Book Review

Book Review | THE HAZEL WOOD, by Melissa Albert

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The Hazel Woodby Melissa Albert

Publish Date: January 30, 2018
Published by: Flatiron Books
Pages: 368
Genre: YA Fantasy
My Rating: ★★★★★ (4.5 out of 5 stars)

**I received this as an ARC from the publisher as a bookseller for barnes & Noble in return for an honest review.**


Synopsis:

Seventeen-year-old Alice and her mother have spent most of Alice’s life on the road, always a step ahead of the uncanny bad luck biting at their heels. But when Alice’s grandmother, the reclusive author of a cult-classic book of pitch-dark fairy tales, dies alone on her estate, the Hazel Wood, Alice learns how bad her luck can really get: her mother is stolen away―by a figure who claims to come from the Hinterland, the cruel supernatural world where her grandmother’s stories are set. Alice’s only lead is the message her mother left behind: “Stay away from the Hazel Wood.”

Alice has long steered clear of her grandmother’s cultish fans. But now she has no choice but to ally with classmate Ellery Finch, a Hinterland superfan who may have his own reasons for wanting to help her. To retrieve her mother, Alice must venture first to the Hazel Wood, then into the world where her grandmother’s tales began―and where she might find out how her own story went so wrong.


My Review:

The Hazel Wood is the wish of every fantasy lover out there, who dreams of finding a magical door to another world that is home to their favorite stories. Or is it? This book takes the idea of doors-between-worlds and fairy-tale adventures and turns them upside down on their heads and hands you their bleeding hearts on a corroded silver platter. It’s dark, it’s twisted, it gives you chills, but also keeps you completely entranced for the entire ride. Continue reading “Book Review | THE HAZEL WOOD, by Melissa Albert”

Book Review

Book Review | REIGN OF THE FALLEN, by Sarah Glenn Marsh

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Reign of the Fallenby Sarah Glenn Marsh

Publish Date: January 23, 2018
Published by: Razorbill
Pages: 384
Genre: YA Fantasy
My Rating: ★★☆☆☆ (2 out of 5 stars)

**I received this as an ARC from the publisher as a Bookseller for Barnes & Noble in return for an honest review.**


Synopsis:

Odessa is one of Karthia’s master necromancers, catering to the kingdom’s ruling Dead. Whenever a noble dies, it’s Odessa’s job to raise them by retrieving their souls from a dreamy and dangerous shadow world called the Deadlands. But there is a cost to being raised–the Dead must remain shrouded, or risk transforming into zombie-like monsters known as Shades. If even a hint of flesh is exposed, the grotesque transformation will begin.

A dramatic uptick in Shade attacks raises suspicions and fears among Odessa’s necromancer community. Soon a crushing loss of one of their own reveals a disturbing conspiracy: someone is intentionally creating Shades by tearing shrouds from the Dead–and training them to attack. Odessa is faced with a terrifying question: What if her necromancer’s magic is the weapon that brings Karthia to its knees?


My Review:

When I first came across this book I was extremely stoked and excited to read it. It quickly became one of my highly anticipated reads for 2018, and when I managed to get me hands on an ARC of it, I was ecstatic. But sadly, it just didn’t work for me in the long-run. Continue reading “Book Review | REIGN OF THE FALLEN, by Sarah Glenn Marsh”

Book Review

Book Review | GUNSLINGER GIRL, by Lyndsay Ely

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Gunslinger Girlby Lyndsay Ely

Publish Date: January 2, 2018
Published by: jimmy patterson (imprint of Little, Brown and Company)
Pages: 432
Genre: YA Fiction/Dystopian
My Rating: ★★★★★ (5 out of 5 stars)

**I received this as an ARC from the publisher at BookCon2017 in return for an honest review.**


Synopsis:

Seventeen-year-old Serendipity “Pity” Jones inherited two things from her mother: a pair of six shooters and perfect aim. She’s been offered a life of fame and fortune in Cessation, a glittering city where lawlessness is a way of life. But the price she pays for her freedom may be too great….
In this extraordinary debut from Lyndsay Ely, the West is once again wild after a Second Civil War fractures the U.S. into a broken, dangerous land. Pity’s struggle against the dark and twisted underbelly of a corrupt city will haunt you long after the final bullet is shot.


My Review:

This book stole my heart. I really did not expect to enjoy it as much as I did. Continue reading “Book Review | GUNSLINGER GIRL, by Lyndsay Ely”

Book Review

Book Review | INVICTUS, by Ryan Graudin

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Invictusby Ryan Graudin

Publish Date: September 26, 2017
Published by: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers
Pages: 464
Genre: YA Sci-Fi
My Rating: ★★★☆☆ (2.5 out of 5 stars)

**I received this as an ARC from the publisher at BookCon2017 in return for an honest review.**


Synopsis:

Time flies when you’re plundering history.

