Monday, December 21, 2015

Review: Burn for Me by Ilona Andrews

Greetings readers! Happy Monday and thanks for stopping by Fiction Fairies. Today I'll be reviewing Burn for Me by Ilona Andrews.

Fair warning: I think you should skim the summary and ignore the cover!!!

They really don't do the book justice, and trust me when I say this is a good one. I'm surprised not as many people are reading this!

20705702Nevada Baylor is faced with the most challenging case of her detective career-a suicide mission to bring in a suspect in a volatile case. Nevada isn't sure she has the chops. Her quarry is a Prime, the highest rank of magic user, who can set anyone and anything on fire.

Then she's kidnapped by Connor "Mad" Rogan-a darkly tempting billionaire with equally devastating powers. Torn between wanting to run or surrender to their overwhelming attraction, Nevada must join forces with Rogan to stay alive.

Rogan's after the same target, so he needs Nevada. But she's getting under his skin, making him care about someone other than himself for a change. And, as Rogan has learned, love can be as perilous as death, especially in the magic world.

(Summary from

Genres: urban fantasy, romance

This one was FUN.
The characters were spot on, the plot was fast-paced and interesting, and the romance was teasing and just enough there that I was satisfied. Ilona Andrews is now one of my go-to authors, and only after reading this one book!! The next book in the series comes out in May 2017 and I'm honestly upset. Why can't it be sooner?!?!

The story is boss. Basically, Nevada is a private investigator in her family's small firm and they just barely scrape by. Suddenly, the House/corporation that owns their debt calls Nevada up. They give her an ultimatum: lose the family business and have fun in the streets of poverty... or agree to a suicide mission. 
Of course, Nevada chooses the suicide mission.

S.O. to the infamous Adam Parson
Said suicide mission is catching Adam Parson (infamous bad boy wanted by the law who incinerates things for fun)... without being fried to a crisp.
Ah, I forgot to mention. He's incredibly attractive, never wears a shirt, and is C-R-A-Z-Y.
What a lovely mix!

While trying to apprehend Adam, Nevada gets kidnapped by Mad Rogan. He literally chains her to his basement floor and then interrogates her. Rogan thinks Nevada is connected to Adam and can help with his mission.

(Hmm. This is getting complicated. Just read the book and trust me that the story's awesome.)

I like to imagine Rogan as a savage Sean O'Pry,
but then again whatever floats your boat
After many exciting events, she and Rogan end up in a tenuous, strained partnership. (With mildly sexual undertones because Rogan, like Adam, is crazy attractive.) 

The romance was never absurd or over-the-top. Just a number of teasing hints, heated glances, and scandalous thoughts from Nevada that I'd do best not to repeat. It's a masterful build up, and I can't wait for the sequel to see what happens next between Nevada and Rogan. 

The characters are interesting. The villains or "bad guys" are multi-faceted and complicated, and I couldn't predict their next moves. I found them more interesting than the "good guys" for sure, but even I can admit that Nevada's family is adorable. I mean, her grandma tinkers with TANKS for goodness sake. And her mom is a sniper. And her cousin is a genius hacker. Need I say more? They're cool characters - all of them.

(Off topic secret confession: is it bad that I want more crazy Adam? I know he's straight up evil, and he's totally a murderer, but... There's something there. He needs some angst in the next book. He's messed up, but there's so much potential...

To conclude: READ THIS. 

Yeah. I went there.

If you have any comments to share, I'd love to hear them!


Sunday, December 13, 2015

Review: Snow Like Ashes by Sara Raasch

Greetings, readers! Happy Sunday and thanks for stopping by Fiction Fairies. Today I'll be reviewing the novel Snow Like Ashes by Sara Raasch.

A heartbroken girl. A fierce warrior. A hero in the making.
Sixteen years ago the Kingdom of Winter was conquered and its citizens enslaved, leaving them without magic or a monarch. Now, the Winterians' only hope for freedom is the eight survivors who managed to escape, and who have been waiting for the opportunity to steal back Winter's magic and rebuild the kingdom ever since.
Orphaned as an infant during Winter's defeat, Meira has lived her whole life as a refugee, raised by the Winterians' general, Sir. Training to be a warrior-and desperately in love with her best friend, and future king, Mather-she would do anything to help her kingdom rise to power again.

So when scouts discover the location of the ancient locket that can restore Winter's magic, Meira decides to go after it herself. Finally, she's scaling towers, fighting enemy soldiers, and serving her kingdom just as she's always dreamed she would. But the mission doesn't go as planned, and Meira soon finds herself thrust into a world of evil magic and dangerous politics - and ultimately comes to realize her destiny is not , never has been, her own.

(summary from

I've been meaning to get around to this book, but always got side-tracked by something else. So many people really enjoyed it, so I thought, what the heck? Let's do this.
And so I did.
And I'm not sure if I loved it like everyone else.

To begin with, the story is pretty good. I'm not sure if it's original, exactly, but then again, how many Young Adult books are truly one-of-a-kind? There's the whole warring kingdoms, magic, and politics thing. And the slavery, espionage, and warrior-training thing. It's an interesting mix - honestly it kind of reminded me of Grave Mercy. I'm not sure why, but something about it rang familiar. Perhaps it was the mix of historical/fantasy? Agh, I don't know. There is a twist at the end in the middle of the climax, and honestly I saw it coming. When I first started Snow Like Ashes, I jokingly mused to myself, "Oh, watch THIS happen and be the big surprise." 
So yeah, I wasn't impressed.

As for the characters, I'm not sure how I felt about them. They were... "nice"? I just... Meira was okay. She tried to be independent and tough, but it felt like an act to me. As if this was the role she wanted to be, and the entire book she was pretending to be a warrior. Meh. Mather was nice as well? He was all broody and closed-off, and that's just not my thing. Same for Theron - too broody and emotional for me. Everyone was all, "Ah, the angst! I'm just a pawn in the big scheme of things, and I hate it! Let me be my own person! I want to forge my own path and choose my destiny!"

Fantastic. I just love it when sixteen-year-olds rebel and declare their individuality and create unnecessary drama.
I had a lot of anticipation and excitement for the villain, King Angra, but he ended up being crazy. Not even cool crazy or seductive crazy (skeptical? Turn towards Warner from Shatter Me or The Darkling from Shadow and Bone). Just plain evil. The standard villain who's power-hungry and won't stop until he gets what he wants. Two-dimensional, dare I say?

Ah, and if you can't tell already there is... wait for it... A LOVE TRIANGLE.
Yes, that was the romance of the book. And it was unsatisfactory and chock-full of teenage angst and jealousy and bleh.

I mean, don't get me wrong. This was entertaining. I read this book in like one sitting. But did it have substance, was it worth a re-read? Nah. But I needed a well-written fantasy to procrastinate, and Snow Like Ashes gave me the perfect excuse to not study for finals.

To conclude: it's a fun read, definitely easy to get drawn into. But will you finish it and praise the higher powers for gifting you with this glorious story? Well... You'll have to find out yourself.

So, if you have any comments to share, I'd love to hear them!