Everyone knows the legend. Of Arthur, destined to be a king. Of the beautiful Guinevere, who will betray him with his most loyal knight, Lancelot. Of the bitter sorceress, Morgana, who will turn against them all. But Elaine alone carries the burden of knowing what is to come–for Elaine of Shalott is cursed to see the future.

On the mystical isle of Avalon, Elaine runs free and learns of the ancient prophecies surrounding her and her friends–countless possibilities, almost all of them tragic.

When their future comes to claim them, Elaine, Guinevere, Lancelot, and Morgana accompany Arthur to take his throne in stifling Camelot, where magic is outlawed, the rules of society chain them, and enemies are everywhere. Yet the most dangerous threats may come from within their own circle.

As visions are fulfilled and an inevitable fate closes in, Elaine must decide how far she will go to change fate–and what she is willing to sacrifice along the way.


5 stars because it made me cry

I am generally easily pleased with any King Arthur retelling. I grew up on Mary Stewart, Stephen Lawhead, TA Barron and Marian Zimmer Bradley. I loved all of those books. But one of the books that made the most impact on me was a book titled, “I am Morgan Le Fay”, which was all about our favorite sorceress from her POV. Think Marian Zimmer Bradley lite. So I was never more pleased than when Kiersten White wrote from Guinevere’s perspective, and when Tracy Deonn took a whole new take on the Arthurian myth. I love when things get mixed up. So obviously when I heard Laura Sebastian was taking on the Lady of Shallot I was so beyond excited. I love when myths take women and put them front and center.

Elaine was an amazing character, and I love the way Sebastian incorporated her into the myth with more agency. And I adored Morgana in this one. Actually, I liked all the characters to be honest. I got really invested in them despite knowing what happens in the end. You would think that by now I would be used to the fact that it would be a sad ending.

I cried my way through this book. It made me feel so many emotions and I could not contain them. Instead I had to hold the book and rock myself through the feelings. I didn’t quite succeed.

I will say there definitely was a queer overtone to the book which I liked. I just think there were a few slow parts in the book that were a bit of a struggle to get through, but didn’t drag the book down overmuch.

I love Sebastian’s writing style. She drew me in and kept me reading. It was so easy to read honestly. It was an enjoyment.

I gave it five stars because it made me feel all the emotions and cry. I need Sebastian to write more like this, because I enjoyed it SO much.

If you ever like MZB, you will probably like this book.

From holy cup comes holy light;

The faithful hands sets world aright.

And in the Seven Martyrs’ sight,

Mere man shall end this endless night.

It has been twenty-seven long years since the last sunrise. For nearly three decades, vampires have waged war against humanity; building their eternal empire even as they tear down our own. Now, only a few tiny sparks of light endure in a sea of darkness.

Gabriel de León is a silversaint: a member of a holy brotherhood dedicated to defending realm and church from the creatures of the night. But even the Silver Order couldn’t stem the tide once daylight failed us, and now, only Gabriel remains.

Imprisoned by the very monsters he vowed to destroy, the last silversaint is forced to tell his story. A story of legendary battles and forbidden love, of faith lost and friendships won, of the Wars of the Blood and the Forever King and the quest for humanity’s last remaining hope:

The Holy Grail.


What does one rate this book? I honestly waffled between three and four stars. I knew what to expect going in based on early reviews, gory, bloody, violent, tons of profanity and vulgarity. None of that particularly bothers me (mostly because I skip if it gets really descriptive gory), but I know people thought it was excessive. Personally, I didn’t find it excessive. I rather think that was the point. Anyways, that isn’t the point of my review in any case. I wanted to talk about the things that I did and didn’t like about this book and whether or not I’m going to continue the series!

the good

-The World building.
I enjoyed the world building in this book. It was a little convoluted at first, but things were explained as we went along through the book.

-The Characters
I liked most of the characters. I found them annoying and intriguing in turns. I like how they all had different personalities, and I didn’t feel like they were replicated over and over, or copy and pasted characters. They were morally grey and treasonous. It’s best not to trust any of them.

