4 Hopeful Things about Kira Brady’s “Hearts of Shadow”

Hearts of Shadow

Deadglass Book 2

by Kira Brady

Nikki’s Rating: 4 out of 10

Summary:  Grace Mercer must fight wraiths every day now that the world has plummeted into chaos due to the Unraveling. Caught in the middle of the war between the Kivati shapeshifters and the Drekar, dragon shifters, Grace is simply trying to survive like all other humans but Leif Asgard is convinced she is more than that. As Leif and Grace hunt for answers to save the world, something ancient begins to hunt them and the only way to save each other is to embrace the love they’ve been desperately denying.

4 Hopeful Things about Kira Brady’s “Hearts of Shadow”

(May Contain Spoilers)

1. Grace Mercer

Grace reminds me so much of Stieg Larsson’s Lisbeth Salander in the Millennium series. Both women are abrasive and downright rude but love deeply and are extremely loyal. Like Lisbeth, Grace kicks some major ass and takes shit from nobody.

2. The Lore

While novels featuring supernaturals are nothing new, I appreciate Kira Brandy bringing different elements into her universe. In “Hearts of Shadow,” the incorporation of runes to protect and actually use in battle was very interesting. And the Deadglass series features dragon-shifters, which is totally awesome!

3. Sweltering

Things heat up in “Hearts of Shadow” as Grace and Leif give in to their desires.

4. Hearts of Chaos

While Grace and Leif got their happily-ever-after, their world is in deep shit, Tiamat has awoken. The Deadglass series continues in Kira Brady’s “Hearts of Chaos.”

What are your favorite things about “Hearts of Shadow”?


As always, thank you for reading. I would love to hear from you so feel free to contact me or comment below. If you would like to support this blog and/or my paintings please become my patron.

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8 Triumphant Things about J.K. Rowling’s “The Tales of Beedle the Bard”

The Tales of Beedle the Bard

by J.K. Rowling

Nikki’s Rating: 8 out of 10

Summary: The Tales of Beedle the Bard features five classic fairy tales beloved by wizards for years and can now be enjoyed by Muggles everywhere. Translated from the Ancient Runes by Hermione Granger and commentary provided by Albus Dumbledore, these tales of love and adventure will bring you much joy and delight.

8 Triumphant Things about J.K. Rowling’s “The Tales of Beedle the Bard”

(May Contain Spoilers)

1. Wizarding World

Beginning with the Harry Potter series, J.K. Rowling’s Wizarding World is utterly fantastic and any chance to spend even a few minutes there is time well spent.

2. Immersion

“Tales of Beedle the Bard” does an excellent job of immersing us into the Wizarding World with commentary by Albus Dumbledore and an Introduction and footnotes provided by J.K. Rowling to help clarify things for Muggle readers.

3. Fairy Tales

Common in all cultures, fairy tales are always enchanting and “The Tales of Beedle the Bard” are no different. With an emphasis on good overcoming evil, these folktales encourage young wizards to do what is right and to help them understand that having magic doesn’t make your problems go away.

4. Fun

As with other collections of fairy tales, “Tales of Beedle the Bard” is a quick and fun read and utterly amusing with the wit of Albus Dumbledore.

5. Beautiful

As a hardback, light blue book decorated with silver stars, “The Tales of Beedle the Bard” is a visually stunning book. But the beauty doesn’t end there. Inside, many pages feature simple elegant drawings and each page is decorated with roses.

6. The Fountain of Fair Fortune

My favorite of the tales, “The Fountain of Fair Fortune’ features 3 witches who take their fate into their own hands, graciously work together and solve their problems without magical intervention.

7. Lumos

With every sale of “Tales of Beedle the Bard,” Scholastic donates to Lumos, an international nonprofit organization that is working to end the institutionalization of children.

8. Fantastic Beasts & Where to Find Them

If you need another book outside the Harry Potter series to get your Wizarding World fix, try “Fantastic Beasts & Where to Find Them” or “Quidditch Through the Ages.”

What are your favorite things about “Tales of Beedle the Bard”?


As always, thank you for reading. I would love to hear from you so feel free to contact me or comment below. If you would like to support this blog and/or my paintings please become my patron.

