Monday, June 26, 2017

Surprise! New Blog Design!

   Hi Guys!
   So you may have noticed something different on the blog today, hmm I wonder what could it be? I got a new blog design, TA DA!
   I've been in a blogging and reading slump since school ended, and I thought revamping my blog might help change things up. I'm not sure if it'll work, or if I'll end up hating the new design in a few days or so, but I guess I'll just have to wait and see.
   So I hope that you guys love it, or at least grow to love it. I've always been a huge simplicity themed fan, so I think that this new design showcases that off a bit.
   Anyways, like I said, I hope that you guys love it.


Friday, June 23, 2017

Book Review: The Gentleman's Guide to Vice and Virtue by Mackenzi Lee

Release Date: June 27th, 2017
Read: June 4th-7th, 2017
Publisher: Katherine Tegen Books
Series: Standalone
Format: ARC, 528 pages
Source: McNally Robinson/ Be First Book Club




Description from GoodReads:


   An unforgettable tale of two friends on their Grand Tour of 18th-century Europe who stumble upon a magical artifact that leads them from Paris to Venice in a dangerous manhunt, fighting pirates, highwaymen, and their feelings for each other along the way.

   Henry “Monty” Montague was born and bred to be a gentleman, but he was never one to be tamed. The finest boarding schools in England and the constant disapproval of his father haven’t been able to curb any of his roguish passions—not for gambling halls, late nights spent with a bottle of spirits, or waking up in the arms of women or men.

   But as Monty embarks on his grand tour of Europe, his quest for a life filled with pleasure and vice is in danger of coming to an end. Not only does his father expect him to take over the family’s estate upon his return, but Monty is also nursing an impossible crush on his best friend and traveling companion, Percy.

   Still it isn’t in Monty’s nature to give up. Even with his younger sister, Felicity, in tow, he vows to make this yearlong escapade one last hedonistic hurrah and flirt with Percy from Paris to Rome. But when one of Monty’s reckless decisions turns their trip abroad into a harrowing manhunt that spans across Europe, it calls into question everything he knows, including his relationship with the boy he adores.


Review:


   Wait until you fall for the boy who can't love you back.
   Last year I had picked up My Lady Jane to read, after receiving it in the June 2016 OwlCrate, and I fell in love with the historical and comical aspects of the book. Since then, I've kept an eye out for that particular kind of book, and that's how The Gentleman's Guide to Vice and Virtue came into my radar. I was also lucky enough to have picked up a copy for McNally's Be First Book Club.
   Even though the book was from a completely different author than My Lady Jane, I couldn't help but compare TGGtVaV to My Lady Jane for the entirety of the book.  My Lady Jane contained magical aspects to the book, aspects that I couldn't help but feel like were needed in TGGtVaV, and thus I just couldn't help but not feel a big pull of interest to the book. In this case I blame myself for not being a big fan of contemporary novels, as well building the book up to be something completely different in my head.
   Although I had ruined the book for myself, I was still able to enjoy different aspects of the book, the characters and relationships in particular. The main character, Monty, is a bisexual who lives sometime in the 18th century, and life in the 18th century certainly isn't easy for a bisexual. Along with being a bisexual, being a person of colour or even a woman, aren't any easier when it comes to that time period. The three main characters that we encounter in the book happen to fit one or more of these categories. Although the novel pays more attention to the bisexual aspects of the book, and how the people of the time period don't support it or even view it as appriotate, Lee does a terrific job of also drawing attention to the way people of colour were/are treated poorly, and how the women of the time had to fit the mold that was created for them. Lee would throw in little facts throughout the book that made you pause and consider the truth in what was being said, instances like, "There is nothing good about watching another man claim your ship because your skin is too dark to do it yourself" and "Ladies haven't the luxury of being squeamish about blood.". Lee would never tiptoe around the truth, and would give you the facts as they were, you couldn't help but love the book because of this.
   Out of the main characters, I absolutely hated Monty. He was always so ignorant, could only ever care about himself, and not to mention he made so many problems for Percy and Felicity. In the end Lee could have made him perfect, but she made him imperfect which I couldn't help but enjoy, even if he infuriated me. The same went with the other two characters, Lee made them both imperfect as well, like all people are. It was different from most YA novels, and I hope to finally see that become a norm.
   And finally, I know it's only a small piece but I really enjoyed how the cover's little sketches predicted what was to come in the novel. The little sketches seemed like they were just kind of there when I began the novel, but I can't help but love them now.
   The Gentleman's Guide to Vice and Virtue was not what I had hoped it to be, but it did have some phenomenal parts to it and I would certainly recommend to to anyone who needs a "Big Gay European Road Trip Novel".  I will probably end up picking up the books companion spin-off, The Lady's Guide to Petticoats and Piracy when it releases in 2018.


