Review: Norse Mythology by Neil Gaiman

norse mythology

Title: Norse Mythology

Author: Neil Gaiman

Publisher: W. W. Norton & Company

Date: 7th February 2017

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Before picking up this book (or rather, switching on my Kindle) I had never read anything that Neil Gaiman had written. I have heard of him (although I didn’t realise some of the books he had written, such as Coraline) but I never thought to read his work. Everyone said how masterful he was and I figured I would get around to it eventually. Well, eventually did come around when I saw Norse Mythology on offer for £2, which is a great buy.

I have always been intrigued by mythology, especially Greek mythology, and I had a few text books that I once used for a story idea (I never finished it) and I loved reading YA inspired by it. One of my favourite adult series was Goddess Summoning by P. C. Cast, in which different Gods and Goddesses feature. When I saw Norse Mythology, I realise that I didn’t know much apart from what Marvel had taught me (which doesn’t even feature all of the God’s or even Odin’s favourite, which is Balder).

So, I dived into the stories and I loved them. People weren’t wrong when they said that Neil Gaiman is a master of storytelling. There was so much detail woven into the tales and he breathed life into them, making them so vivid in my mind. All the tales were building to the end of days, Ragnarok, and it was so interesting to see how all the parts fit together.

Thor is very different to the one that Chris Hemsworth plays. For one, he is a redhead, and the second is that he isn’t the brightest, often letting pride and ego get in the way. I loved reading about Loki and all the tricks he played, always getting himself and others into trouble, but somehow making things right again. Not to mention, I finally found out what happened to Odin’s eye and why it was gone.

Freya, one of the Goddesses, featured prominently, often put into situations thanks to the Gods, none that she was pleased about, and she often fell out with Loki. We learnt about Balder, Odin’s favourite son, who was the sun for all, and how Loki betrayed him. We learnt about how Thor’s hammer came to be, as well as other gifts given to the Gods, and I found myself wanting to read more.

While this book was very informative, written so that I thought it could have been real, it was also funny in places, with action and drama. I loved the narration that featured throughout, making it seem more real and I was able to connect with the stories. Overall, this was a great read and I think 4 stars is the perfect rating.

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Review: Children of Blood and Bone by Tomi Adeyemi

children of blood and bone

Title: Children of Blood and Bone

Author: Tomi Adeyemi

Publisher: Macmillan Children’s Books

Date: 8th March 2018

Buy This Book from Book Depository, Free Delivery World Wide

It isn’t often that I buy into the hype of new books. It can be dangerous because sometimes they can let you down and not be as good as you would have hoped. That wasn’t the case for Children of Blood and Bone. This debut fantasy novel was everything I hoped it would be and more. Words can’t even describe how much I adored this book. I soaked in every detail, every page that was full of action and I have to say that it is probably the best book I have read so far this year. It isn’t often that a book goes straight into the number one spot on the NYT bestseller list.

There was once a time when magic flowed freely through the Maji in Orisha, when the ten clans wielded their powers and thrived. Then one day, the magic disappeared altogether. They were left defenceless and slaughtered by the King, wiping out all traces of their heritage. Zelie was left alone with her father and brother when their mother was killed for them to see. All hope was lost as the people kept to themselves, especially the Maji with their white hair. By chance, Zelie comes across a rogue princess who just might hold the key to bringing magic back to Orisha, and so they embark on a dangerous quest to restore it. They must outrun the prince who is hot on their trail and hell bent on following the King’s orders, before time runs out.

The world that Adeyemi has created is one of a kind, inspired by West African mythology, and the history is explained in so much detail that I felt as if I was there with the characters. The information was weaved into the story effortlessly and I never felt that I was in overload. When it comes to writing a story that is intriguing, captivating and fast paced, Tomi Adeyemi has it down to a tee. I don’t think I’ve ever flown through a book of this size so quickly (it isn’t a small book by any means with over 500 pages). And I can’t forget to mention how incredible the magic system was, and unique as well. I loved how there were different types of magic that people could specialise in as well.

Some of the history in the book is heartbreaking, especially when it comes to the slaughtering of the Maji and it has echoes of what happened in real life to African people, as well as the oppression that is still happening in the world. We are made to feel every emotion in this book and I was kept on the edge of my seat, waiting to find out if our characters were successful in their bid to restore magic.

