TO KILL A KINGDOM by Alexandra Christo Blog Tour Review

I am so excited to be a stop on the TO KILL A KINGDOM Blog Tour. From the moment I saw the cover and the tagline I was intrigued.

But when I read the description I knew Alexandra Christo’s TO KILL A KINGDOM was going to be one of those stories that I’d want to devour in a single sitting just to find out how everything ended – and it was. It was so completely unputdownable.

If you’d like to know what else I thought, my review follows below. If you haven’t yet heard of this book, which comes out next week on March 6th, check out the bookish details below. And if you’d like to connect with the author on social media, links to places you can find her online follow at the end of the post.


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Author: Alexandra Christo
Release date: March 6, 2018
Publisher: Feiwel & Friends
Pages: 352
Foramts: Hardcover, audio, eBook



Princess Lira is siren royalty and the most lethal of them all. With the hearts of seventeen princes in her collection, she is revered across the sea. Until a twist of fate forces her to kill one of her own. To punish her daughter, the Sea Queen transforms Lira into the one thing they loathe most–a human. Robbed of her song, Lira has until the winter solstice to deliver Prince Elian’s heart to the Sea Queen and or remain a human forever.

The ocean is the only place Prince Elian calls home, even though he is heir to the most powerful kingdom in the world. Hunting sirens is more than an unsavory hobby–it’s his calling. When he rescues a drowning woman in the ocean, she’s more than what she appears. She promises to help him find the key to destroying all of sirenkind for good–But can he trust her? And just how many deals will Elian have to barter to eliminate mankind’s greatest enemy?


Note: This review is based on an ARC and eARC received from the publisher in exchange for my honest thoughts about the book. A Kindle eCopy was purchased for my collection.

The Review

A multitude of battles and skirmishes, oceans of bloodthirsty creatures, a seemingly impossible quest, a golden prince, and a cold-hearted princess are just some of what make TO KILL A KINGDOM unputdownable. Powerful magic, vengeful and ruthless killers, deception, lies, betrayal, stolen hearts, and romance make it unforgettable.

The Sea Queen’s mandate that every siren must add a heart to her collection only once a year, on her birthday, must be followed. Even by her daughter, Princess Lira. But when the chance to steal a prince’s heart a few weeks early presents itself, she can’t resist.

She knew that breaking the rules might incite her mother’s wrath. But she never thought her actions would ultimately lead to the punishment her mother chose to inflict – one that turned her into her enemy, leaving her weak, vulnerable, and separated from her home.

Determined to impress the Sea Queen and prove just how valuable and clever and brutal she could be, Lira set her sights on the heart of the Midasan prince, Prince Elian. Even in human form she would show her mother that she was the Prince’s Bane and had no shred of humanity that would render her unworthy of reigning when the queen stepped down.

Prince Elian never wanted to take the throne and be forever trapped in Midas. He was only ever happy when at sea, hunting down the sirens that lured ships’ captains and crews to their deaths, and pursuing the siren known only as the Prince’s Bane.

When he learned of an object that had the power to destroy the Sea Queen and every last siren, he would do whatever it took to find it. Even if it meant trusting in fairytales. Even if it mean entering a soul-crushing bargain. Even if it meant relying on someone he knew he should never trust.

Alexandra Christo penned a most delightful, fierce, action-packed, vicious, captivating, and immensely entertaining tale. Her monsters are monstrous. Her heroes are deadly. Their adventures are enthralling. Their quest is formidable. The fights are savage. The romance is unlikely. The outcome is unpredictable.

And with one enemy in the dark, another filled with uncertainty, and two kingdoms on the line, TO KILL A KINGDOM is guaranteed to be a gripping, thrilling, and all-consuming, tentacle-filled read.

The Rating

About Alexandra Christo

Alexandra Christo decided to write books when she was four and her teacher told her she couldn’t be a fairy. She has a BA in Creative Writing and works as a copywriter in London, both of which make her sound more grown up than she feels. When she’s not busy making up stories, she can be found buying far too many cushions and organizing food crawls all over the city. Alexandra currently lives in Hertfordshire with an abundance of cacti (because they’re the only plants she can keep alive).Alexandra is the author of To Kill a Kingdom.


