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Word to Dreams

YA & NA Fiction At It's Best - Specializing in YA

Celebrities, Fashion, Fomance, Chaos And So Much More.

New York Dolls - Catherine L. Hensley

I would like to thank the author for providing me with a complimentary copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. Doing so does not sway my review in any way.

Years ago, when The Devil Wears Prada and Confessions of a Shopaholic were hitting the shelves and I was knee deep in classic chick lit novels, I had this feeling when reading them. A giddy feeling, where I could enjoy these novels and not really have to think about the story, but let them flow and bring me into a world that the characters were fun, exciting and bold. This book, New York Dolls, brought me back to that time and I can happily say that the author sits well with the likes of Sophie Kinsella, Emily Giffin and Laura Weisberger.

Like most chick lits, you have a title that could mean so many different things and a story that you can pretty much figure out where it's going, but you also have the ups and down, quirks and thrills, spills and chills that get you to the end. This book does not disappoint in any of those areas. It also puts you right in with the character, to the point that as you read, you are the character and you don't want to stop reading until you are fixated on the last sentence of the last page.

A child of the 80's, growing up in the Midwest, I had been fixated with NYC once I got into my teen years. The music, the styles, the look, the scenes, Saturday Night Live, and so much more had me devouring everything I could get my hands on about the city. Reading this book brought everything back. Luckily, I've been to NYC three times as an adult, so I was able to put more of a realistic perspective into everything while I was reading. I had also been really into the fashion mags of that time frame. Elle, Young Miss, Seventeen, etc, I read just about everything fashion magazine that I could get my hands on. With Denton working for such a magazine, it was icing on the cake.

The author gave Denton the ride of her life. Celebrities, fashion, romance, chaos and so much more. There was a depth to Denton that you just wanted to see everything go her way. You couldn't help but laugh at her guffaws, want to hug her when she felt the world was crumbling around her, want to celebrate with her during the good times, etc. All this is the work of an amazing writer and storyteller. It's one thing to tell a story, it's another to bring the listener/reader into the story as it's being told.

Anyone who likes chick lit will like this book. Don't like the term chick lit? I don't like the term women's fiction to describe this awesome genre of fun and exciting reads. I look forward to reading more from this author and I can see her going far. One of the things I would suggest to bring more readers in, is a different concept art for the cover. What she has is good, but I don't think it brings the story into the cover like it should.

Source: http://wordtodreams.blogspot.com/2015/01/review-new-york-dolls-by-catherine-l.html


The Book of Ivy - Amy Engel
Oh my!  I rarely get book hangovers, but this one gave me a doozy.  I could kick myself in the butt for waiting so long to read this.  This was an amazing book, with all the right elements, in all the right spots and hit at all the right times.
There are conspiracies, romance, betrayals, hope, despair, revenge, chaos and utter sacrifices in this book.  There is shock and awe.  There is the giddiness of the realization of love.  There is the darkness, light and everything in between.  
Ivy gets stuck in a situation that she should never have been put in.  A situation that tugs at the reader.  A situation that you wish for anything she could get out of.  A situation where you realize just how deceitful certain individuals are.  As a reader, I was right there in the courtroom with her.  I wanted to shake her and tell her to spill it all because those that rightfully should have been there for her, took the easy way out.  
I can't wait for the next book in the duology to come out, The Revolution of Ivy.  It doesn't come out until November 2015 though, 10 long months from now.  It seems like a lifetime.  That's how good this book is.
I recommend this book for teens on up.  It's set in a dystopian future, but I don't really categorize it as a dystopian read.  It's more of a thriller than anything.  Is it November yet?

Reading progress update: I've read 34%.

The Book of Ivy - Amy Engel

Wish I had read this earlier!  Great read so far.  Very interesting.

Spell Check

Spell Check - Julie Wright 4.5/5

I wish to thank the author for providing me with a complimentary copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. Doing so does not sway my review in any way.

