A Million Worlds With You

Happy belated book birthday to this finale of the Firebird Trilogy by Claudia Gray!

f16_amillionworldswithyou

Okay I’ve been swooning over the cover since its reveal but honestly how am I supposed to get over it?

If you haven’t read any of this series, starting with A Thousand Pieces of You, now is the perfect perfect perfect time to binge it! The three books have got action, romance, and dimension hopping! Honestly if you love any genre this book will appeal to you and it is an EPIC tale that spans these three books. Plus the first two covers are just as beautiful as this one. Seriously this a series that is worth your time and attention! Aaaand if you’re someone who hasn’t read them it’s time to stop reading this! bye-bye!

see ya!

Phew, now that they’re gone we can talk about this book! In case you forgot, we left off at the end of book two with evil Marguerite having taken own our beloved heroine. Will our Marguerite be able to get her out? What plans does evil Marguerite (hereby dubbed Wicked) have for this dimension? What about the Home Office’s plans to destroy all those other universes? Will Marguerite and Paul be able to reconcile the many flaws they’ve seen in each other through their travels? Will everyone even survive this? We’ve got a lot of loose ends to tie up here.

If you’ve already come this far in the series I would not advise turning back now. Despite some problems I had with this final installment, it is definitely worth finishing the series because of the beautiful worlds Marguerite yet again gets to see and because of the more hypothetical/ethical/endlessly conflicting questions it really begs of us. As a warning, this one is definitely more melodramatic than the previous two and the dimensions are less fleshed-out than in the past as Marguerite hops frequently in a frantic effort to catch Wicked. If you read the other two for the world-building, you may end up disappointed. Also if you’re reading for the love triangle you will definitely be disappointed, as it’s barely even a question in this book. The basics are that this one, to me, felt rushed and also didn’t play off of what had been set up by the previous two books. If you read it, more details to come.

If you didn’t, now’s your time to hop out.

Serious spoilers coming up!

Let’s start with what I liked:
The cliffhanger at the end of book 2 and the beginning of this book both really play up this suspense. I love the way we get Marguerite in a life or death situation and then look back to what happened immediately after book two is as ingenious as it is frustrating.
The worlds in this book and the imagination it takes to create them will never cease to amaze me. Even without the detail and backstory that the previous books got, the idea of dimension hopping and the believability of each world that exists is beautiful to me.
The characters have obviously been given so much thought! To create so many versions of the same character that are different even with their essential similarities, you have to have really thought about your character and every potential flaw, how their insecurities might effect them in a million (HA) different situations.
Throughout this whole series I’ve loved the action. I like how it’s kept realistic — Londonverse Marguerite had to die because there’s no way any Marguerite would have been able to hold on to that cable. If she had miraculously pulled herself up or held on I would have had to question so many things because that’s just not her. And yet when the Home Office workers raid the rebels, that moment is also completely believable because people do what they need to do when the time comes. It’s so rare that this stuff is messed up in this series which is super refreshing.
The stuff about splintering was so cool! I did not see that coming, and it is so cool to think of the whole process of putting a person back together that way. Also insanely creepy to think of what Home Office’s Josie could have been.
All in all the series is just really fleshed out and I love Marguerite’s point of view like 95% of the time. She really does give a new angle to almost everything she sees which is so cool (but not as cool when other characters in the book point it out. sorry.)

