New Releases/#Free & Bargain Books for October 26th - November 1st #freebook #booksale #booklinkup #booklinky

Here are the New Releases / Free & Bargain Books, hosted by
Sharon over at Beck Valley Books, for this week! Check it all out below...

Authors please feel free to add your own books.
Readers please free to add your own finds.
(any genre except erotica welcome)

This weekly link up is hosted by Beck Valley Books & these awesome book loving blogs...

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(Strictly no Erotica please.  Steamy romance is fine but watch those covers people, incase any underage child is viewing it!)

Here is this weeks awesome selection!

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Top 5 things readers new to the series should know among other facts... The Quest of Fire Series by Brett Armstrong (Guest Post & #Giveaway) #christianfiction #fantasy #questoffire @justreadtours

Welcome to my tour stop with JustRead Publicity Tours! Check out all sorts
of info about this series from the author and enter the tour giveaway below...

(Quest of Fire #0.5)
By Brett Armstrong
Christian Epic Fantasy
Paperback & ebook, 138 Pages
November 10, 2020 by Expanse Books


Son of the Northern Realm’s Defender, raised among the dwarfs of Ordumair, Meredoch was anticipated to succeed his father. Some whispered he would bring the longed-for peace between Ordumair and their ancient foe, Ecthelowall. All of that changes when Ordumair’s Thane is killed and Meredoch and his family are exiled. From prestige to poverty, the young boy must chart a new course. 

As the years pass and the idol that was his father’s legacy tarnishes, his past threatens to resurface. An artifact of immeasurable worth to Ordumair is found and if recovered by the cruel Elder Ulster it means disaster for those Meredoch cares about. Battling creatures he believed only myths and racing Ulster’s minions to the prize, Meredoch must face the truth of his place in the world and claim his right of succession. 

(Affiliate links included.)

The Gathering Dark
(Quest of Fire #1)
By Brett Armstrong
Christian Epic Fantasy
Paperback & ebook, 438 Pages
June 24, 2020 by Expanse Books


Jason is an expert at running from his past. But when it catches up, he finds himself hiding in a peculiar inn listening to a tale from centuries past. 

The story is Anargen’s, a teen who is pulled from all he loves to follow his oaths of loyalty to the fabled King of the Realms. Together with his mentor, Cinaed, he rides north on a special quest to mediate peace talks between ancient foes—the men of Ecthelowall and the dwarfs of Ordumair. Nothing goes as planned. Many on both sides of the dispute despise Anargen’s Order. Worse, an arcane evil has returned to the North. This “Grey Scourge” seeks to ruin the peace talks and ensure a lost treasure held by the dwarfs is never found by those for whom it is meant. 

As Anargen’s story unfolds, Jason begins to wonder whether it is truly just a fable. He soon finds himself drawn into the conflict Anargen faced. A battle which has shaped and can destroy his world.

(Affiliate links included.)

Guest Post
By Brett Armstrong

(Note: These are the ideas I submitted for the author to choose from and he wrote up them all, so I'm sharing them all.😀)

Top 5 Things Readers New to the Series Should Know 

1. It’s a saga that’s got two threads to it, each centuries apart. As Quest of Fire progresses each strand is woven in with the other and the actions in the past ripple into the present.

2. There are two protagonists, one for each strand. Jason from the present thought the order of knights Anargen belongs to in the past were just legends. And he certainly didn’t anticipate that he would be pulled into the same quest he thought to only be a story.

3. As planned, the series is pretty expansive and set to be told over the course of seven books (four novels and three novellas). At the onset it’s pretty heavy on Anargen’s side of the story, but over the course of the series it will shift towards a balance and then to Jason’s part taking the lead. Like Succession, the other novellas will have a focus on characters from the novels with stories that have impacts on the novels, but are complete to themselves. If that makes sense?

4. I’m a history fan so there’s a ton of lore around every little place within the story world, known as the Lowlands. Though I’ve not been as consistent with it as I’d like, I try to share out little bits of what can’t be in the books on my website.

5. There are lots of new takes on familiar mythic creatures and monsters.

Top 10 Tips to Living in the Storybook World of the Quest of Fire Series 

1. Don’t try to talk up the dwarfs of Ordumair to the men of Ecthelowall and definitely not vice versa. Those two have some serious bad blood between them.

2. Having some wilderness survival skills is a plus. Even if you spent most of your life in the urban sprawl of Brackenburgh, you never know when a quest will pull you out into the woods on the run from monsters straight out of fables.

3. By the way, the monsters in the fables, those are real. For a long time, they’ve been kept at the fringes, but as the Lowlands have darkened, they’ve become freer and bolder.

4. When staying at a secluded inn with a creepy innkeeper who likes to lurk in the shadows, make sure to lock the room door and maybe scoot a chair against the door.

5. Be alert during travels. There can be just as much danger from corrupt and scheming merchants and the lesser nobility as the darker creatures of lore.

6. The Isle of Geists, Ruins of Glastonae, and Dungeons of Castle Valesgard got their names for good reasons, don’t expect fun stays and comfy bedding if you visit those locales.

7. To the average person a Spiritsword is just another blade, but in the hands of Knight of Light, they come to a literal fiery life.

8. If caught in the rain outside the Black River Inn, do duck inside. No sense getting drenched and much of the business to be done in Brackenburgh at night during a storm isn’t of the savoriest sort anyway.

9. While staying at the Black River Inn in Brackenburgh, make sure to stop and listen to Cinaed’s stories. They might change everything.