THE TRAITOR’S GAME by Jennifer A. Nielsen Blog Tour Review

I am super excited to be a part of THE TRAITOR’S GAME Blog Tour and to be sharing my review post on its release day.

Yes, the wait is finally over for Jennifer A. Nielsen‘s THE TRAITOR’S GAME, so if you’ve been dying to read this first book in the new series you’ll be able to grab a copy today!

If you haven’t yet heard of this new release – which is seriously, seriously, awesome – all sorts of info is below, along with a link to an excerpt. And if you’d like to join to conversation to talk about what you think about Kestra and Simon and all that happens, join the conversation on social media using #TheTraitorsGame.

Of course if you want to know why it’s called THE TRAITOR’S GAME or discover the meaning behind the tagline – Motives Will Shift. Secrets Will Emerge. – you’ll have to dive in to find out.


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Title & Series: THE TRAITOR’S GAME (The Traitor’s Game #1)
Author: Jennifer A. Nielsen
Release date: February 27, 2018
Publisher: Scholastic Press
Pages: 400
Formats: Hardcover, audio, eBook



Nothing is as it seems in the kingdom of Antora. Kestra Dallisor has spent three years in exile in the Lava Fields, but that won’t stop her from being drawn back into her father’s palace politics. He’s the right hand man of the cruel king, Lord Endrick, which makes Kestra a valuable bargaining chip. A group of rebels knows this all too well—and they snatch Kestra from her carriage as she reluctantly travels home.

The kidnappers want her to retrieve the lost Olden Blade, the only object that can destroy the immortal king, but Kestra is not the obedient captive they expected. Simon, one of her kidnappers, will have his hands full as Kestra tries to foil their plot, by force, cunning, or any means necessary. As motives shift and secrets emerge, both will have to decide what—and who—it is they’re fighting for.


NOTE: This review is based on an eARC and ARC received by the publisher in exchange for my honest thoughts about the book. A finished Kindle eCopy was purchased for my collection.

The Review

THE TRAITOR’S GAME is instantly and completely riveting, immeasurably intriguing, and filled to the brim with action, deception, secrets, lies, betrayal, and heartbreak. The dual POV both reveals and teases. The world is elaborate and interesting and dangerous and thrilling. The characters are captivating, mysterious, challenging, defiant, and a bit untrustworthy. The story grips and twists and surprises and leads to a phenomenally astonishing ending that hints at just some of the amazingness to come in the sequel.

Kestra knew the Dallisors had enemies. With her father willing to do Lord Endrick’s bidding, there were bound to be those who despised her family. She just never imagined how many or who she’d have to protect herself against. And she never thought a time would come when she could be coerced into helping them.

Simon took an oath to stand with those looking to take back the throne, those seeking to defeat Lord Endrick. The rage he felt toward Kestra Dallisor for her betrayal was just fuel on a fire already burning. He never imagined his allegiance would be questioned or that he’d be the one to question it. He never dreamed he might one day have to protect the person he hated most in the world.

Jennifer Nielsen went so far above and beyond with this first book in her new series. Her world and characters stand out – corrupting magic, remarkable and deadly creatures and weapons, an alluring myth, exciting and treacherous and conniving friends and foes. The plot is electrifying and jam-packed with harrowing chases, lethal assaults, intricate plans, difficult choices, shaky alliances, unanticipated outcomes, devastating losses. The pace is fast, the writing suspenseful and engaging and detailed, and the ending worth every nail-biting moment leading up to it.

If you like your heroines fierce, your heroes protective, their loyalties divided, their missions complex, their motivations hidden, their lives full of secrets, THE TRAITOR’S GAME is an absolute must.

The Rating

Like In-N-Out Burger‘s infamous secret menu this one deserves my off-the-menu 6 star rating.

