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Blog Tour Review - Service Model by Adrian Tchaikovsky

Blog Tour Review - Service Model by Adrian Tchaikovsky To fix the world they first must break it further. Humanity is a dying breed, utterly reliant on artificial labor and service. When a domesticated robot gets a nasty little idea downloaded into their core programming, they murder their owner. The robot then discovers they can also do something else they never did before: run away. After fleeing the household, they enter a wider world they never knew existed, where the age-old hierarchy of humans at the top is disintegrating, and a robot ecosystem devoted to human wellbeing is finding a new purpose. There is so much to love in Service Model, but one of the things I most love about it is the peculiar blend of charming innocence and insightful cynicism. Uncharles the domestic robot is such a simple soul (though he would state that he has no soul and this is an inaccurate description). He approaches the end of the world with optimism and hope, or whatever equivalent to these emotions h

Blog Tour Review - Second Star to the Left by Megan Van Dyke


Blog Tour Review - Second Star to the Left by Megan Van Dyke

Tinker Bell, banished from her homeland for doing the unthinkable, selling the hottest drug in Neverland—pixie dust—wants absolution.

Determined to find a way home, Tink doesn’t hesitate to follow the one lead she has, even if that means seducing a filthy pirate to steal precious gems out from under his…hook.

Captain Hook believes he’s found a real treasure in Tink. That is, until he recovers from her pixie dust laced kiss with a curse that turns the seas against him. With his ship and reputation at the mercy of raging storms, he tracks down the little minx and demands she remove the curse. Too bad she can’t.

However, the mermaid queen has a solution to both of their problems, if Tink and Hook will work together to retrieve a magical item for her.

As they venture to the mysterious Shrouded Isles to find the priceless treasure, their shared nemesis closes in. However, his wrath is nothing compared to the realization that achieving their goal may mean losing something they never expected to find—each other.

This was my first year as a judge for the BBNYA, the Book Blogger Novel of the Year Awards, on which there is more information at the end of this review. I didn't get this novel in the first round, where we had short excerpts, or the second round where we had a whole chapter to judge on, but when I saw it on the list for the final and read the blurb I immediately requested it for a full read. 

I mean, it's a spicy romance featuring Tinkerbell and Captain Hook! Of course I had to read it!

And I loved it, absolutely loved it. Out of all of the books I read as part of the BBNYA competition, this has probably been the one I recommended most to people. 

Now first thing to tackle is the, well, lets call it the logistics here. So, Tinkerbell and other fairies are, in this story, about the size of humans. A couple of people I mentioned the book to immediately asked about that. She's not the fist sized fairy of the Disney cartoon or other film versions. She has no real trouble strapping her wings down and passing as human. 

There are so many delicious romance tropes here. At the core it's a story of enemies forced to work together because each has something the other wants. Enemies having to try and seduce each other, to get something from the other, or to win their cooperation in their schemes. Enemies who slowly learn that the person they hate is maybe not quite that awful after all.

This is a young Captain Hook, a pirate captain for sure, and a man of some reputation and renown but not quite the proven terror he becomes in Peter Pan. He starts out as a villainous rogue, but like all the best villains there is a reason why he is the way he is. He has strong motivations and a rich background and is easily able to win over the reader's heart without ever losing that essential roguishness to his nature. He cares about his ship and his crew and will do anything for them, and there are other, much worse, pirates out there. 

Tinkerbell starts from a fall from grace, an expulsion from fairyland. But as the story unfolds and we learn more about what actually happens we see that there is a lot more to it than first seems. She has that stubborn streak, that petulance that is such an important part of her character, but from her point of view we see her sympathetically too. She's been wronged and she'll do anything to find her way home. 

I was enthralled watching them circle each other, as enemies slowly turn into lovers and we see their affection growing from the sexual to something more endearing. The story gets quite spicy at times, sexy without ever straying into gratuitous territory. I thought it got the balance just about right (though I wouldn't have complained if it had been a little more explicit at times!)

Mixed in with the romance is a very fun adventure that has all the feel of Neverland to it. There are mermaids and pirates, desperate fights and powerful magics, curses and mystical islands to navigate. It has all the familiar elements of a magical swashbuckling adventure that had me gripped throughout. 

Megan Van Dyke has taken a very familiar cast of characters and wound the clock back to before we know them. With that, she's given us a story that is exciting in every sense of the world, feels true to the source material without ever resorting to cheap exploitation. It's fast paced, fun and fantastic!


BBNYA is a yearly competition where book bloggers from all over the world read and score books written by indie authors, ending with 15 finalists and one overall winner.

If you want some more information about BBNYA, check out the BBNYA Website or take a peek over on Twitter @BBNYA_Official. BBNYA is brought to you in association with the @Foliosociety (if you love beautiful books, you NEED to check out their website!) and the book blogger support group @The_WriteReads.


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