Bone And Shadow |Book Review

Surrounded by enemies, the once-great nation of Ravka has been torn in two by the Shadow Fold, a swath of near impenetrable darkness crawling with monsters who feast on human flesh. Now its fate may rest on the shoulders of one lonely refugee.

Alina Starkov has never been good at anything. But when her regiment is attacked on the Fold and her best friend is brutally injured, Alina reveals a dormant power that saves his life—a power that could be the key to setting her war-ravaged country free. Wrenched from everything she knows, Alina is whisked away to the royal court to be trained as a member of the Grisha, the magical elite led by the mysterious Darkling.
Yet nothing in this lavish world is what it seems. With darkness looming and an entire kingdom depending on her untamed power, Alina will have to confront the secrets of the Grisha…and the secrets of her heart.

I have heard so much about The Grisha Trilogy, and I’m going to admit the cover art drew me in. So I finished reading the first book of the trilogy Bone And Shadow. Here is my review of the first book!

Plot ***
Writing ****
Cover *****
Characters *****
Enjoyment ****
Pacing *****
Total star rating = 4*

PLOT

The Plot I felt was alright, I could see where the plot was going a mile ahead. It was very predictable. I wanted to see more of the war that was going on, more battle scenes etc. However, I think the first book was mostly for character development, and the main character Alina growing into herself, and her new role as a Grisha. So that is the main reason I gave Plot a 3* rating.

WRITING

Writing I gave the author a 4* rating. I think it was well written, and the scene’s and characters were described in a way that I could picture it in my head. I love when an author writes in a way that I can let my imagination take over and really get lost in the imagery, but also allow some room for me to create. I didn’t find many grammatical errors or have trouble with wording. Anything you had a question about name wise you could look up at the front of the book as well as a map if you got lost. So all in all the writing was fantastic.

COVER

The cover was what drew me into this series, to begin with! I love the cover art, it is simple but striking. The color choices for me were perfect. Black and Red just scream war and violence and interest. The image wasn’t too busy it was simple but well thought out.  Hence why I gave the cover of this book a 5* Rating.

CHARACTERS

The characters also received a 5* rating. I loved the characters, even though you had many cliche characters. For example, the BFF your secretly in love with, The sexy bad guy the MC stupidly falls for, the stuck up chick who gets on your nerves etc. However, the author did a good job at giving them individual personalities and making you fall in love with them. They are also written in a way that is relatable you really can feel for the characters and what they are going through.

ENJOYMENT

Overall I enjoyed this book greatly. It was a nice read by the pool and get a tan kind of book. lol Which is exactly what I did! I rated enjoyment a 4* simply because although I did enjoy it tremendously I could put it down. It didn’t overwhelm me enough to binge read it and not be able to put it down. Sometimes I would get tired and just need to put it down for a bit and then pick it up the next day.

PACING

The Pacing for this book was right on point! 5*’s The book wasn’t too slow and dragged out, and it also wasn’t too fast paced to where you got confused as to how you got to the scene. I think it was a good pacing of character development for this book. The first to a trilogy and it was mostly about character development, less about the actual plot. Which is fine for the first book in a trilogy I think. That way when the author does get into the nitty gritty dirty stuff we are well versed on the characters and why they make decisions the way they do etc.

 

 

 

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How Romance/Erotica Novels Get It Wrong

romance-novel Romance novels and Erotic have become such a popular hit in our society today. There is a lot of controversy and opinions roaming around out there.

So when reading this article please keep this in mind. THIS IS MY OPINION!  sigh.. now that I got that disclaimer put out there let us begin with the ranting.

Romance novels and Erotic are lies. I can understand wanting to get away into a world of fantasy. Heck! Fantasy and fiction novels are my favorite genres! However, I know that they are fiction and unrealistic. They are simply an amazing creation from a brilliant authors imagination.

When we jump into the world of Romance and Erotic we hit a bit more in the ‘realistic’ realm. At least most woman who read them wish that they could be their reality.  When woman read these books they search for a love they don’t have or a sex life they wish they had.

However, the truth is do you really want a fake love like that?

