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Monday, July 26, 2021

Book Review: Hard Boiled By T.L. Christianson

Hard Boiled
(Dragon Born Academy #3)
By T.L. Christianson

A hidden world, secrets, love, betrayal… and dragons.

Sydney Miller—Almost seventeen, unschooled world traveler until the you-know-what hit the fan. Reality? Gone... yanked out from under me like a cheap Ikea rug. Here are the doozies: Dragons exist in this whole other world! And bondmates exist. Yeah... I'm now bound to a heart-throb Prince to the Dragonborn—Ashe Carrick. Only, the gap is kind of thing for him.

I’d like to forget him, but when I end up at the Dragonborn base, Ashe is there! I’m trying to resist his gorgeous baby blues and focus on other more important things... like George! He’s the only one who has answers about my mom, her research and the dragon realm. According to him, she might be alive! So this is my new obsession and I won’t stop until I get to the bottom of it all!

*

Ashe Carrick—Twenty-three, lieutenant for the Dragonborn Guard and the Elibera's hope to become Prime Leader of the Dragonborn. I have a whole host of problems but I can’t stop thinking of Sydney, the girl I’m bonded to. I’ve done my best to keep her at arm’s length but she’s like a siren. One look from her heats my blood… rousing something ancient and primal within me.

Besides her, I have a whole host of other problems I'm dealing with at the Dragonborn base, Briony. The PL has gone entirely off the rails and when George Miller is brought into lockdown, he might have the evidence to bring PL Lambert down—if we can keep him alive.

*

Hard Boiled is written in dual point of view. Fall into this emotional continuation of the Dragon Born Academy!

The Dragon Born Academy Series:
1. Cracked Open
2. Over Easy
3. Hard Boiled
4. Frying Night
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Available At:
| Amazon | B&N | Kobo | iBooks |

Check Out The Other Books In This Series:
(Linked to my review)


My Review:

I have SO many bones to pick with almost all of the adults in this series. They are, for the most part, lying manipulating hypocritical scumbags who seem to take joy in keeping even the most basic information to themselves for *reasons*. It's been some time that I've been this frustrated with a series. The thing is that I actually like the world the author is slowly setting up and the main characters are interesting enough to read about. I would like this series a lot more if basic information was more freely given.

Being in Ashe's head was both a blessing and a curse. I loved how freely information was given to him. It helped the world building in this series tremendously! I also better understood where he was coming from with him making decisions for Syd where their relationship or lack thereof is concerned. I liked how he worried about her and wanted to protect her, even if it was from himself at times. The bad part? That it ended. I found myself enjoying being in his head way more than being in Syd's head. Because you guessed it, people actually informed him of happenings in the dragon born society and, get this, listened to him! Getting information from anyone in this series is like pulling teeth from Syd's perspective. Being in his head was a great reprieve from all that.

Syd finally started getting some answers by the end of this book and boy was I ecstatic for that! Finding out how much of a hypocrite these people are was a really calming experience for me. I like how even throughout all that has happened she still has a good backbone on her. She's a reasonable person if only the adults listened to her and acted accordingly. I've said it in the past and it bears repeating: Treat her like a child and she's going to act out like one. The revelation of her mother's past was really interesting! Though I resent that it took 3 books to get to it. She should have been told all of this from the beginning.

I wasn't expecting this story to go where it went in the end. Am I intrigued? Yes. Will this mean we get more answers? Hard maybe. Will I give the next book a chance? Probably. At this point I just want the adults (AKA one specific person that I can't name or else spoilers) to get what they deserve. Overall, as frustrating as this series has proven to be I'm still interested enough to put up with the next book to find out what happens next.

My Rating:


Sunday, July 25, 2021

Book Look #322: The Seeker's Facade By Isadora Brown

  Hiya My Little Predators!!

Hope you enjoy!! C:

***
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This Week:
The Seeker's Facade
By Isadora Brown


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Monday, July 19, 2021

Book Review: Over Easy By T.L. Christianson

Over Easy
(Dragon Born Academy #2)
By T.L. Christianson

A taboo romance... A destiny revealed... Secrets uncovered.

