Monday, May 28, 2018

ARC Review: Cinderella's inferno By F.M. Boughan

Cinderella's Inferno by F.M. Boughan
Publisher: Month9Books
Release Date: May 29th, 2018
Format: Egalley, 324 pages
Source: Publisher*
My Rating: 
★ 1/2

Goodreads ★ Amazon ★ B&N ★ TBD


Purity cannot abide the darkness.

It’s been two years since Ellison defeated her stepsisters and sent her evil stepmother back into the Abyss.

Though she’s learning to control her dark magic and has spent time traveling with Prince William and bringing peace to the kingdom, one fact remains. She is a necromancer and he is a paladin of light. And so, the king refuses to give his blessing for them to marry.

To appease his father, William has begun to avoid her. But when even her younger brother Edward grows distant, Ellison learns her mother’s spirit has been visiting Edward in secret, threatening to overwhelm him with her own loneliness and longing. When Ellison accidentally touches her mother’s spirit, her tainted touch condemns her mother’s spirit to eternal damnation.

Ellison resolves to descend into hell to save her mother’s soul and bring her physical body back to the world of the living. William hopes this good deed will bring Ellison into favor and finally allow them to be wed.

But the journey through hell is fraught with peril. Temptations abound and the demons Ellison sent back to the Abyss are thirsty for revenge.

Evil cannot be defeated without sacrifice—but when that sacrifice means choosing between the ones Ellison loves and her very own life, how far is she willing to go to make her family whole again?
 
Cinderella's Inferno is the sequel to F.M. Boughan's Cinderella, Necromancer which I reviewed last year. I liked the first book, but I have to admit this sequel was a miss for me. I think part of it was because I felt like the first book was a pretty succinct book that I didn't need more of Ellison's story. This second novel is more of retelling of Dante's Inferno, and less a retelling of a fairytale, so I think that might also be why it just didn't sit well with me.

I didn't really care for the writing style in this book, which I think it more a personal opinion that a constructive criticism on the book. This book definitely has the right tone and lexicon to make it sound like something written in the time period of this book (15th Century Germany). I think it was great that Boughan made it so authentic sounding, but personally I just didn't care of it. It's totally a personal opinion here, so I think if you like to read books more on the classic side or if you want a book that uses an accurate writing style for the time period it's set in, this one does it really well. 

I struggled a lot with this book, and partly I think it's because it took way too long to get to the meat of the story. The beginning is very slow paced, and it felt like it was introducing a lot of unnecessary conflict to the plot. I'm not sure what changed between the first book and this one, but I also couldn't really get behind Ellison in this one. I'm not sure what it was, but I found myself not really caring about her journey. I just couldn't get behind her motivations to go tear open a portal into hell. It felt really selfish of her, and that doesn't feel like the Ellison I read about in the first book.

Don't get me wrong, there were also things I liked about this book. Once we get to the main plot of the story of Ellison and her team journeying through hell, that's when things got interesting to me. This is where the inspiration from Dante's Inferno comes in, and although I have never cared to read that, I do love a good quest story. I do have some questions about this section though, because there are elements of the Greek idea of the underworld in this one, which I loved, but I don't think it made sense in the context of this story. I think my favorite part in the story was when they meet the Spirit that Ellison has summoned and they start to become another member of the quest. I think Ellison's journey through hell and having to go through multiple trials was the most interesting thing about this novel. 

Personally I just didn't totally love this one, but I think if you really liked the first book you will enjoy this one. Also if you love books where the hero has to travel through hell to achieve a goal this one might also be right up your alley. 


*I received a free egalley copy of this book in exchange for my honest review

Happy Reads Everyone!
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Friday, May 25, 2018

Wyrd and Wonder: Is The Magicians (TV Show) Even Any Good?


I talked earlier this month about fantasy tv shows I am loving, but I want to bring it back to The Magicians. I gave up on the books, Quentin was so damn insufferable and I was really pissed about Julia's arc, but I still wanted to try the show. 

I think I like the show much better. I don't think Quentin is has insufferable, granted he is still a problematic and flawed character but the actor who plays him just makes me want to like him. I also like that they hired a POC to play Penny! I love Penny in the show. He's bitter and closed off, and he calls Q on all his shit. I really like how his arc is in the show, and I also love his weird relationship with Kady. Kady is character that doesn't exist in the books, but I really like her as an addition to this story. Her rocky friendship with Julia is one I find really interesting. The two of them kind of need each to ground each other. 

