Book Review: Rhapsody (The Nightmusic Trilogy, #3) by Heather McKenzie

Rhapsody (The Nightmusic Trilogy, #3) by Heather McKenzie

A YA Novel published by Clean Teen Publishing (01/07/19)

Summary:

With Luke captured, Kaya has no choice but to save him. Kaya’s father, the evil Henry, has given her an ultimatum: her life for his. The clock is ticking and Kaya is all for rushing down to her former home, saving her beloved and sacrificing herself. Thomas, Lisa, and Seth are not as keen on Kaya’s plan. Nothing will stand in Kaya’s way. Not Thomas, who loves her as more than just a friend. Not Seth, who is more interested in keeping Kaya alive than in respecting her decision. But there’s more at stake than just her life and the best laid plans don’t always work.

Keywords:

Suspense, Romance, Love Triangle, Hate, Secrets, Mystery, Loyalty, Family, Hiding, Running, Escape, Heiress, Protection, Discovery, Past, Power, Corruption, Fight, Motivation, Money, Safe, Bargaining, Resources, Friendship, Destruction

My Review:

Rhapsody starts off right where Nocturne left off. Luke and Stephan are in custody (Henry’s custody). Kaya, with her group of friends is setting out to save Luke. Thomas and Seth won’t let her passion, anger, and emotion get the better of her. There is more at stake than Kaya’s life. I like how this book really drives home the bigger picture in the world McKenzie builds in this trilogy. Henry is up to no good and if Kaya goes back to him, it will be nothing but trouble for more than just her friends. He is evil on a much larger scale than Kaya ever thought. He is a real and true bad guy. I appreciated the fact that he is still Kaya’s father. Like in a real abusive relationship, especially one among family members, Kaya longs for the attention and love of her father. All she ever wanted was his love. If he had given her that when she was younger, would she consider him as evil as she does? Kaya has flashbacks to times when Henry could have shown his love and this illustrates all the more what a terrible person he is. It also breaks down any sort of connection Kaya might have had with her father.

I didn’t like this third and final book in the trilogy as much as the first and second books. Even though I read this book in a very short period of time and had a hard time putting it down, it felt like the entire book was a climax. There was so much tension and action that I was continually anxious for Kaya and an eventual happy ending.

Like with the first book and the second book, everyone falls in love with Kaya and her do-what-she-believes-in attitude. She wears her heart on her sleeve, will dig in her heels when she needs to, and will do anything to protect those she loves. Kaya is the heroine everyone wants to be and the woman all the men fall in love with. Even the women fall in love with her. I have to wonder how she manages to make enemies, but she does!

McKenzie is a phenomenal storyteller and has a seamless writing style. The story had a flow, as did the structure of the words on the pages. I would read books from a different genre from this author, if she were to leave young adult and write something completely different. I look forwarding to reading McKenzie’s next novel.

This novel will be published by Clean Teen Publishing on 01/07/2019 and is available on Amazon here.

TL;DR Star Rating: 4.50

Links for more information:

Heather McKenzie’s Website

Twitter

Goodreads

Advertisements

Book Review: Nocturne by Heather McKenzie with Book Blitz

Nocturne by Heather McKenzie

A YA Novel published by Clean Teen Publishing (04/20/18)

Summary:

Kaya, free from her father, is not on her own. She has Luke and part of his crew. Hiding out in a random motel, they think they’re safe but it proves much harder to disappear then to run away. Kaya must leave behind those she loves to keep them safe and truly disappear. Or so she thinks.

Keywords:

Suspense, Romance, Love Triangle, Self-Discovery, Hate, Secrets, Mystery, Loyalty, Family, Hiding, Running, Escape, Heiress, Protection, Discovery, Past, Power, Corruption, Fight, Motivation, Money

My Review:

Nocturne starts off with a bang – right where Serenade left off. Kaya is still with Luke and all the problems revealed in book one are pressing down on her. She doesn’t just want to be normal anymore. She can’t have the normal life. Not with both her parents trying to find her – and not necessarily alive.

Kaya really comes into her own with this book. She is still young and ignorant of the wide world, but she is learning. She grows so much throughout this book, accepting who she is and what she must do. She is part of a larger conspiracy between her parents. A lesser person would slink off and disappear into whatever normal life is left for her, but Kaya shines. She is stubborn to a fault, but she almost always does what’s right. Even when it puts her in danger. Especially when it puts her in danger, it would seem.

