Showing posts from July, 2022

Wake the Bones / Elizabeth Kilcoyne / Book Review

After dropping out of college, Laurel Early just wants to return home, marry her high school sweetheart, and farm tobacco as her family has always done--with a taxidermy business on the side. But her sleepy little town won't let her forget where she comes from, won't let her forget who her mother was and what she did. Her mother, the whispers say, was a witch, and Laurel might be, too.  Laurel has been able to ignore the whispers, but she can't ignore the other signs. Things have changed since she left for college, and they're changing still. The woods are calling for blood, and the dead bones around the farm are waking. The devil has come calling for Laurel Early. He wants to court her like he courted her mother, and Laurel will have to unravel her mother's twisted legacy if she—or anyone else in this town—wants to make it out alive. 

The Stars Between Us / Cristin Terrill / Book Review

All her life, Vika has had a mysterious benefactor, someone who paid for her education and her medical bills but didn't otherwise interfere with her impoverished existence. It's been a few years since her benefactor has sent anything her way, and Vika believes this magic bit of her childhood is over. Until a billionaire magnate from the next planet over dies, willing his fortune to his only son... on the condition that his son marry Vika. Vika is shocked and appalled, but she doesn't have to decide whether or not to play into this dehumanizing plot (though she would; she definitely would). When her husband-heir dies in transit, the fortune changes hands yet again, and the new heirs invite Vika in as their ward. In a new world of dazzling finery and glittering parties, Vika is living a better life than she ever could have dreamed. But her husband's death was no accident, and whoever killed him isn't done yet, not with such a large fortune on the line. 

This Vicious Grace / Emily Thiede / Book Review

Three weddings, three funerals: a demon swarm is on its way, and only Alessa, goddess-chosen, can save her island. But her own magic isn't enough. She can only amplify the magic of another--the magic of her chosen spouse, who will stand at her side in battle. But Alessa has a problem (aside from the approaching demons): her spouses keep dying. Alessa can't keep her spouses alive long enough to train them, let along stand beside them on the battlefield. Worse, a local cult has declared her a deceiver, cursed instead of blessed, and is calling for her blood.  As the next round of suitors moves into the Citadella, Alessa hires a bodyguard to keep her safe until she's wed--a streetfighter named Dante. With only weeks until the demon swarm arrives to devour them all, Alessa needs to keep her eyes on her suitors, but she can't keep her eyes off Dante . And Dante has a secret or two of his own--which just might upset everything.

Frightmares / Eva V. Gibson / Book Review

Frightmares House of Horrors might be falling down around him, but Dave doesn't care. This is just a summer job, after all, a way to save up money for college in the fall. Cheap replicas and glitchy animatronics are held together with F/X blood--and the stellar acting of Dave and his coworkers, of course.   Improv is a must, and when one of Dave's coworkers no-call-no-shows for a weekend shift, Dave is resigned to an evening in the unfamiliar haunted mummy room, completed with malfunctioning haunted sarcophagus. When the animatronic mummy doesn't deploy, however, Dave discovers something awful: there is no mummy on the set tonight. The sarcophagus contains a real body instead. And when Dave returns with help in tow, the body is gone--and the killer still on the loose. 

The Charmed List / Julie Abe / Book Review

This is a summer for change. Ellie's got big plans, after all: a roadtrip with her best friend down the California coast with a magic convention at the end and, more importantly, an Anti-Wallflower Bucket List to complete along the way. This is the summer that Ellie will break out of her shell and finally start living life.  But a prank gone wrong changes all of Ellie's plans. Instead of the best-friend roadtrip she had planned, she gets stuck instead with Jack, the neighbor boy and heir to a rival magic shop. Once best friends, it's been years since Ellie and Jack have spoken with anything but malice. But now they're stuck together, transporting their parents' magical wares to the convention. Suddenly, Ellie's summer for breaking out of her shell because a summer of torture instead--particularly infuriating (and kind of cute) torture.