Be Authentic. Be Unique. Be You.

8 Quick-witted Things about J.K. Rowling’s “Quidditch Through the Ages”

Quidditch Through the Ages

by J.K. Rowling

Nikki’s Rating: 8 out of 10

Summary: Kennilworthy Whisp takes us through the interesting and sometimes violent history of Quidditch. With an introduction by Albus Dumbledore, this book gives a thorough look at ancient broom games and how they have evolved into the beloved wizarding sport we all love today, Quidditch!

8 Quick-witted Things about J.K. Rowling’s “Quidditch Through the Ages”

(May Contain Spoilers)

1. J.K. Rowling’s Wizarding World

The Wizarding World of J.K. Rowling is so imaginative and impressive that it is no surprise that millions of us wish we lived there! “Quidditch Through the Ages” is a quick read but any small glimpse into this Wizarding World is well worth it.

2. The Immersion

J.K. Rowling made this book so immersive with its introduction by Dumbledore, “Hogwarts Library” stamp, and about the author, Kennilworthy Whisp. “Quidditch Through the Ages” truly seems to have come straight from the Wizarding World and into our Muggle hands.

3. Entertaining

“Quidditch Through the Ages” is truly entertaining with its whimsical witty humor and absurdities that will delight children and adults alike.

4. Quidditch

While sports have never been all that exciting to me, Quidditch is most intriguing perhaps because it is a Wizarding game. It was enjoyable to get the backstory that Rowling imagined for her fictional sport.

5. The Golden Snidget

Perhaps the best part of “Quidditch Through the Ages” is the small drawing of the adorable chubby Golden Snidget, I now want one!

6. Comic Relief Fund

Sales of “Quidditch Through the Ages” goes to the Comic Relief Fund, which provides help to at-risk children and young people in the UK and internationally.

7. Lumos Fund

Revenue from “Quidditch Through the Ages” also goes to Lumos, a charity focused on ending the institutionalization of children.

8. The Tales of Beedle the Bard

Thankfully there are other books to immerse ourselves into J.K. Rowling’s Wizarding World, other than the Harry Potter series, “The Tales of Beedle the Bard” and “Fantastic Beasts & Where to Find Them.”

What are your favorite things about “Quidditch Through the Ages”?


As always, thank you for reading. I would love to hear from you so feel free to contact me or comment below. If you would like to support this blog and/or my paintings please become my patron.

Be Authentic. Be Unique. Be You.

6 Tender Things about Kate Cross’s “Touch of Steel"

Touch of Steel

Clockwork Agents Book 2

by Kate Cross

Nikki’s Rating: 6 out of 10

Summary:  Gravely injured while fighting Howard, the murderer of her beloved brother, Claire Brooks falls into the hands of the Wardens of the Realm. As an agent for the Company, she is now at the mercy of her enemies and chooses to defect in order to reach her goal. Teamed up with Warden Alastair Payne, they hunt Howard while pretending to be engaged. An irresistible attraction develops between Alastair and Claire and they must decide if they are truly allies or enemies.

6 Tender Things about Kate Cross’s “Touch of Steel”

(May Contain Spoilers)

1. Claire

A deadly agent who loves fiercely and loyally as evident in the way she hunts the murderer of her beloved brother.

2. Friendship

Kate Cross created characters that show friendship at its best! Without knowing Claire, Arden and Luke stand beside Alastair’s decision to include Claire in the Wardens because they trust and love Alastair, no further proof was needed.

3. Alastair

While Alastair has many faults, including coveting his best friend’s wife and being a stubborn ass, he is a good man. Publicly defending and proclaiming his love for Claire redeemed him in many ways.

4. The Heat

Erotic scenes between Alastair and Claire were hot and steamy.

5. Happily-Ever-After

“Touch of Steel” was quite the rollercoaster and while it turns out Claire’s brother was a huge dick, Claire at least got her happily-ever-after with Alastair as they continue fighting as Wardens of the Realm.

6. Breath of Iron

The Clockwork Agent series continues in Kate Cross’s next steampunk novel “Breath of Iron.”

What are your favorite things about “Touch of Steel”?


