Before I Ever Met You by Karina Halle ~ Review & Teaser (@MetalBlonde)

I loved how both characters in Before I Ever Met You were able to get a second chance at love. They had their reasons not to fall, but it was obvious these two belonged together!
Before I Ever Met You
Title: Before I Ever Met You
Author: Karina Halle
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Published: April 24th 2017

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A light-hearted STANDALONE CONTEMPORARY ROMANCE that will make you believe in love again.

I first met William McAlister when I was just a teenager.

He was handsome, had a beautiful wife and was on the verge of success, having just joined my father as his business partner. Mr. McAlister was full of smooth charm, but back then he was barely a blip on my radar. Just a family friend.

Fast forward ten years: I’m 25 years old and a single mom trying to make things right for her seven-year old son. I’ve made some mistakes, grappled with my demons and now I’m back in the city of Vancouver, getting a second chance at a better life.

I’ve started by working for my father’s production company as an executive assistant. My first day on the job and I already know I could have a promising career there.

That is until I see Will McAlister for the first time in a decade.

Now recently divorced and as sophisticated as always, Will has gone from being my father’s friend and business partner to something so much more.

We’re both older, for one thing, and he just oozes this worldly confidence and stark sexuality. Combined with his tall, muscular build and sharp suits, strong jaw and bedroom eyes, Will has turned into one hell of a distraction.

A distraction I’m having a hard time staying away from, considering his office is right across from my desk and I work with him in such close proximity.

But it’s just a harmless crush, right?

It’s just an innocent fantasy of screwing him on his desk, right?

It can’t ever be more because he’s my father’s best friend, business partner, and my boss.



I was a little reluctant to pick up this read because of the whole age gap, and best friends daughter romance, but come on... it's Karina Halle... it's got to be good, right? I am so glad that I took the chance, because Will and Jackie were perfect for one another, and at times I forgot about the age difference! I just wanted to see them grow and be happy together!

The way Will's life crumbled in the beginning really broke my heart. It was sad that he gave up so much for the one person who he thought he loved unconditionally, only to have her crush his spirit. Going back to Vancouver was the fresh start he needed, and way more than he bargained for.

I could see that Will and Jackie’s connection growing right from the start. Jackie was a kind, determined girl who wanted to make her father proud of her once again by doing well in this job. Will was unsure he needed an assistant, but was willing to let his business partners' daughter fill the role. They worked well together, and I could see that they were growing feelings for one another.

The time Will and Jackie spent together outside of the office strengthened their connection and I could see it was only a matter of time before these two crossed the lines. Will formed his own connection with Jackie’s son Ty, doing things together they all enjoyed. It really melted my heart seeing them bond together.

I really enjoyed Halle’s writing once again. There wasn’t a lot of drama and I liked seeing Will and Jackie fall for one another. I was unsure of what support Jackie would get from her parents, and at times her father annoyed me, but I could see that they loved their daughter and grandson. This was a really sweet read, where I saw two characters that had faced hard times, cross paths and found a new kind of happiness together.

I just loved will, he didn't hide his feelings, he told Jackie exactly what he wanted!

“... And when you find what makes your heart beat, your soul sing, you have to hang on to it. That’s you Jackie. I’m done doing things halfway. It’s all or nothing now. And with you, I’m all in.”
Damn. Damn his pretty mouth and those sweet, sweet words.
“So, can I take you on a date?” he asks.
I laugh. “I just said it was just sex.”
“And I just said I’m all in. This is how I do just sex. Come on over to my place tonight. I’ll show you what a date with me is like when it’s just sex.”

Kindle Page 192

“Dream girl,” he whispers. “Tell me I have your heart. I won’t let it go, not for any moment, not for any reason. Tell me I have your heart and I’ll keep it next to my own.”

Kindle Page 310

Karina HalleKarina Halle is a former travel writer & music journalist and The New York Times, Wall Street Journal & USA Today Bestselling author of The Swedish Prince, The Pact, Love, in English, The Artists Trilogy, Bad at Love & over 45 other wild and romantic reads. She lives on an island off the coast of British Columbia with her husband and her adopted pup Bruce, where she drinks a lot of wine, hikes a lot of trails and devours a lot of books.