What I didn’t like:
Honestly where was Theo? The Berkeleyverses Theo has been a main character throughout this whole series, no matter if the Triadverse one had him taken over for most of the first book. He is, for two books, Marguerite’s closest friend and confidant and suddenly he’s barely even in this book! I’m a sucker for Theo no matter what but I swear even if I weren’t this would be so strange and off-putting to me. She’s done everything with him and he has been so ready to always follow her through dimensions! It’s unbelievable to me that he wouldn’t want to go on this HUGE trip that changes EVERYTHING. Also he gets totally jipped because he still comes in when she needs him the most! Yeah yeah it was Paul in the Romeverse okay fine but when she’s confronted with Wicked Theo shows up to save the day!……….. and promptly disappears again. whatever.
               Also okay is this a love triangle or not? ATPoY set us up to believe that Marguerite and Paul were a statistic, a fact of fate that nothing could alter even though Theo also loves her in most every universe, every time. TTSAY goes to bat to prove that Theo is ALSO a probability, arguably just as likely as Marguerite/Paul, 50/50, totally up to her. While she tries to get Paul back and sees all this bad in him that she didn’t see before, we see Marguerite get closer and closer to Theo. She effectively starts to wonder what’s best for her and if she could actually love Theo if she could only forget about the Triadverse imposter who took over his body for long. We are set up for Marguerite to be making a choice in this book, because she doesn’t seem to know if she can even love Paul after seeing him in the Mafiaverse. But when AMWwY starts, her mind is made up. Marguerite is all about Paul this whole book, so much so that I think it distracts from the story. SO not only is that facet taken away completely unexpectedly, but also…
Marguerite starts whining and being so dramatic in this book. She’s all about Paul all the time, even when she thinks about saving the multiverse it’s about him and her future with him (or lack thereof).  All the stuff about believing in himself and her sappy talk/thoughts about how the other Pauls do or don’t believe, how they’re related to the Paul she used to have…. got in the way. IMO.
Too many worlds! I get that we’ve been to some of them and understand them, but I loved that we got to stay in some of the worlds for kind of a long time in the other two books. It helped to get to know those versions of the characters and it was just really nice to jump and relax for a while, jump and relax. This one didn’t have that and it also ruined the depth of each dimension, not to mention the fact that it felt like it was a ploy to make the plot feel like it was moving. Since we really stayed in the same place most of the book. *cough cough*
More than in the other two, the characters are very introspective in this one, to the point that it’s unnatural. There are a lot of statements that just took me out of the action, like when Paul is forced not to kill Romola because she’s pointing the gun at Marguerite and she actually thinks “Would he have done it? We’ll never know for sure.” Those two sentences grated on me the rest of the book. I’m still mad about them, honestly. *shudders* AND the Home Office’s Henry/Sophia are so understanding when Marguerite destroys their reforming Josie in the case! They’re literally like “we get why you did that. It makes sense” but these people are supposed to be DERANGED. Heads messed up. They should react so much more differently! *deep breath* it’s okay. It’s. okay.
So obviously I have my issues with this as a closer to this series. Even the ending seemed anticlimactic and even sudden since the rest of the book really felt like it hadn’t moved that much. Triadverse Theo was the unsung hero and honestly the main event of the book. Soviet Russia was cute! The clone thing was awesome, but an obvious plot necessity once you see how she uses it. Bottom line I loved this series as a whole and it will still forever have my heart because the first two are SO GOOD. This one just fell so short of the others that I’m finding it hard to gush to my friends about this book that I had waited so long for. That’s so weird for me. This never happens, and I am sad in a few ways but mostly that I’ll never hear from Theo or Marguerite or Paul or the Doctors ever again.

It’s so hard to say goodbye!!!! *rereads the series*

 

 

 

Three Dark Crowns

Wowowowowowowowow I was so excited for this book.

If you read my post about books I was excited for in September, you saw this there and you know that I was slightly obsessed after I read the free sample that Epic Reads posted on their website. I’m not saying I was disappointed, I’m just saying it was not what I expected.

Quick recap: This is a fantasy on the island of Fennbirn, where queens are born once a generation as triplets. You’d think the first one to pop out would automatically be the queen, but we’ve gotta even the playing field here. To make it all fair, the queens come of age in their teens and then they fight to the death. Kill their sisters. It’s OKAY, they were separated before they could form an actual familial bond.
There are three different factions of what I’ll call magic around the island. Poisoners (Queen Katharine) can eat/drink/bathe in poison without feeling the effects, Elementals (Queen Mirabella) control -da da da da!- the elements, and Naturalists (Queen Arsinoe) can bloom flowers, grow trees, and control animals of their choosing. They’ve been raised their whole lives to kill one another, but when push comes to shove will they really do it?

This book is definitely worth the read! 10/10 would recommend! If you love fantasy and world building you’ll like it. Romance gains more presence as the story goes on but not enough to distract from the plot and not enough detail to deter the young ones. Go ahead, try it out, IF YOU DON’T GASP AT THE LAST LINE YOU’RE NOT HUMAN.

 

NOW DON’T READ UNLESS YOU WANT IT RUINED.

Really.

Goodbye.

 

So before I read this I was doing my thing looking at reviews that said it was boring and people were so disappointed and it was not good blah blah blah. I don’t know what book they read but it was not the Three Dark Crowns I got my hands on. Okay, like I said before, it wasn’t what I was expecting. But also I for some reason thought this was a standalone (silly me, those don’t exist anymore) so I was pretty surprised that it was moving so slowly. I really thought it was going to start in the middle of the action but hey I didn’t know about Fennbirn’s ceremonies and stuff so who am I to judge them? I will admit it was slow. I wish it HAD started more in the middle, maybe cut some chapters before they all end up in their camps together?

There was just a lot of world building. A lot of world building… for a relatively simple world. Maybe I’m the only one, but I got the idea way before the three groups came together. There was also a LOT of political maneuvering, and much is still left unknown. I’m confused by the head priestess and head poisoner’s roles so far, they have been constantly lurking while honestly not that important to the story. Wondering if they’ll be doing backstage deals throughout the next book(s). I also had NO idea that the outside world would be so important and so different and detached from Fennbirn. It’s super intriguing and I can’t wait to see what part that plays in the books to come.

