This Rebel Reviews: A Haunted History of Invisible Women by Leanna Renee Hieber and Andrea Janes

I went into this book thinking it was going to be just a bunch of different ghost stories about different women though history and it is but also it isn’t it goes so much deeper into the struggles and stigma of being a women, why even in death we have been exploited, punished, romanticized, and made silent but also how in death we are given voices of our own. This book explores the power of folklore, ghost stories and legends. It shows the power of stories. How important they are to us. How they are shaped and reshaped over each telling and how they will continue to be. This book is so well researched and both authors have a great understanding of the subject they are writing about. The style of both writers is uniquely different and their styles play off each other perfectly with Leanna’s chapters being more personal and emotional and Janes more scholarly. I love the black and white pictures scattered throughout the book.

Thank you so much to Leanna and Kensington books for sending me an ARC. All opinions in this review are my own.

Rating: 5 stars

This Rebel Reviews Wraith by Mere Joyce

This book had much better balance of camp projects and character relationships and growth than Revenant did. I really felt for both Cal and Meander in Wraith because of that hug scene at at the end of book 2. We learn a lot about the background characters and their abilities in this book. Mainly because Meander and Cal both partnered with someone else on year of end projects. I was so happy this year camp was set in Greenland. I have always wanted to go and love the author’s descriptions of the landscape. We get to really see Dylan’s abilities in this book which I have been waiting for since book one. Most of the campers have turned 16 which is the age when your full sender powers kick in. Everyone is trying to understand the changes that have happened since they turned sixteen and what it means for their abilities. One scene I didn’t see coming at all. I love this series so much. It keeps getting better and better. I love this found family of ghost hunters so much. I love Cal and Meander and they are OTP. I will end on this note. Go read this series.

Rating: 5 stars

This Rebel Reviews: Perilous Prophecy by Leanna Renee Hieber

This is the prequel to the Strangely Beautiful doulogy and in my opinion you should definitely read the doulogy before the prequel. You meet Beatrice(the main character of Perilous Prophecy)in book 2 of the Strangely Beautiful Doulogy were she plays a major part in the story. In this book you learn all about Beatrice and the Cairo Guard she lead and more about Persephone.

In this book unlike Strangely Beautiful when you only see the London guard young for a chapter and then grown up the next chapter we get to see the Cairo Guard learn how to use their new powers and work as a unit. This book has Persephone chapters which I wasn’t expecting. It really helped me understand her character and the decisions she made throughout her life. You get to see London Guard some which was nice surprise. This book gives you all you could want in a backstory. It answers almost all the questions I had after finishing the Strangely Beautiful doulogy. I have a feeling the rest will be answered in the last book of the series.

Rating: 5 stars

This Rebel Reviews: Revenant by Mere Joyce

Camp Wanagi is a camp for teens who can see ghosts and/or interact with ghosts. All the campers have unique powers and none are the same. This is Cal’s second year at Camp Wanagi and he has keep in contact with all his friends especially Meander. Let Camp Wanagi Year Two begin.

I love Shade book 1 in the series so it wasn’t a surprise that I loved book 2 just as much. This year’s camp was a little different because it is their second year. But all the bonding, friendship, drama, and ghosts are back. I love the main character Cal and his love interest Meander so much. This book like the first one is all in Cal’s POV and I love watching him slowing fall for Meander and unsureness of first like/love. Dylan, Mim and Kornelia are all back and this was the one part of the book I didn’t like. Their love triangle which was started in book 1 continues into book 2.

All the campers are from all around the world and all different backgrounds. It is so wonderful to see this in a book. I love that this book had disability representation. I don’t want to spoil anything so I will leave you with three more things: The Ghost Hunts. That Ending. That Hug. Seriously read this series. It is amazing.

Rating: 5 stars

Out There: Into the Queer New Yonder by Various Authors and Edited by Saundra Mitchell

Genre: Young Adult Science Fiction Anthology

I am not a big anthology reader. They are hard to review, the stories are sometimes incomplete or like a book idea smashed into a short story. Writing a short story has an art to it and I wish I could say that every author in this anthology had that art but I can’t. This book was sent in my favorite book box Rainbow Crate as this year’s June book and am really happy they picked it as I would have never bought it on my own. Below is my opinion on each story and it’s rating.