Everyone falls in love with Kaya and her do-what-she-believes-in attitude. She wears her heart on her sleeve, will dig in her heels when she needs to, and will do anything to protect those she loves. Kaya is the heroine everyone wants to be and the woman all the men fall in love with.

I couldn’t put this book down and I can’t wait for more of Kaya’s story.

This novel was published by Clean Teen Publishing on March 20th, 2018 and is available on Amazon here.

TL;DR Star Rating: 4.75

Links for more information:

Heather McKenzie’s Website

Twitter

Goodreads

Nocturne
Heather McKenzie
(Nightmusic Trilogy, #2)
Published by: Clean Teen Publishing
Publication date: March 20th 2018
Genres: Mystery, Suspense, Young Adult

I am hunted.
A pawn in a vicious game.
The only way I can protect the ones I love…
…is to disappear.

Finally free of her father, Kaya has the one thing that keeps her heart beating—Luke.

Blissfully content in his arms, everything seems perfect…until their world is shattered by a deadly invasion. When an old ally comes to the rescue, Kaya wants none of it. She is devastated to learn the identity of her attacker, and that she must do something truly heartbreaking if she wants to save the ones she loves. Sacrificing everything and sinking into bottomless sorrow, Kaya finds solace in an unlikely friend—one who shows her a different kind of love, and helps her discover an inner strength she never thought possible.

A heart-pounding journey of self-discovery, Nocturne is the transformative second installment of The Nightmusic Trilogy by Heather McKenzie.

Goodreads / Amazon / Barnes & Noble / iBooks / Kobo

Grab book 1 – Serenade – for FREE!
Amazon / Barnes & Noble / iBooks / Kobo

EXCERPT:

I flew out the door into the cool night, took four steps, then stopped—the latest enlightening news about my father had sent me over the edge. Tears burst from my eyes. The last shred of hope I’d been hanging onto that Henry wasn’t all bad had been completely obliterated; he was an actual monster.

I dropped to the curb and put my head in my hands. The rain started falling, lightly dusting my shoulders at first, then becoming a downpour just to add to my misery. I became soaked head to toe, but I didn’t care. I stayed where I was, wishing the rain would melt me into a puddle that would drain into the gutter and then just disappear into the earth…

“You left something in my truck,” said a voice from out of nowhere.

At the edge of my vision was Ben, rain coming down even harder now and pouring off his cowboy hat in rivers. He was holding out a paper bag, which was now soaked. It was the muffin I hadn’t eaten.

“I didn’t want it to go to waste,” he added, eyeing me with concern, then glancing at the café window where I could feel many sets of eyes on my back.

I dropped my gaze back to the gutter. My body didn’t want to move, and I still held out hope that the rain might just wash me away. Ben said something, and then he hauled me up and turned me to face him. He lifted my chin, and I had no choice but to meet his eyes. The rain plastered my hair to my face, mixing with the tears that were spilling out of me with blinding force.

He gave me a weak smile. “I tried to leave. Got in my truck and was ten minutes out of town, but then I realized…” He paused, fumbling for the right words. “I could really use some help at my ranch. Now, the job doesn’t pay much, but you’ll have your own room and all the food you can eat.
You’ll be dry.”

He waited patiently for an answer, but I was so grateful that all my words caught in my throat. He tossed the paper bag with the muffin into the garbage. After a quick glance at the internet café and the white-haired waiter watching from the doorway, his hand firmly latched onto mine. I had the sense I wasn’t being given a choice, I was going wherever this cowboy wanted me to.

“I’m taking you home now,” he said over the downpour.

Home. Home was in Luke’s arms….

The rain was falling in sheets. Since I wasn’t about to turn into a puddle and dissolve, I let the cowboy lead the way.

 

Author Bio:

Heather McKenzie is the Canadian author of The Nightmusic Trilogy. Also a professional singer/songwriter with five albums to date, she told stories through music for years before falling in love with novel writing. Heather pulls from her extraordinary experiences as a musician to fuel her passion for creating Young Adult fiction. She is a rocker at heart, a mom of three and an aspiring painter.

Website / Goodreads / Facebook / Twitter

 

GIVEAWAY!
a Rafflecopter giveaway
https://widget-prime.rafflecopter.com/launch.js

XBTBanner1

Book Review: Final Life (The Transhuman Chronicles Book 1) by Rose Garcia

Final Life (The Transhuman Chronicles Book 1) by Rose Garcia

A Young Adult Paranormal Novel published by Amazon Digital Services LLC (05/15/12)

Summary:

Dominique is the new girl in town. She thought having to move across the country during her last year of high school was bad enough, but lately she’s been having visions of a red desert accompanied by a bad feeling. The visions become more frequent and the feeling of foreboding gets worse. Is there something going on or is she just crazy?