Rating:

Favourite Quote:


"What we once were, that you are now. What we are now, soon you shall be."

Recommend to People Who Enjoy:


Young Adult, Historical Fiction, Contemporary, LGBTQA+ Stories, Fantasy, Romance, Adventure



Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Book Review: Dividing Eden by Joelle Charbonneau

Release Date: June 6th, 2017
Read: June 8th-16th, 2017
Publisher: HarperCollins
Series: Dividing Eden, #1
Format: ARC, 336 pages
Source: McNally Robinson/Two Thumbs Up Program




Description from GoodReads:


   Twins Carys and Andreus were never destined to rule Eden. With their older brother next in line to inherit the throne, the future of the kingdom was secure.

   But appearances—and rivals—can be deceiving. When Eden’s king and crown prince are killed by assassins, Eden desperately needs a monarch, but the line of succession is no longer clear. With a ruling council scheming to gain power, Carys and Andreus are faced with only one option—to take part in a Trial of Succession that will determine which one of them is worthy of ruling the kingdom.

   As sister and brother, Carys and Andreus have always kept each other safe—from their secrets, from the court, and from the monsters lurking in the mountains beyond the kingdom’s wall. But the Trial of Succession will test the bonds of trust and family.

   With their country and their hearts divided, Carys and Andreus will discover exactly what each will do to win the crown. How long before suspicion takes hold and the thirst for power leads to the ultimate betrayal?


Review:


   Do you wish to refuse the task, Princess?
   The cover of Dividing Eden was one of the reasons I had originally picked up an ARC at McNally Robinson for their Two Thumbs Up Program. Simplicity in covers is one of my favourite book cover trends, so that was definitely a factor when picking up a copy, but once I read into Dividing Eden a bit more, I was also intrigued with the synopsis and couldn't help but be excited to read the book. 
   Whenever I look back at Dividing Eden, I will only have happy memories of the cover, because in the end the book did not meet my expectations. Throughout the 336 pages of the book, I was constantly bored and found the plot to be extremely predictable. At times I even wanted to just give up on the book because I just couldn't stand it anymore.
   Then there was the vagueness that clung to everything. There were many occasions throughout the book that information was given, but it was so vague that you couldn't help but wonder what the point was. Especially when they brought it up so frequently. One major point would be the Xhelozi, they were continuously mentioned throughout the book and were considered a major threat but in the end they only had a minor role for a few pages and then were done. It was disappointing. 
   Dividing Eden wasn't what I wanted it to be, at all. I was disappointed and bored throughout the whole book, it is more than likely that I will not be picking up the sequel when it releases. 

Rating:


Favourite Quotes:


"I'm worth more than the few coppers you have in your pockets."

Recommend to People Who Enjoy:


Young Adult, Fantasy, Sci-Fi, Royalty, Princesses, Princes, Monsters, Competitions 



Saturday, June 10, 2017

Book Review: The Traitor's Kiss by Erin Beaty

Release Date: May 9th, 2017
Read: April 18th-20th, 2017
Publisher: Imprint
Series: Traitor's Trilogy, #1
Format: ARC, 352 pages
Source: Publisher/Raincoast Books in exchange for honest review




Description from GoodReads:




   An obstinate girl who will not be married. 

   A soldier desperate to prove himself. 

   A kingdom on the brink of war.



   With a sharp tongue and an unruly temper, Sage Fowler is not what they’d call a lady―which is perfectly fine with her. Deemed unfit for marriage, Sage is apprenticed to a matchmaker and tasked with wrangling other young ladies to be married off for political alliances. She spies on the girls―and on the soldiers escorting them.


   As the girls' military escort senses a political uprising, Sage is recruited by a handsome soldier to infiltrate the enemy ranks. The more she discovers as a spy, the less certain she becomes about whom to trust―and Sage becomes caught in a dangerous balancing act that will determine the fate of her kingdom. 


