Tag Archives: netgalley

the dark king banner

Book Review: The Dark King, by Gina L. Maxwell

I received a copy of Gina L. Maxwell‘s The Dark King through Netgalley.
the dark king cover

I thought a weekend away would be the perfect escape. Until I woke up married and trapped…by the king of the Dark Fae.

For Bryn Meara, a free trip to the exclusive and ultra-luxe Nightfall hotel and casino in Vegas should’ve been the perfect way to escape the debris of her crumbling career. But waking up from a martini-and-lust-fueled night to find herself married to Caiden Verran, the reclusive billionaire who owns the hotel and most of the city, isn’t the jackpot one would think. It seems her dark and sexy new husband is actual royalty—the fae king of the Night Court—and there’s an entire world beneath the veil of Vegas.

Whether light or shadow, the fae are a far cry from fairy tales, and now they’ve made Bryn a pawn in their dark games for power. And Caiden is the most dangerous of all—an intoxicating cocktail of sin and raw, insatiable hunger. She should run. But every night of passion pulls Bryn deeper into his strange and sinister world, until she’s no longer certain she wants to leave…even if she could.

Soooo, I didn’t love this. Granted, I didn’t hate it. But it elicited exactly zero feels from me or endeared itself to me in any way. Now, the writing is fine. It’s easy to read. The editing seems clean. So, this is largely a personal taste sort of ‘meh.’ I can acknowledge that it’s a finely written book, while also saying it wasn’t one to light me on fire.

I did actually like the characters. I especially liked that Bryn stands up for herself consistently. And the world seems interesting. My issues were that I just never truly felt Caiden and Bryn’s love. It’s instant and then we’re more told about it than shown it. I didn’t think that the BDSM aspects were well integrated into the plot. So, it always seemed to stand out to me as artificial. the dark king photoAnd it doesn’t live up to it’s own hype.

Caiden is supposed to be sooo dark and dangerous. He goes on and on about how she could never handle his kinks. Heck, the book is called The Dark King. But it’s actually quite sweet, the kink is on the mild side, and the book isn’t even that spicy, comparatively. So, I felt like it built up a promise it didn’t keep.

All in all, it’s a meh for me. I didn’t hate it. But I probably won’t remember it next week.


other Reviews:

One More Book: Review – The Dark King

 

kiss of darkness banner

Book Review: Kiss of Darkness, by Taylor Aston White

I picked up a review copy of Taylor Aston White‘s Kiss of Darkness through Netgalley. It was also featured over on Sadie’s Spotlight. You can hop over for an excerpt.

kiss of darkness cover

He despises her… almost as much as his beast craves her.

Kyra’s seen and survived the worst things imaginable, all because of the magic she was born with. Trapped by her secret, she has no choice but to serve Councilman Gallagher or risk everything she has tried so hard to build. Because despite black magic being banned, her very survival depends on it.

When she’s commanded to summon a Daemon, a Breed notorious for their corruption and brutality, she’s torn between keeping her secret and doing the right thing.

Xander’s hate for black witches was notorious, but nothing frustrated him more than the one witch that brings trouble with a capital T. With dark amber eyes, and a controlled strength that fascinated his beast – the monster he’s cursed to share a soul – Xander will do anything to push her away.

So when he’s forced into protecting her, he must put aside his prejudice and ignore his growing desire that’s an insult to his past.

Because he’s had an entire childhood to remember why you can’t trust black witches.

And he definitely can’t trust Kyra Farzan.

my review

This was fine, not exceptional in any way, but entertaining enough. Before I get into any specifics I have to have one major gripe, and it’s one I feel like I’m making constantly.

This book is very clearly labeled Book 1 of the Curse of the Guardians series. That’s why I chose to read it. However, I made it about 20% in and put it aside, went over to Goodreads, and read the blurbs of the author’s other books to find out what Curse of the Guardians is a spin-off of. Because at that point, I was 100% sure that Kiss of Darkness is one. The characters had met previously, previous events are referenced, the world-building was sketchy (as if I was meant to already know it), there was a strong couple that was clearly from another story-line, there were even internal jokes between characters that the reader was obviously meant to understand.

Point blank, no argument, if I can tell a book is a spin-off because I can feel previous books are missing, the book does not stand alone well enough to be a new series. And in those scenarios I kiss of darkness photocall the ‘book 1’ label a lie. I am super tired of having this happen.

OK, that’s my big gripe. Outside of that, the book is fine. I liked that Kyra is strong, even as she’s put in impossible situations. I never really took to Xander though. He was just kind of a bland, generic paranormal romance hero. But the writing is easily readable. And while there wasn’t anything that stood out as stellar in the plot, it wasn’t all out bad either.


Other Reviews:

Archaeolibrarian: Kiss of Darkness

Book Him Danno: Kiss of Darkness

 

 

nettle and bone banner

Book Review: Nettle & Bone, by T. Kingfisher

I received a copy of T. Kingfisher‘s Nettle & Bone through Netgalley.

nettle and bone cover

This isn’t the kind of fairytale where the princess marries a prince.
It’s the one where she kills him.

Marra never wanted to be a hero.

As the shy, convent-raised, third-born daughter, she escaped the traditional fate of princesses, to be married away for the sake of an uncaring throne. But her sister wasn’t so fortunate—and after years of silence, Marra is done watching her suffer at the hands of a powerful and abusive prince.

Seeking help for her rescue mission, Marra is offered the tools she needs, but only if she can complete three seemingly impossible tasks:
—build a dog of bones
—sew a cloak of nettles
—capture moonlight in a jar

But, as is the way in tales of princes and witches, doing the impossible is only the beginning.

Hero or not—now joined by a disgraced ex-knight, a reluctant fairy godmother, an enigmatic gravewitch and her fowl familiar—Marra might finally have the courage to save her sister, and topple a throne.

my review

I am just going to have to accept that I am a standing T. Kingfisher fan. I have enjoyed everything I’ve read by them. I’ll admit that this isn’t my favorite of their books that I’ve read—I thought it a little slow at times and sometimes I wanted a deeper conversation about things than we were given—but I sure did enjoy the heck out of it.

So much about Marra—who I am convinced is neuron-divergent—is relatable. She’s practical as all get-out and is getting the job done, but she’s an angsty, insecure mess the whole time she’s doing it. Yeah, I felt that in my very bones.

The romance is super subtle and I adored it. All of the side characters are marvelous and there is just enough absurdity that happens. (I laughed often.) I am sad to be finished and look forward to my next T. Kingfisher book.

nettle and bone photo


Other Reviews:

Review: Nettle & Bone by T. Kingfisher + Giveaway

NETTLE & BONE – T. KINGFISHER