Book Reviews · Books

Book Review: A Darker Shade of Magic by V.E. Schwab

adarkershadeofmagicKell is one of the last Antari—magicians with a rare, coveted ability to travel between parallel Londons; Red, Grey, White, and, once upon a time, Black.
Kell was raised in Arnes—Red London—and officially serves the Maresh Empire as an ambassador, traveling between the frequent bloody regime changes in White London and the court of George III in the dullest of Londons, the one without any magic left to see.
Unofficially, Kell is a smuggler, servicing people willing to pay for even the smallest glimpses of a world they’ll never see. It’s a defiant hobby with dangerous consequences, which Kell is now seeing firsthand.
After an exchange goes awry, Kell escapes to Grey London and runs into Delilah Bard, a cut-purse with lofty aspirations. She first robs him, then saves him from a deadly enemy, and finally forces Kell to spirit her to another world for a proper adventure.
Now perilous magic is afoot, and treachery lurks at every turn. To save all of the worlds, they’ll first need to stay alive.

Released: 27th February 2015

The start of my ‘read everything by V.E. Schwab in 2019’ resolution. I know readers that love this trilogy and some that didn’t enjoy it much so I went in to this with an open mind and just tried to enjoy it for what it is. It took me a while to really get into the world as there are quite a lot of points to the world to explain but once I had that sorted I was free to enjoy the ride, and I did! I really seemed to bond with Kell as the main character and I cared about what happened to him, and eventually Lila as well although she did take a bit longer for me to really like her character. The villains in this book were excellently evil and seeing the difference between the Londons was fascinating. It felt like a nice mix of Adult and YA, the story is definitely a dark one and not suitable for younger readers.

The magic seems like a bit of a weird one, one that the reader isn’t really sure of the limits of which can lead to some nice surprises. I’m interested to see where the series leads and will be completing it at some point this year. I’m really glad that I enjoyed it!

GOODREADSAMAZON

My Rating: 4.5/5 Stars

this book was purchased by myself
Books · Monthly wrap ups

February Wrap Up

Books I read and finished in February

The first thing I finished reading was the Orange collection volume one manga by Ichigo Takano, there are only 2 parts of this manga collection so I will write-up my review once I have read volume 2 but I really loved the first volume. Then I read an eARC of In The Night Wood by Dale Bailey which I received via Netgalley, an enjoyable gothic mystery thriller. I then decided to jump back in to the world of Saga as I had previously only read up to volume 6 of the graphic novel so I read volume 7 and it felt good to be reading it again. I have volumes 8 & 9 ready to read so I will hopefully get to them soon.

Circle of Shadows by Evelyn Skye was Fairyloot’s January book which I read and thoroughly enjoyed in February.  Then I finally finished A Darker Shade of Magic by V.E. Schwab, I took my time reading this but I really enjoyed it and plan on finishing the series this year. The last book I finished right at the end of the month was Queen of Shadows by Sarah J. Maas, part of the Throne of Glass series. I’m still very much loving reading this series and can’t believe I only have 3 (rather large) books left to go, I will be sad to finish it but plan on picking up Sarah J. Maas’ other series A Court of Thorns and Roses afterwards.

March TBR

I never stick to a rigid monthly TBR but I have already started reading A Curse So  Dark and Lonely by Brigid Kemmerer and Frankenstein by Junji Ito so I will finish those. I have a planned buddy read of After Dark by Haruki Murakami with the lovely Keira which I’m really excited about. The other book I would at least like to start in March is The Priory of the Orange Tree by Samantha Shannon which is one of my most anticipated reads of 2019, but as it is over 800 pages I don’t expect to finish it in March but you never know. What are you planning to read in March?