All of the characters that feature in this book were fully fleshed out, as though they could step out of the pages and into real life. I laughed with them during the dialogue, I rolled my eyes at some of their actions and I was cheering them on. Zelie was a wonderfully strong protagonist, a fierce warrior guided by her emotions and someone I was rooting for. You could really see her growing throughout the book, learning about magic, and it was great to read about her relationships. Amari, our rogue princess, was just as great and quite a surprise later on. She really grew into herself and showed that we all have courage within us. While Amari and Zelie’s relationship was a little rocky to begin with, it was great to see the friendship blossom.

I can’t forget about the villain of the story, the King who was cruel, vindictive and awful to the people of Orisha. His son, Inan, was a tough one for me. You want to hate him, but at the same time you can’t seem to. Something I loved was the way the perspectives of the story switched between Zelie, Amari and Inan. It provided me with so much more information than I would have had if there was just one main character.

I still can’t get over this book and it’s been nearly a week since I finished reading it. I need more of this incredible world and the amazing cast of characters, especially after that ending. I have a feeling there is so much more to explore and more adventures to be had. If you are looking for a YA Fantasy story that is full of action and magic, then this is the story for you. The easiest five stars I have ever given out.

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Wrapping Up The Week (12th March – 18th March)

It’s been one of those weeks where it was very tiring and I needed a couple days of doing nothing towards the end of the week. I was hoping to have finished 3 books this week but instead it was only 2. I’m still happy about that though. With my birthday weekend coming up and the Easter bank holidays I am sure I’ll be getting a lot of reading done.

As you all probably know, I finished writing my novel a couple of weeks ago but I haven’t begun the editing process yet. I still have it running around in my head, thinking of new ways to change the story, to make it better. I might also be putting it off because it’s such a big task and I’m not really sure where to begin. Maybe a little research on the art of editing is in order.

Books I read and reviewed…

tokillakingdom

Even though I finished To Kill A Kingdom last week, I finally got the review up and submitted it to NetGalley as well. It was such a great read and very enjoyable, with fleshed out characters and a lot of action as well. If you’re a fan of pirates and sirens, you definitely have to check out this imaginative spin on the tale. You can check out my full review here. 

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I want to say that this is the best book I have read so far this year. Words can’t even describe how much I loved this collection of deliciously dark tales. I can’t even believe that I managed to read it all in less than 24 hours. It’s pretty much unheard of now thanks to all the responsibilities of adult life. If you would like to see what I thought, click here

shadow and bone

Once finishing The Language of Thorns I decided to move on to the Grishaverse trilogy because of how much I fell in love with the world that the fairy tales were set in. While Shadow and Bone started off a little slowly, it was very intriguing and a great introduction to this magical world. I cannot wait until I get to read the Six of Crows duology later on. Click here to check out my review in full.

I am currently reading…

siege and storm

After the ending of the first book I just had to buy the second one! I am about a third of the way through so far and it’s started off great with some action and betrayal. I am hoping that I enjoy it as much as the first, if not more, but hopefully I can finish it by Wednesday and have a review up as well.

Posts from the week…

Top Ten Tuesday: Books That Took Me Completely By Surprise

WWW Wednesday – Goodbye Reading Slump

Managing to write two blog posts as well as three reviews counts as a good week for me so I’m happy. I’m getting back into the swing of things and have a couple of ideas planned. I might start a weekly feature to talk about my writing and as it is my birthday on the 24th I will be doing a birthday blog post (and possibly show off the books I get).

My WIP…

Like I said earlier, I have taken a break from the novel that I need to edit. However…I may have had an idea for another novel…And I might have already created a Pinterest board. This always seems to happen to me when I am about to edit. Something new and shiny comes along, but this time I want to write it as well as editing my previous work. Hopefully it can offer a nice, creative break from the editing which will probably feel torturous. Also, stay tuned for a book aesthetic for the new novel idea in the upcoming week. I can’t wait to share it!

