WOW #13 The Morning Star by Robin Bridges

Waiting on Wednesday is hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine . Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly event meant to showcase the not-yet-released books that we are eagerly awaiting. This week I've chosen The Morning Star by Robin Bridges.

Katerina Alexandrovna, Duchess of Oldenburg, wants to be known as a doctor, not a necromancer. But Tsar Alexander III forbids women to attend medical school; his interest in Katerina extends only to her ability to raise the dead. Twice now, Katerina has helped him by using her power to thwart the forces of darkness—vampires bent on resurrecting the lich tsar Konstantin Pavlovich so that he can take what he sees as his rightful place on the throne. Katerina thought she had bound Konstantin to the Greylands, the realm of the dead, but he has found a way out. Now he is searching for the Morning Star, a sword that will allow him to command a legion of supernatural warriors.

Katerina must find the sword before Konstantin does—and she must travel to Egypt to do so. Along the way, she puts up with unwanted attention from her former fiancĂ©, the nefarious Prince Danilo, and struggles with her feelings for her true love, George Alexandrovich. But with the looming threat from Konstantin, Katerina's focus remains on the sword. Russia's fate will be determined by whoever wields the Morning Star—and delivers the final blow.

Release Date: August 27, 2013.

Review for the first in the series: here

This is the final installment in the Katerina Trilogy by Robin Bridges, and I am EXCITED. The first book was absolutely wonderful, the second book wasn't quite as good but still enjoyable, and this last one looks like it will finish off the series strongly!



My New Book Stack Part 1

So I guess this is sort of like a "In my Mail Box" or a "Stacking the Shelves" meme or a Book Haul, except it's not actually part of a specific meme and since these aren't my books, it can't really be a book haul either.

Today I went to the library and picked up a few books! Here's what I found.

Keeping the Castle by Patrice Kindl: It looked like a faster read and it looks really good! I'm looking forward to reading this one.
The Faerie Ring by Kiki HamiltonThis one was already on my to-read list, and since I've really been in the mood for fantasy lately I made sure to snatch this one fast!
The Friday Society by Adrienne Kress: I've seen reviews for this book before so I've always been curious. When I saw it on the shelf at the library I just had to borrow it!

I managed to limit myself to three books, but only for one reason. My library has been doing this thing where they fill brown paper bags with books, staple them shut, and label them with genre tag. Last time I was there they had bags that were 'Teen Boys' and 'Teen', but this time when I wanted to get one I got a 'Teen Girls' bag, rather than just 'Teen', which might partially explain why some of these books aren't quite the ones I would typically choose. But that's why I got a bag in the first place! I wanted to try books I might not normally read.

Hidden by Helen Frost: I'm still not sure what I think of this one, but I'll try it and see how it turns out.
Love, Inc by Yvonne Collins and Sandy Rideout: From the reviews on Goodreads, I don't have my hopes terribly high, but again, I'll try it, and maybe I'll love it!
The Secret Circle: The Divide Created by L.J. Smith, written by Aubrey Clark: I'm not sure if this is partway through a series? I'll have to figure that out. If you know if this book has to be read in a series, let me know! Figuring out where books fit in series is confusing :(
Take a Bow by Elizabeth Eulberg: Of all the books in the bag, this is the one I'm most excited for.
Rockoholic by C.J. Skuse: The cover may not be quite my taste, but don't judge a book by its cover, right?
Desires of the Dead by Kimberly Derting: I think this one is also part of a series, so I probably won't read this one. Instead, I might put the first book in the series on hold instead.

So that's my new book stack, library edition! Part 2 will come later, with books I actually own!



WOW #12 Taste Test by Kelly Fiore

Waiting on Wednesday is hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine . Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly event meant to showcase the not-yet-released books that we are eagerly awaiting. This week I've chosen Taste Test by Kelly Fiore.

If you can grill it, smoke it, or fry it, Nora Henderson knows all about it. She’s been basting baby back ribs and pulling pork at her father’s barbeque joint since she was tall enough to reach the counter. When she’s accepted to Taste Test, a reality-television teen cooking competition, Nora can’t wait to leave her humble hometown behind, even if it means saying good-bye to her dad and her best friend, Billy. Once she’s on set, run-ins with her high-society roommate and the maddeningly handsome—not to mention talented—son of a famous chef, Christian Van Lorten, mean Nora must work even harder to prove herself. But as mysterious accidents plague the kitchen arena, protecting her heart from one annoyingly charming fellow contestant in particular becomes the least of her concerns. Someone is conducting real-life eliminations, and if Nora doesn’t figure out who, she could be next to get chopped for good. 

With romance and intrigue as delectable as the winning recipes included in the story, this debut novel will be devoured by all.

Release Date: August 27, 2013

This debut book by Kelly Fiore sounds so cool! I can't say I've ever read a book about a cooking competition before. And that cover! So promising. Can't wait!



Persephone by Kaitlin Bevis

There are worse things than death, worse people too.

The “talk” was bad enough, but how many teens get told that they’re a goddess? When her mom tells her, Persephone is sure her mother has lost her mind. It isn’t until Boreas, the god of winter, tries to abduct her that she realizes her mother was telling the truth. Hades rescues her, and in order to safely bring Persephone to the Underworld he marks her as his bride. But Boreas will stop at nothing to get Persephone. Despite her growing feelings for Hades, Persephone wants to return to the living realm. Persephone must find a way to defeat Boreas and reclaim her life.

If you read YA, it's really only a matter of time before you end up reading a re-telling of some sort. Personally  I really enjoy a good re-telling, but after a while some of the stories get told too much and end up being basically the same book. This one, though, stood out as different to me. Obviously, as the title suggests, this book is about the myth of Persephone. (If you don't know the one, here is a place to read up on it. I like this one!) 

I started off thinking that this was probably going to be just another re-telling to add to the list, but a few things made it stick out. Most importantly was the portrayal of the gods and other people that originally appear in Greek mythology. All of the ones that had at least somewhat important roles in the story were unique characters. Hades, Cassandra and Charon were the characters that stood out the most to me as having personalities different than I have ever seen them written as before. Hade's personality was one of the things that made me really enjoy this book, to be honest. It was just so much different than any way I've ever encountered him before.

Also, Persephone herself was not one of those annoying main characters. She did NOT like being told what to do without explanation or sitting back and letting everyone else do things for her. She struggled through the whole book to make people listen to her opinions and not decide things for her.

The writing style in this book is fairly simplistic and straightforward, but for me it really fit the storyline and the characters. It made it so that I could sit down and read a good chunk at a time without getting mentally tired at having to think all the time, but I could also pick it up and read a page or two quickly when I had a few minutes spare and not have to re-read, just jump in. It was refreshing to read, although that could have something to do with me reading another book at the same time that was much, much darker. Along with being straightforward, I found the writing was also smooth and flowed well.

Here's a quote that stood out to me for some reason that I still can't figure out. I think that it captures how the Underworld is portrayed in lots of modern re-tellings, and especially how it is portrayed in Persephone.

"I couldn't believe I'd ever been intimidated by the Underworld. It was just like the living realm. Life went on, so to speak. People were still people, and they continued to do the things that made them happy."

The Good: The characters, the writing.
The Bad: Started off being similar to other re-tellings. 
The Verdict: 4/5. Definitely worth the read!
This book was supplied by the author in exchange for an honest review. Thank you, Kaitlin!


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