The Trailer


About Jennifer A. Nielsen

Jennifer A. Nielsen is the acclaimed author of the New York Times and USA Today bestselling Ascendance Trilogy: The False Prince, The Runaway King, and The Shadow Throne. She also wrote the New York Times bestselling Mark of the Thief trilogy: Mark of the Thief, Rise of the Wolf, and Wrath of the Storm; the standalone fantasy The Scourge; the historical thriller A Night Divided; the second book in the Horizon series, Deadzone; and Book Six of the Infinity Ring series, Behind Enemy Lines; and The Traitor’s Game, the first book in a series of the same name.

Jennifer lives in northern Utah with her husband, their three children, and a perpetually muddy dog.



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Author: Sarah Beth Durst
Release date: April 4, 2017
Publisher: Clarion Books
Pages: 352
Formats: Hardcover, eBook



The traditional Emperor’s Journey is meant to be uneventful. But as the princesses Seika and Ji-Lin—twin sisters—travel to pay respects to their kingdom’s dragon guardian, unexpected monsters appear and tremors shake the earth. The Hidden Islands face unprecedented threats, and the old rituals are failing. With only their strength, ingenuity, and flying lion to rely on, can the sisters find a new way to keep their people safe?


Note: This review is based on an ARC received from the author in exchange for my honest thoughts about the book. A Kindle eCopy was purchased for my collection.

The Review

JOURNEY ACROSS THE HIDDEN ISLANDS is an absolutely wonderful, magical, and heartwarming tale that takes readers on an epic, perilous, monster-filled adventure with two sisters and a winged lion. It is exciting and enchanting and amusing and imaginative. It delivers a number of positive messages about conquering fear, growing up, letting go, being understanding, and being responsible. It is a gripping and enthralling story that can and will be enjoyed by readers of any age.

Ji-Lin missed her sister desperately. As much as she loved training to become a warrior so that she could protect Seika, she wished they didn’t have to be separated for so long. So when she first learned that she would get to go home for a visit, she was thrilled. But when she discovered that the reason for the visit was so that she could accompany Seika on the Emperor’s Journey, her excitement turned to anxiety. Because she wasn’t quite sure she was ready for such an important task.

Seika followed every rule and did everything she was asked, unlike her sister, Ji-Lin. But when her father, the emperor, told her that it was time for her to do her duty for Himitsu and take the journey to the island’s guardian to renew their bargain, she wasn’t certain she was adequately prepared to honor tradition. She was told the path would be easy, but she had never been away from home before. And she certainly never had to come face-to-face with a dragon.

Sarah Beth Durst created a story that is delightful and interesting and fun and funny. She introduces two very likable twin sisters with very different personalities, strengths, and weaknesses. She tests their fortitude, their ingenuity, their compassion, and their loyalty. And she takes them on a trek through a world that is fraught with danger – but she doesn’t make them go on it alone.

They are joined by Alejan, Ji-Lin’s friend and protector, an incredibly adorable winged lion who is equally as interested in sharing stories about his idol, Master Shai, as he is in talking about his next meal. And by a boy who they can’t decide whether he’s more of an interloper or a valuable traveling companion.

Sea monsters and pirate-like ships, earthquakes and abandoned villages, bargains and betrayals, heroes and princesses, JOURNEY ACROSS THE HIDDEN ISLANDS has it all and then some. And with a few unexpected twists thrown in, it promises to be a thoroughly engaging and immensely entertaining read.

The Rating

About Sarah Beth Durst

Sarah Beth Durst is the award-winning author of eleven fantasy novels for kids, teens, and adults, including Drink Slay Love, the basis for the upcoming TV movie of the same name, airing on Lifetime in 2017. Her latest book for adults, The Queen of Blood, came out in September 2016 from Harper Voyager, and her next book for kids, Journey Across the Hidden Islands, comes out in April 2017 from HMH/Clarion Books. Sarah won an ALA Alex Award and a Mythopoeic Fantasy Award, and has been a finalist for SFWA’s Andre Norton Award three times.

