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Member Reviews

I really enjoyed this book. I really liked the world that was created. It has an interesting magic system. It has betrayal, realising errors, finding of ones path and branching story arcs.
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The cover of the book is amazing and the synopsis seemed to pull me in however I just couldn’t get myself attached like I thought I would be. The writing is good but it doesn’t connect me to the characters or the story. I will try to read again in the future and write a review on the entirety of the novel however I just am finding that this book is not holding my attention.
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I will post this on my instagram, blog, and goodreads.
I was approved to read an advanced e-copy of Maiden by Teresa A. Harrison from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. Here are my thoughts on the book:

The book follows two friends, Jayme and Marta, as they are pulled down two different paths and their friendship is strained. I did enjoy their friendship because it is relatable. Sometimes we think we are making the best choice for our friend when in the end it can hurt them. I wished there had been more of them interacting.

Honestly, this wasn't one of my favorite reads. The cover and synopsis pulled me in but the beginning of the book just left me not wanting to read the rest. I love when authors add real life issues but sometimes the execution is off. I also would have liked more action as this book didn't keep me engaged and some of the plot just didn't make sense.

Although this book wasn't for me, if you are interested in fantasy based around a strong female you can get Maiden starting October 13th, 2018!
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***#earc thanks to #netgalley for a fair review***

Maiden is a story of two fairy tales crossing paths both physically & metaphysically. Jayme & Marta are childhood friends with different spiritual upbringings. After exposing Marta as a pagan to the local Brotherhood, all moral H-E-Double Hockey Sticks breaks loose leading our MCs to an enchanted cottage in the woods where they learn they are gifted with Lightwalker abilities. Ooh aah!

I have to say this book has a beautiful cover and an excellent title, but I personally felt like the author’s talent was somehow buried beneath complicated plot lines and repetitive scenes. There is magic in the idea of the story line, but the execution left me exhausted (and at times slightly morally shamed). :(
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There are many ways to start a novel that can hook a reader's attention. For me, starting it with a serious religious debate of how women are weak, impure, and likely to be damned by God isn't the best way. I think it's certainly possible to have a religious society in fantasy that looks down upon "pagan" rituals, but here it seems very divided amongst gendered lines, which just makes me angry. 

I really hope the author set up these expectations with the purpose of showing how women are in fact strong and amazing by the end of the book, but I won't finish reading this to find out. Just in the first 15%, the parts covered by the provided synopsis, the male MC rats out his "pagan" female best friend, resulting in a massacre of women, and a male priest essentially brainwashes men with disgusting patriarchal nonsense. If I wanted to read about how women are inferior to men, and how men must "save" women for "their own good," I'd read a history book or honestly just watch the news.
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*ARC received from NetGalley in return for an honest review* 

I don't know....this has a really interesting start that grabbed my attention. I expected it to be fast paced, action packed steeped in folklore and magic. But it wasn't, and I am so disappointed. I am not criticizing the writing, it was good...but the story itself is lackluster. 

Our story starts off with best friends Marta and Jayme choosing different paths in life. Jayme's is one of a devout believer and Marta is that of something similar to the Druids, she wants to be a healer. They argue, Jayme wants to save her soul, Marta says "Naww, no thanks", and both characters are resolute in their paths of life. Jayme wants nothing more to save her soul, so he snitches on her which leads to others getting killed or captured. To try to make things right, he goes after Marta, saves her and leaves her. 

And thus their journey of self discovery begins. But there was nothing exciting about it. There was no journey, there were no battles there was no major self discovery. It was so tame and so boring AND NOTHING HAPPENED! There were magical creatures, but there was not enough back story and world building. There was nothing really major that happened for them to discover themselves. It ends with Marta and Jayme being reunited and Jayme professing how he feels for her and then they go their ways again because the journey hasn't ended? I think? I will admit that once I hit 40% I skimmed through the rest, and I don't think I missed anything. 

Maybe if I picked this up another time I would like it more. Maybe I am being too critical, or maybe this book just isn't for me, here are others who loved it and enjoyed it a lot.
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I received this novel from net galley and the publisher. Thank you!
This novel was a good read. Discovering one's true destiny is a long and difficult path. However, both Marta and Jayme have their own destinies ahead of them. Marta and Jayme has been friends since they were children, and it has evolved into something more. Jayme has gotten involved with the priests, who have different views of women, believing they are not intelligent and only good for cooking, cleaning, and breeding. Believing he is trying to save Marta's soul, Jayne inadvertently betrays Marta and the other young women, Jayme is able to save Marta, but feels the guilt at what he has done and seeks the true motives of the priests. Both Jayme and Marta continue on a path towards a LightWarrior and a LightWalker, where they undergo training separately under those who wish to stop the darkness from consuming the world. Both need to embrace the magic and overcome their own fears to understand what it truly means to be part of the Light and save the people who need it.
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