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The Kiss Thief by L.J. Shen ~ Review & Teaser (@lj_shen)

Honestly, this book blew me away! I picked it up and could not put it down! I enjoyed everything about it: the passion, the intensity and how it was all pieced together into one incredible read!
The Kiss Thief
Title: The Kiss Thief
Author: L.J. Shen
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Published: January 6th 2019

Buy Now - Amazon USAmazon AusB&N

They say your first kiss should be earned.

Mine was stolen by a devil in a masquerade mask under the black Chicago sky.

They say the vows you take on your wedding day are sacred.

Mine were broken before we left church.

They say your heart only beats for one man.

Mine split and bled for two rivals who fought for it until the bitter end.

I was promised to Angelo Bandini, the heir to one of the most powerful families in the Chicago Outfit.

Then taken by Senator Wolfe Keaton, who held my father’s sins over his head to force me into marriage.

They say that all great love stories have a happy ending.

I, Francesca Rossi, found myself erasing and rewriting mine until the very last chapter.

One kiss.
Two men.
Three lives.
Entwined together.

And somewhere between these two men, I had to find my forever.

I cannot begin to express what a fantastic read The Kiss Thief turned out to be! It had so many elements that I enjoyed and I couldn't put it down! I loved that it was an enemies to lovers kind of read, that it involved the Mafia, and the writing was so well done that it always felt so intense!

Francesca did come across as the spoiled daughter of a mob boss, promised to another member of The Outfit, and had dreams of marrying Angelo. However the more time I spent getting to know her I could see there was a lot more to her. She wanted more for herself, but was raised to think that she would never be anything more than a trophy wife and a bearer of children. When she met Keaton, he turned her world upside down, taking some of her firsts and getting under her skin.

I was unsure as to why Keaton wanted Francesca at first, so it was interesting to see the reasons unfold. Keaton had every intention of keeping her at arms length, but she somehow broke down his walls. He was a hard, determined guy who found it hard to trust anyone. He had big plans to fix the corruption in his area and wanted to bring all those to justice. He didn't count on Francesca getting under his skin, changing all his plans and the future he envisioned for himself.

This is the second book I have read by L.J. Shen, and honestly she has redeemed her self as I didn't enjoy the first book that I read of hers. This one had so many gritty, heartbreaking and intense moments. I adored the characters and my heart ached for what they had lost, but I loved what they became together. They weren't perfect, they made mistakes, but together they were a strong and passionate couple.  

I love the intensity in both of these passages. The first one is of Wolfe letting others know that Francesca is his, and the second Francesca has given in to her desires!

“This is the last time you raise your voice to my fiancée, not to mention throw things around like a poorly trained circus monkey. Nobody—and I do mean no person on this planet—talks to the future Mrs. Keaton like this. Any wrath she is to endure is mine. The only person she answers to is me. The only man to put her in her place—if and when needed—would. Be. Me. You will be respectful, agreeable, and polite to her. Tell me if I’m not understood, and I’ll make sure to make my point by destroying everything you care about.”

Kindle Page 115

“I need you inside me.”
“I can’t explain.”
“Yes, you can. You’re just afraid to.”
Wolfe Keaton was a kiss thief, but it wasn’t only a kiss that he stole. He stole my heart, too. Ripped it from my chest and put it in his pocket. I did what he promised me I would do, and willingly—I spread my legs and begged him, once again, this time meaning every word. “Because you were right. You said I’d come to your bed willingly—and I am. So, take me.”

Kindle Page 231

L.J. ShenL.J. Shen is an International #1 best-selling author of Contemporary Romance and New Adult novels. She lives in Northern California with her husband, young son and chubby cat.

Before she’d settled down, L.J. (who thinks referring to herself in the third person is really silly, by the way) traveled the world, and collected friends from all across the globe. Friends who’d be happy to report that she is a rubbish companion, always forgets peoples’ birthdays and 
never sends Christmas cards.

She enjoys the simple things in life, like spending time with her family and friends, reading, HBO, Netflix and internet-stalking Stephen James. She reads between three to five books a week and firmly believes Crocs shoes and mullets should be outlawed.

