Reviews

Review: The Determined Miss Rachel by Laura Rollins

Book Review

The Determined Miss Rachel by Laura Rollins
(Daughters of Courage #2)
Regency Romance

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Synopsis
She wants nothing more than to leave.
He wants nothing more than for her to stay.

Change may be the only constant in life, but for Rachel Chant change has only ever meant loss. First her father passed, then she was forced to leave her mother, and now she has even lost her home. Enough is enough and Rachel determines to find a way to be with her mother once again. She is no longer a little girl, dependent on those charged with her care, and she won’t stand by while her mother slips beyond reputable society and further into poverty.

Christopher Dunn has always lived among the comforts of high society, but never as a true member. The son of a musician and now a tutor, he has long since given up on having a home or family. Change and disruption are a way of life for him. He’s a man without roots, and he’s fine with that. That is, until he meets Rachel.

Steady in the face of uncertainty and with a love of music that runs as deep as his own, Rachel first captures Christopher’s interest and soon afterward his heart. However, Rachel’s determination to return home won’t let her rest. But to return home would be to leave Christopher. Life, it seems, is not yet done taking away those she loves, and this time it just might be more than either of them can endure.

As the second stand-alone novel in a new series by author Laura Rollins, The Determined Miss Rachel continues the Daughters of Courage series. This charming story is a light-hearted, clean and wholesome romance set in the Regency era (think: a clean Bridgerton). All books in this series have their own Happily-Ever-After and can be read apart or enjoyed in proper order.

What I thought
I received a copy of this book from the Author, for an honest review. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

Laura Rollins does not disappoint.  This is book 2 in the Daughters of Courage series.  These books are Proper Regency Romance books, which means they are clean romance books.  These books can be read as stand-alones or in order. Personally I suggest that you read them in order since they are a continued story just focused on different characters.  I loved book 1 in this series The Audacious Miss Eliza and really did not think that this book was going to top it. You can find my review here if you are interested.

To be honest I liked the character of Rachel in the first book, however, I was not sure how I was going to feel about a whole book dedicated to her.  Well I will be surprised if any of the other books in this series tops this one for me.  Rachel is focused on one thing and one thing only, finding out if her mother is okay.  Rachel’s uncle keeps telling her that her mother is fine and that she should be focusing on her season, however, that is the last thing that Rachel wants to do.  

I really liked how early on in the story Fitzwilliam and Rachel discover that they do not “fit” well and decide to become friends even though they know that the goal of their families is for them to become a match.  The ending and what Fitzwilliam does is just perfect.  I really want to know more about him in the future.  

Christopher is such a loveable person and whether titled or not I wanted the absolute best for him.  He and Rachel were just perfect for each other and I think that everyone could see that.  I want to gush so much, however I don’t want to spoil the story for anyone.  There are so many cute scenes.  

When it comes to happily-ever-afters this has got to be one of my favorite endings.  All loose ends (some that you may not have even realized) were all tied up perfectly.  I really can not wait for the third book to come out in October!

My Rating: /5

Have you read this book? If so what did you think? Tell me in the comments below.

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Hauls

Book Haul: June 2021

Book Haul

Good Morning.

Welcome to my June book haul. I obtained 14 books in June 12 of them were physical books and 2 were eBooks. So far I have read 6 of these books, I am really happy that I have read half of what I added. In case you missed it I am trying to get my TBR down to a more manageable number. I did a post regarding all of the books on my TBR as of July 1, 2021 at that time I had my physical TBR down to 91, that includes all of these books too. I am keeping that list updated regarding what is still on my shelves unread. I am keeping a updated number of how many is left at the end of the list just incase anyone wants to know.

Below I have the books broken down into two categories physical and eBooks. I obtained these books in a combination of purchases, gifts, free downloads, and from authors. A couple of these I purchased a while ago and they just took some time getting to me. I think I might just have my purchasing under control again. I am a stress buyer and I had some very stressful months recently. I am also trying to be really picky about what I am adding to my TBR right now and that is helping too.

Physical Books

Half Sick of Shadows by Laura Sebastian | Fantasy, Retelling | Add to Goodreads

The Lady of Shalott reclaims her story in this bold feminist reimagining of the Arthurian myth from the New York Times bestselling author of Ash Princess.

Everyone knows the legend. Of Arthur, destined to be a king. Of the beautiful Guinevere, who will betray him with his most loyal knight, Lancelot. Of the bitter sorceress, Morgana, who will turn against them all. But Elaine alone carries the burden of knowing what is to come–for Elaine of Shalott is cursed to see the future.

On the mystical isle of Avalon, Elaine runs free and learns of the ancient prophecies surrounding her and her friends–countless possibilities, almost all of them tragic.

When their future comes to claim them, Elaine, Guinevere, Lancelot, and Morgana accompany Arthur to take his throne in stifling Camelot, where magic is outlawed, the rules of society chain them, and enemies are everywhere. Yet the most dangerous threats may come from within their own circle.

As visions are fulfilled and an inevitable fate closes in, Elaine must decide how far she will go to change fate–and what she is willing to sacrifice along the way. 