Personally, I have no interest in Romance novels or Erotica. They paint a very unrealistic and unattainable image of love and sex. Love and sex are not perfect, they have flaws, and many of these books portray them as some epic fantasy. Many women have become unsatisfied with their husbands due to the image these books portray. They plant seeds in young readers of what love and sex should be about.

I am 8 1/5 months pregnant with me and my husbands first baby, who happens to be a beautiful little girl. I know and my husband knows that we would never want Marie to read a Romance/Erotica. Now I’m not talking about stories like the notebook people. I’m talking about romance/erotica, just want to get that out there.

I don’t want my daughter to grow up and read these books and think oh so that is what I should expect about love and sex. No! The view of love and sex in society is so disoriented and distorted. Making them seem like an object like they are nothing. Come on people! We know very well that love and sex play a vital role in our lives, and can both be an amazing thing and also be the most damaging.

No matter how hard you may try to disconnect love and sex, or emotions and sex it’s impossible! There will always be a tiny piece of you that becomes attached to the person you have sex with. Sex and love are an intimate thing whether you want it to be or not.

Not only that but not everyone has this epic fantasy of being beaten up and a dirty fantasy. Some of us just want to be treated with respect and loved. It is about being connected to the other person in a way that words can’t describe. Love and sex are meant to draw two people (married..yes I said it..gasp!) closer together. It is a connection that binds them together and makes their relationship stronger.

So for me, romance/erotica get it wrong. That said this genre is just not for me. If you enjoy romance/erotica than go for it! Just realize it’s fiction, and don’t hold it against your partner if they don’t meet that expectation. Romance/Erotica love and sex is not the norm, it is fantasy.

P.S I do not judge anyone, nor do I look down on anyone who reads erotica books, or has different views or opinions than I do.

 

The Third Step | Book Review

 Meet Frankie, a young, disaffected amateur boxer, really more of a punching bag, a drunk and a drug addict. He is a loser at love, except for his relationship with his grandma, who, rumor has it, is a white witch. She, along with a handful of others, serve as his moral compass.
Frankie fights a lifelong struggle to find an understanding of the creator of the universe, not the poisoned caricature painted by the church and the “holy” people who seem to torment him.
His journey takes him from the East Coast down to New Orleans to face confrontations with his demons, both real and imagined. Along the way, the story is littered with tales of drug smuggling, murder, an affair with a woman who may be the devil herself, and an ultimate quest for revenge.

Frankie comes to terms with his addictions, but his search for a deeper understanding of this God entity and his need to connect with his soul could be his ultimate addiction, one that may follow him beyond the grave…


 

I felt as though I needed to post the description of the book just so you can know what to expect with this review. To be honest this book is hard to review. There are so many details so many things to cover when talking about this book. However, let’s start by showing you what I did rate this book.

Plot *****

Writing ***

Cover ***

Characters *****

Enjoyment ***

Pacing **

Total star rating = 3.5*

 

Plot

I rated the plot 5*. The plot itself and all the gritty details were fantastic! This was one of the few books where my predictions of what was going on happen next were almost never right. This book makes you doubt your intuition of what could happen. It takes you on an emotional rollercoaster. One moment you’re at one place and the next moment your completely thrown into the other direction. You end up getting reading whiplash, and you find yourself never satisfied never given what you want. At least not till you get to the end the book, and even that barely satisfies you.

Writing

This rating could very much change. For now, I will rate it a 3*. The reason I say this because of the editorial errors. There are a lot of editing errors, paragraphs that are doubled on accident, misplaced words, or just a lot of rep it ion of the same thing. However, if you can get passed that and ignore it the voice writing of this book is fantastic. This is an author that sees the world through different eyes and has written what he has seen in the world. Which somewhat saddens me, but at the same time, I am grateful.

Cover

The cover I rated 3* as well. As I have discussed in past reviews the cover is more of a personal preference rating. I rate covers half based on if I saw this on a bookshelf would I pick it up based solely on the cover with this book no I would most likely not pick this book up, for me, it is not ascetically pleasing to the eyes. However, that is not to say that the cover is perfect for this book! It shows the journey that the character goes through as well as the places he goes and sees. It is a small glimpse of his life through his eyes, his memories.