Other reviews featuring L.J. Shen
Dirty Headlines 
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Lucian Divine by Renee Carlino ~ Review & Teaser (@renayz)

Renee Carlino has written a few books that have touched my soul, so I was eager to try this romance featuring a drunk Guardian Angel!
Lucian Divine
Title: Lucian Divine
Author: Renee Carlino
Genre: Paranormal Romance
Published: January 9th 2017

Buy Now - Amazon USAmazon AusB&N

From USA Today Bestselling author, Renée Carlino, comes a totally unique and different love story that’s sure to make you question what’s really out there…or who.

“My guardian angel is a drunk.”

Evelyn Casey’s life is at a standstill. She’s in her mid-twenties, struggling with the dating scene in San Francisco. Nothing seems to be working out, and she’s starting to think that she’ll live out her days in her crummy apartment with her overbearing roommate, Brooklyn. It’s absurd, but sometimes Evey longs for a guardian angel to show up and save the day.

And then he does. Seriously. His name is Lucian and he’s a guardian angel, been on the job for two thousand years. His sudden presence in her life is both good—he’s brilliant, witty, and warm—and bad—he’s brilliant, witty, warm, and hot as —-. But as perfect as Lucian seems, he’s got problems of his own. He’s taken up drinking and he’s brazenly inserted himself into Evey’s life, going against the greatest cosmic law ever created.

For Evey, the rules are simple: You are not allowed to hook up with your guardian angel. But sometimes fulfilling your destiny requires a leap of faith, a confrontation with God.

Yes, God as in God.

I saw this book a long time ago and decided it was time to pick it up. I really enjoy Angel reads so I was a little excited to get into it. I enjoyed meeting Evey, and getting to know her sweet personality. Lucian was amusing, an angel drinking in a bar was funny! Especially when he gets caught by Evey... it really was a strong beginning to the story.

However, then it got a little rushed, as we skip through the days and weeks, face many hurdles, and the strong confident Lucian that I liked, turned into a whiny boy. I honestly skipped through a fair bit of the book as he was annoying me and some of the stuff was petty.

There were some moments that touched my heart, as Evey and Lucian struggled with a few issues. They relied on one another as they got through these difficult times, and became stronger a long the way. The ending was sweet, and I loved how it all turned out... I think we all need that little bit of hope!

I have read Renee Carlino in the past and have thoroughly enjoyed her writing style, but Lucian Divine didn’t quite hit the mark for me. However, I know I will pick her work up again because some of her reads are some of my favourites. It's just that this particular read didn't work for me.

Here are two sweet moments where Lucian expressed his deep feelings.

I bent near her ear and whispered, “Evey, next time, in the next life we’ll be together—that’s how this will be corrected. This will be righted. This can’t be our forever fate. Next time we’ll live together, we’ll die together. We’ll experience every war together, inside ourselves and outside in the world. We won’t be out of reach, unavailable, unattainable, just love longing to be. Let’s keep moving fast in opposite directions. Keep praying we meet on the other side. I’ll see you there; I know I will. I have to believe that. Watch for me. I’ll be barreling toward you, arms wide open, and then we’ll crash into each other with the force of two spent lives yearning to be one.”
When her eyes opened, one stray tear trickled down her cheek. I touched her shoulder, and she relaxed.

Kindle Page 78

“How do you feel about me?”
He rolled onto his side to face me while brushing the hair out of my face. I studied his angled jaw, his black hair, his piercing eyes. “Evelyn, I’ve existed for more than two millennia. In two thousand years, I have watched over so many lives. At times, more than five souls were my responsibility alone. I’ve watched all of them die. I’ve held many of them while they were dying. It’s in my nature to do that, to give peace to my souls, to look out for them when I can, to sway the good ones to do the right thing, and to protect man and life here on Earth. I’ve watched over stunningly beautiful and brilliant women, but I have never felt love for any human the way I feel it for you. You are literally the air in my lungs.”

Kindle Page 105

Renee CarlinoRenée Carlino is a bestselling author of contemporary women's novels and new adult fiction. Her books have been featured in national publications, including Cosmopolitan Magazine, InStyle Magazine, USA TODAY, Huffington Post, Latina magazine, Publisher's Weekly, Redbook, Sunset Magazine, Coastal Living and the Union Tribune. She lives in Southern California with her husband and two sons. When she's not at the beach with her boys or working on her next project, she likes to spend her time reading, going to concerts, and eating dark chocolate.