Clockwork Planet, Vol. 2 by Yuu Kamiya, Tsubaki Himana, and Kuro | (Clockwork Planet Manga #2) | Manga, Steampunk | Add to Goodreads

GEARS IN MOTION

Naoto and RyuZU have a tense encounter with Marie Bell Breguet and her bodyguard, Vainney Halter, but the four strike up a shaky alliance in order to fix the Core Tower in Kyoto. With the city’s most important structure in disrepair, Kyoto’s entire population is at risk, but Naoto believes he can save it before the city undergoes a Purge. This unstoppable team of renegades may be able to save millions of lives, but acting against government orders could spark a dangerous conflict. Is Naoto’s group ready to face the consequences of disrupting the order of the world itself?


The Nature of a Lady by Roseanna M. White | (The Secrets of the Isles #1) | Historical Fiction | Add to Goodreads

1906
Lady Elizabeth “Libby” Sinclair, with her love of microscopes and nature, isn’t favored in society. She flees to the beautiful Isles of Scilly for the summer and stumbles into the dangerous secrets left behind by her holiday cottage’s former occupant, also named Elizabeth, who mysteriously vanished.

Oliver Tremayne–gentleman and clergyman–is determined to discover what happened to his sister, and he’s happy to accept the help of the girl now living in what should have been Beth’s summer cottage . . . especially when he realizes it’s the curious young lady he met briefly two years ago, who shares his love of botany and biology. But the hunt for his sister involves far more than nature walks, and he can’t quite believe all the secrets Beth had been keeping from him.

As Libby and Oliver work together, they find ancient legends, pirate wrecks, betrayal, and the most mysterious phenomenon of all: love.


There’s No Place Like Holmes by Roseanna White | (Secrets of Wayfarers Inn #20) | Sherlockian, Mystery | Add to Goodreads

Sherlock Holmes has come to Marietta…or at least, his fan club. Tess Wallace and her friends are excited to welcome Tess’s uncle Harold to the inn with his Sherlock Society, and they expect a weekend of deerstalker hats, violin music, and rousing debate regarding the Sherlock Holmes mysteries. But when a new donation to the Underground Railroad Museum goes missing en route to the inn, Tess, LuAnn, and Janice find themselves with a whole club-full of amateur detectives ready to help them solve the case. As the Inn Crowd and their guests investigate, it soon becomes apparent that all the clues they gather seem to be from one of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s stories! How is it possible that this classic book, written decades ago, is leading them on a hunt all around Marietta today?

An unexpected snowstorm foils some of Tess’s plans for a miniature family reunion; and she realizes that Uncle Harold may not be as sharp as he once had been. He has dedicated his life to pursuits she can’t quite understand…but at the heart of it all, are they more alike than different?


Nightblade’s Vengeance by Ryan Kirk | (Blades of the Fallen #1) | Fantasy | Add to Goodreads

In a thrilling fantasy series from the author of the Nightblade novels, revenge becomes a quest for a young female warrior.

In a feudal land, a Kingdom is at risk. With no heir to the fragile throne, its future rests with the powerful members of the dying king’s Council, including Minori, a nightblade warrior, and Kiyoshi, a dayblade healer. The two men are bound by the sword but divided by two opposing principles: rule the land, or serve it. In their challenge for supremacy, a spark has been lit.

Her name is Asa. Her creed is revenge.

A fierce nightblade warrior, she’s spent a decade in pursuit of the enigmatic general who killed her father in a violent revolt—then mysteriously vanished from all records. Now, her desire for reckoning has led her to the village of Two Falls—and straight into the heart of an impending civil war. Minori and Kiyoshi are vying for her loyalty. And Asa must choose sides.

As fresh betrayals unfold and a new uprising looms, Asa knows that chasing a ghost is no longer just a personal quest for retribution. It’s going to alter the fate of the entire Kingdom.


The Tangleroot Palace: Stories by Marjorie M. Liu | Fantasy, Short Stories | Add to Goodreads

New York Times bestseller and Hugo, British Fantasy, Romantic Times, and Eisner award-winning author of the graphic novel, Monstress, Marjorie Liu leads you deep into the heart of the tangled woods. In her long-awaited debut story collection, dark, lush, and spellbinding short fiction you will find unexpected detours, dangerous magic, and even more dangerous women.

Briar, bodyguard for a body-stealing sorceress, discovers her love for Rose, whose true soul emerges only once a week. An apprentice witch seeks her freedom through betrayal, the bones of the innocent, and a meticulously-plotted spell. In a world powered by crystal skulls, a warrior returns to save China from invasion by her jealous ex. A princess runs away from an arranged marriage, finding family in a strange troupe of traveling actors at the border of the kingdom’s deep, dark woods.

Concluding with a gorgeous full-length novella, Marjorie Liu’s first short fiction collection is an unflinching sojourn into her thorny tales of love, revenge, and new beginnings.


