Wednesday, July 19, 2017

Blog Tour: Wesley James Ruined My Life


Hello all! Today we are apart of a blog tour for a very exciting summer read! We hope you enjoy it, and that you pick it up this summer too!

31145064Wesley James Ruined My Life by Jennifer Honeybourn

Released: July 18th, 2017
Read: July 2017
Publisher: Swoon Reads
Format: Paperback ARC, 256 pages

Summary from Goodreads:

Sixteen-year-old Quinn Hardwick’s having a rough summer. Her beloved grandmother has been put into a home, her dad’s gambling addiction has flared back up and now her worst enemy is back in town: Wesley James, former childhood friend—until he ruined her life, that is.

So when Wesley is hired to work with her at Tudor Tymes, a medieval England themed restaurant, the last thing Quinn’s going to do is forgive and forget. She’s determined to remove him from her life and even the score all at once—by getting him fired.

But getting rid of Wesley isn’t as easy as she’d hoped. When Quinn finds herself falling for him, she has to decide what she wants more: to get even, or to just get over it. 

Review:

This book was the quintessential beach read. Honestly it was the kind of light book that you sometimes NEED during vacation, and it didn't disappoint. While it had a predictable and somewhat cliche plot, the backstory more then made up for it. Q is a likeable girl who (like me) loves England, and needs to make cash in order to go. Her relationships with her parents are complex (what with her gambler of a dad) and in many ways she is a fully developed character. Then in comes Wesley who "ruined" her life a while ago, who is stirring some new feelings in her. In my opinion it was stupid that she blamed him for the divorce of her parents. Like really Q? You really thought that he was the one to reveal to your mom that your dad lost his job? How dumb and naive can you be? But whatever. Wes is SUPER hot, and his reporte with Q is extremely cute, something that really drives the book forward. Their love/hate relationship is super fun and cute to watch, and it was perfect to lazily read on a summer day, outdoors with a lemonade in hand!

Rating: 7.5/10

Recommended for people who enjoy: sweet rom-coms, summer romances, England

Interview with the author:

Q: What was it that inspired the novel? (was it a summer romance of your own, simply a thought that came to you in the shower, etc.) How much of the story did you personally connect with?


A: I was inspired to write a book set at a medieval theme restaurant after attending a renaissance faire back in 2013. I loved the setting and I thought it gave me a lot to play with. I knew I wanted to write an enemies to lovers story, but there’s no real basis from my own life reflected in Quinn and Wesley’s relationship. The part I’m most personally connected to is Quinn’s relationship with her grandmother. My grandmother didn’t have Alzheimer’s but I was very close to her and I borrowed some of the feelings I had when my grandmother passed away for this novel.

Be sure to check out the rest of the tour!
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Happy reading,
Mari

Monday, July 10, 2017

Book Review: Traitor's Kiss



The Traitor's Kiss by Erin Beaty

29346870Released: May 9th, 2017
Publisher: Imprint
Pages: 352
Format: Paperback, ARC

Summary from Goodreads:

An obstinate girl who will not be married. 
A soldier desperate to prove himself. 
A kingdom on the brink of war.

With a sharp tongue and an unruly temper, Sage Fowler is not what they’d call a lady―which is perfectly fine with her. Deemed unfit for marriage, Sage is apprenticed to a matchmaker and tasked with wrangling other young ladies to be married off for political alliances. She spies on the girls―and on the soldiers escorting them.

As the girls' military escort senses a political uprising, Sage is recruited by a handsome soldier to infiltrate the enemy ranks. The more she discovers as a spy, the less certain she becomes about whom to trust―and Sage becomes caught in a dangerous balancing act that will determine the fate of her kingdom.


Review:

Going into this book, I was expecting it to be almost exactly like a Jane Austen novel. And it was, for the most part. The language was very "olde timey" and it had a feel for a classical love story. The twist being, that the main female lead is stronger than that of Austen's typical heroines, and that shes a spy. 

This novel was a fun read, but was reeeaaaallllllyyyy slow to get into. I am a HUGE Austen fan, and was excited to read a YA "version" of her work. But this was tough. Since I don't believe in DNFing anything, I pushed through. And it got really good. Once the action started, it kept moving, and it kept me at the edge of my toes. But like I said, it was really long to get into.

