5 Books I’m Most Excited For This Autumn

Autumn, my favourite time of the year! It is perfect for wrapping up with a blanket, a hot cup of coffee on the side and brand news books on my shelves, because there are quite a few new ones that I am looking forward to.

The last three months haven’t been great for my blog or my reading, mainly because things have been so hectic with my freelance work. However, I am finally starting to get into a routine and I want to get back to blogging again. I can’t promise there will be posts on certain days but I will be reading a lot more than I have been (because I’ve been averaging a book a month when I used to read one in 4/5 days). I have to thank Vicious by V. E. Schwab for pulling me out of my three-month long reading slump because I read that book within 4 days and it was incredible! You can expect to see a review on that very soon.

So, the books I am excited to read this Autumn are…

1. Vengeful by V. E. Schwab

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After falling in love with the first one, how could I not want to read the second one? While I may not have it in my possession yet, I will be ordering it when I get paid next week. I’ve only heard great things and some people are saying it is even better than the first! There is something about Schwab’s writing that makes her books perfect to read at this time of year. I definitely got X-Men vibes from the first book, so if you are a fan of the franchise you should check out Vicious.

2. Two Dark Reigns by Kendare Blake

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This set of books is one of my favourite darker YA series and I cannot wait to get my hands on the third instalment. While I pre-ordered it back in July I unfortunately have to wait until the end of October to have it as I ordered it with another pre-order that isn’t out until then and I chose to bundle them together to save money on shipping. Either way, people are already loving this book and I can’t wait to see new parts of this dark world that Blake has created.

3. Tower of Dawn by Sarah J. Maas

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In preparation for the final book in the series, I will be reading Tower of Dawn this month and hopefully finishing it before Kingdom of Ash is released. I’ve been having issues with regards to her other series, A Court of Thorns and Roses, because it took me forever to read the second book and I am still trying to finish the third one. However, I am hoping that Tower of Dawn will be different and can get me excited to see how this series will end.

4. Kingdom of Ash by Sarah J. Maas

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Can I just comment on how beautiful this cover is in the white version because wow…it is my favourite! After the ending of Empire of Storms I couldn’t wait until this book was released because of that cliffhanger. This will be a huge book with 992 pages (lord help me) but I am sure it will be worth it and give the series a satisfying end and hopefully it won’t make me cry. I have no idea what to expect, but I can’t wait to read it!

5. Godsgrave by Jay Kristoff

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Again, another book that I don’t actually own yet but I intend on buying it when I purchase Vengeful. I absolutely loved Nevernight because it was unlike anything I’d ever read before and completely captured my attention (and you can check out my review here). Plus, it is dark and moody which is perfect for Autumn when the nights are getting darker and everything is spookier, especially around Halloween. I’ve seen a lot of people say they were upset at the ending, which makes me even more excited to read it and find out what will happen to the characters.

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These are all the books that I hope to get to this Autumn, which gives me until the end of November to read them all. Fingers crossed I can do it! What book are you looking forward to reading the most this month?

Review: Sea Witch by Sarah Henning

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Title: Sea Witch

Author: Sarah Henning

Publisher: Harper Collins UK

Date: 31st July 2018

I would like to start this review off by saying thank you to Harper Collins for giving me a chance to review this book on NetGalley. As soon as I heard about the synopsis for Sea Witch I instantly thought it could be something I would enjoy. I love the Little Mermaid and books that are loosely based on fairy tales are very in at the moment, but this was different. Instead of focusing on Ariel, it would be the character that would become Ursula in the Little Mermaid, but with a twist.

Evie was always the outcast, which was made worse when her best friend Anna died four years ago in a tragic accident. But Evie has a secret and when she meets Annemette, who bears a striking resemblance to her friend that drowned, Evie realises she must keep more secrets from her friend Nik, the prince. Annemette cannot stay on land for long, having cast a spell to change her fin into legs that will last four days, until she can find true love with the prince. Evie will do anything to help her new friend, even if it means harnessing her magic and risking it all.

