookExpo America, and also check in on BookCon, but who knows?
Thanks for reading. Leave me a comment if you went to BookCon! Bye
So here is another “haul” post, including books I received for Christmas. November and December were good to me, so I’m breaking this post up into two parts: Young Adult and Adult Fantasy. The total book count is 19. Wow…I’m just going to jump right in. Hope you enjoy!
So the first books I got were The World of the End by Ofir Gaftla and The Cusanus Game by Wolfgang Jeschke. I won them in a giveaway of international books, from the amazing people of Tor.com. I haven’t started either of them, but they do look interesting.
The next book, which I received from the wonderful people over at Gollancz, was Moon’s Artifice by Tom Lloyd. I am currently reading this, and so far it’s very good. The world and the characters are both very real and Lloyd has a real gift with descriptions.
After that, my family and I went to New York City for our annual holiday trip. We usually go to museums but this year I convinced everyone to go to Strand Bookstore. I had gone earlier this year, but unfortunately was rushed so I didn’t have a good chance to walk around, and it was overwhelming. I needed to go back and really admire all the books. So we all went and of course I bought a book, because who goes to Strand and doesn’t buy a book? Not me. I picked up a copy of The Passage by Justin Cronin. I actually started this book over the summer, but it’s very dark and somewhat dense, so I put it down and never got back to it. I did enjoy it however, and when I saw the hardcover for $10, I decided to go for it. Now it is forming the base for my ever-growing 2014 TBR pile.
I didn’t get any Adult Fantasy books for Christmas, but I did get quite a few gift-cards to Barnes and Noble. So I trekked over to their Paramus store, the one with the amazing used book section, and I went a little nuts. Just a little. I bought a bunch of books, starting with Malice by John Gwynne. I have been dying to read this book since I heard about its release in Great Britain. I thought it was right up my alley. Then I heard it was coming over to America, so I put it on my Christmas list. I didn’t get it, and when I saw it at B&N, I just couldn’t pass it up. I got a little distracted with other books, but it is next on my list to read.
I also bought Thieftaker by D.B. Jackson. I’ve a lot of good things about it, but I don’t really know much about the plot. It’s supposed to be a really amazing Historical Fantasy, so I’m looking forward to that.
The other books I got had been on my list for a long time. The Chronicles of Amber by Roger Zelzany is supposedly a classic, and I started it years ago, but never finished. Now I have all the books.
Devices and Desires by K.J. Parker looks very interesting, I’ve started it already and so far its good. This is my first book by this author, but I’ve heard good things, so I’ll keep reading.
City of Dreams and Nightmares by Ian Whates looks really good. I love books about interesting cities and I absolutely love it when an author create a city that is a character in its own right, and not just a backdrop. I’m hoping that Whates succeeds in doing just that.
The final book from above is Spellwright by Blake Charlton. This book looks like it incorporates my other favorite story line, the young pupil must master a certain skill to save the kingdom, world etc. For some reason, these type of books really catch my eye. I love seeing a character develop from a bumbling idiot into a hero. Spellwright looks like it has that sort of story, but with a few added twists.
On to the Young Adult books!
Alright, the first young adult book I got was Relic by Heather Terrell. I had contacted her for an interview, but she left on tour before she received my questions. So I was taken completely by surprise when I received a hardcover copy of Relic in the mail. I immediately dropped the other book I was reading to start this one, and I finished it pretty quick. It was good, but at the end, I just couldn’t stop laughing. If you’ve read it then you probably know what I’m talking about.
This holiday season I was involved in two Secret Santa parties. And both times I got books. The first was The Selection by Kiera Cass. The friend who gave it to me is obsessed with the series and she decided it was time I read it. I haven’t gotten to it yet, but it does look interesting.
The second Secret Santa book was The Book Thief by Markus Zusak. I tried to read this book when I was in middle school, but I couldn’t get past the idea that it was narrated by Death. Now its been turned into a movie, which I have not seen. It looks like the kind of book I want to read before I see the movie.
I didn’t get that many fiction books for Christmas. I did, however, get one that I REALLY wanted, which was Shadow and Bone by Leigh Bardugo. I’ve already read it and I loved it so much. I am reading the sequel as I type this post, and it is begging for me to pick it up again. The third book, Ruin and Rising, isn’t due out until the summer and it is one of my most anticipated books of the year.