Keywords:

Survival, YA, Action, Science Fiction, Time Travel, Science Fiction, Love Triangle, Friendship, Death, Moving, School, Psychics, Ouija, Fate, Chosen One, Afterlife

My Review:

There wasn’t much I liked about this book. It was written well enough to read until the end, but was full of issues. The love triangle setup was obvious and not very well put together. The tension just wasn’t there.

The plot was abrupt and rocky. The characters were thrust into the plot of the Pures versus the non-Pures.

I didn’t/don’t know enough about main character Dominique to identify with her before mysterious things start happening to her and I don’t really care. Dominique was a weak main character who seemed to do whatever she shouldn’t. The most emotion I got from her was her being worried about dying, but then she immediately sneaks away from her protector without a second thought.

The world building rules were not well defined and confusing. Some people know about the Pures and some don’t? The info dump between Dominique and her parents to explain what was going on was not very clever. Through this info dump we find out that she is The Chosen One, which is such a tired trope and not done well in this book at all.

This book is urban fantasy parading as contemporary fantasy romance. It was short enough and grammatically accurate enough to read all the way through.

 

This novel was published by Amazon Digital Services LLC on 05/15/2012 and is available on Amazon here.

TL;DR Star Rating: 3.00

Links for more information:

Rose Garcia’s Website

Goodreads

Twitter

Book Review: The Inventress by Mary Victoria Johnson

The Inventress by Mary Victoria Johnson

A Young Adult Steampunk Mystery Novel published by Fire & Ice Young Adult Books (07/18/17)

Summary:

Kay Ross, daughter of one of the most hated families in England, hasn’t been able to make many friends. Domino is her only friend. Domino is the genius and the inventor, but she doesn’t always tell Kay all her secrets. Her new invention is going to be the grandest of them all, but she never gets to show the world. The same day Domino lets Kay in on her new security camera invention and lets Kay take her to a society ball, she is murdered. In order to figure out who is to blame, Kay will have to find out more about her own family history and what on earth Domino was inventing.

Keywords:

Steampunk, Mystery, Death, Murder, Friendship, Loyalty, Family, Rivalry, Inventors, Socialite, England, Past, Challenges, Enemies

My Review:

Slow to start, this story soon wound me up in its intrigue. I desperately needed to know what happened to Domino. The more that Johnson expertly showed me the past friendship between Domino and Kay, the more I was sucked into the story. Domino is more than just an inventor – she puts up with Kay and her moods. She would never harm anyone and doesn’t believe in weapons. Who killed Domino? And why? Kay will stop at nothing to figure this mystery out.

I absolutely love stories that have strong friendships and interesting character details. Kay is closed off from her world, choosing to become what those around her think she is – the same power-hungry money-hungry person as her parents.

The steampunk elements were subtle throughout the novel. They were woven into the details of the world. At times, I got a strong historical fiction vibe from when Kay had to dress up to go to society affairs, but for the most part the story centers around Kay and her need to solve Domino’s murder. Everyone is a suspect and the only clues left behind are Domino’s latest invention and a slow trail that keeps including Kay in the mystery.

Disclaimer: I received a free ARC of this novel. This is my honest opinion.

This novel was published by Fire & Ice Young Adult Books on 07/18/2017 and is available on Amazon here.

TL;DR Star Rating: 4.75

Links for more information:

Mary Victoria Johnson’s Website

Goodreads

Twitter

Serenade by Heather McKenzie Blitz

Serenade
Heather McKenzie
(The Nightmusic Trilogy #1)
Published by: Clean Teen Publishing
Publication date: April 17th 2017
Genres: Mystery, Romance, Suspense, Young Adult

Kidnapped and held hostage in the Rockies, a teenage heiress falls for her abductor while her corrupt father and devoted bodyguard fight to get her back. The discovery of true love and dark family secrets turns deadly in this epic coming of age adventure.

Kaya Lowen dreams of living like a normal eighteen-year old, but being heiress to a billion-dollar company has put her life in constant danger. Fiercely guarded by her powerful and corrupt father, she develops close bonds with those who protect her, especially Oliver – a bodyguard who has proven his devotion to her time and again. He wins her heart – until a chance encounter with a mysterious stranger has her questioning everything she believes in. Haunted by true love and reeling from a guilty conscience, Kaya’s world unravels when she’s kidnapped.