It took me a little while to read this book and I think it’s because I was going through a reading slump, which might have affected my views on this book. I really liked certain aspects of this book, especially the setting which takes its inspiration from Copenhagen and places like that. There is even a place mentioned in the book that is real, which I thought was really cool. However, this is a very slow book until you get to the last quarter and I think that is why I struggled.

I had a hard time connecting with the characters, especially the main character Evie as it is her point of view we see from. I really wanted to love this book, but it fell a little short for me. With the premise of witches having been hunted in the past and having to hide in secret, I expected more magic and for it to be darker. Unfortunately, not a lot happens in the first two thirds apart from characters having conversations and going to parties.

However, while I had mixed feelings about Evie, I really enjoyed the scenes with Nik in them because he was sweet and charming. Exactly the kind of Prince we need in a story and it was interesting to read his interactions with both Evie and Annemette. You always get the feeling that there is something off with Annemette and as the story unravels we learn more about her, which was quite the shock later on. I love a good plot twist in a story and this had plenty!

I won’t lie, I almost stopped reading this book twice, but as it was an ARC I persevered and was rewarded with the last quarter of the book. I would actually say that the wait is worth it because it was fast paced, intriguing and there was so much going on. I was actually shocked at some of the revelations and I felt that it had the perfect ending with the epilogue.

If you are thinking about picking up Sea Witch, then you need to know that it is quite slow and not a lot of action/magic happens for the majority of the book. If you are okay with that then give this a go because the ending is worth it. I struggled trying to come up with a rating for this but I think a solid 3 stars works well.

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Let’s Catch Up…

So, if you’ve been following my blog for a while now you may have noticed that for the majority of July I was pretty absent. The last blog post I sent out was the 11th, and while I wished I had the motivation to blog…I just didn’t. I’m writing this post to explain a couple of the reasons why I disappeared and how I’m going to try my best to make this blog what it used to be. If not better.

July was a really tough month for me and a lot happened in such a short space of time that I lost a lot of motivation, not just with my blog, but also with my writing (which you all know is something I love). In the first half of the month I was ill twice, which really zapped it out of me, and towards the second half I had some personal issues to deal with, as well as being made redundant. That last one was the hardest to deal with as it happened suddenly and I didn’t have a lot of time to adjust.

Luckily, I had an amazing manager who helped me make my CV and cover letter the best it could be and I managed to get 3 interviews before my notice period was even over. I also have another one to go to this week and I’m waiting to hear back from two on whether I am being offered the job. It’s been so stressful because I’m not living at home anymore and there are a lot of bills to pay, so ideally I need someone to offer me a job this week. Somehow I’m managing to hold it together, but while all this has happened I let all my hobbies slide to the side.

I only read two books throughout the whole month, which is very unlike me and I am behind on reviewing 5 books (which probably won’t get reviewed now but I might do mini ones instead). The books I read (and that I absolutely loved) were:

However, I managed to work on my drawings as well, as I am hoping to open up a website and take commissions soon. So, if any of you are interested in that be sure to drop me a message! Here are the two pieces I worked on, one of which is completed and I gave to my mum for her 50th birthday (she cried):

In terms of my writing, it started off really well in the month and my WIP currently stands at 50,000 words. It is the story of my heart and is so special to me in so many ways. I adore the characters that I have created and I genuinely feel proud of the story, which is something I have never felt before. Then everything went bad and I stalled once I’d reached the major conflict in the novel. However, I started re-reading my work that I’ve written so far to make notes for each chapter (because I have a brain like a sieve) and it’s given me so many ideas to progress the story.

One amazing thing that came out of July is that I found myself an incredible critique partner (CP) called Noelle, and honestly, she is amazing (it just sucks that she lives in Florida). Working through my first five chapters with her has made them 100 times better and she pushes me to work harder because she knows I can do better sometimes. It’s also been incredible to get another persons viewpoint on my story and to hear that it’s amazing and has so much potential is the best thing ever. My confidence as a writer has grown and I truly believe that I could one day publish this book.