Review:


   After living the longest and worst days of my life, I can not wait any longer to hold you again.
   Before getting my hands on Traitor's Kiss to read and review, I heard quite a few different things about the book. Things ranging from it being a Mulan retelling, to receiving backlash for offending POC. In the end I received a copy for review, and even though I'd usually avoid something that's received bad praise for cases like this, I still ended up reading it for the publisher.
   Right as you begin the book you notice why there is the backlash, just as the characters are being described, Erin Beaty insensitively refers to the Asian characters as dark when their complexion is described, and in some cases even refers to them "fading in the shadows". This happens throughout the book, sometimes frequently and sometimes not. With this being Beaty's first novel, one can hope that she has learned from her mistakes when it comes to future novels.
   Although I was first introduced to the novel as a Mulan retelling, I wouldn't recommend it to people as one, I find that introduction to be a bit of a stretch from the truth. The novel itself does feature a lot of resemblances to the beloved story, but the story itself as a whole can't be seen as one. With connections to matchmakers, soldiers, and even some disguised deception, it's understandable why it was originally described as such.
   I've read a lot of fantasy in my days of being an avid reader, a lot of them featuring soldiers and generals, etc. Never have I read a fantasy so in depth when regarding the tactics and strategies of the soldiers. The way Beaty described how Captain Quinn and his men acted was so intriguing and different all at once. Once I finished the novel I learnt that this was because Beaty was once a weapons specialist as well as a leadership instructor and actually knew her stuff. I found her expertise made the novel all that much more exciting, and found myself wanting to continue on with the book just because of the tactics and strategies.
   I was a bit conflicted with our female protagonist Sage, her character fell into the trope of believing that she wasn't like the other girls in the regard that she shouldn't be given to the matchmaker to have her wed. Throughout the book when she travels with the Matchmaker, she even looks down upon the girls who her Matchmaker is setting up with people. When it came to her in these regards, I couldn't stand her. But in another case, I also admired and liked her for her spying techniques. I think the spying made her all that more interesting, but I wouldn't say that I'm a fan of hers.
   If you're willing to look past the why Beaty describes her characters complexions, then I think Traitor's Kiss was a hit! I do not believe that a sequel has been purchased by the publisher quite yet, but when it does you can certainly see me on the top of the list of people who want to read it!

Rating:


Favourite Quote:


"You're a complication, Sage, one I never could have planned for."

Recommend to People Who Enjoy:


Young Adult, Fantasy, Romance, Military, Matchmaking, Strategy 



Thursday, June 8, 2017

Book Review: Caraval by Stephanie Garber

Release Date: January 31st, 2017
Read: November 16th-December 7th, 2016
Publisher: Flatrion Books
Series: Caraval, #1
Format: Signed ARC, 401 pages
Source: BEA 2016




Description from GoodReads:


   Scarlett has never left the tiny island where she and her beloved sister, Tella, live with their powerful, and cruel, father. Now Scarlett’s father has arranged a marriage for her, and Scarlett thinks her dreams of seeing Caraval, the far-away, once-a-year performance where the audience participates in the show, are over.

   But this year, Scarlett’s long-dreamt of invitation finally arrives. With the help of a mysterious sailor, Tella whisks Scarlett away to the show. Only, as soon as they arrive, Tella is kidnapped by Caraval’s mastermind organizer, Legend. It turns out that this season’s Caraval revolves around Tella, and whoever finds her first is the winner.


   Scarlett has been told that everything that happens during Caraval is only an elaborate performance. But she nevertheless becomes enmeshed in a game of love, heartbreak, and magic with the other players in the game. And whether Caraval is real or not, she must find Tella before the five nights of the game are over, a dangerous domino effect of consequences is set off, and her sister disappears forever.

Review:


   I'm so pleased that you could make it.
   Back at BEA 2016, Caraval was one of the most anticipated YA book drops. The only thing was, they never told anyone when the book was going to be dropped. So in a very Caraval fashion, they dropped it randomly and very mysteriously in bags that the publisher was handing out. The author also happened to be there signing books too. Although I hadn't really heard much about the book, I was willing to give it a try especially it was supposed to be a magical book that was supposed to be focused on the relationship between two sisters.
   It took me a long time to finish Caraval, something about the book never clicked with me, making me feel like I couldn't care less about the characters. My sisters and I have a very close relationship, and so I understood where our protagonist got her drive to partake in Caraval, to save her sister, but in the end I just could never connect with them. Everything about the characters just felt like I was experiencing them through a glass wall.
   Once thing that I could appreciate about Caraval, was the magic that went into the story. I loved that in a way it was a carnival, but at the same time it was something different. The roses, and the carousel were my favourite.
   Caraval didn't end up becoming a favourite of mine, but in the end I think I was still able to enjoy it to a point where I'd still go out of my way to pick up it's sequel when it releases. The sequel to Caraval is set to release in 2018.

