Tag: Fantasy

Author Interview & Book Review: The Faerie Ring by Kiki Hamilton

Posted December 19, 2011 by Kimberly in Book Reviews, Interviews / 19 Comments

Title: The Faerie Ring

Author: Kiki Hamilton

Publisher: Macmillan

Publication Date: September 2011

Genre: Young Adult Fantasy/Historical Fiction

Series or Stand Alone: Series, Book One


Synopsis can be found here.

Review:


In 1871 London, our world and the Otherworld blur. Queen Victoria’s ring is lost, setting off a chain of events that may lead to an all out war with the Fey. The thief is a young girl named Tiki, an orphan who lives on the streets of London. Little did she know what she was going to start!
Trying to care for her family of orphans, Tiki is now being watched, and followed by humans and Fey alike. One of them is a fellow thief Rieker, but can he be trusted? And which side is he on, anyway?

The Faerie Ring blew me away. We start in the dirty, grimy streets of London where our heroine and her family are scraping by with what they can. Life is hard and while Tiki has a good heart, sometimes we all do things we can regret. (Like stealing Queen Victoria’s ring for instance!)

The darkness of London is the perfect setting for the Fey, who hover in shadows, preying on innocent people. The two worlds blend so well, it was easy to be completely lost in the story. The twists and turns in the book are unexpected, reminding me of running through the narrow streets of London. In fact, one particular twist at the end is so surprising, I had to read the passage twice!

Tiki is a very likeable character, sometimes making wrong decisions but always with good intentions. Rieker, another thief, is mysterious, handsome and a little bit dangerous. The attraction between these two is obvious as the banter goes back and forth easily. Do we trust Rieker? Should we? 

Overall, The Faerie Ring is a wonderful mix of fantasy, rebellion and mystery. I loved reading every moment of this book! 
Rating: 10, One of the Best



Author Interview with Kiki Hamilton!

Kimberly- Thank you so much for stopping by Kiki!
Kiki- Thanks so much for inviting me over to your blog!

What inspired you to become a writer? 
I’ve always loved to write but I was so busy with work and my family and life that I didn’t make the time to write. Then I read Harry Potter. (I didn’t actually start Harry Potter until the Goblet of Fire came out… I read books 1-4 in a week.) I’d forgotten the magic of a well-told story. The magic of becoming the characters in a book and experiencing their adventures. I loved Harry Potter so much that I decided I’d write a little story for my daughter and that’s when the madness all started…


What was the last book you read?  
I read REVOLUTION by Jennifer Donnelly recently and enjoyed that.

What sparked the idea of your book? 
I’ve always loved the idea of things not being what they seem. That other dimensions or worlds exist side by side with our own, just beyond our ken; that the scope of our world is more than just the three dimensions that we are able to easily comprehend.
At the same time, I’m intrigued by the past, by our history, by what may have occurred that might not have been formally documented for future generations. The untold story, if you will. And I am particularly fascinated with those untold stories that have a thread of documented fact woven through them, hich makes the reader question whether they are reading fiction or nonfiction. A story that makes the reader say… “What if…”

How did you choose the setting and time for your novel, which takes place in London 1871? (Do you have a time machine?) 
Victorian London is a mysterious and magical time in history.  It is an era of great change, great technological advances, yet at the same time, beliefs in the occult remained strong.  Additionally, the era offers a startling dichotomy between the classes and the way people lived, providing a great gap of motivations. 

What are your favorite things about Tiki? 
I like how loyal Tiki is – that she will stand up for and take care of people even when it’s frightening or difficult.


I’m a little in love with Rieker. Is he real?  
LOL, don’t we wish? That’s the fun of being a writer – you can create exactly what you want. But no, Rieker is not based on a real person.