Romances in this book are pointless. Why were they there, what plot point did they serve other than to make me hate the male characters? Hopefully answers to come in book 2 because I HATE YOU JOSEPH. I don’t care how much Jules likes him (honestly don’t care about Jules tbh) because he is a disgusting sleezeball and I cannot be invested in his love life. I was set to like Pietyr. I did like him. And then he destroyed it. Why would you do that to me Pietyr? Why? Even though he was the most likable, Billy was unnecessary. He did not need to come to the island before the other suitors. BE HONEST.

BUT THE END. Once you get to that last 1/4 or 1/3 of the book it’s a race. It’s intense and capturing. I just wish that there had been more of that in the beginning! Seriously I love Kendare Blake’s voice in this, don’t mistake what I’m trying to say. It’s dark and foreboding just like the story always should be, and that’s something to be proud of when mostly it’s describing the every day life of three teenage girls. I was impressed with the keeping of that darkly (sorry it’s really the only word I can use) compelling tone while being wooed by boys in the best way. I just would have loved more major events and less mundane occurrences.

And and and and and Arsinoe!!!! She was my rollercoaster ride for this book. I rooted for her at first because she was the underdog. I loved her, I hated her, I was mad at her and I agreed with her and then the last line happened and everything went out the window. I mean it changes EVERYTHING. Can there even be a competition now? How did they possibly mix the queens up? Did the girls as children plan that? Did their guardian put them up to it, purposely give a family the wrong child? Why why why why?

One last thing (seriously I promise)… the obligatory semi-political message we can all get behind. GIRLS RUN THIS ISLAND. It was shoved down your throat gently but thoroughly and I have not seen mention of it yet. The outsiders talk about how coming to Fennbirn is so different because the GIRLS are in charge, not the men. And how many major male characters are in this book? Baaaaaaasically 3. and I hate 2 1/2 of them. All the political dealings are female, the man is only used to produce children, AND the woman gets to pick him (not the other way around). If that’s not opposite and totally cool idk what is.

Overall great premise great story but very bogged down with filler and unnecessary characters. Still a good read and still a series I will definitely see through! Can’t wait to see angry Katharine, should be a treat!

 

Empire of Storms

I’m officially writing this from the afterlife because I finished this a couple days ago and I am STILL dead. I think about it all the time and just want the next book!!!!!! Okay if you haven’t read any of Sarah J. Maas’s Throne of Glass series stop reading this right. now. and go GET THAT BOOK. start from the beginning, go all the way through book 5, you’ve got bout 14,000,000 pages so that’ll keep you busy for a while. Take your time to get over the emotional rollercoaster that is this series thus far, and then come back and read this and all the other reviews. Make sure you’ve got a whole naval fleet at your disposal because the ships you’re going to need for this series are endless.

Celaena Sardothien’s journey started a long time ago in Throne of Glass. She’s feisty, she’s lovable (for a highly strained assassin), and she’s a storm to be weathered. She’s secretive, she’s volatile, she is “cataclysmic.” “One does not deal with Celaena Sardothien. One survives her.” In this one she shows us that her full power has still not been shown. Her destiny (should she/we choose to accept it) is finally given to us straight, and we get one extremely important POV that we have not yet seen.
BUT THERE ARE STILL ENDLESS QUESTIONS

from here on out there will be spoilers because I can’t hold it in any longer.

seriously.

okay.

 

