A Stella Review: Set Me Free by Kitty Stephens


RATING  3.75 out of 5 stars

Set Me FreeAaron Ledbetter’s future had been planned out for him since before he was born. Each year, the Ledbetter family vacation on Tybee Island gave Aaron a chance to briefly free himself from his family’s expectations. When he meets Jonas “Lucky” Luckett, a caricature artist in town with the traveling carnival, he must choose between the life that’s been mapped out for him, and the chance at true love.

Set Me Free is Kitty Stephens‘ debut novel, in my opinion a very well done young adult story. Two things conquered me, the characters and the writing.

Lucky is eighteen years old, his highschool teacher found him a summer job to a carnival off the coast of Georgia. He is nervous, knowing this is a great chance for his future in an art college but it can’t wait to start enjoying a summer doing what he can do best.

Aaron is looking forward his three months on the Tybee Island to live without his parents’ expectations to go to Harward, take over their company and marry his bestfriend, Lyn. He wants nothing of that.

Aaron and Lucky come from two very different words, being together is hard,  for Aaron, deeply in the closet with no intention of coming out due to parents that have planned his life without asking for their son’s dreams. And for Lucky too, out and proud, with no money and only his talent and a supporting (except for distracting boyfriend) mum. It was a pleasure to see their relationship bloom, Aaron let go of his fears and open up to Lucky. At the same time it was painful too, especially when Aaron and Lyn kept things from each other, afraid of the implications their actions and with who they fall in love, could have on their lives.

I found the writing very good, the reading flew easily and I get to the end without even realizing it. I particularly loved the descriptions, I really felt myself in the carnival, on the beach, at Lucky’s booth waiting for him to draw me in. The author did an amazing work, she sucked me into the MCs’ lives and it was impossible to let them go.

At the end what I got was a story about freedom, summer loves and finally achieve your wishes. It is sweet, emotional and lovely. I feel I can recommend it. I can say I’m curious to read more by Kitty Stephens.

The cover design by CB Messer is what caught my attention first. It’s so cute and sweet, I simply couldn’t resist. And it perfectly portraits the story of Aaron and Jonas.

Sales Links: Interlude Press | ARe | Amazon

Book Details:

Kindle Edition,192 pages
Published June 6th 2016 by Duet, an imprint of Interlude Press
Edition Language English

A Stella YA Review: The Rules of Ever After by Killian B. Brewer


Rating 4,5 stars out of 5

The Rules of Ever After coverThe rules of royal life have governed the kingdoms of Clarameer for thousands of years, but Prince Phillip and Prince Daniel know that these rules don’t provide for the happily ever after they seek. A fateful, sleepless night on top of a pea set under twenty mattresses brings the two young men together and sends them on a quest out into the kingdoms.

On their travels, they encounter meddlesome fairies, an ambitious stepmother, disgruntled princesses and vengeful kings as they learn about life, love, friendship, and family. Most of all, the two young men must learn to know themselves and how to write their own rules of ever after.

The Rules of Ever After is the debut novel from Duet Books, an imprint for Young Adult LGBTQ fiction from Interlude Press.

I usually don’t read young adult books, but lately I found myself intrigued by all the covers of a new publisher called Interlude Press. There imprint for YA stories and I was really curious about The Rules of Ever After.  I was interested by the blurb but the book was not what I was expecting, it was so much more. Not only a YA but a fairytale, just what I was in the mood for. So here I am. Moreover it is the debut novel by this new author, Killian B. Brewer. Surprisingly perfect! Well written, engaging, funny, amazing!

The Rules of Ever After tells the story of Prince Phillip and Prince David and their adventures all around the kingdoms of Clamareer, looking for an evil stepmother and a cure for a curse.

My lovely main characters are surrounded by a lot of people, all of them interesting, funny and crazy too. Like Mitta and her fairy sisters, the main troublemakers with their magical wands. But they are just an example. The book is  continuous new meetings, of new little enterprises to reach all that will help Phillip and David to slowly know what is in front of them.

The book is really really well written, with a delicate and precious style, intelligent and full of humour. The author chose to use various point of views, not just the MCs’ ones and honestly it wasn’t confusing or too much at once.  On the contrary, I think it was the right way to develop the fairytale in the best way possible. Especially in the different references to our beloved bedtime (and not only) stories.

I want to recommend The Rules of Ever After by Killian B. Brewer cause it was an easy read, never boring and masterfully done, unexpectedly suggestive and poetic. I could see all of the adventures through Killian’s words. I can’t praise the author enough, I can’t wait to read more by him.

Cover designed by Buckeyegrrl Designs. It caught my attention from the start, cause it’s different. I like it!

Sales Links:  Interlude Press | All Romance | Amazon | Smashwords| Buy It Here

Book Details:

Kindle Edition, 256 pages
Published June 9th 2015 by Duet
Edition Language English