Crash Into You by Katie McGarry Pawn by Amiee Carter Golden by Jessi Kirby Unravel Me by Tahereh Mafi Shift by Em Bailey

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Book Review: Archetype by M.D. Waters

Introducing a breathtakingly inventive futuristic suspense novel about one woman who rebels against everything she is told to believe.

Emma wakes in a hospital, with no memory of what came before. Her husband, Declan, a powerful, seductive man, provides her with new memories, but her dreams contradict his stories, showing her a past life she can’t believe possible: memories of war, of a camp where girls are trained to be wives, of love for another man. Something inside her tells her not to speak of this, but she does not know why. She only knows she is at war with herself.

Suppressing those dreams during daylight hours, Emma lets Declan mold her into a happily married woman and begins to fall in love with him. But the day Noah stands before her, the line between her reality and dreams shatters.

In a future where women are a rare commodity, Emma fights for freedom but is held captive by the love of two men—one her husband, the other her worst enemy. If only she could remember which is which. . . .

The first novel in a two-part series, Archetype heralds the arrival of a truly memorable character—and the talented author who created her.

My Review: 

   That was hella good! I was superbly impressed with this story, for I didn't expect it to be that good. But, it was and it exceeded my expectations and I am happy to say I loved this book. The closest book I can compare this book with is The Host, they are still completely different stories but I can see that those who enjoyed the Host can enjoy Archetype as well. Furthermore, the premise of this book was you'd call a thriller, I was hooked from page one.

   The plot, Phew! That is just another thing. I was honestly never bored, always at the edge of my seat, for the story was just packed with incidents, twists and turns. The story as a whole was just enjoyable and thrilling I would say. There were some scenes in this story that would just get my heart to squeeze a bit. I thought it was really good and full of incidents, an actual story. The author just did a fantastic job putting it all together. The author's writing was what you'd call sophisticated with a nice and wide range of vocabulary but still easy to follow. 

   The characters, I liked the characters, especially Emma and shockingly, Declan, I mean he was still a sweet-heart. I think the characters were well-written, not the best but good and they contributed a big part in making this story as good as it was.  I am also looking forward to knowing more of Noah in the sequel but I can say that I'll love him.

   As for the romantic aspect in this story, I would say that it is yet to blossom in the sequel. We could see snippets of a love story, I don't know what else to call it but it fitted the story and went well with the plot. And the ending was a brilliant, kinda complicated one and I didn't see it coming but I loved despite it being a cliffhanger but now, I just can't wait to read the next book. 

   I liked the idea behind the book, it was thoughtful in my opinion, it kinda reflects a couple of things we have in real world. And although part of the main idea was a bit too science-fictiony for me but I didn't mind it too much, it was still interesting and very well-executed. And what was even more twisty was that Emma fell in love with two but not in the sense that would come to one's mind, it wasn't as cheesy as I made it sound but you'll have to read the book to get what I am talking about, enough to say that it added to the story some heat. 

   Overall, this book guys was an amazing, heartfelt story with a main idea that we do not see very often. I was unexpectedly happy with what I found in this book, from the characters to the story to the writing, the author definitely did pull it off all together astoundingly. I had a fun time reading it. So if you are looking for a good fantasy/scientific fiction/dystopian novel with a bit of romance and an entertaining and intriguing storyline, then I'd say to definitely give this book a try.

Title: Archetype
Author: M.D. Waters
Series: Archetype #1
Source: Review Copy
Release Date: February 6th 2014 by Dutton Adult
Links: Goodreads | Amazon
Rating: 4/5

*Thanks to Dutton Books for providing me with a review e-copy*

Happy Reading!
xoxo, Mariam

Friday, January 24, 2014

Blog Tour: The Traitor's Wife by Allison Pataki

A historical A riveting historical novel about Peggy Shippen Arnold, the cunning wife of Benedict Arnold and mastermind behind America’s most infamous act of treason.

Everyone knows Benedict Arnold—the infamous Revolutionary War General who betrayed America and fled to the British as history’s most notorious turncoat. Many know Arnold’s co-conspirator, Major John André, who was apprehended with Arnold’s documents in his boots and hanged at the orders of General George Washington. But few know of the integral third character in the plot; a charming and cunning young woman, who not only contributed to the betrayal but orchestrated it.

Socialite Peggy Shippen is half Benedict Arnold’s age when she seduces the war hero during his stint as Military Commander of Philadelphia. Blinded by his young bride’s beauty and wit, Arnold does not realize that she harbors a secret: loyalty to the British. Nor does he know that she hides a past romance with the handsome British spy John André. Peggy watches as her husband, crippled from battle wounds and in debt from years of service to the colonies, grows ever more disillusioned with his hero, Washington, and the American cause. Together with her former lover and her disaffected husband, Peggy hatches the plot to deliver West Point to the British and, in exchange, win fame and fortune for herself and Arnold.