Other Fun Stuff…

The_Lord_of_the_Rings_Characters

This week my boyfriend and I marathoned The Lord of the Rings trilogy and it was amazing to watch them again. It must have been years since I last saw them and I was reminded why they are one of my favourite film series ever. We watched the first two Saturday night and the last one today before football was on. We enjoyed some tasty popcorn and chocolate, and I have no regrets about the amount of calories consumed.

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And that was my week in a nutshell! I hope you all had a great one as well. Let me know what your favourite book of the week was in the comments below!

WWW Wednesday – In A Galaxy…

WWW Wednesday was originally hosted by A Daily Rhythm, and was taken over by Taking on a World of Words.

Happy Valentines Day to everyone, whether you’re loved up or single. I don’t really celebrate the day because I don’t think you should show someone you love them on one day, so me and my boyfriend got a takeaway instead. Can’t go wrong with pizza!

Time to talk about the books…

What Are You Currently Reading?

Zenith

I am a quarter of the way through Zenith so far and I’m enjoying it. Nothing has wowed me so far and we are only just getting into the story, but I like the characters. I can’t wait to find out some more of their backstories and see more of the galaxy. The only problem I have is that it can be a bit information overload at times (especially with the descriptions), but I’ll get used to the style soon.

What Did You Recently Finish Reading?

reign of the fallen

Reign of the Fallen was the last book that I read and I loved it, LOVED it! Honestly this book was so entertaining, but it also touched on a few dark subjects such as how to deal with grief and the effects it can have. The characters were amazing and everything just felt real, as if I really was the main character. You can check out my 4.5 star review here.

What Do You Think You’ll Read Next?

between the blade and the heart

I hope to finish Zenith this weekend, so I can begin Between the Blade and the Heart by Amanda Hocking. This was a NetGalley approval and is due to be released on the 22nd of this month. Hopefully I can read it before then and have a review up for you all. I just hope that I enjoy it.

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I hope you’ve all been having a lovely week so far and that you’re enjoying the book (or books) that you’re reading!

Review: Reign of the Fallen by Sarah Glenn Marsh

reign of the fallen

Title: Reign of the Fallen

Author: Sarah Glenn Marsh

Date: 23rd January 2018

Publisher: Razorbill

I don’t think I have read a book this quickly in a very long time. The cover is what drew me in to start with. I remember coming across it on twitter and thinking ‘wow, that’s a cool cover. I wonder what it’s about?’ and as soon as I read the blurb I knew it would be something I’d like. And I was right. In fact, I loved Reign of the Fallen. It was emotional, it had action, twists and turns, and characters that I was rooting for.

Odessa is one of Karthia’s Necromancers, a master, and it’s her job to raise the dead. When the noblemen and women die, she goes into the Deadlands and retrieves their souls to bring them back. All the Dead have to remain shrouded, a price they are willing to pay. For if any of their skin is seen by the living they will turn into Shades, demonic creatures with a thirst for blood. Suddenly there are attacks from the Shades, killing the Dead and the living. When one of the Necromancers own dies, they realise that these attacks aren’t random and that someone is controlling the Shades. It is up to Odessa to figure out who is behind it and she wonders if her magic will be the thing to tear apart Karthia.

The world of Karthia felt so real as I was reading the descriptions. I could see, feel and taste the world before Odessa and it was amazing. Karthia was stuck in the past, clinging on to it, unwilling to change for fear of it and I could see the parallels to our own world. I loved the magic system of the world and how your eyes matched with your magical ability, all Necromancers having blue eyes, Beast Masters having green etc. I was trying to think of a book that was based on Necromancers and I couldn’t come up with anything, which made this book very different in my eyes. The Deadlands were as eerie, magical and dangerous as I imagined they would be.

Odessa was such a complex character and her grief spoke volumes in this book. It was heart breaking and I connected with her, feeling everything that she was going through. While she was weak at times, she was also a badass Necromancer with a sense of humour and she was strong when she needed to be, when others in her position would have fallen. She is also bisexual and it was interesting to see her romantic interactions with both males and females, and Marsh made it seem so natural, the way it should be in real life.

It wasn’t just Odessa that was representing bisexuality, there were other characters who were gay, both men and women, and it was lovely to see it being represented in such a normal and natural way. While I myself am straight, I can see why a lot of people who aren’t will enjoy this book and all the characters in it.