Farway Gaius McCarthy was born outside of time. The son of a time-traveling Recorder from 2354 AD and a gladiator living in Rome in 95 AD, Far’s birth defies the laws of nature. Exploring history himself is all he’s ever wanted, and after failing his final time-traveling exam, Far takes a position commanding a ship with a crew of his friends as part of a black market operation to steal valuables from the past. 

But during a heist on the sinking Titanic, Far meets a mysterious girl who always seems to be one step ahead of him. Armed with knowledge that will bring Far’s very existence into question, she will lead Far and his team on a race through time to discover a frightening truth: History is not as steady as it seems.


My Review:

This book was such a highly anticipated read for me that I was determined to get it when I went to BookCon. Thieves and time travel? Yes please! I was so so excited for it – only to find that I kind of didn’t care for it at all. Continue reading “Book Review | INVICTUS, by Ryan Graudin”

Book Review

Book Review | ALL THE CROOKED SAINTS, by Maggie Stiefvater

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All the Crooked Saintsby Maggie Stiefvater

Publish Date: October 10, 2017
Published by: Scholastic Press
Pages: 320
Genre: YA Magical Realism/Historical Fiction
My Rating: ★★★★☆ (4 out of 5 stars)

**I received this as an ARC from the publisher at BookCon2017 in return for an honest review.**


Synopsis:

Here is a thing everyone wants: a miracle.
Here is a thing everyone fears: what it takes to get one.

Any visitor to Bicho Raro, Colorado is likely to find a landscape of dark saints, forbidden love, scientific dreams, miracle-mad owls, estranged affections, one or two orphans, and a sky full of watchful desert stars.

At the heart of this place you will find the Soria family, who all have the ability to perform unusual miracles. And at the heart of this family are three cousins longing to change its future: Beatriz, the girl without feelings, who wants only to be free to examine her thoughts; Daniel, the Saint of Bicho Raro, who performs miracles for everyone but himself; and Joaquin, who spends his nights running a renegade radio station under the name Diablo Diablo.

They are all looking for a miracle. But the miracles of Bicho Raro are never quite what you expect.


My Review:

I love Maggie Stiefvater (okay so I’ve only read The Raven Cycle but I think that’s enough to make anyone fall in love with her writing, right?), so I was so ready to read this book Continue reading “Book Review | ALL THE CROOKED SAINTS, by Maggie Stiefvater”

Book Review

Book Review | AN ENCHANTMENT OF RAVENS by Margaret Rogerson

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An Enchantment of Ravensby Margaret Rogerson

Publish Date: September 26, 2017
Published by: Margaret K. McElderry Books
Pages: 300
Genre: YA Fantasy
My Rating: ★★★☆☆ (3 out of 5 stars)

**I received this as an ARC from the publisher at BookCon2017 in return for an honest review.**

Synopsis:

Isobel is a prodigy portrait artist with a dangerous set of clients: the sinister fair folk, immortal creatures who cannot bake bread, weave cloth, or put a pen to paper without crumbling to dust. They crave human Craft with a terrible thirst, and Isobel’s paintings are highly prized among them. But when she receives her first royal patron—Rook, the autumn prince—she makes a terrible mistake. She paints mortal sorrow in his eyes – a weakness that could cost him his life.

Furious and devastated, Rook spirits her away to the autumnlands to stand trial for her crime. Waylaid by the Wild Hunt’s ghostly hounds, the tainted influence of the Alder King, and hideous monsters risen from barrow mounds, Isobel and Rook depend on one another for survival. Their alliance blossoms into trust, then love, violating the fair folks’ ruthless Good Law. There’s only one way to save both their lives, Isobel must drink from the Green Well, whose water will transform her into a fair one—at the cost of her Craft, for immortality is as stagnant as it is timeless.

Isobel has a choice: she can sacrifice her art for a future, or arm herself with paint and canvas against the ancient power of the fairy courts. Because secretly, her Craft represents a threat the fair folk have never faced in all the millennia of their unchanging lives: for the first time, her portraits have the power to make them feel.


My Review:

To be honest, I wasn’t even mildly interested in this book when I first came across it. A painter who suddenly finds herself among fairies? Wait, didn’t I already read that? (A Court of Thorns and Roses). Well, after seeing so much hype about it (and having the ARC was a nice little incentive), I decided to give it a go. It is certainly different from ACOTAR, with a much different feel to it, and definitely feels unique when it comes to books about the fair folk.  Continue reading “Book Review | AN ENCHANTMENT OF RAVENS by Margaret Rogerson”