Rating:



Favourite Quote:

"The past is only mostly set, and the future is harder to change than you would think."

Recommend to People Who Enjoy:


Young Adult, Fantasy, Adventure, Magic, Games, Mind Tricks



Tuesday, June 6, 2017

Book Review: Dreamfall by Amy Plum

Release Date: May 2nd, 2017
Read: April 5-7th, 2017
Publisher: HarperTeen
Series: Dreamfall, #1
Format: Signed ARC, 288 pages
Source: Author in exchange for honest review




Description from GoodReads:


   Cata Cordova suffers from such debilitating insomnia that she agreed to take part in an experimental new procedure. She thought things couldn’t get any worse...but she was terribly wrong.

   Soon after the experiment begins, there’s a malfunction with the lab equipment, and Cata and six other teen patients are plunged into a shared dreamworld with no memory of how they got there. Even worse, they come to the chilling realization that they are trapped in a place where their worst nightmares have come to life. Hunted by creatures from their darkest imaginations and tormented by secrets they’d rather keep buried, Cata and the others will be forced to band together to face their biggest fears. And if they can’t find a way to defeat their dreams, they will never wake up.

Review:


   One of you is a psychopath.
   I've been in love with Amy Plum's writing since one faithful day in my local library when I picked up her debut, Die For Me, and finished it in one sitting. Her story, along with her writing made the series such a compelling read. Bounce forward to this previous fall, I learned about Plum's latest and greatest, Dreamfall. When I heard that it was a thriller that was combined with nightmares and monsters, I just knew that I was going to be hooked.
   Dreamfall was a short and quick read, for most of the book I read thinking that it was supposed to be a standalone novel. Imagine my surprise and frustration when the novel ended on a cliffhanger, alongside a bunch of loose ends. Shortly after I realized that it was in fact a duelogy, that was when I was able to appreciate the book more.
   Plum managed to take everyones worst nightmare and include it in Dreamfall, in one way or another. Yes, she even included clowns. She even managed to include one of my worst nightmares as well. Using compelling and suspenseful writing, Plum pulls off one of the most creepy and incredible novels of the year.
   One of my favourite aspects of the novel was the different variety of characters that we met. With the novel taking place during an experimental procedure, each character had their own kinds of mental illnesses and PTSD that in the end made them the prefect subjects for the experiment, it also made them the perfect characters when it came to the story. Not only did these characters did these characters have to deal with the nightmares that were forced upon them, but they also had to be able to overcome and manage their illnesses and PTSD.
   Dreamfall has been one of my favourite reads of 2017 so far, with battling monsters and nightmares of the realistic and not so realistic variety, one can not help but need to know which characters makes it through their own personal hell. Neverwake, its Dreamfall's sequel releases May 2018, and it couldn't come any faster.

Rating:


Favourite Quote:


"The traitor spread honey atop pretty lies.
Only the love of his victims he asked.
For deceiving the lamb is the wolf's cherished prize.
And only in death is the true beast unmasked."

Recommend to People Who Enjoy:


Young Adult, Fantasy, Science Fiction, Horror, Mystery, Thriller, Monsters, Nightmares



Sunday, June 4, 2017

Book Review: Truthwitch by Susan Dennard

Release Date: January 5th, 2016
Read: May 12th-June 4th, 2017
Publisher: Tor Teen
Series: Witchlands, #1
Format: Paperback, 432 pages
Source: Bought




Description from GoodReads:



   In a continent on the edge of war, two witches hold its fate in their hands.

   Young witches Safiya and Iseult have a habit of finding trouble. After clashing with a powerful Guildmaster and his ruthless Bloodwitch bodyguard, the friends are forced to flee their home.

   Safi must avoid capture at all costs as she's a rare Truthwitch, able to discern truth from lies. Many would kill for her magic, so Safi must keep it hidden - lest she be used in the struggle between empires. And Iseult's true powers are hidden even from herself.

   In a chance encounter at Court, Safi meets Prince Merik and makes him a reluctant ally. However, his help may not slow down the Bloodwitch now hot on the girls' heels. All Safi and Iseult want is their freedom, but danger lies ahead. With war coming, treaties breaking and a magical contagion sweeping the land, the friends will have to fight emperors and mercenaries alike. For some will stop at nothing to get their hands on a Truthwitch.