A Master of Djinn by P. Djèlí Clark | (Dead Djinn Universe #1) | Historical Fantasy, Steampunk | Add to Goodreads

Nebula, Locus, and Alex Award-winner P. Djèlí Clark returns to his popular alternate Cairo universe for his fantasy novel debut, A Master of Djinn

Cairo, 1912: Though Fatma el-Sha’arawi is the youngest woman working for the Ministry of Alchemy, Enchantments and Supernatural Entities, she’s certainly not a rookie, especially after preventing the destruction of the universe last summer.

So when someone murders a secret brotherhood dedicated to one of the most famous men in history, al-Jahiz, Agent Fatma is called onto the case. Al-Jahiz transformed the world 50 years ago when he opened up the veil between the magical and mundane realms, before vanishing into the unknown. This murderer claims to be al-Jahiz, returned to condemn the modern age for its social oppressions. His dangerous magical abilities instigate unrest in the streets of Cairo that threaten to spill over onto the global stage.

Alongside her Ministry colleagues and her clever girlfriend Siti, Agent Fatma must unravel the mystery behind this imposter to restore peace to the city – or face the possibility he could be exactly who he seems….


The Tale of Murasaki by Liza Dalby | Historical | Add to Goodreads

The Tale of Murasaki is an elegant and brilliantly authentic historical novel by the author of Geisha and the only Westerner ever to have become a geisha.

In the eleventh century Murasaki Shikibu wrote the world’s first novel, The Tale of Genji, the most popular work in the history of Japanese literature. In The Tale of MurasakiLiza Dalby has created a breathtaking fictionalized narrative of the life of this timeless poet–a lonely girl who becomes such a compelling storyteller that she is invited to regale the empress with her tales. The Tale of Murasakiis the story of an enchanting time and an exotic place. Whether writing about mystical rice fields in the rainy mountains or the politics and intrigue of the royal court, Dalby breathes astonishing life into ancient Japan. 


The Jasmine Throne by Tasha Suri | (Burning Kingdoms #1) | Fantasy | Add to Goodreads

Author of Empire of Sand and Realm of Ash Tasha Suri’s The Jasmine Throne, beginning a new trilogy set in a world inspired by the history and epics of India, in which a captive princess and a maidservant in possession of forbidden magic become unlikely allies on a dark journey to save their empire from the princess’s traitor brother.

Imprisoned by her dictator brother, Malini spends her days in isolation in the Hirana: an ancient temple that was once the source of the powerful, magical deathless waters — but is now little more than a decaying ruin.

Priya is a maidservant, one among several who make the treacherous journey to the top of the Hirana every night to clean Malini’s chambers. She is happy to be an anonymous drudge, so long as it keeps anyone from guessing the dangerous secret she hides.

But when Malini accidentally bears witness to Priya’s true nature, their destinies become irrevocably tangled. One is a vengeful princess seeking to depose her brother from his throne. The other is a priestess seeking to find her family. Together, they will change the fate of an empire.


Japanese Myths by Jake Jackson | Myths | Add to Goodreads

Japan’s mythology is alive with gods, spirits and monsters. It draws on Buddhist and Shinto traditions to explain the nature of the world of the island of Japan, and the heavenly status of the long line of emperors. The warrior class of the imperial court, and the natural spirits of the countryside represent parallel and interdependent aspects of Japanese society, explored through ancient legend and folklore in this fascinating new book in the Flame Tree Myths and Legend series.


The Brass Queen by Elizabeth Chatsworth | Fantasy, Historical, Steampunk | Add to Goodreads

In 1897, a fiery British aristocrat and an inept US spy search for a stolen invisibility serum that could spark a global war.

Miss Constance Haltwhistle is the last in a line of blue-blooded rogue inventors. Selling exotic firearms under her alias, the ‘Brass Queen,’ has kept her baronial estate’s coffers full. But when US spy, Trusdale, saves her from assassins, she’s pulled into a search for a scientist with an invisibility serum. As royal foes create an invisible army to start a global war, Constance and Trusdale must learn to trust each other. If they don’t, the world they know will literally disappear before their eyes.


The Councillor by E.J. Beaton | (The Councillor #1) | Fantasy | Add to Goodreads

This Machiavellian fantasy follows a scholar’s quest to choose the next ruler of her kingdom amidst lies, conspiracy, and assassination.

When the death of Iron Queen Sarelin Brey fractures the realm of Elira, Lysande Prior, the palace scholar and the queen’s closest friend, is appointed Councillor. Publically, Lysande must choose the next monarch from amongst the city-rulers vying for the throne. Privately, she seeks to discover which ruler murdered the queen, suspecting the use of magic.

Resourceful, analytical, and quiet, Lysande appears to embody the motto she was raised with: everything in its place. Yet while she hides her drug addiction from her new associates, she cannot hide her growing interest in power. She becomes locked in a game of strategy with the city-rulers – especially the erudite prince Luca Fontaine, who seems to shift between ally and rival.

Further from home, an old enemy is stirring: the magic-wielding White Queen is on the move again, and her alliance with a traitor among the royal milieu poses a danger not just to the peace of the realm, but to the survival of everything that Lysande cares about.

In a world where the low-born keep their heads down, Lysande must learn to fight an enemy who wears many guises… even as she wages her own battle between ambition and restraint. 


