Book Review: The Ippos King by Grace Raven

The Ippos King
Series: Wraith Kings #3
Author: Grace Raven

Published: October 6, 2020
437 Pages

Reviewed By: Jessica
Dates Read: September 11- October 25, 2022
Jessica’s Rating: 4 stars

Book Description:

The demonic horde that threatened to devour the world has been defeated, but at great cost.

Plagued by guilt and nightmares, Serovek Pangion sets out to deliver the soulless body of the monk Megiddo to the heretical Jeden Order for safekeeping. Accompanying him is sha-Anhuset, the Kai woman he admires and desires most–a woman barely tolerant of him.

Devoted to her regent, Anhuset reluctantly agrees to act as a Kai ambassador on the trip, even though the bold margrave known as the Beladine Stallion gets under her skin like no other, and Anhuset fears he’ll worm his way into her armored heart as well.

But guilt and unwelcome attraction are the least of their problems. The demons thought vanquished are stirring again, and a warlord with blood-soaked ambition turns a journey of compassion into a fight for survival. When the Beladine king brands Serovek a traitor, Anhuset must choose between sacrificing the life of a man she’s grown to love and abandoning lifelong fealty to the Kai people.

A tale of loyalty and acceptance.

Jessica’s Review:

The tale that began with Brishen and Ildiko’s marriage continues and this time we get my favorite would-be couple’s story: Serovek and Anhuset.  I have adored those two much more than Brishen and Ildiko and was ready for their turn! As with Radiance, Raven writes a slow burner, almost to the point where it was painful! This was in a good way as I kept reading and cheering for Serovek and Anuset to finally get together.  They are both so stubborn and their chemistry is just.. on point!  Their banter is entertaining and brings a laugh then frustration.. I mean come on and just finally get together! You both know it will happen…

The last quarter of the novel we get some must read action that I really enjoyed!  It brought some much-needed excitement to this otherwise slow burner. Raven’s novels are all about the characters and their story, so for those who enjoy fast moving action, you might struggle through it.  If you love these characters then you will love these novels. 

Purchase Links:
Amazon US
Amazon UK

Audiobook Review: Layla by Colleen Hoover

Layla
Author: Colleen Hoover

Narrator: Brian Pallino
Published: December 8, 2020
Audiobook: 8 hours 10 minutes

Reviewed By: Jessica
Dates Listened To: November 1-4, 2022
Jessica’s Rating: 3.5 stars

Book Description:

When Leeds meets Layla, he’s convinced he’ll spend the rest of his life with her—until an unexpected attack leaves Layla fighting for her life. After weeks in the hospital, Layla recovers physically, but the emotional and mental scarring has altered the woman Leeds fell in love with. In order to put their relationship back on track, Leeds whisks Layla away to the bed-and-breakfast where they first met. Once they arrive, Layla’s behavior takes a bizarre turn. And that’s just one of many inexplicable occurrences.

Feeling distant from Layla, Leeds soon finds solace in Willow—another guest of the B&B with whom he forms a connection through their shared concerns. As his curiosity for Willow grows, his decision to help her find answers puts him in direct conflict with Layla’s well-being. Leeds soon realizes he has to make a choice because he can’t help both of them. But if he makes the wrong choice, it could be detrimental for all of them.

Jessica’s Review:

I loved Verity when I read it earlier this year, and Layla is my second CoHo novel.  These are both atypical of what she usually writes which is romance. We know I am not a huge romance reader, so of course I started with her ‘different’ novels to listen to first.  And well…. Layla…. It ended up not really being for me.  I had heard it was a paranormal thriller and yes, there is paranormal, but not so much a thriller. It had suspense to it though! The book description tells the reader one thing, but then the novel goes in a very much different direction than what you go into thinking. 

Leeds is our sole narrator and well… Leeds is not really likable and the further into the novel I went, the less I liked him, his choices, and actions.  I can’t say much other than that because it would involve spoilers and the direction of the novel.  I did enjoy the beginning with how Leeds and Layla met.

Personally, for me the novel has 2.5 stars as it was not for me, but I gave it an extra star for the writing: CoHo definitely knew where she was going and had to have it all planned out to get to that ending!  We get several twists and I did not see what was coming as I was listening to it!

The narrator, Brian Pallino did a fantastic job with his narration and portrayal of Leeds.  He is a narrator I would listen to again.  Sadly, he passed away just over two years ago.

I know the rest of CoHo’s novels are romance, and I will give some of her others a try at some point. She is just everywhere these days with a new novel out and it just feels like an oversaturation: Everywhere you look there she is!

Purchase Links:
Amazon US
Amazon UK

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Book Review: Leona: The Die is Cast by Jenny Rogneby

Leona: The Die is Cast
Series: Leona #1

Author:
Jenny Rogneby

Published: July 17, 2014
464 Pages

Reviewed By: Kim
Kim’s Rating: 3 stars

Book Description:

Naked and bloody, a seven-year-old girl walks into a bank in central Stockholm in broad daylight and gets away with millions. Leona Lindberg of Stockholm’s Violent Crimes Division agrees to work on the case. With a long, distinguished history in the police force, she seems the perfect choice. But Leona is grappling with deep issues of her own–a gambling addiction, a strained marriage–that could jeopardize the investigation. As she struggles to keep the volatile pieces of her life under control, the line between right and wrong becomes increasingly unclear–and even irrelevant.

This is a hard-boiled crime novel, filled with unexpected twists and turns, featuring an unusual heroine. Leona makes for gripping reading while challenging feminine norms and posing questions about what lies behind the choices we make.

Kim’s Review:

I’m not sure I’ve ever read a character that I disliked more than Leona Lindberg. Unfortunately, part of the reason that I dislike her is buried in spoilers, so I can’t tell you! She was cold and lifeless and selfish! And the problem is that most of the story is told from her perspective! I’m all about the consequences of someone’s actions, but all Leona did was whine about hers! And she even did that ridiculous justification act where she convinces herself that her family and kids are just too good for her and that’s why she’s free to abandon them! Give me a break.

As for the story:It was ok. The suspense lasted maybe the first quarter, but then everything began unfolding and that took up the rest of the book. If Leona wasn’t so insufferable, I might have enjoyed it more. It did end on a cliffhanger, so be aware if you decide to read it. I’ll admit that I kinda sorta want to keep reading the series, just to see what happens; but then I’ll also admit that I just don’t care. So I kinda enjoyed it, kinda didn’t. Ta-da!

Purchase Links:
Amazon US
Amazon UK

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