Doublers by Alex London~ I love this story. It was so unique, the writing was amazing and I adored the mains. This was perfect. 5 stars

Aesthetically Hungry by Mato J. Steger ~ I loved the idea of this story but I found the characters forgettable. 3 stars

The Rift by Claire Kanin~ This was really unique and the main character was one of my all time favorites in the collection. It had great world building and I never felt lost even with the amount of information given. It was one of the best stories in the book in terms of writing, story, and characters. 5 stars

Renaissance by Emma K. Ohland ~ This was such a great story and has one of the best romances in the book. In terms of Science Fiction it wasn’t the most creative but it was written so well and I loved the characters so much it didn’t bother me in the least. I didn’t care for the ending as it felt rushed. 4 stars

Like Sunshine, Like Concrete by Z.R. Ellor~ This author is good. He could have made this story just another action packed superhero story. He didn’t. 4 stars

Translating the Machine by Nita Tyndall~ This was a really good story and love the idea behind it. 4 stars

Reshadow by Adam Sass~ This story surprised me. I didn’t see it coming. I don’t want to say any more about it because you need to go in blind. 5 stars

The Department of Homegoing Affairs by Kalyan Bayron ~ I really love this story and love how it handled grief and letting go but it felt more paranormal then science fiction. 4 stars

The Undeniable Price of Everything by Z Brewer~This was one of my least favorite and it failed as a short story. It didn’t make much sense and the author didn’t think it though. I hated that the main character’s best friend keep touching him when he told him not to or pulled away from his touch. If someone tells you not to touch them don’t touch them. It made me upset that the author included this in their story and then didn’t address it. 1 star

Present: Tense by Jim McCarthy~ This was another miss for me. Like huge miss. No one was acting like the situation required. It was a disaster only revealed by the stories before and after it. 1 star

Nick and Bodhi by Naomi Kanakia ~This is one of the worst short stories I have ever read in terms of writing, characters and plot. It was a complete story but it was so bad. I will never read it again or anything this author ever writes. 1 star

Crash Landing by Mason Deaver~ Thank God for Mason Deaver and their writing magic. Crash Landing was my second favorite story in the book. It was cute, fun, and the two mains are two of my favorites in this collection. 5 stars

Beauty Sleep by Alechia Dow~ I wish this had been a book or novella. It was such a great idea. I love fairy tale retellings. This Sleeping Beauty retelling was so unique but it was incomplete and rushed. 4 stars

H O M E by K. Ancrum ~ and welcome to the best most perfect story in this collection. It was amazing and I loved every minute of it and it gave me ALL THE FEELs. I connected so much with the mains and their love was so beautiful. 5 stars

Concerto by Adbi Nazemian ~ This story was so sad but so sweet. Definitely one of the best in the collection. 5 stars

Fractal Eyes by Ugochi M. Agoawike~ This story needed way more world building to work. It starts strong and then falls apart. I liked the idea but the execution was flawed. 3.5 stars.

Nobody Cares Who You Kiss at the End of the World by Leah Johnson~ the premise was similar to Present: Tense but unlike the author of that story Leah Johnson is a master at her craft and created what they couldn’t. A great short story with characters who feel deeply and react like logical people. 5 stars

Overall I am going to give this a 4 star overall rating. I felt the 5 and 4 star stories far outweighed the horrible three 1 star stories.

This Rebel Reviews: The Darkly Luminous Fight For Persephone Parker by Leanna Renee Hieber

Genre: Adult Gaslight Fantasy, Gothic Romance

THERE ARE SPOILERS FROM BOOK 1 IN THIS REVIEW

THIS IS YOUR FINAL WARNING TO STOP READING

Percy and Alexi are engaged and the guard has welcomed her with open arms. I was so happy everything was made right. I love Percy and Alexi’s wedding scene. It was so beautiful. I loved seeing Percy and Alexi on their honeymoon. I loved see their contentment and joy in each other’s company. They have both lived lonely lives and am so happy they finally found each other. I loved that the Guard got a break and love what they all did with it especially Jane(love this girl so much, I loved seeing more of her in this book and finding out the mystery of her names). Percy really finds her voice in this book and love that she is coming out of her shell. Alexi and Percy have some stumbles in this book as every couple does. Alexi struggles with his emotions a lot in this book. He has never been in love before and learning to stop trying to control everything and learning how to handle over protectiveness and fear was difficult. The scene between Micheal(my favorite character of the Guard, he is the sweetest and the heart of the group)and Alexi about controlling his emotions and treating Percy as an equal not someone that needs saving and hidden away from danger was a favorite of mine. That final battle. So many emotions. One scene in this book make me very uncomfortable and I didn’t think it was needed because it was really creepy. You will know the scene when you read it. This was my least favorite book of Leanna’s and if you are new to her writing don’t start with this series. I recommend you start with the A Magic Most Foul trilogy or The Eterna Files trilogy.