Favourite K-Pop releases in February

Animal Crossing for Nintendo Switch update: STILL NO NEWS

Book Reviews · Books

Book Review: Circle of Shadows by Evelyn Skye

circleofshadowsSora can move as silently as a ghost and hurl throwing stars with lethal accuracy. Her gemina, Daemon, can win any physical fight blindfolded and with an arm tied around his back. They are apprentice warriors of the Society of Taigas—marked by the gods to be trained in magic and the fighting arts to protect the kingdom of Kichona.
As their graduation approaches, Sora and Daemon look forward to proving themselves worthy of belonging in the elite group—but in a kingdom free of violence since the Blood Rift Rebellion many years ago, it’s been difficult to make their mark.
So when Sora and Daemon encounter a strange camp of mysterious soldiers while on a standard scouting mission, they decide the only thing to do to help their kingdom is to infiltrate the group. Taking this risk will change Sora’s life forever—and lead her on a mission of deception that may fool everyone she’s ever loved.

Released: 22nd January 2019

I enjoyed this book way more than I thought I would and it helped to fill the void left by Shadow of the Fox. Very easy to read with a good writing flow, although some of the big plot twists for me were pretty obvious I still thoroughly enjoyed seeing how they panned out. The magic system in this book wasn’t anything I had seen before but some have compared it to Avatar as it is quite elemental based. It was interesting to see the characters learning and honing their abilities to help them in saving their kingdom, from invisibility to creating hurricanes and controlling bugs! The 4 main characters were very different and likable and I cared what happened to them. I was expecting a typical predictable happy ending for this but it definitely wasn’t! I will certainly be picking up the sequel for this whenever it releases. I had a lot of fun reading this and would highly recommend to fantasy fans.

GOODREADSAMAZON

My Rating: 4.25/5 Stars

I RECEIVED THIS BOOK IN JANUARY’S FAIRYLOOT BOX
Book Reviews · Books

Book Review: Return to Dyatlov Pass by J. H. Moncrieff

dyatlovpass‘In 1959, nine Russian students set off on a skiing expedition in the Ural Mountains. Their mutilated bodies were discovered weeks later. Their bizarre and unexplained deaths are one of the most enduring true mysteries of our time.
Nearly sixty years later, podcast host Nat McPherson ventures into the same mountains with her team, determined to finally solve the mystery of the Dyatlov Pass incident. Her plans are thwarted on the first night, when two trackers from her group are brutally slaughtered.
The team’s guide, a superstitious man from a neighboring village, blames the killings on yetis, but no one believes him. As members of Nat’s team die one by one, she must figure out if there’s a murderer in their midst—or something even worse—before history repeats itself and her group becomes another casualty of the infamous Dead Mountain.’

A fictional investigation in to a real life tragedy, the Dyatlov Pass incident was never fully explained, as the deaths of the victims were too bizarre for reason. The book has a fairly slow start as we get to know the 8 people chosen for the challenge of revisiting the exact place that the incident took place to try and find answers for a popular online podcast. The middle section of this story was deffinitly the best part in my opinion, the atmosphere was written extremely well and seriously gave me the creeps. The yetis can’t be real, right? so who out of their group is killing them off one by one and recreating the Dyatlov victims deaths? There are a lot of shocking moments but the ending fell a bit short for me, although overall a very gripping read.

GOODREADSAMAZON

My Rating: 3.5/5 Stars

this ebook was purchased by myself

 

Book Reviews · Books

Book Review: The Wicked King by Holly Black

thewickedking‘Jude has bound the wicked king, Cardan, to her, and made herself the power behind the throne. Navigating the constantly shifting political alliances of Faerie would be difficult enough if Cardan were biddable. But he does everything in his power to humiliate and undermine her, even as his fascination with her remains undiminished.
When it becomes all too clear that someone close to Jude means to betray her, threatening her life and the lives of everyone she loves, Jude must uncover the traitor and fight her own complicated feelings for Cardan to maintain control as a mortal in a faerie world.’