Sarah was born in Northboro, Massachusetts, a small town that later became the setting for her debut novel. At the age of ten, she decided she wanted to be a writer. (Before that, she wanted to be Wonder Woman, except with real flying ability instead of an invisible jet. She also would have accepted a career as a unicorn princess.) And she began writing fantasy stories. She attended Princeton University, where she spent four years studying English, writing about dragons, and wondering what the campus gargoyles would say if they could talk. Sarah lives in Stony Brook, New York, with her husband, her children, and her ill-mannered cat.


FALLING KINGDOMS Series Promo: My Favorite Kingdoms + Giveaway


I have owned every single one of the three currently available Falling Kingdoms books since their respective release dates but have only recently had the chance to embark upon the adventure. And all I can say is, “What have I been waiting for?”

Because… OH. MY. GOSH. I am in LOVE with this series!!!!!

I fell in love from the very first line in FALLING KINGDOMS:

She’d never killed before tonight.

Talk about great first lines. It was instalove for me. And that love has grown exponentially as I’ve continued to read.

I will be all caught up by the time my pre-order copy of FROZEN TIDES downloads to my Kindle on December 15th. Of course that means I’ll have to suffer the agonizing wait for the final two books in the series. But it will be so worth the wait.

If you haven’t yet had the chance to discover this seriously amazing series, you can check it out on PENGUIN RANDOM HOUSE and on GOODREADS or visit the series WEBSITE.

Details on each of the books in the series are also below. And there are also links to connect with the author.

My Favorite Kingdoms

For this promo post in anticipation of FROZEN TIDES’ release we were asked to talk about which kingdom(s), region(s), or world(s) we would conquer, rule, or live in as a merchant. Here are just a few.

Kingdoms/Worlds I’d Conquer

The Winter Realm – a.k.a. The Unseelie Court from Julie Kagawa’s IRON FEY series. The Unseelie have always been the most interesting of the fae and I would love to take Queen Mab’s place and rule in her stead. And, hey, someone has to take Queen Mab down, why not me?

The Kingdom of Spring – one of the kingdoms from Sara Raasch’s SNOW LIKE ASHES series. Spring has caused so much trouble for the Winterians. I’d love to conquer it just ensure that its former king does not try to take power again.

Kingdoms/Worlds I’d Rule

Auranos – from Morgan Rhodes’ FALLING KINGDOMS series. While I might change my mind as I continue my journey with these books, I’d love to rule the kingdom that has the most resources and best climate. And yes they have enemies. But I’d like to think I’d have been a smarter and more fair ruler and thus avoided some of the enmity.

Cane – from WINTERSPELL by Claire Legrand. It was and could be again a beautiful and magical place. I suppose first I’d have to have taken it from Anise, but I wouldn’t just want to conquer, I’d definitely want to rule this land.

Kingdoms/Worlds I’d Live In

Lothlórien – one of the Elven kingdoms from LORD OF THE RINGS by J.R.R. Tolkein. Though I’d be happy to have lived in any of the Elven kingdoms, even though they fell eventually.

Gilead – from THE DARK TOWER series by Stephen King. This is not a kingdom. But this world that Roland lived in is one I would have loved to have lived in. It, too, fell. But living there when Roland did would have been amazing.


Of course I’d love to live in almost all of the fictional faerie worlds I’ve read about and even be ruler of one or two – Melissa Marr’s Wicked Lovely series comes to mind. I’d live in any of those faerie courts.

I would love to conquer the more evil kingdoms and vanquish their rulers in any of the fantasy novels I’ve read – Sabaa Tahir’s An Ember in the Ashes series, Rae Carson’s Fire & Thorns series, Josephine Angelini’s Worldwalker trilogy.

And I’d love to visit any number of worlds or kingdoms, even if I were forced to be just a merchant – The Elemental Trilogy by Sherry Thomas, The Witch Hunter by Virginia Boecker, Red Queen by Victoria Aveyard, and the Defiance series by C.J. Redwine.

How about you?

What are your favorite worlds or kingdoms? Would you want to be a ruler, risking your life at every moment to keep your kingdom safe? Or would you prefer to visit or live in one of the kingdoms you’re most curious about? Or are you all about conquering kingdoms to increase your power or to oust an unjust ruler?