10. If you pledge oaths of loyalty to the High King, rightful ruler of all realms, be prepared to join right away in the Quest of Fire.

About the Characters 

The Gathering Dark

Jason Landsby– Seventeen-year-old protagonist living in the Modern Era of the Lowlands. He was born and raised in Brackenburgh, but for a couple years has been on the run. At the start of The Gathering Dark he’s forced to return to Brackenburgh to complete a task and settle a score he’d rather leave alone. But a quick detour into the Black River Inn changes his course for good.

Aria Graceline: Teenage waitress at the Black River Inn who catches Jason’s eyes and works her enigmatic charm to keep him listening to the story of Anargen until he’s captivated by the tale being told.

Storyteller: The owner of the Black River Inn and Aria’s grandfather. Mysterious in his own right, and absolutely adamant that nobody misses out on hearing out Anargen’s tale, despite pressure from Councilman Erickson of Brackenburgh to stop touting such tales as true history.

Anargen- Seventeen-year-old protagonist living in the Middle Era of the Lowlands. He grew up in the tiny village of Black River and has led a happy life. All the happier now that he knows the girl of his dreams loves him in return. But after his best friend Caeserus has a vision of a quest, he has to follow his oaths of loyalty to the High King and leave his safe and happy life behind for an adventure more incredible than any of the stories he read as a child.

Seren: Middle era teenage girl from the major city of Stormridge. Intelligent and insightful, she began as Anargen’s friend and like him was a bit shy about her feelings. From him she gains a feeling of belonging and home and from her gains a glimpse of the bigger world beyond.

Caeserus – Anargen’s best friend who has recently joined the Knights of Light and is convinced he’s had a vision of an important quest to save a tower that is holding the dark things of the world at bay.

Sir Cinaed – Anargen and the other teens mentor and a Knight Errant in their order. He is summoned far northward to participate in the signing of a peace accord between Ordumair and Ecthelowall

Grey Scourge – A legendary creature of destruction who is determined to not let the peace accord succeed, nor allow the young knights embarking on their quest discover something pivotal to turning the tide in the battle for the Lowlands.


Meredoch MacCowell – Son of the Defender of the Northern Realm, Augustine MacCowell, his dream is to succeed his father as the next Defender. He’s close friends with Duncoin till a truce between Ecthelowall and Ordumair falls apart and Meredoch is exiled from the only home he’d ever known. As he watches his family crumble, he becomes all the more determined to salvage the family legacy by becoming Defender of the Northern Realm, even if it means facing all the tormentors of his past and risking his life in battle with monsters to do it.

Lydia MacCowell – Meredoch’s younger sister who tries to hold the family together and act as a surrogate mother for the family after Meredoch’s mother dies. She’s always quick to side with their father, which causes some friction with Meredoch.

Duncoin – The only son of Thane Denhard of Ordumair and heir apparent to the rule of the dwarf nation. After the truce ends disastrously, he becomes obsessed with achieving what no one, including his father was able, lasting peace with Ecthelowall.

Elder Ulster – Influential and shrewd noble among the Ords. He advises a young Duncoin on how to lead their people when the time comes. He has his own ambitions though and is keeping his cards close to the vest.

Wirgerd – A monstrous fiend who sees the opportunity to profit off the discord between Ecthelowall and Ordumair and sees the Signet of Thanes as the perfect tool to meet his aims. Crushing anyone who gets in his way is just a bonus.

The Covers for the Books

The Gathering Dark

The guy on the front cover is really up to no good. I’m sure most people assume he’s Anargen or Jason, but when I gave the cover artist some of the character descriptions and example aesthetics, she opted to put the villain on the cover, which I think is pretty unique. Also, you’ll notice there are two suns setting on the book. Two suns, for different time periods in the same world. One sun is almost down, and ready to fall into night, the question is which era is about to be plunged into the dark?


This cover is a little more straightforward. In the backdrop is Bracken Forest and in the foreground is the Signet of Thanes. Both play an important role in shaping the direction of Meredoch’s life. The latter being the relic which men and monsters alike would kill to gain.

5 Unusual and Interesting Things about Writing/Writing this Series

1. I approach writing novels in a way that seems similar to trekking along a mountain path. I start looking from one high point out at the other high points (major story beats) in the distance, including where I want to ultimately end. But then as I start to make my way from waypoint to waypoint, I find myself going down in the valleys unseen with a lot of surprise streams and copses, and twists and turns to the path I never expected.

2. I view the plot, characters, and setting as all equally important to telling a good story, because each shapes the other throughout the course of the story. By the end, each should be different for what the other elements have done.

3. Sketching characters is a great way to discover things about them. Little details like whether a character wears a hat can give you a lot of unique ways to show instead of tell, like showing anxiety through a character crumpling his or her hat unconsciously.

4. For those looking to get a book published and it’s been a long wait, don’t give up and don’t stop improving your story. I started writing the Quest of Fire series while a senior in high school. It took twelve years for it to come together the way it has now and it was worth the wait. Sometimes stories just need time to ripen.

5. Writing this series has really shown me a lot about how there can be layers of stories happening within a scene. When I wrote chapter 15 of The Gathering Dark, I didn’t realize that an entire novella would come together from wondering why a character was a bit melancholy riding through Bracken Forest.

