ARC Review: A Castle in the Clouds by Kerstin Gier

A Castle in the Clouds was an impulse download on Edelweiss because I’d been experiencing SFF burnout, and I am so glad that I picked this book up. It’s funny and smart with a dash of cute, and I adored my time reading it!

“Legend had it that the hotel was haunted, and I could well believe it.”

Originally released in German back in 2017, this US edition was translated by Romy Fursland and is a fast-paced and engaging read. Told in Sophie’s perspective, we follow her life as a new intern at a secluded old hotel in the Swiss mountains. She’s quit school and is embarking on her own, trying to find her path and hoping that this year-long post will provide some of that clarity.

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Review: If We Were Villains by M.L. Rio

Expectation is the root of all heartache – William Shakespeare

Whoever recommended this book to me… I just want to talk.

As a former Thespian and lifelong lover of Shakespeare, If We Were Villains is a book I should have loved. So many friends spoke so highly of it that I went in with tough-to-meet expectations, and unfortunately, they were not met. I think this is a book people will either love or hate; I should have DNF’d it early on to save myself the frustration but I was curious about the mystery (but on that front was left largely wanting.)

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Capturing the Devil (Stalking Jack the Ripper #4) by Kerri Maniscalco

Sigh. Despite my deep dislike for Escaping from Houdini, which seems to grow stronger each day, I was really hopeful and excited to see how this series would end. While I am not as disappointed in Capturing the Devil as I expected to be (I think lowering my expectations may have saved me here), I am left feeling rather conflicted about my thoughts overall. There are things I loved about this book, but also things I didn’t.

The Good

Sir Isaac Mewton. Need I say more?

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Escaping from Houdini (Stalking Jack the Ripper #3) by Kerri Maniscalco

*sighs* As much as it pains me to say it… I was disappointed with this book. In terms of the mystery’s plotting, Maniscalco did an incredible job crafting a good mystery that kept me guessing. But what I enjoy most about the series is the characters, and I was left frustrated.

“I inquire once more, which will you lose before the week is through? Your heart? Your head? Perhaps, you will lose your life, your very soul to this magical traveling show.”

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Hunting Prince Dracula (Stalking Jack the Ripper #2) by Kerri Maniscalco

It is rare that I love the second book more than the first, but Hunting Prince Dracula is one of those instances! The writing is beautiful, engaging, and fast-paced… I devoured this book in one sitting on a hot afternoon. I read along with the audiobook, and I have to say that the narrator (Nicola Barber) is incredible – highly recommend the audio for this series!

“Flesh-and-blood men were the real monsters, and they could be cut down easily enough.”

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