I would speak about some of the other characters but it could ruin the plot as not all of them stay with us throughout the book and honestly, so many unexpected things happened to them all. I was gasping out loud in shock, my mouth hanging open, unable to believe what I was reading. When a book can make me do that, I know I’m invested. There were so many diverse characters in Reign of the Fallen and they each had their own voice. It was interesting to see how they all dealt with loss in their own ways, because that is what this book is about. Loss, and how we can move on in a way that isn’t harmful to ourselves or others.

There are some incredible lines in this book and I just wanted to share my favourite one.

“The sun still rises and sets, like it always has. It seems cruel that it wouldn’t stop, just for a little while, to show how much darker the world is without them in it.”

This hit me hard, especially the context in which it is written. At the end of the day, we all feel like this at some point, whether you have lost a loved one, lost a friendship or relationship, or some other part of your life. But we all have to move on at some point and I loved how this was shown in Reign of the Fallen.

I could probably ramble on all day about how much I enjoyed this book, but you wouldn’t probably get bored. Overall, Reign of the Fallen was amazing, fast paced and enjoyable. It made me think about things more and it is more than deserving of the 4.5 stars I’m going to give it.

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Wrapping Up The Week (5th February – 11th February)

This week started off great. I celebrated my boyfriend’s birthday, work was going really well, I finished a book and then I got the flu. That wasn’t so great and since Thursday I’ve been feeling pretty bad and I’m only starting to get better now. Because of that I had to delay uploading my review, I couldn’t write anything on my WIP because I couldn’t concentrate, but, as I was feeling a little better yesterday, I got into my reading a lot more. Every cloud has a sliver lining and all that.

I’m hoping that nothing is going to go wrong this week and that everything can get back on track. I’m also going to start walking to work in the mornings, which will take about 45 minutes, instead of getting the bus and walking for 20. Time to get healthy!

In terms of reading it was a really good week. I managed to finish reading two books, one I finished today so I won’t have a review up yet, so keep your eyes peeled.

Books I read and reviewed…

the hazel wood

Even though I finished reading The Hazel Wood by Melissa Albert mid-week, I only managed to upload my review yesterday, which gave me some time to think it over.  While there were parts of this book that I loved, there were other parts that I didn’t like. One being the fact that it took a while to get to the fairy tale parts. And for a book that is supposed to be about dark and creepy tales, it was a little disappointing. You can see my full review here, in which I gave it 3 stars.

reign of the fallen

I just finished Reign of the Fallen by Sarah Glenn Marsh this evening and I swear, I haven’t read a book this quickly in a while. It was such a great read and I enjoyed every second. There were so many twists and turns, with some shocking events taking place with characters from the beginning, all the way to the end of the book. Honestly, this book was heartbreaking and amazing and I cannot wait to write a full review which should be up within the next two days.

I am currently reading…

Zenith

While I haven’t actually started reading it yet, I have set my bookmark against page 1 of Zenith by Sasha Alsberg and Lindsay Cummings, which debuted on the New York Times list at number 7. There has been a lot of talk about this book and as I follow the authors on social media I have been seeing it everywhere. Safe to say I am looking forward to reading Zenith and giving my views on a book that some people love and some people hate.

Posts from the week…

Top Ten Tuesday: Books That Have Been On My TBR List Forever

WWW Wednesday – Creepy Fairy Tales

I really hate the fact that I got ill because it meant I wasn’t able to blog as much, especially when I got tagged by another blogger in a post and I was looking forward to joining in.

My WIP…

…is coming along very slowly, especially last week where I only wrote a total of 3,500 words. A lot less than I normally do but I couldn’t help that. I have had ideas buzzing around my head and the characters’ voices have been in my head the last few days (I’m not crazy) and I can’t wait to get back to writing. My energy is picking up now and I’m hoping I can get the next few chapters done this week.

Other Fun Stuff…

how-to-get-away-with-murder

I FINALLY finished season 3 of How To Get Away With Murder and oh wow, am I glad I did. I had forgotten how much I loved this show and now I can head into season 4 with so many questions that need answering. Being ill had its perks as I binge watched the episodes that I hadn’t seen and it felt good.

