Retribution Rails

Secrets are like bullets. Ditto the dark, personal stuff. Folks say they’ll take’em off yer hands, share the burden, but really they just load ’em into their own weapons so they can use ’em against you later.

Title: Retribution Rails

Author: Erin Bowman

Series: Companion novel to Vengeance Road

Publication:  November 7th 2017 by HMH Books for Young Readers

Pages: 384

Source: Netgalley

Summary from Goodreads:

When Reece Murphy is forcibly dragged into the Rose Riders gang because of a mysterious gold coin in his possession, he vows to find the man who gave him the piece and turn him over to the gang in exchange for freedom. Never does he expect a lead to come from an aspiring female journalist. But when Reece’s path crosses with Charlotte Vaughn after a botched train robbery and she mentions a promising rumor about a gunslinger from Prescott, it becomes apparent that she will be his ticket to freedom—or a noose. As the two manipulate each other for their own ends, past secrets are unearthed, reviving a decade-old quest for revenge that may be impossible to settle.

In this thrilling companion to Vengeance Road, dangerous alliances are formed, old friends meet new enemies, and the West is wilder than ever.

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Pride and Prejudice and Mistletoe

See it is an assumption universally made that any beautiful, brilliant, single woman who is rich as hell will be in want of a husband.

Title: Pride and Prejudice and Mistletoe

Author: Melissa De La Cruz

Series: Standalone

Publication: October 17th 2017 by St. Martin’s Press

Pages: 240

Source: Publisher in exchange for a honest review

Summary from Goodreads:

Darcy Fitzwilliam is 29, beautiful, successful, and brilliant. She dates hedge funders and basketball stars and is never without her three cellphones—one for work, one for play, and one to throw at her assistant (just kidding). Darcy’s never fallen in love, never has time for anyone else’s drama, and never goes home for Christmas if she can help it. But when her mother falls ill, she comes home to Pemberley, Ohio, to spend the season with her dad and little brother.

Her parents throw their annual Christmas bash, where she meets one Luke Bennet, the smart, sardonic slacker son of their neighbor. Luke is 32 and has never left home. He’s a carpenter and makes beautiful furniture, and is content with his simple life. He comes from a family of five brothers, each one less ambitious than the other. When Darcy and Luke fall into bed after too many eggnogs, Darcy thinks it’s just another one night stand. But why can’t she stop thinking of Luke? What is it about him? And can she fall in love, or will her pride and his prejudice against big-city girls stand in their way?


Thoughts and Feelings:

I’m going to admit flat out that I am not the biggest fan of the original Pride and Prejudice to begin with. I think it’s silly when it’s praised as a beautiful romance, because it’s not – it’s a satire on Austen’s society cloaked within a romance because that was the only way she could get it published as a woman at the time. Mini rant aside, Pride and Prejudice is amazing as a satire – and I love it as such. Melissa De La Cruz has taken that satire and turned it into a satire of that romantic satire, and it’s great.

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Everything Must Go

It wasn’t that I needed his approval to exist. Even in this time of frissons and jittery stomachs, I knew my power without Elijah. I didn’t need him to kiss me. I just really wanted him to, and that wild desire made my body feel like it was on fire. Let’s be honest. I was in love, and it was the kind of love that made me forget myself.

Title: Everything Must Go

Author: Jenny Fran Davis

Series: Standalone

Publication: October 3rd 2017 by Wednesday Books

Pages: 416

Source: Publisher in exchange for a honest review

Summary from Goodreads:

Flora Goldwasser has fallen in love. She won’t admit it to anyone, but something about Elijah Huck has pulled her under. When he tells her about the hippie Quaker school he attended in the Hudson Valley called Quare Academy, where he’ll be teaching next year, Flora gives up her tony upper east side prep school for a life on a farm, hoping to woo him. A fish out of water, Flora stands out like a sore thumb in her vintage suits among the tattered tunics and ripped jeans of the rest of the student body. When Elijah doesn’t show up, Flora must make the most of the situation and will ultimately learn more about herself than she ever thought possible.

Told in a series of letters, emails, journal entries and various ephemera, Flora’s dramatic first year is laid out for all to see, embarrassing moments and all.


A Listical of Thoughts:

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Berserker

Title: Berserker

Author: Emmy Laybourne

Series: Berserker # 1

Publication: October 10th 2017 by Feiwel & Friends

Pages: 288

Source: Netgalley

Summary from Goodreads:

Are Hanne’s powers a gift from the old Norse gods, or a curse?

Her brother Stieg swears their powers are a gift from the old gods, but Hanne Hemstad knows she is truly cursed. It’s not Stieg’s fault that their father is dead, their mother has left, and their brother Knut has been accused of a crime he didn’t commit.

No, the fault lies with Hanne and her inability to control her murderous “gift”–she is a Berserker. When someone she loves is threatened, she flies into a killing state. The siblings must leave Norway for the American frontier or risk being brought to justice.

Aided by a young cowboy who agrees to be their guide, Hanne and her siblings use their powers to survive the perilous trail, where blizzards, wild animals, and vicious bounty hunters await.