Held captive in a rugged wilderness fraught with raging storms, mystical caves and deadly predators, Kaya’s father scours the forest and her bodyguard fights to get her back. But, the discovery of a dark family secret makes Kaya wonder if staying in the arms of her blue-eyed abductor—a captivating stranger with dark secrets of his own – is a safer place to be. At least, that’s what her heart is telling her, her head is saying run…

An epic adventure centered on a smoldering love-triangle, Serenade sings a timeless tale of courage, self-discovery, and life-or-death love that will leave you breathless.

Goodreads / Amazon / Barnes & Noble / iBooks / Kobo

EXCERPT:

This was it, now or never.

I gathered every single ounce of energy I had and steadied my mind to ignore the pain in my foot and the dizziness in my head. Then, with everything I had, I turned and bolted toward the dense forest. The darkness instantly enveloped me. I could see well enough not to run into tree trunks, but branches caught me at every turn. My head felt as if it was spinning like a top, but I forced my legs to keep going. I could hear the men’s voices yelling at each other in an organized manner.

I tripped and found myself on all fours. Get up, girl. There’s nothing wrong with you—get up…

I made it a few more steps before my head connected with a blue spruce, and then I collapsed in a pathetic heap. My arms were so wobbly I could barely wipe at the gash across my forehead. My body was completely failing me. I prayed to God that the dog would just snap my neck and get it over with quickly…

Human footsteps approached. I gulped in some air and tried to push myself up, but the world tipped on its side and I fell with it. Within moments, large hands had my wrists pinned to the ground. I struggled and fought with everything I had left, which wasn’t much.

“Stop fighting,” he said.

His voice created such confusion inside me. I kicked harder.

“Stop… please,” he begged.

His body pinned mine to the ground. I could feel tears welling up in my eyes.

“Please, Kaya, trust me. I won’t let anyone hurt you, I promise.” He leaned forward and pressed his sleeve to my bleeding forehead, dabbing and inspecting it closely while I had no choice but to gaze up him. How could this beautiful man be a kidnapper? It just didn’t fit.

“It’s just a scratch; no stitches required,” he said, voice trailing off as his eyes met mine.

We stayed like that for a while: me on the ground, him kneeling over me, and our line of sight only on each other—until an unmistakable sound broke through the tree tops.

“They’ll find me,” I said softly, wondering if Oliver was in the helicopter circling over our heads.

He positioned his arms under my body, and, in one graceful motion, he picked me up and into his arms. “Just don’t run. Promise me that, please. I’ll keep you safe. You have my word. Okay?”

He held me tightly—protectively—waiting eagerly for my reply with turmoil in his blue eyes. My whole body hurt, and admittedly, I couldn’t have walked another inch. The wolves or that beast would have got to me long before Oliver would have. I was at my kidnapper’s mercy, laying helplessly in his arms and falling harder for him by the second.

“I promise,” I said.

 

Author Bio:

Heather McKenzie is a Canadian author and Serenade is her first novel. A professional singer/songwriter with five albums to date, she has been telling stories through music for years and pulls from her extraordinary experiences as a musician to fuel her passion for creating Young Adult fiction. A rocker at heart, a mom of three, an aspiring painter, and a lover of animals, she is kept grounded by her husband at their home in Edmonton.

Website / Goodreads / Facebook / Twitter

 

GIVEAWAY!
a Rafflecopter giveaway

XBTBanner1

Book Review: The Ashes and the Sparks by Mary Victoria Johnson

The Ashes and the Sparks by Mary Victoria Johnson

A Young Adult Fantasy Novel published by Fire and Ice for Young Adults (10/18/16)

Summary:

“You can hide things as well as you want, but they’ll never go away. Not entirely.” (Kindle Locations 1209-1210).

Jorun spends her nights prowling around underground with a group of other teenagers. They run through a series of tunnels under their isolated island village, pretending to be monsters to scare their family and friends. One day, a boy from a neighboring island makes his way into their secret tunnels with stories of real monsters – invaders in airships. At first nobody believes him, but after the sky is darkened by flying ships, they will have to believe him and do something about the invasion.

Keywords:

Steampunk, Isolation, Small Village, Friendship, Family, Adventure, Danger, War, Technology, Weapons, Fighting, Civilization, Parallel Reality, Tension

My Review:

I have never before read a book where part one and part two worked so well together even though they were very different from each other. The first part of the novel was about a new civilization that had its own customs and traditions. The main character, Jorun, felt different and didn’t quite fit into her society’s customs. This story was interesting, especially with the secret tunnels and the mythology the people told their children. I was intrigued. It was hard to like Jorun at first though, since she spent her nights scaring little kids. She wanted to impress the other tunnelers and didn’t really try to change anything about her role in the village or rebel against the tunnelers when she didn’t agree with what they were doing.