E-Books

Song of the Forever Rains by E.J. Mellow | (Mousai #1) | Fantasy | Add to Goodreads

The Thief Kingdom is a place hidden within the world of Aadlior. Many whisper of its existence, but few have found this place, where magic and pleasure abound. There, the mysterious Thief King reigns supreme with the help of the Mousai, a trio of revered and feared sorceresses.

Larkyra Bassette may be the youngest of the Mousai, but when she sings her voice has the power to slay monsters. When it’s discovered the Duke of Lachlan is siphoning a poisonous drug from the Thief Kingdom and using it to abuse his tenants, Larkyra is offered her first solo mission to stop the duke. Eager to prove herself, Larkyra accepts by posing as the duke’s potential bride. But her plans grow complicated when she finds herself drawn to Lord Darius Mekenna, Lachlan’s rightful heir. Soon she suspects Darius has his own motivations for ridding Lachlan of the corrupt duke. Larkyra and Darius must learn to trust each other if there is to be any hope of saving the people of Lachlan—and themselves.

Welcome to the world of Aadilor, where lords and ladies can be murderers and thieves, and the most alluring notes are often the deadliest. Dare to listen? 


The Determined Miss Rachel by Laura Rollins | (Daughters of Courage #2) | Regency Romance, Clean Romance | Add to Goodreads

She wants nothing more than to leave.
He wants nothing more than for her to stay.

Change may be the only constant in life, but for Rachel Chant change has only ever meant loss. First her father passed, then she was forced to leave her mother, and now she has even lost her home. Enough is enough and Rachel determines to find a way to be with her mother once again. She is no longer a little girl, dependent on those charged with her care, and she won’t stand by while her mother slips beyond reputable society and further into poverty.

Christopher Dunn has always lived among the comforts of high society, but never as a true member. The son of a musician and now a tutor, he has long since given up on having a home or family. Change and disruption are a way of life for him. He’s a man without roots, and he’s fine with that. That is, until he meets Rachel.

Steady in the face of uncertainty and with a love of music that runs as deep as his own, Rachel first captures Christopher’s interest and soon afterward his heart. However, Rachel’s determination to return home won’t let her rest. But to return home would be to leave Christopher. Life, it seems, is not yet done taking away those she loves, and this time it just might be more than either of them can endure.

As the second stand-alone novel in a new series by author Laura Rollins, The Determined Miss Rachel continues the Daughters of Courage series. This charming story is a light-hearted, clean and wholesome romance set in the Regency era (think: a clean Bridgerton). All books in this series have their own Happily-Ever-After and can be read apart or enjoyed in proper order.


How many books did you add to your TBR this month?

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Wrap Up

June 2021 Wrap-up

Monthly Wrapup

Hello you wonderful people.

Welcome to my June wrap-up.  It looks like I had a better reading month than I thought. I finished 16 books and DNF’d 4, so not too bad. I did find a new favorite book for this year, The Jasmine Throne by Tasha Suri, I can not wait to see what happens next in this series. I was also able to I finish 2 series this month, which makes me feel a little bit better starting 4 other series.

5 Star Reads

Diana: Her True Story–in Her Own Words by Andrew Morton | Biography | Add to Goodreads

Shadows of Self by Brandon Sanderson | Mistborn Saga – The Wax & Wayne Series #1 | Steampunk, Fantasy, Flintlock Fantasy | Add to Goodreads

The Jasmine Throne by Tasha Suri | (Burning Kingdoms #1) | Fantasy | Add to Goodreads

Shadow Knights by Jennifer Anne Davis | (Knights of the Realm #2) | Young Adult, Fantasy | Add to Goodreads

Hidden Knights by Jennifer Anne Davis | (Knights of the Realm #2) | Young Adult, Fantasy | Add to Goodreads

The Bands of Mourning by Brandon Sanderson | Mistborn Saga – The Wax & Wayne Series #1 | Steampunk, Fantasy, Flintlock Fantasy | Add to Goodreads

The Determined Miss Rachel by Laura Rollins | (Daughters of Courage #2) | Regency Romance, Clean Romance | Add to Goodreads

Ashes of the Sun by Django Wexler | (Burningblade & Silvereye #1) | Fantasy | Add to Goodreads

Clockwork Planet, Vol. 2 by Yuu Kamiya | (Clockwork Planet Manga #2) | Manga, Steampunk, Fantasy | Add to Goodreads

Prince of Secrets and Shadows by C.S. Johnson | (The Order of the Crystal Daggers #2) | Young Adult, Historical Fiction, Adventure, Romance | Add to Goodreads


4 Star Reads

In Solitude’s Shadow by David Green | Empire of Ruin | Dark Fantasy | Add to Goodreads

The Sumage Solution by G. L. Carriger | (San Andreas Shifters #1) | Fantasy, Romance, Paranormal | Add to Goodreads

Rise of the Huntress by Joseph Delaney | (The Last Apprentice #7) | Young Adult, Fantasy, Paranormal | Add to Goodreads

