42281865Title: ASHLORDS

Author: Scott Reintgen

Pub. Date: January 14th 2020

Genre: YA Fantasy

Format: Audiobook 

Publisher: Crown Books for Young Readers

Pages: 368 Pages/10 Hours


*ARC provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review*


There was a time where the Gods gifted their people Pheonix horses to battle in war, now those same horses are used for sport. What is required to become a Pheonix rider? Knowledge of Alchemy, fighting, and riding. A Pheonix is created by way of combinations in Alchemy & by Sunset that Pheonix bursts into flames. Each rider has the opportunity during a rebirth to create a Pheonix with specific skill sets/defenses. We follow three characters from very different backgrounds with a whole lot invested in winning this race & securing the bag aka Money & lots of it. It’s been a long time since there’s been an uprising & the Ashlords who are considered the elite in this word have been sitting pretty. Unchallenged since the last rebellion they quelled, the last thing they’d expect is for the people to turn against them. Many lives were lost as a repercussion of the last rebellion as a way to punish the people & ensure they never rise up again, many were ordered to be killed. This race is only the start of a war that’s been brewing & our MC’s have a stake in it all.

Imelda aka The Alchemist –Comes from a humble family who don’t have much funds but are rich in the love they have for one another. Imelda is a skilled Alchemist who has gained some notoriety with the help of her friend who records her creations with Pheonix horses & livestreams them. Imelda has no idea she is recruited as a pawn to divert the attention away from someone with elite status caught in a less than favorable position. Imelda is my favorite character simply because she is proving to be someone who may just flip the script *fingers crossed*

Pippa aka The Favorite –Comes from a family of Ashlords & famous Pheonix riders. The pressure is real for Pippa to make it big but her current relationship with another major Pheonix Rider is making her question a whole lot. Can her boyfriend handle her winning the race? or will that be too much for his ego? Pippa is very intelligent, competitive, and knows how to look out for her best interest. A worthy opponent she does make.

Adrian aka The Longhand – Son of the past rebellion leader, Adrian has been groomed all his life to one day lead their people against the Ashlords who have kept them oppressed. Adrian is described as being very strong & knowledgeable in these races. He’s studied them & has been mentored to recognize his competitors strengths & weaknesses. For Adrian this is about retribution.

Having read Scott Reintgen’s Nyxia trilogy, I was pretty confident we’d get a set of characters I’d love & I’m happy to report this proved to be the case. I listened to the audiobook version after learning that it was narrated by a full cast which is my absolute favorite way to listen to multiple POV stories. The voice actors were PHENOMENAL! you can’t go wrong when you’ve recruited Rebecca Soler who is known for voice acting for Marissa Meyer’s The Lunar Chronicles. We get a good grasp of the Pheonix Riders themselves, I just wish we’d had more on the history of the turmoil as well as the depths of the Gods involvement. Also, as a lover of all things Greek Mythology I really enjoy learning about the myths behind the Gods. I didn’t come away feeling satisfied on my knowledge of the gods in this world but hope we’ll get more of them in the sequel to come. It’s pretty bad a** to have a world where you can create magical horses! also, for all animal lovers the fact that these horses vanish at sunset since they are alchemical creations means they aren’t real horses suffering in this sport & that’s always a plus!<3


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Audiobook Review- Dear Girls: Intimate Tales, Untold Secrets, and Advice for Living Your Best Life

Title: Dear Girls: Intimate Tales, Untold Secrets, and Advice for Living Your Best Life

Author: Ali Wong

Pub. Date: October 15th 2019

Genre: Auto Biography/Memoir/Humor

Publisher: Random House

Run Time: 6 Hours

Format: Audiobook


Where to start? I LOVE Ali Wong!!! 🖤 I watched Always Be My Maybe on Netflix earlier this year & it’s the one movie that actually helped me get through some down days. I just knew I had to listen to her new book Dear Girls & get to know the comedian a bit better, no regrets here! last night I stayed up till 2am watching her stand-up on Netflix “Baby Cobra” & had tears in my eyes from all the laughter. I love auto-biographies/Memoirs, especially those by comedians & have always preferred the audio-book format. Dear Girls is a collection of stories that reads like a long letter to Ali’s daughters. She recounts life as a single woman in NYC and what the dating scene looked like for her leading up to when she meets her husband & father to her girls. There are moments where she drops some knowledge on the comedy scene & what it’s like for a female trying to catch her big break. I LOVED how she makes it known from the get that comedy is something you have to have a passion for. She has a deep appreciation for the small gigs in shady areas that eventually led her to her big break. One things Ali shares is that she knows & has Asian comedian friends who stuck to performing within their Asian communities. This is something Ali wasn’t trying to do, she branched out & really put herself out there. Once she reached a certain level of success & started going on tour, she brought two of her Asian comedian friends along to open her shows.

The love for her roots & cultural background is a big theme in Dear Girls. She talks about how even though it sometimes brings forth judgment from her friend group, dating someone from your own cultural background has its perks. When she met her husband, she knew she had met the one because of how much they have in common. A shared love of Asian cuisine, parents who taught them the value of a dollar, and last but not least a DEEP appreciation for all things 90’s hip hop and R&B. These are some of the things we see her use as inspiration for the movie Always Be My Maybe in which she co-starred & wrote for. I LOVED hearing about her birthing story simply because she doesn’t hold back. Ali gives us the beautiful along with the ugly deets many don’t talk about when describing the birth of their kids. Let’s face it, it can get nasty in the delivery room & I appreciated hearing someone recount their delivery day while I nodded along in agreement haha! There are most definitely some cringe worthy moments where Ali goes into detail about her sex life & I just about died laughing each time! One day her daughters will look back & appreciate those nuggets of wisdom she dropped on them.