Things I love: Manon. Manon Manon Manon. If I were a member of any group in this series, I would want to be one of her Thirteen. The way they stand up for each other in touching and inspiring and come on who doesn’t want a cuddly wyvern to call their own? The animals are ruthless and lovable honestly there’s nothing else to it. Even depressed, beaten-down, life-altered Manon does not give in to the people chasing her and the myriad of times she should have died. And when someone just tells her to step into a witch mirror because she’s the iron half of the equation? Manon says sure NBD. What a role model. I’d go to battle with her and the Thirteen behind me.
Hearing from Elena! Not gonna lie I didn’t even know I was missing this until it came up. Her POV was sparse but welcome and all the answers it gave! Starting off with it was just confusing enough and at the end O.M.G that tie-in with Nehemia. Serious life-changing info right there. And it brings up the question: was this Aelin’s destiny always or was it chosen for her by these two? Why not Dorian. (I know they give some reasoning but still. Seems pretty un-destined if other humans decided…) And that moment where Gavin doesn’t tell her about the lies the sword heard? WHAT WERE THE LIES. WHAT. *faints* *wakes up to ask one more question* why. did. Manon. have. to hear. all. this. It can’t just be due to her Crochan heritage! There is something bigger here. She and Aelin were brought together from almost the beginning and there must be something bigger!!!!!
Rowan? the question mark is because I actually have not been a fan of Rowan in past books. To me he really steps up to the challenge here and becomes more real (except for some choice scenes to be brought up later). He gets a bit annoying as he’s whining about not having anything to offer Aelin because as we can all see she wants you anyway buuuuuuuuuuut seeing him beg all his cousins like that and have them actually come for him really touched my heart. May or may not have gasped.
ELIDE. AND. LORCAN. Honestly this is my strongest ship in this book right now. I’m always a fan of the uber-powerful characters so Lorcan was a go-to for me…. Seriously how can they be hating on him and then turn around and lock him in a sewer with a beast hoping he kills it for them? We all see what you’re doing, Rowan/Aelin. You cannot hide this from us. Anyway watching him soften up and be more open with Elide was some heartwarming reading and she is just such a STRONG character which leads me to another thing I love about (all the ToG books)….
Who run the world? Girls. While there are many guys in this book and scenes in which the guys are necessary, things that could not be done without them, and their voices are present in the POV changes, the girls are still what drive this book. They’re the ones hatching the plots, seeing them through. The girls are the ones working round the clock behind the scenes to get these armies together. Aelin/Rowan may be an unstoppable combo because of their magic but Aelin/Lysandra just proved to be equally as strong in this book. Manon is BRUTAL throughout but as I just mentioned her Elide is not to be forgotten. She bosses Lorcan around. L.O.R.C.A.N. He is centuries (literally over 500 years) older than her and she does not have one care in the world to give. She has a plan and he is simply there to help her carry it out. beautiful. Don’t get me wrong, I love our boys…. but these girls are stealing the show. *snaps*
The end!!!!!!!!! I almost don’t even know if this goes in the love or hate pile because it was such a zinger I was so set for the big victory to close us out and then she goes and gets taken by Meave…. Which I could accept other than the fact that all these allies show up right. after. that???? *sobs* it was too much. I am a huge sucker for scenes like the one where all the Whitethorn cousins come together for Rowan to take on Meave’s armada, and the arrival of the Ashryvers and the Silent Assassins hit it home. Double whammy of those in-battle feels. Triple it when you recall the entrance of the Thirteen.*swoon sigh* I thought for sure someone was going to break out of the hold of that blood-oath though and honestly low-key mad at Gavriel for not getting up to do anything???? but I digress.

Things I didn’t love:  Relieved because I thought this would be an unpopular opinion but after I read other reviews I find it’s not…. too many sexual scenes with Aelin and Rowan! I understand the first time was a big deal. It was rebellious, it was a step they hadn’t taken yet, it was POWERFUL because wow their magic. But after that? We got it. They’re into each other. We’re into them. We want a happy ending for them. Can we see more of what else is going on?
Didn’t see much mention of this as a negative but……… Dorian. I used to love his POV. I’d rush through all the others trying to get to it. I’d see where he was next so I knew how long I had to wait. In this installment, his POV felt like pulling teeth. He was moody and withdrawn and way to the side of all the action. I understand his feelings, his newfound darkness, depression, but his voice was so forced in this book and I was thoroughly disappointed by it. Poor Dorian. I’m hoping for a comeback for you, bud.
Aedion’s POV. Sorry not sorry. I adore his love for Lysandra, I like how he comes off as an innocent character, I don’t love how much of a brute he is. For all the intelligence in this court Aedion is certainly not on the same level. Okay I get that battle is his thing, war is his specialty, but still…. There’s just something about him that grates on me. Although I do totally respect him for the way he dealt with his father. Tell him like it is, Aedion. You can open up to him at your own pace.

As you can tell I was not disappointed by this book. When Aelin went to Wendlyn I was a little turned off because of the dark place she was in; it was hard for me to read. Even the next installment was a little slow for my taste but this book brings it all in together. Celaena peeks through the Aelin that has become the constant character and they really start to merge for me in this book, showing all the many facets that she contains as such a volatile character. It’s also interesting to come at this off of ACoMaF, which it obviously has a lot of similarities to…. look at Aelin’s court and Rhysand’s court, the way they interact with each other as well as the simple fact of the myriad of characters that make it. Aelin and Rowan’s secret marriage/hello Rhysand and Feyre. Let’s not make too many Rhysand/Rowan comparisons though. We all know which one is a deeper, better character (it’s Rhysand). This world is so intertwined! I try to tell my friends about this book and I end up asking them if they’re going to read the series or if they just want the story because getting them hooked to the first book and telling them what’s really going on are two ENTIRELY different beasts. I love how complex it is, how many pieces there are that always always always come back into play. Aelin never forgets those debts that she’s owed and honestly you better not either or she will LOSE you because she is going to call them in and you’re going to be going back to old books wondering who that character is and where they came from and that’s what I love about this. Okay I obviously actually love a lot about it could keep writing for the next 6 years about but it’ll be as long as the book itself! I JUST LOVE HIGH FANTASY. I can’t get enough. I hope you feel the same and I hope you got to laugh, cry, be a wary bystander to very private moments, and feel ALL the feels in Empire of Storms!