-The Plot
The plot was good, and I liked how we went back and forth through time. I was honestly guessing about the status of characters throughout the book. I will say one part really made me sad, but I can’t say that I was surprised about it, because I had guessed it from the beginning on the book.

the not so good

-The Length
This was a monstrosity of a book. It was huge and long, and oh boy, that was not fun to get through. Very, very, long.

-The Pacing
I think it was because of the length, but the pacing wasn’t great. I would get bored at some parts and have to resist a desire to skip through. Not all of it was bad, just some of it was a bit frustrating and extraneous I felt.

Did it really need to be so long?

more thoughts

Really, the length of this book is intimidating, and this book does have a lot that happens, but mostly it feels like it is setting up for the next book in the series. Hopefully it will improve from this one. Will I read the next one?

Yes, yes I will. I might not read it right away however.

Evangeline Fox was raised in her beloved father’s curiosity shop, where she grew up on legends about immortals, like the tragic Prince of Hearts. She knows his powers are mythic, his kiss is worth dying for, and that bargains with him rarely end well.

But when Evangeline learns that the love of her life is about to marry another, she becomes desperate enough to offer the Prince of Hearts whatever he wants in exchange for his help to stop the wedding. The prince only asks for three kisses. But after Evangeline’s first promised kiss, she learns that the Prince of Hearts wants far more from her than she’s pledged. And he has plans for Evangeline that will either end in the greatest happily ever after, or the most exquisite tragedy…


Once Upon a Broken Heart takes place in the same world as Caraval. I enjoyed the series, but I was unsure if I was going to actively pick up OUABH. Thankfully for me, Fairyloot was including it in a subscription box and therefore I didn’t have to fuss with whether I wanted the book or not. (I’m glad I got it, because I did enjoy it immensely!)

This book can be read without having read Caraval. Characters that appear in Caraval do appear in this one, and events are mentioned, but honestly, it stands on its own well. This is nice because in some ways I liked this book more than the Caraval series. Why? Well, there are several reasons I liked this book more. I found the characters more fascinating, and there was a bunch of intrigue going on, which I always love when that is included in a book to do with royalty. I also found the characters more dynamic overall.

And nothing is ever as it seems with this book. I adore our main character, Evangeline. I love her personality and I love that she tries to see the best in everyone, and just…there was something magical about her. I adored her.

And oh, Jacks, you infuriated me in the best of ways. I wanted to strangle and slap you in equal measures. Like I said, I have many feels about Jacks. Jacks is one of those characters that is morally grey, so if you like that type of thing, you will LOVE him for that.

Plus, there’s the prince as well – and you can’t forget the stepsister either! (And a few Fates tossed in for fun as well) I mean…what could go wrong? (Everything.) One thing Garber always does really well is sibling relationships. I loved it just as much in this one as I loved it in the Caraval series.

My head was whirling through this entire book because the CAST WAS AMAZING. We have so many characters and not many answers. It was a guessing game, and I guessed wrong every time. (I’m apparently a terrible guesser)

Anyways, I did enjoy the book, and I can’t believe how long I have to wait for the next book to come out. I do not want to have to wait!

When Margaret Welty spots the legendary hala, the last living mythical creature, she knows the Halfmoon Hunt will soon follow. Whoever is able to kill the hala will earn fame and riches, and unlock an ancient magical secret. If Margaret wins the hunt, it may finally bring her mother home. While Margaret is the best sharpshooter in town, only teams of two can register, and she needs an alchemist.

Weston Winters isn’t an alchemist–yet. Fired from every apprenticeship he’s landed, his last chance hinges on Master Welty taking him in. But when Wes arrives at Welty Manor, he finds only Margaret and her bloodhound Trouble. Margaret begrudgingly allows him to stay, but on one condition: he must join the hunt with her.

Although they make an unlikely team, Wes is in awe of the girl who has endured alone on the outskirts of a town that doesn’t want her, in this creaking house of ghosts and sorrow. And even though Wes disrupts every aspect of her life, Margaret is drawn to him. He, too, knows what it’s like to be an outsider. As the hunt looms closer and tensions rise, Margaret and Wes uncover dark magic that could be the key to winning the hunt – if they survive that long.


