Books: The Cheapest Vacation You Can Buy

ShadowsFrom Goodreads: The last thing Dawson Black expected was Bethany Williams. As a Luxen, an alien life form on Earth, human girls are…well, fun. But since the Luxen have to keep their true identities a secret, falling for one would be insane.

Dangerous. Tempting. Undeniable.

Bethany can’t deny the immediate connection between her and Dawson. And even though boys aren’t a complication she wants, she can’t stay away from him. Still, whenever they lock eyes, she’s drawn in.

Captivated. Lured. Loved.

Dawson is keeping a secret that will change her existence…and put her life in jeopardy. But even he can’t stop risking everything for one human girl. Or from a fate that is as unavoidable as love itself.


I picked up this novella after reading Obsidian, because Shadows is the prequel and I was curious to know more about Dawson and Bethany’s ill-fated relationship. I have to say, had I known there was a prequel available before reading Obsidian, I would have read it first, but as things turned out, I ended up reading the first full novel prior to reading this prequel.  That being said, I already knew the outcome going in, and yet, I almost feel like reading these stories backwards made me care even more about the characters than had I read them in the correct order.  Would I recommend reading Shadows after Obsidian?  Well, yes, I think I would, because even though I knew the ending going in, I had a healthy respect for all the characters and knew so much about them that I already loved the story before I even started reading.

And just like Obsidian, Shadows is an extremely well written novella.  Armentrout ties the novella and novel together seamlessly, giving the characters I loved, like Daemon and Dee face time, even though this isn’t their novella.  She also gives readers more background information about the Thompson triplets, characters readers tentatively meet in Obsidian, but don’t obtain much information about them as they’re extremely minute.

I will say that knowing the ending of Shadows was hard, especially as I’d gone and fell in love with the characters right away.  It killed me to know bad things were going to happen to them, and yet, I also feel like there is a light at the end of the tunnel here.  Based on the wording that Armentrout uses at the very end of this novella, I’m not 100% sold on the idea that what the DOD said happened really happened, so I do have hope as I go into Onyx, book two in the series.  Likewise, I’m very curious about this bond that seems to keep happening between the aliens and their human lovers… having seen what happens to Dawson and Bethany, I am worried for our characters Daemon and Katy as they seem to be in a similar situation at the end of Obsidian.  Which is another reason I’m not 100% sold on the end of Dawson and Bethany…

To be quite honest, it doesn’t really matter what order your read these two books in—Obsidian before Shadows, or Shadows before Obsidian… they’re both beautifully written and captivating, and you should read them both.  Four stars.

4 stars

I purchased this novella from Amazon:

Kindle | Nook


{February 5, 2014}   {ARC Review} Fates by Lanie Bross

FatesFrom Goodreads: One moment. One foolish desire. One mistake. And Corinthe lost everything.

She fell from her tranquil life in Pyralis Terra and found herself exiled to the human world. Her punishment? To make sure people’s fates unfold according to plan. Now, years later, Corinthe has one last assignment: kill Lucas Kaller. His death will be her ticket home.

But for the first time, Corinthe feels a tingle of doubt. It begins as a lump in her throat, then grows toward her heart, and suddenly she feels like she is falling all over again–this time for a boy she knows she can never have. Because it is written: one of them must live, and one of them must die. In a universe where every moment, every second, every fate has already been decided, where does love fit in?


This novel started out very promising, but as the story unfolded, it became a bit too Alice in Wonderlandesque for me.  I like alternate worlds as much as the next person, but I never was a fan of Alice and Wonderland, and the worlds that Bross creates as Corinthe and Luc try to save his sister were just a tad bit beyond my believability radar.  With gnomes, blood nymphs, deadly trees, and killer bees, the novel goes from the human world and believable scenarios to a sudden forced suspension of belief—and this is something I have a hard time with, personally.  If an entire novel takes place in an alternate world, that’s one thing, but when the novel jumps between alternating worlds and they’re so vastly different, almost comically so, then I have a harder time suspending reality and taking the plunge into the new world.  That seems to be the case with this novel.  The human world fit and was believable.  I like Corinthe and the way the story was playing out, but suddenly the characters find themselves in the world of the blood nymphs, and it was just such a difference; such a shock that I found myself losing interest quickly.  I think part of my issue here also stems from the quick succession of events as well.  The novel wasn’t choppy, per say, but I definitely didn’t feel that it was fluid.  Luc is awe struck by Corinthe the first time he meets her, and he suddenly can’t forget her.  Even when she’s trying to kill him, all he wants to do it kiss her.  He falls quickly and hard, and I just felt like there wasn’t enough time to build anything up in order for me to fall in love with the characters, and so when they suddenly disappear into an alternate world, I just couldn’t keep up anymore.

While an interesting premise, this novel just isn’t for a person like me.  But, if you’re a lover of novels like Alice in Wonderland, then I think this book might be right up your alley.  I, personally, can only give it two stars, though.

2 stars

Random House Children’s and Delacorte Press have both been extremely gracious in allowing me to read an ARC of this novel, via Netgalley, in exchange for an honest review prior to its release on February 11, 2014.

Amazon | Kindle | Barnes and Noble

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