Characters

5*! The characters in this book all have their own backgrounds, stories, hardships, struggles, and life. He doesn’t just show you the main character Frankie view but also a glimpse into the life of those around him. This pulls you in gets you attached to them, so when he rips them away you feel hurt and loss. Even minor characters that may only be there briefly he shows a deep part of them so that even they have meaning. Tauthor’sors character building is breathtaking and well thought out.

Enjoyment

This rating was rough, 3*. This is not a book that will make you smile, it will not give you happy loving butterflies in your tummy. This is not a book or story to enjoy.  This is a book that will tear you apart, it will make you feel so may emotions. You will feel anger, disappointment, heartache, betrayal, fear, shame, and so many other things. So did I enjoy this book no, but it is a story that will pull you in and draw you deeper than you want to go.

Pacing

Pacing received 2*, this book tends to repeat a lot, or draw on scenes for a bit too long the only thing keeping you involved is the drama and need to know the outcome. Otherwise, this book dragged on in a lot of parts for far too long. It made it hard to get through, and I had to take many breaks. At some points, I wanted to read another book on the side, but I didn’t want to take the time this book deserved away from it. All I can say is hold on, take breaks the story and outcome are worth it.

So that is my in-depth review of The Third Step by William Lobb. It is a fantastic book, that will take you on a journey through a man’s eyes that have been through many trials and tribulations. His whole life fighting, not always sure what he was fighting for.

Britt Books and Tea

nanowrimo pic I know I have an ‘About me’ section. However, I thought it would be nice to give you a bit more background about myself, as well as, set the goals for this blog!

My name is Brittany (if you haven’t figured that one out yet.) I am currently 24 years old. I am enjoying what life has to offer me, and going through many huge life changes!

I am also married to one of the most amazing men I have ever met. Kenney and I got married June 15, 2013, and our 4 year wedding anniversary is in just a few weeks! I can’t believe he has dealt with my hyperactive nature this long! Ha. He has been my best friend and someone who has always believed in me, even when I don’t believe in myself.
17353253_10212740637251140_3429252089959528398_nFor those of you who are married, you know how much hard work goes into being married, it’s something you have to constantly work at and give attention to.

There is a saying I like, Marriage is like a box, you each put things in the box and each takes things out of the box. However, when you take from the box make sure you put something else in. Otherwise, you will find the box is empty. You each have a role to play, putting things into the marriage and taking things out.

The first few years of marriage were rough, we were still getting used to being married! Not only were we individuals but we were also a pair! I’d say that the past year has been our greatest so far. We have learned so much, and we have really become a team. Of course, we have our ups and downs that will never stop, but the outlook on situations and life is so much different.

One of the big changes in our lives was when we found out in October of 2016 that we were going to be expecting our first baby in July 2017! Yes folks, this July! In March of 2017, we found out that we were expecting a beautiful baby girl! Kenney was thrilled he wanted a girl so bad lol.

17436232_10208565669684487_7876609204974310977_oNow we are simply waiting for her arrival into this world! With becoming parent’s comes new changes and new responsibilities.

With those changes I am learning what my new role will be, and how I can make that happen. You see I want to be a stay at home mom, but I also still want to pursue my passions.

Kenney and I have been working very hard to make a life for our future baby girl. We have become health and fitness coaches at a gym we go to called Transformation fitness. We have also become independent distributors for Herbalife. Herbalife is a fitness company that provides healthy meals, shakes, snacks, supplements for athletes. My husband managed to lose 41lbs so far and now is getting those sexy muscles and abs! woo! I’m pregnant, so no weight loss for me yet. Ha! However, I can say I have only gained 10lbs since being pregnant wich is fantastic! We love being a part of this community and helping change people’s lives and meet their goals!

17159307_10208857412374418_59215038290883717_o

Now onto the part that pertains to this blog!

Growing up I have always been an artist, a journaler, a reader and a writer. They are my passions. When I was a teenager I participated in a Christian Fine Arts competition every year. My first year I made it to nationals with a poem I wrote and all the years after up until I was 18 I made it to nationals with my artwork. I have always found joy in the arts of all kinds.11728804_10207417724221641_4006926872398740119_o Most of the time you could catch me with my face in a book, or pen to paper.