Rating: 4 stars

This Rebel Reviews: The Strangely Beautiful Tale of Miss Percy Parker by Leanna Renee Hieber

Genre: Adult Gaslight Fantasy, Gothic

This book begins with a group of six teenagers in England that have been chosen to become the new members of The Guard a secret organization that keeps the spiritual world separated from the mortal world.

I love the main character Percy I really connected with her insecurities and her loneliness and wanting someone to finally see her. Her love interest Alexi is a true gothic hero. He is moody, always wants to be in control, solitary and I loved him from the first scene. Alexi and Percy have a pretty big age gap(19 and 34) think Jane and Rochester from Jane Eyre. I love the romance between Percy and Alexi she was in love at first sight but it took a bit longer for Alexi to let himself love. The dance scene had me swooning. It was so romantic. I loved watching these 2 lonely people find each other. But this isn’t just a love story. There is an Ancient Prophecy, the relationships between the six guard members is tangled, complex, and dramatic and ghosts ghosts everywhere. Leanna’s books always speak to my soul and her books are always full of love, friendship, family and fighting against the darkness in the world. I might have already devoured book 2.

Rating: 5 stars

This Rebel Reviews: Northanger Abbey by Jane Austen

Northanger Abbey

Genre: Classic

Northanger Abbey was a book that should never been published and the only reason it was was because Jane Austen’s death prevented her from reworking and rewriting it. This book will never be heralded for being her best novel as it is missing the depth, character development and plotting of her later work but it is still a must read. I have read it 5 times and It never fails to charm me and make me laugh. It also has a super cute romance. In two characters in NA(Henry Tinny and Isabelle Trophe) I feel the shadows of the characters she would create in her later work like Henry Crawford and Miss Bingley. One thing that Austen never fails at is her amazing understanding of human nature. Her stories may take place in regency era England but her characters are still so relevant today. We have all meet a man like John Trophe who only wants to talk about how smart he, how fast his car goes and how he has more important friends and connects then anyone. I don’t recommend Northanger Abbey as your first Austen. I think Pride and Prejudice or Sense and Sensibility the best to start with.

Rating: 5 stars

This Rebel Reviews: Wrath, Goddess, Sing by Maya Deane

Wrath, Goddess,Sing is a beautifully written retelling of Achilles but with a twist. Achilles is a transgender women and her mother goddess Athena gives her the women’s body she has always wanted to get her to agree to fight in the Trojan War.

Masterfully written and the story really flowed and the author had great world building.The writing is what really stands out for me in this book. I really enjoyed the story that was until the end which I disliked so much I took off a whole star in rating. It was really weird and felt the author feel into the trap many author’s fall into when writing a retelling giving an ending that doesn’t fit the story. I also felt the author didn’t need to list the god or goddesses every name from every nation whenever they came into the story.

Achilles wasn’t always the easiest character to like let alone love but her strength, courage, and love for her chosen family won me over to her side. She was flawed and I love that. I love a lot of the side characters especially her cousin Patroklos and his wife Meryapi and Achille’s two horses. I do recommend you look up trigger warnings before you read this book. If you love LGBTQIAP+ books and greek mythology this a must read even if I didn’t like the ending I am still happy I read this awesome book and recommend you do as well.

Rating 4 stars

This Rebel Reviews:Year of the Reaper by Makiia Lucier

Year of the Reaper captivated me from the first page. The main character Cas has been though a lot of both emotional and physical pain and one thing this book is about is healing. I love the hero and heroine and their romance. They have such deep connection. Plus their meeting was the first fantasy meet cute I have read. I was worried about the world building this being a fantasy standalone but it was really well done. I love that this whole book was told from Cas’s Point of View which is rare for me because I always feel like I am missing parts of the story but never felt like that in this book.

This book had some great twists I didn’t see coming. This book really shows the strength of the human spirit and no matter what life throws at us we can survive and come out the other side stronger. I also like how this book explored how life and loss can change you. The ending was perfection.

Rating: 5 stars