As well as this I also got around to watching The Justice League and I really enjoyed it. I’m a big superhero fan and the film was so enjoyable, much better than Batman Vs Superman. On a side note, Aquaman is now my favourite superhero.

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I’m glad that this week is out of the way and now it is on to better things (praying I don’t get ill). I hope you all had a better week than I did and read some great books.

Review: The Hazel Wood by Melissa Albert

the hazel wood

Title: The Hazel Wood

Author: Melissa Albert

Date: 8th February 2018

Publisher: Penguin

I was one of the lucky people that got accepted to read this on Netgalley before the release date, and I was really excited because I had heard so much. The Hazel Wood was one of the strangest books I have read in a long time and while I was intrigued by the idea, I felt that it could have been a lot darker. I was expecting creepier tales and settings to dominate the book and I was a little disappointed that they didn’t. You can definitely see the inspiration from Alice in Wonderland and while I enjoyed this book, I wish we got to see more of the Fantasy setting.

For her whole life, Alice and her mother, Ella, have constantly moved from place to place, bad luck following them wherever they go. Until one day they hear that Alice’s grandmother, Althea, an author of a book filled with dark fairy tales, dies in the Hazel Wood, they finally settle down. They were wrong to feel safe and one day Ella mysteriously disappears, leaving behind nothing but a message telling Alice to stay away from the Hazel Wood. Unable to do that, she embarks on a quest to rescue her mother from the people that have supposedly come from the world of fairy tales.

I will say that I prefer the second half of the book to the first, because at the beginning it felt very Contemporary with not a lot of Fantasy elements. I understand why, but it would have been nice for our characters to get to Hinterland, the place where the fairy tales reside, instead of milling about in the city and travelling by car. However, I really enjoyed the dark and strange world of Hinterland and the Hazel Wood. Some things might not have made sense (do fairy tales ever make sense with their rhymes and what not), but I thought that the descriptions of the world were great and intriguing. I loved the idea of the ‘story’ characters and how they acted. Not to mention, there were a couple plot twists that I didn’t see coming, which is always a nice surprise.

Alice is the kind of character who doesn’t care much about anything, except for her mother that she will do anything for, even if it means travelling to a far off place they have no idea if it even exists. I wanted to like Alice, and I did in parts, but she isn’t the most likeable character, often being rude and ignorant (which is understandable later on when we learn of her background). However, I enjoyed reading about Finch, the rich boy who helps Alice with her mission. He was so lovely and tried to help, even when he probably shouldn’t have because Alice was awful to him at times. Because of that it was a little awkward reading some interactions, especially when it came to mentioning his race (as he’s dark skinned) and Alice always seemed to bring up how entitled he was because he had money.

I wish we had a chance to meet more of the fairy tale characters from Hinterland and I would have loved to know more of the tales, instead of the few that are mentioned. The book definitely would have seemed more interesting if there were more fantastical elements to it. The pacing of the book was mainly good, with only a few slow parts, but I think most books have them in places.

Overall, while there were things I would have improved on and parts I didn’t connect with, I enjoyed the idea of the story and the majority of The Hazel Wood. Was it the most amazing book I’ve ever read? No, and I think that’s because I was expecting it to be something it wasn’t. I am intrigued to know more about the world, just not so much about how it works alongside the ‘normal’ world. After a long time thinking about this book, I think that a 3 star rating is what I will give it.

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Review: Keeper of the Watch by Kristen L. Jackson

keeper of the watch

Title: Keeper of the Watch

Author: Kristen L. Jackson

Date: 1st February 2018

Publisher: Black Rose Writing

I would like to say thank you to the publishers for approving me to read this book on NetGalley. One of my resolutions for 2018 was to read more Young Adult Sci-Fi books and Keeper of the Watch was just that. Unfortunately, as much as I wanted to enjoy this book and love it, it fell a little flat for me. I’m not sure if it’s because I’m not completely into Sci-Fi books or it was the writing style, but there was something that didn’t click for me. However, I did enjoy the action sequences, the original ideas and some of the banter between the characters.

