ARC Review | Strange and Ever After (Something Strange and Deadly, #3)

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Strange and Ever After

Author: Susan Dennard
Series: Something Strange and Deadly, #3
Genre: YA, Fantasy, Historical Fiction
Publisher: HarperTeen
Expected Publication Date: July 22nd, 2014
Format: eARC
Source: FFBC
Purchase: Amazon | B&N | Kobo | iBooks

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In the conclusion to the trilogy that Publishers Weekly called “a roaring—and addictive—gothic world,” Eleanor Fitt must control her growing power, face her feelings for Daniel, and confront the evil necromancer Marcus…all before it’s too late.

He took her brother, he took her mother, and now, Marcus has taken her good friend Jie. With more determination than ever to bring this sinister man to justice, Eleanor heads to the hot desert streets of nineteenth-century Egypt in hopes of ending this nightmare. But in addition to her increasingly tense relationships with Daniel, Joseph, and her demon, Oliver, Eleanor must also deal with her former friend, Allison, who has curiously entangled herself in Eleanor’s mission.

With the rising dead chomping at her every move and Jie’s life hanging in the balance, Eleanor is convinced that her black magic will see her through to the bitter end. But there will be a price. Though she and the Spirit Hunters have weathered every battle thus far, there will be consequences to suffer this time—the effects of which will be irreversible. And when it’s over, only some will be able to live a strange and ever after.

Susan Dennard will leave readers breathless and forever changed in the concluding pages of this riveting ride.

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** I received an advanced copy from HarperTeen via Edelweiss in exchange for an honest review.**

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First Impression

Something Strange and Deadly was a series I’d hear people talk about often but in all honesty I really had no idea that they were talking about. So I finally did my research, read the synopsis and I knew this would be a good series!! How often do you come across the combination of zombies in an historical setting? Never. While I did really want to read the books I never had the motivation to start them until I came across the blog tour. I went out and bought the previous books and dove head first into this world, and boy I’m happy I did!

Opening Lines

I was not suppose to be here. Oliver would be furious. Joseph even more so. This dock was the no-man’s-land between realms. It was a place for ghosts.”

The Good

Sometimes books can be predictable, okay most times, but especially when a series comes to an end. When I started Something Strange and Deadly I didn’t know what to expect, neither with A Darkness Strange and Lovely. Although, I have to admit I feel like A Darkness Strange and Lovely suffered a bit from middle book syndrome. But when it came to Strange and Ever After I thought I had it all mapped out. I didn’t think there would be any MORE surprises and I was beyond wrong. The thing that I loved the most about this book was the character development, through the past books we see Eleanor trying to come to terms with all that is right and wrong and I feel that as a final book she finally blossomed! Now Oliver and Daniel, I wasn’t sure what path she would take with these two characters and you won’t be able to either.

Now for the heartbreaking part: the ending. While I was getting closer and closer to finishing Strange and Ever After I started to realize where Susan was going. I screamed “NO!” at my book because I couldn’t believe she would actually do it, but she did! She gives you an ending you don’t really see coming, and although I hate it, it was the perfect and most fitting ending I could ask for. Lastly, I found that as each book was written Susan just kept on improving. Not to say that the previous books were written poorly, they weren’t, it was just that she was so descriptive in the final installment and I went through so many different feelings! I’ll leave you with two quotes that I loved and are the only ones that won’t really spoil anything. While this review can seem vague I just don’t won’t to spoil ANYTHING for anybody, because this book was beautiful as much as it was perfect and one I think everyone needs read.

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“…because I could not have my good-bye. My final “I love you”. There would be nothing.”

“Tears ran down my cheeks, but I didn’t mind. They were as common as spring rain these days-and I hoped just as cleansing.

The Bad

  • The fact that it had to come to an END!!! But really there is nothing I would consider bad.

The In-Between

  • Still haven’t come across anything.

Lasting Impression

Overall, Strange and Ever After is a beautifully written conclusion to this trilogy. I can’t express how much I want everyone to pick up this book! If you haven’t read this book yet, get it! If you haven’t read the previous books, go pick them up! Strange and Ever After won’t be released until July 22nd, so you have time! I’m so excited and looking forward to Susan’s next series Truthwitch that is expected to release sometime in 2015, let the waiting game begin.

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4.5 stars

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– One (1) hardback copy of Strange and Ever After (US only)
– One (1) E-book of Strange and Ever After (INT)
*Giveaway ends on July 22nd, 2014!*

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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I am a writer, reader, lover of animals, and eater of cookies. I used to be a marine biologist, but now I write novels. And not novels about fish either, but novels about kick-butt heroines and swoon-worthy rogues (I really like swoon-worthy rogues).

I live in the Midwest with my husband and two dogs (Asimov and Princess Leia), and you can learn more about my crazy thoughts and crippling cookie-addiction on my blog or twitter.

My debut, SOMETHING STRANGE AND DEADLY is now available from HarperTeen along with the prequel, A DAWN MOST WICKED, and the sequel A DARKNESS STRANGE & LOVELY.

Look for STRANGE & EVER AFTER in summer 2014 and TRUTHWITCH in fall 2015!

Note: I am on Goodreads to READ. So, if you want to discuss books and the joys of literature, add me as a friend.

Links: Website | Goodreads | Twitter | Facebook

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ARC Review | Wild

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Wild

Author: Alex Mallory
Series: Standalone
Genre: YA, Contemporary, Retelling
Publisher: HarperTeen
Expected Publication Date: July 8th, 2014
Format: ebook
Source: FFBC
Purchase: Amazon | B&N | iBooks | Kobo | Bookdepository

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In this action-packed and timely “Tarzan for the digital age,” Cade, a teen raised in the wilderness, is brought into modern civilization.

