Mini Reviews

the girl the sea gave back by Adrienne young
Picture from Goodreads

The Girl the Sea Gave Back by Adrienne Young

⭐️⭐️/5

I really enjoyed Sky in the Deep by Adrienne Young, and I wanted to like this sequel, unfortunately that was not the case. This story takes place ten years after the events of Sky in the Deep. I thought Halvard was a great side character before, but he fell short as a main character in this book. Both him and Tova just had really bland personalities. Frankly, I found Tova to be a pushover with a lot of power in her hands.

The plot was slow going and I did not see any real action until I was halfway through the book. The back and forth between two years ago, ten years ago, and the present became really bothersome. I felt like just some explanation about what happened those years ago would have been sufficient, we did not need to be going back and forth in time every single time something about the past needed to be explained. Overall, I believe my expectations going into this book were set really high and maybe I’m being a bit harsh, but I would not recommend this one.

King of Scars by Leigh Bardugo
Picture from Goodreads

King of Scars by Leigh Bardugo

⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️/5

I have said before that I will read whatever Bardugo writes forever and ever, and I will say it again. Her characters are always so unique, she can write scary scenes like no other, and the dialogue is amazing. Only bad thing, and this was totally my fault for not researching it first, but I didn’t know this book would ruin the rest of the Shadow and Bones series for me. Just a warning there are a lot of spoilers in this book for Shadow and Bones and for Crooked Saints. I bought this audio book on sale on the Audible app, and did not realize my mistake.

I loved Nikolai’s humor and how full of himself he is. He’s like the male version of Aelin from Throne of Glass. I also fell in love with Zoya, and I found it hilarious how terrified everyone is of her. I really missed Nina, from the Six of Crows series, and we also get a lot of her here. The plot is fast paced and there is constant action. The dialogue is full of humor, and I liked the playful banter between the members of Nokolai’s court. This book was really enjoyable and I cannot wait for the next one. I would totally recommend it if you have read all the other grishaverse books.

A Curse so Dark and Lonely

⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

This was never a curse to be broken. This was a death sentence. The true curse has been the thought that we might find escape.”

rhen
My bookstagram

Author: Brigid Kemmerer

Publication date: January 29, 2019

Cursed by a powerful enchantress to repeat the autumn of his eighteenth year, Prince Rhen, the heir of Emberfall, thought he could be saved easily if a girl fell for him. But that was before he turned into a vicious beast hell-bent on destruction. Before he destroyed his castle, his family, and every last shred of hope.

Nothing has ever been easy for Harper. With her father long gone, her mother dying, and her brother constantly underestimating her because of her cerebral palsy, Harper learned to be tough enough to survive. When she tries to save a stranger on the streets of Washington, DC, she’s pulled into a magical world. (Synopsis from Goodreads)

Plot:

I found the plot to be fast paced and gripping, but without feeling too rushed. I’ve read a lot of fairy tale retellings, and this one was different enough to be entertaining yet it still kept many of the familiar concepts I associate with Beauty and the Beast. It included the beast (of course), a girl taken against her will, and an enchanted castle. I also thought the romance aspect of the story was very realistic, especially the fact that at a young age it’s hard to identify what love feels like.

The choices we face may not be the choices we want, but they are choices nonetheless.”

rhen

Characters:

Harper is the only character I have come across in the YA/Fantasy genre who suffers from cerebral palsy. She was strong and ferocious and did not let her disability hinder her in any way. She was also loyal, and so brave, albeit sometimes bordering on reckless.

Rhen, was a bit self-centered, but Harper helped him come out of his bubble of misery and made him understand that he was not the only one suffering. His people were suffering too, and he had the means to help them. I felt like Rhen’s character wasn’t as fully developed as Harper’s, and we were missing a lot of his background. I understand it was painful for him to talk about his past, but we needed a bit more to make him real.

Lastly, I want to talk about the villains. The enchantress, Lilith was scary, but not as scary as that queen from the other neighboring kingdom Karis Luran. I thought the fact that she was totally fine with burning innocent women and children alive was a lot more terrifying than the torture Lilith was willing to impart on our characters.

