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review 2019-07-02 16:28
Out tomorrow
Princeless Vol 8: Princesses - Jeremy Whitley

Disclaimer: ARC via Netgalley.

 

                There is so much to love about the Princeless comics, and this volume in the collections give us stories featuring Adrienne’s sisters and the goblins.  The sisters each get one story (though the twins have to share) and one story for the goblins.  The goblin story is the most direct comment on modern politics in the book – it is hard not to see Trump and Hilary on the stage.  The story will play on a different level for adult readers than younger readers.  The goblin story also brings back the Goblin Captain who aided Adrienne and Belinda.

 

                But the main focus of the collection are the Ashe citizens, and while the art, to my mind, isn’t as good as the artwork in some of the other volumes (hence a 3.5 star rating instead of a 4), it was wonderful that the other Ashe sisters got a chance to shine as while as moving the story slightly forward to the coming conflict that was set up at the end of volume 7.

 

                The first story features Alize and her Sphinx.  It is set in the past, so how Alize formed her community and met her husband is addressed. Then Angelica learns that she is more than just a pretty face by playing a game that looks familiar.  Angoisse learns that she doesn’t need a man, but just a focus.  The goblin story follows Angoisse’s story (which makes sense).  Then finally, the twins appear as they struggle to put aside sniping at each other long enough to help people.  In many of the stories, the Black Knight makes an appearance, tying the stories together in another way as well as pointing towards the future of the series.  Even in Angoisse’s tale where the Black Knight does not show up, there are hints that her adventure is connected to the larger issues playing out in the series.

                The particular strength of this volume is the different ways in which the princesses learn and become more secure in who they are.  Adrienne, who stars in the other volumes, is physically strong - she is not dumb – but her talent lies in the physical.  Here, in these stories, we have sisters whose talents are not the physical but that rest on a different type of learning.  Alize learns from books (and other teachers), the twins studied magic, Angoisse learns by studying human behavior, and Angelica by watching.  While the sisters who were more immature, gain more maturity in these stories, they don’t lose their essential selves.  Angelica might become more than a pretty face, but she also still loves fashion.  The great thing about Princeless is that strength is being shown in so many different ways, not just in terms of Adrienne and Devan, but, now, more fully in terms of each sister.  This putting worth on talents other than simply physical or looking beautiful is wonderful.

 

                The stories do feature humor.  The two funniest are Angoisse’s and Angelica’s.  Angelica’s story has some great descriptive phrases, and Angoisse’s makes excellent use of the Squint Spiderslayer and the Grimmorax.  The best line comes from the Grimmorax who asks Angoisse, “Are you telling me you want to be weaker so you can find a man who can protect?”  And when Angoisse answers in the affirmative replies, “Do you need me to explain how stupid that sounds?”.  In some ways, Angoisse’s story is the most powerful because she learns the value of herself.  The weakest story, maybe because it is trying too hard for laughs, is the story of the twins, though that makes excellent use of the magical knowledge.  Additionally, weak is a relative term for this collection.

 

                Can’t wait to see what happens next.

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review 2019-06-02 00:41
Wyvern's Mate - Deborah Cooke

 

To earn his freedom from solitary confinement on the penal colony of Xanto, Troy must assassinate a princess of Incendium. He thinks the princess doesn’t stand a chance since he is a mindbender. Her father has agreed to free her from all other responsibilities if she completes one task – Princess Drakina must seduce her destined mate and conceive the crown prince of Incendium. She is sure it will be a quick seduction and then she can return home and live the life she wants to live. But when all secrets are revealed, will the truth turn them against each other or will destiny allow this star-crossed pair to save each other and their unborn son?

 

Wow, this space dragon princess and her destined mate are attention grabbing characters that are strong and vivacious. Their encounter starts off with different goals and with underhanded intentions but the powerful attraction between them changes everything. The chemistry is electrical, the romance is fun, daring, sweet and passionate with an adventurous relationship that makes readers can really enjoy.

