Immunity (Contagion #2) by Erin Bowman

Contagion was one of my top 5 reads of 2018, and this sequel was on my highly anticipated needs list for the year. Immunity delivers a solid, action-packed, and satisfying end to this duology.

Please note that this review contains spoilers for the first book, so proceed with caution if you haven’t read Contagion yet!

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Stalking Jack the Ripper (Stalking Jack the Ripper #1) by Kerri Maniscalo

“Death was not prejudiced by mortal things such as station or gender. It came for kings and queens and prostitutes alike, often leaving the living with regrets.”

Maniscalo’s debut novel is deliciously macabre and a must-read for fans of murder mysteries and historical fiction. While I found the twists to be predictable, this was an enjoyable read and I’m excited to continue the series!

I normally put my content warnings at the bottom of my reviews, but I feel like it is important to note up front that the book opens with a black and white photo of a corpse (there is also a photo of someone that died from leprosy further in the book) and the main character conducting an autopsy. This is a dark and gritty tale that isn’t for the faint of heart and I would hate for someone to pick this up expecting a fun historical fiction story (which it is!) and being turned off by the gore. The bottom of the official book synopsis mentions historical photos but in case this wasn’t what you were thinking…

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The Phantom Forest by Liz Kerin

Interview with Liz Kerin Novel19 Class

Friends, I loved reading this debut fantasy novel so much! The Phantom Forest has all the ingredients that I live for in a good story: rich worldbuilding with an emphasis on religion and lyrical writing that sucked me in on the first page. This is a dark, gruesome, and bloody story that won’t be for everyone so please do check the content warnings at the bottom of the review.

“In this place meant for the dead, she finally felt the weight of life, of connection, of eternity. Nothing was ever lost.”

I had so many questions while reading this book, but not in a bad way if that makes sense. The world the Kerin crafted for us is so intricately disturbing that it is like a car wreck that we cannot look away from. Who are these people? What are they being punished for? The worldbuilding is both slow and all at once as the reader is thrust into the deep end of the world but never given too much at any given time. I was hungry for more much like the Savage hungers.

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Girl Gone Viral by Arvin Ahmadi

Hello, world and welcome to my review of Girl Gone Viral as part Penguin’s Blog Tour! I was so excited to be able to read and share my thoughts on this book with you all. Girl Gone Viral is a fantastic coming of age contemporary that includes technology that really roots itself into how tech and social media are a big part of growing up today.

“Be careful putting yourself out there; privacy is hard to get back.”

The book is told in the first person perspective of Opal Tal, a 17-year old coding genius who is determined to find the answers to her father’s disappearance seven years earlier. She’s tried to move on, reinventing herself as Opal Hopper to hide from her past in anonymity, but when a competition comes up with the prize of meeting reclusive tech genius Howie Mendelsohn she can’t help but enter for a chance to meet him and get the answers she is sure he can provide.

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The Gilded Wolves (The Gilded Wolves #1) by Roshani Chokshi

“Everywhere he looked, he was surrounded by gilded wolves. And for whatever reason, it made him feel perfectly at home. Wolves were everywhere. In politics, on thrones, in beds. They cut their teeth on history and grew fat on war. Not that Séverin was complaining. It was just that, like other wolves, he wanted his share.”

I am a sucker for historical fantasy, and The Gilded Wolves delivers an action-packed story with a diverse cast of characters that I treasured with every ounce of my being. A secret society that pulls the strings of society (Illuminati?!)? Hunting for artifacts? Magic and technological invention when the world was on the cusp of Industrialism? Heck. Yes. If you are in the mood for an adventure with a precious found family, this book might be for you!

It’s Paris, 1889. The world is at the brink of the Industrial Revolution, but there is another kind of technology that goes back way further. “The art of Forging is as old as civilization itself,” and is the magic system of the book. Those born with the ability manifest it by their 13th birthday and can either influence the mind or matter.

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