Fantasy Review: Roar by Cora Carmack

Roar by Cora Carmack

Published by: Tor Teen

Format: Ebook and Audiobook

Genre: Romance/Fantasy

Order at: Amazon | B&N

Reviewed by: Madison

What to Expect: An unlikely hero, conflicted villains, and a lot of secrets.

Plot:

Aurora Pavan comes from one of the oldest Stormling families in existence. Long ago, the ungifted pledged fealty and service to her family in exchange for safe haven, and a kingdom was carved out from the wildlands and sustained by magic capable of repelling the world’s deadliest foes. As the sole heir of Pavan, Aurora’s been groomed to be the perfect queen. She’s intelligent and brave and honorable. But she’s yet to show any trace of the magic she’ll need to protect her people.

To keep her secret and save her crown, Aurora’s mother arranges for her to marry a dark and brooding Stormling prince from another kingdom. At first, the prince seems like the perfect solution to all her problems. He’ll guarantee her spot as the next queen and be the champion her people need to remain safe. But the more secrets Aurora uncovers about him, the more a future with him frightens her. When she dons a disguise and sneaks out of the palace one night to spy on him, she stumbles upon a black market dealing in the very thing she lacks—storm magic. And the people selling it? They’re not Stormlings. They’re storm hunters.

Legend says that her ancestors first gained their magic by facing a storm and stealing part of its essence. And when a handsome young storm hunter reveals he was born without magic, but possesses it now, Aurora realizes there’s a third option for her future besides ruin or marriage.

She might not have magic now, but she can steal it if she’s brave enough.

Challenge a tempest. Survive it. And you become its master.

Review:

I stumbled upon this book when looking for an audiobook for a long car ride. Following a week of the flu, this book has become my constant companion. I highly recommend for sick days and long car rides. First and foremost I love our heroine. Aurora is an unlikely heir. She doesn’t show a lick of magic to protect her kingdom and she is forced into hiding by her mother for the fear that someone may find out her secret. She is then arranged to marry with a brooding and dark prince named Cassius from the kingdom of Locke. Don’t get heart eyes on me yet. Carmack does an amazing job at stringing you along to trust this prince and then shatters your heart within the first few chapters. I am one of those readers who will always love the first romantic interest. It’s like I have some loyalty to them. This book was the exception.

Without giving too much away Aurora finds herself in the black market of magic and teams up with a group of magical hunters. What do they hunt? Storms. Aurora cleverly devises a plan to leave with them under the guise of her new identity, Roar. Roar is bold, unafraid, and relatable. The hunters are suspicious of her. This is not a “buddy buddy perfect friendship” kind of book. The relationships are complicated and they should be. Though this is set in a fictional world I found myself relating to a lot of the characters for their human flaws.

What you might not like/doesn’t work for you: There is nothing I truly disliked. If I had to pick one thing I wish when Aurora transitioned to Roar there was a bit more awkwardness to it. Sometimes she felt so strong. She was sheltered for years. There is a description in the book that her servants were changed out so often they only knew what herbs to put in her bath. I think in the beginning when she trusted Cassius that showed this naive girl. But I wish it carried a bit more into that transition. It’s not a huge thing because there were awkward and naive moments throughout.

What you will love: The story is completely original. If you are looking for some high fantasy that you feel like you haven’t read before, this is it!The world the author built was quite lush and dynamic.


Madison is our newest reviewer here at Binge on Books! When not working on her own first novel, she loves reading YA & Fantasy and listening to podcasts.

