Book Review: Slither by Melody Steiner

Reviewer: AndreaSlither Melody Steiner

I received a copy of this novel in exchange for an honest review.

The summary:

Her revenge is better served cold-blooded.

Elanor of Onyx, enslaved by the dragons who scorched her kin and country, is determined to escape her island prison.

When the changeling dragon, Adom, demands that Elanor come with him to the mainland on a secret mission, she sees the opportunity she’s been waiting for—a chance to exact her revenge. But when his actions take a surprising twist, Elanor begins to suspect that maybe things are not as they seem.

With a plot brewing against the mainland king, alliances are tested and Elanor discovers a secret that will forever change the way she views the slithering dragons—and herself.

The Review:

I’m going to let my geek flag fly for a minute. I love dragons. Dragons are the coolest mythical creature in my opinion. I mean, they fly, they are practically impervious to injury, they have cool spikey things on their heads and backs, AND they breathe fire. Think a unicorn could stand up to that? If you love dragons, too, you must read this novel. You’ll get more dragons than you can keep up with and each with their own “abilities”!

The plot of Slither is complex and complicated. This isn’t a cheesy read. Elanor finds herself knee deep in a twisted mystery with plenty of deceit and secrets. Set against a land where ancient dragons coexist with humans, the novel is almost like an alternate history. The medieval world of Trana could easily be part of Great Britain. Though there are hints of romance, it’s not a romance, and it doesn’t have the full-immersion of high fantasy.

This novel would have been perfect for me if there had been more romance. I so wanted more of Adom or even the hunky King Siles, but Elanor’s feelings for Adom run from wanting to hurt him to hurting for him. I kept waiting for the sigh-worthy moment, but unfortunately, I didn’t get it. At times, I had difficulty keeping up with the secrets and who was playing who, but it all works out with a great surprise at the end.

4.5 Stars

#BookReview: The Second Chance Cafe in Carlton Square by Lilly Bartlett

the second chance cafeAbout the Book

Everyone expects great things from Emma Billings, but when her future gets derailed by an unexpected turn of events, she realizes that getting back on track means traveling in a different direction.

She finds it in the closed-down pub on Carlton Square. Summoning every ounce of ingenuity, and with the help of her friends and family, she opens the Second Chance Café. The charity training business is meant to keep vulnerable kids off the streets and (hopefully) away from the Metropolitan Police, and her new employees are full of ideas, enthusiasm … and trouble. They’ll need as much TLC as the customers they’re serving.

This ragtag group of chancers have to make a go of a business they know nothing about, and they do get some expert help from an Italian who’s in love with the espresso machine and a professional sandwich whisperer who reads auras, but not everyone is happy to see the café open. Their milk keeps disappearing and someone is canceling the cake orders, but it’s when someone commits bloomicide on all their window boxes that Emma realizes things are serious. Can the café survive when NIMBY neighbors and the rival café owner join forces to close them down? Or will Emma’s dreams fall as flat as the cakes they’re serving?

My Review

I was so excited to get a follow up from The Big Little Wedding in Carlton Square, because that book was a chick lit delight! I’m happy to report that I thought truly the same thing about The Second Chance Café in Carlton Square. It was a blast catching back up with Emma, now married and a mother of twins, and about to open her own café. There was the usual loveable drama, from Emma’s friends and mommy-group, her close-knit family, and her husband, but there was also the main drama of opening her café and the sabotage she has to deal with from a rival business woman. And I can’t forget the little crush from a customer that added a fun twist as well! I breezed easily through this and quite enjoyed it from beginning to end. I highly recommend both from Lilly Bartlett!

5 stars

#BookReview: Owning It by Leah Marie Brown

owningitSummary:

The chance of a lifetime . . . or just another bad decision?

Delaney Lavender Brooks needs to grow up. At least, according to her parents. After getting evicted from her apartment and wrecking her car, Laney is almost ready to trade in her paintbrushes and surrender to a more sensible 9-to-5 existence. Almost. Until she’s awarded an internship at a prestigious art gallery in Paris. What else can the free-spirited artist do but follow her dreams? Even if her latest attempt at chasing rainbows might cost her a real future . . .

Once in the city of lights, Laney is almost undone by the glaring truth: maybe she isn’t sophisticated or talented enough to make it as an artist—or an independent woman, for that matter. And when she’s hotly pursued by a seductive Frenchman, she has to wonder if she’s about to be a fool for love, too. Soon Laney’s greatest challenge is not proving herself to her parents, but having the courage to live the life—and love—of her dreams . . .

Review:

Owning It was a fast-paced chick lit read that had me smiling while imagining myself in Paris. I thought the beginning was such a funny way to start the book, and it captured my attention immediately. When Laney got to Paris I was still definitely engaged in the story, but I didn’t quite feel the connection between Laney and her romantic interest. I did enjoy meeting the secondary cast, especially Rigby, and the interesting scenarios Laney always managed to find her in.  I wish I would have felt more between Laney and Gabriel but still a fun read.

4 stars