Part two really brought the story and Jorun to life. She became a stronger person and didn’t just follow the traditions of her village or the footsteps of the other teenagers. She became alive and defiant and a true strong main character.

The dynamics of the parallel universe of Europe were fascinating without feeling politically cumbersome. The plot twists totally threw me and completely made sense! Part one dragged a bit, but part two was excellently paced and the climax was very exciting.

It was nice to read a standalone fantasy/steampunk with a good and satisfying ending. I look forward to seeing what Johnson comes up with next.

This novel was published by Fire and Ice for Young Adults on October 18th, 2016 and is available on Amazon here.

TL;DR Star Rating: 4.75

Links for more information:

Mary Victoria Johnson’s Website

Goodreads

Twitter

Book Review: Liar by Winifred Morris

51fvwjaqxll

Liar by Winifred Morris

A YA Novel published by Eastside Gal Publishing (05/02/17)

Summary:

Alex was dropped off with his grandparents in a small Oregon town. It would have been a fresh start if everybody didn’t already know him and what he’s capable of. This is his last chance and he doesn’t want to blow it, but life is never that easy.

Keywords:

Bullies, Family Issues, Abandonment, Probation, New School, Small Town, Grandparents, Oregon, Trouble, Lies, Rage, Fire, Coming of Age, Fear, Capture, Struggle

My Review:

Alex’s story is sometimes hard to read because we see his internal struggle to rise above his situation and his thought processes. He’s a good kid and he’s trying to act within the boundaries he’s given. It’s sad to see his environment press in on him and push him into a corner. Alex reacts both realistically and like many would in his situations. He doesn’t want to be a bad kid. He doesn’t want to start fires and fights. I wanted to see Alex succeed and it was so heartbreaking every time there was a setback in his life or another bully to push him down. Life is never easy, but Alex remained hopeful and resilient, at least some of the time.

I thoroughly enjoyed this realistic coming of age story. It was amazingly well written and engaging and full of good messages that weren’t too obvious. Teens and adults alike can learn from this story and enjoy it as well.

I received an ARC from the author.

This novel was published by Eastside Gal Publishing on May 2nd, 2017 and is available on Amazon here.

TL;DR Star Rating: 4.75

 

Links for more information:

Winifred Morris’s website

Goodreads

Book Review: Configured: Book #1 in the Configured Trilogy by Jenetta Penner

51z4hgvaicl

Configured: Book #1 in the Configured Trilogy by Jenetta Penner

A YA Sci-Fi/Dystopian Novel published by Amazon Digital Services LLC (10/20/16)

Summary:

“Manning reminds us that over one hundred years ago, the human race risked extinction from a deadly flu the government called Aves, which crossed from birds to humans. Only a limited amount of both species survived the Collapse.” (Page 52).

Avlyn Lark wants to live a normal life, but her emotions and her secret hacker ability won’t let her blend in or be content in her highly dystopian society. After her placement in the high level GenTech corp. she starts to notice that not everything is as it seems. If given the choice to join the rebels, will she give up a good job, steady income, and potential for a mate?

Keywords:

Dystopian, Love, No Emotions, Separation, Independence, Twin, Coding, Friendship, Competition, Genetic Experimentation, Plans, Societal Expectations, Rebellion, Freedom, Questions, Curiosity

My Review:

Avlyn’s thought process and curiosity throughout everything that happens is the most interesting aspect of this novel. The dystopian society is very stereotypical, though Penner does a good job bringing the world to life. The plot is fairly standard for a dystopian YA, even a bit bland as we wait for the action to catch up with the main character and finally, about two thirds of the way in, it does! The action was quite exciting and I read to the end fairly quickly once I’d gotten to this part.

Avlyn’s unique intelligence and ability to connect with software was very easy and simple. The lack of description and detail about hacking or coding was a bit disappointing.

I didn’t quite believe that a rebellion on the scale presented in this book could exist in such a society with all that technology, especially within the society itself. There was never an explanation of how the rebels infiltrated high end buildings/offices/people or how they obtained the same tech as the Direction.

Ultimately this book was easy to read, but didn’t add anything to the dystopian pile of YA and I won’t be reading onward in this series.

This novel was published by Amazon Digital Services LLC on October 20th, 2016 and is available on Amazon here.