My favourite part of this book was (of course), the strong female lead. Sage is loud and very unladylike. She does what she wants, when she wants it. It's really easy to like her, because of the rich backstory that she has (very tragic, very Jane Austen). She falls in love with a soldier, and the road to true love is very rocky. 

The only thing novel/plot wise that made me really upset was the confusing strategy that the soldiers used, where they switched their names to stay undercover. As you could probably tell, it got confusing FAST. It was really hard to keep who was who straight. Other than that, it was a fun read, and I'll probably look out for book two. 

Favourite Quote:  “We don’t always like what’s good for us,” she said. “Especially at first.” 
― Erin Beaty, The Traitor's Kiss

Rating: 7.5/10

Recommended for people who enjoy: spy novels, romance, Jane Austen, historical fiction

Happy Reading,
Mari

Monday, June 12, 2017

Audiobook Tour: Darkside Blues


Hello all! Today we have a real treat for you; an audiobook tour! Be sure to enter the giveaway and listen to the previews we have for you! Without further ado, here it is!

Author: Ambrose Ibsen

Narrator: Jake Urry

Length: 5 hours 43 minutes

Publisher: Ambrose Ibsen⎮2017

Series: The Ulrich Files

Genre: Horror

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Synopsis:

"Ghosts don't simply latch onto places, investigator. People can become haunted, too."

A missing person. A city plunged into unforgiving winter. A dangerous spirit.

Though enjoying an increase in business following his last case, life isn't all roses for private investigator Harlan Ulrich. His newest job, another missing person's case, is unlike any other he's ever taken on.

Local businessman Michael Poole hires Ulrich to find his estranged daughter.

The problem?

She's been dead for a decade.

Join Ulrich on a trip into the darkness, into the frostbitten underworld, as he seeks out a hateful phantom with only a cat and a thermos of good coffee on his side.

Buy on AudibleAmazon


Limited copies of the first two installments of The Ulrich Files audiobook are available for interested reviewers on The Audiobookworm's Adopt-An-Audiobook page.




About the Author

Once upon a time, a young Ambrose Ibsen discovered a collection of ghost stories on his father's bookshelf. He was never the same again.

Apart from horror fiction, he enjoys good coffee, brewed strong.

Ambrose Ibsen has penned numerous horror and thriller titles, including The Ulrich Files, Transmission, The Demon-Hearted Series and the Winthrop House Series.
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About the Narrator:



Jake Urry has been narrating and producing Audiobooks since February 2016, and in that time has released 17 titles, including The Cryptic Lines by Richard Storry, White is the Coldest Colour by John Nicholl, and the PI Harlan Ulrich series by Ambrose Ibsen. His narration work is often dark and suspenseful, and he developing a reputation for Mysteries, Thrillers and Horrors. In 2017 Jake will be working on more work by John Nicholl and Richard Storry, along with a sprinkling of Fantasy adventures.
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Audio Excerpt: 

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Giveaway:



Darkside Blues


Did you like the post? Be sure to check out the rest of the tour for more content!


May 31: Reading for the Stars and Moon (Spotlight + Audio Excerpt, Giveaway)
Audio Audits (Spotlight + Audio Excerpt)

Jun. 1: Book Lover's Life (Review & Giveaway)

Jun. 2: Lomeraniel (Spotlight + Audio Excerpt, Giveaway)
Seitenwinde (Review & Giveaway)

Jun. 3: Dab of Darkness (Review & Giveaway)

Jun. 4: Ronelle Antoinette (Spotlight & Giveaway)

Jun. 5: CGB Blog Tours (Spotlight + Audio Excerpt)

Jun. 6: Blogger Nicole (Spotlight + Audio Excerpt, Giveaway)

Jun. 7: A Book and A Latte (Review)

Jun. 8: The Book Addict's Reviews (Review, Spotlight & Audio Excerpt)

Jun. 9: Read Day and Night (Review)

Jun. 10: Ali the Dragon Slayer (Review & Giveaway)

Jun. 11: Spunky-n-Sassy (Spotlight & Audio Excerpt)

Jun. 12: The Autumn Bookshelf (Spotlight + Audio Excerpt, Giveaway)
Shhh I'm Reading (Spotlight & Audio Excerpt)

Jun. 13: Life at 17 (Review)


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Let us know what you think in the comments below!