Are you sure? 
LOL – You never know. I’ll let you know if I run into him in crowded railway station one day. J


What was the biggest challenge writing your novel? 
Actually, there wasn’t any great challenge. I wrote the story I wanted to read and it just fell out of my head onto the page.  I wrote THE FAERIE RING in 30 days.  Editorial revisions, however, took a bit longer. ;-}


How do you like your potato? 
Boiled, mushed with lots of butter


If you weren’t a writer, what would you be? 
I’ve been in business for many years.  Right now, I also work at a financial advisory firm.

Do you have a favorite literary character? 
I LOVED Eugenides in Megan Whalen Turner’s THE THIEF series. And of course, I love Harry Potter and the Weasley twins…

What do you do when you’re not writing? 
Clean the house, mow, walk the dog, grocery shop, cook dinner, laundry, haul the kid around….you know – the usual. But I also like to play the guitar, ski, play tennis, I paint occasionally and stuff like that.

What is one thing you would tell aspiring writers? 
Never, EVER give up.

What is your next book about and when is it coming out? 
Stay tuned!


Thank you again Kiki for stopping by! 

You can visit Kiki Hamilton here and follow her on twitter @kikihamilton

Posted December 19, 2011 by Kimberly in Book Reviews, Interviews / 19 Comments


Book Review: Succubus Revealed by Richelle Mead

Posted October 15, 2011 by Kimberly in Book Reviews, Contests / 2 Comments

Title: Succubus Revealed

Author: Richelle Mead

Publisher: Kensington

Publication Date: August 2011

Genre: Adult Romantic Fantasy

Series or Stand Alone: Series, Book Six, End of series

Check out my archive to see reviews of book one to five!


Synopsis can be found here.


Review:

Georgina has left her job at the bookstore to be… one of Santa’s elves? It was fun to see her out of her element, and really, she couldn’t have stayed at the bookstore after everything had happened. She’s given the job to transfer to Las Vegas, land of sin with her best friend, Bastien from book two and all of her dreams handed to her on a platter. So why does it feel so wrong? Seth is stationed in Seattle, helping with is ill sister in law and lovable family. But they can last long distance, right? And that’s not all…


 The last book in the series is bittersweet, fun and a little unnerving.  Anxious and waiting for months for the final installment to arrive in stores (or on kindle), I found myself hesitant to begin! Why? you ask oh kind reader. Well, it’s quite simple. I didn’t want it to end.
I enjoyed this series so much, I found it difficult to say goodbye to Seth, Georgina, Jerome, Carter, Hugh, Peter and the rest of the gang. It’s a book I was very much looking forward to reading! Oh, I’ll just wait until I have a full day where I can sit down and read. Therefore, I kept putting it off, putting it off… days go by…

As I was driving to work one morning, my audio book filling the car, my thoughts on coffee and bagels, I realized something.  I could die right now. I could. I’m healthy and young and don’t expect to, but you know, you never know. And as I’m driving, I thought- if I died, yes, usual sadness. Friends, family, etc. But…. I would NEVER know what happened to Seth and Georgina!

Well, that just won’t do!

I went home that night and started it. And feel totally satisfied that I did.

I won’t give anything away, but I did love the ending. All our usual suspects were there. There were answers to questions posed books earlier, and the storyline moved along quickly. Yes, I did guess how it would turn out after the last book (Catch up Georgina! Com’on! You’re smart! Think. About. It!), but that didn’t make it any less enjoyable to read. A few heart-wrenching scenes stick out for me- Seth and Georgina with Hugh, Carter and Georgina at the end.  
Mead was true to her ongoing themes through the series. Love is hard work and people make mistakes, but in the end, there can be redemption for all of us. Love is redemption. If you are strong. If you face your demons. If you fight on.  

Even for a succubus.



Rating 10 One of The Best




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Posted October 15, 2011 by Kimberly in Book Reviews, Contests / 2 Comments


Book Review: Succubus Shadows by Richelle Mead

Posted October 14, 2011 by Kimberly in Book Reviews, Contests / 0 Comments

Title: Succubus Shadows

Author: Richelle Mead

Publisher: Kensington

Publication Date: April 2010

Genre: Adult Fantasy

Series or Stand Alone: Series, Book Five

Check out my archive to see the reviews on books one to four!