About the Author

Brett Armstrong has been exploring other worlds as a writer since age nine. Years later, he still writes, but now invites others along on his excursions. He’s shown readers haunting, deep historical fiction (Destitutio Quod Remissio), scary-real dystopian sci-fi (Day Moon and Veiled Sun), and dark, sweeping epic fantasy (Quest of Fire). Every story is a journey of discovery and an attempt to be a brush in the Master Artist’s hand. Through dark, despair, light, joy, and everything in between, the end is always meant to leave his fellow literary explorers with wonder and hope. Always busy with a new story, he also enjoys drawing, gardening, and spending time with his wife and son.

Tour Schedule

Follow along at JustRead Tours for a full list of stops!

Tour-Wide Giveaway

(1) winner will receive a story inspired prize package including:
• One copy of The Gathering Dark and Succession (Winner’s choice print or e-book) Custom signed bookplates for each if print chosen
• One copy of Wardrobes, Wizards, and Halflings: A Faith in Fiction Devotional (Winner’s choice print or e-book)
• Two pieces of book swag (winner’s choice from bookswag pics)
• Flash Drive with Digital print of previously unreleased The Gathering Dark artwork, MP4 of Quest of Fire’s theme music “Lament for Father” and Digital poster “The Making of Wirgerd” describing the visual and story development of Succession’s monstrous villain!

Be sure to check out each stop on the tour for more chances to win. Full tour schedule linked below. Giveaway will begin at midnight October 26, 2020 and last through 11:59 PM EST on November 2, 2020. Winner will be notified within 2 weeks of close of the giveaway and given 48 hours to respond or risk forfeiture of prize. US only. Void where prohibited by law or logistics.

Giveaway is subject to the policies found here.
Which guest post topic did you like the most and why?

Read an excerpt from Rescue You by Elysia Whisler, new from @harlequinbooks! #excerpt #romancebooks #womensfiction

Welcome to my tour stop! Read an excerpt below...

Rescue You
(Dogwood County #1)
By Elysia Whisler
Adult Contemporary Romance, Women's Fiction
Paperback, Audiobook & ebook, 384 Pages
October 27, 2020 by MIRA Books


She needs a fresh start. He’s got scars that haven’t healed. With the help of some rescue dogs, they’ll discover that everyone deserves a chance at happiness.

After a year of heartbreak and loss, the only thing keeping Constance afloat is the dog rescue she works at with her sister, Sunny. Desperate for a change, Constance impulsively joins a new gym, even though it seems impossibly hard, and despite the gym’s prickly owner.

Rhett Santos keeps his gym as a refuge for his former-military brothers and to sweat out his own issues. He’s ready to let the funny redhead join, but unprepared for the way she wiggles past his hard-won defenses.

When their dog rescue is threatened, the sisters fight to protect it. And they need all the help they can get. As Rhett and Constance slowly open up to each other, they’ll find that no one is past rescuing; what they need is the right person—or dog—to save them.

(Affiliate links included.)



Constance slammed on her brakes. Steam rose from the street as rain gurgled through the ditches. She killed the engine, stepped into the pattering droplets and scanned the shoulder of the road. Nothing there but the remains of a goose carcass. “Where are you, boy?” Constance gave a low whistle. 

It hadn’t been her imagination. The picked-over goose only made her more certain she’d seen a dog, weaving through the foggy afternoon air like a phantom. A lost dog, with his head bent against the rain as he loped along the muddy ditch. 

Constance whistled again. Silence, but for the sound of rain hitting the trees that lined the road. “Maybe I’m just tired.” She’d done a lot of massages today, which made her feel wrung out. Constance almost ducked back into the van, but halted. 

There he was: a white face with brown patches, peeking at her from behind a bush. “Hey, boy.” Constance squatted down, making herself smaller, less threatening. The dog watched, motionless. Constance drew a biscuit from her coat, briefly recalling the cashier’s amusement at the grocery store today when she’d emptied her pockets on the counter, searching for her keys. Five dog biscuits had been in the pile with her phone, a used tissue and the grocery list. 

“Dog mom, huh?” the elderly cashier had said.

“Something like that.” More like dog aunt, to all of the rescues at Pittie Place. Her sister, Sunny, had quite the brood. 

Constance laid the biscuit near her foot and waited. A moment later, the bush rustled and the dog approached. He had short hair and big shoulders. He got only as close as he needed to, then stretched his neck out for the prize. As he gingerly took the biscuit, Constance noted a droopy abdomen and swollen nipples, like a miniature cow.

So. He was a she. Constance inched toward her. The dog held on to the biscuit, but reared back. Constance extended her fist, slowly, so the mom could smell her. “You got puppies somewhere?” 

The dog whimpered, but crunched up the biscuit.

“Where are your puppies?” 

The dog whimpered again. Her legs shook. Her fur was muddy, feet caked with dirt. She had blood on her muzzle— probably from the dead goose. By her size and coloring, Constance decided she was a pit bull. 

Constance rose up, patted her thigh and headed toward her van. She slid open the side door, grabbed a blanket and spread it out, but when she turned around, the dog was several yards away. Her brown-and-white head was low as she wandered beneath a streetlamp, the embodiment of despair in the drizzle that danced through the light. 

Constance followed, slipping on the leaves that clogged the drainage ditch. The dog glanced once over her shoulder, but her pace didn’t quicken. Constance decided her calm demeanor was working, keeping the dog from fleeing. And let’s be honest: the biscuit hadn’t hurt. Chances were, the dog would be happy to have more as soon as she got wherever she was going. “Let’s see where you’re headed, then. Show me if you’ve got a home.” 

