Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Book Review: Black Widow Red Vengeance by Margaret Stohl

Book #2 of the Black Widow series
Genre: YA Marvel Universe
Publication: October 2016 by Marvel Press
Acquisition: received an ARC at ALA 2016

BLACK WIDOW: RED VENGEANCE is the action-packed sequel tothe instant New York Times best-seller, BLACK WIDOW: FOREVER RED, penned by #1New York Times best-selling author Margaret Stohl. This time, Stohl takesreaders inside the minds of Marvel's most cunning and dangerous spies-BlackWidow and Red Widow-delving deeper into their powers and will reveal more thanever before about the infamous assassin and her fledgling hero-in-training.
(from Goodreads)
5 / 5 Stars


Honestly, I didn't think I would enjoy this series as much as I am. I mean, I love the Marvel Universe and I loved the Avengers movies but there is only so much, witty banter, explosions and total mass destruction I can take before I get a little glassy eyed.

Or so I thought.

Ok, so the books have a little less explosions (thank you!) and the banter is mostly all Tony Stark's but wow this story is intense - and the details that went into Natasha's back story? Fantastic.

As with my love for book 1, my book 2 loves stems from a place of fandom love. I grew up with Superman and Batman but I never connected to the DC world the way I've connected to Marvel. S.H.I.E.L.D. is one of my all time favorite shows and Agent Coulson? Clark Gregg for life! Natasha aka The Black Widow has always been a bit of a mystery to me, having never read her comics. I can't help but picture Scarlett Johansson as I read Red Vengeance (and Robert Downey Jr, and Clark Gregg) and I really think my reading experience was enhanced because I had these visuals helping to paint the story in my mind.

Ok, fandom fangirling aside, Black Widow Red Vengeance was an excellent book. I loved the writing, I loved the story and I loved that so much of a universe I already love was incorporated so well into Natasha's new stories. Ava still got to me a bit but I'm warming up to her.

I really thought this was a duology but the way this one ended - I can't imagine the story not continuing. Not so much a cliff hanger as a shear drop - like, boom! Yeah, it was intense (also loved that part ;)

If Marvel is your thing, if S.H.I.E.L.D. is your bae then this series is for you. And, if mystery, intrigue, superheros and kick ass female characters is your thing, this series is also for you :)

Monday, October 17, 2016

Book Review: Black Widow: Forever Red by Margaret Stohl

Book #1 of the Black Widow series
Genre: YA Marvel Universe
Publication: October 2015 by Marvel Press
Acquisition: received as a gift

Enter the world of the Avengers’ iconic master spy…

Natasha Romanoff is one of the world’s most lethal assassins. Trained from a young age in the arts of death and deception, Natasha was given the title of Black Widow by Ivan Somodorov, her brutal teacher at the Red Room, Moscow’s infamous academy for operatives.

Ava Orlova is just trying to fit in as an average Brooklyn teenager, but her life has been anything but average.The daughter of a missing Russian quantum physicist, Ava was once subjected to a series of ruthless military experiments—until she was rescued by Black Widow and placed under S.H.I.E.L.D. protection. Ava has always longed to reconnect with her mysterious savior, but Black Widow isn’t really the big sister type.

Until now.

When children all over Eastern Europe begin to go missing, and rumors of smuggled Red Room tech light up the dark net, Natasha suspects her old teacher has returned—and that Ava Orlova might be the only one who can stop him. To defeat the madman who threatens their future, Natasha and Ava must unravel their pasts. Only then will they discover the truth about the dark-eyed boy with an hourglass tattoo who haunts Ava’s dreams…
(from Goodreads)
5 / 5 Stars

So, I went into this one with pretty high expectations. I love Marvel and I love love love S.H.I.E.L.D. -- Agent Coulson for life!


I wasn't disappointed at all. In fact, it was better then I was expecting.

Black Widow, aka Agent Romanoff, aka Natasha Romanova was a bit of a unknown for me. All I really knew about her came from the Avengers movies and she didn't get a lot of screen time. However, she is one of those characters you just knew had to come with a pretty hefty back story. In Forever Red the backstory is the story - front and center in all it's horrific glory.

