Review: BLOODWITCH by Susan Dennard


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28114396
BLOODWITCH
Susan Dennard

SeriesThe Witchlands #3
Genre: Young Adult, Fantasy
Publisher: Tor Teen
Pages: 464
Publication date: February 12, 2019

High in a snowy mountain range, a monastery that holds more than just faith clings to the side of a cliff. Below, thwarted by a lake, a bloodthirsty horde of raiders await the coming of winter and the frozen path to destroy the sanctuary and its secrets.

The Bloodwitch Aeduan has teamed up with the Threadwitch Iseult and the magical girl Owl to stop the destruction. But to do so, he must confront his own father, and his past.


For Lady Fate makes all men choose eventually. Even Bloodwitches.


Aeduan: *exists*

Me: wow I love him

So it took me over two years to finally pick up Bloodwitch (I was very much afraid it was going to disappoint me), but here we are! I’m very happy to report I had a lot of fun reading this and enjoyed the story immensely. I remembered quite a bit of what had happened in the previous novels and who the characters were/what they did, so it was easy for me to immerse myself into this universe again. Continue reading

WWW Wednesday: Read, Reading, Will Read (186)

wwwwed

Welcome to WWW Wednesday, a meme currently being hosted by Sam @ Taking On A World of Words. It’s a place for you to do a little update on what your reading plans are.

The Three W’s are:

  • What are you currently reading?
  • What did you recently finish reading?
  • What do you think you’ll read next?

What are you currently reading?

1. Last Guard by Nalini Singh

Paranormal Romance! I’m stil at the beginning of this, but I am very intrigued by how the world-building keeps expanding and we’ve already been given so many new details regarding the PsyNet and how it works. I’m so looking forward to the possibilities this book will open up and have high expectations for it.


What did you recently finish reading?

    1. Beren and Lúthien by J.R.R. Tolkien: Fantasy! Really liked the story, but this was difficult to read.
    2. The Betrayal by R.L. Stine: Horror! Pretty cool bundle of the origins of Fear Street.
    3. Um Milhão de Finais Felizes by Vitor Martins: LGBTQIA+ Romance! This was so cuuuuuute!
    4. Howl’s Moving Castle by Diana Wynne Jones: Fantasy! As good as I expected it to be 😀
    5. The Prison Healer by Lynette Noni: Fantasy! Wonderful writing and super engrossing plot.

What do you think you’ll read next?

I’ll be on winter break this time next week, so I have no idea what I’m going to end up reading next. There are so many options!


What books did you recently finish reading? What do you plan on reading next?
Tell me in the comments!


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Top 10 Tuesday: Books I Read In One Sitting

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Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl. This week’s theme is: Books I Read In One Sitting.

31145148Winter’s Orbit by Everina Maxwell


While the Iskat Empire has long dominated the system through treaties and political alliances, several planets, including Thea, have begun to chafe under Iskat’s rule. When tragedy befalls Imperial Prince Taam, his Thean widower, Jainan, is rushed into an arranged marriage with Taam’s cousin, the disreputable Kiem, in a bid to keep the rising hostilities between the two worlds under control.

22840421Monday’s Not Coming by Tiffany D. Jackson


Monday Charles is missing, and only Claudia seems to notice. Claudia and Monday have always been inseparable—more sisters than friends. So when Monday doesn’t turn up for the first day of school, Claudia’s worried. When she doesn’t show for the second day, or second week, Claudia knows that something is wrong. Monday wouldn’t just leave her to endure tests and bullies alone. Not after last year’s rumors and not with her grades on the line. Now Claudia needs her best—and only—friend more than ever. But Monday’s mother refuses to give Claudia a straight answer, and Monday’s sister April is even less help.

30233110All Rhodes Lead Here by Mariana Zapata


Losing people you love is hard. Aurora De La Torre knows moving back to a place that was once home isn’t going to be easy. Starting your whole life over probably isn’t supposed to be. But a small town in the mountains might be the perfect remedy for a broken heart. Checking out her landlord across the driveway just might cure it too.