Love, Your Friends at
The Autumn Bookshelf

Tuesday, June 6, 2017

Blog Tour: Plains of Sand & Steel

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Displaying Plains of Sand & Steel.jpgPlains of Sand & Steel by Alisha Klapheke

Released: June 16th 2017
Publisher: Alisha Klapheke
Pages: 325
Formats: Paperback, eBook
Buy links: Amazon, Barnes and Noble

Summary from Goodreads:

A ruler’s young bride with a body to conceal, a mercenary bent on revenge, and the Fire magic that will alter their story forever.

The Wrath and the Dawn meets Truthwitch in the second standalone, full length novel of the Uncommon World series.

When her new royal husband dies at the beginning of an invasion, Seren must hide his body and use the visions the Holy Fire gives her to save the Empire from itself and its enemies. But if the high-ranking general who hates her discovers her secret, he’ll have her put to death.

When invaders slaughter Ona’s family and shatter her artist life, she joins Lucca, an experienced mercenary and her exact opposite, and heads into war. She just knows the “chanting” she can do—imposing one’s will on the world and watching it come to life—will break the invaders and give her sweet vengeance.

Both want to save the Empire but with tangled histories and new passions swirling around them, their divided motivations turn a possible victory into a deadly storm.

Join the battle today!

Make sure to grab the companion novels in the Uncommon World Series!
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WATERS OF SALT AND SIN
Displaying WoSaS.jpgAmazon | B&N | TBD

                                         FEVER

                                         Amazon 


About Alisha: 
Displaying Alisha.jpgAward-winning author Alisha Klapheke wants to infuse your life with unique magic, far-flung fantasy settings, and romance. Her inspiration springs from medieval art and artifacts, the world travel she enjoys with her husband, and the fantasy she grew up reading when she was supposed to be doing her math homework. 
When she's not writing, Alisha teaches Thai kickboxing, Brazilian jiu jitsu, and krav maga at her family's dojo just outside of Nashville. That may be why writing fight scenes is her favorite.

Kathleen Rushall of Andrea Brown Literary Agency represents Alisha in all things books.

Website | Twitter | Facebook | Goodreads | Instagram


And now to the guest post!


What is the role that female empowerment plays in your novel? What were the challenges of writing a feminist narrative in a fantasy land ruled by a patriarchal society?
Hello and thanks for having me!
So you asked about the role of female empowerment in Plains of Sand and Steel. In the story, Seren and Ona are both powerful, albeit in very different ways.
Seren is quiet but determined in doing what she believes needs to be done in the Empire. She lets the overbearing figures in her life shout and bluster while she works in the background, nodding and thoroughly ignoring any demands she feels aren’t working toward her people’s good and what she wants.
There is nothing quiet about Ona. She simply refuses to be cowed by the men in her life. Aside from Lucca, she hasn’t met someone strong enough to bend her will in the slightest bit. Ona actually longs for someone like Lucca, but not Lucca, who will challenge her and give her a good argument, a way to sharpen her steel, so to speak. Even Dom, the vicious leader of their mercenary group, can’t quell her drive to do as she sees fit. Ona does occasionally listen to Lucca’s advice, and he to hers, because they have a good, close relationship of mutual respect. He is older and more experienced in their world, and Ona does sometimes take that into consideration. Later in the story, we’ll see changes in Ona, but I don’t want to spoil anything so that’s all I say. :)
In this fantasy version of an ancient world, some women enjoy freedoms most women in the real ancient world did not. In the Uncommon World, women are warriors and leaders in some areas. You see more of this in the first standalone, Waters of Salt and Sin. In Plains of Sand and Steel, the area is more male dominated—influenced by the ruler there and his cohorts. Ona and Seren come up against several overbearing men early on in the story and they bust through the men’s obstacles in their own ways.