Honestly, this has to be the best coming of age witch book I've read in ages. Perfect for the teen reader, it also draws in to the imagination of those older. Who doesn't think it would be cool to find out that they are actually a witch? Unfortunately for Ally, she didn't read the letter her grandmother had sent, so she haphazardly realized, after the fact, that she was casting spells on people.

A fun and easy read, this book flows pretty smoothly from start to finish. There are a few small bumps in the road that makes the story a bit jumpy, but all in all, it takes you for a ride that you just don't want to end. Witches and trolls have their places. A "ghost" from the past is on the prowl to get to Ally. You have your classic high school bully who gets a taste of her own medicine but than doesn't seem to know when enough is enough. A love interest that may either grow into something more or run for the hills.

The rules on what can and can't be influenced by magic are smart choices by the author. It gives the magic depth, clarity and a control. Too many times we read about witches and magic and there just doesn't seem to be a start and stopping point to them, which makes for a chaotic story line. I don't know if the author will be writing more about Ally, her magic and her family but if she did, I will read it.

Some of the book reminded me of the bumblings of Samantha in the series Bewitched and of the series,Sabrina, the Teenage Witch. Both trying to do what is right but sometimes things getting in the way and setting off a chain of events that made you giggle but also warmed you at the same time. This is a book that even though it's about witches and magic, will also warm you because of other messages that come through.

Future Gone

Future Gone - Alexandar Tomov I would like to thank the author for providing me a complimentary copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. Doing so does not sway my review in any way.

A book of very short stories, but all with a deep sense of meaning to them. Most of them were just too short. So much more could have been said instead of implied and it would have made for a much better read. Having said that, the author is on to something with this short stories and with a proper translation from Bulgarian to English, the meanings would cross over so much better.

The stories, as stated in the synopsis, about human nature. The author takes parts of it and creates a dramatic story that projects the nature to its fullest and leaves the reader to mull the meanings over. If you are looking for a quick, fun read, this isn't for you. This book, even with the stories being a couple pages long, really makes you stop and think over what you just read.

I, myself, have never read a book like this and will definitely be doing rereads of it throughout the years. I do hope that the author goes back to it and expands on the stories a bit more. That is the crutch of this book, the stories are just too short as I stated previously. There is so much more I want to know about many of the subjects of the stories that at times it was quite frustrating when the story just ended. Having said that, this would be a great book for professors to incite discussions in the classroom though. I can only imagine the philosophical debates that it would project.

A book quite unlike others, I recommend this book to anyone who is looking for something that will make them stop and think before going on to the next story. A short book that will keep you captivated for hours.

Normally, This Would be Cause for Concern: Tales of Calamity and Unrelenting Awkwardness

Normally, This Would be Cause for Concern: Tales of Calamity and Unrelenting Awkwardness - Danielle Fishel Having grown up watching Boy Meets World and now spending time with my own children, watching Girl Meets World, I was immediately drawn to this book when I saw it at the library. I feel bad because I know her as Topanga and couldn't have told you for a million dollars what her real name is. I hoped this book would give me more of an insight of Danielle.

First off, if you are looking for a tell-all, this book isn't for you. The only thing the author spills on, is some really bad dates, a couple sweet relationships and herself, to a point. She skirts over her childhood, with a few stories here and there about basically a pretty normal life and the effects of falling off her Big Wheel. Not much about filming Boy Meets World, because, basically, if you are reading her book, you know she was on it and totally bypasses other adventures in her filmography.

This book pretty much is about how she's just like everyone else when she's away from the "office." Danielle is pretty klutzy and the majority of the book focuses on bloopers throughout her life. It also fills you in on just how strong her relationship is with her parents. Before calling 911 after an accident, she calls her mom, because she's always the one she thinks of first. Danielle talks about car accidents, one will have you wondering how her father stayed as sane as he did, pee accidents, which will have you chuckling, her Big Wheel disaster, which if you've ever had a Big Wheel, you will appreciate, and many more.