Synopsis can be found here.

Review: 
Georgina probably wishes she had disappearing powers. Not to give too much away, but her personal life isn’t exactly working out. After the emotional rollercoaster that was book four, Georgina is settling into her life again and trying to deal with all the sad changes and adjustments the future will bring. While she’s more of herself than she was in the last book, she’s still suffering from a broken heart. And wary of the new succubus Simone who has entered the picture, and seems to be focused on… Seth?
But oh, she does in fact disappear. Georgina is kidnapped by unknown forces and trapped where no one can reach her. No one. No one?? Hmmmm…..
This book was very satisfying for me. Not only do all the storylines come to a climax, but mostly because of Georgina. Her past, deepest fears, desires are all shown back to her. The people she’s hurt, saved and who she was before Seattle are used as a form of torture for Georgina. We’ve all done things in our past we’ve regretted. Thanks to her captors, Georgina gets to relive them all. Her depth and character development really shined in this book and she became more human to me. I could relate to her, her mistakes and her sadness.  The horror of watching some of her memories and the present alter into her worst nightmare was unbearable at times.
This book also sets up the most important question in the series at the end of the book.
No, I’m not going to tell you. You’re just going to have to read it for yourself.
The usual gang is there. Jerome and Carter are, as always, awesome. All her friends rally to save her when she’s kidnapped and there’s such a form of unity between them, they reminded me again of my group of friends. 
And Seth is there too. For me, this is the book he redeems himself. Sure, we know all the reasoning behind the months of heartbreak, but this is the book Seth finally stands up for himself. And for what he wants and who he is.
One of my favorite books in the series, this one moves so fast and really pushes the plot forward. All the storylines get a bump and as Mead winds down the series, you can only hope the last book was going to be amazing. (More on that later…)
Rating 10 One of the Best

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Posted October 14, 2011 by Kimberly in Book Reviews, Contests / 0 Comments


Book Review: Succubus Heat by Richelle Mead

Posted October 13, 2011 by Kimberly in Book Reviews, Contests / 0 Comments

Title: Succubus Heat

Author: Richelle Mead

Publisher: Kensington

Publication Date: May 2009

Genre: Adult Fantasy

Series or Stand Alone: Series, Book Four

Succubus Blues (book one) review can be found here.
Succubus On Top (book two) review can be found here.
Succubus Dreams (book three) review can be found here.

Synopsis can be found here.



Review: 
Succubus on the road?

Georgina is sent to Vancouver to help stop a cult of Satanists. Wait, she was sent to stop them? Yes, you read that correctly! This cult just makes the real demons from hell look bad.
And if that wasn’t bad enough, the unthinkable happens.
Succubus no more?
Georgina loses her powers. While she doesn’t seem mortal, her shape shifting ability and all that other fun stuff, like sucking the life out of anyone she has a physical relationship with, disappears. Oh, and did I mention no one can find Jerome?  No demons. No friends. Not even Carter. !>
Becoming a little crazy, Georgina starts risking herself to find her boss and stop the cult, all without her usual powers. The stakes are raised.
Throw in some heartbreak in the form of a writer and a new boyfriend with questionable morals and you’ve got a bizarre love triangle.
This book deals a lot with the falling out from the last. Georgina isn’t her usual perky self, and her mood and depression definitely plays a large role in this installment. Dante is an interesting character too, especially how he’s played off in comparison to the Seth and the Georgina of the day.  He gave me the creeps through the entire story. And it’s very interesting to see how Georgina and her friends cope without their powers. 
For me, this is the darkest book in the series. Not only because of the changes I see in the characters, but also as a reflection on everything happened in book three. I don’t condone cheating, and it’s there aplenty in this series, and Georgina tries to find reasons to justify it.  But in the end, it’s just a mechanism to show how we hurt the ones we love most.   Don’t get me wrong- the sex is hot, the chemistry building for forbidden love.  At the same time, Seth and Georgina have gone to a darker place than I’d ever seen them, helpless and feeling out of control.  And that can only lead to one thing- more mistakes.
A well-written book, darker than the rest, and just a bit sad! Don’t skip over this one in the series. 


