Tag: YA

BOOK REVIEW: Grace and Glory (The Harbinger #3) by Jennifer L. Armentrout

BOOK REVIEW: Grace and Glory (The Harbinger #3) by Jennifer L. ArmentroutGrace and Glory (The Harbinger #3)
by Jennifer L. Armentrout
Purchase on: AmazoniBooks
Book Depository
Add to: Goodreads

Synopsis:

Trinity Marrow has lost the battle and her beloved Protector. Even with both demons and Wardens on her side, Trin may not win the war against the Harbinger.

Bringing Lucifer back to the world to fight the Harbinger is probably a really, really bad idea, but they’re out of options—and the world’s ultimate fallen angel is the only being powerful enough to impact the outcome.

As Trin and Zayne form a new and more dangerous bond and Lucifer unleashes Hell on earth, the apocalypse looms and the world teeters on the end of forever. Win or lose, one thing is certain—nothing will ever be the same.

Review:

Grace and Glory was a stunning conclusion to The Harbinger Series!  With tears, laughter, friendship and love splashed across the pages, this book was such a huge win!  If you’re a fan of Jennifer L Armentrout or paranormal stories then you definitely need this series in your life!

“You can’t just be anger and hatred. That can’t be all that you are. You didn’t just start existing the moment you landed in the park. You had an entire life. You are kind and good and fair. You love. You grieve. You—”
“I am none of those things!” he roared, wings snapping out and spreading wide.

Zayne was back and alive, but not the same.  He was fallen.  So when he threatened Trinity, my heart was in my throat not knowing how this was going to be fixed.  I desperately needed Zayne and Trinity back together.  Not only did it feel as though the whole world was falling apart around them, but I desperately wanted them to get their HEA.  With obstacles along the way, and even Lucifer coming topside, this book kept me glued to the pages!

This was him. It was his skin against my palms, and it was warm, no longer cool to the touch, his breath coasting over my cheek. It was him holding me.
It was Zayne.

Zayne will forever be one of my favorite book boyfriends.  But he had so much anger and hatred when he came back.  And while I should hate him for how he treated Trinity, there’s a huge but.  Even while Zayne didn’t seem like himself, their physical need for each other was still there.  Some of the scenes may have felt wrongish, since he was threatening to kill her lol, BUT they were sooooo scorching hot *fans face*.  Zayne and Trinity had this love hate thing going on and I have to admit I loved every minute of it.

“You are all I ever wanted, even before I knew what I wanted. It was you. It was always you,” he whispered, voice raw.

The amount of sacrifice and risks they took blew my mind.  We watched as Trinity had to have faith in herself and the love she had with Zayne, while she fought for them and the world.  She was truly a heroine you could look up to and respect.  And Zayne, he fell, it seemed like the greatest of sacrifices.  I loved watching them fully embrace who they had both become.  Ultimately I kept hoping that their love was powerful enough to conquer all.  We all know how much Zayne suffered, even back in The Dark Elements Series.  So I had tears at times because I just wanted them back together and happy.

Slowly, I lifted my head to Roth. I’d never been more disappointed in my life.
“They don’t get out much,” he said with a shrug.
“Kittens?” I whispered. “And a baby dragon? Seriously? You brought kittens and a baby dragon as backup? Are they a snack for Bambi?”
The black kitten hissed at me.

Zayne and Trinity thankfully had their friends by their side too.  Layla, Roth, Bambi, Cayman and so many Wardens that wove their way into my heart.  I loved them all so much.  We even got to see a character from The Dark Elements Series, who I shouldn’t have been excited to see but I was lol.  Plus Peanut, who I adored!  And then there was Lucifer, who we weren’t supposed to like….right?!  But he cracked me up and while I wanted more time with him, Lucifer also showed us his horrifically cruel side.  It was a hard pill to swallow and left me feeling confused towards him.  So make sure you hold on, because this cast of characters will take you on a wild and crazy ride!

“So, I’m told I’m needed to save the world.”
“Yeah,” I said hoarsely.
Lucifer smiled, and I’d never seen anything so beautiful and so equally frightening before. Goose bumps broke out over my f lesh. “Then let’s raise some Hell.”

With twists I didn’t see coming, deals to be bargained, risks that seemed too great and even betrayal, I loved every minute of this story!  Grace and Glory owned every part of me!  Plus I’m so happy that there was an element left open, so there can be a spinoff down the road.  I’m keeping my fingers crossed that someday that will happen!

*I voluntarily read and reviewed an advanced copy of this book, provided by the author. All thoughts and opinions are my own.*

Other Favorite Quotes:

“You’re going to wear yourself out.” His lips ghosted across the curve of my jaw, sending a fairly inappropriate shiver dancing over my skin . “And then what, little nephilim? No grace. No daggers. It’ll just be me and you.”
“It’s always been just you and me, Zayne.”
 
 “There’s no way Roth is planning to get Lucifer topside. That would make no sense, right?” Zayne looked at me, and I shrunk as far as I could into the cushion. “Because wouldn’t that jump-start the biblical apocalypse and cause us to have even more problems to deal with?”
“Weeelll,” I repeated. “We’re sort of hoping that God will overlook his presence since we’re trying to save mankind and Heaven, and you know.”
“No. I do not know.” Zayne stared at me.
 
