Cover Image: Lead Me Astray

Lead Me Astray

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Member Reviews

This was a captivating story. I really enjoyed it. While I felt the book dragged at times I still really enjoyed it! 4.5 stars.
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Thank you to NetGalley and Wattpad Books for an e-ARC of this novel in exchange for my honest review.
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Thank you netgalley and the publisher for my copy of this book in exchange for my honest review.

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I chose to read this book based off the description and the cover. I really liked the idea of someone trying to find their killer and understand their death with the paranormal element. 

Unfortunately this was a DNF. I think it was the presentation of the book which didn't help and was off putting.

I liked the LGBTQ+ representation and a black women as the protagonist I think this is refreshing to see in stories. 

Overall I'd give it another go once released and would recommend a restructuring or focus on presentation of the book.
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This book is. Fine. This book feels like I am beta-reading for a novel, and it’s great for a first draft - but it’s not the first draft, it’s being printed like, Now. There’s a lot of choppy sentences and some weird pacing and it could really use like, one more round of revisions. But the voice is good, the plot is not hideous, and it feels like it’s kind of "Hush, Hush" level of material. Books don’t have to be good or the best to be enjoyable! Three stars.
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I really wanted to like this book, but unfortunately, I’ve added this one to my DNF list. I’ve seen many rave reviews, and just because it wasn’t for me doesn’t mean it won’t be the book for you, but I just wasn’t able to really get into this story the way I wanted to.

I mean, the concept is amazing! New Orleans with an underground city of supernatural creatures, an LGBTQ+ rep romance between a werewolf, a ghost, and a psychic-type creature, and a mystery that tangles the three protagonists closer together. The story sounded like something that was right up my alley, but by 25% of the way through the book, I still couldn’t connect with it. Much of it had to do with the writing.

It’s hard for me to want to read a book when the writing doesn’t appeal to me— maybe you’ll like it, but it wasn’t for me. To me, the writing felt juvenile and cringey; the prose sometimes felt like stuff that I wrote in middle school, and not in a good way. Because of the writing, and the way that the voices of the three protagonists sounded the same, I couldn’t connect with any of the characters or the situations they were struggling with. It was super easy to see plot holes and inconsistencies in the story, which could have been a result of editing, but either way, it made the story feel weird pacing-wise and sloppy with inconsistencies. 

Overall, if the premise of the book appeals to you, you can always give the book a try, and maybe you’ll be able to get past the writing and enjoy the book. This particular book just turned out to be not my cup of tea.

★ : 1 out of 5

Thank you Wattpad Books and NetGalley for access to an e-ARC in exchange for an honest review!
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2.50 Stars. DNF at 57%. My rating is only for the part of the book that I did read. I really hate not finishing books but unfortunately I have been fighting myself to keep reading and I got to the point where I just needed to stop. I think I blame myself, and the book, about 50/50 for why this was just not working for me. For my part, the book was not what I thought it was going to be and I should have done more research (more on that later). But even if a book is different than expected, I still think and author can win me over which didn’t happen here either.

I have been talking with some other readers lately that while we are slowly seeing more books come out with poly romances, it is still very rare to find an F/F/F romance or an F/F/NB romance. I can count those books on my hand since there are so few of them. When I saw this book on NetGalley, I got really excited thinking that not only was it paranormal, but that it also had an F/F/NB romance. I don’t know how I came to that thinking, I checked the blurb again and while it never says ‘he’, I still don’t know why I was so sure that there was another woman character. Anyway, this book actually has an M/F/NB poly romance. Not a deal breaker for me, but I was disappointed and I hoped that the story would win me over anyway.

As much as I love female detective characters, I dislike male detective characters. Then you throw in the fact that he is an alpha werewolf on top of it, and you have this mansplaining jerk who everyone in the story wants to f*ck, even though he has the personality of a log. It also got really old, really fast how he made the female character out to be so delicate that he had to keep hiding the truth from her, even though she was dead the whole book which I think means that she could’ve handled some tougher issues.

Even though I struggled with the characters a bit, I hoped I would like the romance. There was definitely some chemistry and potential between the woman (ghost) and the nonbinary (mythical being). I think if the romance arc had just been about them, it would have worked better for me. However, I think this book struggled a bit with two identities. In one breath, the book seemed like it wanted to be an erotic romance, and in the other a regular paranormal romance. It felt stuck in two worlds and I wish Warner would have picked one and really went for it. It wasn’t erotic enough to be erotica, and on the other side, any of the paranormal parts seemed to be thrown in with almost no world building behind them.

The book also had some pretty big flow and pacing issues. It was all over the map at times and really rushed in parts too. My copy was an ARC copy so I hope these issues will be cleaned up because I even had basic problems like having trouble recognizing who was speaking. The shifts between characters were not always easy to identify and the book really needed more dialogue tags. While I expected some issues while reading an ARC, I honestly felt like I was reading a Beta readers draft copy instead of a close to finale draft ARC copy.