The school year continues, and I’m digging more and more into my family history. It’s been shrouded in darkness for too long. But the more I poke into my mother’s shadowed past, the more I wonder if history is repeating itself.

Along my way, I’ve found an unlikely ally in fellow Prime Logan Brooks. While my partially bonded mate, Ashe is away serving in the Dragonborn Militia, Logan is here for me. He’s helping me navigate my way, and telling me everything I want to hear from Ashe…

As feelings develop for both, but I know I can’t lead the other on. I thought I was meant to be with Ashe… but maybe I have a choice after all.

I’m solving this Dragonborn puzzle one piece at a time. I just need to hope that it isn’t tearing me apart as I do.

The Dragon Born Academy Series:

Cracked Open
Over Easy
Hard Boiled
Frying Night
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Available At:
| Amazon | B&N | Kobo | iBooks |

Check Out The Other Books In This Series:
(Linked to my review)


My Review:

*This review got a tad bit ranty and contains minor spoilers for this book.

I both love and hate this book so much. On one hand, the story is fascinating and well written (it's probably what's still keeping me reading). On the other hand, the heroine is left in a dark so dark that I don't even know which way is up anymore. It's frustrating when everyone in her life lies to her and makes decisions that affect her for her without talking to her about it. That's my biggest issue with this series so far. 

So once again, let's give it up for all the useless, lying, and manipulating adults in this novel! Woohoo! They went to new lying hights in this one, let me tell you! The only one who was somewhat more okay than the others was Evgeni (ok, ok he's actually my favorite character in this series so far!). He at least made his intentions clear from the start and told her to her face what he was willing to tell her and what was off-limits for now. I just hope I'm not wrong about him.

Unfortunately, I'm starting to dislike Ashe (the hero) as well. I understand where he's coming from and how weird he must feel about the bonding (which I wholeheartedly agree with him about) BUT why is he still making decisions for her without talking to her about it? These people expect her to just take it laying down? If you treat her like a kid she's going to act out like one. Could these two just sit down and have a heart to heart for once in their damned lives?

Logan still gives me the creeps. Sydney has made it abundantly clear that she's just open to being friends and he up and soared over that line so fast. It was disgusting and he had to get her drunk to do it too. It also seems like the Council™is trying to get Logan to Syd together, which is so disturbing. Why are all these grown adults so interested in a 16-year-olds 'intimate' life. Please grow up and leave her the heck alone, thanks. In conclusion, I humbly think that Logan should take a hike and maybe get lost in the woods and die of starvation. 

Sydney has had better days. I've lost count of the number of times she's been betrayed by this point. She gets no say in anything that happens to her. Everything that happens that affects her is told to her at the last possible moment and always catches her by surprise (and it's not for her lack of trying to get answers either). All the secret-keeping is doing is putting her in unnecessary danger because she doesn't even know the danger is there until it's right in front of her. At this point, nothing is her fault because she's just trying to keep her head above the lies and not drown in them. Her grandparents seem to be the worst of the bunch right along with Angeven. She should really let her dragon dig in the minds of these adults. Maybe then she'll get actual answers before things hit the fan.

As frustrating as this book is we did get some teeny tiny sprinkles of possible answers. I'm hoping it'll get better from here because I REALLY need answers and a lot more world-building. I have so many questions about the Dragon Born society and those answers would really help with making this world more realistic.

The ending sucked. The minor cliffhanger was understandable. What Ashe did and put on her was not. Again, I understand and sympathize with what he's going through but I dislike how he's going about it. Making decisions for Syd based on how you feel is not the right call here. I guess Book #3 will be seeing me after all.

My Rating:

Sunday, July 18, 2021

Book Look #321: Warrior Fae Trapped By K.F. Breene

  Hiya My Little Predators!!

