Tag Archives: ya

SciFi Book Review: The Quest to the Uncharted Lands

The Quest to the Uncharted Lands by Jaleigh Johnson

Synopsis:
Stella Glass dreams of exploring worlds beyond her home of Solace, but when her famous parents are sent on a historic mission to the Uncharted Lands, it’s simply too dangerous for her to join them. By order of the king, she is left behind.

Missing out on the excitement is one thing, but Stella is devastated at the thought of her parents flying into the unknown. So she takes matters into her own hands. Instead of staying with family as planned, she steals away and—right before takeoff—sneaks aboard the airship.

But Stella isn’t the only stowaway.

In the cargo bay is a boy who is also desperate to get to the Uncharted Lands. And someone else who’s determined to keep the ship from making it there at all.

Review:
Stella is a brave and smart young woman with a penchant for alchemy. Not only does she not want to be left behind on this adventure, but she wants to make sure her parents make it there safely. But she’s not the only one keeping watch over the airship. Cyrus is a secretive and mysterious boy with special abilities that make him particularly adept at circumventing the saboteur on board.

The Quest to the Uncharted Lands is the third standalone novel in the World of Solace. Each story has an incredible cast of characters, and this is no exception. This fast-paced adventure was exciting and full of suspense. The incredible and unique worldbuilding leads to fantastic and exciting stories, blending magic and science. Steampunk fans of all ages will enjoy these novels. Each standalone novel includes new characters and stories. You don’t need to read in any particular order, but you will want to read them all.

Book Review: Stalking Jack the Ripper

Stalking Jack the Ripper by Kerri Maniscalco

Synopsis:
Seventeen-year-old Audrey Rose Wadsworth was born a lord’s daughter, with a life of wealth and privilege stretched out before her. But between the social teas and silk dress fittings, she leads a forbidden secret life.

Against her stern father’s wishes and society’s expectations, Audrey often slips away to her uncle’s laboratory to study the gruesome practice of forensic medicine. When her work on a string of savagely killed corpses drags Audrey into the investigation of a serial murderer, her search for answers brings her close to her own sheltered world.

Review:
Audrey is a brilliant young woman who’s brave and determined to ignore propriety and pursue her dream of studying forensics. But when she begins to investigate the victims of brutal murderer, Audrey begins to think she may know the killer.

Stalking Jack the Ripper is a gothic stand-alone thriller geared towards young adults. This dark mystery was gory and descriptive when it came to the Ripper’s victims. But Audrey is a believable young woman – curious yet sympathetic towards the victims. There are creepy, period photos that accompany each chapter. The infamous serial killer becomes a part of this whodunnit with a surprising and chilling climactic ending.

Fantasy Book Review: Dark Breaks Dawn

Dark Breaks the Dawn by Sara B Larson

Synopsis:
On her eighteenth birthday, Princess Evelayn of Eadrolan, the Light Kingdom, can finally access the full range of her magical powers. The light looks brighter, the air is sharper, and the energy she can draw when fighting feels almost limitless.

But while her mother, the queen, remains busy at the war front, in the Dark Kingdom of Dorjhalon, the corrupt king is plotting. King Bain wants control of both kingdoms, and his plan will fling Evelayn into the throne much sooner than she expected.

In order to defeat Bain and his sons, Evelayn will quickly have to come into her ability to shapeshift, and rely on the alluring Lord Tanvir. But not everyone is what they seem, and the balance between the Light and Dark comes at a steep price.

Review:
Princess Evelayn is just beginning to learn how to use her magic when tragedy strikes. And in order to save her kingdom, she is willing to strike a dangerous deal.

Dark Breaks the Dawn is the first in a YA fantasy duology. With plenty of drama, romance, and magic – this first installment builds an intriguing story. This tale is loosely based on Swan Lake – so loosely, that you wont see many similarities until the very end of the book. The author has created a unique fantasy world of light and dark magic that I’d like to see developed even further in the sequel. And the ending leaves off in a major cliffhanger that left me impatient for the next book.

Book Giveaway: Night Magic

Courtesy of Tor Teen, I have a copy of Night Magic by Jenna Black for one (1) lucky winner!

Contest is open to US residents only. No PO Boxes please. To enter, just fill out the form below. Contest ends June 16. I’ll draw a name on June 17, and notify winner via email.

ENTER DAILY TO INCREASE YOUR CHANCE OF WINNING!

Good luck!

Continue reading Book Giveaway: Night Magic

Box Review: Bam Box – April (Shipped in May) 2017

Bam Box

The Bam Box was founded in 2015 by Bloof, the same team of geeks, comic book lovers and pop culture collectors that started ComiconAuction.com. We love collecting. We love the thrill of it, the mystery of it and especially that feeling you get when you have a collectible in your hands that you are really excited about. So we set out to bring something different to everyone.

There are some great subscription boxes on the market, but we felt there was still something missing. We went to the drawing board with the goal of creating the box we would want to show up on our doorstep. After a lot of ideas and prototypes we arrived at the Bam Box. From the design of the box to the items inside to the instant winners we send out, we accomplished what we wanted to do: give you the subscription box we would be jealous of.”

Cost: 1 month plan starts at $24.99 plus $7.99 s/h

*SciFiChick.com received a box for review purposes.

Bam Box - April 2017

Instead of the mini mag this month, there was a sheet with the items in the box with all possible items subscribers could receive.
This month’s theme was “Revenge: Bad Blood.”

Bam Box - April/May 2017

Sgt. Kabukiman Pin – This is Bam Box’s first licensed pin. But I have no idea who it is and never heard of the film it’s from. But I don’t care about pins anyway.