Told from the perspective of Peggy’s maid, whose faith in the new nation inspires her to intervene in her mistress’s affairs even when it could cost her everything, The Traitor’s Wife brings these infamous figures to life, illuminating the sordid details and the love triangle that nearly destroyed the American fight for freedom.

Guest Post:

How are Clara and Peggy similar? How are they different? Which one is the “main character” of The Traitor’s Wife?

I think Clara’s ongoing struggle throughout the course of the novel is to become the leading lady of her own life. As an employer Peggy Shippen Arnold is demanding, difficult, and she casts a very large shadow. Clara has to learn, ultimately, to stand up to this overbearing figure before she can take the reins of her own future.

 It was fun to explore the ways in which these two women, with their different resources and perspectives, would have navigated the events into which they were thrust. In some ways, Clara and Peggy are similar. They are the same age. They resemble one another physically. Look how easy it is for Clara to masquerade as Peggy’s sister once she has the right hairdo and the right dress. Both of their fates are inextricably tied to the fate of not only the Arnold family, but also the new country.

 And yet, they occupy completely different worlds. Clara begins the novel as a naïve, friendless servant who has never known anyone so sophisticated and worldly and charming. Clara has never worn fancy dresses, or entertained gentlemen suitors, or even slept in her own bed. That is why, at first, Clara is so enamored of Peggy Shippen. Clara’s new mistress is a popular, witty, fashionable force who has all of Philadelphia society at her feet, and Peggy not only wants Clara to work for her, but she seems to want Clara as a friend. Clara is, in her own way, just as seduced by Peggy as many of the other characters in the novel are. Given the social and economic disparities between the two of them, it’s clear why Clara becomes pretty much entirely dependent on Peggy.

 But just as Clara is reliant on her mistress, so too is Peggy dependent on Clara. She invites Clara out with her; she asks for Clara on her wedding day; she moves Clara with her to set up her new home. You see time and again that when Peggy is in a particularly tough spot, it’s Clara for whom she asks. But then, as Peggy’s luck worsens, it’s Clara who suffers. It’s the classic case of venting one’s anger on the person nearest, the person trusted so implicitly that one takes his or her presence entirely for granted. That’s why, even after everything devolves with the plot to turn over West Point, Peggy reacts so violently to the idea of Clara leaving her employ. She can’t fathom the possibility of Clara not always being there. 

Ultimately, I would say that Clara is the leading lady of The Traitor’s Wife, even though, at times throughout the story, she seems like little more than a pawn. A supporting character in Peggy and Benedict Arnold’s plots. But Clara does grow into herself by the end. She sees the life she wants – a life of independence, a life with Caleb, and a life far away from Peggy. Clara does what is necessary to achieve that life. But not without her biggest challenge yet – outsmarting the indomitable Peggy Shippen Arnold.


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About Allison Pataki

ALLISON PATAKI grew up in upstate New York, in the same neighborhood where Benedict and Peggy Arnold once lived. Allison attended Yale University, where she graduated Cum Laude with a Bachelor's Degree in English. While at Yale, Allison received Distinction in the Major from the English department and served as a campus reporter and news anchor for the student-run campus television program, YTV News.
The daughter of former New York State Governor George E. Pataki, Allison was inspired to write The Traitor’s Wife: A Novel of Benedict Arnold and the Plan to Betray America based on the rich Revolutionary War history of her hometown in New York State’s Hudson Highlands.
Allison spent several years writing for television and digital news outlets prior to transitioning to fiction. The Traitor’s Wife: A Novel of Benedict Arnold and the Plan to Betray America is Allison’s first novel.
Allison lives in Chicago with her husband.

Hope you guys enjoyed! And thank you Allison Pataki for writing us this fantastic guest post!
 And don't forget to enter the amazing GIVEAWAY for the chance of winning a Kindle Paperwhite (International) 

Happy Reading!

xoxo, Mariam

Sunday, January 5, 2014

Book Review: Out Of The Easy by Ruta Sepetys


It’s 1950, and as the French Quarter of New Orleans simmers with secrets, seventeen-year-old Josie Moraine is silently stirring a pot of her own. Known among locals as the daughter of a brothel prostitute, Josie wants more out of life than the Big Easy has to offer. 