September comes creeping in

This is actually not a book review but instead a show of the books I’m excited are coming in the near future!! With my orchestra auditions for school tomorrow and classes/rehearsals starting the day after, I’m not sure how often I’ll get to post but you know for sure I’ll be reading! So here we go….. anticipated reads coming up

 

The Thousandth Floor by Katherine McGee
This comes out on August 30th (ONLY TWO MORE DAYS) but I read the first three chapter via Epic Reads right here. Go ahead and check it out! Set in a future where your wealth is on display by the number floor you live on, it may seem like the people at the top have it all… But they are willing to do anything to get the one thing they don’t have. For Avery Fuller (genetically designed to be perfect) her desire is completely impossible. Backstabbing, secrets, and dystopia… what else could you want? Plus look at this cover!
Image result for the thousandth floor*sigh*

Empire of Storms by Sarah J. Maas
5th in the Throne of Glass series, I hope you have this preordered and ready to go because Aelin is not the type to wait for anyone! If you haven’t read any of these books yet you’ve got a lot of reading to do because they are not short and they are musts for any fantasy lover… the twists and turns are never-ending but the action is always the same! Putting the cover here just because FIERCE
Image result for empire of storms

Three Dark Crowns by Kendare Blake
Each generation three queens are born. Triplets, sisters, and eventually enemies. On their 16th birthdays, these girls will not decide who becomes THE queen by who was born first but instead by who lives to see the throne. *shivers* Okay seriously if the basic premise of this book doesn’t make you want to read I think you’re crazy but check out the first three chapters here. After you do, there’s NO WAY you won’t want to read the rest! The darkest of the dark fantasies, just the first three chapters had me guessing at what comes next and rooting for the sisters (just one more than the other two). Cover below, very fitting very creepy
Image result for Three Dark Crowns(can this come out tomorrow PLEASE)

Frost Like Night by Sara Raasch
Get ready Winterians because the final book in the Snow Like Ashes series, Frost Like Night, is almost here! Don’t want to spoil for those that may live under rocks, but the kingdom of Winter was destroyed, its citizens tortured for years, and the people make their final attempt at resurfacing as an independent nation in what is sure to be a thrilling conclusion… if you’re not ready for this third book start with Snow Like Ashes and go on from there! I’ll admit this series has not had me hooked as much as Throne of Glass, but even with that said I am definitely invested enough that this book will be a necessity (plus ALL the covers are beautiful).
Image result for frost like night

The Forgetting by Sharon Cameron
This is definitely going to be a weird kind of good and I can’t summarize it any better than the Epic Reads site so block quote coming your way.

Nadia lives in the city of Canaan, where life is safe and structured, hemmed in by white stone walls and no memory of what came before. But every twelve years the city descends into the bloody chaos of the Forgetting, a day of no remorse, when each person’s memories – of parents, children, love, life, and self – are lost. Unless they have been written. In Canaan, your book is your truth and your identity, and Nadia knows exactly who hasn’t written the truth. Because Nadia is the only person in Canaan who has never forgotten.

If this book is not a thrilling emotional roller coaster I will be SO disappointed. Even with the two series installments coming out, this definitely has the potential to be my favorite September read if its done right. Let’s just hope my high expectations don’t ruin the book for me!
Image result for the forgetting sharon cameronO.M.G

Thanks for making it this far!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! If NONE of these seem like your kind of thing, head right on over to this page to see even more books coming out in September! What a big month for book nerds this year!!!!! *heavy breathing* Can’t wait to get reading, hope y’all feel the same! (and good luck with school, keep your fingers crossed for me)

 

P.S Check out my Redbubble profile ! I have bookish stuff and some of my photography 🙂 bear with me through some rough works added, I’m still learning how to use all the programs!

 

A Study in Charlotte

Okay, I’ll be honest…. I read this mostly because I was watching the Sherlock TV show when I saw that it was a book. But also the whole concept is so cute and I love good male protagonists! Brittany Cavallaro’s A Study in Charlotte asks us as readers to imagine that the infamous Sherlock Holmes and his ever-present sidekick Watson not only existed but lived to pass their legacy down to their children.

Jaime Watson has some problems he doesn’t necessarily want to deal with. 1. His temper and 2. his father. When #1 earns him a rugby scholarship to a school in the US very close to where #2 lives, Watson fights the inevitable move-in day every step of the way… until he realizes that his counterpart in the Holmes family (Charlotte) attends the same school. He has wanted to meet her his whole life and has been kept from what he believes could be the greatest adventure of all by his mother, who see the Watson/Holmes relationships as unhealthy. First day of school and Charlotte wants nothing to do with this Watson… but that attitude just might change when their classmate is murdered.

Everything about this book is cute and fun. Watson’s voice is open and honest and just a little naive while Holmes plays a part in introducing him to the darker side of life. Holmes is mysterious and off-putting with her intellect and seemingly endless bag of skills and tricks. Her past is revealed at just the right times in just the right way as she opens up right when the reader can’t stand another minute of not knowing. James and Charlotte’s relationship is electric and captivating, something no book lover should want to miss. They are loving and volatile; can crack a joke and solve a mystery. As the tagline says – “You’ve never seen Watson and Holmes like this before.” I loved the easy, conversational tone Cavallaro takes in her writing as well as the characters and their relationships with each other.