I hope the girls and women who read my stories are reminded that no matter what anyone—man or woman—says, their goals and beliefs are valid and deserve full devotion. I also want my readers to see that every person is different and to be sure not to simply judge a person on their sex. Men are just as varied as women. Some are jerks. Some are heroes. Some have days being a bit of both. Just like women. I hope my readers see Seren and Ona (well at some point in their arcs) as examples of women who refuse to let the bullies in their lives ruin their chance at accomplishing their goals.
Giveaway Details: 1 winner will receive signed paperbacks of WATERS OF SALT AND SIN, FEVER, and PLAINS OF SAND AND STEEL & Swag (Stickers & A Signed Map), AND Paperbacks of AIR AWAKENS by Elise Kova & FIRST YEAR by Rachel E. Carter, US Only. 3 winners will receive eBooks of WATERS OF SALT AND SIN, FEVER, and PLAINS OF SAND AND STEEL, International.
a Rafflecopter giveaway




Be sure to check out the rest of the tour!
Week One:
6/5/2017- MNBernard Books- Interview
6/5/2017- Pooled Ink- Review

6/6/2017- Rachel's Book Reviews- Review


6/7/2017- Novel Novice- Excerpt

6/7/2017- Hooked To Books- Review

6/8/2017- Taking It One Book at a Time- Review

6/8/2017- Bibliobibuli YA- Review

6/9/2017- Wandering Bark Books- Excerpt

6/9/2017- PC Book Reviews- Guest Post

Week Two:

6/12/2017- Fiction Fare- Guest Post
6/12/2017- What the Cat Read- Review

6/13/2017- Two Chicks on Books- Interview

6/13/2017- Why I Read- Review

6/14/2017- Booklove- Review

6/14/2017- Just Another Bookaholic- Spotlight

6/15/2017- Crystal's Chaotic Confessions- Excerpt

6/15/2017- BookHounds YA- Review

6/16/2017- BookBriefs- Review

6/16/2017- Page Turners Blog- Review
Let us know what you think of the guest post and of the book itself!
Your friends,
The Autumn Bookshelf

Monday, June 5, 2017

Book Review: The Thousandth Floor


24921954
The Thousandth Floor by Katharine McGee

Released: August 30th 2016
Read: May 2017
Publisher: HarperCollins
Format: Paperback ARC, 448 pages
Series: The Thousandth Floor No. 1

Summary from Goodreads:

NEW YORK CITY AS YOU'VE NEVER SEEN IT BEFORE.

A thousand-story tower stretching into the sky. A glittering vision of the future where anything is possible—if you want it enough.

WELCOME TO MANHATTAN, 2118.

A hundred years in the future, New York is a city of innovation and dreams. Everyone there wants something…and everyone has something to lose.

LEDA COLE’s flawless exterior belies a secret addiction—to a drug she never should have tried and a boy she never should have touched.

ERIS DODD-RADSON’s beautiful, carefree life falls to pieces when a heartbreaking betrayal tears her family apart.

RYLIN MYERS’s job on one of the highest floors sweeps her into a world—and a romance—she never imagined…but will this new life cost Rylin her old one?

WATT BAKRADI is a tech genius with a secret: he knows everything about everyone. But when he’s hired to spy for an upper-floor girl, he finds himself caught up in a complicated web of lies.

And living above everyone else on the thousandth floor is AVERY FULLER, the girl genetically designed to be perfect. The girl who seems to have it all—yet is tormented by the one thing she can never have.

Amid breathtaking advancement and high-tech luxury, five teenagers struggle to find their place at the top of the world. But when you're this high up, there's nowhere to go but down....


Review:
Holy shit, this book was super addictive! I couldn't put it down for the life of me! This was a total mystery from start to finish and it was intense. Each character developed in their own way and it was captivating from start to finish. I couldn't wait to find out who the murdered girl was, so I read all day to find out! My favourite character was Rylin, as I am clearly a sucker for a rags to riches/romance from the wrong side of the tracks story. It was so cute to watch her fall in love with the boy above floors. This book was a real thrill ride from start to finish, and I really didn't see many of the twists and turns that came into play. However, I did wish that the soft-core incest was not apart of the plot (possible spoiler? Probably not, since it was revealed pretty early on...).  But regardless, the plot made up for it. I really can't wait until the next book to see what happens with all the characters. 