She devises a plan get out, but a mysterious death in the Quarter leaves Josie tangled in an investigation that will challenge her allegiance to her mother, her conscience, and Willie Woodley, the brusque madam on Conti Street. Josie is caught between the dream of an elite college and a clandestine underworld. New Orleans lures her in her quest for truth, dangling temptation at every turn, and escalating to the ultimate test.

With characters as captivating as those in her internationally bestselling novel Between Shades of Gray, Ruta Sepetys skillfully creates a rich story of secrets, lies, and the haunting reminder that decisions can shape our destiny

My Review:

   I found the premise of this book had me curious from the very beginning. I mean come on, a house full of prostitutes?! And as much as I found the plot to be interesting and -intriguing- I also found it a bit too odd and also, I wasn't quite sure of the time setting of this story, not until I reread th synopsis actually that I knew it was a historical fiction novel, set in the 1950s which did fit because there was no mention of any modern inventions.

   Nonetheless, the plot itself was different in some aspects and I liked the diversity. The events and the path of this story was one that I personally couldn't predicted, I didn't actually have the will to think or predict how this book will end.

   Josie. That girl killed it. As the main character, the story follows this girl through this life of hers. A life that was full of bad people and that included both criminals and prostitutes - prostitutes yes, but there wasn't anything that was extremely inappropriate or offensive, just the reference of it - suffering, hope and also good people, she actually had good people in her life and that was what got her through all of it. I loved Josie, despite everything that I was aganist her or the other characters and I thought that she was well written. actually, all the characters were well-written and it all went very good together; the characters and the ploy.

   The writing style was good and easy to follow. However, the ending was different, happy kind of different after all the darkness. And I liked it! I liked that such a relatively 'sad' book if I could say, had this ending and not only that, but Josie ended up with a cute and gad3 boyfriend.

   Overall, I did like this book. The idea of the story is not one that'd read about everyday and the author managed to make it appropriate enough, if you overlook the fact that this book revolves around a girl who is deeply infuriated with prostitutes but she herself wasn't one. And despite the oddness of the story, it did make an enjoyable and different book to an extent. It was a story about finding love, hope, safety, peace and happiness. And to be honest though, I can definitely see a lot of people hating this book. So if you are looking for a bit of an unconventional realistic fiction novel then, I would say that this book might spark your interest.

Title: Out of the Easy
Author: Ruta Sepetys
Series: Stand-alone
Source: Owned
Published: February 12th 2013 by Philomel Books
Links: Goodreads | Amazon
Rating: 3/5

"The future belongs to those who believe in the beauty of their dreams" Eleanor Roosevelt
xoxo, Mariam

Wednesday, January 1, 2014

Book Review : The League of Skull and Bones by M.J. Fletcher

Jess Grimm has the ability to travel to any dimension in the multiverse. There’s only one problem... it’s killing her. 

Jess is a in a race against time to find a device that can slow the progression of the power inside her, but she isn’t alone. Others want her power, and they don’t care how they get, or if she is dead or alive when they do.

The only person willing to help her is the mysterious Ronan Sparrow a member of the League of Skull & Bones, one of the very groups that want her power. But what does Ronan want in return? Can Jess trust him or will she find herself alone with enemies on all sides?

My Review:

   Another series from the author of The Doorknob Society! However, this series is actually a spin-off of The Doorknob Society which to be honest I just hoped for another story, another world, mainly because MJ Fletcher has this really creative way with plots and I know that it wouldn't have been a disappointed. Nonetheless, the story was still good and thrilling but had some flaws here and there that kinda lessened my overall rating and enjoyment of the story.

   The plot was really fun to read and original, I liked how action-packed it all through the story, leaves you no space to get bored. However, I just keep picking up on similarities between this story and The Doorknob Society series which is, I have to say was my favorite. What I didn't like about this book was the fact that reading Jess's character, I found her personality to be somewhat similar to this of Chloe's which was such a disappointment. They were both the same kind of bad-ass female characters, at least to me. I just expected a new character - bad-ass yes but different - and although I loved Jess's character but it was close to reading another story with a similar main character. The romantic aspect was cute, still not fully clear so I can't wait to read the next book to find out but there were new characters, some whom were the mysterious type of guys and whatnot but I liked the characters. And I totally found the delimma that was facing Jess and endangering her life to be interesting.

   Overall, I still enjoyed the story and I am planning on reading the next book. And although I wasn't pulled into the story as much I hoped to, I went through the pages of this book like a maniac. Fast-paced, action-packed story with an original plot and an ending that was such a cliffhanger but it was also exciting and slightly unpredictable. And so again, for all of those who loves reading fantasy novels, I would say to give this book a try.