On the other hand, there were a few times I felt that the book was dragging on. It seemed like the pair was stuck in a circle, always getting wrong leads and then being stuck at a dead end with only one option that Charlotte would not accept. And yet, that is part of the story’s charm. Just when you think Watson and Holmes have solved yet another crime, the whole case turns upside down or an new event catapults the situation to be even more dire.  Watson and Holmes are truly a dynamic duo, two unrelenting forces that are not always in agreement. They are stubborn and flawed and completely human, made better by being with each other.. Two kids that all too often seem like adults who probably learned to put up that wall because of their home situations. I think the most forced thing about this book was actually when they decided to call each other Watson and Holmes, and I look forward to a possibility that they’ll use first names instead in the future. Using only last names makes the relationship very professional and while they do work together they also have a level of intimacy that I think would make them use their given names. But that’s just me.

A Study in Charlotte is a quick read perfect for the end of the summer so if you haven’t checked it out yet go ahead! I swear you won’t regret it!

A Thousand Pieces of You

Claudia Gray’s Firebird series has NOT gotten enough attention IMO and I have become increasingly upset about it. About this time is when I came to the realization that I myself had not done my part and reviewed it!!! *dies* I usually don’t even go for science fiction, but this masterpiece is definitely science fiction and it’s DEFINITELY worth the read. (yes it is a series, yes book two is out, yes I’m waiting for book 3 )

Anyway, for all the excitement passed around about so many novels that come out, this one somehow slipped under the radar (for me) and I would never have found it if not for its STUNNING cover *swoons*.

^I mean, look at it.

Marguerite Caine is the artistic daughter of two super geniuses who have made it their goal to prove that there are millions, billions, trillions of dimensions out there. Imagine that every time we have to make a choice, we actually make both those choices and the universe splits. Now imagine we actually have a device that lets us travel the multiverse *drumroll* da dada da! the Firebird is born. (Firebird– a very small yet somehow very powerful device that moves matter and consciousness over dimensions) Naturally, there are some high up people that want this device for their own evil gain. When Marguerite’s father is killed by his own student, the vengeful daughter won’t let anything stop her from tracking him down – not even if it means crossing dimensions. Along with lovable sidekick Theo, Marguerite is out for blood as she demands retribution for this heinous crime.
The dimensions are astonishing, their differences and similarities both vast and fascinating, and Marguerite will come to know more about herself than she ever imagined. Could there be a more sinister plot at hand?

Marguerite is a beautiful character – intelligent, independent, and talented with a very unique view on the world. Growing up with her incredible parents has left her very open to the endless possibilities around her which makes her point of view easy and breathable for any reader. She loves her family enough that she would do anything for them, (obviously if she’s going to travel the multiverse looking for her dad) which is a flaw I think most anyone can relate to. While mostly practical she can be a little headstrong and tend to overreact, but this just makes her all the more real. Marguerite really wants to do the right thing by everyone – in any world. Her intellect is so refreshing because while she can wrap her head around some of the scientific work her parents and their students do, she loves her artwork and finds fulfillment in that without needing to feel inferior because the rest of the world thinks that her work is not as practical. (In case you couldn’t tell) The way this character is written is just so perfect to me that there was no way I wouldn’t enjoy the book. Throw in the typical YA heartthrob Theo and you’ve got any girl I know wrapped around your finger. A graduate assistant to the Caine’s work, Theo is a genius in his own right but is also handsome, hysterical, a bit of a rebel, and so so so lovable. I mean, he follows Marguerite into a place he doesn’t even know where is and works to find her every dimension jump.

The world building in this is also absolutely exquisite. We praise so many authors for coming up with one amazing fantasy world with tiny details and languages and yet Claudia Gray makes multiple worlds in just this one book with more to come in the next installments! Each one is stacked with imagery and its own back story, its own problems and its own advantages. To have created all those scenarios just amazes me. Can’t go on because I don’t want to ruin it!

In conclusion READ THIS BOOK hello it’s great if you couldn’t tell from this review! Happy Monday and happy reading!

 

 

 

 

The Glittering Court

Richelle Mead’s The Glittering Court tells the story of a high society girl whose family has fallen into less-than-fortunate circumstances that may force her into a marriage she does not like. Desperate to change her fate, heroine Adelaide illegally takes her servant’s place as a member of the Glittering Court. She was enticed by the stories of the Adoria (very similar to America and presumably meant that way) and risks everything to stow away with the group. She undergoes training and then a treacherous journey to the other continent where she will be married to whichever high society man pays the highest price. Will Adelaide be happy with her decision when she discovers her attraction to the Glittering Court proprietor’s son Cedric? Maybe this change won’t bring about the freedom she thought it would…

I know Richelle Mead became famous for Vampire Academy right when I was in the terrible middle school stage of vampire obsession, but for some reason that one never spoke to me. When I saw this new novel of hers, it seemed more along the lines of something I’d like… An independent girl looking for freedom from a terribly backwards society can’t be bad right?