I suppose another great thing that happened recently was that I met Tomi Adeyemi, author of Children of Blood and Bone! I won’t talk about that too much as I want to write a blog post on the experience but it was amazing! I’ll just show off one picture of the book that she signed for me and the motivational words she wrote.

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There we have it! Everything that has happened over the last month or so. I just wanted to get all this off my chest and explain to you why I was gone, especially when I didn’t post that I was taking a hiatus. Also, seeing the fact that I have over 350 followers is giving me the motivation to bring you quality content. No, it may not always be book tags and book reviews, there might be the odd post thrown in about my art, my writing and how life is going in general, but that’s what I want this blog to be about.

A great way to also keep up with me is on Twitter (over here) because I am very active there and it’s the perfect place to keep up with my writing and see weekly snippets.

I can’t wait to dive back in the blogging world and catch up with all that I’ve missed!

Review: Ruin and Rising by Leigh Bardugo

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Title: Ruin and Rising (Grishaverse #3)

Author: Leigh Bardugo

Publisher: Henry Holt and Company

Date: 17th June 2014

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I had been waiting to finish this trilogy off since I read Siege and storm a little while ago and it was great to finally do so. Ruin and Rising was everything I wanted it to be, and the ending was perfect for me. It’s always bittersweet to say goodbye to characters, but at least I can carry on reading about the world in Six of Crows and find out more about Nikolai when King of Scars comes out next year (which I am super excited for).  As this is the third in the series there will be spoilers, as I reference events that happened previously.

After the attack in Siege and Storm, Alina and her followers have been pushed underground while the Darkling rules over Ravka. Hiding within a network of tunnels, the Sun Summoner is under the protection of the Apparat and those who worship her, but they do not know that she is broken. Unable to conjure the light, she must wait until her plan to escape takes place. She has to find the firebird, the third and final amplifier, so that she can rise against the Darkling and save Ravka. There is also the matter of finding the outlaw prince, who is said to be causing havoc above ground. A desperate race begins as they all put old rivalries aside to find the one thing that can save them all, but it will come at a cost.

After the second book, which was a little slow in places, I felt that Ruin and Rising set a great pace from the beginning, building with each chapter as we anticipate the final battle between Alina and the Darkling. You could feel the desperation of Alina and her friends, as well as the torment that they endure at the hands of the Darkling. So many lives have been lost throughout the series, and we can see how broken the world is. I’ve always loved the way Bardugo makes the world so vivid, and I think that she is a great writer. Not the best where this series is concerned (I read her collection of tales first) but I have really enjoyed the trilogy, and how each book focuses on finding one of the amplifiers.

There were definitely some unexpected events, mainly to do with Nikolai and the search for the firebird. I love that I never really knew what was going to happen and during the last 50 or so pages, when the battle was taking place, I found myself reading even quicker to find out what would happen. It didn’t disappoint in the slightest and the characters got the ending that they deserved. I also liked the way the Darkling was portrayed in this final instalment and the way we got to see another side of him (but I won’t spoil that for you).

Alina has had quite a bit of development from when we first met her in Shadow and Bone, where she was a lot weaker and didn’t always speak her mind. Now she can’t seem to stop, and while she was harsh in places it was interesting to see how she handled the power that she had. With the fate of Ravka resting on her shoulders, she became obsessed with finding the third amplifier, as anyone would in her position. She has lost a lot during the course of the series and the third book isn’t any different, with a final sacrifice that I wasn’t expecting.

Then we have Mal, a character I grew to dislike very much in the second book, but seemed to do a massive turn around in this book. While he used to be selfish and a bit of an ass, it was great to see him become more caring. It was also interesting to see Mal and Alina trying to mend their strained and slightly broken relationship. Of course, I absolutely love Nikolai, although I didn’t love some of the things that happened to him. The fact that he is getting his own series is the best news ever because I need more of his sass and charm.

