Book Reviews

Kingdom of Ash-Book Review(No Spoilers)

Author: Sarah J. Maas

Series: Throne of Glass #7

Rating: 3.5/5 Stars

Summary of Book One: “After serving out a year of hard labor in the salt mines of Endovier for her crimes, 18-year-old assassin Celaena Sardothien is dragged before the Crown Prince. Prince Dorian offers her her freedom on one condition: she must act as his champion in a competition to find a new royal assassin.

Her opponents are men-thieves and assassins and warriors from across the empire, each sponsored by a member of the king’s council. If she beats her opponents in a series of eliminations, she’ll serve the kingdom for four years and then be granted her freedom. Celaena finds her training sessions with the captain of the guard, Westfall, challenging and exhilarating. But she’s bored stiff by court life. Things get a little more interesting when the prince starts to show interest in her … but it’s the gruff Captain Westfall who seems to understand her best.

Then one of the other contestants turns up dead … quickly followed by another. Can Celaena figure out who the killer is before she becomes a victim? As the young assassin investigates, her search leads her to discover a greater destiny than she could possibly have imagined.” -From Goodreads

Review: This wasn’t bad in anyway, though that being said it was disappointed in some way to me.

I will say the ending to A Court of Wings and Ruin felt convenient, so I was hoping their would be more stacks in this one compared to that one. There were, but I was hoping for more.

Things that were being lead up to felt easily resolved. The fate of characters did give me feels more than in ACOWAR, but I was hoping for more when it came to certain characters. The ending wrapped things up nicely. There wasn’t anything that felt like it still needed to be answered.

When it came to the characters, the parts with Celaena made my heart hurt and I was happy with how her story moved through out this book. I was happy with the other characters too, none of them completely annoyed me. The only time I ever had any of the characters annoy me or made me roll my eyes was when a certain character thought something when they did something. Besides that, the characters were enjoyable.

This ending does feel like a step up from ACOWAR, but not by much. I did enjoy reading this last book as I was wanting to know what would happen to Celaena in the end, even though she has annoyed me in other books, as well as Chaol, Manon, and other characters. I just think it could have been better.

If you have read all of the Throne of Glass books up this book, then I would read it so you can know what happens because it does feel nice to know how it ends. Just remember it is close to a thousand pages.

Have fun reading!

Book Reviews

Crazy Rich Asians-Book Review(No spoilers)

Author: Kevin Kwan

Series: Crazy Rich Asians #1

Rating: 4.5/5 Stars

Summary: “When New Yorker Rachel Chu agrees to spend the summer in Singapore with her boyfriend, Nicholas Young, she envisions a humble family home and quality time with the man she hopes to marry. But Nick has failed to give his girlfriend a few key details. One, that his childhood home looks like a palace; two, that he grew up riding in more private planes than cars; and three, that he just happens to be the country’s most eligible bachelor.

On Nick’s arm, Rachel may as well have a target on her back the second she steps off the plane, and soon, her relaxed vacation turns into an obstacle course of old money, new money, nosy relatives, and scheming social climbers.” -From Goodreads

Review: I’m not one to read contemporary books unless their story interests me. With this book, it was after seeing the movie did I decide to give this book a read.

I enjoyed the characters and the setting the author created. While reading I found myself never not liking some of the characters by the end because I saw that they were not happy with what they had done and have room to grow in the next two books. At times I did get furious with Nick mostly since some situations could have been avoided if he just talked to Rachel about his family and maybe a bit about things in his past. I especially loved both Rachel and Astrid. Can’t wait to see what happens to them in the next book.

Now, I did enjoy Kevin Kwan writing at times. He did a great job with making characters come off the page and writing scenes that had emotion.

Both the book and the movie have their differences, but they are enjoyable.

I highly recommend reading this book if you enjoy contemporary or looking for something different.

Have fun reading!!

Book Reviews

Blood of Elves-Book Review(No Spoilers)

Author: Andrzej Sapkowski

Series: The Witcher #1

Rating: 4/5 Stars

Summary: “The New York Times bestselling series that inspired the international hit video game: The Witcher.
For over a century, humans, dwarves, gnomes, and elves have lived together in relative peace. But times have changed, the uneasy peace is over, and now the races are fighting once again. The only good elf, it seems, is a dead elf.

Geralt of Rivia, the cunning assassin known as The Witcher, has been waiting for the birth of a prophesied child. This child has the power to change the world – for good, or for evil.

As the threat of war hangs over the land and the child is hunted for her extraordinary powers, it will become Geralt’s responsibility to protect them all – and the Witcher never accepts defeat.

The Witcher returns in this sequel to The Last Wish, as the inhabitants of his world become embroiled in a state of total war.” -From Goodreads

Review: I have slowly been enjoying these books. I also enjoy that these books don’t need to be read in order to play the games, which means I can enjoy both at any time.