Most of the time you could catch me with my face in a book, or pen to paper.

I love writing stories, documenting my own stories, reading other people’s stories.

Which brings me to the goal of this blog!

I want Britt Books and Tea to be a place that I can review books I have read, share my enthusiasm as I discover new books I love, even share a bit of my writing journey as well. I want this blog to be a comforting place, cozy and warm. I love cuddling up in a comfy place with a book in hand and a cup of hot tea in the other. This will blog will be my journey, my thoughts, my inspirations, and a place to build a community that loves the same!

If you are still reading this then WOO! Congratulations you got through all that rambling on about myself. Thank you for hanging in there. lol Just for the fun of it, if you made it this far then you should post an emoji that comes to mind when you read this in the comments below, or you can share this post on Twitter, and tag me in it! I would love to follow you and get to know you as well!

Thank you again for all your support, I look forward to this journey with you!

Love

Britt

Letter to My Young Adult Self

So I read a blog post by @bookaddictguide on Twitter. She did a blog post to her YA (young adult) self. I thought this was a really great idea and wanted to do it myself. However, please check out her original blog post The Book Addicts Guide Blog Post and follow her on Twitter @bookaddictguide

 

Dear Teenage Brittany,

There are so many things I want to tell you, to show you. I want to wrap you in my arms and let you know through it all your gonna make it to the other side. I can’t promise that there won’t be more rough patches or hard times because that would be a lie. However, I can promise you that you will find happiness, love, and family. I wish I could hold you and wipe the tears and hurt from your eyes. You have been through so much your whole life, things no child and no teenager should ever have to face. However, you know you are not alone, deep down you know this. Hold on to the hope that you have been given, don’t let it fade because it will get you through the most difficult times in life and even allow you to be there for others who need you.

I know you feel like everything that happens is your fault, or that those you love seem to die around you. I can’t promise that will stop, it won’t, but it’s not your fault! Stop telling yourself everything is your fault, it’s not! People get sick, things happen, this is a sick and dying world. There are people going through worse than you, so be grateful for the family and friends that you have.

As for boys. Forget em. I don’t mean give up on liking boys I simply mean stop worrying about being alone forever, and not finding ‘the one.’ You are going to make mistakes in that department, you are going to get attached to the wrong one’s and think something is wrong with you. Don’t worry about it, you will find ‘the one’ and he will come out of nowhere! Trust me when I tell you, you will not expect it, but you will learn quickly that it was always meant to be and God had a plan for your life the whole time.

Your marriage will be rough at first, just like most marriages. You both will make mistakes, but that’s ok your learning about each other and learning how to love and live with one another. Just be patient, it takes awhile for him to adjust to your level of hyperactive craziness *laughs*. Trust me, it get’s so much better! You even fall in love with him all over again, when you find out that you’re going to be parents! Seeing him form into a father will be something to behold. He will be such a good daddy! I don’t want to give away the surprise of what you will have because that’s half the fun!

Never stop reading and writing! Just don’t! Books helped you escape a lot of things in the past. You were able to go to another world and be a different person. One day that will evolve and you will be the one helping others to escape into the world you have created. You will read and help authors to grow and expand. Your creativity is everything never take it for granted.

Your artwork will never stop being important to you. You will draw, paint, sculpt, and do so many things you never thought possible! You will learn that art is more than just a passion but a gift that you have to give others. Don’t be a snob, and don’t compare your work to others. You are your own individual and you have your own style that is ever growing. However, this doesn’t mean stop learning! Learn from others styles and works, it will help you to grow into the artist you are meant to be.

Finally, love! Never stop loving. Love yourself first and foremost. Love God and give him everything because he will give everything in return., Love your family both blood and non-blooded family because you will find the ones that will never leave your side. Love those that don’t deserve it, that have done you wrong, love them anyways because God loves them. You don’t want to be a hypocrite, do you? no. So just love, you have such a big caring heart for people. Use it! Yes when you love, sometimes your love is taken for granted, abused and sometimes ignored. Don’t stop loving people. This world needs love!ove you always,

Love you always,

Your Future Self