Bam Box - April 2017

The Punisher Print – This is a signed print and licensed by Marvel. I really like this one.

Bam Box - April 2017

Sabertooth Photo signed by Actor Tyler Mane – As a huge fan of the first 3 X-Men movies, this was a nice surprise.

Bam Box - April 2017

Baba Yaga Bullet Bottle Opener – I didn’t remember what this was from until I read the description, but I love the John Wick films. So this was another fun item.

Summary:
This box was delayed a month because of some item held up in customs I believe. Unfortunately, though I liked all items but the pin, it seems like a really sparse box for the wait. Two prints, a bottle opener, and a filler pin didn’t even need a box. But the paper said that the June box will include a bonus item for April subscribers to make up for the long wait.

Next month’s theme is… Defend: Space Edition.

SciFi Book Review: Lois Lane: Triple Threat

Lois Lane: Triple Threat by Gwenda Bond

Synopsis:
For the first time, Lois Lane has almost everything she wants. Non-temporary home? Check. Dream job? Double check. Incredible BFFs? The absolute best. And now, her online crush, SmallvilleGuy, is coming to Metropolis. If all goes well, they ll turn their long-distance friendship into a some-kind-of-fairy-tale romance. But when does all ever go well? Before she can check boyfriend off her list, Lois must take down a mad scientist plus a trio of mutant teens, protect the elusive flying man from the feds (including her dad), and navigate her very first date with SmallvilleGuy. In the follow-up to FALLOUT and DOUBLE DOWN, Gwenda Bond’s reimagination of DC Comics s first leading lady takes on her toughest challenge yet: Love.

Review:
Lois Lane is an average teenage girl with a penchant for getting into trouble. She’s also incredibly brave, with a good heart. She has an online romance with a certain young man from Smallville. And her best friends are in the midst of an awkward love triangle. When some super-powered kids begin showing up around Lois and her friends, she’s convinced her nemesis is behind it.

Triple Threat is the third installment in this YA, scifi series. This latest adventure is paired nicely with Lois finally getting to meet SmallvilleGuy as well as another online individual. As her romance blossoms, so does the danger. And Lois is only willing to risk her own safety in search of the truth behind the mysterious kids with powers. I thoroughly enjoyed this latest novel. And I appreciate that the character’s relationships are involving – and that Lois finally gets to meet her online crush. Comic book fans will notice some changes to Superman lore, besides their early meeting. But the characters, especially Lois, feel true to their roots. The story follows her point of view, so it would be great to see some more character development from the other characters past just their romantic entanglements. And I look forward to more in this fun and exciting series.

SciFi Book Review: Star Wars: Guardians of the Whills

Star Wars: Guardians of the Whills by Greg Rucka

Synopsis:
On the desert world of Jedha, in the Holy City, friends Baze and Chirrut used to be Guardians of the hills, who looked after the Kyber Temple and the devoted pilgrims who worshiped there. Then the Empire came and took over the planet. The temple was destroyed and the people scattered. Now Baze and Chirrut do what they can to resist the Empire and protect the people of Jedha, but it never seems to be enough. Then a man named Saw Gerrera arrives, with a militia of his own and grand plans to take down the Empire. It seems like the perfect way for Baze and Chirrut to make a real difference and help the people of Jedha live better lives. But will it come at too great a cost?

Review:
Author Greg Rucka has written several backstories of characters from the recent Star Wars film. Baze and Chirrut are introduced in Rogue One: A Star Wars Story. And now we get a backstory focusing solely on these fascinating characters. This story begins with Baze and Chirrut already dealing with the Empire invading their world. When Saw asks for their help in rebelling against the Empire, the two friends must weigh their distrust of Saw versus the evil the Empire is causing.

This is a quick, fast-paced read for Star Wars fans of all ages. There is plenty of suspense, intrigue, and drama packed in this fun adventure. I only wish we could see even further back in these characters lives – such as when they first meet. Where this picks up, Baze and Chirrut are pretty much the same rough and jaded men they are in the film and have the same, brotherly camaraderie. I thoroughly enjoyed this exciting adventure, and hope to see much more of these fantastic characters.

SciFi Book Review: Star Wars: Rebel Rising

Star Wars: Rebel Rising by Beth Revis

Synopsis:
When Jyn Erso was five years old, her mother was murdered and her father taken from her to serve the Empire. But despite the loss of her parents she is not completely alone-Saw Gerrera, a man willing to go to any extremes necessary in order to resist Imperial tyranny, takes her in as his own, and gives her not only a home but all the abilities and resources she needs to become rebel herself.

Jyn dedicates herself to the cause-and the man. But fighting alongside Saw and his people brings with it danger and the question of just how far Jyn is willing to go as one of Saw’s soldiers. When she faces an unthinkable betrayal that shatters her world, Jyn will have to pull the pieces of herself back together and figure out what she truly believes in… and who she can really trust.

Review:
In the film Rogue One, there’s a big gap from when Jyn’s a child and rescued by Saw to when she’s rescued from the Imperial prison. Rebel Rising fills in those missing years.

Jyn is just a young girl when she goes to live with Saw. With Saw, she learns skills beneficial to subverting the Empire. And Saw trusts no one, especially with the truth of who Jyn’s father is. Through the years, Saw become more of an extremist. And after a horrifying massacre, Jyn flees a planet and finds herself alone for the first time. This coming-of-age story is action-packed yet heartfelt. There is plenty of adventure, intrigue, drama, and even a bit of romance. I thoroughly enjoyed Jyn’s story from beginning to end, when she chooses to join the rebellion in an inspiring finale.