Blood of Elves was very slow because it was trying to build up what is going to happen in the next book. Which was fine but it did make it hard to keep reading at times.

Besides that, I did enjoy going back into this world. I loved getting to read about characters I remember from playing the video game(Witcher 3) and seeing what they were up to. I loved that we were never in one character’s head, but in many.

The world in this book feels a lot bigger than it did in the Last Wish. There was a lot more world building, as well as getting no more about who lives in this world. It feels more unique and stood out from all the other fantasy books I have read before.

While there isn’t much character growth because of this being a book that is setting things up, it does set up the characters up and gives you enough background on them.  The author did a great job of not giving too much. Just enough to show that they will grow within the next book.

If you enjoyed the Last Wish or the video games, then I highly recommend reading these books. These are also great for people who enjoy adult fantasy.

Have fun reading!!

Book Reviews

A Reaper At The Gates-Book Review(No Spoilers)

Author: Sabaa Tahir

Series: An Ember In The Ashes #3

Rating: 5/5 Stars

Summary of Book One: “Laia is a slave. Elias is a soldier. Neither is free.

Under the Martial Empire, defiance is met with death. Those who do not vow their blood and bodies to the Emperor risk the execution of their loved ones and the destruction of all they hold dear.

It is in this brutal world, inspired by ancient Rome, that Laia lives with her grandparents and older brother. The family ekes out an existence in the Empire’s impoverished backstreets. They do not challenge the Empire. They’ve seen what happens to those who do.

But when Laia’s brother is arrested for treason, Laia is forced to make a decision. In exchange for help from rebels who promise to rescue her brother, she will risk her life to spy for them from within the Empire’s greatest military academy.

There, Laia meets Elias, the school’s finest soldier—and secretly, its most unwilling. Elias wants only to be free of the tyranny he’s being trained to enforce. He and Laia will soon realize that their destinies are intertwined—and that their choices will change the fate of the Empire itself.” -From Goodreads

Review: This third book was worth the wait and lived up to what I wanted it to be.

Like in book two, there are three perspectives as the characters are at different places, though sometimes come together. Sabaa wrote each perspective well. She was also able to give each character their own voice without them sounding similar to each other.

The characters throughout this book did grow and were still interesting to read about. It was nice getting to see what each one was up to because they weren’t always together all the time. The romance between characters felt natural, not rushed or just put in there for no reason. This goes for both romantic love and nonromantic love.

This third book brought than it did in the second book. The world felt bigger. Stakes felt higher. The writing was still great. This book overall was not disappointing for me.

If you didn’t enjoy book two, then I highly recommend giving this third book a try. Definitely if you enjoyed book two, read book three.

Have fun reading!!

Book Reviews

Catwoman Soulstealer-Book Review(No Spoilers)

Author: Sarah J Maas

Series: DC Icons #3

Rating: 3/5 Stars

Summary: “When the Bat’s away, the Cat will play. It’s time to see how many lives this cat really has. . . .

Two years after escaping Gotham City’s slums, Selina Kyle returns as the mysterious and wealthy Holly Vanderhees. She quickly discovers that with Batman off on a vital mission, Batwing is left to hold back the tide of notorious criminals. Gotham City is ripe for the taking.

Meanwhile, Luke Fox wants to prove he has what it takes to help people in his role as Batwing. He targets a new thief on the prowl who seems cleverer than most. She has teamed up with Poison Ivy and Harley Quinn, and together they are wreaking havoc. This Catwoman may be Batwing’s undoing.” -from Goodreads

Review: At first I was unsure if I was going to read this book because I read A Court of Frost and Starlight back in May and didn’t enjoy it. Though I decided to give this one a chance.

While I did somewhat enjoy this book, I was also disappointed.

The Catwoman in this book was totally different than the one found in the comics. If anything this Selina Kyle felt like Celena in a way more than the character she was supposed to be. I did enjoy Selina in a way. More when she was Catwoman rather than as Holly Vanderhees.

Luke Fox I found interesting. I have never heard of his character before or of Batwing, so it made me curious to know more about his character. I liked reading about him and Catwoman interacting with each other, especially the dialogue.

As for the other Batman characters used, Sarah J Maas, in my opinion, didn’t seem to use them like they are portrayed in the comics, meaning that their personalities switched like with Poison Ivy. I understand that comic book characters can somewhat change but they usually do stay the same. It’s just their character arcs change and maybe their backstory.

The main romance in this book felt like it didn’t need to happen. By the end of the book, I was questioning why there was a romance it didn’t go much on anywhere.

Sarah’s writing felt very similar to her other books. It was still addictive and fast pace. The only I wished for was that the writing was like that in A Court of Mist and Fury and Tower of Dawn.

