Release Boost, Review & Giveaway: Cracked Open by T.L. Christianson

Posted 26/08/2020 by Isabelle MBTL in giveaways, review, tours / 0 Comments

Release Boost, Review & Giveaway: Cracked Open by T.L. Christianson

This book may be unsuitable for people under 18 years of age due to its use of sexual content, drug and alcohol use, and/or violence.

I received this book for free from Give Me Books Promotions in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Release Boost, Review & Giveaway: Cracked Open by T.L. ChristiansonCracked Open G by T.L. Christianson
Published by Myth & Moon Press on August 19, 2020
Cover Design: Raquel Lyon at Crooked Sixpence Book Covers
Genres: Romantic Fantasy, Young Adult/New Adult
Pages: 275
Format: ARC, digital e-book
Source: Give Me Books Promotions
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Dragons, bonded mates, and irreversible decisions.

After a car accident left my only parent – my father in the hospital, I was swept away to the Dragon Born Academy by my estranged grandmother.

If I had to be there, I’d be an observer of this place with its rituals and superstitions… After all, everyone’s made it clear I don’t belong.

But then it happened…and Ashe Carrick – my impossibly irresistible bond-mate happened.

Being Cracked Open changed everything… Who I thought I was, WHAT I thought I was…


The words alone bring to mind monsters and princesses in castles.

I am the princess and the monster they locked away. However, my story has no damsels in distress, waiting to be rescued.

It’s self-rescue time, and I’m done playing nice.


Young Adult/New Adult, Romantic Fantasy

First Person, female-POV

This is book #1 of the Dragon Born Academy. It does end in a cliffhanger.

Wow!!! This was great!

I loved the world built here. It is unique! Different than everything else I’ve read.

I love all the characters. They were so easy to love that I became invested in their happiness.

The romance was a big surprise. It took us out of the obvious and it felt like we were exploring uncharted territory.

I won’t be saying much more than this, because you need to read the book, to enjoy this great adventure!!!

Cute, taboo romance!!!

33/35 STARS – 4.5 STARS (between 31.5 stars and 33 stars)

Addictiveness: 5 Character: 5 Cover: 5 Freshness: 5 Plot: 4 Romance: 4 Writing Style: 5

Action 4/5 Angst 4/5 Darkness 0/5 Humor 3/5 Romance 5/5 Suspense/Mystery 4/5

Would I recommend? Yes, readers of YA/NA fantasy!

Would I re-read this book/series? Yes!

Would I read more from the author? Definitely!!!

Addictiveness: 5/5 This book was so different, so unique that it had me hooked from the first page. The world built was amazing and it had me wanting to discover more. As addictive as chocolate!!!

Character: hero 5/5, heroine 5/5, secondary characters 5/5, growth 5/5, real 5/5 Multidimensional characters with great personal growth and background stories.

Sydney was an amazing heroine. She was so young, but so strong and brave. She had been dealt a scary turn of events and she took it pretty well all things considered. When the unimaginable happened, still it wasn’t easy. Her path was filled with hurdles and she had been managing it very mature for someone so young.

Ashe was a great hero. Even though sometimes his decisions were not what us readers wanted, they were usually the right ones. He was the adult. He was the true Dragonborn with knowledge of their world. He was responsible, reliable and cute. I’m really looking forward to “be” inside his head. I missed his voice.

Secondary characters They all felt relevant to the story and interesting. There were many that I would like to know more.

Villain/antagonists Everything is still in the air here. So, we got several options for villains and a platoon of antagonists.

They were easy to love, to connect and understand!!!

Cover: art 5/5, title 5/5, color-font 5/5, subtitle 3.5/5, background 5/5 buy 5/5  I’m obsessed with book covers. I love to find snippets of the stories within the art. I always try to be true to myself, I buy so many books because of the cover and I have skipped many because of not very appealing art. Covers are part of the experience for me and I do like to understand them. This one was perfection!!! I love when a book cover feels personal. This was was clear made for this story and everything seems pertinent. The academy at the background, her dragon, the title and the font used. Sidney in her uniform. Wow! I would definitely buy this book by its cover without needing to read the blurb!

Freshness: 5/5 ONE-OF-A-KIND! Everything here feels out-of-this-world original. It is fresh and unique. From the setting, to the plot, to the romance and the twists. As fresh as water during summer in the middle of the desert!!!

Plot: believable 4/5, conflict 5/5, dialogue 5/5, ending 4/5, enjoyment 5/5, opening 5/5, pace 5/5, setting 5/5, subplots 5/5, twists 5/5  Amazing opening with an incredible ending even though with a cliffhanger. Superb plot, with well written dialogues and intense pace. Great setting, a few really good subplots with unexpected twists. High level of enjoyment!

This plot was so so so good. Really, a taboo romance in a YA book? You don’t usually find this. And it is so well written, you don’t even remember that it is taboo.

The plot was filled with twists and turns and each time the reader believed he knew what was coming, that ending happened!!!

Romance: believable 5/5, chemistry 3/5, description 5/5, development 4/5, steam 3/5  This was very beautiful. The author had such a delicate way of writing about this complex love story. It was cute, sweet and loving. Taboo romance!!!

Writing Style: 5/5 What is not to like? Complex characters, creative plot, fantastic romance in a clean, cohesive writing. Work of a wordsmith!!!

Because I try to be very analytical and I don’t really believe in perfection…

I really missed the male POV. I caught myself many times wanting to know what Ashe was thinking at a specific moment. To see inside his Dragonborn brain would be interesting.

Also, I understand the need of cliffhangers, it doesn’t mean that I have to like them. 🙂

You MAY read this because you follow the author; you SHOULD read this because you like romantic fantasy; you MUST read this because the romance is enchanting!!!

The tattoo shimmered as she moved, the sensation like that of silk sliding along my skin.
Aaraeth? I asked.
I am here… came her reply in my head.
She was separate but part of me at the same time.
Ashe had turned toward me and cleared his throat, but he didn’t look away from my naked body. Logical thought told me that I should cover myself or turn away, but after what we’d just shared—the gesture felt wrong. Ashe was connected to me now, and I felt it deep within my bones.
Closing the space between us, he reached out and ran his fingertips over my collarbone along Aaraeth as she glided across my skin.
“Aaraeth is a full dragon, I’ve never seen a female Prime,” he told me, his voice full of awe.

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About T.L. Christianson

T.L. lives in Colorado with her husband and two children. She’s a graduate from the University of Colorado in Boulder and an avid outdoorswoman. When she’s not outside or writing, you’ll find her playing the Sims, a new Nancy Drew Mystery or watching some Netflix.

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