Constance followed her across the road, around the curve and down the narrow lane. Frogs popped like happy corn all over the slick street, but the chill of the oncoming winter slithered through Constance’s blood. 

She followed the dog for a good quarter mile. Even before she hooked a left down the unpaved road hidden behind the trees, Constance had figured out that the mama was headed to one of the handful of empty places that sat decomposing on the hundred or so acres the Matteri family owned. Constance paused only long enough to squelch the sizzle of anger that bubbled up inside before she pressed on, determined to know if the dog was a stray or a neglected mother from Janice Matteri’s puppy mill. 

Constance took the same turn and watched as the dog neared the abandoned house up ahead. Nobody had lived there in years. It was only a matter of time before it became condemned. The dog bypassed the crumbling porch of the old colonial and went around back. Constance knew little daylight was left, and she hadn’t brought a flashlight. She broke into a trot, clutched her coat tighter around her and didn’t slow until the dog came back into view. Constance followed her, her heart thumping harder with each step. 

The dog passed the rusted chain-link fence and disappeared over a rise in the property, near an old shed so overgrown with trees it was only recognizable by a pale red door. Just as she reached the hill, Constance heard a squeak. The sort of high-pitched noise that echoes from everywhere and nowhere all at once. Another squeak came. And another. She crested the hill and saw the dog slink inside the shed door. Constance got to the shed and pushed inside. The dog had reached her destination: a battered old mattress, three shades of brown, lying a few feet inside. The mewls, now loud and hungry, came from a shredded section of the mattress.

Constance narrowed her eyes. At first, she counted only two bobbing, brown heads, but as she drew closer there was a third. Then a fourth. The last one didn’t move nearly as much, just sort of waded on his stomach. The puppies had cocoa-colored fur and black muzzles. Eyes open. The ones that moved didn’t really walk, just stumbled into each other, like drunks. Mama dog curled around them and they all wiggled toward her abdomen. 

Constance knelt down next to the mattress and watched the suckling puppies. She decided they were about two weeks old. The air in the shed smelled of sour milk, poop and urine. She dug out another biscuit and reached, slowly, her hand in a fist to protect her fingers, her gaze on the mama for any sign she was upset, such as pinned ears, bared teeth or a raised ridge of fur down the back. The energy around the mom and her pups was calm, to the point of exhausted. Constance had certainly helped with enough of Sunny’s dogs over the years to know. She offered the biscuit and the mom took it. With her mouth busy, Constance carefully touched the smallest puppy, who shook so hard the tremble came from deep inside, beneath his skin and fur, straight from his bones. 

Constance rose slowly and did a quick search of the vicinity for more puppies, which turned up nothing but trash, vermin and an old orange crate, which she brought over to the mattress. 

Now to see if Mom was going to accept help.

Though daylight was precious, Constance waited until the pups were done suckling before she offered a third treat. “Let’s go back to my place,” Constance said as Mom accepted the biscuit. “My sister has a rescue for critters, just like you. And I help her all the time. You’ll be safe there. Does that sound okay?”

While Mama crunched, Constance reached for the two pups closest to her and, keeping an eye on Mom the whole time, she lifted them and settled them in the crate. Mom’s chewing quickened, so Constance acted fast, lifting the last two pups swiftly but carefully. She rose to her feet, crate in her arms. The mother dog was on her feet almost ahead of her, pointing her muzzle at the crate and whining.

Constance knew the mom would follow her anywhere she took those pups, but she also lacked any signs of aggression, almost as though she knew that this was their only chance. Or as Pete, owner of Canine Warriors and Constance’s longtime childhood friend, would put it, “You just got something about you, Cici. Everybody trusts you. People. Dogs. The d--- Devil himself.” 

Constance headed back to her van, chasing the sunset. As expected, the mother followed. Once to the vehicle, Constance opened the van and set the crate full of pups next to the blanket she’d spread out earlier. The mama dog leaped in after them. 

Constance slid the door closed, settled behind the steering wheel and let out a great sigh. Mission accomplished. She edged down the long, lonely road. The rain pattered on the windshield and the scent of dirty puppies hit her nose. She’d take them home tonight and get them settled in, see how they reacted to a new environment, then text Sunny in the morning. Constance had worked with enough dogs, and people, to know that introducing another new person this evening was bad news. Let Mama get used to Constance first, and get some good food and rest, before she was moved to Pittie Place. 

Tonight, at least, this girl and her babies belonged with Constance.

Excerpted from Rescue You by Elysia Whisler Copyright © Elysia Whisler. Published by MIRA Books.

About the Author

Elysia Whisler was raised in Texas, Italy, Alaska, Mississippi, Nebraska, Hawai'i and Virginia, in true military fashion. Her nomadic life has made storytelling a compulsion from a young age.

She doubles as a mother, a massage therapist and a CrossFit trainer and is dedicated to portraying strong women, both in life and in her works. She lives in Virginia with her family, including her large brood of cat and dog rescues, who vastly outnumber the humans.

What did you think of the excerpt?

A story full of romance and suspense... On the Run by Traci Hunter Abramson (Review & #Giveaway) #suspense #romancbooks #cleanreads @covenant_comm

Welcome to my tour stop! Check out my review and enter the tour giveaway below...

On the Run
(Guardian #4)
By Traci Hunter Abramson
Adult Romantic Suspense
Paperback, Audiobook & ebook, 296 Pages
October 12, 2020 by Covenant Communications


As one of the top investigative journalists in the nation, Elle Jameson has a knack for uncovering the truth. So when a promising lead points to corruption on a German military base, Elle anticipates a straightforward assignment. But then she stumbles upon a deadly conspiracy beyond anything she’s faced before, and her scrutiny does not go unnoticed. She knows too much, and she can’t be allowed to live. With no idea where to turn for help, she does the only thing she can: she runs.