18189606House of Hollow by Krystal Sutherland


Seventeen-year-old Iris Hollow has always been strange. Something happened to her and her two older sisters when they were children, something they can’t quite remember but that left each of them with an identical half-moon scar at the base of their throats. Iris has spent most of her teenage years trying to avoid the weirdness that sticks to her like tar. But when her eldest sister, Grey, goes missing under suspicious circumstances, Iris learns just how weird her life can get: horned men start shadowing her, a corpse falls out of her sister’s ceiling, and ugly, impossible memories start to twist their way to the forefront of her mind.

27883214The Last Watch by J.S. Dewes


The Divide. It’s the edge of the universe. Now it’s collapsing—and taking everyone and everything with it. The only ones who can stop it are the Sentinels—the recruits, exiles, and court-martialed dregs of the military. At the Divide, Adequin Rake, commanding the Argus, has no resources, no comms—nothing, except for the soldiers that no one wanted. They’re humanity’s only chance.

23299512Sawkill Girls by Claire Legrand


Who are the Sawkill Girls? Marion: the new girl. Awkward and plain, steady and dependable. Weighed down by tragedy and hungry for love she’s sure she’ll never find. Zoey: the pariah. Luckless and lonely, hurting but hiding it. Aching with grief and dreaming of vanished girls. Maybe she’s broken—or maybe everyone else is. Val: the queen bee. Gorgeous and privileged, ruthless and regal. Words like silk and eyes like knives, a heart made of secrets and a mouth full of lies. Their stories come together on the island of Sawkill Rock, where gleaming horses graze in rolling pastures and cold waves crash against black cliffs. Where kids whisper the legend of an insidious monster at parties and around campfires.

24485589Ace of Spades by Faridah Àbíké-Íyímídé


Welcome to Niveus Private Academy, where money paves the hallways, and the students are never less than perfect. Until now. Because anonymous texter, Aces, is bringing two students’ dark secrets to light. Talented musician Devon buries himself in rehearsals, but he can’t escape the spotlight when his private photos go public. Head girl Chiamaka isn’t afraid to get what she wants, but soon everyone will know the price she has paid for power. Someone is out to get them both. Someone who holds all the aces. And they’re planning much more than a high-school game…

23592235Malibu Rising by Taylor Jenkins Reid


Malibu: August, 1983. It’s the day of Nina Riva’s annual end-of-summer party, and anticipation is at a fever pitch. Everyone wants to be around the famous Rivas: Nina, the talented surfer and supermodel; brothers Jay and Hud, one a championship surfer, the other a renowned photographer; and their adored baby sister, Kit. Together, the siblings are a source of fascination in Malibu and the world over—especially as the offspring of the legendary singer, Mick Riva.

30095464We Hunt the Flame by Hafsah Faizal


Zafira is the Hunter, disguising herself as a man when she braves the cursed forest of the Arz to feed her people. Nasir is the Prince of Death, assassinating those foolish enough to defy his autocratic father, the sultan. If Zafira was exposed as a girl, all of her achievements would be rejected; if Nasir displayed his compassion, his father would punish him in the most brutal of ways. Both Zafira and Nasir are legends in the kingdom of Arawiya–but neither wants to be.

25733660All My Darkest Impulses by Lisa Unger


For disgraced professor Matthew Merle, the inheritance of his grandfather’s crumbling mansion is both a burden and an offer of safe haven. His childhood friend Claire, a psychiatrist, desperately needs a haven of her own after one of her patients unleashes his dark side. At turning points in their lives, it’s inevitable that they should return to the past. And to Merle House. It’s been waiting for them.


What are some books you read in one sitting? Any recommendations for me?
Let me know in the comments!


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Review: CROWNCHASERS by Rebecca Coffindaffer


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28114396
CROWNCHASERS
Rebecca Coffindaffer

SeriesCrownchasers #1
Genre: Science Fiction
Publisher: HarperTeen
Pages: 375
Publication date: September 29, 2020

Alyssa Farshot has spent her whole life trying to outrun her family legacy. Her mother sacrificed everything to bring peace to the quadrant, and her uncle has successfully ruled as emperor for decades. But the last thing Alyssa wants is to follow in their footsteps as the next in line for the throne. Why would she choose to be trapped in a palace when she could be having wild adventures exploring a thousand-and-one planets in her own ship?