A Dead Djinn in Cairo by P. Djèlí Clark | (Dead Djinn Universe #0.5) | Fantasy, Steampunk, Mystery | Add to Goodreads


3 Star Reads

The Blacktongue Thief by Christopher Buehlman | (Blacktongue #1) | Fantasy | Add to Goodreads


2 Star Reads

Sorcery of Thorns by Margaret Rogerson | Young Adult, Fantasy | Add to Goodreads


DNF

Katherine of Aragon, the True Queen by Alison Weir | (Six Tudor Queens #1) | Historical Fiction | Add to Goodreads

Ink & Sigil by Kevin Hearne | (Ink & Sigil #1) | Fantasy | Add to Goodreads

The Light of the Midnight Stars by Rena Rossner | Historical Fantasy | Add to Goodreads

A Deal with the Elf King by Elise Kova | (Married to Magic #1) | Fantasy, Romance | Add to Goodreads


How was your reading month? Take to me below I would love to hear from you!

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TBR

June Update: 20 Books of Summer 2021 #20booksofsummer21

I thought that I would give updates for this challenge. Just in case you didn’t see my previous post you can find my 20 Books of Summer 2021 list here. 20 Books of Summer is is hosted by Cathy from 746books you can check out the rules (there really isn’t any) by clicking the link. This challenge runs from June 1, 2021 until September 1, 2021.

So how did I do in June…well I was able to knock off 10 books on this list. I knocked half the list down but there are some bid books still on this list and I wont lie I am a little intimidated and wondering why I did this to myself. I DNF’d 5 of the books so I have substitute books to fill in their spots. I know that I did not have to add any additional books but all I did was pick 5 from the books that I had already read in June.

Books that I finished:

Books that I DNF’d:

Books that I am adding in for the DND’d ones:

Books left to read on my list:

Are you doing any reading challenges this summer? If so how are you doing with them?

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Memes · TBR

It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? June 21, 2021

It's Monday What are you reading.png

Good Morning,

It’s the start of another week. It’s Monday! What are you Reading is hosted by Kathryn from Book Date, this is a weekly event to share what we’ve read in the past week and what we hope to read, plus whatever else comes to mind.

Recent Books

Katherine of Aragon, the True Queen by Alison Weir | (Six Tudor Queens #1) | Historical Fiction | Add to Goodreads

Bestselling author and acclaimed historian Alison Weir takes on what no fiction writer has done before: creating a dramatic six-book series in which each novel covers one of King Henry VIII s wives. In this captivating opening volume, Weirbrings to life the tumultuous tale of Katherine of Aragon, Henry s first, devoted, and true queen.

A princess of Spain, Catalina is only sixteen years old when she sets foot on the shores of England. The youngest daughter of the powerful monarchs Ferdinand and Isabella, Catalina is a coveted prize for a royal marriage and Arthur, Prince of Wales, and heir to the English throne, has won her hand. But tragedy strikes and Catalina, now Princess Katherine, is betrothed to the future Henry VIII. She must wait for his coming-of-age, an ordeal that tests her resolve, casts doubt on her trusted confidantes, and turns her into a virtual prisoner.

Katherine s patience is rewarded when she becomes Queen of England. The affection between Katherine and Henry is genuine, but forces beyond her control threaten to rend her marriage, and indeed the nation, apart. Henry has fallen under the spell of Katherine s maid of honor, Anne Boleyn. Now Katherine must be prepared to fight, to the end if God wills it, for her faith, her legitimacy, and her heart.


Hidden Knights by Jennifer Anne Davis | (Knights of the Realm #2) | Young Adult, Fantasy | Add to Goodreads

With Prince Henrick dead, a foreign army in league with the king, and the palace taken, Reid must find a way to right the wrongs for the people of Marsden.

Reid never expected to find love, friendship, or her mother in the kingdom of Axian. She also never expected to become a leader for her people. With the king threatening to overthrow the dukes and take complete control of the kingdom, Reid realizes she may be the only one in a position to stop him. With the ring her father gave her, the commanders of the army at her side, and a master schemer in league with her, Reid just might be able to pull off the greatest upset in Marsden history—all she has to do in step into the role she was born for.

To protect her kingdom, Reid must outsmart them all. Luckily, she’s spent the last eighteen year learning the art of manipulation, and she isn’t above putting those skills to the test. 


Ink & Sigil by Kevin Hearne | (Ink & Sigil #1) | Fantasy | Add to Goodreads

Al MacBharrais is both blessed and cursed. He is blessed with an extraordinary white moustache, an appreciation for craft cocktails – and a most unique magical talent. He can cast spells with magically enchanted ink and he uses his gifts to protect our world from rogue minions of various pantheons, especially the Fae.

But he is also cursed. Anyone who hears his voice will begin to feel an inexplicable hatred for Al, so he can only communicate through the written word or speech apps. And his apprentices keep dying in peculiar freak accidents. As his personal life crumbles around him, he devotes his life to his work, all the while trying to crack the secret of his curse.