I think my favorite part about the book is Eliot. I think the actor who plays him in the show is perfect, and he really gets who Eliot is at his core. In the book Eliot seems like he is this really vapid character with not that much depth, but I think in the show they flesh out his character a little better. He seems more nuanced and more of a three-dimensional character that wants to not care about anything but he really does deep down. 

So the question is, is this show even good? I don't know, I'm asking you!! I am finding myself really enjoying it. I blasted through the first two seasons and I really want to start watching the third season, but it's not on Netflix yet. 

What do you think?

Happy Reads Everyone!
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Thursday, May 24, 2018

Wyrd and Wonder: Review of Labyrinth Lost (Brooklyn Brujas #1) By Zoraida Córdova

Labyrinth Lost (Brooklyn Brujas #1) by Zoraida Córdova
Publisher: Sourcebook Fire
Release Date: September 6, 2016
Format: ebook
Source: Kindle
My Rating: 


Goodreads ★ Amazon ★ B&N ★ TBD


Nothing says Happy Birthday like summoning the spirits of your dead relatives.

Alex is a bruja, the most powerful witch in a generation...and she hates magic. At her Deathday celebration, Alex performs a spell to rid herself of her power. But it backfires. Her whole family vanishes into thin air, leaving her alone with Nova, a brujo boy she can't trust. A boy whose intentions are as dark as the strange marks on his skin.

The only way to get her family back is to travel with Nova to Los Lagos, a land in-between, as dark as Limbo and as strange as Wonderland.
I've had this book on my TBR list for a really long time, and since it's Wyrd and Wonder I finally had the opportunity to force myself to read it. I had heard some great things about this book, but I had also heard some bad things so I went into this book wanting to make my own opinion about it. I ended up on the really positive side, as I really enjoyed this story the entire time I was reading it.

Based on some of the negative reviews I read, it seems like some readers liked the world building and the magical system, but Alex was the problem. I think that is a fair assessment, but for me I really liked reading from Alex's perspective. Alex seems like a really closed off character that just wanted everyone to leave her alone. I think I can relate to that feeling a lot. I think she is a little naive, but I think she learns and grows in the story when her selfish actions force her to come into her own and recognize her own strength.

I loved the world building in this novel. The other realm of Los Lagos was so vivid in the writing that I felt like I could see it so clearly. It does have a very Wonderland-esque quality to it, but that just made me love it more. I also thought the magical system and the religion of the Brujas was done really well. In this story that background felt so authentic and it just made sense to me. I like that the trope of "magic has a price" is in this book too, because I think it just makes magic being a real thing more believable.

I think what I like the most about this novel is that at it's core it's a Quest Story. Our hero Alex is a naive teen that thinks she know what she wants, and when it all goes horribly wrong she has to go on her quest in Los Lagos to right all the wrongs she does. Like every good Hero's journey she has companions that help her along the way too. I was suspicious of Nova the whole time, but Rishi! I loved her! I haven't read a lot of books with F/F pairings, so I was glad to read one with more representation. I also think this story is testament of being careful for what you wish for, because sometimes what we want is not actually what we need. I love stories like that.

This was a book that I just couldn't wait to have time to sit down and read, which I have found be a struggle for me lately. I liked this one a lot, and I definitely will be seeking out the next book in the series.

Have you read any of the Brooklyn Brujas novels? What do you think?

Happy Reads Everyone!
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Wednesday, May 23, 2018

Wyrd And Wonder: Audiobook Review of The Cruel Prince By Holly Black

The Cruel Prince By Holly Black
Publisher: Hachette Audio
Release Date: January 2, 2018
Format: Audiobook narrated by Caitlin Kelly
Source: Audible
My Rating: 
★ 1/2

Goodreads ★ Amazon ★ B&N ★ TBD

Of course I want to be like them. They’re beautiful as blades forged in some divine fire. They will live forever.

And Cardan is even more beautiful than the rest. I hate him more than all the others. I hate him so much that sometimes when I look at him, I can hardly breathe.


Jude was seven years old when her parents were murdered and she and her two sisters were stolen away to live in the treacherous High Court of Faerie. Ten years later, Jude wants nothing more than to belong there, despite her mortality. But many of the fey despise humans. Especially Prince Cardan, the youngest and wickedest son of the High King.