But when Alyssa’s uncle becomes gravely ill, his dying wish surprises the entire galaxy. Instead of naming her as his successor, he calls for a crownchase, the first in seven centuries. Representatives from each of the empire’s prime families—including Alyssa—are thrown into a race to find the royal seal, which has been hidden somewhere in the empire. The first to find the seal wins the throne.

Alyssa’s experience as an explorer makes her the favorite to win the crown she never wanted. And though she doesn’t want to be empress, her duty to her uncle compels her to participate in this one last epic adventure. But when the chase turns deadly, it’s clear that more than just the fate of the empire is at stake. Alyssa is on her most important quest yet—and only time will tell if she’ll survive it.


“If you’re seeing this, you’d better run.”


Crownchasers was such a joy to read! and it’s a testament to Coffindaffer’s writing being excellent that they wrote an entire book revolving around a race and I, who hate those kind of arcs, was enamored with the story and its characters. I loved Alyssa’s voice, humor, and personality and had a great time going on this journey through her perspective.

The plot was pretty familiar to me, but I really enjoyed how it was developed and the author’s take on the crownchase. The world-building was really interesting and it was super cool that the characters presented some… non-human characteristics regarding their appearances 😀 Continue reading

Review: THE JASMINE THRONE by Tasha Suri


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28114396
THE JASMINE THRONE
Tasha Suri

SeriesBurning Kingdoms #1
Genre: Fantasy, LGBTQ+
Publisher: Orbit
Pages: 533
Publication date: June 8, 2021

Imprisoned by her dictator brother, Malini spends her days in isolation in the Hirana: an ancient temple that was once the source of the powerful, magical deathless waters — but is now little more than a decaying ruin.

Priya is a maidservant, one among several who make the treacherous journey to the top of the Hirana every night to clean Malini’s chambers. She is happy to be an anonymous drudge, so long as it keeps anyone from guessing the dangerous secret she hides.

But when Malini accidentally bears witness to Priya’s true nature, their destinies become irrevocably tangled. One is a vengeful princess seeking to depose her brother from his throne. The other is a priestess seeking to find her family. Together, they will change the fate of an empire.


“I want you to remember, always, where your loyalties lie.”


I want to start this review by saying that Malini and Bhumika were like all of my dreams come true when it came to female characters in Fantasy novels. Everything single thing about their personalities and character journey and the decisions they made during the book made me feel like Tasha Suri got inside my brain and wrote everything I had ever wanted to see, ever, from female protagonists in Fantasy. I loved them and I love Suri’s writing for giving that to me. Continue reading

WWW Wednesday: Read, Reading, Will Read (185)

wwwwed

Welcome to WWW Wednesday, a meme currently being hosted by Sam @ Taking On A World of Words. It’s a place for you to do a little update on what your reading plans are.

The Three W’s are:

  • What are you currently reading?
  • What did you recently finish reading?
  • What do you think you’ll read next?

What are you currently reading?

 

1. Foundation Trilogy by Isaac Asimov

Sci-Fi! So I finished the first book in the trilogy and really liked it! I liked how it was structured and the little glimpses it gave us on the Foundation and whatnot. Looking forward to book 2!

2. Beren and Lúthien by J.R.R. Tolkien

Fantasy! This is so hard to reeeeead which is a shame because the story is so cooooooool.


What did you recently finish reading?

    1. Loveless by Alice Oseman: YA! I liked the writing, but the story in general made me upset.
    2. Bloodwitch by Susan Dennard: YA Fantasy! I love Aeduan and I really enjoyed how the plot progressed in this one!
    3. Razorblade Tears by S.A. Cosby: Mystery! Such an intriguing mystery read.
    4. Raybearer by Jordan Ifueko: YA Fantasy! So many things happened in this book and it was entertaining as hell.
    5. The Final Girl Support Group by Grady Hendrix: Horror! Loved how messy the plot was, but Lynnette’s perspective was a bit difficult to get through.
    6. Neon Gods by Katee Robert: Romance! I really enjoyed the world-building, but didn’t really care about the sex parts.

What do you think you’ll read next?