3.5/4 stars

I adored Down Comes the Night when I got an ARC of it back last fall. It was stupendous and everything – so I was so pleased when I was sent an eARC of Saft’s next novel, A Far Wilder Magic. I was humming with excitement! A Far Wilder Magic combines magic and a quest together in a way that works. Much like Saft’s debut novel there is much to love about this new one. I was delighted by it. I can see the inspiration Saft got from Fullmetal Alchemist in terms of characters, especially if you like the ship Roy/Riza. Plotwise it isn’t at all similar.

First, Saft’s writing is stupendous. It is stellar. I cannot exclaim enough about how much I love it. It is sumptuous. Ugh I can’t even explain just how much I love it. But her writing does so much, it crafts feelings and atmospheres. I live for this type of writing and Saft just excels at it. You will just want to drown yourself in this writing and bathe and live in it forever. Yes, I am ridiculous.

“Alchemy is neither progress nor salvation. It’s the stench of sulfur she can’t scrub out of her hair. It’s packed suitcases and locked doors. It’s blood and ink on the floorboards.”

I loved Margaret in this book, I found her to be a strong character. I loved her perspective and her strength. I also loved Wes! Wes was a great character as well. He was sweet and delightful. I loved getting to see these two characters fall in love (despite not liking the Roy/Riza FMA ship they seem to be based off of) because it was done SO WELL. Saft always does an amazing job with romances, and this was no exception. It was truly well done. I wanted to cuddle Margaret and Wes.

I think the pacing in this book is also good, you get time to become invested in the characters and what happens to them, but it also isn’t boring which can happen sometimes. Thankfully it doesn’t happen here! This is a slow-paced plot, and it isn’t really about the hunt, but more about relationships, so there isn’t a huge amount of action/adventure.

It’s a personal issue – but my ONE big issue – with the book is that because I am so familiar with FMA I kept comparing all the characters/relationships to it, and so sometimes I fell out of the book. And that’s a me thing – not a book thing! This is all on me. If you’ve never heard or seen FMA, this isn’t going to be a problem for you. I will also say a line, “all is one, one is all” is ripped directly from FMA which is “one is all, all is one”. That really bugged me because that was specific to the series. I love the homage to this series but sometimes I felt like I was reading a very well written AU fanfic. (I love fanfic, so this isn’t necessarily bad, I just wasn’t really expecting it.)

Overall, this is a lovely book!  

When a reaper comes to collect Wallace Price from his own funeral, Wallace suspects he really might be dead.

Instead of leading him directly to the afterlife, the reaper takes him to a small village. On the outskirts, off the path through the woods, tucked between mountains, is a particular tea shop, run by a man named Hugo. Hugo is the tea shop’s owner to locals and the ferryman to souls who need to cross over.

But Wallace isn’t ready to abandon the life he barely lived. With Hugo’s help he finally starts to learn about all the things he missed in life.

When the Manager, a curious and powerful being, arrives at the tea shop and gives Wallace one week to cross over, Wallace sets about living a lifetime in seven days.

By turns heartwarming and heartbreaking, this absorbing tale of grief and hope is told with TJ Klune’s signature warmth, humor, and extraordinary empathy. 


oh no oh NO

I was so excited for this book that I preordered the signed, sprayed edges edition from Waterstones. The book is stunningly gorgeous, I will say that. Last year, House on the Cerulean Sea topped my list of favorite 2020 books. And previously his indie series were some of my favorites. I went into this book expecting to love it, especially because so many people said it made them ugly cry. I was prepared; I brought tissues and everything for my lunch break, 100% prepared to have to explain to my coworkers why I was sobbing my heart out in the middle of the day. Little did I expect…that I wasn’t going to like the book.

While I didn’t hate the book, I also didn’t love it either. It’s a firmly middle ground book that I might try again in half a year or something. As I read it, I just found…I struggled to get into it. I like books with lots of characterization and character focus. Addie LaRue for example. I VERY much enjoyed that book. But this one…just didn’t work for me in the same way. It was slow, but slow in a way that I found uninteresting at best. Which is odd, because I love slow books. Just…something didn’t click with me in regards to this book.

The concept of the book was very neat, and I thought that was interesting, but I kept having to restrain the urge to skip through parts where I felt nothing was happening, plot wise or character wise. Which was very frustrating for me because I was trying to get myself to like the book.