As a whole, this book is a fun read and fills the reader in on some moments you may have missed in Danielle's life. Piece by piece, it's a bit disjointed and I wish the author had provided a bit more insight on other jobs she had done in the entertainment industry. I hope she comes back later and provides a more complex look at her life, as a whole. I'm not looking for any shocks and awes, but I'd like to read more about things she did and the reason's behind them.

This is a quick and enjoyable read. This is a book that all ages can enjoy and mothers can wholeheartedly hand to their teen to read.

Going Down in Flames

Going Down in Flames - Chris Cannon Dragons. Oh my, who hasn't ever gotten the thrill at least once in their life when reading about dragons? And a crossbreed girl who shape-shifts into one? That's just icing on dragon cake! It's been a long time since I read a dragon book and this book did not disappoint.

The imagery that the author provides is by far one of the best that I've had the pleasure of reading this year. Being it's about a week and a half until the New Year, I'd say that I've saved the best for last. I found myself enveloped in the story, feeling what was going on, seeing the visuals as if in a hi-def dream and I was able to stay immersed from the beginning to the very end. That alone makes for one heck of a book. The authors descriptions couldn't have been any better and with a story that has so many different elements in it on so many different levels, this kept the story from losing its balance.

Bryn has a heck of a time ahead of her. As someone who was never supposed to be born, because of the mix of two different clans, which is never supposed to happen, she discovers the truth about herself. The changes have its ups and downs on her, but she is quite lonely because her fellow classmates shun her for something she has no control over.

Parts of the story could have been worked differently to provide more of a strength to the story overall. The whole revolution bit is a little lost because Bryn really isn't that involved with any of it. Also Bryn was not the most pleasurable person. As a mom, she grated on many of my nerves and well, she was probably supposed to be that way, but at times it just seemed too much.

Overall, this is a fascinating first book in a series of dragons, shape-shifters and the future of both. Anyone who likes to read about dragons would be a good fit for this book, as would someone who is testing the dragon waters for the first time. I look forward to reading further into this series and also whatever books the author comes out with.

Dead Girl Walking (Royal Reaper)

Dead Girl Walking (Royal Reaper) - Ruth Silver I was given a complimentary copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. Doing so does not sway my review in any way.

I was so excited to get the chance to read this book. The cover is intriguing, the premise original and being YA, it was right up my alley. Unfortunately, I didn’t love it. I liked it; yes, but from the get go I had such a hard time getting in to the story.

When I started reading it, the originality of the story wore off quickly. On top of that, the characters didn’t feel as developed as well as they could have been. There was a stiffness and awkwardness that needn’t have been there. When I started to get in to the story or start to get into the characters, something would happen, be it an editorial mistake or just lousy choices by the characters.

It also felt that the story, as soon as it started, pretty much ended. I would have liked a much longer part of Ophelia, alive. I think there is so much that the author could have touched on and strengthened the character but was missed out on by killing her off so soon.

Having said this, there is so much more to the story that many will enjoy. It just wasn’t the book for me.

Who R U Really?

Who R U Really? - Margo Kelly 4.5/5

This is the book that every person should read before they are let loose on the internet. This book captures and gives the reader the raw outline of how an Internet Predator behaves. This book shows how a child, with the strictest of internet parents, can be drawn in and groomed by manipulative people online. So many times you hear, but where were their parents during all this time? This shows how it can happen even with the most attentive parents.

This novel captured my interested from the very beginning. The topic is one that needs more attention because it shows just how easy it is for an Internet Predator to get hold of an innocent person. We hear about it in the headlines weekly, but this gives you factual information on just how the predators work and where it can lead to.

The author did a great job. Through the book you can feel the changes going with Thea. You start understanding the who's, what's and why's. I picked up early on the who from a certain detail that the author included, but even than, the twists and turns in the story really made this a strong read and I was not disappointed. In fact, Thea's mother's anguish at the end ripped me to the core and sent tears down my own cheeks.