But when his latest apprentice, Gordie, turns up dead in his Glasgow flat, Al discovers evidence that Gordie was living a secret life of crime. Now Al is forced to play detective – while avoiding actual detectives who are wondering why death seems to always follow Al. Investigating his apprentice’s death will take him through Scotland’s magical underworld, and he’ll need the help of a mischievous hobgoblin if he’s to survive. 


The Light of the Midnight Stars by Rena Rossner | Historical Fantasy | Add to Goodreads

An evocative combination of fantasy, history, and Jewish folklore, The Light of the Midnight Stars is fairytale-inspired novel from the author of The Sisters of the Winter Wood.

Deep in the Hungarian woods, the sacred magic of King Solomon lives on in his descendants. Gathering under the midnight stars, they pray, sing and perform small miracles – and none are more gifted than the great Rabbi Isaac and his three daughters. Each one is blessed with a unique talent – whether it be coaxing plants to grow, or predicting the future by reading the path of the stars.

When a fateful decision to help an outsider ends in an accusation of witchcraft, fire blazes through their village. Rabbi Isaac and his family are forced to flee, to abandon their magic and settle into a new way of life. But a dark fog is making its way across Europe and will, in the end, reach even those who thought they could run from it. Each of the sisters will have to make a choice – and change the future of their family forever.


Ashes of the Sun by Django Wexler | (Burningblade & Silvereye #1) | Fantasy | Add to Goodreads

Long ago, a magical war destroyed an empire, and a new one was built in its ashes. But still the old grudges simmer, and two siblings will fight on opposite sides to save their world, in the start of Django Wexler’s new epic fantasy trilogy

Gyre hasn’t seen his beloved sister since their parents sold her to the mysterious Twilight Order. Now, twelve years after her disappearance, Gyre’s sole focus is revenge, and he’s willing to risk anything and anyone to claim enough power to destroy the Order.

Chasing rumors of a fabled city protecting a powerful artifact, Gyre comes face-to-face with his lost sister. But she isn’t who she once was. Trained to be a warrior, Maya wields magic for the Twilight Order’s cause. Standing on opposite sides of a looming civil war, the two siblings will learn that not even the ties of blood will keep them from splitting the world in two.


The Determined Miss Rachel by Laura Rollins | (Daughters of Courage #2) | Regency Romance, Clean Romance | Add to Goodreads

She wants nothing more than to leave.
He wants nothing more than for her to stay.

Change may be the only constant in life, but for Rachel Chant change has only ever meant loss. First her father passed, then she was forced to leave her mother, and now she has even lost her home. Enough is enough and Rachel determines to find a way to be with her mother once again. She is no longer a little girl, dependent on those charged with her care, and she won’t stand by while her mother slips beyond reputable society and further into poverty.

Christopher Dunn has always lived among the comforts of high society, but never as a true member. The son of a musician and now a tutor, he has long since given up on having a home or family. Change and disruption are a way of life for him. He’s a man without roots, and he’s fine with that. That is, until he meets Rachel.

Steady in the face of uncertainty and with a love of music that runs as deep as his own, Rachel first captures Christopher’s interest and soon afterward his heart. However, Rachel’s determination to return home won’t let her rest. But to return home would be to leave Christopher. Life, it seems, is not yet done taking away those she loves, and this time it just might be more than either of them can endure.

As the second stand-alone novel in a new series by author Laura Rollins, The Determined Miss Rachel continues the Daughters of Courage series. This charming story is a light-hearted, clean and wholesome romance set in the Regency era (think: a clean Bridgerton). All books in this series have their own Happily-Ever-After and can be read apart or enjoyed in proper order.


Currently Reading

The Lights of Prague by Nicole Jarvis | Historical Fantasy, Paranormal | Add to Goodreads

In the quiet streets of Prague all manner of otherworldly creatures lurk in the shadows. Unbeknownst to its citizens, their only hope against the tide of predators are the dauntless lamplighters – a secret elite of monster hunters whose light staves off the darkness each night. Domek Myska leads a life teeming with fraught encounters with the worst kind of evil: pijavice, bloodthirsty and soulless vampiric creatures. Despite this, Domek find solace in his moments spent in the company of his friend, the clever and beautiful Lady Ora Fischerová– a widow with secrets of her own.

When Domek finds himself stalked by the spirit of the White Lady – a ghost who haunts the baroque halls of Prague castle – he stumbles across the sentient essence of a will-o’-the-wisp, a mischievous spirit known to lead lost travellers to their death, but who, once captured, are bound to serve the desires of their owners.

After discovering a conspiracy amongst the pijavice that could see them unleash terror on the daylight world, Domek finds himself in a race against those who aim to twist alchemical science for their own dangerous gain.


The Bands of Mourning by Brandon Sanderson | Mistborn Saga – The Wax & Wayne Series #1 | Steampunk, Fantasy, Flintlock Fantasy | Add to Goodreads

hree hundred years after the events of the Mistborn trilogy, Scadrial is now on the verge of modernity, with railroads to supplement the canals, electric lighting in the streets and the homes of the wealthy, and the first steel-framed skyscrapers racing for the clouds.