The only other books I got for Christmas were Divergent, Insurgent and Allegiant in a box set. I’ve read the first two, but someone (i.e. the Internet) spoiled the ending of Allegiant for me, so now I’m hesitant to start reading. I will though, because I love Tris and Four so much. The trilogy is so beautiful on my shelf and I have a new love for box sets. They are so nice looking.
Anyway, on the same post-Christmas Barnes and Noble trip, I bought Under the Never Sky by Veronica Rossi. I started reading this book, and I just couldn’t get into it. I don’t know, but the main character just bugged me. I’ll try to start over, but I make no promises.
The final book in this too-long book haul is Masks by E.C. Blake. This book was also on my Christmas list, and since I didn’t get it, I bought it for myself. I read it on New Year’s Eve, because I was already staying up and I really got into it. I like the idea of the masks as a way of the government to control the people. It was a little extreme, but I enjoyed it.
So that’s my November and December book haul. I hope you all had a wonderful holiday, whatever you celebrated, and I wish everyone a happy 2014! May it be great!
Each week I receive books, whether I buy them myself, or win them, or get them for free, I’ll do a little post so you know what to expect.
This batch is from Amazon, Goodreads, and my local library.
Anyway, onto the books.
The first one I have been dying to read since I heard about its release in print form. Blood Song by Anthony Ryan was originally only released as an e-book. Somehow, it ended up printed, and blurbs and advertisements were everywhere. I fell in love when I read the blurb for the first time. It looked like a good, solid fantasy novel. I finally managed to purchase a copy. I’m super excited, and I plan on reading it as soon as I can.
“The Sixth Order wields the sword of justice and smites the enemies of the Faith and the Realm.”
Vaelin Al Sorna was only a child of ten when his father left him at the iron gate of the Sixth Order. The Brothers of the Sixth Order are devoted to battle, and Vaelin will be trained and hardened to the austere, celibate, and dangerous life of a Warrior of the Faith. He has no family now save the Order.
Vaelin’s father was Battle Lord to King Janus, ruler of the unified realm. Vaelin’s rage at being deprived of his birthright and dropped at the doorstep of the Sixth Order like a foundling knows no bounds. He cherishes the memory of his mother, and what he will come to learn of her at the Order will confound him. His father, too, has motives that Vaelin will come to understand. But one truth overpowers all the rest: Vaelin Al Sorna is destined for a future he has yet to comprehend. A future that will alter not only the realm, but the world.”
Blood Song by Anthony Ryan (A Raven’s Shadow novel)
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The second book I’ve had my eye on for while as well. Enclave by Ann Aguirre, is a grim looking dystopian novel that looks positively gripping. I’m on a dystopian, young-adult kick right now, so it’s right up my alley. Both my sister and I are looking forward to reading it.
“WELCOME TO THE APOCALYPSE
In Deuce’s world, people earn the right to a name only if they survive their first fifteen years. By that point, each unnamed ‘brat’ has trained into one of three groups–Breeders, Builders, or Hunters, identifiable by the number of scars they bear on their arms. Deuce has wanted to be a Huntress for as long as she can remember.
As a Huntress, her purpose is clear—to brave the dangerous tunnels outside the enclave and bring back meat to feed the group while evading ferocious monsters known as Freaks. She’s worked toward this goal her whole life, and nothing’s going to stop her, not even a beautiful, brooding Hunter named Fade. When the mysterious boy becomes her partner, Deuce’s troubles are just beginning.
Down below, deviation from the rules is punished swiftly and harshly, and Fade doesn’t like following orders. At first Deuce thinks he’s crazy, but as death stalks their sanctuary, and it becomes clear the elders don’t always know best, Deuce wonders if Fade might be telling the truth. Her partner confuses her; she’s never known a boy like him before, as prone to touching her gently as using his knives with feral grace.
As Deuce’s perception shifts, so does the balance in the constant battle for survival. The mindless Freaks, once considered a threat only due to their sheer numbers, show signs of cunning and strategy… but the elders refuse to heed any warnings. Despite imminent disaster, the enclave puts their faith in strictures and sacrifice instead. No matter how she tries, Deuce cannot stem the dark tide that carries her far from the only world she’s ever known.”