The only things I had an issue with is that the story line itself felt a little jumpy at times. Like the author had been distracted by something while writing and her train of thought had been momentarily derailed.. I had a hard time with Thea's age. Certain things and actions made it feel she was older than what she really was and the relationship with her brother seemed a bit juvenile on his end, even though he is the older brother.

I recommend this to everyone. A great thriller that not only captures the readers imagination, but also provides a well meaning lesson on how to present yourself to others online and what red flags to be aware of when dealing with other online.

The Line Book Two: Walled

The Line Book Two: Walled - Anne Tibbets It has been about 6 months since I read the first book in The Line duology and I wasn't sure if I was going to be able to get back in to the story or find myself stumbling over things I had forgotten. Thankfully, the author provided crumbs from Carrier along the way that helped kick start my memory and be able to dive right back in with little disruption. Just as before, even with a conversation going on between characters, I could feel the action building up.

This takes place about a year after the first book ended. The twins are still infants, but are starting to lean towards toddler in their independent actions. In the beginning I was disappointed in the lackluster maternal actions of Naya and would have loved to have a one on one with her myself. Thankfully, she shows her true feelings when it counts. You could tell by the tense feeling that life in hiding had made them all a bit rougher around the edges. I also felt that living that way, that they would have had some kind of contact with the outside world to know exactly how bad things were getting there.

Having worked on The Line, Naya still had some intimacy issues. There were times when Ric didn't know what was going to happen with small gestures of love. Sometimes these moments were met with open arms and other times, especially when something triggered past memories in Naya, they were met with distance and coldness. In this book their romance is played out more and given freedoms that weren't possible in Carrier but is also kept in check with a bang at the end.

The action in the book pretty much goes and goes. There are slight pauses here and there, but for the most part I found myself reading at a frantic pace. Everything made me want to know more, quicker, and with more details. The author did not disappoint with any of that.

The ending of this book, which wraps up the duology of The Line, will throw you in a tailspin. So many different things going on which all combine to create one heck of an ending. My head is still trying to wrap itself around it. A satisfying ending at that. I recommend this to anyone who likes New Adult dystopian novels that have basis on actual people and their experiences.


Repossession - Rachael Wade I would like to thank the author for providing me a complimentary copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. Providing such does not sway my review in any way.

Now this is a unique scifi/dystopian novel. The book starts right after the invasion of the town of Morton, where our heroine Skylla lives with her parents, and the action starts up very quickly after that. We are introduced to the Invaders and the author describes them so well I could envision them quickly and smell their stench in my imagination. The invaders reminded me a bit of Skitters from the TNT show Falling Skies. Sky is saved by what she thought was a traitor, but is just really a guy who wants nothing more than to get to the camps and save his sister.

As the story goes on, with the action at a constant, a romance is bound by the unknowing if they will be alive not just the next day, but the next moment. This is where I felt the author strayed a bit and added some graphic sex scenes that just didn't need to be there. I'm not saying to take the sex out of the picture, but innuendos would have served just as well and made the novel acceptable for a wider age range.

I have to say, with the Seven Shepherds, which reminded me of the Sleepers in the rebooted version of Battlestar Galactica, I wasn't surprised by who was the Seventh. I actually had a feeling it was going that way for the majority of the story. I knew something was up and when the info on the shepherds was first talked about, I quickly put it together.

Jett, love that guy. He's not only a hottie in looks and emotions, he's quite frank and upfront. He will let you know how it is and where to put it if you don't like it. Very protective of Sky from the beginning, I was entranced with him from the beginning. By the end, I wanted to scream for him.

Kale...I really can't go too much in to him without giving away a lot. Let's just say, he's a spineless jerk. A wolf in a sheep's clothing.

The ending really took my breath away. It was so not what I was expecting and most authors would not have gone there. Part of me is dumbstruck while another part of me knows what a good move this was for the storyline and I give kuddos to the author.