To win a place at the Court, she must defy him–and face the consequences.

In doing so, she becomes embroiled in palace intrigues and deceptions, discovering her own capacity for bloodshed. But as civil war threatens to drown the Courts of Faerie in violence, Jude will need to risk her life in a dangerous alliance to save her sisters, and Faerie itself.
 
Holly Black is legitimately one of my favorite authors, and I will adore anything she writes. I actually got to meet her a few years ago when The Darkest Part of The Forest came out, which I unfortunately still haven't read. I'm the worse. I knew she was coming out with a new book this year, so I definitely put it on my TBR, but I kept hearing such awesome things about the audiobook of The Cruel Prince. So I used one of my audible credits, and it did not disappoint!

I like to refer to Holly Black as the Queen of Fae. It was her Tithe novel that I read way back in the early aughts that really made me get into reading books set in Faerie. What I like about her books is that she shows the Faerie that is dark and full of tricksters. Faeries are NOT nice. If you make a deal with a Faerie it's probably not going to end up well for you. To the Faeries, humans are just play things that they toss away when they get bored. The world of Faerie in The Cruel Prince lives up to all of these ideas of what the world is and how they treat humans. Our main protagonist Jude has grown up in Faerie her whole life with her sisters, and she knows what it is to be a human in this land. Jude can never go back to the human world as it is now a place she does not understand, but at the same time she will never truly fit in with the Faeries. Her classmates mock her and try to trick her on all occasions, despite that she is the ward of a powerful general. Like a lot of kids that are bullied, Jude suffers in silence because she knows if she tells her "father" it would only make it worse.

Jude is an intriguing character to me, because I'm not completely sure I actually like her, but I found her journey really compelling. It's interesting that I feel this way about her since I think at the end of this book, she doesn't really care if the Folk like her, she just wants power to wield. I do like that she doesn't just want to be married off, but wants to be a knight. She later becomes a spy for someone in The Court, and I think that's where she really starts to come into her own. Jude slowly starts to become the grand schemer and she figures out a way to put all the pieces together to be the person with the upper hand at the very end of the novel. I definitely was not expecting how this one was going to end up. I love when a book can surprise me!

I think this is my first experience listening to Caitlin Kelly narrate an audiobook. I think she did an awesome job with this one. I think some of her male characters sounded a touch similar, but I think they were different enough that it didn't trip me up. All of the other different cadences and different voices she does for the characters in this book were done really well. I felt like I could really feel what Jude was going through. Kelly's narration really hit me during Jude's lowest points, and when she was at her highest. I'm not sure if she is going to narrate the sequel to this novel, but she definitely should. I don't know if I could listen to another narrator telling Jude's story.

I'm not sure what to make of the relationship between Cardan and Jude yet, and I think that's going to be fleshed out more in the sequel. There is definitely a hate-to-love thing going on there, which is one of my favorite tropes so I am own board, but I just need more from it. I will for sure be reading the next book in this series!

Have you read this book, what do you think? Are you a fan of Faerie stories? Which ones?

Happy Reads Everyone!
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Monday, May 21, 2018

Wyrd and Wonder: Audio Dramas perfect for the fantasy reader



You guys think I'm going to stop talking about all the 583948590894 podcasts I listen to?!?

NOPE!

I'm starting to get more into Audio Dramas, which I think makes sense for most people that are readers. So for Wyrd and Wonder, I wanted to specifically find some good podcasts set in fantasy worlds. I already talked about Hello From The Magic Tavern (Which I still highly recommend) but I found three others that I think are perfect for any fantasy lover out there.



I found this one, by literally typing "fantasy" into the itunes store, and here we are. I tried to explain this one to my boyfriend, and he said, "How is this any different than that other one you listen all the time." "Um...this one is more serious, I think, and has less butthole jokes?" So this one is about three teenagers from Pennsylvania (HEY! I live there!) that fall into a new world...somehow when they are sitting in detention. What I like about this one is that it really plays with your stereotypes of fantasy lore. The Elf the teens meet in the first episode has a American Southern accent, which I love! Because a lot of time in fantasy Elves always seem to have a posh British accent. There's another character you meet later in the story has a kind of New England (Ie. Boston) accent. I find that so interesting, because it challenges what we as fantasy lovers think when we think about worlds where magic and elves exist.