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Title & Series: FROZEN TIDES (Falling Kingdoms #4)
Author: Morgan Rhodes
Release date: December 15, 2015
Publisher: Razorbill
Pages: 432
Formats: Hardcover, audio, eBook


The plans are laid and the players are determined…but nothing can prepare these unlikely warriors for what the elemental gods of Mytica have in store. 

CLEO: Reeling after a shocking realization about Magnus, Princess Cleo must cast aside her feelings and look toward her kingdom with the eyes of a queen.

MAGNUS: The steely prince of Limeros is once again torn between love and duty, leaving him wondering whether he’s strong enough to rule his people.

LUCIA: Heartbroken and blind with fury, the betrayed sorceress allies with the awoken Fire god, who also seeks revenge.

JONAS: The defeated rebel leader reunites with Princess Cleo, only to become a pawn in the dangerous hunt for the elusive Kindred.

KING GAIUS: A desperate King of Blood flees Mytica and sails to Kraeshia, where he attempts to ally with the famously brutal emperor across the Silver Sea.


About Morgan Rhodes


Morgan Rhodes lives in Ontario, Canada. As a child, she always wanted to be a princess—the kind that knows how to wield a sharp sword to help save both kingdoms and princes from fire-breathing dragons and dark wizards. Instead, she became a writer, which is just as good and much less dangerous. Along with writing, Morgan enjoys photography, travel, and reality TV, and is an extremely picky yet voracious reader of all kinds of books. Under another pen name, she’s a nationally bestselling author of many paranormal novels. Falling Kingdoms is her first high fantasy.




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Title & Series: FALLING KINGDOMS (Falling Kingdoms #1)
Author: Morgan Rhodes
Release date: December 11, 2012
Publisher: Razorbill
Pages: 432
Formats: Hardcover, paperback, audio, eBook



War brought them together. Love will tear them apart.

Princess Cleo of Mytica confronts violence for the first time in her life when a shocking murder sets her kingdom on a path to collapse. Once a privileged royal, Cleo must now summon the strength to survive in this new world and fight for her rightful place as Queen.

The King of Limeros’s son, Magnus, must plan each footstep with shrewd, sharp guile if he is to earn his powerful father’s trust, while his sister, Lucia, discovers a terrifying secret about her heritage that will change everything.

Rebellious Jonas lashes out against the forces of oppression that have kept his country cruelly impoverished—and finds himself the leader of a people’s revolution centuries in the making.

Witches, if found, are put to death, and Watchers, immortal beings who take the shape of hawks to visit the human world, have been almost entirely forgotten. A vicious power struggle quickly escalates to war, and these four young people collide against each other and the rise of elementia, the magic that can topple kingdoms and crown a ruler in the same day.


The Falling Kingdoms Trailer



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Title & Series: REBEL SPRING (Falling Kingdoms #3)
Author: Morgan Rhodes
Release date: December 3, 2013
Publisher: Razorbill
Pages: 416
Formats: Hardcover, paperback, audio, eBook



War brought them together. Love will tear them apart.

Auranos has been conquered and the three kingdoms—Auranos, Limeros, and Paelsia—are now unwillingly united as one country called Mytica. But alluring, dangerous magic still beckons, and with it the chance to rule not just Mytica, but the world. . . .

  • CLEO is now a prisoner in her own palace, forced to be an ambassador for Mytica as the evil King Gaius lies to her people
  • MAGNUS stands to eventually inherit the new kingdom but is still obsessed with his feelings for his adopted sister, Lucia
  • LUCIA is haunted by the deadly outcome of her breathtaking display of magic that allowed her father to capture the kingdoms
  • JONAS watches at the palace gates, a troop of rebels behind him, waiting for him to tell them how he plans to overtake King Gaius

When Gaius announces that a road is to be built into the Forbidden Mountains, formally linking all of Mytica together, he sets off a chain of cataclysmic events that will forever change the face of this land.