I recommend this to anyone who wants a different take on aliens, invasions and sleeper agents. The book also dives into a different history of our Earth, the Big Bang Theory totally nose dives along with many other theories. I look forward to reading the next two books in this trilogy and can't wait to see where the author takes us with them.

Cheating Time

Cheating Time - T.R. Graves I would like to thank the author for providing me with a complimentary copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. Doing so does not sway my review in any way.

Carlie, our heroine in this novel, is going through many changes in this first novel in the Longevity series. She finds herself torn with emotions, romantically, mentally and emotionally. She discovers things about her life that she never knew, things that have been preordained and things that have been genetically altered. She finds that her mother genius has made Carlie into a pawn in the President's game.

The majority of this book is spent on the romantic emotions Carlie has towards her Surrogate Soldier. Born and bread to be the ultimate soldier, Jayden has always been more to Carlie than just that. Raised like siblings, but with each knowing they weren't, fate took over and love blossomed where neither thought it ever would. So much of the story is a battle of their emotions towards each other. There are so many roadblocks for them to overcome and the President is always, in some way or another, breathing down Carlie's neck.

This review is a bit hard for me to write. I hesitate with the four stars because I feel the whole cat and mouse romantic chase was way too long drawn out, but on the same hand, I couldn't stop reading, which means I was enjoying it anyway. The science involved with MicroPharm is well explained and never feels over the head of the reader. This is quite refreshing because too many times the scientific aspect of a story is so over the top, under explained or just so wordy, that it becomes a deterrent for the reader. It was quite the opposite with this one. The science involved actually piqued my interest and I with the advancements we hear about and read about, MicroPham is actually quite believable along with the breading of the Surrogate Soldiers. Genetics is something that is constantly breaking through barriers.

There is so much going on in this novel and at times story lines are intersecting one another, expanding and complimenting each other that it is quite an amazing feat that the author is able to harness it all and provide it to the reader in a way that makes sense and doesn't send the reader into a incoherent coma. The traits of each character comes out as needed, with some really surprising the reader. The author brings the boom when needed and provides the yin and yang at just the right moments.

I recommend this to anyone who likes a good scientific suspenseful thriller with just as much romance mixed in. I found myself always wondering what was going to happen next and being thrown off, just like the characters were, but in a good way because that means I didn't see things coming. I look forward to reading the future books in this series.

Second Son

Second Son - Cate Dean Review to come...

Claus: Legend of the Fat Man

Claus: Legend of the Fat Man - Tony Bertauski I would like to thank the author for providing me with a complimentary copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. Doing so does not sway my review in any way.

A new take on our beloved jolly fat man, Santa Claus, the legends that have made him what he is in our eyes and the elven, which do not remind you of what you grew up believing in. The magic we have grown up to, debunked with great explanations that are creative and thought provoking. The relationship between Claus and Jack has a whole new meaning and the author does the explanations justice. I do wonder if the evil Cold One’s, aka his Excellence, aka Janack aka Jack’s, personality was shaped a bit by the movie, The Santa Clause 3: The Escape Clause.

This book centers on the finding of a “Warm Blood” that Jack has wanted to get his hands on for years. This story takes place during the Fracture, where elven have been separated in to two different factions and are against one another. This has been caused by the personal agenda of The Cold One.

The author blew me away with his descriptive writing style. I felt the cold, blinded by the storms, was giddy with the formal introductions of the reindeer, awe struck by the technology of the elven , broken hearted over what had happened medically to Jack and understanding of how Claus wanted and needed to believe that his brother was so much more than what he thought of himself. The author tickles the reader’s interests in the beginning, warms us up to the story than without the reading even realizing it, is brought under the spell that the author has weaved.

There are so many different layers to this story. The elven, the warm bloods, Claus and Jack and Cane and so much more that trying to lasso it all together for this review is hard, to say the least. If you are looking for a more adult and dark version of the North Pole and its inhabitants, than this book is what you are looking for.