I also liked the variety of characters that were included in the book. I think they could have been so much more interesting, but for the most part I felt apathy about them all. On top of that the romantic relationship just didn’t work for me.

I also love Klune’s writing. He’s got such a great writing style, but in this case, the book overall didn’t work for me with his writing style. I don’t know what happened.

This is one of those books that is going to go on my shelf because it’s a special edition and one that I might see if a change of mood will make me like it.

Suffice to say I am heartbroken and disappointed that I didn’t love the book.

King Midas made me the woman I am today. Notorious. Unattainable. His.

The thing about being confined is that you believe it’s to keep the bad out… Until you realize it’s about keeping you in.

I’m now in a strange kingdom surrounded by liars, with no allies of my own, but I won’t sit idly by and let myself wither. No, there’s something that’s bloomed from the pit of my repression. Something dark. Something angry.

But the last thing I expected was for my anger to call out to him. King Ravinger.

He’s sinister and powerful and entirely too seductive. I’ve learned my lesson with trusting manipulative kings, so why does my chest constrict every time he’s near? I need to tread carefully, or I’m at risk of losing much more than just my freedom.

Regret and revenge war inside of me, and I need to figure out a plan fast before I get tangled up in the schemes of kings and queens.

Because I won’t be caught in a cage again. No, this time, It’ll be me setting the trap… I just hope my heart comes out of this unscathed.


This is my favorite of all the books so far. The payoff is totally worth it in this one. We finally see Auren become strong and sure of herself. We see her become the person we knew she was going to become. But we also get to join in on a little political intrigue between King Ravinger and King Midas. And the interplay between the two of them has some of the best moments in this book. Kennedy really shows off her writing talents in this one.

While I didn’t mind the pacing in the previous ones, in this we do get much better pacing, AND even better plot. I feel like the series is really picking up at this point. And I am definitely rooting for Auren. And Rip. Both of them. That was another great development is their relationship in this book. I feel that we’re finally starting to see them open up. And Auren realizes that she can trust and doesn’t have to be trapped in a cage. Their relationship is definitely swoonworthy.

This book is steamy in the best of ways (finally!) and I loved every moment of it. I loved how Kennedy wrote this book, her writing is as good as ever.

This book is almost impossible to talk about without spoilers – but if you can get past Gild, somewhat enjoy Glint, Gleam is where all the payoff is. This book has everything I could love and more. This was a total five star read for me, and has me eagerly waiting for the fourth book in the series. I think I may combust if I don’t get to read it soon.

We finally also get some more concise worldbuilding and more backstory and secrets are revealed. I do feel like we finally get some payoff, and this was the most enjoyable book of the bunch.

Rip and Auren forever!!!! My heart beats for them. Also the entire Fourth. They are all so freaking amazing and I definitely would love to see more of them!

For ten years, I’ve lived in a gilded cage inside King Midas’s golden castle. But one night changed everything.

Now I’m here, a prisoner of Fourth Kingdom’s army, and I’m not sure if I’m going to make it out of this in one piece. They’re marching to battle, and I’m the bargaining chip that will either douse the fire or spark a war.

At the heart of my fear, my worry, there’s him—Commander Rip.

Known for his brutality on the battlefield, his viciousness is unsurpassed. But I know the truth about what he is.

Fae.

The betrayers. The murderers. The ones who nearly destroyed Orea, wiping out Seventh Kingdom in the process. Rip has power sizzling beneath this skin and glinting spikes down his spine. But his eyes—his eyes are the most compelling of all.

When he turns those black eyes on me, I feel captive for an entirely different reason.

I may be out of my cage, but I’m not free, not even close. In the game of kings and armies, I’m the gilded pawn. The question is, can I out maneuver them?


Glint is book 2 in the plated prisoner series. I liked the first one, but this one is where things really get good. This book is very slow compared to the first book. It feels a bit like nothing is happening at the beginning, but that isn’t quite the truth. Auren is slowly figuring herself out, but she has yet to leave that gilded cage Midas has set up for it. Auren is aggravating in turns. But honestly Rip is totally worth it in this book. He is probably my favorite character of them all. We also get some of the Fourth in this book and get to know more background characters.