Other reviews featuring Renee Carlino
Swear on This Life
Before We Were Strangers 
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Would Be King by Kim Karr ~ Review & Teaser (@authorkimkarr)

I've read a few of Kim Karr's books before, and because I'm enjoying Royal Reads at the moment, I decided to grab Would Be King. It was a pretty fun and passionate read, and just what I needed!
Would Be King
Title: Would Be King
Author: Kim Karr
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Published: February 27th 2019

Buy Now - Amazon USAmazon Aus

A dare turns into so much more...

All I want to do is get to work on time.
But a Prince Harry look-a-like is trying to steal my cab,
And I'll fight for it to the bitter end.

In the midst of our verbal battle,
I discover I lost my wallet.
So I bargain--a free ride for a kiss.

What starts out as innocent quickly steams up the windows.
His lips are soft, and when he tugs me closer,
I press my entire body against his hard muscles and practically rip his tie off.
This is the best taxi ride of my life.
Until it ends just as quickly as it began.
Embarrassed over my behavior, I rush out without so much as a goodbye.

But fate, that bitch,
Has us pounding on the same locked door.
Already knowing I'm going to be fired,
I curse my new boss and his new rules.
The hot suit laughs and dares me to tell my new boss what a dick he's being.
With nothing to lose, I accept.

Never in a million years could I have imagined he is my new boss.
And totally off-limits.
Dating him is against the rules.
His rules. He doesn't seem to care.
Until I dare him not to fall in LOVE with me.

Even then he doesn't mind.
The only four-letter word he lives by is DUTY.
Too bad this would-be-king is about to fall hard...for a commoner.

It's been a while since I've read anything by Kim Karr, so when I read the blurb for this one, I just had to get it. I enjoyed watching Gigi and Max's relationship grow, the fun they had together and the trouble they found themselves in. It was an amusing, sweet and intense love story, with a touch of suspense to keep me on my toes.

Gigi and Max's first encounter was hilarious, fighting over the same cab, a dare for a ride, and a kiss and run! Only to discover that Max was to be her new boss! I knew that these two would be fun to read about and I wasn't disappointed. As the story unfolded, their connection grew, however they faced a lot of hurdles, as Max's status caught up with him and Gigi had to make decisions for her future.

Max though, being royal and all, would know to stick to his gut instincts. If he were to fire someone, he needed to stick to it–not rehire them later–I could see that this was going to backfire on him. His decision making skills seem to be fine when it came to Gigi, he fought for her every step of the way.

I enjoyed most of this read, just a few niggling issues that had me rolling my eyes, so I predicted what was going to happen. Otherwise, I quite enjoyed Karr's writing style, and the cast of characters that she introduced. There was plenty of passion between the pages, and I had hopes that Gigi and Max would be able to find happiness.
This was an amusing moment I had to share!

“Fine, one kiss and that’s it. But if your wandering hands so much as try to touch me here,” I point to my boobs, “or here,” I point to my sex, which is way too wet for my liking, “I will knee you in the balls.”
His mouth quirks up. “I’m rather fond of my balls, so I’ll be sure to mind the rules.”

Kindle Loc 435

Kim KarrKim Karr is a New York Times & USA Today bestselling author of eighteen novels. Best known for writing sexy contemporary love stories, she enjoys bringing flawed characters to life and creating romances that are page worthy.

Her stories are raw, real, and explosive.
Her characters will make you laugh, make you cry, make you feel.
And her happily-ever-afters are always swoon worthy.

From the brooding rock star to the arrogant millionaire to the Football Player. From the witty damsel-in-distress to the sassy high-powered businesswoman to the boutique owner. No two storylines are ever alike.

If Kim's not writing, you can find her wandering through antique stores with her husband, trying out new fitness classes with her sons, venturing out to new coffee shops with her daughter, or with her nose stuck in a book.

Other reviews featuring Kim Karr
The Thing About Love
Connections series
Frayed #4
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Glass Castle Prince by Nicole Williams ~ Review & Teaser (@nwilliamsbooks)

I adore Nicole Williams, and when I found this one, you know I jumped into it immediately! I was addicted right from the start and read it quickly! I loved Charlotte and Edward and I what to visit this world again! 
Glass Castle Prince
Title: Glass Castle Prince
Author: Nicole Williams
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Published: March 18th 2019

Buy Now - Amazon USAmazon Aus

From New York Times and USA Today bestselling author, Nicole Williams:

A glass castle shatters as easily as a glass house—all it takes is one stone.