You can get in touch with her on Twitter: @MPMarkerWrites

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Binge on Books Top Books of 2017: Madison’s Favorites

Madison’s top reads of the year

Cannot believe 2017 went by so quickly. 2/3 of my top books this year have been read within the last month. But overall it was a great year for the book community.
In no particular order…
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Romance Review: One True Loves by Taylor Jenkins Reid

One True Loves by Taylor Jenkins Reid

Published by: Washington Square Press

Format: E-book

Genre: Romance

Order at: Amazon | B&N | Publisher

Reviewed by: Madison

What to Expect: A well written story that forces you to reflect on the different versions of yourself. Prepare yourself with tissues. Read More

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Fantasy Romance Review: The Cold King by Amber Jaeger

The Cold King by Amber Jaeger

Published by: Amber Jaeger (Self Published)

Format: E-Book

Genre: Romance/Fantasy

Order at: B&N  |  Amazon

Reviewed by: Madison

What to Expect: With the new Beauty and the Beast, expect a more adult retelling of the story! Read More

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Sports Romance Review: See Jane Score by Rachel Gibson

Title and Author: See Jane Score by Rachel Gibson

Published by: HarperCollins Publisher

Format: E-Book

Genre: Sports Romance

Order at: Amazon | B&N | Publisher

Reviewed by: Madison

What to Expect: A fun typical romantic comedy book with a lovable and realistic protagonist with a dash of hockey! Read More

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Quickie Romance Review: The Mermen Trilogy by Mimi Jean Pamfiloff

Tmermenitle and Author: The Mermen Trilogy (Box Set) by Mimi Jean Pamfiloff

Published by: MiMi Boutique

Format: E-Book

Genre: Romance/Fantasy

Order at: Amazon

Reviewed by: Madison

What to Expect: A daring story about a man and a woman who defeat the forces of evil. (With lots of steamy scenes in between)

Read More

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Top Books of 2016 from Binge on Books

I asked, they answered: so today we have…the Best Books of 2016 from everyone here at Binge on Books!

Our task? To pick one favorite book of the year, just one, and after a lot of grumbling, and dirty looks, and twitter angst, Erin, Alisa, Alex, Madison, Sara, Anya, Abbi (and me! Judith!) compiled our favorites just for you. So in no particular order I give you… Read More

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Romance Review: About a Girl by Lindsey Kelk

 About a Girl (Tess Brookes Book #1) By Lindsey Kelk

Published by: HarperCollins

Format: Nook

Genre: Romance/Fiction

Order at: Amazon | B&N

Reviewed by: Madison

What to Expect: An unexpected heroine makes an extraordinary leap of faith and ends up on her arse!


 

Plot: Tess Brookes has always been a Girl with a Plan. But when the Plan goes belly up, she’s forced to reconsider.

After accidentally answering her flatmate Vanessa’s phone, she decides that since being Tess isn’t going so well, she might try being Vanessa. With nothing left to lose, she accepts Vanessa’s photography assignment to Hawaii – she used to be an amateur snapper, how hard can it be? Right?

But Tess is soon in big trouble. And the gorgeous journalist on the shoot with her, who is making it very clear he’d like to get into her pants, is an egotistical monster. Far from home and in someone else’s shoes, Tess must decide whether to fight on through, or ‘fess up and run…

Review: First, I downloaded this book when I was in desperate need of some chick lit a few months ago and I forgot I had it. I read the prologue and I distracted myself with other novels I was reading. Why did I do this? Cause I’m a total idiot! Once I picked it back up I devoured it. I didn’t want to put it down. I read it everywhere I went. It was everything chick lit should be: somewhat predictable with a dose of humor and tastefully done romantic scenes. The characters at first felt familiar and Kelk did a great job at bringing them off of the page and making them three-dimensional. I rooted for Tess as she made mistakes and found herself. I wanted her to find love and actually felt torn between two love interests at one point. Some things I could definitely see coming since the beginning but Kelk kept it interesting and zany. I related to Tess a lot. I felt like she wasn’t a perfect heroine that was so beautiful your eyes fall out of your head. She had her issues that weren’t clichéd.

