Havenfall

A safe haven between four realms. The girl sworn to protect it — at any cost.

Hidden deep in the mountains of Colorado lies the Inn at Havenfall, a sanctuary that connects ancient worlds — each with their own magic — together. For generations, the inn has protected all who seek refuge within its walls, and any who disrupt the peace can never return.

For Maddie Morrow, summers at the inn are more than a chance to experience this magic first-hand. Havenfall is an escape from reality, where her mother sits on death row accused of murdering Maddie’s brother. It’s where Maddie fell in love with handsome Fiorden soldier Brekken. And it’s where one day she hopes to inherit the role of Innkeeper from her beloved uncle.

But this summer, the impossible happens–a dead body is found, shattering everything the inn stands for. With Brekken missing, her uncle gravely injured, and a dangerous creature on the loose, Maddie suddenly finds herself responsible for the safety of everyone in Havenfall. She’ll do anything to uncover the truth, even if it means working together with an alluring new staffer Taya, who seems to know more than she’s letting on. As dark secrets are revealed about the inn itself, one thing becomes clear to Maddie–no one can be trusted, and no one is safe… 

Havenfall, Sara Holland
March 3, 2020

This book really has everything I could have ever wanted: portal fantasy, queer characters, magic and mystery! A pretty cover! An author I’ve loved before!

And yet, I couldn’t get into it. At all.

There was something about the pacing, something about the characters that I just couldn’t get into. I loved Sara Holland’s Everless duology. That one pulled me in from the veryfirst line. But Havenfall just… didn’t.

I had to DNF it at like, chapter 2 because I just couldn’t see myself enjoying it going forward. I’m trying to not lose myself to forcing a way through a book if I’m not going to like it. It’s never an easy decision to put down a book. I want to love everything that comes across my path, especially books that tick off all the boxes.

And Havenfall, despite promising everything I could ever want, wasn’t for me.

My Rating:
DNF

Episode #21: Everless

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http://bookedallnight.podbean.com/e/episode-21-everless/

Listen to this episode and other episodes of the podcast on Podbean.

This week’s episode contains major spoilers for Sara Holland’s Everless! Jessi and Maggie talk about what they liked, what they didn’t like, and how the middle felt a little bit like a fat cat in the snow.

Follow Sara Holland on Twitter and be sure to get a pre-order of Everless before it comes out on January 2nd, 2018!


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Everless ★★★☆☆½

everlessTime is a prison. One girl holds the key. This is a thrilling, high-stakes new fantasy duology, perfect for fans of Red QueenThree Dark Crowns, and Six of Crows.

In the kingdom of Sempera, time is extracted from the blood, converted into coins, and used as currency or consumed to add to one’s lifespan. The rich aristocracy amass eons in their vaults, while the poor are forced to cut their futures short in order to survive in the present. And few families are richer than the Gerlings, who lord over the peasants from Everless, their palatial estate.

A fateful accident once spurred Jules and her father to flee Everless in the dark of night. But ten years later, in order to save her dying father, Jules must secretly return. Everless holds more temptations—and dangers—than Jules thought possible. Soon, she’s caught in a tangle of violent secrets, and finds her heart torn between two people she thought she’d never see again. Her decisions have the power to change her fate—and the fate of time itself.

This dazzling debut novel, starring a fierce heroine and rife with high-stakes adventure, engrossing mysteries, star-crossed romance, and captivating magic all set in a richly built world, will leave you counting down the seconds until the next installment.

I’m mixed about this one. I definitely loved the prose and the very literal take on “time is money.” I really loved the greater world that Holland created here with the Sorceress and the Alchemist, and general fantastical elements that wove their way around this story.

But I hated the pacing and particular character flaw so much I put it down.