I’m always surprised to discover that when the world seems darkest, there exists the greatest opportunity for light.”

freya

The World building:

The world is called Emberfall, but apart from the castle, an Inn, and the surrounding woods we don’t get to see a whole lot of it. The castle is where the characters spend most of the their time and the author does a great job describing it in great detail. I just wish it had a giant Library 🙂

We also get a nice rendering of the bad neighbohood in Washington D.C where Harper is from, and her dingy apartment.

Overall:

This is a story about loyalty, bravery, and what it means to truly love someone. It was beautiful and enchanting. I would recommend it to all Fantasy readers and fairy tale lovers. I read it in two sittings because I could not put it down. I will definitely be reading the next book in the series “A Heart so Fierce and Broken” which will be out January 7, 2020.

Have you guys read this one? What did you think?

My Comfort Books

I’m sure we are all familiar with reading slumps. We have all been there at some point in our lives. For me, these usually happen when I’m feeling depressed or just relatively low. The first step for me is recognizing that I’m just in one of those moods, and also repeating to myself over and over that shopping on Amazon is not going to make it better 🙂 Then, like a child reaching for a favorite blanket, I go for my comfort books.

Picture from Goodreads

Harry Potter and the Cursed Child by John Tiffany, Jack Thorne, and J.K. Rowling

I’m a big Harry Potter fan, but whenever I’m in one of these reading slumps it’s this screenplay that makes it better. Scorpius, Draco Malfoy’s son, makes my heart happy. He is just one of those characters. He is so full of light and laughter, and everything he says makes me smile. I also think the book has a really nice message.

People say parenting is the hardest job in the world -they’re wrong- growing up is. We all just forget how hard it was.”

Draco

Picture taken by me

Shatter Me by Tahereh Mafi

Poor Juliette, sometimes a character’s life has been so terrible and heartbreaking that it makes me feel better about mine. Nothing like the post apocalyptic Shatter Me series to make all my problems seem small and insignificant in comparison. Also, the writing is so poetic it’s almost hypnotic, and I find it very soothing.

I just read anything I could find. Fairy tales and mysteries and history and poetry. It didn’t matter what it was. I would read it over and over and over again. The books…they helped keep me from losing my mind all together…”

Juliette

I always know I’m at an all time low when I don’t even have the will to read, but these books always help get me out of it. I have both paperback copies and e-books, and I just read them over and over until I feel like reading something new.

What do you when you’re in a reading slump?

Five Books I DNF

I don’t know why, but in the past few months I have either read spectacular five star books, or really bad ones I cannot bring myself to finish. I hope the five star trend continues, but the bad books need to stop. Hopefully now that I have more like-minded reader friends on Goodreads I won’t stray into bad books as often.

Picture from Goodreads

Empress of a Thousand Skies by Rhoda Belleza

I found this book so boring. The story had a lot of potential but it really just fell flat. What a shame, because look at that gorgeous cover.

Picture from Goodreads

Stalking Jack the Ripper by Kerri Maniscalco

This one that I’ve put on my “Second chance” shelf on Goodreads, I might try to read it one day. What really bothered me about it was the language they were using for the time period, and honestly it was a bit predictable for a mystery. But I have heard the other books in the series are good.

Picture from Goodreads

Envy by J.R. Ward

I enjoyed the first two books in this series. But the slang got a bit annoying in this one and I had to stop reading it. Frankly I was no longer as invested in the series as I was before and did not see a point in continuing.

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The Darkest Star (Origin, #1) by Jennifer L. Armentrout

This might be an unpopular opinion, but I could not stand the main female character Evie. She was annoying, while also trying to give off this tough attitude but then not standing up for herself when she needed to. She let this guy Luke walk all over her. It could have also been the narrator’s voice in the audio book. Either way, I have learned my lesson and I will sample audio books before I check them out of the Library app, and obviously before I buy them.

Picture from Goodreads

Lips Touch Three Times by Laini Taylor

I loved Taylor’s other books, but I could not get into this one. I am not sure if I have trouble with goblins being the villains, but this book was too weird for me. I am now staying away from goblin books, since I also DNF Wintersong by S. Jae-Jones. Maybe it’s Harry Potter syndrome, but I just can’t look at goblins as villains, to me they’re just creepy.

What are some books you absolutely could not finish?

Monday Cleaning Day

After doing a major TBR organization and clean-up on Saturday, my list on Goodreads is now looking a lot better and more manageable. Either way it’s always good to keep an eye on it and make sure I don’t go TBR happy again. Plus, all those pretty pictures on my Bookstagram lately have made me add so many books on there. Since my list is down to 76 books, this time I am only looking at the first five books I added in reverse chronological order.