The Wicked King is the sequel to The Cruel Prince so there will be spoilers for the first book in this review. Jude and Carden are now in power, seeing as he is bound to her command for a year (and a day), this doesn’t stop Carden from trying to work ways around this bargain and he still manages to find his own sick ways of belittling, with some help of old faithful Locke. Traitors are at play and Jude is left feeling like she can trust no one but herself. My favourite parts of this book were seeing the relationship between Jude and Carden evolve, and yes I do ship that toxic relationship. Cardens brother, after massacring most of the family is being held captive and may or may not be conspiring against the crown with Orlagh, queen of the sea. We see Jude try whatever is in her power to keep the ones she loves safe while protecting the kingdom, but of course nothing ever goes to plan in Faerie. The book has a huge cliff hanger ending that left me still confused at what Cardens true feelings and intentions are, and now we wait for book 3.

GOODREADSAMAZON

My Rating: 4.5/5 Stars

this book was purchased by myself
Book Reviews · Books

Book Review: In The Night Wood by Dale Bailey

inthenightwood

‘Charles Hayden has been fascinated by a strange Victorian fairy tale, In the Night Wood, since he was a child. When his wife, Erin – a descendant of the author – inherits her ancestor’s house, the couple decide to make it their home. Still mourning the recent death of their daughter, they leave America behind, seeking a new beginning in the English countryside. But Hollow House, filled with secrets and surrounded by an ancient oak forest, is a place where the past seems very much alive.’

Released: 7th February 2019

A dark fairy tale within a dark fairy tale, this book is a very atmospheric gothic thriller based in Yorkshire. Charles and Erin move in to Hollow House which is a huge mansion which has previously been burnt down by its previous owner and rebuilt. A tall wall has been built around the whole house, to keep the forest out? but why. Charles is obsessed with finding out more about the previous owner who was said to have been driven mad by the forest and committed suicide. When they move in, there are already staff working there to maintain the house, some more suspicious than others. A young girl has gone missing from the village that looks remarkably like their deceased daughter Lissa, both Charles and Erin see visions of a young girl and a dark horned figure in and around the forest, are they just visions?

This book kept me guessing to the very end about what was actually real, the truth, and who was responsible for the missing girls. It shows how people handle grief differently, some distract themselves and obsess over something else, others are completely consumed by the grief with no way out. Murder, adultery, betrayal, guilt. The only criticisms I have from reading this book is that it took me a while to get used to the writing style and I sometimes found myself lost in it and having to reread some parts. Overall I enjoyed this thriller and was satisfied with how it ended.

GOODREADSAMAZON

My Rating: 3.5/5 Stars

eARC provided via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review

 

Book Reviews · Books

Book Review: Nevermoor by Jessica Townsend

nevermoor‘Morrigan Crow is cursed. Having been born on Eventide, the unluckiest day for any child to be born, she’s blamed for all local misfortunes, from hailstorms to heart attacks–and, worst of all, the curse means that Morrigan is doomed to die at midnight on her eleventh birthday.
But as Morrigan awaits her fate, a strange and remarkable man named Jupiter North appears. Chased by black-smoke hounds and shadowy hunters on horseback, he whisks her away into the safety of a secret, magical city called Nevermoor.’

The best way I can describe this book is being Harry Potter but not being Harry Potter. What a compliment though? It did give me similar feels while reading it, I love me some good British humor. All of the characters are unique and excellent, there’s a huge talking cat and a vampire dwarf for goodness sake.

We follow Morrigan as she is whisked away by a tall ginger man called Jupiter North the same night she was supposed to die. She finds her way around this new magical world, Nevermoor, and has to pass a series of ‘trials’ to try and become a part of the Wundrous Society. If she fails, she faces exportation back to the normal world and certain death, not much pressure then. The writing is well paced and easy to read, the friendships are marvelous and the story overall is great. There really isn’t much else to say about it, it’s a great start to a new series, go read it! There are currently 2 books out and the 3rd should be out later this year. Also the hardcover versions of these books are gorgeous.

GOODREADSAMAZON

My Rating: 4.75/5 Stars

THIS BOOK WAS PURCHASED BY MYSELF