Prince Edward has known this all of his life, and taken staunch measures to ensure he doesn’t give the public any reason to pick up their rocks. Or torches. Or pitchforks. As a twenty-two-year-old in line to ascend the throne, he lives more like a cloistered monk than his college-aged peers. Restraint is the tone of his life, resilience the theme.

That is, until he meets a young woman who couldn’t care less about his title—unless she’s poking fun at it. Charlotte Everly grew up a stone’s throw away from the royal family’s summer house, but her life was, and is, entirely different from the prince’s.

They clash at each turn, disagree on every topic, and bear a general contempt for one another. Until . . .

One night, accompanied by one proposal, leads to one lapse in judgment . . .

Results in a nationwide scandal neither of them will escape.

I do love a good royal read, and I absolutely adored Glass Castle Prince by Nicole Williams. It had the right mix of humour, romance and smouldering moments that had me hoping this book would never end. I was introduced to a cast of characters that I could not get enough of... It is now one of my favourite Nicole Williams read!

Both Charlotte and Edward came to Valmont to try and work out their futures. They were both a little lost and were trying to decide on which path they needed to take. What they didn't expect was each other! Their initial meeting was hilarious and I loved how Edwards friends kept lightening the mood, despite the serious situation Charlotte was in!

I could see that Edward was intrigued by Charlotte, as she was unlike any girl that he had met before. She challenged him and kept him on his toes. Charlotte was unsure of her feelings, and it took her some time to figure out who she wanted, but I could see the shift in her early. I loved seeing these two interact and exploring their chemistry and building a good friendship that turned into more.

I thought the Glass Castle Prince was the perfect Royal read and Nicole Williams delivered it perfectly. She introduced me to a world and characters that I had fun getting to know. There were numerous side characters that I would love to see again: Edwards friends, Charlotte's best friend Anne, and even Duchess Josephine! I also liked that both Edward and Charlotte had strong relationships with their parents. I really do hope we get to come back to this world again; I would love to see how Edward and Charlotte are going in the future!

Both these teasers melted my heart a little!

“Your thoughts don’t toil over vapid obsessions, nor do you seem to care much what others think.”
I rolled up onto my elbow, my forehead creasing. “Was that a nice way of saying I’m not exactly pretty?”
His back was to me as he switched off the lamp, leaving only one to fill the darkness. I watched his shoulders rise and fall as he took several breaths. “That was my way of saying that for someone who gives very little thought to beauty, I’ve never seen anyone so beautiful in my life.”

Kindle Loc 1657

“I live in a glass castle where everyone and anyone throws stones based on hearsay and half-truths. I didn’t want the same for you.”
My footsteps echoed in the pool house when I moved closer. “Let them throw their stones. I don’t shatter so easily.”
“No. You certainly don’t.” One corner of his mouth pulled. “You’re my Iron Princess, Charlotte Everly.”

Kindle Loc 2893

Nicole  WilliamsBiographies are impossible for me to write without landing somewhere in the realm of lame. Which is ironic since I’m a writer attempting to, you know, do what I do and write. For whatever reason though, trying to sum up who I am is enough to make me rock myself into a psychiatric-something in a dark corner.

I could try explaining what I love: books, writing, adventures, the outdoors, animals, my family, my friends. I could list what I don’t love: hate, needles, narrow-mindedness, pantyhose, celery. I could go into my background and my sources of inspiration, sprinkling throughout witty bits of commentary and the expected author-fare of a few words that make a person scratch their head and reach for a dictionary. But the true biography of who I am is penned on the pages of my books, hidden between the words. Where I’ve been, who I am, where I’m going—it’s all there.

At the end of the day, I’m an open book.