The dialogue between the characters is amazing and I feel that is where Bardugo really shines. I always find myself smiling and laughing at the banter between the characters, and Zoya really surprised me as I found myself beginning to like her. And of course, we have Baghra making her appearance with her snarky comments which never fail to make me chuckle. I wished I could’ve gotten to know the other characters more throughout the series, and seen more of their interactions.

Overall, I felt that Ruin and Rising was a great way to end the trilogy, and it has made me so excited to move onto Six of Crows next. I can’t get enough of this world that Leigh Bardugo has created! This is a five star read for me!

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Review: Ace of Shades by Amanda Foody

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Title: Ace of Shades (The Shadow Game #1)

Author: Amanda Foody

Publisher: Harlequin Teen

Date: 10th April 2018

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I am so grateful that I got the chance to read Ace of Shades, and a big thank you to HQ Young Adult for approving me on NetGalley. I was sent the UK edition to review (this cover is the US one) and although I missed reading it before the release date (17th May) it didn’t stop me from really enjoying this book. I flew through this in less than 48 hours, that’s how great this story is.

Enne Salta is poised and proper, having been brought up the right way by her mother to become a lady. The last place she would ever be seen is New Reynes, the City of Sin, but that’s exactly where she needs to go. When she realises that her mother has gone missing, Enne travels to the last place that she visited, unsure of what she will find. There she asks for help from Levi Glaisyer, street lord to one of the three gangs of New Reynes, the Irons. Levi has his own motivations for wanting to help, mainly taking compensation from Enne to dig himself out of some trouble with the mafia. Mysteries begin to unravel as they visit the casinos, cabarets and alleys searching for clues, until they are led to the clutches of the mafia donna. It’s a race against time for both of them and they’ll both need to play their cards right if they’re to get out alive.

When it comes to the writing, I thought it was very well written with a great pace that kept me hooked. I loved the mystery that surrounded the characters, especially Enne, and how we were drip fed bits of information here and there, which kept me hooked and invested in the story. I am a big fan of multiple POVs in books and I really enjoyed how the perspectives switched between Enne and Levi so we got to see more aspects of the world that we wouldn’t have seen otherwise.

The world of New Reynes felt so real thanks to the descriptive writing and I definitely got Las Vegas vibes from it. The casinos and cabarets were described perfectly and I felt as though I was there with the characters, thanks to the colour and imagery. There’s a bit of info-dump in the beginning, but eventually I managed to wrap my head around the way the world works. There are three gangs that rule the streets, the Doves, the Irons and the Scarhands, and then we have the two major crime families; the Augustines and the Torrens. Each gang specialises in something unique that makes them all as deadly as each other.

The fantasy aspect of this book was so interesting. Everybody has an ability of some kind. Some only have one, but most of two with one being secondary to the other. Your surname predicts what your ability is, such as Salta, which means that you have a dancing ability. This features quite a bit in the story and makes up some of the mystery that surrounds the characters as not all is as it seems. There are also talents that are more magical, such as having an affinity for fire or being able to read minds, etc. It’s a very intriguing system that may seem complicated at first, but I can’t wait to see how it develops in the second book.

At first I wasn’t sure about Enne, but when the story got going I found myself being able to connect more with her. She definitely had great character development, especially towards the end, and it was interesting to see how she reacted to everything that was going on around her. Then we have Levi, the gang leader who isn’t anything like I thought he would be, and that’s a good thing! He was incredibly protective of those he cared about and only wanted the best for them, even if he couldn’t give it to them. In the story Levi has gotten himself into some trouble with the Torrens that he is desperate to get out of and we see that desperation grow throughout the story, bringing him down. Another fact about Levi is that he is also bisexual, which is great to see that representation in novels for people like him, and I feel it made him more interesting as a character.

I loved all the mystery that surrounded Enne’s mother, Lourdes, and the way her story unfolded. Even though she wasn’t present in the story, I still had a great idea of who and what she was through the eyes of the other characters. As with every good fantasy story, we have some great villains who are devious and wicked. The head of the Augustine family was particularly nasty with a spiteful nature that rang true. I can’t wait to find out more about these characters, especially a certain one that was introduced right at the very end.