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Title & Series: GATHERING DARKNESS (Falling Kingdoms #3)
Author: Morgan Rhodes
Release date: December 9, 2014
Publisher: Razorbill
Pages: 432
Formats: Hardcover, paperback, audio, eBook



War brought them together. Love will tear them apart.

Alliances form across Mytica and beyond as royals and rebels alike race to hunt down the Kindred—the four elemental crystals that give their owners god-like power. The stakes have never been higher for Magnus and Cleo, who are brought together by a life or death decision that will lock their fates and change the course of the kingdom forever.

THE REBELS forge ahead. Princess Cleo slays with sweetness—and a secret that might control Lucia’s magic—as she and vengeful Jonaslead the hunt for the all-powerful Kindred.

THE KRAESHIANS join the fray. Ashur and Amara, the royal siblings from the vast kingdom across the Silver Sea, prove to be just as ruthless as they are charming as they manipulate their way to victory.

THE WATCHERS follow Melenia out of the Sanctuary. They ally, in the flesh, with King Gaius, who vows to use Lucia’s powers to unveil the Kindred.

And which side will Prince Magnus choose, now that everyone he’s been betrayed by everyone he’s ever loved?


The Giveaway

There is a promo-wide giveaway that runs from Oct. 26-Nov.27 for…

  • A SIGNED set of FALLING KINGDOMS, REBEL SPRING, and GATHERING DARKNESS by Morgan Rhodes to THREE (3) winners – US only

***Rafflecopter hosted by and prizing courtesy of the publisher***

Enter in the Rafflecopter below…

a Rafflecopter giveaway

RYAR Review: CHASING POWER by Sarah Beth Durst

Previously published on


CHASING POWER by Sarah Beth Durst
Published by Bloomsbury USA Childrens on October 14, 2014
Genres: Fantasy, Paranormal
Provided by: Author, NetGalley
Rating: 4 stars


This book was provided in exchange for an honest review.


Sixteen-year-old Kayla was born with the ability to move things with her mind—things like credit cards and buttons on cash registers—and she has become a master shoplifter. She steals to build up enough money for her and her mom to be able to flee if her dad finds them again . . . which would mean grave danger for them both.

When she’s caught stealing by a boy named Daniel—a boy with the ability to teleport—he needs her help and is willing to blackmail her to get it. Together, they embark on a quest to find and steal an ancient incantation, written on three indestructible stones and hidden millennia ago, all to rescue Daniel’s kidnapped mother. But Kayla has no idea that this rescue mission will lead back to her own family-and to betrayals that she may not be able to forgive . . . or survive.


Sarah Beth Durst’s CHASING POWER is a fun, exciting and fast-paced read. It takes readers and its characters on a wonderful adventure across the country and the globe in pursuit of hidden artifacts. It delivers danger, thrills, magic and a bit of romance in its action-packed pages. It has characters who are likable, interesting and quirky, others who are untrustworthy and mysterious, and still others who are detestable and deadly. It’s a story that will keep readers entertained from start to finish.

Kayla and her mom have been on the run since she was a young child, living in fear, ready to leave at a moment’s notice, hiding from a father she hardly remembers, but whose very existence is a threat to her own. In order to remain undetected she must stay under the radar, avoid attention, and keep her ability a secret.

But resisting the urge to use her powers to take what she and her mom need in order to stay safe is not something Kayla is capable of. Which is why, no matter how careful she thinks she’s been, she is caught using her telekinetic abilities to steal by a boy who threatens to expose her unless she helps him.

Kayla and Daniel’s journey is exhilarating and danger-filled. From cave-ins to poisonous snakes to voodoo queens to power hungry pursuers, CHASING POWER doesn’t let up. With a clever best friend who assists from afar, a panicked mother whose spells not only protect but prevent, an unusually helpful voodoo queen whose motives are unknown, and a boy desperate to find his mother no matter how great a risk, there is no shortage of fascinating characters to keep Kayla on her toes.

Add in a mystery, a number of twists and turns, and an ending that delivers a couple of surprises, CHASING POWER is a captivating and delightful story with a female protagonist who is spunky and clever and caring and adventurous that will appeal to readers of any age.

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