TL;DR Star Rating: 3.50

Links for more information:

Jenetta Penner’s Website

Goodreads

Twitter

Book Review: Serenade by Heather McKenzie

51yg4cvjil-_sx331_bo1204203200_

Serenade by Heather McKenzie

A YA Novel published by Clean Teen Publishing (04/17/17)

Summary:

Kaya lives a guarded life as the heiress to a medical company worth a fortune, but her father doesn’t ever want to relinquish control and will go to insane lengths to make sure his greed is satisfied.

Kaya wants to be normal, but when she’s constantly surrounded by her male bodyguards she doesn’t have a chance, until her father consents to let her run in a weekend long 125km foot race. All is well as she is fiercely protected until one by one her guards drop out of the race. Even her new Fiancé bodyguard must leave her to finish herself, but before she can make it to the end, she is kidnapped.

Keywords:

Foot Race, Ignorance, Bodyguard, Protection, Discovery, Past, Family Secrets, Corruption, Power, Money, Abduction, Fight, Motivation, Love, Friendship, Heiress

My Review:

Female heroine. Check. Adventure with high stakes. Check. Strong and powerful story with intrigue and secrets. Check.

I loved nearly everything about this story. As soon as I was fully engaged (at the mention of Death Race), I couldn’t put this one down. It had everything I hope for and love in a YA book.

Though I roll my eyes at instant love, the powerful bond of the love in this story swept me away and I believed it with every fiber of my imagination, just as Kaya does with every fiber of her soul. I’ve never read an instalove that I could believe in like that in Serenade.

The story was solid and the plot (when it got going) was so well developed and rolled out like a great action movie. Subplots kept me questioning every secret.

The best part of this book, however, was Kaya (and maybe the powerful storytelling/writing style). Kaya comes from a rich and entitled background, but she is not a spoiled princess. Yes she hurts. Yes she complains. Yes she gets emotionally overwhelmed. And of course she makes wrong choices! She’s only a teenager after all. But she is resilient and thoughtful and never gives in. She is logical and emotional and I can’t wait for more of her!

The writing style and powerful way the author can showcase emotions makes me eager to read anything McKenzie will write next- fiction, nonfiction, picture books, or anything.

I received an ARC of this novel.

This novel was published by Clean Teen Publishing on April 17th, 2017 and is available on Amazon here.

TL;DR Star Rating: 5.00

Links for more information:

Heather McKenzie’s Website

Twitter

Goodreads

Book Review: Influence (Influence Series) (Volume 1) by David R Bernstein

51zn3kpgill

Influence (Influence Series) (Volume 1) by David R Bernstein

A YA Sci-Fi Novel published by Amazon Digital Services LLC (08/15/16)

Summary:

In this dystopian American society, Kaylin stands out, even amongst others with similar powers. Her ability, to influence others, is highly sought after by warring factions. She’s been on the run with her best friend for years, but will her powers of empathy change all that?

Keywords:

Self-reliance, self-esteem, friendship, betrayal, trust, unique, abilities, powers, influence, thought power, thought control, mind control

My Review:

Where only teenagers have the ability to “push” others’ consciousness to do something or feel something, this society is set up much like other young adult dystopian novels. There’s the female main character who doesn’t know the reaches of her own power. There are the factions that want to use her for their own evil plans. Where Influence is different is with its well-developed characters and satisfyingly detailed world building.

I knew exactly how a “Push” worked and was shown many possibilities for how and why one would be used. I knew Kaylin and her best friend Amanda almost as well as they knew each other and loved how empathetic Kaylin was!

Where the story lost me a bit was with the plot details and the romantic element. The sweet romance between kaylin and Farren was stereotypical for a dystopian teen read, but I enjoyed that even though this romance was based on mutual first attraction (duh!) that the romance grew slowly and steadily throughout the book and didn’t end with too much of the romance taking over the plot! The romance and action were well balanced.

Some elements of the plot seemed a bit convenient and somewhat unexplained, but the book moved at a nice fast pace and kept me interested in the characters, their world, and their ultimate goal the entire time. The plot twist at the end was a bit rough and though all the elements to tie it in were there, they were a bit too loose for my liking.

I loved the tease at the end and appreciated that this book contained both a full and satisfying ending while making the reader want to read more and find out what happens to Kaylin next!

This novel was published by Amazon Digital Services LLC on August 15th, 2016 and is available on Amazon here.

TL;DR Star Rating: 4.0

Links for more information:

David Bernstein’s Website and Blog

Goodreads