Hope you enjoy!! C:

***
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This Week:
Warrior Fae Trapped
By K.F. Breene


For my previous Book Looks click here!
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Monday, July 12, 2021

Book Review: Cracked Open By T.L. Christianson

Cracked Open
(Dragon Born Academy #1)
By T.L. Christianson

Dragons, bonded mates, and irreversible decisions...

After a car accident left my only parent – my father in the hospital, I was swept away to the Dragon Born Academy by my estranged grandmother.

If I had to be there, I’d be an observer of this place with its rituals and superstitions… After all, everyone’s made it clear I don’t belong.

But then it happened…and Ashe Carrick – my impossibly irresistible bond-mate happened.

Being Cracked Open changed everything… Who I thought I was, WHAT I thought I was…

DRAGON BORN.

The words alone bring to mind monsters and princesses in castles.

I am the princess and the monster they locked away. However, my story has no damsels in distress, waiting to be rescued.

It’s self-rescue time, and I’m done playing nice.
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Available At:
| Amazon | Audible | B&N | Kobo | iBooks |

Check Out The Other Books In This Series:
(Linked to my review)


My Review:

Even though I enjoyed this book it was still beyond frustrating. The adults were complete nincompoops. The heroine was left the in dark until the end of the story (even at the end we still know barely anything for a fact). She was lied to and manipulated but expected to like where she was at and be meek and accepting about everything anyone did to her. They treat her like a child and get angry when she acts like one. Sheesh.

Now to the elephant in the room: The age gap. Normally I don't mind big age gaps, especially in paranormal romance novels. It's to be expected to a certain degree in the genre. This one bothered me though and it still continues to make me feel icky. It would have been so much better for the author to have aged up the main couple by 2 years each. Why not make it so that in the Dragonborn society she's considered a minor at 20 and can only bond at 25 or something. It would have been weird but understandable with a lot of world-building surrounding it. 

Ah! Something else that was severely lacking in this book: worldbuilding. I read a whole book and I barely know the ins and outs of how their society works. We were over halfway into the book before the dragon families were even explained in vague detail. Worldbuilding is key to making a novel believable. 

For the first time in my life, I actually wanted some info-dumps. I was that desperate. It lacked THAT much worldbuilding. I wanted to immerse myself in this world but there was only the barest sprinkle of information about it which made it impossible. 

One thing that really ground my nerves was all the slut-shaming directed at the heroine both from an adult and her peers. Let's get one thing straight: The heroine had NO choice where the mating was concerned. She was in the dark about everything including the possible consequences of the ritual they did on her. No one had any idea that a bonding could take place in those circumstances. The hero did his best to hold back but his dragon/magic/destiny was stronger. Neither of them CHOSE to be bonded. She isn't a homewrecker (as I've seen mentioned in other reviews). Being a homewrecker implies that she went out of her way to be in a relationship with a guy she knew was with someone else. That didn't happen. It was destiny, not a choice both parties took.

Another thing I disliked was how the hero liked to tell the heroine that she didn't seem/act like her age. It was actually disturbing and made me feel all kinds of wrong. Though I loved how sweet, caring, and understanding he was. I liked how he didn't push her into anything and put the brakes on when he felt it was getting to be too much. He was a stand-up guy working his way up the food chain in the Dragonborn society and his obligations weren't put aside just because the bond happened without their control.

I found myself agreeing with a lot of what the heroine was thinking and reasoning out for herself. I was very surprised by how much she used her brain and backbone for being only 16. The adults didn't want to deal with her asking questions and compromising on some key factors. Her runaway attempts were valid. Since no one around her was telling her even the basics of this world, she (within reason) was going to go back to the one constant in her life one way or another. I can't blame her for that. It felt like every adult in her life either wanted to bully her or wanted her complacent which is why they were so closed-lipped about everything. 

Even though there were a few plot holes that had me scratching my head I'm willing to give the next book a chance. I'm praying to the almighty book gods that there's more worldbuilding and less lying in the next book!

My Rating:


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