Favourite Quote:
“If you aren't sure, then you definitely aren't in love.” 
― Katharine McGeeThe Thousandth Floor


Rating:
8/10 Stars

Recommended for people who love: futuristic stories, romance, teen drama 

Happy reading,
Mari

Thursday, May 18, 2017

Blog Tour: For Beau: The Sarah Ashdown Story


For Beau tour banner.jpg

Hello all! Today we are hosting a tour for YA Bound, and this historical fiction book sounds awesome! Let us know what you think in the comments!

For Beau: The Sarah Ashdown Story 
by Simon Gandossi
For Beau cover.jpg

Genre: Historical Fiction 
Release Date: December 15th 2016 

Summary from Goodreads: 
The ground shook with each bomb that fell on London. The night sky lit up, and the sounds ofgunfire overwhelmed the city as our brave men fought back. It took so many bombs to fall onthis great city to make the Germans realize that England could not be defeated. It took just one bomb to make one woman realize her true destiny. Sarah Ashdown's insurmountable guilt and remorse over the death of a young girl sets in motion one of the most unbelievable stories of World War II. An ordinary housewife who defied the odds to become one ofthe most wanted women in occupied Europe, her story of determination and courage will shock and inspire those who read it.

Add to Goodreads
Buy Links:
Amazon l Barnes and Noble l Smashwords l iTunes 

About the Author:
simon gandossi.jpgSimon Gandossi is a historical fiction author who was born and raised in Western Australia. From an early age, Simon discovered a passion for history and writing. It is that passion combined with his desire to bring to light the different aspects of the past that makes him a unique writer. There are a lot of people who give up so much to follow their dreams, and Simon is no different. To become a professional writer is difficult, but his hard work and determination has seen him develop from an amateur to a full-time writer in just a few years. To learn more about Simon, please visit www.simongandossi.com. 
"I want everyone to take a step back in time when they read my books. Every book should take the reader on a journey. With my dedication to preserving history, I know that each and every person will begin that journey from the very first word" - Simon Gandossi

Author Links: WebsiteGoodreadsTwitterFacebook 

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Blog Tour Organized by: 


Your Friends,
The Autumn Bookshelf

Saturday, May 6, 2017

Book Blitz: Air and Ash


We are so excited that AIR AND ASH by Alex Lidell is available now and that we get to share
the news!
If you haven’t yet heard about this wonderful book by
Author Alex Lidell, be sure to check out all the details below.
This blitz also includes a giveaway for a finished
copy of AIR AND ASH & a copy of A COURT OF WINGS AND RUIN by Sarah J. Maas,
International, courtesy of Alex and Rockstar Book Tours. So if you’d like a
chance to win, enter in the Rafflecopter at the bottom of this post.

About the Book:


Title: AIR AND ASH
Author: Alex Lidell
Pub. Date: May 2, 2017
Publisher: Danger Bearing Press
Pages: 284
Formats: Paperback, eBook
Find it: AmazonB&N, Goodreads

Master and Commander
meets Tamora Pierce in a seafaring adventure of duty, love, magic, and a
princess’s quest to protect her kingdom on her own terms. 

After a lifetime of
training, seventeen-year-old Princess Nile Greysik, a lieutenant on the
prestigious Ashing navy flagship, sails into battle with one vital mission—and
fails.

Barred from the sea and
facing a political marriage, Nile masquerades as a common sailor on the first
ship she can find. With a cowardly captain, incompetent crew, and a cruel,
too-handsome first officer intent on making her life a living hell, Nile must
hide her identity while trying to turn the sorry frigate battleworthy. Worse, a
terrifying and forbidden magic now tingles in Nile’s blood. If anyone catches
wind of who Nile is or what she can do, her life is over.

But when disaster threatens
the ship, Nile may have no choice but to unleash the truth that will curse her
future.

AIR AND ASH is the thrilling first installment of the TIDES series.
Recommended for fans of Sarah J. Maas, Tamora Pierce, and Naomi Novik.