The guardians, an elite team of undercover agents, have one job: safeguard those under their protection. As a new guardian, Nolan has just received his first solo assignment to help a young woman who just survived an assassination attempt. Within minutes of making contact with the beautiful journalist, however, their location is discovered. Thus begins a game of cat and mouse spanning the globe as the two work to stay ahead of a determined assassin. Nolan fights to buy Elle time to complete her investigation, and what she discovers is a plot that threatens the very fabric of America. In a desperate race against evil, Nolan and Elle are the only ones who can prevent global catastrophe.

(Affiliate links included.)

My Review

ON THE RUN is another exciting story in the Guardian series. A woman is on the run after an attempt on her life and a guardian comes to keep her alive. This is a military suspense with a constant undercurrent of danger, plenty of romantic sparks, and political intrigue. Recommended to fans of the genre and author.

The beginning of this story pulls you right in. Guardians are supposed to be ghosts. Never seen or heard and basically invisible. They are sent to protect US government personnel and military when needed and have access to all the databases. Kind of like an inter-agency support team that operates in the shadows to protect. Both these characters are very likable and I enjoyed the cameos from other characters in prior books, although this can definitely be read on its own. I found Nolan to be an interesting guardian as he's fairly new to the program so he's still figuring things out. Elle isn't quite sure who she can trust, but has to trust someone so she can figure out what exactly is going on and to stay alive. She's not sure how big of a threat she's facing and that threat slowly grows as the story goes along. I felt like the plot was plausible, which this author always does well and which I think is important for a suspense to work. I did struggle a bit with the almost inst-romance and how strong it was in this story. I think I would have liked it to more slowly building and taking more of a back role in at least the first half of the story. The action was all good - even though Nolan couldn't seem to keep invisible. Elle and Nolan both get themselves into messes quite frequently, but it does keep things interesting. I'm curious if the plot will carry on a bit in the next book.

In the end, was it what I wished for? I always enjoy this author's books. They're entertaining with some romance and plenty of military suspense, intense and action-packed without getting too violently gory. I'd recommend the rest of the series, SANCTURAY being my favorite so far.

Content: Some violence, but clean.
Source: I received a complimentary copy from the publisher, which did not require a positive review. All opinions are my own.

Other Books in the Series

(Linked to my reviews.)

About the Author

Originally from Arizona, TRACI HUNTER ABRAMSON spent much of her childhood exploring the little town of Pinewood. She is a graduate of Brigham Young University and a former employee of the Central Intelligence Agency. Since leaving the CIA, Traci has written multiple novels, including the Undercurrents trilogy, Royal Target, and the Saint Squad series. When she's not writing, Traci enjoys spending time with her husband and their four children. She also enjoys cooking, although she prefers an electric stove to the wood-burning variety.

Tour-Wide Giveaway

Have you read any of this author's books? Do you have a favorite romantic suspense novel or author?

I Can't Wait for... Lore by Alexandra Bracken (Can't-Wait Wednesday/Waiting on Wednesday) #CWW #WOW

Can't-Wait Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted here, at Wishful Endings, to spotlight and discuss the books we're excited about that we have yet to read. Generally they're books that have yet to be released. It's based on Waiting on Wednesday, hosted by the fabulous Jill at Breaking the Spine. If you're continuing with WOW, feel free to link those up as well! Find out more here.

Tag me on your CWW posts on Twitter (@wishfulendings) and I'll like and retweet!

The first thing that drew me to this one was the cover. I love Medusa stories and stories revolving around the Greek gods. The second thing that drew me was the author as I've pretty much loved all teh books I've read from Bracken. Then I read the synopsis and I was sold. It's such a great premise and I'm very curious to see how it all works out. It sounds like it will be quite a ride. It's my pick this week...

By Alexandra Bracken
YA Fantasy, Mythology
Hardcover, Paperback & ebook, 480 Pages
January 5, 2021 by Disney-Hyperion


From the #1 New York Times best-selling author of The Darkest Minds comes a sweepingly ambitious, high-octane tale of power, destiny, love and redemption.

Every seven years, the Agon begins. As punishment for a past rebellion, nine Greek gods are forced to walk the earth as mortals, hunted by the descendants of ancient bloodlines, all eager to kill a god and seize their divine power and immortality.

Long ago, Lore Perseous fled that brutal world in the wake of her family's sadistic murder by a rival line, turning her back on the hunt's promises of eternal glory. For years she's pushed away any thought of revenge against the man--now a god--responsible for their deaths.

Yet as the next hunt dawns over New York City, two participants seek out her help: Castor, a childhood friend of Lore believed long dead, and a gravely wounded Athena, among the last of the original gods.

The goddess offers an alliance against their mutual enemy and, at last, a way for Lore to leave the Agon behind forever. But Lore's decision to bind her fate to Athena's and rejoin the hunt will come at a deadly cost--and still may not be enough to stop the rise of a new god with the power to bring humanity to its knees.

(Affiliate links included.)

Will you be reading this one?

Check out a Q&A with the author... Warriors of Wing and Flame by Sara B. Larson (Interview, Review & #Giveaway) #yalit #fantasy @jeanbooknerd @torteen

Welcome to my tour stop! Today I have the pleasure of sharing a Q&A with the
author! Check that out, as well as my review, and enter the tour giveaway below...