 

The plot is fast paced and full of exhilarating suspense, and a heroine whose personality leaps from the pages while Troy is the strong, sexy warrior. The story is full of unique elements in an engaging and fascinating world that make for a delightfully entertaining read that readers can’t put down.

 

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url 2018-05-03 15:54
Girl Doesn’t Take Her Mate’s Crap in this YA Fantasy Romance Novel
Protector (Princesses of Myth Book 1) - Joanne Wadsworth
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review 2018-03-19 17:04
Basically, sisters suck . . . plus magic~
Daughters Of The Storm - Kim Wilkins

Disclaimer: Reviewing pre-publication paperback ARC/proof copy.

 

This wasn't the right fit for me, but the quality of writing and storytelling was excellent, so I'll try to give some detail so you can figure out if it's a match for your own tastes.

 

This is the story of five sisters as they try to save their father (the king) from a magical curse. Only, being as how they're sisters, they mostly fall prey to rivalries and selfishness and do more harm than good. It wasn't clear from the copy I had, but this looks like the first in a series, which makes a lot more sense. I found it pretty depressing, as it seems to be an excellent argument for sticking to one child per family, and it also delves into the sex lives (and terrible choices) of each sister, and as a general rule I find a person's sexuality to be the least interesting part of them. But, y'know, tastes differ and all that. It's adult fantasy, not really romance, so the scenes don't get excessively explicit or drawn out. Somewhere from 1-3 of the sisters have some level of spiritual/magical powers that get tangled with some potential psychosis, so that part was interesting and has potential. It was a surprisingly fast read considering its size.

 

I'm not terribly knowledgeable when it comes to high fantasy subgenres - this might be considered grimdark? Or crossover literary-fantasy? Not really to my tastes, but the writing was very well done and the storytelling was smooth, if a little slow at the start. It switches perspectives between all five daughters, their stepmother, their stepbrother, and maybe a couple more, I don't really remember, so that does make it hard to get into the story and build attachment to the characters up front. It was a fascinating choice in terms of storytelling and suspense, though, since it really lends itself to exploring the moral ambiguity and deceitfulness of characters. They each portray themselves as sympathetic and make observations on the others, and then you switch POV and get a different look at the same people and actions. So I think this would be an excellent book for the right reader (review: 3/5 for taste, 5/5 for quality), but just not right for me.

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review 2017-10-27 19:02
So Romantic Vampires May Not Be My Thing Anymore
Princesses of the Night: Royal Blood - Teresa Fuentez,Tich Brewster

I feel like I'm really in the minority here but overall, I didn't enjoy "Princesses of the Night." Tanya is a college student who lives with 3 other roommates and they all happen to be best friends. These four individuals own and operate a book store (I'd like to know how that came to be because yea, all college students can own their own business at such a young age). On the way back from a Halloween party, Tanya and her friends are walking home when they are beckoned into a dark alley but a mysterious stranger. For a brief second (and I mean brief), they think something is off but then they enter the alley and soon follow this stranger home. Once there, they are all bitten and turned into 4 vampires, who are destined to save the vampire world as we know it.

First of all I felt this book was super choppy. It was under 250 pages yet had something close to 50 chapters. The format just wasn't working for me. Secondly, the characters made stupid decision after stupid decision. But that's not to say there weren't a few things I enjoyed because I did. I liked how the author portrayed the whole "vampire family" thing. Tanya and her friends were able to meet up with another vampire couple sired by the same "father" and once they did, I enjoyed the book a tad bit more. Also, I liked the "bad" vampires who are trying to kill Tanya and her crew and truth be told, I'd have probably enjoyed a book from their point of view more.

Overall I'm kind of done with the romantic vampire thing which isn't really the author's fault. I like my vampires dark, gritty and vicious and not love struck and silly. I'm sure plenty of people will enjoy this book and if you love vampire romance, it might be a book for you. Me though, I won't be finishing with the series even though this one ended on a huge cliffhanger. In my head, they all die, end of series.

I received this book from Xpresso Book Tours in exchange for an honest review.

 

I'm using this for the Vampire square of my 2017 Halloween Bingo

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