Listening to this audio-book got me thinking about writing my own letters to my two tiny humans. A no holds barred approach to journaling that would leave them with a sense of hope when they’re going through ups & downs in love and life. In the last chapter to this audiobook, Ali brought in her husband. In this chapter he talks about meeting Ali and tells his girls a bit about gender roles & the effects on men who don’t necessarily follow traditional roles. Ali’s husband is super supportive of her career & an amazing dad who flew back and forth with the girls to make sure they were together as a family. Traditionally, the men are expected to be the bread winners as was the case with their own fathers. Ali & her husband adjusted their family unit to what worked best for them. Although he is a Harvard graduate & a successful entrepreneur, my heart smiled when I heard how there came time where he sold Ali merch outside of her shows. I loved hearing Ali gush about how she knew her husband was a catch the minute she saw him. Listening to her hubby speak about Ali with admiration was heart warming & you get a sense that they really are soulmates. I walked away from this audiobook knowing that seeing Ali at one of her shows is now a MUST! 🖤


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Title: LIFEL1K3


Pub. Date: MAY 29th. 2018

Genre: YA SCI-FI


Pages: 416

Content Warning: Violence, suicidal thoughts, war themes, terminal illness, loss of a loved one

*HUGE thanks to Random House & Jay Kristoff for the early review copy in exchange for my honest opinion



A high octane YA dystopian described best by the author as “Romeo And Juliet meets Mad Max meets Xmen meets Blade Runner.” LIFEL1K3 is set in a post apocalyptic/post nuclear war North America…specifically a fictional island called “Dregs” in “Kalifornya”where Cancer is the biggest threat to life. The story opens up in a brutal heart wrenching scene that sets the stage for what’s to come. Our MC Eve is a teen who is just living to survive the day to day struggle of surviving the nuclear war. Eve makes her living in the War Dome fighting rogue robots that have broken the First Law…





Either by malfunction or willfull rebellion, these robots have turned against humans. Eve is a tinkerer like her grandfather and has built herself a Machina to battle these rogue robots for money in order to buy him his Cancer medication. All is seemingly well until the day everything goes wrong in the dome leaving her exposed and marking her as a target. From this day forward, Eve and her companions will be on the run for their lives. Pulse pounding action that will leave you at the edge of your seat bracing for the next attack, LIFEL1K3 was one wild ride! With plenty of plot twists along the way, I honestly had a couple of “Ohhhhh Wow” moments haha! I wasn’t expecting a YA sci-fi to have as much depth and layering as LIFEL1K3 did but it went above and beyond. Paired with such unique world building are characters you can’t help but get attached to and root for. Perhaps what makes LIFEL1K3 stand out most is that by the very end it’s not at all what you thought it would be 😉


Eve- a kick a** fighter, loyal to those she loves, a character who is definitely dealing with PTSD. I really felt for Eve and admired her resilience through it all

Lemon Fresh – Quick witted, amazing ride or die friend to Eve, willing to go to the ends of the earth for those she cares about. Lemon has so much gratitude in her heart & this made her my fave character in this book

Cricket – a robot created by Eve’s grandfather to protect her with his robotic life. I wasn’t too fond of this little guy (he hated being called little haha) because of the hurtful names he used to refer to Ezekiel specifically regarding his missing limb

Kaiser (Cyborg dog) – a robotic dog also created by Eve’s grandfather who you easily come to see as a real dog. Kaiser is very much a part of this crew

Ezekiel (LIFEL1K3) – The LIFEL1K3 aka Human-like, Zeke has this undying love for Eve & I’m not quite sure how I feel about him tbh. Zeke isn’t human but he sure has developed as one, has independent thoughts, and acts of his own accord. Personality wise I can’t say much though cause he came across dull to me & I’m not sure if that was purposefully done or not

🖤 All in all I LOVED these characters as a whole and Lemon is a new fave I can’t wait to read more from. Through the grapevine I’ve heard we may also get Lemon’s POV in the next installment *fingers crossed*

LIFEL1K3 is the first book I read outside of the Illuminae world from Kristoff and I walked away pretty much sealing the deal…I have found a new TOP favorite author. I rated this book 4.5 stars simply for one reason & that’s the fact that I struggled just a smidge with the slang created for this world. Everything feels so authentic in this world that it renewed my interest in the post apocalyptic reads but the language is quick & raw. Kristoff does an excellent job at teaching you the slang along the way but it wasn’t without some effort on my behalf. Besides this small thing, I absolutely enjoyed this fun action packed read & already miss the hell out of these characters. I love the reads where you don’t walk away unscathed & there’s plenty of room for theorizing for the next book. LIFEL1K3 has definitely left me with plenty to sit on until the next chapter which can either be viewed as cruel or ingenious & I’m going with the latter of the two 😉

LIFEL1K3 has hit the shelves & is already making fans out of readers. Have you read LIFEL1K3? If so, who is your favorite character? if not, are you adding it to your tbr now that you’ve seen the book trailer up above? 😂


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