This book isn’t all that bad. I did enjoy getting to read about Gotham, Catwoman, and other characters. It was a quick read. One that I might reread at some point. It also makes me want to read the Batman book that came out before this one.

If you enjoyed the Wonder Woman book and the Batman book, then you should try this one out. Especially if you loved her other books.

Have fun reading!!

Writing

Writing Tip #5-Be Proud Of The Genre You Write In

When I started my creative writing major, I kind of knew that not every teacher I had would enjoy fantasy, but I never thought they would not except it for page count(In my college, all students had to make to 60 pages total for a class in order to basically pass the class). One of my teachers had actually told me that he wouldn’t accept my piece because it had the word sword in the beginning and fantasy wasn’t his genre.

Now hearing that hurt and I had started crying in front of him because I already felt like I was failing his class. I had started to rethink my writing, believing that maybe what I was writing wasn’t good enough.

I wasn’t mad at him for not liking fantasy since people do like certain genres and not others. I was just upset because he wouldn’t accept it for page count for the genre I wrote it in.

The reason I’m typing all of that down was that it taught me something. That was to be proud of the genre I wrote in, which was, and still is, fantasy. That I also don’t need to please people like him who don’t like fantasy. My boyfriend would tell me how that teacher wasn’t my audience, and my audience was people who enjoy fantasy.

Never change the genre you write in. Just because of someone scuffs at your or thinkings differently of you or comments in almost a negative way, don’t like lowly about the genre you love to write stories in.

Think about the audience that loves the genre and would love to read your stories. It’s those people you want to think about while writing. Not those other people. I understand the wanting of making everyone happy, but at some point, you need to make yourself happy with your work and understand you can’t make everyone happy.

Be proud of the genre you write in. Be proud of the stories you start, the stories that you finish, and the stories that you just get ideas for.

Be proud of yourself!

Book Reviews

Darkened Light-Book Review(No Spoilers)

Author: Sarina Langer

Series: Darkened Light #1

Rating: 5/5 Stars

Summary: “The death goddess Ithrean has led the dead to their rest and watched over them in Dunhă for centuries, but they are no longer at peace. Their souls turn the red grass black, and their corruption seeps into the world of the living.

Naavah Ora is an elven mage who can enter Dunhă at will, and study its corruption like no one else can.

Doran is a runaway thief who cares about nothing as much as the next treasure, even if it puts his own life in danger.

840 is the only male sacrifice in his village, longing for a chance to live.

Ash is a troublemaker who is learning that he can’t burn his way through every obstacle.

To halt the coming darkness, they need to work together.

It’s too bad they are too different to get along.” -From Goodreads

Review: This is the first book I have read a book by Sarina Langer, who has self-published two other books that I’m interested in as well, and I was not disappointed.

Sarina wrote an interesting fantasy world that has both an amazing story and characters you care about. She made each chapter, that was told by four different characters perspectives, feel important and gave the characters development through each one. Sarina delivers a fantasy novel that is both familiar and different.

Each of the four main characters were interesting, as well as I never disliked any of them. I was always wanting to know more about them and keep reading about them. They each are different from each other, which makes it really cool when they are all together.

If you enjoy fantasy and the summary interests you, then definitely pick this novel up. I definitely will pick up the sequel when it comes out and read her other books.

Have fun reading!!

I was given an ARC in exchange for an honest review.

Book Reviews

A Study In Charlotte-Book Review(No Spoilers)

Author: Brittany Cavallaro

Series: Charlotte Holmes #1

Rating: 5/5 Stars

Summary: “The last thing Jamie Watson wants is a rugby scholarship to Sherringford, a Connecticut prep school just an hour away from his estranged father. But that’s not the only complication: Sherringford is also home to Charlotte Holmes, the famous detective’s great-great-great-granddaughter, who has inherited not only Sherlock’s genius but also his volatile temperament. From everything Jamie has heard about Charlotte, it seems safer to admire her from afar.

From the moment they meet, there’s a tense energy between them, and they seem more destined to be rivals than anything else. But when a Sherringford student dies under suspicious circumstances, ripped straight from the most terrifying of the Sherlock Holmes stories, Jamie can no longer afford to keep his distance. Jamie and Charlotte are being framed for murder, and only Charlotte can clear their names. But danger is mounting and nowhere is safe—and the only people they can trust are each other.” -From Goodreads

Review: I picked this book up because I heard many good things about it. Those people were right about this book. At first, I didn’t think that I would enjoy it as much, but I very much did.

Brittany Cavallaro wrote a story that kept my attention the entire time. It was hard to put down and not continue reading because of the mystery being interesting and me wanting to know who did it. Her writing really brought the characters to life, as well as the setting and the mystery itself.