Excerpt:
My breaths come quick, my
side vision a blur of sand. The horses rear, showing their bellies and hooves.
When Red turns to the beasts, I crash into him. The impact ricochets through
me. I drop my rock.
Red staggers but remains
standing.
I wrap my arms around Red
and draw the other pistol from his waistline even as he throws me to the
ground. I land in a heap and breathless, but my hands still clutch the gun.
Inconveniently, the bloody
weapon is as much a danger to me as to the men. It bucks in my hand, yielding
to the natural pulse of Clay’s uncontrolled magic. Rising to one knee, I move
the barrel between Bald and Red. “Stop,” I command. “All of you.”
Three sets of eyes grip me.
None give a sign of recognition. I little blame them—having spent most of my
life aboard an Ashing ship, the only people who’d reliably recognize me are
those I’ve served with. This Felielle trio is unlikely to recognize even Thad
outside the throne room, or think twice if they heard my name absent
salutation.
My palms are moist, but I
know better than to let the fear slip into my voice. “I believe the man has
understood your message,” I say.
Clay’s dog chooses that
moment to run up beside me and bare its teeth. Its low growl leadens the air
between us.
One heartbeat stretches
after another, punctuated by the break of waves and the horses’ snorts. My
breaths come quick and shallow. I’m unlikely to miss at this range, but the
pistol is good for one shot only.
Bald squints. “What’s your
stake in this?”
“A broken law and a bound
man.” I shake my head. The constant foreign presence in Ashing is a necessary
burden for now, but I hope to see it end after the war. “One pistol has fired
already, gentlemen. I expect the Ashing patrols are en route to investigate.”
Red scowls at me, likely
calculating whether he might knock me to the ground before I squeeze off the
trigger or the horses scamper. He probably can.
I scowl back, hoping the
thugs’ employer paid them too little to risk their hides so greatly. “I would
wager you will pay with your horses and backs if the patrols come upon us now.”
Bald snorts and makes a
decision. “Is the lady correct, Domenic? Has the message penetrated?” He lands
a vicious knee in the man’s abdomen.
Domenic’s jaw tightens, and
he has to draw a breath before he can speak. “I have a debt.” His voice is
steadier than I had expected. “I will pay it.”
“Why, that is all we wished
to hear in the first place.” Bald pats Domenic’s shoulder and turns away, then
twists back and punches Domenic’s jaw as an afterthought. “A pinch of a memory
aid.” He chuckles at his joke and, accepting the reins from Red, swings into
the saddle. The horses neigh and pick up a gallop, eager to be away, and I
raise my free arm to shield my eyes from the flying sand.



About
Alex:


Alex Lidell is an avid horseback rider, paramedic and ice cream addict.
Born in Russia, Alex learned English in elementary school, where a thoughtful
librarian placed a copy of Tamora Pierce’s ALANNA in Alex’s hands. In addition
to becoming the first English book Alex read for fun, ALANNA started Alex’s lifelong
love for YA fantasy books. Alex’s debut novel, THE CADET OF TILDOR, was an
Amazon Breakthrough Novel Awards finalist. Her second book AIR AND ASH releases
in May 2017.






Giveaway
Details:

1
winner will receive a finished copy of AIR AND ASH & a hardcover of A COURT
OF WINGS AND RUIN by Sarah J. Maas, INTERNATIONAL.






a Rafflecopter giveaway

Let us know what you think!
Your Friends,
The Autumn Bookshelf

Friday, May 5, 2017

Cover Reveal: The Dragons of Nova

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Today Elise Kova and Rockstar Book Tours
are revealing the cover for THE DRAGONS OF NOVA, which releases July 11, 2017!
Check out the gorgeous cover and enter to win assigned ARC of the book!!

On to the reveal! 



Title: THE
DRAGONS OF NOVA (Loom Saga #2)
Author: Elise Kova
Pub. Date: July 11, 2017
Publisher: Keymaster Press
Formats: Hardcover,
eBook, audiobook
Pages: 488
Find it: Amazon | B&N | TBD | Goodreads

Cvareh returns home to his sky world of
Nova with the genius crafter Arianna as his temperamental guest. The mercurial
inventor possesses all the Xin family needs to turn the tides of a
centuries-old power struggle, but the secrets she harbors must be earned with
trust — hard to come by for Ari, especially when it comes to Dragons. On Nova,
Ari finds herself closer to exacting vengeance against the traitor who killed
everything — and everyone – she once loved. But before Ari can complete her
campaign of revenge, the Crimson Court exposes her shadowed past and reveals
something even more dangerous sparking between her and Cvareh.