Now that you know who I am, I’d love to get to know who you are. Life is about connections—here’s where you can connect with me:

Other reviews featuring Nicole Williams 
Exes with Benefits 
Trusting You and Other Lies
The Outsider Chronicles
Hard Knox #1
Damaged Goods #2
Lost and Found series
Lost and Found #1
Near and Far #2
Finders Keepers #3
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Accidental Romeo by Nicole Snow ~ Review & Teaser (@NicoleSnowBooks)

This was a read I picked up using my Kindle Unlimited subscription. I hadn't read Nicole Snow before, so I was eager to give her a try. This was a sweet read and I enjoyed my first Snow read and will definitely pick up more of her work in the future!
Accidental Romeo
Title: Accidental Romeo
Author: Nicole Snow
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Published: January 1st 2019

Buy Now - Amazon USAmazon Aus

Accidentally his. Fun fact: Fate is a four letter word.

A perfect stranger just kissed away the worst day of my life.
Emphasis on perfect.
Hunter Forsythe is so far out of my league I can't even buy tickets.
And now he's insta-date to my stuck up sister's wedding?!

Brace for everything to go hilariously wrong.
But my mysterious new hero is no flipping joke.
Rich as sin. Knockout eyes. A snarlypants single dad. Muscle, muscle everywhere.
Too good for the quiet baker girl no one ever noticed.

Then I find out what - and who - put him up to this insanity.
I'm so mad I could spit nails.
Imagine my surprise when Romeo keeps coming.
Hear my door slamming in his face.
Witness my jaw hanging when he starts wooing me for real.

Dream dates, family dinners, and soul-branding nights.
I'm in full Juliet mode before I see the crack in his world.
The longing. The loss. The secrets. The danger.
Does love even fit in Hunter's jagged heart?
Or is a Shakespearean tragedy in our stars?

What a fun read Accidental Romeo turned out to be! I really enjoyed meeting Hunter and Wendy, and how a chance meeting brought them together. It was a quick and entertaining read, with a touch of mystery and suspense that will have me back for more.

Wendy and Hunter's first meeting was amusing, and I liked that Wendy made such an impression that he couldn't get her off his mind. He knew what he wanted and would not let her go. Hunter treated Wendy nicely, and although they didn't know each other well, he was willing to stand up for her, especially in front of Wendy's bridezilla sister!

Wendy was sure that she was being set up by her mother, but it soon became apparent that there was a serious connection between them. Wendy also formed a strong connection with Hunters son Ben, which was sweet and they spent a lot of time together.

I really enjoyed Accidental Romeo, and how these two fell for one another. Although there were times that Hunter frustrated me because he was quick to listen to others, instead of getting the facts first. For my first Nicole Snow read, it was very enjoyable and I know I will be back for more! 

I loved the growl in Hunter's voice here!

I smile at him, then at Mother. Both her and Dad are dressed in black, except for the white roses pinned on them. “You both look nice.”
“And you look simply adorable in that dress!” Mother hisses approvingly. “Doesn’t she, Hunter?”
“Sure does,” he growls. “Never seen a woman so perfect in my life.”

Kindle Page 185

Nicole SnowNicole Snow is a Wall Street Journal and USA Todaybestselling author. She found her love of writing by hashing out love scenes on lunch breaks and plotting her great escape from boardrooms. Her work roared onto the indie romance scene in 2014 with her Grizzlies MC series.

Since then Snow aims for the very best in growly, heart-of-gold alpha heroes, unbelievable suspense, and swoon storms aplenty.

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The Eyes of Tamburah by Maria V. Snyder ~ Review & Teaser (@HqnTeenAus)

When it comes to Maria V. Snyder, there's every chance I am going to snap up her reads and devour them... and that's precisely what I did with The Eyes of Tamburah. It was an amazing new fantasy world, which I quickly became part of, watching Shyla struggle and fight for her life!
The Eyes of Tamburah (Archives of the Invisible Sword, #1)
Title: The Eyes of Tamburah
Author: Maria V. Snyder
Series: Archives of the Invisible Sword #1
Genre: YA Fantasy
Published: June 17th 2019

Buy Now - Amazon USAmazon Aus | Kobo

Treasure hunting has never been more dangerous... Tomb Raider meets Poison Study!

New York Times bestselling author Maria Snyder begins an action-packed new fantasy series.

'He thinks you are the thief...' 