Alba Salix is another audio drama I've recently discovered which is about the Royal Physician in a fictional kingdom were there are all sorts of magical creatures. Alba reluctantly takes the help of a fairy and monk-in-training to help her treat all the patients in the kingdom. I like that this one seems to start head on in the action without giving you much time for an introduction. Alba is called a witch a few times in this podcast, but based on how she knows her way around a herb, she seems more like a smart woman ahead of her time. I definitely will continue with this one. 



If you've listened to Ars Paradoxica (I haven't...yet) this is written and performed by one of the writers. In the Far Meridian we are introduced to Peri, an agoraphobic woman whose home is in a different place each day. This is a great magical realism podcast, and I feel like I can really relate to Peri's mental health struggles. I suffer from some anxiety and it feels like lately it is starting to get worse and worse. Peri struggling to have to leave her house to figure out where she is and what is going on was something I could really relate to. I've only listened to the first couple of episodes of this one, but I am definitely intrigued.  

Have you listened to any good fantasy audio dramas? Do you have any recommendations?


Happy Reads Everyone!
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Thursday, May 17, 2018

Wyrd and Wonder: Where are all the Fantasy TV Shows?


Since we are taking all things fantasy this month, I want to talk not just about fantasy books, but also film and tv.

I was looking at Netflix looking for a good fantasy series to add to my queue and I felt like there's just not that much. Was it just me? Or was I being too picky with what fantasy means? When doing a quick "fantasy" shows on Netflix search Supernatural came up a lot, but I never really considered that fantasy. So I started thinking about it differently and put together a list of fantasy tv shows I love.

LEGEND OF THE SEEKER

Legend of the Seeker came out when I was a freshman in college. It was early Hulu days before you had to pay to use the full catalog. Unfortunately, it only lasted two seasons but I wish it lasted more! I ended up reading most of the Sword of Truth series which it's based on, and I think the show was a little better. I think this show would have done better if it came on back in the 90s when Hercules and Xena were popular.

THE MAGICIANS


The Magicians is another show that I think is better than the book. Quentin is the worst in the books and what happens in the second book pissed me off so much that I refuse to read the rest of the series. Q is slightly better in the show, but I have to say I love Penny in the show. The thing that annoyed me still happens in the show, but I'm more interested in how it will be resolved now. I do want to note that if suicide, depression or sexual assault are triggers for you, you might want to pass on this show.

WYNONNA EARP


I tend to like female characters with dark hair and a sarcastic attitude, and that's Wynonna  Earp in a nutshell. I will admit this show feels like female supernatural but I am okay with it. I like that it's slightly rooted in history. I didn't even know Wyatt Earl was a real person! 

THE SHANNARA CHRONICLES


Full disclosure, I never read the books so I think I'm more forgiving with this series. I watched the first season and liked it, but I'm not sure if I'll continue. Not because I didn't like it but because the second season was moved to spike and the network folded so the show doesn't have a home right now. I definitely want to read the books.

 Did/do you watch any of these? Do you have any other  recommendations for other fantasy shows?

Happy Reads Everyone!
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Monday, May 14, 2018

Wyrd and Wonder: Audiobook Review of A Discovery of Witches By Deborah Harkness

A Discovery of Witches by Deborah Harkness
Publisher: Penguin Audiobooks
Release Date: February 8, 2011
Format: Audiobook narrated by Jennifer Ikeda
Source: Audible
My Rating: 


Goodreads ★ Amazon ★ B&N ★ TBD

A richly inventive novel about a centuries-old vampire, a spellbound witch, and the mysterious manuscript that draws them together.

Deep in the stacks of Oxford's Bodleian Library, young scholar Diana Bishop unwittingly calls up a bewitched alchemical manuscript in the course of her research. Descended from an old and distinguished line of witches, Diana wants nothing to do with sorcery; so after a furtive glance and a few notes, she banishes the book to the stacks. But her discovery sets a fantastical underworld stirring, and a horde of daemons, witches, and vampires soon descends upon the library. Diana has stumbled upon a coveted treasure lost for centuries - and she is the only creature who can break its spell.