Chase Walker is plagued by a strange feeling that someone is watching him and although he tries to play it off, it never leaves. Ever since his uncle died, he has been drawn to an old watch that was left for him and the feeling scares him. Things take a drastic turn when he realises that there are people after him and the mysterious Alyx saves his life, claiming to know what has been happening to him. Chase just has to figure out whether he can trust her and what he will do with the information he discovers.

I will start off by saying that I liked the fast pace of this book, especially when it got towards the halfway point and the story really kicked into high gear with the action. Keeper of the Watch is such a unique story and very different from what I’ve read before. I was left wanting to know more and to see where the characters would go, what risks they would take (turns out things were pretty smooth sailing…a little too smooth for me).

While the characters were a little stereotypical at times (looking at you Chase) they were enjoyable and often had me chuckling, especially Alyx with her snarky comments and chastising of Chase. There were a few times where I cringed at the motivational speeches and, at times, predictable nature of the characters, I did enjoy reading about them. However, I wasn’t a big fan of the romance and at times I felt like it was being forced. Now that I’m older the whole falling-in-love-straight-away thing is a bit overdone and creepy in a way. I feel that it would have been better had things developed more slowly.

As I have read a lot of Fantasy I am used to books with plenty of descriptions and intricate story lines, something that Keeper of the Watch didn’t have and I wished there had been a little more world building involved. Saying that, the dimensions seem realistic and totally possible. I would say that this book is aimed at a much younger audience on the YA spectrum, with the style of writing that is more basic than I am used to.

Overall, Keeper of the Watch was an okay read for me. It didn’t stand out and if I’m honest I wasn’t expecting it to because of the genre it is. However, if you love Sci-Fi and don’t mind something that is more light hearted and easy to read, you should check it out. I am giving this 3 stars.

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Review: Heir of Fire by Sarah J. Maas

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Title: Heir of Fire

Author: Sarah J. Maas

Date: 11th September 2014

Publisher: Bloomsbury Children’s

This series is incredible and it has gotten better with every book I have read. It’s been a while since I loved a series as much as this and I am so passionate about the characters and their world. I just can’t get enough! Heir of Fire is the best so far because it was tense, fast paced and I was hooked. As this is the third book in the series there will be some spoilers below so if you haven’t read the others, don’t read anymore.

Heir of Fire picks up with Celaena arriving in Wendlyn to carry out the task the King had set her, to steal military plans from the Kingdom. Going against his orders, she hides out until she meets the mysterious Fae Prince, Rowan Whitethorn, who takes her to see Queen Maeve, who can give her the answers that she seeks. But first, she must master her gifts with the help of Rowan. Together they travel to Mistborn, where the Demi-Fae live and they begin a gruelling training regime. All the while a darkness is growing in the mountains where the Ironteeth witches are gathering to help the King of Adarlan. Back in Rifthold Chaol is working with the rebels to come up with ways to help Dorian control his magic and how they can restore it to the land.

There is so much that goes on in this book that it’s hard to know where to start (and it isn’t exactly a small book either). I’m going to start off by saying that I loved the multiple POVs in this book and it was so easy to keep track of everyone’s story. My favourite, by far, was learning about Manon Blackbeak and the wyverns that had been created. I can’t even begin to explain how incredible it was to learn of their history (especially after being introduced to the Yellowlegs clan in Crown of Midnight) and Manon was one of the most badass characters I’ve seen in a while. There is definitely more than meets the eye with her and I’m excited to see where her story leads her (also, Abraxos is amazing and I got Toothless vibes).

The character growth, especially for Celaena, was amazing and learning about her past helped us to understand why she acted the way she did. I was almost crying at some parts because it was so emotional and I think it all comes down to the fact that Maas has created a character that we can all connect with in some way. The shock of finding out that she was Aelin, heir to the throne of Terrasen, stuck with me at the beginning of the novel and it was fascinating to read her interactions at Mistward and the struggles she faced regaining her power.

We were introduced to so many new characters in this novel and they all had their own voice that was distinct and unique. While Rowan seemed to be a bit of an arse in the beginning (he was just a little bit harsh to Celaena), we later grew to understand him and in the end I could feel him becoming one of my favourites. We also met Aedion, the General of one of the King’s armies, who was helping Chaol uncover the secrets of how the magic in Adarlan disappeared and how they could indeed get it back. He, too, was a bit of an arse, but in the end it all made sense and I was rooting for him, for them all really.

