Book Review – Sky in the Deep by Adrienne Young

Thank you, Netgalley and Wednesday Books, for the opportunity to read and review this book. My views are entirely my own.

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I cannot gush over this book enough! Sky in the Deep is breathless, vivid, and badass, with a heroine you’ll at once want to scream at and for. Debut Adrienne Young has created a book you’ll never want to leave, with characters you’ll instantly love.

Step into a Viking-inspired world, fully-realized and beautiful, heart breaking and wonderful. Here, Eelyn is a young woman of war, having spent her entire life fighting with and for her people, having felt the sharp pain of war and has emerged the most hardened warrior. After years of honing her body into a weapon, her heart and mind into unforgiving stone, Eelyn mirrors the unyielding surroundings and people of Aska. But her world is turned upside down when she discovers her brother – a brother she watched die on the battlefield – fighting alongside her enemies, the ruthless Riki.

The writing in this debut is beautiful and confident, the characters fully realized and unique. Young has proved herself a confident and adept writer, and has easily become one of my must-buy authors. Fans of Renee Ahdieh’s lushly painted world in The Wrath and the Dawn and the badass, self-sufficient heroine of Marie Rutkoski’s Winner’s Series will love this book!

https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/1955887791

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Book Review – Unearthed by Meagan Spooner and Amie Kaufman

Thank you, Netgalley, for the opportunity to read and review this book. My views are entirely my own.

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Where do I start?

This was a wild ride of a book. Comparisons to “Lara Croft and Indiana Jones in space” (though I would also add a bit of Doctor Who and Arrival) are spot on, the two main characters are pretty much teenage versions of Lara and Indy, and I fell absolutely in love with both of them. Their chemistry was off the charts, their depths endless. I’m curious how Spooner and Kaufman wrote this one. Did they each pick a character and write their own chapters? Or did they alternate? Because they really did a great job varying the two characters, creating fully-realized teenagers on an adventure in space.

Each chapter twists and turns, leading you on the adventure so that you feel like you’re actually riding deeper and deeper into Gaia (the mysterious planet Jules and Mia are exploring), creating the effect of a narrow tunnel, the walls closing tighter and tighter around you as you barrel towards the light at the end. The world-building is astounding, so meticulously crafted, the history woven together in a way that is both realistic and deliciously sci-fi.

Overall, I recommend this to anyone who claims to love sci-fi, and fans of the Da Vinci Code, need to pick up this book! It won’t disappoint!

Book Review – Warcross by Marie Lu

Hey friends! I know, I’m terrible about posting on a regular basis, but I’ve got a special review for you guys today!

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I was recently lucky enough to get ahold of an arc of Warcross by the wonderful Marie Lu! Consider me blessed by the book gods!

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And where do I start? This book was everything I wanted and more! Lu’s storytelling ability grows with each book, and Warcross did not disappoint. Everything from the intricately painted setting, filled with flourishes of color and rich with detail, to the engaging characters, fully-realized and just as vibrant as their setting, Lu’s Warcross is painstakingly brought to life.

Our heroine, the brilliant Emika Chen, is both a hacker and a bounty hunter. When she accidentally hacks her way into the biggest game of the century, a virtual reality competition called Warcross, she catches the eye of its creator, the enigmatic and mysterious Hideo Tanaka. Assigned by Hideo to complete a bounty hunt in the game, Emika brings the reader along a whirlwind adventure.

I adore each and every one of the characters, from brilliant Hammie to the mysterious Ren. The games will enthrall and dazzle you like a carnival ride you never want to get off of. Lu also excels at crafting yet another excellent plot twist, one that will make you fall from your seat.

With stakes and games akin to The Hunger Games, and a wonderfully diverse cast, Warcross is a delight in every way. I recommend it to everyone! Also, can I have the sequel RIGHT NOW?!

Book Review – The Belles by Dhonielle Clayton

Thank you Disney Book Group and Netgalley for the opportunity to read and review this book. My views are entirely my own.

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Sumptuous, lovely and evocative, The Belles is the kind of novel that begs you to dig in like a midnight snack. With careful strokes of her pen, debut Dhonielle Clayton has created a world both dangerous and beautiful, intriguing and daring. Our MC, a wide-eyed, courageous ‘Belle’ named Camellia dives right into the world of Orleans, where beauty is bought and prized above all else, and discovers secrets in the cities depths.

Fans of Roshani Chokshi and Victoria Aveyard will love the stunning writing and brilliantly crafted world Clayton has created.

https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/2014436798

Book Review – Gray Wolf Island by Tracey Neithercott

Thank you, Netgalley and Random House, for the opportunity to read this book. My views are entirely my own.