Debut novelist Deborah Harkness has crafted a mesmerizing and addictive read, equal parts history and magic, romance and suspense. Diana is a bold heroine who meets her equal in vampire geneticist Matthew Clairmont, and gradually warms up to him as their alliance deepens into an intimacy that violates age-old taboos. This smart, sophisticated story harks back to the novels of Anne Rice, but it is as contemporary and sensual as the Twilight series - with an extra serving of historical realism.
So this is a book that I don't think I normally would have picked up. It ended up being not what I expected at all, but I found myself really just interested in where this story was going. I've been trying to read more adult fantasy, and I think this one falls under the Contemporary Fantasy category, which is definitely a subgenre that I want to read more books from. I actually never heard the term until Wyrd and Wonder!

A Discovery of Witches is an unorthodox pairing of mythology and history with just a dash of science. It was cool to read about a character like Diana who is so career minded and is able to prove herself in a battle of wits with fellow academics. Even when they are bad, bad, witches that probably want to kill her! Diana is so stubborn and she doesn't back down, which is what endeared me to her so much. I also like that the whole time when both the witches and the vampires are telling her to stay away from Matthew Clairmont, she's just thinking, "fucckkk that!" Okay, maybe not in so many of those words, but that is definitely the feeling that the narrator of this audiobook gave me with her performance. I haven't read a lot of books where the main characters are academics, so it was a treat for me to read about Diana and Matthew and how important their work is to them. It's really refreshing to read a fantasy novel that has people actually holding down real jobs. 

Jennifer Ikeda, the narrator of this book did an awesome job. This is a massive book, it's 24 hours on audio and that's with listening to it on 1.15 speed! It took me a very long time to get through this audio, but I wouldn't say that it was boring in the least. Unlike other books of it's size, this audio was a joy to listen to. Ikeda really brought out the emotions in this novel, and I think she did alright with the various accents in this one. Her Scottish accent for Hamish was little shaky, but I think her accent for Matthew and his mother's French accent were really good! Although, being American I can't really judge those accents, so don't take my word for it. I believe she does the narration for the other books in this series, and I already have the second book in my queue.

Another thing I liked about this novel was how much it tied in with Alchemy and how influential it was historically. I've actually been doing some research on Alchemy for a WIP I'm working on, so it was really cool to hear some familiar concepts in this book about witches! I am definitely intrigued about where this story is going. 

Have you read the All Souls Trilogy? What do you like about them? (NO SPOILERS for the other books, please!)


Happy Reads Everyone!
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Friday, May 11, 2018

Wyrd and Wonder: My Favorite Fantasy Podcast


Since I'm behind on the blog, I totally missed doing a post for my podcast feature Deanna Listens this month. (It's normally the first Monday of the month). So instead, I wanted to talk about my current podcast obsession, Hello From The Magic Tavern. Another reason why I am talking about this outside of my podcast feature is because I definitely already featured them for Deanna Listens. It was very early on when I first started the feature, but I recently got back into listening to this podcast and I  am OBSESSED.

So what is hello from the magic tavern, and how does it relate to Wyrd and Wonder? HFTMT is a improv comedy podcast that is about this guy from Chicago named Arnie Niekamp who fell through a magic portal behind a Burger King and landed into the magical, fantastical land of Foon. He had his podcast equipment with him, so now he spends his days in the tavern doing a podcast with Chunt, a shapeshifter who is mostly a badger, and Usidore The Blue, a wizard that has like six thousand names and has to yell them a the top of his lungs during his introduction on every episode. It's honestly my favorite part of the podcast! Foon is kind of like Narnia or Middle Earth, it's got all sorts of creatures and there is a Dark Lord that is trying to take over everything. It's hilarious and so very inappropriate, which is probably why I love it so much.

What this podcast does differently which I love is that instead of traditional credits at the end there is a mysterious man that tells the listener everything you just listened to is not real and there are definitely not multiple dimensions. I think it makes it pretty entertaining and actually makes me listen to the episode all the way through.

I haven't listened to this podcast in awhile, but I recently started going through the backlog and just listening to nothing but this. This podcast keeps me entertained all the time. I listen to it a lot at home just doing the dishes or while I'm waiting for my boyfriend to get ready for bed. His facial expressions when he hears some of the stuff can only be described as "what in the actual fuck..." That only makes me laugh more.

If you like inappropriate comedy and you like fantasy I would recommend listening to this podcast. It definitely takes the fantasy genre and spins it on it's head.