After all this, you are probably wondering about my rating. There is so much going on, that at times I felt a bit lost. I had to reread certain details, go back at times to get the gist of things and at times still didn’t fully get what was going on and I felt that was enough of a distraction to warrant the 4 star rating. Now, having said that, I do look forward to reading the other books in this series. There is something to be said about a story that twists from the known to make it into a more complex and thoroughly enjoyable read.

The Union (The Union Series #1)

The Union (The Union Series #1) - T.H. Hernandez I would like to thank the author for providing me with a complimentary copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. Doing so does not sway my review in any way.

A coming of age story, where the main character is trying to find her way in life but also finds more than she bargained for. Yes, not a unique story in itself, but the author took that basic notion and created a full and lush adventure with it. Readers will have to hold on to their seats tight, because there is action of some sort throughout the majority of the book.

Some of the details of how the Union just didn't seem to work itself out right. There were times I had to reread a line to try to understand what was ;being described for me. The romance seemed way too quick and extreme also, but how everything is set up, if the author had drawn it out longer it would probably have felt like a slow, boring read.

This book is a great dystopian read. The Union itself doesn't seem like such a horrible government, especially compared to others in the genre. Heck, I would love the idea of going into an apprenticeship after high school instead of going in to college. So much more is learned hands on than is learned through books and testing.

A good, strong beginning to what seems is going to be a great adventure series. I can't wait to see where the author takes her characters and what read more about them. This is a series that anyone who enjoys a story with romance, a strong female lead and our future world will dive right in to and come up for breath once the last word is read.

Alice + Freda Forever: A Murder in Memphis

Alice + Freda Forever: A Murder in Memphis - Sally Klann, Alexis Coe I would like to thank the publisher for providing me with a complimentary copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. Doing so does not sway my review in any way.

Before I started reading this, I had in my mind the movie Lost and Delirious, about two girls at a boarding school and in love and one of the girls pretty much has a break down and the movie Heavenly Creatures, where two girls have an intense but destructive relationship. In some ways, these movies are a good accompaniment to this book. This book centers on a, at the time, perverse relationship between two girls and the murder of one by the other.

This book wasn't an easy read. The wording is of a more refined manner and there are instances were the reader has to read the cursive writing of the character. Unfortunately, much is lost in this because the font is too small for writing in this manner. I found myself skimming, knowing that I was probably missing a good deal, but also knowing there was no way I was going to go cross-eyed while trying to read everything.

The story is that of two girls, back in the late 1800s, who had quite the unusual relationship at the time. As the author points out in the Introduction, "few people had heard of same-sex love, and even fewer believed it was anything less than perverse. In another section the author points out that it would be another 120 years before same-sex marriage would even be legal in the state of Tennessee. So from that alone, you can get a gist of some of the book.

The other part of the book is about how the relationship is seen by others, how the murder trial is handled and the portrayal of the key witnesses and professional opinions. Personally, I think that Alice was truly in love with Freda, but in a stalker, abuser, scary way that only would lead up to one outcome if not deterred. How do I feel about Freda? I think she was a bisexual player who eventually figured out how out of hand things had gotten, but also took for granted the total scope of Alice's feelings. To me, this is not an outright love story gone wrong, this is a story about mental health issues in an era that just didn't know how to handle that, along with same-sex relationships. Am I saying there is a problem with same-sex relationships? Absolutely not, love is love. But I don't feel that what was going on between these two women was that.

The author set her facts in motion very well. She was able to create an interesting perspective into this story. She really dissected Alice, her family and her way of life. There were times that it felt like the story was going in circles though before coming reaching an outcome. The drawings were good, but didn't pull me into the story in the way they should have.

In the end, I feel sorry for both women. One who needed mental health intervention and one who thought she had finally broke off from the web she had weaved but ended up dead instead. Who would I recommend this to? Most likely anyone who is interested in historical murder stories.