Warriors of Wing and Flame
(Sisters of Shadow and Light #2)
By Sara B. Larson
YA Fantasy
Hardcover, Audiobook & ebook, 368 Pages
October 27, 2020 by Tor Teen


In Warriors of Wing and Flame, the spellbinding sequel to Sisters of Shadow and Light, acclaimed author Sara B. Larson continues her timeless tale of the bond between two sisters and the powerful magic that threatens to tear them apart forever.

The doorway between the magical world of the Paladin and the human world where sisters Zuhra and Inara grew up in isolation is open once more. But the joyous reunion with their Paladin father is shattered when a treacherous sorcerer attacks Inara, stealing her power for himself. Now nearly invincible and determined to rule over both Paladin and human alike, he will let nothing stand in his way.

Armed only with the power of love, courage, and sacrifice, two sisters must bridge the divide between worlds to confront the unspeakable evil that threatens to destroy everything―and everyone―they love.


“Packed with fascinating relationships, pulse-pounding romance, and breathtaking adventure, this story held me captive to every page.” ―Kathryn Purdie, #1 New York Times bestselling author of Burning Glass

"I was completely swept away with this fierce magical story of a broken family, and sisters trying to survive a mysterious past. Romance, betrayal, gryphons, forbidden doorways, and devoted sisters had me flipping the pages to unravel the secrets of this dark world where no one is who they seem to be. Larson has created a spellbinding world that has all the elements I love―magic, mystery, romance, and sisterhood! I can't wait for more!" ―Mary E. Pearson, New York Times bestselling author of The Kiss of Deception

"What a stunning gem of a story. Fans of gorgeous, emotional, action-packed fantasy are going to want to snap this up. I loved it so much, I read it in one sitting!" ―C.J. Redwine, New York Times bestselling author of the Ravenspire series

“Larson’s bold and imaginative tale of sisterhood, magic, and monsters is a deft exploration of loneliness, family, and friendship inside a citadel hedged by lies and blood.” ―A.G. Howard, #1 New York Times and international bestselling author of The Splintered Series

“Sisters of Shadow and Light is a rare beauty that will grip your heart and steal your breath away. I adored this book!" ―Jennifer A. Nielsen, New York Times bestselling author of The Traitor's Game

“Fantasy readers will become absorbed in the world-building and strong relationship between the sisters.” ―School Library Connection

“Fans of the author’s earlier work, as well as that of Kristin Cashore and Rachel Hartman, will enjoy this story. Purchase for those who love fantasy novels and Larson’s other books.” ―School Library Journal 

(Affiliate links included.)


Q: For readers new to the series, what should they know?

A: Sisters of Shadow and Light, the first book, is the story of two sisters who are trapped behind a sentient hedge in an abandoned citadel with their emotionally damaged mother and a housekeeper who takes care of them—until the day the hedge lets a stranger through and their entire world is thrown into upheaval. It’s the story of the bond between sisters, and [Warriors of Wing and Flame] is the conclusion to Zuhra and Inara’s stories. Their world has been torn apart—literally and figuratively. They’ve almost had a complete role reversal and they both have to come to grips with the changes and challenges they’re both facing, all while trying to stop a madman with an inordinate amount of power from destroying both the Paladin and human worlds. All while navigating first loves and losses.

Q: What was different about writing book two versus book one and what surprised you?

A: It’s hard to answer without getting too spoilery, but I will say this: I knew they were going to need to go through some anxiety from the events at the end of SOSAL, and I was planning on including it to a degree in the plot. But then I went through a very severe period of panic and anxiety that lasted for months before and during the drafting process of WOWAF and I realized the anxiety they experienced and dealt with needed to be much more present. It was hard to write about, but also strangely therapeutic. It was also fun to write these sisters as they kind of grew up and came into their own, realizing what love really is and of course I loved writing the kissing scenes!

Q: Why a duology versus a trilogy?

A: This story just natural lent itself to two books. Some plots you know can’t be squished into two books, but others would be stretched too thin to extend into three. Knowing the difference makes a big difference in how well a series is executed.

Q: Which character do you most relate to and why?

A: I relate to Zuhra most because she is the older sister, the one who feels responsible for Inara and trying to make sure she is happy (or as happy as possible) and protected. I am the oldest of five girls, so I feel that responsibility very keenly, even now when we are all adults and married and even have families of our own.

Q: What advice would both Inara and Zuhra each give about navigating their world?

A: Well, that would depend on if you mean their world before or after Halvor comes through the hedge and everything that happens after that! After their very sheltered, enclosed world is turned upside down and they are introduced to the real worlds outside the citadel, Zuhra would probably recommend getting to know some Paladin warriors who can teach you to protect yourself, keep you from being killed by rakasa, and take you flying on their gryphons. Inara would probably advise you to not rely on your power, because you never know when it might be taken away. That you have to find your strength from within and trust your heart, even when it’s frightening.

Q: When you’re not writing or reading, what do you enjoy doing?

A: I love hiking and boating—getting outside into nature is one of my happiest places. I love to travel and explore new places. My favorite place on earth is Kauai because it is so stunningly gorgeous, has beautiful beaches (I love the ocean) and breathtaking mountains—so I can do all my favorite things in one place: hike, lay out and read by the beach, and get delicious food.