Happy Reads Everyone!
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Thursday, May 10, 2018

Wyrd and Wonder: Why I Like Fantasy


For my first discussion post for Wyrd and Wonder, I want to talk about the most obvious thing -- why I like fantasy! I'm also not just talking about books, but with TV/movies, video games, etc.

I actually found answering this question to be a bit hard. I don't feel like I had a really clear answer like I do with why I like Sci-fi. So why do I like fantasy so much?

I think part of it is that being a scifi fan it's almost a natural progression to also be into fantasy. The two genres are constantly lumped together that it's kind of hard to just like one over the other. Although, I do think if someone made me I could pick one over the other. I think it's really rare to find readers that strictly read fantasy or strictly read scifi. The genres intermingle so much, that's it's almost unavoidable. It's definitely a genre that I want to dedicate myself to more, because I definitely want to start reading less YA fantasy and more traditional High Fantasy.

I think another reason why I like it so much is why a lot of readers my age like fantasy. Because of the Chronicles of Narnia. I spent a lot of time in my youth reading the Narnia books. I'm actually trying to re-read them, and maybe I can do some re-read reviews of the whole series this month. Fingers crossed if I can get to it in time. I have a lot of nostalgia love for them, and I do think it definitely opening up the fantasy genre to me.

I also would say that because I love Star Wars so much that might also be why I'm into both fantasy and scifi. A lot of fans actually argue that Star Wars is really a fantasy story just set against a Space Opera background. I think that's a really fair point. I think the series straddles both genres in different ways, and I do think it might be why I love both genres so much.

Why do you like fantasy so much? Is there one book or movie that made you love the genre?

Happy Reads Everyone!
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Wednesday, May 9, 2018

Wyrd and Wonder: ARC Review of Furyborn by Claire Legrand

Furyborn (Empirium, #1) By Claire Legrand
Publisher: SOURCEBOOKS Fire
Release Date: May 22nd, 2018
Format: Egalley, 512 pages
Source: Netgalley*
My Rating: 


Goodreads ★ Amazon ★ B&N ★ TBD

Follows two fiercely independent young women, centuries apart, who hold the power to save their world...or doom it.

When assassins ambush her best friend, the crown prince, Rielle Dardenne risks everything to save him, exposing her ability to perform all seven kinds of elemental magic. The only people who should possess this extraordinary power are a pair of prophesied queens: a queen of light and salvation and a queen of blood and destruction. To prove she is the Sun Queen, Rielle must endure seven trials to test her magic. If she fails, she will be executed...unless the trials kill her first.

A thousand years later, the legend of Queen Rielle is a mere fairy tale to bounty hunter Eliana Ferracora. When the Undying Empire conquered her kingdom, she embraced violence to keep her family alive. Now, she believes herself untouchable--until her mother vanishes without a trace, along with countless other women in their city. To find her, Eliana joins a rebel captain on a dangerous mission and discovers that the evil at the heart of the empire is more terrible than she ever imagined.

As Rielle and Eliana fight in a cosmic war that spans millennia, their stories intersect, and the shocking connections between them ultimately determine the fate of their world--and of each other.
Furyborn is an epic young adult fantasy novel that I had some mixed feelings about. I think for me this book falls into some of the same pitfalls that other books of it's kind suffer from --the hype monster! Don't get me wrong, hyping up a book and talking about it is awesome for the publishing industry and it gets us all talking and excited about new books, but sometimes I think I go into books with way too many expectations. I think for me that's what happened with this book. I also want to say that a 3-star review is NOT bad, it just means that this book didn't totally wow me or kept me interesting in reading it non-stop. 3 star is decent, 3 stars mean I just thought it was okay, and it's perfectly okay to feel lukewarm about books. 

One of the things I did like about this novel was the world building. I think some of it could have been fleshed out a little more, but since I know this is going to be a trilogy, I am a little more forgiven with that. I thought the two sides of the world we hear about in this novel was really interesting. We see two very different worlds from getting the thoughts of both Rielle and Eliana. I thought it was cool to see these two women existing in the same land, but across times and how much it has changed from one's time to the next. Rielle's world was a little more interesting to me, because I always find it interesting when magic and God are used together in a fantasy world. It interests me when a world can believe in a higher power, but also are okay with having magical abilities. I think we perceive that as not being the case, so I find it cool when I see that in fantasy novels. There's mentions about Angels in this book, and I feel like I need to know more about what is going on there. Are they really Angels in how we view them biblically, or are they just another race that the humans in this land don't really understand? I assume this will be fleshed out in the follow up books. Eliana's world is so different from Rielle's, that I just struggled to figure out HOW that was going to happen, and I think we only get a kernel of that by the book's end. 

