Author Archives: Sadie

Fire and Ice covers

Book Review: Fire and Ice series, K.F. Breene

Before I get to the review, a quick housekeeping note. I’ve returned to university and am now working on a Ph.D. As such, the time I can give to reading fiction (my favorite thing) is sadly constricted. It will likely take me a little while to find my feet and my new normal. But at the moment, I’m experimenting with reading and reviewing series instead of individual books. (I even made a whole post asking for omnibus recommendations.) This makes for longer posts a lot of the time but also allows for more time between postings. But I also acknowledge that I don’t usually tend to be quite as detailed when I’m reviewing several books together.  So, I may not stick with it. But for now, expect series reviews more often than individual book reviews.

OK, on to the review.


I tend to pick up any of K.F. Breene‘s books that I see pop up as freebies. Some of the series are really big, though. So, I also have a tendency to pick the books up and then ignore them for a while, assuming I don’t have them all. I grabbed Born in Fire in 2018, then Raised in Fire, and Fused in Fire in 2021.

Fire and Ice covers

Supernatural Bounty Hunter isn’t the sort of thing you see on LinkedIn. But with a rare type of magic like mine, I don’t have many options.

So dangerous or not, the job is mine. And it was going fine, until an old as sin vampire stole my mark, and with it, my pay day.

Knowing I’m poor and desperate, he has offered me a job. I’ll have to work by his side to help solve a top secret case.

Everyone knows not to trust vampires. Especially a hot elder vampire. But without any other jobs coming up, I’m stuck. As I uncover a web of lies and treachery, revealing an enemy I didn’t know existed, the truth of my identity is threatened. I might make it out alive, only to end up in a gilded cage.

my review

I suppose this series was OK. It definitely wasn’t a favorite of the Breene series I’ve read so far. I thought the world was interesting enough. And I liked the main character well enough. But I was just kind of underwhelming on the whole. Honestly, the side characters were my favorite part of the whole thing, and when the heroine and hero can so easily be outshone, there’s a problem of some sort.

Fire and ice trilogyI initially liked Reagan’s snark. But eventually, it just became a shtick. I liked that she’s strong and resourceful. But eventually, she just became so overpowered that the deus ex machina saves became the norm rather than the exception. I liked the love interest, but I never really felt the romance develop. 

So, all in all, I’d call this a middling read. It’s not bad enough that I regret reading it. But it’s also not good enough that I continued into the next part of the series (focusing on Penny), even though I have it.


Other Reviews:

Dyslexic Reader – Fire and Ice Trilogy

Book Binge – Fire and Ice Trilogy

 

 

 

 

Looking for Recommendations

Looking for Recommendations

I recently posted this over on TikTok, and honestly, I’m just sharing it here so that I can find it and the recommendations under it again. But also, if you see this and have a rec, drop it for me.

As I say, I’m sick to death of reaching the end of a book and having to decide if I want to buy the next one or not to reach a satisfying stopping point. So often these days, I come to the end of a book and don’t feel like I’ve reached any sort of conclusion; it’s just a stopping point because the book reached X number of pages. I’m exhausted by it.

I recently ended up reading a seven-book series because it took seven books to reach a conclusion OF ANY SORT. The thing is, I didn’t know I was committing to seven books when I picked the first one up. (This seems to be a trend lately.)

So, I’m seeking recommendations for standalone books and series that I can buy compilations of. That way, even if the individual books don’t stand alone, I’m not constantly facing the same ‘do I want to buy another book or just walk away’ question. I’m looking for anything in the monster romance or similar PNR genres. And I’m totally OK with authors self-recommending. Who knows better what series have omnibuses than the author?

Anyhow, here the Tikety-Tok:

@seesadieread sometimes I know going in that a book is a #cliffie, but often I don’t. I like to know if I’m committing to A book or 7 books before reaching a conclusion. #recsplease #bookrecommendations #bookrecrequest #monsterromancebooks #monsterromance #monstersmutreader #monstersmut #pleaseshare #bookrecs #ihatecliffhangers #cliffhangers #wethair #showerthoughts #decisionfatigue #decisionfatigueisreal #seesadieread #reader #bookreviewer #bookplans #compilations #compilationtiktok #pnr #smuttok #booktalk #paranormal #monsters #monsterlover ♬ original sound – SadieF

stariel covers banner

Book Review: Stariel Quartet, by A. J. Lancaster

Before I get to the review, a quick housekeeping note. I’ve returned to university and am now working on a Ph.D. As such, the time I can give to reading fiction (my favorite thing) is sadly constricted. It will likely take me a little while to find my feet and my new normal. But at the moment, I’m experimenting with reading and reviewing series instead of individual books. (I even made a whole post asking for omnibus recommendations.) This makes for longer posts a lot of the time but also allows for more time between postings. But I also acknowledge that I don’t usually tend to be quite as detailed when I’m reviewing several books together.  So, I may not stick with it. But for now, expect series reviews more often than individual book reviews.

OK, on to the review.


I initially saw A.J. Lancaster‘s Stariel Quartet recommended on Tiktok. It was on my radar. So, when I saw book one, The Lord of Stariel, come up as a Kindle Freebie, I nabbed it. Then I bought the rest of the series (The Prince of Secrets, The Court of Mortals, The King of Faerie, and A Rake of His Own) one by one as I finished each preceding book.
stariel covers banner

The Lord of Stariel is dead. Long live the Lord of Stariel. Whoever that is.

Everyone knows who the magical estate will choose for its next ruler. Or do they?

Will it be the lord’s eldest son, who he despised?

His favourite nephew, with the strongest magical land-sense?

His scandalous daughter, who ran away from home years ago to study illusion?

Hetta knows it won’t be her, and she’s glad of it. Returning home for her father’s funeral, all Hetta has to do is survive the family drama and avoid entanglements with irritatingly attractive local men until the Choosing. Then she can leave.

But whoever Stariel chooses will have bigger problems than eccentric relatives to deal with.

Winged, beautifully deadly problems.

For the first time in centuries, the fae are returning to the Mortal Realm, and only the Lord of Stariel can keep the estate safe.

In theory.

my review

I binged these books, reading them back to back with nary a breath between. So, I’m just going to go ahead and review them the same way. In a sentence, I adored this series. I will 100% be looking for more of Lancaster’s work.

I love a practical heroine, and Hetta is eminently practical. She’s also strong, loyal, brave, and witty. In fact, the whole cast (and the narrative itself) has a dry, witty character to it that I enjoyed. It startled more than one laugh out of me. I think it’s the narrative tone that I liked most about the books.

I also can’t tell you how much I loved the characters. Even the ones that I didn’t initially care for, such as Jack, I came to like in the end. (And the bonus book about Marius and Rake was a joy.) Family is important to each of them in their own way, and the reader feels this. I’d like to see a few other side characters get their happily-ever-afters.

The mystery was a little easy to predict, the villain overcome a tad too easily, and the pacing is a little off at times. But overall, I’m not sad to have read the series. In fact, I’ll miss it now that I’m finished.

stariel quartet photos

Other Reviews:

River.Me – Stariel Series Review