Will they be able to reach their uncle, the one man Hanne believes may be able to teach her how to control her drive to kill? With Berserker, Emmy Laybourne, the author of Monument 14, presents her vision of an American west studded with Viking glory.


My Thoughts:

I had a hard time wrapping my head around Berserker. This is one of those books where I wanted to fall head-over-heels in love with it, but I ended up being so confused at points that it tore me out of the reading experience. I had a hard time coming to terms with the historical fiction meets fantasy because it was so… strange seeing them melded together in this way. Now, don’t get me wrong, I enjoyed the book – I just don’t think I got all that I needed to from it, and that’s sad.

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Taken by Storm

“I thought I might actually cry. That was so unlike me, I wasn’t sure how to respond. Bronwyn Alessia St. Vincent Clare didn’t get sad. She got mad. Or better, she got even.”’

Title: Taken by Storm

Author: Jennifer Lynn Barnes

Series: Raised by Wolves #3

Publication:  May 22nd 2012 by EgmontUSA

Pages: 314

Source: Purchased

Summary from Goodreads:

In the eye of a storm stands Bryn, the alpha of the Cedar Ridge werewolf pack. She is young. Female. Human. Physically weaker than any werewolf, she could never survive a battle with another alpha, the strongest, fiercest, and canniest of his pack.  
 
Yet she cannot refuse a summons from the werewolf Senate. A rogue werewolf is attacking humans. The risk of exposure threatens to destroy pack life, and the center of the crisis is Cedar Ridge territory—her own lands.
 
Bryn has no choice but to attend the meeting, a gathering of the most powerful werewolves on the continent.  The subject is the rogue wolf, but Bryn knows the other packs want what she has. Her territory. Her females. Her pack. 
 
They want her death. 
 
Werewolf law prevents the other alphas from making a direct attack. It also prevents her former alpha, the mysterious and powerful Callum, from coming to her aid. But it doesn’t prevent Bryn from knowing what she wants. To keep her lands. To protect her pack. 

To survive.


My Thoughts:

This is it. The series finale to end all series finales. I know Taken by Storm has some hate, and I totally get it -this is not a happy book. This is not a happy end, wrap it all up with a pretty romance bow. This book is brutal, it rips your guts out. Taken by Storm is the epitome of a bittersweet end. It hurts, but you learn to live with it. It is so fitting, so perfect, for the world Barnes created with these wolves. Ugh, I love this series so much.

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Trial By Fire

“Hierarchy was like breathing: the only time you thought about it was when something went wrong.”

Title: Trial By Fire

Author: Jennifer Lynn Barnes

Series: Raised by Wolves # 2

Publication: June 14th 2011 by EgmontUSA

Pages: 357

Source: Purchased

Summary from Goodreads:

Bryn is finally settling into her position as alpha of the Cedar Ridge Pack—or at least, her own version of what it means to be alpha when you’re a human leading a band of werewolves. Then she finds a teenage boy bleeding on her front porch. Before collapsing, he tells her his name is Lucas, he’s a Were, and Bryn’s protection is his only hope.

But Lucas isn’t part of Bryn’s pack, and she has no right to claim another alpha’s Were.  With threats—old and new—looming, and danger closing in from all sides, Bryn will have to accept what her guardian Callum knew all along. To be alpha, she will have to give in to her own animal instincts and become less human. And, she’s going to have to do it alone.

Bryn faces both the costs, and the rewards, of love and loyalty, in this thrilling sequel to Raised by Wolves.


A Gif List of Feels:

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Raised By Wolves

“Nobody knew what it was like to be torn between what it meant to be human and what it meant to be Pack better than me.” 

Title: Raised By Wolves

Author: Jennifer Lynn Barnes

Series: Raised By Wolves # 1

Publication: June 8th 2010 by EgmontUSA

Pages: 432

Source: Purchased

Summary from Goodreads:

Adopted by the Alpha of a werewolf pack after a rogue wolf brutally killed her parents right before her eyes, fifteen-year-old Bryn knows only pack life, and the rigid social hierarchy that controls it.  That doesn’t mean that she’s averse to breaking a rule or two.  

But when her curiosity gets the better of her and she discovers Chase, a new teen locked in a cage in her guardian’s basement, and witnesses him turn into a wolf before her eyes, the horrific memories of her parents’ murders return. Bryn becomes obsessed with getting her questions answered, and Chase is the only one who can provide the information she needs.

But in her drive to find the truth, will Bryn push too far beyond the constraints of the pack, forcing her to leave behind her friends, her family, and the identity that she’s shaped?


My Thoughts:

This is one of my favorite book series of all time. It’s not perfect, it’s not the best, but reading it is like coming home after a long, long time away. These books, Bryn’s story, is just so darn good. It pushes and pulls and takes from you until you’re not sure you’ve got anything left to give. It makes you scream and laugh and cry, really cry, because this series is the epitome of a bittersweet ending. I honestly don’t know why I reread these when I know what’s coming… oh wait, yeah I do, CAUSE THIS SERIES IS FREAKEN AMAZING!

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