Dorian managed to meet someone, a healer named Sorscha, who made him happy and I couldn’t help but smile when I read his POV, although that ending had me gasping because I did not expect a thing! It was heart breaking and left me wanting to know what would happen to all my favourite characters. The last few chapters sent me spiralling and I just know that Queen of Shadows is going to start with a bang. Also, I really, really want the King to die because he’s so evil and it’s infuriating. I don’t think I’ve ever felt this strongly about an antagonist and once again, it’s all down to Maas’ writing ability.

I could go on and on about how amazing this book is and it wouldn’t do it justice. The writing is incredible as always and the world building was fantastic. We learned so much more and I could vividly picture it all. There was action, darkness, drama, romance and heartache. This book made me feel everything and I just love it. How could I not give it 5 stars?

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ARC Review: Keeper by Kim Chance

Keeper

Title: Keeper

Author: Kim Chance

Date: 30th January 2018

Publisher: Flux Books

I am so thankful that I was approved on Netgalley to review this book because as soon as I read the synopsis, I knew it would be my cup of tea and I was right. Keeper was the first book that I read on my Kindle and I really enjoyed it. Kim Chance created a book that is fun, entertaining and gripping, with a hint of danger. There were a few plot twists I wasn’t expecting (some I did) and I was left wanting to read more. While it isn’t the best book I’ve ever read (I think it has to do with the fact I’m more used to older characters so a 16 year old girl was a bit different) I did enjoy reading it and found myself laughing out loud at some parts.

Lainey Styles is your average 16 year old girl, until she is attacked by a 200 year old witch who won’t leave her alone. It seems impossible and as hard as she tries to convince herself that it isn’t real, she has to face the reality she is being haunted. With the help of her comic-book loving best friend Maggie and street fighter Ty, they piece together the mystery and realise that Lainey is also a witch.

She isn’t just any old witch though. Lainey is a Keeper, just as her mother was, and she has the ability to unlock and use the Grimoire her family has spent centuries trying to protect. But the Grimoire was stolen by the Master, a dangerous and malevolent man who is hell bent on ruling the supernatural world. It’s Lainey’s job to get it back.

I will start off by saying that it does take a little while to get into the action of this book. I felt that it took a bit of time to get to all the witchy magic, but once we do it is great. There is action, drama and fighting scenes (I love those), as well as twists and turns that made me gasp (yes, they were that shocking). The writing was fun, bubbly and easy to read. Kim Chance perfectly captured the way a 16 year old girl would react to being told she is a witch and the language she used was perfect.

The characters in this book are just as good! Lainey was wonderful, smart, funny and unique. It was great to be in her mind and experience the emotions that we would be feeling in her situation. She doesn’t just accept what is happening to her and I loved that. I also enjoyed seeing her relationship with her Uncle Gareth and his girlfriend who is a seer (Lainey’s parents died when she was young) and how much they cared about her.

As for Lainey’s best friend Maggie, well…how can you not love someone who always uses superheroes for analogies (I’m a big Marvel fan). She also says ‘holy crapkittens’ which made me chuckle, and she will do anything for Lainey, something I could definitely appreciate. Ty was a little mystery that captured my heart the more we learned about him. He’s charming, a total kickass and kind towards Lainey. While they may have seemed a little cheesy and cliche, I ended up loving the characters, especially our mysterious 200 year old witch.

Yes, there are some YA tropes thrown into this book, but I felt that they were different to others and it was refreshing. I found myself flying through Keeper, especially after the halfway mark and the last quarter was my favourite part. There is a lot of action, magic usage and problems that Lainey and her friends encounter. We have an interesting villain who wants magic for himself and is ruthless when he doesn’t get his way.

Overall, Keeper was an engaging read and it has left me wanting to read the next one (let’s home Kim Chance does write it because I need answers to some things). It is not the best YA book I have read and even though it is a little similar to others, I ended up enjoying it. When it comes to giving this book a rating, I am deciding between 3 1/2 stars and 4 stars, so I’ll give it the higher one!

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