Review:


   Sometimes justice was all about the small victories
   I've wanted to read Truthwitch since it released in early 2016, but of course my busy schedule always keeps me from all the books that I want to read. It was when I received an ARC of it's sequel, Windwitch, that I finally when out and bought a copy.
   Truthwitch wasn't what I was expecting, not at all. In a bunch of ways it reminded me of a bunch of other books mixed together, and could be confusing at times.  Throughout the book, I constantly felt Throne of Glass and The Infernal Devices vibes. From the two chosen ones, and kingdoms fighting, I couldn't help but always compare the storyline of Truthwitch to ToG. Then when it came to the characters, I always pictured Merik and Kullen as Will and Jem from TID.
   Overall, I did enjoy the witch powers that the kingdoms had, and their tattoos that marked who they were. I think the different levels to the powers, and the different powers themselves were fascinating. It made me curious as to all the different levels and kinds of powers that could be seen throughout the series.
   One thing stood constant throughout the book for me, I hardcore shipped Safiya and Iseult. With the connection they have as friends, it just felt like it could be something more in the end. So with the direction that the book went, I was a little disappointed but I still have hope for it to happen in the next two books or so.
   It took me a good while to get into Truthwitch, but in the end I'm happy to have picked it up. I look forward to seeing what happens to our characters in Windwitch.

Rating:


Favourite Quote:


"I’ll always follow you, Safi, and you’ll always follow me. Threadsisters to the end."

Recommend to People Who Enjoy:


Young Adult, Fantasy, Witches, Magic, Chosen Ones, Sisters




Friday, June 2, 2017

June TBR Pile 2017


   So I know that the list of books for this month is kind of huge, but it's basically all the current books that I need to review for publishers. I haven't been in the mood for reading lately, so I'm hoping that by making my TBR all my review books then I'll have more chances of getting out of my stump. Anyways, here's hoping to me actually getting through some of these books this month! 


June TBR Pile:











 

   That's the list for this month! I can't wait to read these bad boys!



Wednesday, May 31, 2017

May Wrap Up 2017

   These past couple months have been busy, finishing up with school and just trying to get into the groove of blogging and reading again. To be completely honest, it's been tough. I don't know if it's just because I haven't found the right book to read after A Court of Wings and Ruin, or if I just don't feel like I have anything to say. Either way, me buying/receiving books certainly hasn't stopped. I think this month has brought in the most books than any other month in a while, including Christmas. I've even had to reorganize my bookshelves to make more room for them! 
   I've become pretty much obsessed with the hashtag #BooksForTrade on twitter, basically trading for every Unicorn (Special/Rare ARC), that is important to me and that I can get my hands on. This month alone I received two, and traded for four others. Because of all this trading, I've been debating on writing a post about my favourite unicorns that I own, what do you guys say about that? 
   With my reading slowing down, my books to review has been piling up. So for the month of June, my plans for reading will literally just be books that I need to review, and maybe Lord of Shadows because that book calls to me when I sleep and it's driving me crazy. Anyways, expect to see my June TBR for my next post.
   Besides constantly trading ARCs, I haven't really been up to anything else that's book related. I have been doing a lot of stuff with friends though.
   For May Long Weekend my friends and I took a road trip to Grand Forks, ND to just hang out and do some shopping. Unfortunately the Target we went to was a bust when it came to good books, but otherwise the trip was a lot of fun!
   Besides that, everything has been me at home just doing stuff around the house while also looking for a second part time job for the summer. But we'll see how that goes! 
   That's it for this month! Time for the stats!  

Books Read:


Book Haul:

A Book of Spirits and Thieves by Morgan Rhodes (Hardcover)
The Darkest Magic by Morgan Rhodes (Hardcover)
Trouble is a Friend of Mine by Stephanie Tromly (Hardcover)
Beware that Girl by Teresa Toten (Hardcover)
This Savage Song by Victoria Schwab (Hardcover)
Julia Vanishes by Catherine Egan (Hardcover)
Everyone We've Been by Sarah Everett (Hardcover)
Tales from the Shadowhunter Academy by Cassandra Clare, Sarah Bree Brennan, Maureen Johnson, Robin Wasserman (ARC)
Trouble Makes a Comeback by Stephanie Tromly (Hardcover)
Crystal Storm by Morgan Rhodes (Hardcover)
A Court of Wings and Ruin by Sarah J Maas (Indigo Exclusive Hardcover)
A Court of Wings and Ruin by Sarah J Maas (US Hardcover)
The Crown's Fate by Evelyn Skye (Hardcover)
The Sandcastle Empire by Kayla Olson ( ARC)
The Hearts We Sold by Emily Lloyd-Jones (ARC)
You Bring the Distant Near by Mitali Perkins (ARC)
Wild Beauty by Anna-Marie McLemore (ARC)
Retribution Trails by Erin Bowman (ARC)
The Gentlemen's Guide to Vice and Virtue by Mackenzi Lee (ARC)
Lord of Shadows by Cassandra Clare (Hardcover)
Generation One by Pittacus Lore (ARC)
The Last Magician by Lisa Maxwell (ARC)
Throne of Glass by Sarah J. Maas (ARC)
Godsgrave by Jay Kristoff (ARC)