The Bands of Mourning are the mythical metal minds owned by the Lord Ruler, said to grant anyone who wears them the powers that the Lord Ruler had at his command. Hardly anyone thinks they really exist. A kandra researcher has returned to Elendel with images that seem to depict the Bands, as well as writings in a language that no one can read. Waxillium Ladrian is recruited to travel south to the city of New Seran to investigate. Along the way he discovers hints that point to the true goals of his uncle Edwarn and the shadowy organization known as The Set.


A Master of Djinn by P. Djèlí Clark | (Dead Djinn Universe #1) | Historical Fantasy, Steampunk | Add to Goodreads

Cairo, 1912: Though Fatma el-Sha’arawi is the youngest woman working for the Ministry of Alchemy, Enchantments and Supernatural Entities, she’s certainly not a rookie, especially after preventing the destruction of the universe last summer.

So when someone murders a secret brotherhood dedicated to one of the most famous men in history, al-Jahiz, Agent Fatma is called onto the case. Al-Jahiz transformed the world 50 years ago when he opened up the veil between the magical and mundane realms, before vanishing into the unknown. This murderer claims to be al-Jahiz, returned to condemn the modern age for its social oppressions. His dangerous magical abilities instigate unrest in the streets of Cairo that threaten to spill over onto the global stage.

Alongside her Ministry colleagues and her clever girlfriend Siti, Agent Fatma must unravel the mystery behind this imposter to restore peace to the city – or face the possibility he could be exactly who he seems….


Clockwork Planet, Vol. 2 by Yuu Kamiya | (Clockwork Planet Manga #2) | Manga, Steampunk, Fantasy | Add to Goodreads

GEARS IN MOTION

Naoto and RyuZU have a tense encounter with Marie Bell Breguet and her bodyguard, Vainney Halter, but the four strike up a shaky alliance in order to fix the Core Tower in Kyoto. With the city’s most important structure in disrepair, Kyoto’s entire population is at risk, but Naoto believes he can save it before the city undergoes a Purge. This unstoppable team of renegades may be able to save millions of lives, but acting against government orders could spark a dangerous conflict. Is Naoto’s group ready to face the consequences of disrupting the order of the world itself? 


What are you hoping to read this week? Let’s chat in the comments below!

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Memes · TBR

It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? June 14, 2021

It's Monday What are you reading.png

Good Morning,

It’s the start of another week. It’s Monday! What are you Reading is hosted by Kathryn from Book Date, this is a weekly event to share what we’ve read in the past week and what we hope to read, plus whatever else comes to mind.

Recent Books

Sorcery of Thorns by Margaret Rogerson | Young Adult, Fantasy | Add to Goodreads

All sorcerers are evil. Elisabeth has known that as long as she has known anything. Raised as a foundling in one of Austermeer’s Great Libraries, Elisabeth has grown up among the tools of sorcery—magical grimoires that whisper on shelves and rattle beneath iron chains. If provoked, they transform into grotesque monsters of ink and leather. She hopes to become a warden, charged with protecting the kingdom from their power.

Then an act of sabotage releases the library’s most dangerous grimoire. Elisabeth’s desperate intervention implicates her in the crime, and she is torn from her home to face justice in the capital. With no one to turn to but her sworn enemy, the sorcerer Nathaniel Thorn, and his mysterious demonic servant, she finds herself entangled in a centuries-old conspiracy. Not only could the Great Libraries go up in flames, but the world along with them.

As her alliance with Nathaniel grows stronger, Elisabeth starts to question everything she’s been taught—about sorcerers, about the libraries she loves, even about herself. For Elisabeth has a power she has never guessed, and a future she could never have imagined.


The Blacktongue Thief by Christopher Buehlman | (Blacktongue #1) | Fantasy | Add to Goodreads

Kinch Na Shannack owes the Takers Guild a small fortune for his education as a thief, which The includes (but is not limited to) lock-picking, knife-fighting, wall-scaling, fall-breaking, lie-weaving, trap-making, plus a few small magics. His debt has driven him to lie in wait by the old forest road, planning to rob the next traveler that crosses his path.

But today, Kinch Na Shannack has picked the wrong mark.

Galva is a knight, a survivor of the brutal goblin wars, and handmaiden of the goddess of death. She is searching for her queen, missing since a distant northern city fell to giants.

Unsuccessful in his robbery and lucky to escape with his life, Kinch now finds his fate entangled with Galva’s. Common enemies and uncommon dangers force thief and knight on an epic journey where goblins hunger for human flesh, krakens hunt in dark waters, and honor is a luxury few can afford. 


The Jasmine Throne by Tasha Suri | (Burning Kingdoms #1) | Fantasy | Add to Goodreads

Author of Empire of Sand and Realm of Ash Tasha Suri’s The Jasmine Throne, beginning a new trilogy set in a world inspired by the history and epics of India, in which a captive princess and a maidservant in possession of forbidden magic become unlikely allies on a dark journey to save their empire from the princess’s traitor brother.

Imprisoned by her dictator brother, Malini spends her days in isolation in the Hirana: an ancient temple that was once the source of the powerful, magical deathless waters — but is now little more than a decaying ruin.