And I ate. It. Up.

Black Widow for life! (j/k Phil)

Lots of details, lots of awesome little bits and pieces of S.H.I.E.L.D. and some well known (to me) characters and some new ones and action and adventure and mystery and really really good storytelling.

So yeah, I loved it.

I wasn't actually too sure of Ava at first. I thought maybe she was a throw away type of character - because this series is being written for young adults and the Black Widow isn't a kid, an actual teenager was needed to make the story work for the YA audience.

That isn't what this is at all though. Ava and Natasha are connected in ways I didn't see coming AT ALL and it made for a hell of a story.

Highly recommend for fans of Marvel, Black Widow, and kick ass female characters :)

Wednesday, October 12, 2016

Waiting On Wednesday: Now I Rise by Kiersten White

Waiting On Wednesday is hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine and focuses on books we are super excited about!

Today's Pick

Now I Rise (The Conquerors Saga #2)
by Kiersten White

June 27th 2017 by Delacorte Press

Why I'm Excited
Ok, so there is a long wait for this one BUT the cover just revealed and I couldn't help but share it. I had mixed feelings about And I Darken but I feel pretty invested in Lada's story and after reading the summary of Now I Rise, I'm in!

What are you waiting on today?

Tuesday, October 11, 2016

Happy Book Birthday! October 11, 2016 Edition

A big Happy Birthday to these lovelies today!

Welcome into the world!

The Midnight Star (The Young Elites #3) by Marie Lu | G.P. Putnam's Sons Books for Young Readers | GOODREADS

Black Widow: Red Vengeance (Black Widow #2) by Margaret Stohl | Marvel Press | GOODREADS

Still Life With Tornado by A.S. King | Button Books for Young Readers | GOODREADS

Fear the Drowning Deep by Sarah Glenn Marsh | Sky Pony Press | GOODREADS

Beast by Brie Spangler | Knopf Books for Young Readers | GOODREADS

Iron Cast by Destiny Soria | Amulet Books | GOODREADS

The Weight of Zero by Karen Fortunati | Delacorte Press | GOODREADS

Every Hidden Thing by Kenneth Oppel | Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers | GOODREADS

Frost by M.P. Kozlowsky | Scholastic Press | GOODREADS

The Row by J.R. Johansson | Farrar, Straus and Giroux | GOODREADS

Bound by Blood and Sand by Becky Allen | Delacorte Press | GOODREADS

Speed of Life by J.M. Kelly | HMH Books for Young Readers | GOODREADS

Be Good Be Real Be Crazy by Chelsey Philpot | HarperTeen | GOODREADS

And my Pick of the Day is....

Black Widow: Red Vengeance by Margaret Stohl

After loving book 1 (Black Widow: Forever Red) I couldn't wait to get started on book 2! I'm a huge fan of the Marvel Universe and there is just so much awesomeness in this series!

Be on the look out for my reviews of both books next week!

Any birthday book buying planned into your day?
What new releases are you most excited for?

Monday, October 10, 2016

September Wrap Up Post: Yeah

Hey guys!

Happy October!

I love October!

Fall in New England is kinda fantastic. I highly recommend it! But don't be one of those leave peepers giving me road rage - m'kay? ;)

If you read my wrap up last month you might remember it was a bit...different.


Not to worry -- I'm feeling much better now!

Because it's -- OCTOBER! Woo hoo!

Oh, and I actually managed to read in September! AND looking back through things, and previous thoughts notwithstanding, I actually did read in August. Let's take a look, shall we?


Harry Potter and the Cursed Child by J.K. Rowling
Bluescreen by Dan Wells
Dotwav by Mike A. Lancaster
Burning by Danielle Rollins

Been Here All Along by Sandy Hall
Red Queen by Victoria Aveyard
Gemina by Amie Kaufman and
Black Widow: Forever Red by Margaret Stohl
Labyrinth Lost by Zoraida Cordova took me 9 days to realize I didn't post this....

I. Am. Awesome.

Happy Reading Everyone!