A HUGE thank you to some many AMAZING people this month, to my sister for the pre-order birthday present of Crown's Fate, to Sabrina for getting me an ARC of Generation One, to McNally for always hooking me up with great ARCs, MYRCA for the amazing year and letting me take home some amazing books, and Harper, Raincoast, Simon & Schuster, St. Martin's Press and Hachette Canada for the incredible review copies!

Books Reviewed:


June Releases that I'm excited For:


   That's it for this month! Hopefully I find that right book that gets me back into reading!

Friday, May 26, 2017

Recommendation Fridays: The Gold Seer Trilogy by Rae Carson

   I first read Walk on Earth a Stranger by Rae Carson for the Two Thumbs Up Program at McNally Robinson, like most of my improv picks at McNally, I picked this one up because the Twitterverse was gushing about how AMAZING it was. Having not read Rae Carson's previous series, I wasn't quite sure what I had in store for me. In the end I was seriously glad that I picked that baby up! The series has become one of my all time favourites, and has even resulted in me spending at least 10 months hunting down an ARC of Like a River Glorious, it's sequel. 

   The series is perfect for people who love giving historical things a little twist! Taking place during the Gold Rush in the USA, the main character has the power to sense gold. The book only really focuses on her power about 40% of the time, so you are really able to focus on the historical parts of it. Honestly, it's just the cutest cowboyish book that I recommend everyone pick up. 


The series would probably be best for people who like the following books:
Historical Fiction, Fantasy, Westerns, Magic, The Gold Rush


Walk on Earth a Stranger by Rae Carson


Release Date: September 22nd, 2015
Publisher: Greenwillow Books
Series: The Gold Seer Trilogy, #1
Format: Hardcover, 436 pages



Description from GoodReads:


   Gold is in my blood, in my breath, even in the flecks in my eyes.

   Lee Westfall has a strong, loving family. She has a home she loves and a loyal steed. She has a best friend—who might want to be something more.

   She also has a secret.

   Lee can sense gold in the world around her. Veins deep in the earth. Small nuggets in a stream. Even gold dust caught underneath a fingernail. She has kept her family safe and able to buy provisions, even through the harshest winters. But what would someone do to control a girl with that kind of power? A person might murder for it.

   When everything Lee holds dear is ripped away, she flees west to California—where gold has just been discovered. Perhaps this will be the one place a magical girl can be herself. If she survives the journey.

Like A River Glorious by Rae Carson

Release Date: September 27th, 2016
Publisher: Greenwillow Books
Series: The Gold Seer Trilogy, #2
Format: Hardcover, 412 pages



Description from GoodReads:


   After a harrowing journey across the country, Leah Westfall and her friends have finally arrived in California and are ready to make their fortunes in the Gold Rush. Lee has a special advantage over the other new arrivals in California—she has the ability to sense gold, a secret known only by her handsome best friend Jefferson and her murdering uncle Hiram.

   Lee and her friends have the chance to be the most prosperous settlers in California, but Hiram hasn’t given up trying to control Lee and her power. Sabotage and kidnapping are the least of what he’ll do to make sure Lee is his own. His mine is the deepest and darkest in the territory, and there Lee learns the full extent of her magical gift, the worst of her uncle, and the true strength of her friendships. To save everyone, she vows to destroy her uncle and the empire he is building—even at the cost of her own freedom.

Check out Ohana Reads' Review here!