Title: The League of Skull & Bones
Author: M.J Fletcher 
Series: The Grimm Chronicles #1
Source: MJ Fletcher ( For Review )

Links: Goodreads Amazon
Rating: 3/5

'This book was provided by the author in exchange for an honest review'

Happy Reading!
xoxo, Mariam

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Book Review: Pawn by Amiee Carter

Pawn (The Blackcoat Rebellion, #1)Synopsis:

For Kitty Doe, it seems like an easy choice. She can either spend her life as a III in misery, looked down upon by the higher ranks and forced to leave the people she loves, or she can become a VII and join the most powerful family in the country.

If she says yes, Kitty will be Masked—surgically transformed into Lila Hart, the Prime Minister's niece, who died under mysterious circumstances. As a member of the Hart family, she will be famous. She will be adored. And for the first time, she will matter.

There's only one catch. She must also stop the rebellion that Lila secretly fostered, the same one that got her killed …and one Kitty believes in. Faced with threats, conspiracies and a life that's not her own, she must decide which path to choose—and learn how to become more than a pawn in a twisted game she's only beginning to understand.

My Review: 

   Wow! That was so much fun to read. It was surprisingly original as well, I mean, with all the dystopias out there you'd think that there would be a small possibility for a new original story but here we are, and Amiee Carter sure didn't disappoint! And I actually read this book in one day, possibly if I am right in about 3 hours in total - Hey! I had the time ;) But here is the thing, I hate starting a series which all of its books aren't all released yet. It's a hella torture and I don't fancy it. Nonetheless, here I am, agonizing over when will the sequel be out and how will the story go and blah blah. So it's not as fun, waiting that is and I reckon that a lot of you would agree.

   Onto the story! So it starts out fairly normal, you know, like we'd expect from a dystopia where people are suffering and under the mercy of the government and all that. People were ranked and the higher their rank was, the better life they'd get. But everything literally changes when Kitty agrees to this something. and that is when the story really starts. And I liked how we got a taste of both, being one of the higher ranks as well as being one of lower, suffering ones which the author did brilliantly! However, this ranking thing highly reminds me of The Selection which surprised me for some reason, actually its because I read the Selection after Pawn and found this idea in both although The Selection was out first, yeah so you get the point.

   The world-building was really good in a lot of aspects but we don't get as much as we need from it to get fully immersed in it and it was also the slightest bit odd. I am looking forward for more of everything in this story; the world-building, the love story - possibly a love triangle which I am excited to see how that will turn out to be and hoping it won't be a cheesy one - so yeah, everything. And although there wasn't really much of a cliffhanger, it ended peacefully to an extent and that I appreciated.

   The plot was intriguing. A bit twisted. A bit complicated. A bit bloody but without that much blood. It was thrilling to say the least. The sudden turn of events was not something that I expected. A lot of characters were there, I felt but I handled quite well keeping up so it wasn't confusing. All of the characters were well-written and I liked Kitty - although I despised the name - but unfortunately she didn't stand out enough as I wished she'd be, she was a normal heroine, one that I read hundred times before. She didn't have that much of a unique voice. However, there was this particularly this one character ( Kenox ) whom I felt we were a bit distant from. I wish we got more of him because he was a noteworthy character in the story and played a huge role but guess we won't get that until later, in the sequel. Perhaps some altering chapters between him and Kitty? Too much, maybe but we'll see.

   Overall, Pawn was a refreshing read for all those fellow dystopia lovers out there. As it was an enjoyable and thrilling read for all. It was a story about sacrifice, decisions, love, loyalty, and greed. A creative plot with heartfelt characters written exquisitely by Amiee Carter. So if dystopias were your cup of tea, the I'd whole-heartedly recommend this book for you!

Title: Pawn
Author: Amiee Carter
Series: The Blackcoat Rebellion #1
Source: NetGalley ( For Review )
Published: November 26th 2013 by Harlequin Teen
Links: Goodreads | Amazon
Rating: 4/5 

"Thanks to NetGalley and Harlequin Teen for providing me with an e-copy"

"The real voyage of discovery consists not in seeking new lands but seeing with new eyes" -- Marcel Proust
xoxo, Mariam

Friday, October 18, 2013

Book Review: Crash Into You by Katie McGarry

From acclaimed author Katie McGarry comes an explosive new tale of a good girl with a reckless streak, a street-smart guy with nothing to lose, and a romance forged in the fast lane

The girl with straight As, designer clothes and the perfect life-that's who people expect Rachel Young to be. So the private-school junior keeps secrets from her wealthy parents and overbearing brothers...and she's just added two more to the list. One involves racing strangers down dark country roads in her Mustang GT. The other? Seventeen-year-old Isaiah Walker-a guy she has no business even talking to. But when the foster kid with the tattoos and intense gray eyes comes to her rescue, she can't get him out of her mind.