Enclave by Ann Aguire (Razorland Book 1)
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The final book I bought from Amazon was Garth Nix’s Shade’s Children. Another dark looking, post-apocalyptic book. I’ve started it in the past, but have put it down in favor of other books. I’ve heard great things about it, and I remember really liking the beginning. Hopefully, it lives up to what I remember.
“If you’re lucky, you live to fight another day.
In a futuristic urban wasteland, evil Overlords have decreed that no human shall live a day past their fourteenth birthday. On that Sad Birthday, the children of the Dorms are taken to the Meat Factory, where they will be made into creatures whose sole purpose is to kill.
The mysterious Shade—once a man, but now more like the machines he fights—recruits the few teenagers who escape into a secret resistance force. With luck, cunning, and skill, four of Shade’s children come closer than any to discovering the source of the Overlords’ power—and the key to their downfall. But the closer they get, the more ruthless Shade seems to become.”
Shade’s Children by Garth Nix
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This next book came in the mail, not from Amazon, but from Goodreads. I won it in a free contest on Goodreads, which, may I say, is an amazing site. Free books make pretty much anyone happy and it was a hardcover, which was a pleasant surprise. Anyway, I entered the contest and won, which is awesome. This book is an adult thriller, with, it looks like, a lot of religion. I like the idea and the main premise of the book, and I just hope that the story doesn’t suffer because of the idea of a unified religion.
“Aaron Davis joins his father’s ministry at seven years of age. He attracts national attention when he heals a woman of cancer. His services draw thousands of worshipers. He creates an organization with his sister Esther, called the Brotherhood of Man, that unites the major religions of the world. He brokers a treaty that ends the conflict in the Middle East and Northern Africa. He fields a powerful army to maintain the peace. Jack Holder, a former Congressman, becomes President. The United States is under intense international pressure to join the Brotherhood of Man’s effort to create a new world order. Jack’s secret Masonic organization wants Aaron Davis eliminated. Barbara Holder, Jack’s religious wife, believes Aaron Davis is the Antichrist. The fate of the world will depend on which side Jack chooses.”
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These last three I got from my local library system. All of them are ARCs, which I am really excited about.
The first one is Aquifer by Jonathan Freisan. It was published on August 6. This one is a young adult dystopian book, dealing with water being a scarce commodity. I like the cover, and the premise of this one, and I can’t wait to read it.
“Only he can bring what they need to survive…
In 2250, water is scarce, and those who control it control everything. And they’ll do anything to maintain their power – deceiving, dividing families, banning love… even killing those who oppose them.
But above all, they seek to control knowledge and communication – ensuring the truth that will bring their downfall will never be known. But one person verges on discovering it all.
Sixteen-year-old Luca becomes the Deliverer, the only one allowed to contact the people called ‘Water Rats,’ who mine the essential water deep underground and bring it to the ‘Toppers’ who desperately need it above.
But when he meets a Water Rat who captures his heart and leads him to secrets – secrets about a vast conspiracy, and about himself – the net around him tightens. Luca and those around him must uncover and share the truth needed to overthrow tyranny – even as they fight for their lives.”
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The second book is Under the Empyrean Sky by Chuck Wendig. This one was published in July (so these ARCs aren’t really advance anymore). This one is about a utopian society with a massive divide between the Haves and the Have-Nots. It reminds me a bit of the new movie Elysium, with the rich living high in the air, and the poor barely surviving on the ground. This book looks very exciting.
“Corn is king in the Heartland, and Cael McAvoy has had enough of it. It’s the only crop the Empyrean government allows the people of the Heartland to grow ? and the genetically modified strain is so aggressive that it takes everything the Heartlanders have just to control it. As captain of the Big Sky Scavengers, Cael and his crew sail their rickety ship over the corn day after day, scavenging for valuables, trying to earn much-needed ace notes for their families. But Cael’s tired of surviving life on the ground while the Empyrean elite drift by above in their extravagant sky flotillas. He’s sick of the mayor’s son besting Cael’s crew in the scavenging game. And he’s worried about losing Gwennie ? his first mate and the love of his life ? forever when their government-chosen spouses are revealed. But most of all, Cael is angry ? angry that their lot in life will never get better and that his father doesn’t seem upset about any of it. Cael’s ready to make his own luck . . . even if it means bringing down the wrath of the Empyrean elite and changing life in the Heartland forever.”