The forest is full of secrets, and no one understands that better than Cade. Foraging, hunting, surviving-that’s all he knows. Alone for years, Cade believes he’s the sole survivor. At least, until he catches a glimpse of a beautiful stranger…

Dara expected to find natural wonders when she set off for a spring break camping trip. Instead, she discovers a primitive boy-he’s stealthy and handsome and he might be following her. Intrigued, Dara seeks him out and sets a catastrophe in motion.

Thrust into society, Cade struggles with the realization that the life he knew was a lie. But he’s not the only one. Trying to explain life in a normal town leaves Dara questioning it.

As the media swarm and the police close in, Dara and Cade risk everything to get closer. But will the truth about Cade’s past tear them apart?

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First Impression

Tarzan retelling? WHAT!! There are many retellings out now a days, but how often do you come across one on Tarzan? I can’t think of any, it’s just so rare! Back in April after reading the synopsis I added it to my 2014 shelf and when I say there was a blog tour for it, well of course I had to sign up! I mean…it’s TARZAN!

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The Good

  • More plot, less romance – I loved that this was not a romance driven novel. I mean yes, you have a little bit of romance between Cade and Dara, obviously! But it was more described as two characters being interested and curious about each other. Wild has a solid plot, with romance floating in the background.
  • Writing style – Alex Mallory knows how to write! I found her writing to be very descriptive and has a beautiful lay-out which helped made me feel like I was actually IN the story! I like that she went with third person POV, it allows for readers to see different perspectives and get a real sense of what was happening.
  • Characters – I loved the two main characters; Cade and Dara! Cade, oh Cade. He’s just so adorable! My heart broke for him; being ripped away from the only world he knows and thrown into the world he didn’t know existed is just plain cruel. I just wanted to grab him and hold him and tell him everything was going to be okay!! Now Dara is a strong-willed individual, if she sets her mind to something it’s happening. There’s no way to change her mind. And the secondary characters had a bigger role in this than I expected, but liked! Cade and Dara had great chemistry together and even as individuals they brought a lot to this story.

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The Bad

  • Nothing really that I would consider bad.

The In-Between

  • Pace – I’m a little bit of an impatient individual and when I get to books that have long and slow chapters I tend to lose focus. Wild is a slow pace kind of story that bothered me, but it’s so well written that I didn’t want to DNF it.

Lasting Impression

Overall, Wild was a beautiful modern-day retelling of Tarzan. A little slow at times, but still a solid story! If you love Tarzan, retellings, or in the mood for a contemporary novel I recommend giving Wild a try!

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3.5 Stars


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Tour-Wide Giveaway!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

US Only | Must be 13 or older to enter

* A Wild Prize Pack Featuring:*
– a signed, finished copy of WILD
– a copy of Edgar Rice Burroughs’ TARZAN OF THE APES
a DVD (region 1) of Greystoke: Legend of Tarzan of the Apes
– bookmarks
+ a stuffed plush flu microbe. (US Only)

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Alex Mallory is a pen name for YA author Saundra Mitchell. She’s a big fan of reading, history, camping and competitive M&M sorting.

She once crossed a dilapidated train trestle in the middle of the night, 200 feet above the Wabash River, in a futile attempt to prove her love to someone who had no idea she existed.

1) She lived to tell about it. 2) It didn’t work. 3) She doesn’t recommend it.

Links: Website | Goodreads | Twitter

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Waiting on Wednesday (7): Gates of Thread and Stone

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**Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by Breaking the Spine that spotlights highly anticipated upcoming releases.**

Gates of Thread and Stone

Author: Lori M. Lee
Series: Gates of Thread and Stone, #1
Genre: YA, Fantasy, Science Fiction
Publisher: Skyscape
Expected Publication Date: August 5th, 2014
Format: Hardcover

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In the Labyrinth, we had a saying: keep silent, keep still, keep safe.

In a city of walls and secrets, where only one man is supposed to possess magic, seventeen-year-old Kai struggles to keep hidden her own secret—she can manipulate the threads of time. When Kai was eight, she was found by Reev on the riverbank, and her “brother” has taken care of her ever since. Kai doesn’t know where her ability comes from—or where she came from. All that matters is that she and Reev stay together, and maybe one day move out of the freight container they call home, away from the metal walls of the Labyrinth. Kai’s only friend is Avan, the shopkeeper’s son with the scandalous reputation that both frightens and intrigues her.

Then Reev disappears. When keeping silent and safe means losing him forever, Kai vows to do whatever it takes to find him. She will leave the only home she’s ever known and risk getting caught up in a revolution centuries in the making. But to save Reev, Kai must unravel the threads of her past and face shocking truths about her brother, her friendship with Avan, and her unique power.

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When it comes to Waiting on Wednesday I always pick a book that will be released the same week, the week after, or within that month. However, this doesn’t seem to apply for this weeks Waiting on Wednesday. All the books that are coming out this month I either got very lucky and got an e-ARC or I’m not THAT excited for it to be released and probably won’t buy it or read anytime soon. So I had to go and search for a book coming out in August!

I added Gates of Thread and Stone to my tbr shelf in May and when I first came across it on Goodreads all I saw was Fantasy and Time travel and I automatically added it to my shelf. And of course there was the beautiful design on the cover that caught my eye, can you blame me?! Look at that cover! It’s just so beautiful. At I later date I finally decided to read the synopsis and I was even more excited for its release!! There are 5 books in total for the month of August that I’m beyond excited for and Gates of Thread and Stone is #1! What are the other 4 you ask? You’ll just have to wait and see ;).

What book are you currently waiting on?!

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