While Nova is embroiled in blood sport
and political games, the rebels on Loom prepare for an all-out assault on their
Dragon oppressors. Florence unexpectedly finds herself at the forefront of
change, as her unique blend of skills — and quick-shooting accuracy — makes her
a force to be reckoned with. For the future of her world, she vows vengeance
against the Dragons.

Before the rebellion can rise, though,
the Guilds must fall.

Exclusive Excerpt!

“They’re coming from the front!” Nora
screamed over the crescendo of the engine gaining speed. On cue, the train
lurched as an endwig was splattered to a bloody mess on the point of the
engine’s pilot.

“Bloody cogs,” Florence cursed. The
Vicar Alchemist had sent her to protect the mission as the Revolver, but one of
her wasn’t going to be enough. “I’m going to the engine.”

“What are we going to do?” The usually
self-sure Nora had the face of a cornered hare.

“You’re going to fight.” Florence passed
her a weapon.

“I’ve never shot a gun before.”

“Now is a great time to learn.”

“I’m an Alchemist!”

Seriously, Florence was a breath away
from shooting the woman herself. “You’re dead if you don’t adapt! There’s three
more bombs exactly like the ones you just used, right there. Just fend them off
until the train gets up to speed. But don’t use any other disks.”

Florence had no more time to waste as
the train lurched again. They just had to survive until the train reached full
speed. For all the endwig were, they certainly couldn’t keep up with a
locomotive.

She hoped.

The wind whipped her hair around her
face as she stuck her head from the train car. Florence reached out for the
ladder to the right of the door, scaling up before another endwig could emerge.
She swung up just in time as an explosion nearly blew her foot clean off.

“By the five guilds, you two only had
three bombs!” she screamed over the wind, not knowing if they could hear.
“Ration them a bit!”

Standing, Florence looked in horror at
the tracks ahead. Dozens of endwig lined the path, running eagerly to meet the
train. She loaded six canisters at once.

Jumping to the tender, Florence lost her
footing atop the moving train car. A nail snapped clean off as she sought a
grip that would prevent her from being thrown to certain death. If she fell
now, she would never get back on the vessel. She’d be torn limb from limb.

Gritting her teeth, Florence rose to her
knees, shooting two endwig in the process. She wedged herself between two
grooves on the top of the tender. Blood pooled around her shins as she dug them
into the metal for a grip where there was none, but she was stable enough to
take aim, and that meant she could open fire.

Five shots down, and Florence reloaded
her gun. Endwig came relentlessly like a never-ending nightmare. But the train
didn’t gain any more speed. She repeated the process, waiting for the vessel to
be like her bullets, whizzing through the night at deadly speeds.

“Anders, now would be a great time to
open her up!” she screamed.

There was no reply.

“Anders, Rotus, we need speed, get us
out of here faster!”

Five long claws curled around the door
of the engine in answer. Florence watched in horror as the white silhouette of
an endwig, dotted in the black blood of a Chimera, pulled itself from the
engine room. Florence swallowed hard.

They were without Rivet and Raven,
stumbling through the darkness, enemies at all sides. She raised her gun
slowly, looking fearlessly at the face of death itself. Her revolver was steady
over the rocking of the train.

“You think I’m not used to this?” Her
mouth curled into a mad grin. “I’ve been fighting my way out of the darkness my
whole life. And you’re not going to stop me now.”

Gunshots echoed through the forest.

About Elise: 



Elise Kova has always had a profound
love of fantastical worlds. Somehow, she managed to focus on the real world
long enough to graduate with a Master’s in Business Administration before
crawling back under her favorite writing blanket to conceptualize her next
magic system. She currently lives in St. Petersburg, Florida, and when she is
not writing can be found playing video games, watching anime, or talking with
readers on social media. She is the USA Today bestselling author of the Air
Awakens Series as well as the Loom Saga (Keymaster, 2017).












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