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The final book I got from my library was Frozen by Melissa De La Cruz and Michael Johnston. I have been super excited for this book. It was one of my most anticipated books of this month. It has magic and a completely new setting. I am dying to read this, it’s at the top of the pile. Expect a review soon. I’m so excited!
“Welcome to New Vegas, a city once covered in bling, now blanketed in ice. Like much of the destroyed planet, the place knows only one temperature—freezing. But some things never change. The diamond in the ice desert is still a 24-hour hedonistic playground and nothing keeps the crowds away from the casino floors, never mind the rumors about sinister sorcery in its shadows.
At the heart of this city is Natasha Kestal, a young blackjack dealer looking for a way out. Like many, she’s heard of a mythical land simply called “the Blue.” They say it’s a paradise, where the sun still shines and the waters are turquoise. More importantly, it’s a place where Nat won’t be persecuted, even if her darkest secret comes to light.
But passage to the Blue is treacherous, if not impossible, and her only shot is to bet on a ragtag crew of mercenaries led by a cocky runner named Ryan Wesson to take her there. Danger and deceit await on every corner, even as Nat and Wes find themselves inexorably drawn to each other. But can true love survive the lies? Fiery hearts collide in this fantastic tale of the evil men do and the awesome power within us all.”
So, that’s all for this week. Comment if you have any thoughts!
Sadly, summer is coming to an end. The days will get shorter and colder, with more predictions of snow. And with these dreary days comes a chance for more reading time. To curl up under a blanket and read a new book as you listen to the snow plows and sooner or later, Christmas music.
But I’m getting way ahead of myself.
This summer I read some fantastic books. Here’s a look at the books I read, but didn’t have a chance to review. Just a few thoughts on each title, and maybe a recommendation or two….enjoy!
“After a brutal battle with the underworld that nearly destroyed him, Locke and his trusted sidekick, Jean, fled the island city of their birth and landed on the exotic shores of Tal Verrar to nurse their wounds. But even at this westernmost edge of civilization, they can’t rest for long—and are soon back to what they do best: stealing from the undeserving rich and pocketing the proceeds for themselves.
This time, however, they have targeted the grandest prize of all: the Sinspire, the most exclusive and heavily guarded gambling house in the world. Its nine floors attract the wealthiest clientele—and to rise to the top, one must impress with good credit, amusing behavior… and excruciatingly impeccable play. For there is one cardinal rule, enforced by Requin, the house’s cold-blooded master: it is death to cheat at any game at the Sinspire.
Someone in Tal Verrar has uncovered the duo’s secret. Someone from their past who has every intention of making the impudent criminals pay for their sins. Now it will take every ounce of cunning to save their mercenary souls. And even that may not be enough…”
This is the sequel to The Lies of Locke Lamora. I reviewed the first one here. I loved that one, and the author kept the plots and schemes coming in the sequel. I adored it completely. Jean and Locke are my new favorite duo. The third in the series, The Republic of Thieves, is due out October 8. A review is forthcoming.
“There is a cancer at the heart of the mighty Cerani Empire: a plague that attacks young and old, rich and poor alike. Geometric patterns spread across the skin, until you die in agony, or become a Carrier, doing the bidding of an evil intelligence, the Pattern Master. Anyone showing the tell-tale marks is put to death; that is Emperor Beyon’s law…but now the pattern is running over the Emperor’s own arms. His body servants have been executed, he ignores his wives, but he is doomed, for soon the pattern will reach his face. While Beyon’s agents scour the land for a cure, Sarmin, the Emperor’s only surviving brother, awaits his bride, Mesema, a windreader from the northern plains. Unused to the Imperial Court’s stifling protocols and deadly intrigues, Mesema has no one to turn to but an aging imperial assassin, the Emperor’s Knife.
As long-planned conspiracies boil over into open violence, the invincible Pattern Master appears from the deep desert. Only three people stand in his way: a lost prince, a world-weary killer, and a young girl from the steppes who once saw a path in a pattern — a path that might save them all.”