Shyla is a researcher who resides in the underground desert city of Zirdai, which is ruled by the wealthy Water Prince and brutal Heliacal Priestess. Even though Shyla is sun-kissed - an outcast, considered cursed by the Sun Goddess - she is still renowned for uncovering innumerable archaic facts, lost artefacts, ancient maps, and obscure historical documents. Her quiet life is about to change when Banqui, an archaeologist, enlists her services to find The Eyes of Tamburah: legendary gemstones that bestows great magic to its wielder. These ancient objects can tip the balance of power and give whoever possesses them complete control of the city.

But chaos erupts when The Eyes are stolen soon after they're found - and Shyla is blamed for the theft. Forced to flee, with the Prince's soldiers and the Priestess' deacons on her trail, Shyla must recover the jewels and clear her name. A quest that will unearth secrets even more valuable than The Eyes of Tamburah themselves...

Maria V. Snyder is one of my favourite fantasy writers, so when I came across this new series of hers I was excited to dive in! She did such an amazing job creating this world and city, which is at least 98 levels of city under the soil. It was interesting to meet the characters, seeing who ran the city and what their beliefs were.

The story focuses on Shyla, a girl raised by monks, who had moved to the city and was treated like an outcast because of the colour of her hair and her skin. She kept to herself and took on small jobs to earn her money. When her one friend loses something that she helped him locate, she finds herself working for the Prince and threatened by the Heliacal Priestess. She faced a lot of challenges, she was betrayed, and was always in danger. But no matter what happened, she found the strength to get back up and push herself to succeed.

Shyla was always watching her back, but had such a kind soul. She met a lot of new people, but it was hard to trust them, as they could betray her at anytime. I’d like to see more of them to figure out what their role is in this story and whether they can be someone that Shyla can trust. It also looks like she has a potential love interest, and I'm excited to see how this relationship goes.

The Eyes of Tamburah was a fascinating read! I loved the detail of the world, trying to imagine it expanding under ground. My heart ached for Shyla a number of times, as people judged her because she was that little bit different. She was a determined girl with a big heart and was willing to do anything to save a friend. She sacrificed so much, but also learned a lot about herself. This book was just the beginning of Shyla's journey, and I'm looking forward to coming back!

It was sweet to see a little emotion from Rendor...

“You owe me a favor,” he’d said.
She waited.
“I’d like to use it.” He held up his hand, stopping her.
“This is a rather simple request. Come back alive. Not cooked by the sun or shot by an arrow or stabbed or drugged with holy water.”
“Is that all?” she teased, but Rendor was not in a teasing mood. “I’ll try.”
“Not good enough.”
“I’ll try really hard.”
“What do you want me to say? I don’t want to be injured or killed. But I can’t promise something like that.”
“All right, then I’d like something else instead.”
That seemed too easy. “What else?”
“A kiss.”

Kindle Arc Loc 3993

When Maria V. Snyder was younger, she aspired to be a storm chaser in the American Midwest so she attended Pennsylvania State University and earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Meteorology. Much to her chagrin, forecasting the weather wasn’t in her skill set so she spent a number of years as an environmental meteorologist, which is not all. Bored at work and needing a creative outlet, she started writing fantasy and science fiction stories. Over a dozen novels and numerous short stories later, Maria’s learned a thing or three about writing. She’s been on the New York Times bestseller list, won a half-dozen awards, and has earned her Masters of Arts degree in Writing from Seton Hill University, where she is now a faculty member. Her favorite color is red. She loves dogs, but is allergic, instead she has a big black tom cat named…Kitty (apparently naming cats isn’t in her skill set either). Maria also has a husband and two children who are an inspiration for her writing when they aren't being a distraction. Note: She mentions her cat before her family.

When she's not writing she's either playing volleyball, traveling, or taking pictures. Being a writer, though is a ton of fun. Where else can you take fencing lessons, learn how to ride a horse, study marital arts, learn how to pick a lock, take glass blowing classes and attend Astronomy Camp and call it research? Maria will be the first one to tell you it's not working as a meteorologist.

Other reviews featuring Maria V. Snyder 
Soulfinders series
Shadow Study #1
Night Study #2
Dawn Study #3

Healer series
Taste of Darkness #3 
read more "The Eyes of Tamburah by Maria V. Snyder ~ Review & Teaser (@HqnTeenAus)"