As always, thank you for reading. I would love to hear from you so feel free to contact me or comment below. If you would like to support this blog and/or my paintings please become my patron.

Be Authentic. Be Unique. Be You.

7 Homely Things about Kate Cross’s “Heart of Brass”

Heart of Brass

Clockwork Agents Book 1

by Kate Cross

Nikki’s Rating: 7 out of 10

Summary:  After 7 years of hoping that he was still alive, Arden Grey sees her husband with her own eyes, as he tries to kill her. Luke remembers nothing of their love or anything before he was Five, an agent for the Company. Working for the Wardens, the Company’s sworn enemy, Arden must find a way to get Luke to remember her and their life or risk them having to say goodbye forever.

7 Homely Things about Kate Cross’s “Heart of Brass”

(May Contain Spoilers)

1. Arden Grey

Incredibly smart, Arden is not only employed as a woman but is an inventor. This woman has no problems telling the status quo to f-off and to take matters in her own hands. Even with her husband back in her life, she does not allow him to tell her what she can or cannot do.

2. Estranged

“Heart of Brass” had the unique premise of the main hero and heroine already being married, just estranged.

3. Characters

Character development was done well and realistic that both Arden and Luke would be different after 7 years. It was a pleasure watching them fall in love and find their way back to each other again while still being who they are.

4. Marriage

Kate Cross gives an honest view of marriage, it is never perfect and entails forgiveness and a lot of compromises.

5. Steampunk

The Clockwork Agents series takes place in 1898 London with added steampunk elements creating a vibrant, interesting setting.

6. Happy Ending

“Heart of Brass” was an overall imaginative and riveting story that came to a touching, happy conclusion.

7. Touch of Steel

Thankfully Kate Cross’s steampunk Clockwork Agents series continues in “Touch of Steel.”

What are your favorite things about “Heart of Brass”?


As always, thank you for reading. I would love to hear from you so feel free to contact me or comment below. If you would like to support this blog and/or my paintings please become my patron.

Be Authentic. Be Unique. Be You.

7 Lovely Things about Christine Feehan’s “Lair of the Lion”

“Lair of the Lion”

by Christine Feehan

Nikki’s Rating: 7 out of 10

Summary: In a desperate attempt to save her brother’s life, Isabella Vernaducci agrees to marry Nicolai DeMarco. But Don DeMarco is not all that he seems. Cursed to turn into a rageful beast, DeMarco is fated to kill the one he loves and therefore keeps everyone away. But beautiful Isabella sneaks into his heart. Will their love be enough to break the curse or will Isabella pay the ultimate price?


7 Lovely Things about Christine Feehan’s “Lair of the Lion”

May contain Spoilers

1. Isabella

Isabella Vernaducci is such a lovable heroine. She is headstrong, courageous, sassy, resourceful, and never afraid to speak her mind. Isabella’s love of life is contagious and a great balance to Nicolai’s doom-and-gloom outlook.

2. Nicolai

While Nicolai is rather bleak, grumpy, and rageful at times, he is so gentle with Isabella and wants nothing more than to protect her. He takes the time to listen to her and consider her feelings even when he doesn’t agree with her. More gentleman than a beast.

3. Lions

Nicolai can commune and direct lions to do his bidding, totally awesome! He also shapeshifts into one.

4. The Writing

Christine Feehan has a pleasant writing style. The story moves at a good pace, she provides enough description for the reader to understand the scenery without wasting time being overly descriptive. Characters were relatable and the chemistry between Nicolai and Isabella was spot on!

5. Family

One of my favorite things about all the characters, especially Isabella, was their fierce loyalty to family. Isabella would have happily given her life in place of her brother’s.

6. Passion

The romance between Nicolai and Isabella is super sizzling hot with lots of passion!

7. Happily Ever After

Thankfully, “Lair of the Lion” ends happily. I was getting a bit nervous because it isn’t till like the last page before everything gets resolved. Isabella and Nicolai get their much deserved happily ever after!

What are your favorite things about Christine Feehan’s “Lair of the Lion”?


Be Authentic. Be Unique. Be You.