No book is ever perfect and Ace of Shades doesn’t pretend to be. There are some things I would have liked to know more about, but I am hoping they can crop up during the sequel. Overall, I thought that this book was a fun and interesting read, with characters that intrigued me enough that I want to know more. I am going to give this a solid four stars.

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Review: Scythe by Neal Shusterman

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Title: Scythe (Arc of a Scythe #1)

Author: Neal Shusterman

Publisher: Walker Books

Date: 1st February 2018

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I finally did it. I finally found a sci-fi book that I fell head over heels for. I had heard of so many people loving this book, and while I was hesitant at first I decided to give it a try. I don’t read a lot of sci-fi, mainly because I can’t get into it, but from the get go I was hooked by Scythe. It is such a unique book, with an incredible world that feels so similar, yet foreign to us as a reader. There were little references to things we have into our world now, and Shusterman has created characters that I rooted for and that I cared about.

All of the world’s problems have been solved. There is no more hunger and poverty, no war and disease, no more pain and death. The Thunderhead has created a perfect world that is safe for everyone in it. To curb over-population the Scythedom was created, granting Scythes the power to ‘glean’ people. Due to strange circumstances, both Citra and Rowan have been chosen to become scythe apprentices under Honorable Scythe Faraday. Neither wanted this, but now they must master the art of being a Scythe in order to save their lives. For it has been decided that only one can become a fully-fledged Scythe and must glean the other.

I really enjoyed learning about how the Thunderhead came about. It was once the ‘cloud’, which I’m assuming is a reference to software we have now, and it grew to become this all-seeing thing. It has taken control from the governments who are no more, and it protects its citizens, although people are still scared of it. However, the Thunderhead has no control over the Scythedom, which is a really interesting concept given what happens in this novel.

The idea that there is no death is so strange. Of course, accidents do happen but there are revival centres that can bring you back to life. And if you reach the age of 80 and dislike the way you look, you can take a ‘turn’ and go back to being young again. Essentially you could live forever, and it made me wonder what it would be like to live in this world. Honestly, I’m not quite sure I would like it.

Scythe Faraday was a really interesting character, especially with his approach to gleaning. Each scythe has a different technique that they use to glean, and his involves a lot of data and using lots of different weapons. It’s actually quite fascinating how he chooses the people to glean by seeing the statistics of certain deaths in our day and age, then choosing someone who fits into them. He was a really unexpected character that I wish to see more of.

Something that I thought was a great addition to the story was the diary excerpts from infamous Scythes that were before each new chapter. The content in them was often reflected in the story and the people who wrote them eventually feature in the story prominently. I won’t give too much away, but those characters were so intriguing, and I hope I can find out more about them in the sequel.

Then we have Citra and Rowan. The book is mainly in their perspectives, and shows how they handle the circumstances they have been thrust into. Something happens that causes them to drift and from that point on the story is tense because we have no idea what is going to happen. Even towards the end there are plot twists that I didn’t see coming and I loved every one! I think Citra was my favourite, mainly because she was fierce and didn’t take any crap, although I felt sorry for Rowan at some points in the story.

This book is so addictive and I couldn’t get enough of the world. The ending hooked me and I couldn’t order Thunderhead quick enough! On the front cover of my edition, Maggie Stiefvater said that it was a ‘true successor to The Hunger Games’ and I agree with her. I definitely got that kind of vibe so if you enjoyed that series and love dystopian sci-fi worlds, I would recommend reading Scythe. It was so easy to give this book a solid five stars.

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Review: Gathering Darkness by Morgan Rhodes

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Title: Gathering Darkness (Falling Kingdoms #3)

Author: Morgan Rhodes

Publisher: Razorbill

Date: 9th December 2014

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As soon as I finished reading Rebel Spring I dove straight into Gathering Darkness and I have to say that I really enjoyed it. This series has me hooked with how unpredictable it is. Nobody is safe in this story and that is shown with multiple deaths, and characters dying who I thought would be around for a lot longer.