Isaiah has secrets, too. About where he lives, and how he really feels about Rachel. The last thing he needs is to get tangled up with a rich girl who wants to slum it on the south side for kicks-no matter how angelic she might look.

But when their shared love of street racing puts both their lives in jeopardy, they have six weeks to come up with a way out. Six weeks to discover just how far they'll go to save each other.

My Review:

Again, this book didn't disappoint! In fact, Katie McGarry just continues to blow me away! When I first thought about Isaiah through the first two books, I only saw a werido who was trying to interfere between Ryan & Beth in Dare You Ton which might shallow and it was but it was because I never really gave him much thought. But I honestly would have never thought I would see this caring, loving, suffering and swoon-worthy version of Isaiah. I saw a man - not a 17 year old guy - who was trying to scrape his way through life to live a blissful one. I would have never thought he would fall in love.....

   But he did, and it was a spell-binding one, of course! The first half of the book was more thrilling I would say, simply because that's when Isaiah and Rachel first met and it was where it all started, and believe me when I say that their first encounter was an exciting and adventurous one, full of running and action and stuff. Whereas the rest of book, we watch Isaiah and Rachel try to make their happy ever after and it was like they went through hell and back, relatively of course. But hey! We did get a happy ending, tainted with a bit of  a sad incident but happy and peaceful nonetheless. But would you believe me when I say expected more of an exciting ending? No, I don't even know why myself but thought I'd state that anyway.

Isaiah was... Ahhhh! Just totally not what I expected and I mean it in a very very good way. He was just swoon-worthy, hot and manly and with Rachel they were just Wow! Katie just has her way with the male characters, she just creates the best and have me fanning over each and every one of them and the also the female characters, certainly. Just everything about this book was brilliantly thought and written. I found Rachel also to be a noteworthy character, that's definite but I loved her character despite how I disagreed to the way she acted when it came to all her family situation, I did see where she was coming from though. Anyway, in the end, they were both sweet together and they completed and complimented each other quite well.

But what fascinated me more was the details that were present in the book about cars and racing. But at the end of the book there was a Q&A section with Katie McGarry that laid it all out and it was fulfilling and it felt good to know that too so make sure when you get the book to read that part. And if you are not already familiar with Katie's writing style, then you'd see how much of a talented author she is and so there is no need to go there, honestly. Furthermore, it was written in an alternating point of view between Isaiah and Rachel like the two previous books.

And I Iiked the fact that each one of the three books could be read separately and that was just yet another awesome thing about this series! I mean, Noah and Echo had an appearance in the book and also Beth and Ryan but not knowing them won't affect your understanding of the story but of course knowing their story would just makes it a greater overall experience, tying it all together I guess. Although when I come to try and choose a favorite from the three books, that's when it gets real hard! But I would have to say Dare You To! (Tell me what is your favorite book out of the three books so far? I'd love to know so leave it in a comment down below)

And the best thing that came after finishing this story was finding a sneak-peak of Katie McGarry's next book! WOHO! Take Me On and it's going to be about West, Rachel's brother! And I am so looking forward to it :D However, I couldn't decide the rating of this book, I spent a good amount of time thinking about it but then I decided on a 4.5 and the reason why is because among other books this book definitely deserves a 5 but among the Katie McGarry's books, I think a 4 is fair so in the end, I decided on a 4.5 :)

   Overall, this book was brilliant and I enjoyed every single page of it. It had raw emotions jumping all over its pages. It showed us love and friendship on full display as well as hope, determination, loyalty, passion, suffering, pain and seizing the good moments. The love story in this book was heart-wrenching and alluring as we'd expect from Katie McGarry. The plot was witty, creative and just right. The characters were all off the hook, authentic and prepossessing in all possible ways. Katie McGarry just writes the perfect contemporary novels, so if you're looking for an intense and compelling contemporary novel then Crash Into You is the one for you.

Title: Crash Into You
Author: Katie McGarry
Series: Pushing the Limits #3
Source: NetGalley ( For Review )
Release Date: November 26 2013 by Harlequin Teen
Links: Goodreads | Amazon
Rating: 4.5/5

"Thanks to Harlequin Teen & NetGalley for providing me with an e-copy"

"The richest man is not he who has the most, but he who needs the least"
-- Unknown
xoxo, Mariam
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