TLDR: I hate not finishing books, but the older I am the more precious time feels. Even though I had a lot of issues with this, I do think it will have an audience. The book has a lot of great reviews already so it might have gotten better in the second half and I’m missing out by not finishing it. I would recommend this for readers who would be interested in a NB/M/F poly romance and that like their paranormal world and action more surface level. While I appreciate the rep in this book, and I wish this author well, this was not a fit for me.
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Love this book! It center around the main character, Aurie,  who is killed by a hit and run and is now a ghost. Aurie meets Mys who has the ability of sight of the supernatural world, and Zyr, who is a detective and also a werewolf. It is a a genre blend of paranormal romance with thriller. I enjoy the diversity of characters in race and sexuality. The storyline is intertwined well that it can be difficult to say which genre is dominant in the book. I did take one star off due to the storyline being a little convoluted at times. Overall, it is a great book and w4ell diverse characters.
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First off I’m grateful for being granted access to this ARC. But I have to be honest in my review of this book. I wanted to adore this story. The description and the cover drew me in, unfortunately, the story itself suffered from pacing issues and an unevenly crafted world for these characters to inhabit. Multiple times throughout reading this book I had to convince myself to not DNF it. The author does some things very well, like building the romance between the lead trio. The first half of the book was actually kind of interesting because of it. But once the author got into the supernatural side of things it sometimes felt like things were just being tossed out because she had written herself into a corner and had to concoct some random thing to get the characters out of the convoluted situation they had been put in. The whole book suffered regularly from flow issues. The ending is rushed, convoluted, and left open for this clearly to be a multi-book series. On a very positive note, this book is wonderfully inclusive in a way that we just don’t get to see in most books. That alone granted it an extra star I may not have otherwise given it. The cast of characters is diverse and for the most part, respectably fleshed out. This book is far from perfect, but it does have good points. You may have to force yourself through a lot of not-so-great parts to get to the moments that do truly shine and when this author shines she shines bright. I just wish she’d been able to carry those great moments throughout the entire book because then this could have been truly magical. Will I pick up a future book in this series if one is put out? Maybe. I think this author has a lot to offer that I’d be willing to at least sample a future book to see if some of the errors of this book are rectified. But I will not force myself through another book by this author. If a follow-up to this book starts to fall into the same pitfalls like this one I will DNF it and have no regrets about it. This is just my take on this book. I can see the appeal that will make others absolutely adore it, so give it a chance, maybe you’ll have a different experience with it than I did.
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I….honestly this book was so damn good, I’m at a loss for words. I’ve never read anything like it. I was so happy when Mys finally came out of their shell and decided to let Zyr and Aurie in. The three of them together are so cute. Now, the plot twist, I did not see that coming.
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I received a complimentary copy of this book. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own. I didn't mind this book, but its not one that I see myself reading again. I did like most of the characters, but I found the plot to be a bit hard to follow at certain points. I also wasn't a big fan of how steamy the romance was,
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This has a little of everything: supernaturals, mystery, politics, and a polyamorous romance. It was set in New Orleans where all kinds of supernatural creatures live among humans unbeknownst to the humans. The supernaturals have their own version of the city called Overlay City where they have their own laws, law enforcement, government, and government officials. I got more sucked in then I thought I would, but now I really want to see what happens next.

Release date: March 15 2022

Thanks to NetGalley for providing an arc for an honest review
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For what it advertises itself to be, this book was okay. I liked the romance element a lot more than the fantasy element though. It was twilight but sexier and with a better executed love triangle in that it was queer and polyamorous instead of straight and competitive. 

I wasn't expecting the romance to be quite so explicit, but I think it was the best-executed part of the story. Zyr had me momentarily questioning my disdain for men; Aurie and Mys very much so confirmed my love for women and non binary people.

However, I did feel that the fantasy elements were lacking. It wasn't an issue during the first half of the book as the narration was much more focused on the characters and their relationship. But after the halfway mark the storyline focused in on the fantasy plot and it became a bit disappointing. 

Interesting idea, maybe not the best execution.

Source: NetGalley
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Thank you NetGalley for my ARC!

I feel like if Nick Miller from New Girl’s book “The Pepperwood Chronicles” was real and published this would be it. This has wonderful reviews so I feel really bad to give it 1 star. A really interesting concept with a deeply flawed delivery and a sprinkling of disjointed sex scenes between a ghost, a werewolf, and a intersex/ gender fluid cryptid. It got more and more bizarre and convoluted with every page. I think this would have been better if there had been any semblance of world building outside of, “There are supernatural creatures somehow mixed in with the people of New Orleans also here’s a hot werewolf detective and you were killed in a hit and run by an evil vampire sexual deviant.” 

I feel like I dreamed this book.
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I love this story! The entire time I was reading, I was engaged and eager to find out what was going to happen next. How could I not with a supernatural world/creatures, mystery, love, polygamy, LGBTQIA rep. Omg again I loved this book!!! 

I loved all the characters. They were all so unique, yet they meshed so well. The character development was amazing. These characters and this world just felt so real. The struggles, the secrets, the acceptance, the understanding, the lack of trust, the growth, the temptation, the betrayal. Not to mention I found myself stumped along with Zyr and Aurie about who killed Aurie, why, and who she should trust. The plot kept me on my toes. Sondi Warner did her thang! I need book 2!

Thank you to NetGalley and Wattpad books for this eARC!
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Brilliant stuff. Sondi is a gifted writer and a beautiful storyteller. In "Lead Me Astray," she breathes fresh life into the paranormal genre in a way that is both realistic and intimate. You're shortchanging yourself if you don't visit Overlay City as soon as you're able. (less)
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