Magic features a lot more in this book and there is more mystery surrounding the kindred, the four magical stones that can restore magic to the Sanctuary, and give power to those that wield them. I can see a lot of the comparisons to Game of Thrones, although I have never read the books and I gave up watching the TV show. This is less bloody deaths, no graphic sex scenes (great for if you’re not into that) and characters who I enjoy reading about. Bear in mind that my review will contain spoilers.

The stakes are higher than ever for the characters in Gathering Darkness as they hurry to find the Kindred. After learning of Princess Lucia’s powers, Princess Cleo and the rebel Jonas team together to use her magic to their advantage and search for the Kindred before Lucia’s father has a chance to take them. But they aren’t the only ones looking for it. Ashur and Amara, the royal siblings from Kraeshia, are also manipulating their way into finding the magical stones and are proving to be more ruthless that they first seemed. Then there are the Watchers, mystical beings who have hunted the Kindred for hundreds of years, and are now setting foot on land and allying with the King. They know that Lucia is they key to finding the Kindred and they will stop at nothing until they have them. Prince Magnus has learned the truth about his family and has been betrayed by those he loves. Now, he has to decide which side to join.

So much happened in this book and although I finished it a few days ago now, I am still thinking about that ending. Unexpected information was revealed about the Kindred that completely changes everything, especially for the next book in the series (which I don’t have yet). I loved the way Lucia used her magic to find the stones and how everything finally made sense, especially with the road and the strange things that happened on it.

There was a lot more action and killing in this book, with some of the deaths very unexpected. You never really know who had good or bad intentions and I love that about it, especially towards the end. The Kraeshians were a welcome mix to the story, changing it up, and there was a lot of betrayal going on. We also see a lot more of Melenia, a Watcher who is hell bent on finding the Kindred for her own reasons, which we find out in this story, as well as the real story of the Goddesses (it was amazing to know the truth). Everything made sense and yet at the same time I still have so many questions!

While I enjoy most of the characters and root for them with all my heart, there are still some I don’t like. I’m all for rebels, but when you are terrible at it (*cough cough* Jonas) it can be a little painful. I can feel myself losing interest in his side of the story and felt he didn’t contribute much in Gathering Darkness. But then there is Cleo and Magnus, two of my favourites in the whole story. Cleo is definitely getting her confidence back and is taking risks to fight for what she wants. She makes some bold moves and takes the lead with the rebels (go her). Then we have Magnus, who does some very unexpected things in this book and by the end I found myself falling for him as a character. I hope that in the next few books he can become the hero we all want him to be.

Lucia is still an enigma and often acts completely crazy, mainly due to her magic, but I think we would all be the same if everyone was trying to use us to find the Kindred. The only person she feels she can trust is the Watcher, Alexius, but even then we find that he has a dark secret of his own. There are a lot of revelations in this book and I can only imagine that there will be more in the next.

Overall, I am still obsessed with this series and I am loving the direction it is taking. There is so much back-stabbing, people changing sides, and secrets that you can’t think straight. This series brings out a lot of emotion in me and I can’t remember the last time I felt this way about one. All I know is that I cannot wait to get my hands on the last three books. 4.5 stars for me on this one!

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Review: Rebel Spring by Morgan Rhodes

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Title: Rebel Spring (Falling Kingdoms #2)

Author: Morgan Rhodes

Publisher: Razorbill

Date: 3rd December 2013

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This series is addictive. It’s been a while since I fell hard for a story and something about this world and these characters has captured my attention. I enjoyed Falling Kingdoms so much that I went straight ahead and bought the second and third (although now that I’ve read them I am regretting not buying the full series).I love Fantasy as a genre and this has the best of everything. Thrilling twists, revenge, romance and a world that seems so real. I only wish that I had read it a lot sooner. Be warned, there will be spoilers for the first book.