As always, thank you for reading. I would love to hear from you so feel free to contact me or comment below. And if you would like to support this blog and/or my paintings please become my patron.

10 Fantastical Things about Stephanie Garber’s “Finale”

“Finale” Caraval Book 3

by Stephanie Garber

Nikki’s Rating: 10 out of 10

Summary: They are all playing a very dangerous game and not even Legend knows the ending. The Fates, immortal beings with supernatural powers, have been released from the Deck of Destiny and are staging the way to take over Valedna. Sisters Scarlett and Tella are dragged further and further into the lives of the immortals as they realize that their mother’s disappearance is connected to the Deck of Destiny. But the girls are not just trying to save their lives but also their hearts. Scarlett finds herself torn between Julian, the boy she fell in love with, and Nicolas, her once betrothed. While Tella is being pursued by two powerful immortals, both who have already deceived her and broken her heart. Regardless, Scarlett and Tella must find a way to destroy the Fates once and for all or risk losing everything.


10 Fantastical Things About Stephanie Garber’s “Finale”

(May Contain Spoilers)

1. The Magic

Stephanie Garber has an amazing, fantastical imagination and she lets it run wild in her Caraval series. Fantasy dresses and desserts, hidden places unlocked by blood, magical items that can teleport you or change appearance, places that time runs faster/slower. It is all just so magical!

2. Descriptions

“The intoxicating scents of honeycomb castles, cinnamon bark pies, carmelite clusters, and peach shine floated through Tell’s cracked window when she woke, filling the tiny apartment with sugar and dreams” (Finale p.21) That tantalizing sentence is a prime example of Stephanie Garber’s exceptional descriptives.

3. Twists and Turns

As with “Caraval” and “Legendary”, Stephanie Garber kept me on my toes throughout “FInale”! Anything could be an illusion or a dream. You would be constantly questioning characters motivations and you could never ever truly trust any of them.

4. Characters

Specifically, Scarlett and Tella are very lovable. Yes, Legend, Jacks, and Julian are all attractive, seductive, and irresitable but it is the female protagonists that really shine in the Caraval series. Both Scarlett and Tella are strong, loving, forgiving, sassy, independent and their own heroes while still making mistakes and being silly.

5. Storyline

Stephanie Garber created a magical land with a compelling story that I could not put down. All 3 books in the Caraval series had slightly different focuses but they all tied in seamlessly with each other and made for an fascinating story arc.

6. The Fates

Immortals with supernatural powers are nothing new but Stephanie Garber included an interesting element of having them trapped in a Deck of Destiny, a deck of cards in the Caraval universe that is similar to out Tarot. Also, when a Fate gives up their immortality for love and eventually dies, their magic creates a magical item.

7. Fantasy Dresses

Her Majesty’s Gown, a Fated object, a gown that changes according to the wearer’s mood (or the dresses), a magical dress that I wish I had! Every gown Stephanie Garber describes in the Caraval series I want. “Finale” even features a gown covered in real butterflies!

8. Romance

As always, I’m a sucker for romance and I appreciate that both Scarlett and Tella have found their loves.

9. Legend

By far one the most intriguing fictional characters I’ve come across. While it was a rollercoaster in “Legendary” trying to figure out if Dante was really Legend or not, in “Finale” it was a rollercoaster trying to determine if he was a deceptive, selfish scoundrel, or a lost soul in need of saving who actually deserved Tella’s love. Not gonna lie that regardless of all he has done, I’m a huge fan and so glad that he and Tella ended up together.

10. More???

While “Finale” was a very satisfying conclusion of Tella and Scarlett’s story, I still want more from Caraval! I would love to hear more about the Fates and their backstories, I want to know if Scarlett and Tella lived happily-ever-after, etc. While I have no idea if Stephanie Garber has any intentions of writing more about the Caraval characters, there is mention in “Finale” of Tella returning to the Vanished Market in the future. I hope we get to revisit the Caraval universe again very soon!

What are your favorite things about Stephanie Garber’s “Finale”?


Be Authentic. Be Unique. Be You.

As always, thank you for reading. I would love to hear from you so feel free to contact me or comment below. And if you would like to support this blog and/or my paintings please become my patron.