Anyway, I ultimately downloaded this book because of the comparisons it had been getting to Kiera Cass’s The Selection, but DONT FALL FOR IT. This is nothing like The Selection. The romance is predictable and slow AND the book stalls after the first few chapters, continuing to drag on and on even when I thought it was about to end. I couldn’t believe the length of it! I kept reading because after I started it I felt like I had a commitment to it, but I cannot say I feel good about sticking it out.

The other girls of the Glittering Court are pretentious and vain. Nothing else to them. It’s hard to read about the colors of dresses for as long as this book describes them. All these girls seem to care about is their dress color. Adelaide’s roommates and friends become predictable to the point that you know what they’ll say next. Shouldn’t it take me longer than 30 pages to feel that way? After the big testing for their placement drags on, they don’t even leave immediately for Adoria because retests are an option…. Seriously? If you do read this, it will be all too obvious why these were included.

Honestly, Adelaide’s relationship with Cedric was way too one note. For someone who was introduced with mysterious intrigue and proverbial fog around him, he was only ever polite and honest. There is definitely something to be said for that, but even his big secret reveal was unexceptional! (Won’t say more because I don’t want to ruin it) after arriving in Adoria, Adelaide does catch the eye of a governor’s son who I actually thought would be a more intense love interest and a better foil to her personality.

THEN the main problem of the book is solved BUT THERE’S STILL MORE BOOK TO GO. If you could believe it, let me know because I was practically dead. The resolution had been anticlimactic enough.

Okay so maybe people younger than me would like this. A younger me honestly might have. But this book is so flawed and mindlessly put together with shallow characters and a meandering plot line that I wouldn’t be able to recommend this to anyone I know. Sorry not sorry?

The Crown’s Game

This got a little bit of hype on Twitter where I noticed it and I was intrigued enough by the cover and the setting to buy the book. It was a wild ride of emotions from beginning to end!

Set in Russia while the Tsar is still ruling, this book is about two sorcerors and the competition they must endure to become THE enchater of all Russia, right hand to the Tsar himself. Vika and Nikolai have lived their lives in training for this role, but no one has told them exactly what the Game will entail. As their paths cross and secrets are uncovered, the rules remain the same: only one can come out alive.

One thing I found super cool about this book is that it contains bits of actual Russian history. Evelyn Skye (author) is apparently an avid lover of all things Russian and that is why she could not resist setting her novel in the country. The places are all real and described from her own memory of her multiple trips to the area and some historical events are included as well! As someone who did not know that coming in, it was definitely a nice surprise when I read the note at the end. It also explained the beautiful imagery and detail she went into, because everything is described with the utmost care! Seriously the imagery is perfect and can really make you feel like you are there with the characters. In this aspect, it is SO well written. 

Vika is a bombastic heroine who is contrasted by the reserved Nikolai. Where Vika is unconcerned about others’ opinions, Nikolai can be a little vain. As the story does switch narrators, the two can be a bit one-note but balance each other out well and make for a very honest and cohesive whole (IMO). They take their turns in the game (which will make more sense when you read) and become more intertwined throughout the story, their beautiful ideas merging together to make something bigger than either of them imagined. Just wait till you see (read?) it! 

While the beauty and ingenuity of this book was really its selling point for me, it is not without its mystery and action! Without giving anything away, there is one character you will NOT see coming when he/she enters the story and the lovable crown prince conducts investigations of his own to find out what his father has been hiding from him all these years. 

You’ll definitely be on the edge of your seat with this one and in the end you’ll have no idea who to ship! (For me, this one was not so much about the romance—– which goes to show how good the rest of the plot is). I’ll be recommending The Crown’s Game by Evelyn Skye to anyone who talks to me about books for a while!!! 

A Court of Mist and Fury

Can I get a 🙌🏻 from everyone reading this because RHYSAND??? *swoons* I’ll admit I liked him from the second he showed up in A Court of Thorns and Roses and was afraid to get too attached because I thought he’d be, as he himself says, cast as the villain of the story. BUT we all second guessed that (and knew for sure a sequel would come) when……

Feyre made a deal that she would give one week every month to Rhysand and the Night Court to save her own life during Amarantha’s trials. She barely made it out alive, but she’s still not sure she made it out with her soul in tact. Will she ever forget the eyes of the ones she sacrificed for her own happy ending? Will her Night Court visits feel like a prison or an escape? With an even greater danger than Amarantha’s court Under the Mountain looming, Feyre needs to mend her self quickly or risk countless lives.