Taking place after the events that led to the downfall of Auranos and the death of their King, King Gaius has taken control of all of Mytica, thanks to the magic of Princess Lucia, his adopted daughter. Princess Cleo, the rightful heir to Auranos, is held against her will by the tyrant and forced to show him respect and to recognise him as the ruler. But she is holding out hope that magic could help her to regain the throne, she is just unsure how. Jonas, the fearless rebel, wishes to help Paelsia, his home, and gain power from the King at whatever cost, while Princess Lucia wishes to understand her own power. Then there is Prince Magnus, the King’s son, who yearns to prove his worth to his father and become just like him. Gaius has begun to build a road that will link all of Mytica and end at the Forbidden Mountains, but it is paved with blood and its true meaning kept a secret.

I love how unexpected this series is. You never really know what is going to happen and I love being surprised by what the characters do. I also really like the magical elements to this story and the elementia that Lucia possesses. We find out more about the Watchers in this book, mystical beings who are searching for the Kindred which will restore magic, but only the very powerful sorceress can find.

The plot definitely thickened a lot more in this book, with more secrets and political intrigue. We have the introduction of a few new characters, such as Prince Ashur who is from Kraeshia, a country across the Silver Sea. He was a bit of a mystery but I have a feeling he will feature more later on. We still have the multiple perspectives, which I find great because I love getting to see what everyone is doing and little secrets are given here and there, which is only more frustrating when the other characters are oblivious.

As for characters, I felt even more attached to them and couldn’t help beginning to like some more than I first thought I would (looking at you Magnus) and then there were others who made incredibly stupid mistakes (yep, that’s you Jonas). Lucia was a lot more complicated in this series and took me by surprise with some of the things she did, and it just seems like all that power is going to her head. I see bad things coming in the future. Then there is Cleo, who has had her whole world torn down and is forced to live with the people who did it. I can understand why she wants revenge and I urge her onward because King Gaius is the worst.

While there wasn’t as much action as the first one, as this was way more political, I still enjoyed all that it had to offer and went onto the third one straight away. I enjoy the way that Morgan Rhodes writes because it moves so quickly and I am always on the edge of my seat, waiting for the next unexpected thing to happen. There is a lot of romance and feelings in this book, a love triangle, hate-to-romance kind of thing and in a way I kind of loved it. I just can’t wait to read more about these characters and how their lives become intertwined, more so than they already have.

Overall, I’m going to give this a solid 4 stars.

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Wrapping Up The Week (7th May – 13th May)

This week and the weekend has flown by. Not only was there a bank holiday on the Monday, but I was also off on the Friday as my dad was over for the weekend from Ireland. It was a busy few days and we spent a lot of time outdoors, which was great and I FINALLY got to see Infinity War. Waiting to see it with my dad was torturous and I am still unable to have coherent thoughts about what happened. The fact that we have to wait another year for the next one is killing me.

On the Friday we headed to Belton House, which is located in Grantham, and is a place I hadn’t been to in years. I actually reached my target of 10,000 steps for probably the first time ever as we explored the Victorian mansion, the gardens and surrounding area. It was a lot of fun and here are just a few pictures that I took (also, I aspire to have a library like this one day).

The rest of the weekend was spent in the cinema, going around town and taking my dad out for a belated birthday lunch before he headed home today.

Books I read and reviewed…

As I was spending time with my dad I only managed to write my review for Falling Kingdoms, but I still need to write one for Queen of Shadows and Rebel Spring. I finished both books in the last seven days and boy, were they amazing. Fingers crossed I can get them to you early on in the week if I’m not too busy.

I am currently reading…

gathering darkness

As soon as I finished Rebel Spring I picked up Gathering Shadows and I am loving it. I’m only 40 pages in because I haven’t had much time to read this weekend and I’ve been so tired, but I am hoping to smash another 60 tonight and hopefully read it all before next weekend. This series has me hooked and I just love everything about it. I can’t wait to see how things play out in the third instalment.

Posts from the week…

My TBR For May

Top Two Tuesday: Books With My Favourite Colour on the Cover

WWW Wednesday – So Much Fantasy

Even though it was a busy week, I still managed to get out my minimum of three blog posts, so I’m calling that an accomplishment.