My Review

WARRIORS OF WING AND FLAME is the second book in this duology, picking right up from book one, SISTERS OF OF SHADOW AND LIGHT. It's about first love, family, and danger, but most about two sisters whose roles have shifted and who are finding their own place in the world. Recommended to YA fantasy readers and fans of the author.

This one started just a bit slow for me. The author needed to recap the first book and I was totally good with that because it reminded me where we were at in this series. The story takes a bit to get going though as the characters are regrouping and figuring out what to do next. They're healing and getting to know the newer characters on the scene as well as figuring out some of their family's dynamics as things have changed quite a bit. However, things start moving about a fourth to a third of the way through and keeps a steady pace of danger and romance to the very end, with plenty of action and some sweet moments between these characters, both platonically and romantically.

I still really loved these sisters from the first book. I also liked how things get mixed up a bit with some new Paladins and how the sisters have to figure out what and who they can trust. Both are still working through their emotions, their relationship with each other, and their own strengths. As they were so sheltered before, their hesitation when it came to romance felt quite genuine with all the awkwardness and vulnerabilities of new love. I actually liked how things progressed, although slightly quick for one of the sisters. Book two definitely has more romance than the first book and takes more of a forefront. I especially enjoyed the last quarter of the book. It flowed well, completely held my interest, had an intense climax, and ended perfectly sweet. It also made me laugh at the sisters' father's reaction at one point. It was a nice touch to an otherwise stressful situation.

My biggest complaint for this book was that I wanted it to be a bit more complex in how the characters opposed the enemy and in their actions and reactions. So Adelrick (the sisters' father) who was a Paladin general and had all this battle experience behind him, as well as his battalion members who also had fought and were trained soldiers, seemed to not act like I thought they would have with their skill set. They were a bit impulsive and easily manipulated and out planned. I just thought that element of the story was a lacking. The pacing was also a little slow for me in places and the romance was a bit strong. I also wanted a bit more depth to some of the other characters.

In the end, was it what I wished for? I enjoyed reading this and finding out what happened after the cliffhanger in the first book. I think some things needed a bit more development, but regardless I loved these characters and the amazing fantasy world this author created. If you're a romance junkie and love stories with strong familial relationships, then I'd definitely recommend this one!

Content: Some heavy making out and violence, but still on the clean side.
Source: I received a complimentary copy from the publisher through JeanBookNerd Tours, which did not require a positive review. All opinions are my own.

Other Books in the Series

Sisters of Shadow and Light
(Sisters of Shadow and Light #1)
By Sara B. Larson
YA Fantasy
Hardcover, Audiobook & ebook, 368 Pages
November 5th 2019 by Tor Teen


From the acclaimed author of DEFY, Sara B. Larson, SISTERS OF SHADOW AND LIGHT is a timeless and fantastical tale of sisterly love and powerful magic

"The night my sister was born, the stars died and were reborn in her eyes…"

Zuhra and Inara have grown up in the Citadel of the Paladins, an abandoned fortress where legendary, magical warriors once lived before disappearing from the world―including their Paladin father the night Inara was born.

On that same night, a massive, magical hedge grew and imprisoned them within the citadel. Inara inherited their father’s Paladin power; her eyes glow blue and she is able to make plants grow at unbelievable rates, but she has been trapped in her own mind because of a “roar” that drowns everything else out―leaving Zuhra virtually alone with their emotionally broken human mother.

For fifteen years they have lived, trapped in the citadel, with little contact from the outside world…until the day a stranger passes through the hedge, and everything changes.

Read my review here.

(Affiliate links included.)

About the Author

Sara B. Larson is the author of the acclaimed YA fantasy DEFY trilogy (DEFY, IGNITE, and ENDURE) and the DARK BREAKS THE DAWN duology (DARK BREAKS THE DAWN and BRIGHT BURNS THE NIGHT). She can’t remember a time when she didn’t write books—although she now uses a computer instead of a Little Mermaid notebook. Sara lives in Utah with her husband, their four children, and their Maltese, Loki. She writes in brief snippets throughout the day and the quiet hours when most people are sleeping. Her husband claims she should have a degree in “the art of multitasking.” When she’s not mothering or writing, you can often find her at the gym repenting for her sugar addiction.


Tour Schedule

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Tour-Wide Giveaway

- 5 Winners will receive a Copy of WARRIORS OF WING AND FLAME by Sara B. Larson
- Giveaway is open to International. | Must be 13+ to Enter | Ends November 9, 2020

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What did you like about the interview? Have you read the first book?

A fantastic start to a delightful series... The Lady and the Highwayman by Sarah M. Eden (Review & #Giveaway) #ProperRomance @ProperRomance @ShadowMountn

I'm reviewing this in preparation for book two's release next week
and also have a signed copy I'm giving away. Find both below...