One of the flaws I found with this book was frankly just the characters themselves. Even though the book constantly goes back and forth between the two girls, I just couldn't connect with either of them. I just didn't like either of them, and I find it really hard to enjoy something when I just don't care what happens to the characters. I also felt like it was pretty predictable how these two were connected and why we should care about both of them. I think I figured it out just a few chapters in, and it felt like it drug on to finally just come out and say it. 

Another little issue I have with this book is that I don't think it should have been coded for teens. I'm not a prude or anything, and I'll read book sex any day, but there is a sex scene in this book that I thought was a touch too adult for the YA/Teen book scene. Not to say that teens don't have sex or don't know what it is, it just felt like it was a little too graphic for a teen book and I don't know if there really is a warning about there being sex in it. This book is definitely geared towards older teens, and I wouldn't want a younger kid reading a book with something like that if it's not something they are ready to handle. Maybe I'm reading in to it too much, but it just made me feel like maybe this book should have been coded as adult fantasy.

This book is DENSE, so if you like a good long fantasy novel, I would still recommend it. I think for me it came down to not connecting with the characters, but I think a lot of other fantasy readers would really enjoy it. 

Have you read this book? What did you think? Do you think I'm being too weird about the sex it in? What do you think about YA books and how graphic a sex scene should be written?

*I received a free egalley copy of this book in exchange for my honest review

Happy Reads Everyone!
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Tuesday, May 8, 2018

Wyrd And Wonder AKA Flailing about Fantasy (+Giveway)


You guys, it's May so you know what that means???? It's time for Wyrd and Wonder, May's newest blogging event dedicated to all things fantasy!

W&W is jointly hosted by Jorie from Jorie Loves a Story, Lisa from Over The Effing Rainbow and Imyril from There's always room for one More. If you are around when I participate in Sci-Fi Month in November, these three probably sound familiar. I'm so glad they decided to put together this new event to focus on fantasy. Thank you all for your hard work in putting this together!

I'm a little late to the game with this event, so I'm hoping to post a lot this week to catch up. I hate to confess though, I am also really behind on my fantasy reading, so I'm hoping to finish some more books so I can review for this event.

I'm kind of doing a fly by the seat of my pants schedule for this event. I didn't really have much of a plan. I will definitely be doing some reviews, and maybe some discussions. I'll probably talk about some video games too! I'm pretty excited to get started with this event and to see what everyone else is talking about! I have a lot of catching up to do.

May is an exciting time for my blog in addition to this fun event, because it's my blogiversary! This year is the big 4 years of having been running this blog. That's so crazy to me. I really enjoy doing this, and I'm glad I don't get so bogged down by numbers. What has been really important to me these last few years are the connections I have made with other bloggers.

So to celebrate both my blogiversary and #WyrdAndWonder I am doing a giveway that will end at the end of the month. It's going to be international, as long as the Book Depository ships to your country. It's going to be for anything under $20 USD from their site. Just don't cheat. I like for giveaways to be fun for everyone, and I do check all the entries so if I catch someone cheating all your entires will be deleted and void. Good luck!

What fantasy books are you going to read this month?

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Happy Reads Everyone!
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Monday, May 7, 2018

April Wrap Up


I am VERY behind in all of my posts on this blog, so you might be wondering, "April Wrap up? It's already the second week of May!". Yes, it is, but I was on vacation last week so I also took a vacation from writing on the blog. I didn't schedule any posts either since the week before my vacation was crazy busy. So I'll be trying to play catch up on the blog all week!

DEANNA LISTENS

For Deanna Listens back in April I talked about yet another Book Riot podcast, Hey YA! If you are a YA fan, I highly recommend it.

DEANNA PLAYS


This month for Deanna Plays I talked about how the book Ready Player One made me want to get back into video games.

BOOKS I REVIEWED






What books did you read in April? What are you excited for in May?



Happy Reads Everyone!
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