What you might not like/doesn’t work for you: I don’t like books where I can predict the ending. I won’t spoil anything but I knew from the beginning who a certain character would end up being. Sometimes the connections between Tess and said character above felt forced and a little too romantic. But hey, when you pick up a romance book you have to let your guard down about these kinds of things and just go with it.

What you will love: Lindsey Kelk is amazing at building romantic relationships. Her timing was really great and I loved her dialogue. I actually caught myself smirking while reading this in public. I truly loved all of her characters and their quirks. Even the ones that aren’t so likable she does a great job at making them realistic.


screen-shot-2016-09-16-at-12-09-08-pmMadison is our newest reviewer here at Binge on Books! When not working on her own first novel, she loves reading YA & Fantasy and listening to podcasts.

You can get in touch with her on Twitter: @MPMarkerWrites

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Countdown to Halloween: Reviewer Madison talks Fall Favorites

countdown-with-bob

I’ve just made a leap of faith from humble New Jersey to sunny Florida. It is still in the high 80s here and I went swimming in a pool yesterday. This is not my normal mid October I’m used to. My body doesn’t quite comprehend that Halloween is only a few weeks away and there are creepy clowns running around the U.S. Creepy clown epidemic aside… I love Halloween! I love picking pumpkins, drinking cider, those little cookies with the ghosts and pumpkins on them (I eat more of the raw dough than the cookie), and lots of candy corn. Aside from dancing the Monster Mash with my five-year-old niece as we put up fun window stickers and colored lights, we are all excited to know if she is going to be Snow White or Ariel. It’s totally tough being five. We introduced her to the Time Warp and she was totally digging it. Did anyone realize that the Rocky horror Picture Show remake will be on TV soon? I sound like a puppy chasing my own tail. Call me basic but I am so excited for everything fall.

I’ve always been a fan of black and white Halloween movies from Bela Lugosi in Dracula to Gene Wilder in Young Frankenstein. I still get excited when the 13 Nights of Halloween movie marathon comes on ABC Family (Now Freeform… I’m not ready to commit). There is nothing like watching Hocus Pocus or The Nightmare Before Christmas before bed.

I’m a bit braver when it comes to books. Some of my favorite stories actually come from the children’s genre. I had a substitute in elementary school read my class the book “Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark” by Neil Shusterman and Alvin Schwartz. Needless to say I checked it out of the library the very next day and love picking up the book. It’s a compilation of short scary stories with many different twists. There are also sequels to the book but nothing is like the original. They give just enough scare appropriate for a child but enough to make an adult question in their mind, “What if that happened to me?” I’d recommend this book for kids who aren’t easily scared and maybe to read during the day.

Going toward the YA genre I’ve always loved the Touch Series by Laurie Faria Stoltz. The first book is called “Deadly Little Secrets”. The series follows 16-year-old Camelia and her romance with a boy with a huge secret. She receives eerie phone calls, threats, and she is hearing voices. There is a paranormal essence to the series. I remember reading this in the middle of the night when I was 14 (I so should have been asleep) and having to put it down because of how spooked I was. This book is a nice balance of typical high school YA but isn’t too young for an adult to enjoy. Aside from movies and literature, I enjoy prancing around Bath and Body Works to find the most fall smelling candle without being overwhelmed by cinnamon. This year’s winner: Cider Lane. It smells like a smoky caramel apple. You won’t regret it.


screen-shot-2016-09-16-at-12-09-08-pmMadison is our newest reviewer here at Binge on Books! When not working on her own first novel, she loves reading YA & Fantasy and listening to podcasts.

You can get in touch with her on Twitter: @MPMarkerWrites

 

 

 


 

 

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YA Fantasy Review: The Crown’s Game by Evelyn Skye

skye-2Title and Author: The Crown’s Game by Evelyn Skye

Published by: HarperCollins Publishers

Format: E-Book

Genre: Young Adult/Fantasy

Reviewed by: Madison

What to Expect: A gripping story of magic and romance set in a fantasy world based on the Romanov’s Russia. Read More

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