The Lady and the Highwayman
(Proper Romance Victorian #1)
By Sarah M. Eden
Adult Historical Romance
Paperback, Audiobook & ebook, 384 Pages
September 3, 2019 by Shadow Mountain


Elizabeth Black is the headmistress of a girls school in 1865s Victorian London. She is also a well-respected author of silver-fork novels, stories written both for and about the upper-class ladies of Victorian society. But by night, she writes very different kinds of stories--the Penny Dreadfuls that are all the rage among the working-class men. Under the pseudonym Charles King, Elizabeth has written about dashing heroes fighting supernatural threats, intelligent detectives solving grisly murders, and dangerous outlaws romancing helpless women. They contain all the adventure and mystery that her real life lacks.
Fletcher Walker began life as a street urchin, but is now the most successful author in the Penny Dreadful market, that is until Charles King started taking all of his readers. No one knows who King is, including Fletcher s fellow members of the Dread Penny Society, a fraternity of  authors dedicated to secretly fighting for the social and political causes of their working-class readers. The group knows King could be an asset with his obvious monetary success, or he could be the group s undoing as King s readership continues to cut into their profits.
Determined to find the elusive Mr. King, Fletcher approaches Miss Black. As a fellow-author, she is well-known among the high-class writers; perhaps she could be persuaded to make some inquiries as to Mr. King s whereabouts? Elizabeth agrees to help Fletcher, if only to insure her secret identity is never discovered. What neither author anticipated was the instant attraction, even though their social positions dictate the impossibility of a relationship.
For the first time Elizabeth experiences the thrill of a cat-and-mouse adventure reminiscent of one of her own novels as she tries to throw Fletcher off her scent. But the more time they spend together, the more she loses her heart. Its upper-class against working-class, author against author where readers, reputations, and romance are all on the line.

(Affiliate links included.)

My Review

THE LADY AND THE HIGHWAYMAN is a story full of intrigue, humor, and romance. There are two other stories that parallel the main one called Penny Dreadfuls that definitely add a unique twist. The characters are relatable and fantastically drawn and the story is engaging from start to finish. Highly recommended to fans of the genre!

This story was so much fun! It was exactly what I needed and brought out all the feels. I loved the characters! The dialogue and interactions between Fletcher and Elizabeth were entertaining, to say the least. I loved, loved how Elizabeth kept escaping her tag and confusing Fletcher. I loved the chemistry between them and the realistic concern for their stations and the impact of their choices. This isn't one of those books where everything miraculously turns out or that ties up too prettily. Although, it still does tie up perfectly. The scene towards the end with Elizabeth and a group of gentleman was one of my favorite parts. I could have cheered.

I also found the whole idea of two penny dreadful stories being told alongside the main story to be marvelously implemented and also a creative twist that I was just amazed by. These short stories were also very entertaining. It takes a lot to pull something like this off and the author did it fabulously!

In the end, was it what I wished for? I thoroughly enjoyed reading this. Every. Single. Minute. A story that is pure enjoyment. I'm looking forward to reading more about the men and woman revolving around the Penny Dreadful Society.

Content: Clean
Source: I received a complimentary copy from the publisher, but also purchased a copy, which did not require a positive review. All opinions are my own.

Other Books in the Series

The Gentleman and the Thief
(Proper Romance Victorian #2)
By Sarah M. Eden
Adult Historical Romance
Paperback & ebook, 368 Pages
November 3rd 2020 by Shadow Mountain


A gentleman scribes penny dreadful novels by night and falls in love with a woman who is a music teacher by day—and a thief at night.


From the moment Hollis Darby meets Ana Newport, he's smitten. Even though he's from a wealthy, established family and she isn't, he wishes he could have a life with her by his side. But Hollis has a secret: the deep coffers that have kept his family afloat for generations are bare, so he supports himself by writing penny dreadfuls under a pseudonym. If not for the income from his novels, he would be broke.

Ana Newport also has a secret. Though she once had a place in society thanks to her father's successful business, bankruptcy and scandal reduced his fortune to nothing more than a crumbling town house. So Ana teaches music during the day, and at night she assumes the identity of the "Phantom Fox." She breaks into the homes of the wealthy to reclaim trinkets and treasures she feels were unjustly stolen from her family when they were struggling.

When Hollis's brother needs to hire a music tutor for his daughter, Hollis recommends Ana, giving him a chance to spend time with her. Ana needs the income and is eager for the opportunity to get to know the enigmatic gentleman. What neither of them expects is how difficult it will be to keep their respective secrets from each other.

When a spree of robberies rocks the city, Ana and Hollis join forces to solve the crimes, discovering that working together deepens the affection between them. After all, who better to save the day than a gentleman and a thief? 

(Affiliate links included.)

About the Author

Sarah M. Eden is a USA Today best-selling author of witty and charming historical romances, including 2019’s Foreword Reviews INDIE Awards Gold Winner for Romance, The Lady and the Highwayman, and 2020 Holt Medallion finalist, Healing Hearts. She is a two-time “Best of State” Gold Medal winner for fiction and a three-time Whitney Award winner. Combining her obsession with history and her affinity for tender love stories, Sarah loves crafting deep characters and heartfelt romances set against rich historical backdrops. She holds a bachelor’s degree in research and happily spends hours perusing the reference shelves of her local library.

Sarah is represented by Pam Howell at D4EO Literary Agency.

Other Proper Romance Books

  The Lady of the Lakes: The True Love Story of Sir Walter Scott (Historical Proper Romance #2) The Sheriffs of Savage Wells
Beauty and the Clockwork Beast Forever and Forever (Historical Proper Romance) A Lady's Favor My Fair Gentleman
Heir to Edenbrooke Lord Fenton's Folly A Heart Revealed 
(Books linked to my review or an Amazon affiliate link.)


One winner will receive a signed print copy of The Lady and the Highwayman by Sarah M. Eden (US only)

Ends November 13, 2020

Open to those who reside in the continental United States as books will be shipped from Amazon. Must be at least 13 years old to enter and have parental permission if under 18. Please ensure that you correctly enter your email (and check your junk mail folder if I'm not on your contact list) so that I have a way to contact you. You can read my giveaway policy on my policies page. Void where prohibited by law. Enter via the Rafflecopter below.

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