I enjoyed reading about Jamie Watson and Charlotte Holmes. It was nice to see their relationship grow throughout the book. How they interacted with each other remind of the how Sherlock and Watson were in the show, Sherlock. It was also fun to see who was who in this story. I very much enjoyed all of the characters written in this story. It was fun getting to solve the mystery with the two main characters.

This book was a fun read and I can’t wait to read the next book in this series to see where the story goes.

If you would like to read a fun mystery with interesting characters, then definitely give this one a try.

Have fun reading!!

Book Reviews

Legendary-Book Review(No Spoilers)

Author: Stephanie Garber

Series: Caraval #2

Rating: 4/5 stars

Summary of Book One: “Remember, it’s only a game…

Scarlett Dragna has never left the tiny island where she and her sister, Tella, live with their powerful, and cruel, father. Now Scarlett’s father has arranged a marriage for her, and Scarlett thinks her dreams of seeing Caraval—the faraway, once-a-year performance where the audience participates in the show—are over.

But this year, Scarlett’s long-dreamt-of invitation finally arrives. With the help of a mysterious sailor, Tella whisks Scarlett away to the show. Only, as soon as they arrive, Tella is kidnapped by Caraval’s mastermind organizer, Legend. It turns out that this season’s Caraval revolves around Tella, and whoever finds her first is the winner.

Scarlett has been told that everything that happens during Caraval is only an elaborate performance. Nevertheless she becomes enmeshed in a game of love, heartbreak, and magic. And whether Caraval is real or not, Scarlett must find Tella before the five nights of the game are over or a dangerous domino effect of consequences will be set off, and her beloved sister will disappear forever.

Welcome, welcome to Caraval…beware of getting swept too far away.” –From Goodreads

Review: I was so excited about this book because I loved the first one. Though I was slightly disappointed in this sequel.

What I found Legendary enjoyable, as well as catching up with the characters and getting to read about another round of Caraval being played.

This book follows the sister Tella in her point of view and her playing Caraval. At times I enjoyed reading about Tella. I loved how sassy she could be, how stood up for herself, and she was smart at times when playing the game. Though there were times when she made stupid decisions. I’m not saying that it was bad, but she would praise herself for being smart though would make a not so smart decision. Scarlett didn’t seem like the same Scarlett from the first book. The lack of communication between couples was annoying. I liked that we got to know more about the world and Legend in this story.

Stephanie Garber’s writing was easy to read. She hooked me in right away and knows how to write. She does know how to make characters interesting even if they can be annoying at times.

This book brought more life to the world she had already created, as well as the original characters and new ones.

If you enjoyed the first book, then definitely read this one. Just don’t go into it with any expectations.

Have fun reading!

Book Reviews

Be Your Own # Goals-Book Review(No Spoilers)

Author: Kristen Martain

Rating: 4/5 Stars

Summary: “We’ve all played the comparison game at one point or another. But instead of striving to be like everyone else, why not try to be your own #GOALS?

In this refreshing, yet straightforward, guide, bestselling author, writing coach, and personal development junkie, Kristen Martin, puts her personal and professional learning experiences on display for your benefit. Concise, witty, and relatable chapters and exercises make for an engaging and easy read, ultimately helping you to:

* Discover and defeat your fear-based thoughts, self-limiting beliefs, and self-sabotaging behaviors

* Overcome toxic energy, relationships, and situations that have been holding you back up until this point

* Evolve into the person you were destined to become and live the amazing life you’ve always dreamed of

If you’re ready to get out of your own head, stop playing the comparison game, reclaim your self-worth, and walk in your truth every single day from this moment forward . . . this book was written for you.” -From Goodreads

Review: When I had first started to read this book, I was hoping that it would kick my but into gear to continue writing as I worked at a job, which it did, but there were somethings that I didn’t agree with.

A lot of what Kristen wrote in this book was helpful and uplifting. I’ve been having a lot of self-doubts and just putting other people first, so reading this book helped me to positive about myself and to also put myself first. Hearing her life story, as well as seeing how she got to the point where she is now, was inspiring.

What I found slightly disappointing was that some of what is in this book is on her podcast, so some stuff isn’t new. Another thing that kind of rubbed me to wrong way was her basically saying how you could quit your job at any time to continue your dream, which I get is what most people would love to do, but not a lot of people have the luxury to just quit their job and do what they love for a living. I would love to just write for a living, but I know that won’t happen for some time.

This was a quick read with some nice exercises for people to do at the end of each chapter. The exercises are helpful to do in a journal, which helps to get more out of this book that isn’t just you reading it.

If you want a self-help book that will kick your butt into gear and/or want to help you be more positive with both yourself and your work, then read this self-help book.

Have fun reading!