My WIP…

Last week I promised myself that I would start edited again and I didn’t manage to in the end. This week I am telling myself it will be different. Instead, I am going to bring my laptop with me and start doing it on my lunch break again because I am just too tired in the evenings. Fingers crossed this works!

Other Fun Stuff…

Well, I kind of already talking about this in the opening paragraphs, but it was great to see my dad again and spend some time with him. It’s always tough saying goodbye and I feel down for a little while afterwards, but I am always grateful of the time I get to spend with him. It’s tough having a parent living in a different county to you, but I’ve been doing this since I was seven, so I’m pretty used to it (although there were lots of tears when I was younger when the goodbyes happened).

I’ll be seeing him again in a few months time and hopefully I can go over to Ireland again before the year is out.

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And that has been my busy week/weekend! I got quite a bit of reading done when I think about it and I hope the rest of the month can continue that way.

What books did you read this week?

Review: Falling Kingdoms by Morgan Rhodes

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Title: Falling Kingdoms

Author: Morgan Rhodes

Publisher: Razorbill

Date: 11th December 2012

Buy This Book from Book Depository, Free Delivery World Wide

I just have one question…Where has this book been for my whole life? It was incredible. The first thing I did after finishing Falling Kingdoms was to go to Amazon and order the second and third book. I had heard a lot about this series, but it completely blew me away. I finished it in less than 48 hours, that’s how good it is. I loved everything about this book; the characters, the action, the politics, the myths and so much more.

The land of Mytica is made up of three kingdoms, Auranos, Paelsia and Limeros. All have lived peacefully, until now. Auranos is a prosperous land and home to the beloved Princess Cleo, who travelled to Paelsia to retrieve wine with a group of friends. While there the unthinkable happens and she witnesses a murder that begins to threaten the place she calls home. The brother of the man killed, Jonas, has set his mind on revenge and has sworn to destroy Auranos at whatever cost. In the cold and freezing kingdom of Limeros, Prince Magnus yearns to earn his fathers trust, and his sister, Lucia, discovers a secret that will change her life forever. Each ruler wants power and some will stop at nothing to get it.

It isn’t often that I read a book where I feel as if I am one of the characters. The way it was written was so vivid and captivating, I just couldn’t get enough. The world building was incredible and as each chapter changed with the multiple perspectives, I could clearly see where our characters were. I especially loved the scenes where they were on their travels, as well as when all the action was taking place. I was hooked and so invested in the story, always wanting to know what would happen next.

I really enjoyed learning about the myth and lore of magic in Mytica, how some Kingdoms had outlawed it and in others witches were still said to roam. Religion has fallen by the wayside in Auranos, while Limeros has it still integrated into their lives, causing a rift. We learn early on the story of the two Goddesses and what happened to the magic, why it disappeared. Let me tell you, it is very intriguing and mystical.

Third person perspective is one of my favourite ways to read now, mainly because we get to see so much more than first person would, and with four different perspectives, we see a lot. Everything flowed nicely and it didn’t feel disjointed at all. I could easily keep up with the story and follow what was happening, even if I hadn’t read a scene from one of the characters in a few chapters. Each character had a different voice and style that made them easy to differentiate and it was one of my favourite things about this book.

The characters are full of life and so unique. Cleo goes through a tough time in this book, but she tries her best to rise above it all, even as her heart is breaking. When it comes to rebels, Jonas plays the role perfectly and I loved his scenes, especially with Cleo and their arguing. Magnus…he’s a confusing one for me because he’s so conflicted. I want to root for him and for him to be good, despite how awful his father is. I feel like I know more about the other characters than Lucia, but I have an inkling that she is going to feature more in the following books.

As soon as you start reading Falling Kingdoms you are thrown into the action and there is no stopping from there. I honestly feel that this is going to become one of my favourite series and I’m only just getting started! Everything about this book was perfect. At just over 400 pages it was the perfect length (in fact, I ended up wanting more) and the end left me wanting more. This is easily a five star read and I just know that it is only going to get better.

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