We also get more worldbuilding in this one! Yay! I love good worldbuilding. Even if they are mostly trekking through a tundra…anyways. Yes, some of it was boring, but Auren finally starts to get some sense knocked into her. She is kind and she cares immensely, and she struggles to make friends with the saddles.

When a secret is revealed she has to make a bargain…and it doesn’t really benefit her. Auren is still stuck in her belief that Midas saved her – which is ANNOYING but we began to get a bit of romantic tension between Rip and Auren and that is amazing to read about.

Honestly, I liked this book because it was further developing all the characters. As we get towards the end of the book my suspicions begin to be confirmed. I will admit I was not surprised in the least at the reveal that we got at the end of the book. It was predictable, but it definitely wasn’t a bad thing at all.

I also enjoy the fact that the fae in this book don’t seem to be like all the fae in others. It is a nice difference.

Overall, I’m obviously really enjoying this series.

The fae abandoned this world to us. And the ones with power rule.

Gold.

Gold floors, gold walls, gold furniture, gold clothes. In Highbell, in the castle built into the frozen mountains, everything is made of gold.

Even me.

King Midas rescued me. Dug me out of the slums and placed me on a pedestal. I’m called his precious. His favored. I’m the woman he Gold-Touched to show everyone that I belong to him. To show how powerful he is. He gave me protection, and I gave him my heart. And even though I don’t leave the confines of the palace, I’m safe.

Until war comes to the kingdom and a deal is struck.

Suddenly, my trust is broken. My love is challenged. And I realize that everything I thought I knew about Midas might be wrong.

Because these bars I’m kept in, no matter how gilded, are still just a cage. But the monsters on the other side might make me wish I’d never left.


First off, Gild is my new obsession. I am literally obsessed with it (and the entire series). I was a little nervous going into it, but I am so glad that I read it. It has quickly become one of my favorite adult indie fantasies. It deserves all the praise that it gets, and rightfully so! This book does come with a lot of trigger warnings, so make sure you check them out before you pick this book up, as I am sure some of them will be triggering. Anyways, aside from that disclaimed I will rec this to people who love complex characters, fae and SJM/JLA books.

Auren is a prisoner to Midas. (We hate Midas FYI. We do not stan). Auren’s sitaution is terrible and untennable. I wanted to throw my kindle across the room on SEVERAL occassions because Midas pissed me off so bad. He’s a great antagonist, but a terrible person. Do not like. Auren is a great character. She starts off reserved and very weak, she believes Midas in everything he does. THey have a past together which is slowly revealed. Auren has to learn to be strong after a traumatic even leaves her essentially stranded and alone among people that dislike her. It’s at this point the book turns around.

I will admit, I struggled to get through the first half of the book – but I pushed through and am so glad I did, because we meet some of my favorite characters later in the series.

I did enjoy the worldbuilding in this book, but it wasn’t all that fleshed out, it left a bit to be desired to be honest. I will say some of it was interesting, but at other times it was a bit confusing. I think it could have used more refinement.

What I really did enjoy was the writing. I love Raven Kennedy’s writing style. It made the parts of the book I didn’t like go a lot faster, but the book was continually on the move and the pacing was well done. The plot was as well, it kept me hooked until the end.

I’m stopping my review here because I binge read all three, and I don’t want to include spoilers for book 2 on this review. Suffice to say, I really did enjoy this book overall, even with the parts that I didn’t like.

Leon

I earned my reputation among magicians for a reason: one wrong move and you’re dead. Killer, they called me, and killing is what I’m best at.

Except her.

The one I was supposed to take, the one I should have killed – I didn’t.

The cult that once controlled me wants her, and I’m not about to lose my new toy to them.

Rae

I’ve always believed in the supernatural. Hunting for ghosts is my passion, but summoning a demon was never part of the plan. Monsters are roaming the woods, and something ancient – something evil – is waking up and calling my name.

I don’t know who I can trust, or how deep this darkness goes.