“I am not worthy of you.”
“That’s the farthest thing from the truth.”
“It’s not. You’re brave and strong. Fearless. You’re intelligent, kind and loyal.” His large hands slid to my hips. “You’re breathtaking.” He kissed my neck , and I shuddered. “I want you, now and always.”
 
“So, Lucifer did come topside, and good news is he did agree to help. Was actually pretty enthusiastic about it.”
There was a pause and then Nicolai said, “Okay?”
“But we, uh…” My entire body and brain cringed. “We sort of lost Lucifer.”
 
Zayne’s gaze met mine when I looked up. He nodded as he said, “Agreed. We need to go at him fast and hard.”
“That sounds dirty, Stony,” Roth purred.
I shook my head at the phone.
Reading Order & Links:
Amazon (click on covers), iBooks (click on titles) & Book Depository (click on book #)

Storm and Fury #1
Reviews:

Jen
 
Rage and Ruin   #2
Reviews:

Jen

Grace and Glory #3
Reviews:

Jen

BOOK REVIEW: The Best Lies by Sarah Lyu

BOOK REVIEW: The Best Lies by Sarah LyuThe Best Lies by Sarah Lyu
Purchase on: AmazoniBooks
Book Depository
Add to: Goodreads

Synopsis:

Remy Tsai used to know how her story would turn out. But now, she doesn’t even know what tomorrow will look like.

She was happy once. Remy had her boyfriend Jack, and Elise, her best friend—her soulmate—who understood her better than anyone else in the world.

But now Jack is dead, shot through the chest—

And it was Elise who pulled the trigger.

Was it self-defense? Or something deeper, darker than anything Remy could have imagined? As the police investigate, Remy does the same, sifting through her own memories, looking for a scrap of truth that could save the friendship that means everything to her.

Told in alternating timelines, Thelma and Louise meets Gone Girl in this twisted psychological thriller about the dark side of obsessive friendship.

We were a forest fire, wild and full of rage. We were a galaxy unto ourselves, a million stars blazing and bright. Everything was possible then.

The Best Lies by Sarah Lyu is another YA thriller that is full of potential but fails to execute on its premise. What could have been a twisty and dark story about toxic female friendships and how that can boil over into terrible consequences is more bark than bite. I almost DNF’d at 50%, when the pace of the book was still moving at an almost glacial speed, but wanted to see it to the end. The end picked up a little bit, but it couldn’t make up for the slow pace and repetitive scenes and conversations that plague this book.

I know she’s here somewhere. I can feel that invisible push and pull whenever she’s near, like she is a star and I am a captured object.

The Best Lies follows Remy Tsai’s life over a couple of months. The book jumps back in forth between the night her boyfriend, Jack, is killed and the beginning of her friendship with Elise. Elise meets Remy outside of a school dance right after Remy is dumped by her now-college boyfriend. They quickly bond over their screwed up family lives: both girls are dealing with a lot of heavy and serious issues at home and learn to lean on each other to deal with it.

At the heart of every good lie is the truth, that’s what Elise told me once. The best lies are at least half-true she said.

Elise is nothing like Remy. She is obsessed with justice for those who can’t fight for themselves, she is extremely loyal to those she deems is worthy of her loyalty and she impulsive and rash. Once she becomes fixated on something, she can’t let it go. Remy is more quiet and reserved, living in the shadow of her much more popular and accomplished older brother. She is kind of drifting through life, with a small social circle that she’s not really attached to. Elise and Remy are opposites attracting and a strong bond is quickly formed.

“What we have is real,” she repeated. “No one else has what we have. No one will ever love you like I do.”

However, the bond between Remy and Elise begins to fray. Remy is not comfortable with some of Elise’s decisions, especially related to her vigilantism. In a chance meeting after Elise abandons her at party, Elise meets Jack. Jack is her light in a dark world. He’s funny and caring and sees her for who she really is. Before long, Remy is spending more time with Jack and less with Elise. This is the main catalyst for many of the problems and crescendos up until the night he is killed.

I told myself I was running toward him and not away from her, but maybe that was just a convenient lie.

As I said before, this story had a lot of potential. The mini recap I wrote above shows how dark and twisted this story is and I liked the ideas presented by Lyu. However, I felt it fell very flat in execution. First off, it’s so repetitive. So many scenes and conversations are almost identical that I often wondered if my Kindle glitched and I was reading something I already had. Remy and Elise seem to have the same arguments over and over. They also are ALWAYS crying. I’m pretty sure one of them does not go more than five pages without being described as crying or sobbing or tearing up. I get there are a lot emotions happening, but it was too much. If there had been variety to the story, as well as better pacing with these scenes, I could have been more forgiving.

Overall, I’m in the middle about this book. I liked aspects of it. The subject of a toxic and dependent female relationship was new and different from a lot of other YA thrillers. I liked how Remy’s family life issues were handled and resolved. I really liked Jack and Remy and Jack’s relationship. Elise was an interesting character, who while flawed, kept my attention. However, I still can’t get over the pacing, the repetitiveness and the minimal twists in a thriller. 3/5 stars.

We believed our wounds made us special. We believed what didn’t kill you made you stronger. We believed our tragedies were romantic.

CW: Death/murder, physical abuse, verbal abuse, manipulation, cheating, lying

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