Picture from Goodreads

Two Dark Reigns (Three Dark Crowns, #3) by Kendare Blake

I loved the first book in this series. It started out really slow, but once it picked up I couldn’t put it down. The same thing happened with the second book, except I got bored and actually put it down. Now, it’s just sitting there in my TBR basket waiting for me to pick it back up. Once I read that one, then I will read this one which is the third in the series.

Keep 🙂

Picture from Goodreads

Shades of Wicked (Night Rebel, #1) by Jeaniene Frost

I read a sample of this one and really liked it. Also, the reviews on Goodreads are great, it’s currently a 4.35/5 stars. I fear this author’s books might become my new guilty pleasure.

Keep 🙂

My Bookstagram

Daughter of the Pirate King by Tricia Levenseller

This one I picked up while on vacation at Fort Myers beach and I still haven’t gotten to it. It has good reviews and people really love the second one in the series called Daughter of the Siren Queen.

Keep 🙂

Picture from Goodreads

Wicked Saints (Something Dark and Holy, #1) by Emily A. Duncan

I feel like this book was just really hyped up online, but the reviews on my Goodreads seem like it hasn’t lived up to the hype. Maybe I will add it later on if someone can convince me otherwise.

Delete 😦

Picture from Goodreads

The Queen of Nothing (The Folk of the Air, #3) by Holly Black

This is not even a question. I have been highly anticipating this book. I loved the first two books in this series and I can’t wait for the last one.

Keep 🙂

I’m so happy my new organization system seems to be working. I only had to delete one out of five this time. How do you guys decide what to read?

Bookish Bucket List

I have a regular bucket list which includes things like “learn to drive stick-shift” and “help baby sea turtles reach the ocean.” Today, I realized there are many book related things I want to accomplish, and what better way keep track of them than with a Book Bucket List?

So without further rambling or reminiscing here are three things I’m adding:

Read Moby Dick by Herman Melville and Anna Karenina by Leo Tolstoy

Now I know what some of you are thinking. Half of you are saying: “What do you mean you haven’t read them? The other half are saying: “Why would you put yourself through that?” Because I can that’s why! Also, I have owned those two books forever and I feel that it’s time. I was just out of College when I got them, I attempted to read them and never really finished them. I had an English Lit professor who talked so passionately about them that I had to go and get them. I was probably not in the right frame of mind, but I will try again before I kick the bucket.

Go to London

Both Harry Potter and The Infernal Devices series were set there. I’ve always felt a connection to the gloomy gray streets of London, even if I have never physically been there. I’ve been there in mind and spirit, and I feel like I should come full circle and experience it in person. Also, I think a picture of me inside one of those red phone booths from Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix would be fantastic.

Own the rest of the Throne of Glass series

Okay, so for some obscure reason I ended up with only the first book and last book of this series. Once again I know what you’re thinking: Just buy them! No really, please tell me to just buy them so I can justify it to my bank account, and my husband. There are many other series that I need to complete or own, but this one really bothers me. First, because the covers are so gorgeous. And second, I have a big girl crush on Celaena (used this name on purpose not to ruin for others), and how awesome would it be to stare at her on my bookshelf ALL day on six different book covers?!.

Please drop me a comment and let me know what’s on your book bucket list? I would love to hear form you!

My TBR Basket

Who else has a never ending TBR (To Be Read) pile?

Mine currently includes:

~The Lord of the Rings (#1 and #2, I still need to get #3) by J.R.R. Tolkien

~Daughter of the Pirate King by Tricia Levenseller

~One Dark Throne (Three Dark Crowns, #2) by Kendare Blake

Am I the only bookworm who has never read “The Hobbit” or “The Lord of the Rings” trilogy? I’m so ashamed to have those on my basket.

Daughter of the Pirate King was a new acquisition while on vacation. I’ve heard it has a strong female character, and those are my favorite.

Finally, I really need to get to One Dark Throne, the third one of the series is already out and it’s getting really hard to avoid the spoilers.

And these are only the real books I have yet to read. I still have a long list of e-books I haven’t gotten to, and a huge “To Read” shelf on Goodreads.

How about you?