All I know is my one shot at survival is the demon stalking me, and he doesn’t just want my body – he wants my soul


Her Soul To Take is a great steamy paranormal romance, and was quite well written. This was another Lauren recommendation, and I’m so glad that I picked it up. It was a fairly quick read overall, and was on KU which made me happy. I originally gave this three stars, but on further thinking I think it’s between a three and four stars for me.

I have always loved paranormal romances and this one was a good one too! It involves summoning a demon and a woman. I really liked Rae as a character. I found her strong and endearing. And sometimes a bit in denial. But I just loved that she felt so empowered. She knows what she wants which is a nice change of pace from some characters who don’t.

Leon was a great demon. I loved his relationship with Rae and the world at large. He was a great character because he was a demon but not necessarily evil, which is a juxtaposition to the humans who are evil. I liked that take on it very much.

The banter between Leon and Rae is great, they have an undeniable chemistry and snark with each other. There are several parts that made me laugh out loud. And this book is SUPER steamy. But it also has a bit of a dark tone to it, so be sure you look at the trigger warnings before you read it.

There are a few side characters who are really awesome as well, and I enjoyed all their introductions in this book. I assume they will be in the later books?

The writing was really good. I found myself becoming absorbed in this world and drawn into it. Laroux crafted a world that is so good. But it is also highly atmospheric. You could get lost in this book. It felt so real – and I liked that about it.

I loved the plot – I was on the edge of my seat wondering what was going to happen next, and if our leading couple would emerge triumphant. Sometimes you’re not sure with these dark romances…anyways, the plot was great. As I mentioned earlier the juxtaposition between good and evil in this book was creative, and I felt drove home the point that what you think is true is not always necessarily true.

I would recommend this book to those who like paranormal romances and are looking for something a little different and well written! 

Seventeen-year-old Iris Hollow has always been strange. Something happened to her and her two older sisters when they were children, something they can’t quite remember but that left each of them with an identical half-moon scar at the base of their throats.

Iris has spent most of her teenage years trying to avoid the weirdness that sticks to her like tar. But when her eldest sister, Grey, goes missing under suspicious circumstances, Iris learns just how weird her life can get: horned men start shadowing her, a corpse falls out of her sister’s ceiling, and ugly, impossible memories start to twist their way to the forefront of her mind.

As Iris retraces Grey’s last known footsteps and follows the increasingly bizarre trail of breadcrumbs she left behind, it becomes apparent that the only way to save her sister is to decipher the mystery of what happened to them as children.

The closer Iris gets to the truth, the closer she comes to understanding that the answer is dark and dangerous – and that Grey has been keeping a terrible secret from her for years.


I’ve recently started to like horror books more and more. Not if they’re more dystopian though, so when I saw the cover for this one I was very intrigued and curious. I waited quite a bit before I read it because I was so hesitant. I read Horrid last year and I liked it, but wasn’t blown away. This book and cover reminded me a bit of that. Therefore I was quite hesitant to go into this book. Now that I’ve read it I feel that it is the perfect spooky book for fall. There are a lot of spine-tingling aspects of this book that sent chills down my spine.

What about it was so good? Well, first off the writing was excellent. It was an easy to read book, and I felt that it brought a lot to the table in terms of writing. The atmosphere that Sutherland evoked was excellent. It kept you on the edge of your seat the whole time you were reading this book. I couldn’t stop turning the pages because I wanted to know what was going to happen next. In this way the pacing of the book was also so good. It was page turning for sure. Can I call this book Stephen King lite? It felt a bit like that to me. A tiny bit of gothic aspect also made me think Mexican Gothic. Anyways, as I said the whole theme of it was excellent. Or like TJ Kingfisher.

The plot had me guessing all the way through. I never would have guessed the ending it made my mouth pop open in surprise when I got to that part! I absolutely could not believe it!

I enjoyed the characters and the sisterly relationships as well, they were done well and made the book so much spookier. This book wasn’t heavy on romance at all which was nice. I felt like it made the book mostly about the sisters and their relationships with each other, rather than romances they had.

Family played a huge roll in this book as do other worlds. I felt that the aspects of family that were incorporated were interesting and heightened the tension in the books, between the sisters and the sisters and their mother.

 I highly recommend this book to anyone who enjoys spooky page-turning reads and doesn’t mind a bit of mind-bending in the process.