Into the Bright Unknown by Rae Carson

Release Date: October 10th, 2017
Publisher: Greenwillow Books
Series: The Gold Seer Trilogy, #3
Format: Hardcover, 432 pages



Description from GoodReads:


   Leah Westfall, her fiancĂ© Jefferson, and her friends have become rich in the California Territory, thanks to Lee’s magical ability to sense precious gold. But their fortune has made them a target, and when a dangerous billionaire sets out to destroy them, Lee and her friends decide they’ve had enough—they will fight back with all their power and talents. Lee’s magic is continuing to strengthen and grow, but someone is on to her—someone who might have a bit of magic herself. The stakes are higher than ever as Lee and her friends hatch a daring scheme that could alter the California landscape forever. With a distinctive young heroine and a unique interpretation of American history, Into the Bright Unknown strikes a rich vein of romance, magic, and adventure, bringing the Gold Seer Trilogy to its epic conclusion. Includes a map and an author’s note.


   And that's the Gold Seer Trilogy by Rae Carson! I hold this series very dearly to my heart, so I hope you guys will pick it up and give it a try!


Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Waiting on Wednesday: (62)

A Poison Dark and Drowning 

Jessica Cluess
Kingdom on Fire, #2
Random House Books for Young Readers
Expected: September 19th, 2017


Description from GoodReads:


   The magicians want her to lead.
   The sorcerers want her to lie.
   The demons want her blood.
   Henrietta wants to save the one she loves.
   But will his dark magic be her undoing?


   Henrietta doesn't need a prophecy to know that she's in danger. She came to London to be named the chosen one, the first female sorcerer in centuries, the one who would defeat the Ancients. Instead, she discovered a city ruled by secrets. And the biggest secret of all: Henrietta is not the chosen one.

   Still, she must play the role in order to keep herself and Rook, her best friend and childhood love, safe. But can she truly save him? The poison in Rook's system is transforming him into something monstrous as he begins to master dark powers of his own. So when Henrietta finds a clue to the Ancients past that could turn the tide of the war, she persuades Blackwood, the mysterious Earl of Sorrow-Fell, to travel up the coast to seek out strange new weapons. And Magnus, the brave, reckless flirt who wants to win back her favor, is assigned to their mission. Together, they will face monsters, meet powerful new allies, and uncover the most devastating weapon of all: the truth.

Why I Want It:


   A Shadow Bright and Burning happened to be one of the many ARCs that I picked up at BEA 2016, and since I had the ARC already, I decided to sign up for the Blog Tour. Who would have thought that I'd eventually fall in love with this sudden chance of a book? Since September of last year I've been dying to get my hands on the sequel! Magicians, Sorcerers, Magic, Demons and chosen ones that aren't actually the chosen ones, who could want anything less?


   That's my Waiting on Wednesday this week! Will you be picking up A Poison Dark and Drowning? What are you waiting on this week?



Sunday, May 21, 2017

Book Review: A Court of Wings and Ruin by Sarah J. Maas

Release Date: May 2nd, 2017
Read: May 3rd-6th, 2017
Publisher: Bloomsbury USA Children's
Series: A Court of Thorns and Roses, #3
Format: Indigo Exclusive Hardcover, 705 pages
Source: Bought




Description from GoodReads:


   A nightmare, I’d told Tamlin. I was the nightmare.

   Feyre has returned to the Spring Court, determined to gather information on Tamlin’s maneuverings and the invading king threatening to bring Prythian to its knees. But to do so she must play a deadly game of deceit—and one slip may spell doom not only for Feyre, but for her world as well. As war bears down upon them all, Feyre must decide who to trust amongst the dazzling and lethal High Lords—and hunt for allies in unexpected places.

Review:


Contains Minor Spoilers:

   Only you can decide what breaks you, Cursebreaker. Only you.
   I knew two things when finishing A Court of Mist and Fury one year ago; one, being that the wait for A Court of Wings and Ruin was going to being even more unbearable than the one for A Court of Mist and Fury was, and two, that I would never be able to prepare myself for what was to come in the final book of the trilogy. Of course where Sarah J Maas is concerned, I was not wrong.
   The year leading up to ACOWAR's release was certainly a hard one, from the long countdown of its release to trying not to predict too much of what I thought might occur in the book. Doing so to avoid being disappointed if what I predicted or wanted to happen didn't occur.
   A Court of Wings and Ruin was everything I could have wanted, but in the end I still couldn't help but feel a little unsatisfied with the ending. My major problem with the book, one that I still think about a week after initially reading the book, was that Sarah J Maas left too many loose threads and unfinished plot lines. A little while after A Court of Mist and Fury was released, the publishing announced that Maas was to write three more novels in the same universe as the characters in the series, as well as two novellas. These novels and novellas were to be set around secondary characters from the originally series. If you went into A Court of Wings and Ruin knowing this little bit of information like I did, then you understood why Maas left the loose threads like she did. But it still didn't stop me from feeling extremely dissatisfied. When reading a final book in a series, I would like to have finished the book feeling like the story has been completed and everything resolved. I never got that feeling from A Court of Wings and Ruin, and thus can't help but be angry with it. This being the first final book in a series that Sarah J. Maas has written, I had high hopes for how she would wrap up her book series. But now I don't know how I feel about her ending her Throne of Glass series in 2018, will she actually end her series like she said she would, or would she leave us unsatisfied again and continue dragging on the series for the sake of it being popular? In the end, the unsatisfied feeling remains on my shoulders a week after completing the book.
   The book brought back all my favourite characters from A Court of Mist and Fury, and even gave me a bunch of new characters to love. We were finally introduced to all of the High Lords (officially anyway), and were able to to see a few more of the courts that we were not able to experience in the previous books. In particular, I loved the High Lord of the Day Court, Helion, with his charisma and humour. We also met the High Lord of Winter and his mate, Kallias and Viviane, who I think will both have a part one way or another when it comes to the continuing novels or novellas. Their stories felt as if they still had much to say, the same went with many of the other characters. These were the loose ends that appeared continuously throughout the novel. Along with Kallias and Viviane, it was clear that Maas still had a story to tell for Drakon and Miryam, Vassa, Nesta and Cassian, Elain, Lucian and Helion, and even Mor and Armen. Although I am excited to be able to experience their stories later, I couldn't help but be disappointed with the bare mininmun that we got in A Court of Wings and Ruin. I wanted their stories to end with Feyre's, happy and free, but now we must suffer with questions until the next books release.
   With how A Court of Mist and Fury ended, it was clear that Tamlin was to be apart of the next book, and of course he was. Unfortunately for him, Maas tried to redeem his character in this book. I never liked Tamlin, from the second I met him in A Court of Thorns and Roses, I could never connect with him and as the series continued, I learned why. With him in this book, there was bound to be tension and hate surrounding his character, but in the end Maas decided that she wanted to redeem him which personally made me uncomfortable as well as make me wonder why bother? His character was ruined already, so why bother trying to fix him? If anything, I think Maas just didn't feel like having to introduce a solution if he died with out having living relatives to rule the court. Even with so low standards in the first place, I was disappointed even further with his character.
   I felt as if A Court of Wings and Ruin was a completely different sort of book when compared to its siblings. With the first two books being about Feyre finding love, as well as herself, it didn't leave any windows open for this book. Having already found happiness, the intense connection we had to her in the previous books just wasn't there. Of course swooning still occurred when Feyre and Rhysand were together, but it felt like the book was more of a book of plot than anything else with all the characters already having been established.
   With that being said, the plot itself was very thought out and keep its audience compelled to continue on with the book. From living in the Spring Court, to returning home, and then the war. Every little detail planned out, and necessary in one way or another, making it a true Sarah J Maas novel. From discoveries made with the Bone Carver and the Weaver, as well as perhaps even some connections to her Throne of Glass series.
   There have been many books where the lead up to "the final battle" have been hyped to the point where the final battle feels small and practically nothing. With the war in the book, I was very satisfied with how it ended, even blown away in some cases. With just the right amount of death, blood, surprises and destruction, you couldn't have hoped for more.
   I have many different favourite parts from the novel but the ones that stood out the most for me were when the Court of Dreams were reunited with Feyre, the meeting of/meeting the High Lords, as well as when the three particular human ships sailed in to help the battle. The last one being one of the few different scenes that left me emotionally unstable throughout the book.
   A Court of Wings and Ruin wasn't what I was expecting from the third book in the A Court of Thorns and Roses series. There were many cases where I was very unsatisfied, but then there were also many cases where I don't think Sarah J Maas could have done better. The series has been apart of my life for two and a half years, and has certainly become a large part of it. A Court of Wings and Ruin may not have become my new favourite in the series, but I am still sad to see the series go. Now the countdown begins for when Maas can bring us back to the beautiful world that she has written.


Rating:




Favourite Quotes:


"Be happy, Feyre."

"You belong to all of us, and we belong to you."

"Remember that you are a wolf. And you can not be caged."

"When you erupt, girl, make sure it is felt across worlds."

"Night Triumphant - and the Stars Eternal."

"Kindess can thrive, even amongst cruelty."

"Leave this world.... a better place than how you found it."

Recommend to People Who Enjoy:


Young Adult, New Adult, High Fantasy, Fae, Magic, War, Battles, Intense Romance