September 2018 Wrap Up

September 2018 Wrap Up

Hello and Happy October, friends! We’re finally to my favorite time of the year, Halloween! September was a difficult month reading-wise. I only read and finished three books, started some others, and set them aside because I just didn’t have the focus to read. Going back to work in the beginning of the month, and all of the responsibilities associated with that put a cramp in my reading style.

But I did read some awesome books this past month, so check out my September 2018 Wrap-Up.

Books I read last month

1.The Casquette Girls by Alys ArdenSeptember 2018 Wrap Up

In the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, a New Orleans teen discovers that her family has magic in their blood. Adele discovers that her ancestor was part of a coven of witches that trapped vampires in the attic of an old convent hundreds of years before. But Adele has accidentally set them free, and they’re coming after her to break the curse the coven placed upon them.

Keep an eye out for my review of The Casquette Girls coming next Monday!

September 2018 Wrap Up2. The Cruel Prince by Holly Black

Jude and her twin sister Taryn were stolen from the mortal lands when they were young, after their mother’s former husband (and father to their sister) killed their parents and stole them away to the faerie lands. Having grown up with the faeries, Jude wants to be just like them, brutal and beautiful. She dreams of being a knight in the king’s court. But the youngest prince, Cardan has it out for Jude, and will stop at nothing to make sure she never achieves her goal.

Might you be interested in reading my thoughts on this title? Make sure to tell me in the comments!

 

3. The Spellbook of Katrina Van Tassel by Alyssa PalomboSeptember 2018 Wrap Up

The Legend of Sleepy Hollow is a beloved tale, told countless times in film, television, and cartoon form. It’s always been told from the point of view of Ichabod Crane, a school teacher. Never before have we seen the story through the heroine, Katrina Van Tassel’s eyes. In the new release The Spellbook of Katrina Van Tassel, author Alyssa Palombo has done just that.

Want to read my thoughts of The Spellbook of Katrina Van Tassel? Check out my review on Creating Herstory before this book is released tomorrow!

These three books bring my total books read for 2018 to 42 so far. I only need to read 8 more to reach my goal (which shouldn’t be a problem).  
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Interview with Katie Hamstead, author of Kiya Hope of the Pharaoh

Katie-Teller-Author-Photo-2

Amanda: In three words how would you describe yourself?
Katie: Wife, mother, Aussie.

Amanda: What made you want to be a writer?
Katie: I don’t think there was one specific thing that made me decide. My parents always nurtured my creativity, so I’ve been writing stories since I was twelve. The writing has been on and off over the years, but when I found myself with downtime after I married and fell pregnant, I picked it up again.Then, after positive feedback, I decided to look into querying. What could it hurt right?

Amanda:  What is your writing process like?
Katie: I am a pantser, so I come up with an idea, work out the beginning and the end, and allow my characters to take me the rest of the way. For Kiya I needed to implement research and establishing a timeline of events, and I molded the story around that.

Continue reading

Review: Secrets of the Realm is a wonderful sea-faring voyage

secrets-of-the-realm

Synopsis:

Blamed for her uncle’s death, fifteen-year-old Annie is on the run. Knowing the perils she will face on the streets of 18th century London, Annie disguises herself as a boy.

Her life changes course when she becomes Captain Hawke’s cabin boy. Not only must Annie work alongside the Realm’s motley crew of outcasts and gentlemen, she must also keep her superstitious shipmates from discovering she is a girl.Annie vows she will never leave the Realm, where dreams are chased, shattered lives can mend, and secrets are stowed like keepsakes in an old desk drawer.

But, when Annie’s past catches up with her, can she stay on the Realm? More importantly, will she have a choice?

Review:

It’s been a long time since a Middle Grade (MG) historical fiction has caught my interest. Secrets of the Realm by Bev Stout drew me in hook, line, and sinker and kept me interested and wanting more throughout the whole book. I wasn’t quite sure what to expect right off the bat with this one, I knew that it was historical fiction, but the title of the novel sounded somewhat mystical to me. While I was slightly surprised to see that it wasn’t, I wasn’t the least bit disappointed in the story. Secrets of the Realm is a gem of a book!

Anne/Andres is a wonderful character who you are rooting for from the beginning to the end.  I was constantly wondering if her crew mates were going to discover her secret— that the captain’s cabin boy is really a female in disguise. Annie was everything you could want in a young female protagonist. She was extremely independent and brave in an environment where many people thought women did not belong. It is easy for children and adults alike to connect with such a strong character.

The supporting characters in this book were equally as intriguing. I found Doc to be one of my favorites. While he had a sad story, he was kind to Annie and took on such a wonderful fatherly role. Captain Hawke was an interesting man of many secrets, some of which I would still like to find out. The rest of the crew ranged from hilarious and endearing to unpredictable and somewhat frightening. I couldn’t help but fall in love with them all as well as the story.

Secrets of the Realm was not only a wonderful, sea-faring voyage, but it was a rare look at a coming-of-age story.

5/5 Stars

Check out my interview with Bev Stout here

 

Find Secrets of the Realm Online:

Goodreads

Amazon

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Find Bev Stout Online:

Twitter: @bev_stout

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