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Let me just start this review by saying that I LOVED EVERYTHING ABOUT THIS BOOK! My favorite read of 2017 so far, Tracey Neithercott’s stunning debut was everything I wished for.
I can’t share much of the plot without spoiling any of Neithercott’s carefully threaded story, but I will share the basics. MC Ruby leads a motley assortment of characters (each a mystery all their own) on an adventure across the Gray Wolf Island, in search of treasure. Right from the start, Neithercott proves she’s willing to make sacrifices and tug on your heartstrings, which sets the tone for the entire book – will all of our heroes finish this adventure with their lives? Fantastic writing, fleshed-out, lovable characters, adventure, mystery and suspense, Neithercott does a fantastic job weaving together all the pieces for a breathtaking journey. I could rant on and on about the beautiful prose, the nostalgia inducing adventure (a la The Goonies), or the collection of swoon-worthy book boyfriends.
Gray Wolf Island’s MC, Ruby, is fantastic, her cast of supporting characters so wonderful that they reach from the pages and drag you on the adventure with them each step of the way, brought further to life by Neithercott’s remarkable writing (See? I told you I could go on and on about the writing). Not only are the characters fleshed-out, as is the setting, Gray Wolf Island a character in itself, an enigma, a piece of land waiting to be conquered by Ruby and her friends, taunting her in that spit of sea.
Fans of Maggie Stiefvater and Laini Taylor will absolutely love the whimsical, lyrical writing, and unique settings and characters! If you loved Stiefvater’s The Scorpio Races, or Taylor’s Strange the Dreamer, don’t pass up this book!

 

Book Review – Daughter of the Burning City by Amanda Foody

Thank you Netgalley for the chance to read this book. My views are entirely my own.

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For a debut, Foody wields the power of the pen with expertise. The writing is succinct and clever, the world beautifully crafted and explored, and the characters are engaging and witty. I felt swept up by the world and accepted by Sorina’s family. What more could a reader ask for?

Gomorrah, the festival of wonders, full of twists and turns, adventure and charm. Foody manages to paint this living, ever-expanding, always-moving city beautifully, Gomorrah coming to life upon the pages. If Gomorrah were real, I would want to lose myself within its wonders almost immediately. The city teems with mystery and political intrigue, magic and mythology.

Through the adventures of our MC Sorina, we uncover the mysteries of Gomorrah. Sorina is an able, unique MC, equal parts tenacity and bravery, wit and creative. Sorina is an entirely unique character in the world of YA, for many reasons, including her unique appearance (lack of eyes). Sorina’s cast of creations, also her family, are equally fleshed out. For fabrications, the mystery of their demise is still heart-wrenching because of Foody’s clever writing.

Overall, fans of Stephanie Garber’s Caraval and Laini Taylor’s Daughter of Smoke and Bone are sure to love this book and the world Foody has created. I can only hope that Foody continues to explore Gomorrah, a world ripe with mystery and adventure.

https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/1764222929

Book Review! A Poison Dark and Drowning by Jessica Cluess

Wow, I really hit the jackpot on ARCs this month! I feel so blessed by the book gods!

Thank you, Jessica Cluess, for sending me a copy of this book! My opinions are entirely my own.

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I was lucky enough to receive a beautiful signed ARC of this masterpiece.

I looooooooved A Shadow Bright and Burning, but A Poison Dark and Drowning blew me away. The stakes were raised, the characters grew, the twists were endless and the action was gripping! Cluess knocked it out of the park as far as sequels go. It’s very rare for me to enjoy a sequel as much, let alone MORE than the original, but Cluess managed with grace and verve.

Under Cluess’s able pen, the magical cast of characters grew and unfurled, each with their own arcs. I love Henrietta’s growth, and I especially love that Henrietta is able to maintain her agency throughout the book, despite many swoony overtures thrown her way and more than a handful of heartbreaking twists. The old characters will continue to surprise and adore you, the new will enthrall you! I especially love the addition of a certain spunky witch and the friendship that blossoms between her and Henrietta. I’m a sucker for books with positive, healthy friendships, and this book sure didn’t disappoint.

Overall, this book is twisty and action-packed, swoon-worthy and romantic. I definitely recommend this beauty to fans of the historical fantasy in The Dark Days Club, the swoony romance of Caraval, and the gripping action and determined heroine of Rebel of the Sands. Pre-order yourself a copy of this masterpiece NOW!