Rating 9 Ridiculously Awesome like Cookies and Ice Cream




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Posted October 13, 2011 by Kimberly in Book Reviews, Contests / 0 Comments


Book Review: Succubus Dreams by Richelle Mead

Posted October 12, 2011 by Kimberly in Book Reviews, Contests / 1 Comment

Title: Succubus Dreams

Author: Richelle Mead

Publisher: Kensington

Publication Date: October 2008

Genre: Adult Fantasy

Series or Stand Alone: Series, Book Three



Review of Succubus Blues (Book One) can be found here.

Review of Succubus On Top (Book Two) can be found here.


Synopsis can be found here

Review:  

Georgina Kincaid is one of a kind. Heart of gold bookstore manager first and succubus by trade; she juggles the new threat in her life with her cunning wit, her mind and her awesome attitude. And then the rug gets pulled out from under her.
See, Georgina’s having dreams, and not the good warm and fuzzy ones.  Each dream she wakes up and some of her energy is drained. Of course she’s confused- Isn’t that her job? The dialogue is spot on clever and her friends take center stage, amusing Georgina and the reader until I laughed out loud. These characters remind me of my own group of friends, quirky and fun banter. You know, minus the vampire, demon thing. And I can’t NOT mention Jerome and Carter. Every scene with them is fantastically written. No wonder many readers fall in love with Carter and out of love with Seth. Carter is amazing.
This balances the darker story nicely. There is a helluva lot going on in this novel, and that’s not a bad thing. Between Tawny, the new clueless succubus in town who needs some help and Georgina’s vulnerabilities being explored, the story is jam packed with character development and intrigue. Georgina is far from perfect, and readers will get a good sense of her morals and which ones she’s willing to bend. Or not.
The climax of this novel was very emotional for me. I won’t give anything away, but wow. That is some heavy, real heartbreaking emotion I felt towards the end. Mead is NOT afraid to make her characters unlikeable. And I had to read the last quarter of the book again, and again, to make sure I got it right. Did that really happen? Yes, yes it did. Be warned: you’re about to watch it happen in slow motion, right before your eyes. It’s an accident you can’t stop staring at.
Do yourself a favor and do not pick this one up without reading the previous books. The full impact may be lost and there was so much building up to this, you’ll feel cheated if you start in the middle.  Start with book one. Buy them all so you don’t have to wait till the bookstore opens tomorrow.  This is a solid addition to the series and you won’t be disappointed. It’s also very important because it sets up a lot of stuff that will become major, Major, did I say MAJOR plot development in the following books.


Go on. Get your copy.
I’ll wait. :)

Rating 9, Ridiculously Awesome like Cookies and Ice Cream

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Posted October 12, 2011 by Kimberly in Book Reviews, Contests / 1 Comment


Book Review: Succubus On Top by Richelle Mead

Posted October 11, 2011 by Kimberly in Book Reviews / 0 Comments

Title: Succubus On Top

Author: Richelle Mead

Publisher: Kensington

Publication Date: January 2008

Genre: Adult Fantasy


Series or Stand Alone: Series, Book Two

Succubus Blues (book one) review can be found here.
Synopsis can be found here.