It’s not often that I think a sequel lives up to the first book in the series (Red Queen/Glass Sword is the first time ever), but ACoMaF may actually be the one I liked better of the two! There are some slow points but every moment is beautiful as we meet new characters and discover more about the Night Court that guarded its secrets so heavily in book one. We also see a bit of Summer and meet their High Lord, who is notably as lovable as a puppy. As probably the most complex character in the series, it was obvious to me that Rhysand would at least be a favorite of many readers no matter the way he turned out but I am NOT UPSET. *angels singing* I don’t want to give anything away but his story is so compelling and love him or hate him for it but he does what he believes is right. How can you not respect that?? 

Rhysand’s whole court is a motley crew that never expected to come to power but it only makes them more relatable. There are turns in the story here that I’m pretty sure you’ll see coming as you read but also some that I didn’t even predict! Like book 1, the final chapters are a race to the finish during which is virtually impossible to put down. 

Since I addressed it last time, I’ll say it….. This book DEFINITELY kicked up the sexy aspect. Feyre is not afraid to tell readers her entire train of thought and Maas does not shy away from the action be it gory or love-y. (HellOOO Hot Under the Covers book shimmy!) Just throwing that out there for anyone who shies away from that type of thing.

As a sequel to A Court of Thorns and Roses, Sarah J Maas’s A Court of Mist and Fury definitely functions perfectly and IMO outdoes its predecessor in many ways (and I just biased because I love Rhys???) *sighs* have fun staying up all night with the beautiful 500 page emotional ride that is this second installment!!!! ✌🏻️👋🏻

A Court of Thorns and Roses

I just finished A Court of Thorns and Roses by Sarah J Maas and I’m left wondering why I didn’t read it sooner! In reality, I know I waited on this book because I have always loved Disney’s Beauty and the Beast and was not ready for this new take in case it ruined the story that I loved so well. On the other hand, I love Maas’s Throne of Glass series and the intrigue of whether my enjoyment of her writing would hold true won out. I do NOT regret taking the chance!

It’s pretty safe to say we all know of Disney’s Beauty and the Beast, which obviously has some magic going on with the whole turning people into talking household objects and whatnot. Did anybody ever wonder where that magic went or why only certain people possessed it? I sure did, and Sarah J Maas takes on that question as part of the story line in A Court of Thorns and Roses. Enter the fae, immortal beings possessing copious amounts of magic who once ruled over and enslaved us humans before they revolted. Now there is a wall – a magical, invisible wall – separating the two species into northern and southern parts of the continent. Feyre has never wished to encounter a fae, and if she did she never expected to be the killer. Nevertheless, a series of events she never thought possible ends in Feyre being whisked away to the land of the fae under the care of a mysterious shape-shifting faerie. Yet, all is not as it seems as Feyre uncovers secrets of a power even greater than her own captor’s weakening the magic of every faerie and finds desires within herself that are more than unexpected. When it comes down to it, Feyre’s weak human heart could be what saves the fae.

If you’re going to read this book (and you SHOULD) it’s time to settle in for a lot of rising action. It takes Feyre some time to open her eyes to everything that’s happening around her and even longer to decide she wants to do something about it, but take it from me that the moments of high action and climaxes are more than worth it. Feyre is a deep and interesting character, far more intricate that her counterpart in the Disney story, but enough aspects of the original remained that even my fanatical love of Beauty and the Beast was satiated. Feyre’s need to care for her family mirrors Belle’s love of her own, and while she is anything but an avid reader, the ability to read does play a huge part in Feyre’s story (and that’s all I’m going to say about that). We’re led to believe in the beginning that Feyre may like hunting, but learn later that she tends more towards Belle’s love of everything alive. These are just a few of the parallels I spotted in the character that don’t reveal anything about the plot! (and don’t even get me started on the Beast’s fae counterpart or his right-hand man – ugh! they’re so perfect for this story)

One common description that kept me from reading this book when it first came out is that it’s a “sexy re-telling.” While passion and maybe something darker always has its place in this story, I wasn’t ready to mar my idolization of Belle as a character by reading too much in the sexy line of things. REST ASSURED that while there are heated moments and some choice images, there is a certain line of privacy this book keeps that not all novels manage to draw. I can’t get enough of the way Feyre’s love grows throughout the book and I was not shocked by any of the sexy bits, which I can easily be. The faeries that make up the main cast are, of course, ethereally beautiful. This makes for an interesting game in the last 150 or so pages as the whole “Court” part of the title comes into play. Let’s just say that it’s a wild ride and you won’t know whether to love or hate the “bad guy” by the end – which you’ll never see coming.

As a needless conclusion, I loved everything about this book from start to finish. Nothing feels out of place or forced, and Sarah J. Maas’s writing goes from elegant to snarky to mournful at the turn of a hat and still in all the right places. If you love Aelin from Throne of Glass, you will not get enough of Feyre and her cohorts. Now go! Read! Book 2, A Court of Mist and Fury, is already out!