I pre-ordered this book months ago so I could get the special pre-order incentive, which was a six chapter bonus starring Lara and Aren from the first two novels of The Bridge Kingdom series.

The Inadequate Heir runs almost concurrently from about midway through The Bridge Kingdom and spans to the end of The Traitor Queen.


Keris is Lara's brother. And the crown prince of Maridrina. Both things that he hates.


Keris has always bucked the system that seems against him. He didn't take part in ruling the kingdom--figuring that either one of his older brothers would live to rule, or he'd be killed before he could take the throne.


When, by some strange twist of fate, Keris runs across a mysterious Valcottan woman one night in the city, he becomes intrigued by her sharp tongue and clever mind. The two of them swap ideals, give each other intel, and fall for one another never knowing who the other really is.


If you've read Traitor Queen, you know the gist of Keris and Zarrah. Or at least you think you do. In truth, their story is far, far deeper than what happens in the first two novels in the series.


One thing that I absolutely loved was that Jensen ratched up the heat in this one! Not that the prior two weren't great (I thoroughly enjoyed them), but I really felt like there was little payoff. That is not the case here.


I have always had a love for Romeo & Juliet esque romances, and this story doesn't disappoint. While we know the overall world plots and things happening amongst the world, getting to dive in and see how Keris fell in love with Zarrah was incredible.


And.... Jensen left it on a cliffhanger. I'm dying to read the next!


Abbie

Earlier this year, I signed up for Fairyloot's adult book box. I was super excited to see what kinds of books they would send out. First up is The Atlas Six, which fit the month's theme of dark academia.

Admittedly, I have never read anything in this genre. I began reading The Ninth House by Leigh Bardugo, but didn't get very far. I wasn't sure what to expect with this one.


This story begins when the mysterious Atlas appears at Libby's university graduation with an offer she can't refuse. Her rival, Nico, is given the same offer. The two have been at each others' throats for years. They have the same magical gifts and each tries to outdo the other. So when the offer is presented, Libby can't let Nico get one up on her.


The proposal is simple. Six initiates enter, spending a year learning under the Society--a group that maintains the lost library of Alexandria--but only five make it to initiation.


It is an interesting premise. From there, we are introduced to the other four--Tristan, Parisa, Reina, and Callum. Each have their own unique gifts. The six of them are to live in a manor house, learning about the mysteries of the universe.


What's more is that they learn the truth about initiation: one of the must die.


This novel had a very interesting premise. I'm sure that for those who enjoy dark academia, this was a great novel. There's intrigue and mystery. Magic and mayhem. But it lacked one crucial thing for me: romance.


Oh sure, there's some flirting and sex on the page, but it's definitely not up to my personal preferences. The story remains wholly political as each of the six tries to find their place within this group of initiates while also seeking out knowledge and furthering their own gifts.


Again, for someone who is a fan of the genre, I think they'd really like it. As for me? Well, the ending felt like it was just leading into a sequel with very little pay off. Will I read the next one? Maybe. But I'm not dying to get my hands on it.


Abbie

  • Abbie Smith

Y'all. Do you ever read something that absolutely shocks you in the best way possible?

A friend told me about Praise by Sara Cate. She outlined the premise of the story, what tropes it featured, and that she was so surprised by how well done it was. One thing I love to see in books is kink representation, but in a lot of ways, it's not quite done right.


Let me tell you. Praise is worth every. bit. of. the hype.


Charlie has to go to her ex-boyfriend's father's house to get her half of the deposit from their apartment. Emerson, her ex's dad, is a super rich dude who has made his millions in providing a place for people to explore their deepest inner fantasies. He's just about given up on finding the right woman.


His office is empty when Charlie walks in so she waits. When he arrives, he thinks she's one the girls sent from his service to be his submissive. "Aren't you supposed to be kneeling?" Charlie is like... what? But she does it. He praises her, and she finds herself surprisingly enjoying it.


This is such a fun meet cute. From there, Emerson gives Charlie a job and shenanigans ensue. I have to say, this is one of the best written books I have ever read including a praise kink. I could tell that the author really did the work to make sure the relationship was portrayed as healthy. There are so many little moments through this that melted my heart.


I cannot recommend this one enough if you're looking for a praise kink, bdsm friendly romance novel. I literally read this in less than a day.


Abbie