Review:
At the end of the first book, perhaps you were thinking something similar to what I was-Wait, what happens next?
Do. Not. Fret! my fellow Georgina fans because hooray! Book two is already out! (and has been out for sometime) Sometimes, that’s the best part of discovering a series that has been out a while- No. Waiting! (I may not be patient. Just sayin’.)
We follow our dear succubus into another one of her conflicts. Her good friend from, like forever ago, and I do mean like forever, Bastien, an incubus, has shown up in Seattle and has an assignment from his bosses he must complete. Enter in Georgina, friend and all around softy who will help him seduce the stiff and cold Dana, using any means necessary. Bastien is not very interesting. He’s arrogant and this storyline wasn’t as engaging as I wanted it to be.
At the same time, something is going on with her friend Doug, whose new band has become the IT band. And while Georgina is happy with this new change, something just doesn’t seem quite right…
And of course there’s Seth. It’s hard being in love with a mortal when you’re a creature of hell. I’m not here to judge. That storyline takes on some interesting twists, not all of them positive for the couple. Mead does a wonderful job keeping her readers on her toes with the romance. All the characters roam freely in the gray area of love, life and fault. Did this push Georgina and Seth’s romance forward? I’ll say it did. There were bound to be issues with this potential couple, and book two tosses them out into the harsh light of day.
Looking back at the novel, it’s probably my least favorite in the series. I enjoyed it while I was reading it, but as the series went on, Mead’s stories became far more engaging. And her writing strengthened too. Book two is still a fun time and shouldn’t be cast aside, but if you’re not enthralled by the end of it, don’t worry. The following books make up for it. And book one was so much fun, I found it a hard one to follow.
And can I just make another note on the covers of these?
They are not my favorites and I feel like they may do an injustice to the series. In my head, Georgina does not look like this model. (The UK editions have some cool looking covers.) Ok. I’m done now.
Rating 7 Pretty Cool, Would Recommend


Posted October 11, 2011 by Kimberly in Book Reviews / 0 Comments


Book Review: Succubus Blues by Richelle Mead

Posted October 10, 2011 by Kimberly in Book Reviews / 6 Comments

Title: Succubus Blues

Author: Richelle Mead

Publisher: Kensington

Publication Date: March 2007


Genre: Adult Fantasy

Series or Stand Alone: Series, Book One


Synopsis can be found here.

Review:

Georgina Kincaid is just trying to make the best of things. Sure, you might think being a succubus is everything and a bag of chips. Men falling at your knees, healing lightening fast, being able to change appearances with just a thought. But really, she’s just any other young woman trying to get by. 

Working for Hell is not her ideal job, but Georgina’s choices were made a long time ago. She is haunted by actions from her past and it’s easy to think she could have been a moping wet rag of a character. But she’s not. It’s easy to like Georgina. She is strong, brave, smart and flawed. She longs for a deeper connection, a life that she gave up long ago. Of course, this is impossible in her current state as anyone she gets close to physically, she will suck their life out and darken their soul. Well, that kinda sucks.

The dialogue between the characters, especially her friends are hilarious. Jerome and Carter are excellent characters, representing evil and good, playing off each other like best friends who are supposed to be worst enemies. I love them both equally. Jerome for his sense of humor and John Cusak form, and Carter for his stoic advice and that he cannot lie. But doesn’t tell the whole truth either.

And there’s Seth. Dreamy, sweet, workaholic Seth who Georgina can’t help being attracted to. I don’t blame her. He’s boy next store meets creative artist. Yes, Georgina and I may have the same type. Of course, he’s mortal which adds another complication to her attraction to dear Seth. On the other hand, Roman isn’t shabby either. Sexy, suave and he’s really into Georgina. But this isn’t your typical love triangle. This book is about the demons of hell, so watch for some fun surprises.

This is a fantasy novel about a succubus, so don’t be all surprised that there’s sex. (And there is sex. Fun, hot, steamy sex with… oh, I can’t tell you!)

Mead’s writing is stellar. I’m a huge fan of her YA Vampire Academy series and I eagerly await reading her spin off YA series Bloodlines.

Well-rounded characters, witty dialogue and some serious chemistry make this one of my favorite series! Do yourself a favor- put aside some time to read this book. And have the next one on hand, cause you won’t want to stop!

Rating 10 One of the Best





Posted October 10, 2011 by Kimberly in Book Reviews / 6 Comments