The first in a trilogy, The Emperor’s Knife is complex and unique. The Persian-like empire, and the different character backgrounds allows the reader to enjoy the story to a new extent. The sequel is already published, and I am eagerly awaiting the final book.
“After spending most of his life in captivity, Sarmin now sits upon the Throne of Cerana. But his reign is an uneasy one. And the emperor’s own heart is torn between two very different women: Mesema, a Windreader princess, and Grada, a lowborn untouchable with whom Sarmin shares a unique bond. In times past, a royal assassin known as the Emperor’s Knife served to defend the throne from menace, but the last Knife has perished and his successor has yet to be named. Sarmin must choose his own loyal death-dealer . . . but upon whom can be he bestow the burden of the Knife-Sworn?”
Sequel to The Emperor’s Knife, this book lives up to its predecessor, and then some. We meet new characters and learn more about the motives of familiar ones. I can’t wait for the third book to come out!
“Ranging from the now infamous village of New Dachang in the United Federation of China, where the epidemiological trail began with the twelve-year-old Patient Zero, to the unnamed northern forests where untold numbers sought a terrible and temporary refuge in the cold, to the United States of Southern Africa, where the Redeker Plan provided hope for humanity at an unspeakable price, to the west-of-the-Rockies redoubt where the North American tide finally started to turn, this invaluable chronicle reflects the full scope and duration of the Zombie War.”
The Brad Pitt movie was nothing like the book. I was terrified, as this was my first zombie book. The changing perspectives didn’t allow a connection to form, but it showed the reader so many different takes on a single event. It was thrilling and I was hooked easily. I loved the style of this book. I know there really isn’t room for a sequel, but I wish was there was one!
“Cassia has always trusted the Society to make the right choices for her: what to read, what to watch, what to believe. So when Xander’s face appears on-screen at her Matching ceremony, Cassia knows with complete certainty that he is her ideal mate… until she sees Ky Markham’s face flash for an instant before the screen fades to black.
The Society tells her it’s a glitch, a rare malfunction, and that she should focus on the happy life she’s destined to lead with Xander. But Cassia can’t stop thinking about Ky, and as they slowly fall in love, Cassia begins to doubt the Society’s infallibility and is faced with an impossible choice: between Xander and Ky, between the only life she’s known and a path that no one else has dared to follow.”
I liked this book. It was easy to read and I found it to be less action packed Hunger Games. It was diverting, but boring at times and the characters were somewhat simple. However, I found the world to be unique and interesting.
“In search of a future that may not exist and faced with the decision of who to share it with, Cassia journeys to the Outer Provinces in pursuit of Ky – taken by the Society to his certain death – only to find that he has escaped, leaving a series of clues in his wake. Cassia’s quest leads her to question much of what she holds dear, even as she finds glimmers of a different life across the border. But as Cassia nears resolve and certainty about her future with Ky, an invitation for rebellion, an unexpected betrayal, and a surprise visit from Xander – who may hold the key to the uprising and, still, to Cassia’s heart – change the game once again. Nothing is as expected on the edge of Society, where crosses and double crosses make the path more twisted than ever.”
The sequel to Matched, and not as good. The rebellion hiding in the wilderness was a little cliché. This book was a quick read, but interesting enough to make me want to read the final book in the trilogy (already published).
“In the city of Shadow, beneath the World Tree, alleyways shimmer with magic and godlings live hidden among mortalkind. Oree Shoth, a blind artist, takes in a homeless man who glows like a living sun to her strange sight. This act of kindness engulfs Oree in a nightmarish conspiracy. Someone, somehow, is murdering godlings, leaving their desecrated bodies all over the city.
Oree’s peculiar guest is at the heart of it, his presence putting her in mortal danger — but is it him the killers want, or Oree? And is the earthly power of the Arameri king their ultimate goal, or have they set their sights on the Lord of Night himself?”
Second book in the Inheritence Trilogy. I absolutely loved the first book, and I loved this one just as much. I was disappointed to leave the characters from the first book, but the author does a good job of introducing new people. I don’t like the sex in either book, but the story doesn’t suffer because of it.The characters are wonderfully real and flawed. I cannot wait to read the last book.
Tell me the books you loved this summer in the comments!