Priya is a maidservant, one among several who make the treacherous journey to the top of the Hirana every night to clean Malini’s chambers. She is happy to be an anonymous drudge, so long as it keeps anyone from guessing the dangerous secret she hides.

But when Malini accidentally bears witness to Priya’s true nature, their destinies become irrevocably tangled. One is a vengeful princess seeking to depose her brother from his throne. The other is a priestess seeking to find her family. Together, they will change the fate of an empire.


Shadow Knights by Jennifer Anne Davis | (Knights of the Realm #2) | Young Adult, Fantasy | Add to Goodreads

As a member of the Knights of the Realm, Reid swore an oath to protect her king only to discover he harbors a traitorous agenda.

Being a woman raised in a man’s world, Reid thought becoming a Knight would give her purpose and strength. So far, it has done nothing but give her trouble. The king ordered her to spy on the Axian royal family while she prepares for her marriage—a marriage neither she nor Price Dexter wants. Once in Axian, Reid realizes she’s being used as a pawn in a decades-old political match. With the king and Knights seemingly at odds, Reid’s allegiances are torn, especially when she finds friendship in the unlikeliest of places.

As the kingdom of Marsden teeters on the brink of civil war, Reid must decide whose side she’s on—even if that means betraying her king in order to save the kingdom.


In Solitude’s Shadow by David Green | Empire of Ruin | Dark Fantasy | Add to Goodreads

An army is at the gates of Haltveldt, a nation built on war, and nothing is as it seems.

Calene Alpenwood, a powerful warrior-mage gifted with the Spark, makes a shocking discovery that sets into motion events that put her at odds with the very masters she serves. Reuniting with her mother Zanna, a woman banished after a terrible crime, they team up with unlikely allies as they attempt to save the fortress of Solitude from destruction.

One thing’s for certain; ruin approaches if Solitude falls and life will never be the same when The Banished return.


Currently Reading

Hidden Knights by Jennifer Anne Davis | (Knights of the Realm #2) | Young Adult, Fantasy | Add to Goodreads

With Prince Henrick dead, a foreign army in league with the king, and the palace taken, Reid must find a way to right the wrongs for the people of Marsden.

Reid never expected to find love, friendship, or her mother in the kingdom of Axian. She also never expected to become a leader for her people. With the king threatening to overthrow the dukes and take complete control of the kingdom, Reid realizes she may be the only one in a position to stop him. With the ring her father gave her, the commanders of the army at her side, and a master schemer in league with her, Reid just might be able to pull off the greatest upset in Marsden history—all she has to do in step into the role she was born for.

To protect her kingdom, Reid must outsmart them all. Luckily, she’s spent the last eighteen year learning the art of manipulation, and she isn’t above putting those skills to the test. 


The Bands of Mourning by Brandon Sanderson | Mistborn Saga – The Wax & Wayne Series #1 | Steampunk, Fantasy, Flintlock Fantasy | Add to Goodreads

hree hundred years after the events of the Mistborn trilogy, Scadrial is now on the verge of modernity, with railroads to supplement the canals, electric lighting in the streets and the homes of the wealthy, and the first steel-framed skyscrapers racing for the clouds.

The Bands of Mourning are the mythical metal minds owned by the Lord Ruler, said to grant anyone who wears them the powers that the Lord Ruler had at his command. Hardly anyone thinks they really exist. A kandra researcher has returned to Elendel with images that seem to depict the Bands, as well as writings in a language that no one can read. Waxillium Ladrian is recruited to travel south to the city of New Seran to investigate. Along the way he discovers hints that point to the true goals of his uncle Edwarn and the shadowy organization known as The Set.


The Determined Miss Rachel by Laura Rollins | (Daughters of Courage #2) | Regency Romance, Clean Romance | Add to Goodreads

She wants nothing more than to leave.
He wants nothing more than for her to stay.

Change may be the only constant in life, but for Rachel Chant change has only ever meant loss. First her father passed, then she was forced to leave her mother, and now she has even lost her home. Enough is enough and Rachel determines to find a way to be with her mother once again. She is no longer a little girl, dependent on those charged with her care, and she won’t stand by while her mother slips beyond reputable society and further into poverty.

Christopher Dunn has always lived among the comforts of high society, but never as a true member. The son of a musician and now a tutor, he has long since given up on having a home or family. Change and disruption are a way of life for him. He’s a man without roots, and he’s fine with that. That is, until he meets Rachel.

Steady in the face of uncertainty and with a love of music that runs as deep as his own, Rachel first captures Christopher’s interest and soon afterward his heart. However, Rachel’s determination to return home won’t let her rest. But to return home would be to leave Christopher. Life, it seems, is not yet done taking away those she loves, and this time it just might be more than either of them can endure.

As the second stand-alone novel in a new series by author Laura Rollins, The Determined Miss Rachel continues the Daughters of Courage series. This charming story is a light-hearted, clean and wholesome romance set in the Regency era (think: a clean Bridgerton). All books in this series have their own Happily-Ever-After and can be read apart or enjoyed in proper order.


What are you hoping to read this week? Let’s chat in the comments below!

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