22840421The Taking of Jake Livingston by Ryan Douglass


This looks like it’s going to be so much fun and I love fun!

Jake Livingston is one of the only Black kids at St. Clair Prep, one of the others being his infinitely more popular older brother. It’s hard enough fitting in but to make matters worse and definitely more complicated, Jake can see the dead. In fact he sees the dead around him all the time. Most are harmless. Stuck in their death loops as they relive their deaths over and over again, they don’t interact often with people. But then Jake meets Sawyer. A troubled teen who shot and killed six kids at a local high school last year before taking his own life. Now a powerful, vengeful ghost, he has plans for his afterlife–plans that include Jake.


What books did you recently finish reading? What do you plan on reading next?
Tell me in the comments!


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Top 10 Tuesday: Title Questions?

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Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl. This week’s theme is: Book Titles That are Questions.

31145148Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? by Philip K. Dick


It was January 2021, and Rick Deckard had a license to kill.
Somewhere among the hordes of humans out there, lurked several rogue androids. Deckard’s assignment–find them and then…”retire” them. Trouble was, the androids all looked exactly like humans, and they didn’t want to be found!

22840421Whose Body? by Dorothy L. Sayers


The stark naked body was lying in the tub. Not unusual for a proper bath, but highly irregular for murder — especially with a pair of gold pince-nez deliberately perched before the sightless eyes. What’s more, the face appeared to have been shaved after death. The police assumed that the victim was a prominent financier, but Lord Peter Wimsey, who dabbled in mystery detection as a hobby, knew better. In this, his first murder case, Lord Peter untangles the ghastly mystery of the corpse in the bath.

30233110N or M? by Agatha Christie


The final words of the dying man…the code names of Hitler’s most dangerous agents…the mysterious clue that sends Tommy and Tuppence to a seaside resort on a mission of wartime intelligence. But not as husband and wife. As strangers, meeting by chance, setting an elaborate trap for an elusive killer.

18189606Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf? by Edward Albee


“Twelve times a week,” answered Uta Hagen when asked how often she’d like to play Martha in Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf? In the same way, audiences and critics alike could not get enough of Edward Albee’s masterful play. A dark comedy, it portrays husband and wife George and Martha in a searing night of dangerous fun and games. By the evening’s end, a stunning, almost unbearable revelation provides a climax that has shocked audiences for years.

27883214Can You Keep a Secret? by Sophie Kinsella


Meet Emma Corrigan, a young woman with a huge heart, an irrepressible spirit, and a few little secrets: Secrets from her boyfriend: I’ve always thought Connor looks a bit like Ken. As in Barbie and Ken. Secrets from her mother: I lost my virginity in the spare bedroom with Danny Nussbaum while Mum and Dad were downstairs watching Ben-Hur. Secrets she wouldn’t share with anyone in the world: I have no idea what NATO stands for. Or even what it is. Until she spills them all to a handsome stranger on a plane.

23299512Am I Normal Yet? by Holly Bourne


All Evie wants is to be normal. She’s almost off her meds and at a new college where no one knows her as the girl-who-went-crazy. She’s even going to parties and making friends. There’s only one thing left to tick off her list… But relationships are messy – especially relationships with teenage guys. They can make any girl feel like they’re going mad. And if Evie can’t even tell her new friends Amber and Lottie the truth about herself, how will she cope when she falls in love?


Do you know of other books with question marks in the title?
Let me know in the comments!


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Review: BENEATH THE DEVIL’S BRIDGE by Loreth Anne White


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28114396
BENEATH THE DEVIL’S BRIDGE
Loreth Anne White

Genre: Mystery
Publisher: Montlake
Pages: 344
Publication date: June 1, 2021

True crime podcaster Trinity Scott is chasing breakout success, and her brand-new serial may get her there. Her subject is Clayton Jay Pelley. More than two decades ago, the respected family man and guidance counselor confessed to the brutal murder of teenage student Leena Rai. But why he killed her has always been a mystery.

In a series of exclusive interviews from prison, Clayton discloses to Trinity the truth about what happened that night beneath Devil’s Bridge. It’s not what anyone in the Pacific Northwest town of Twin Falls expects. Clayton says he didn’t do it. Was he lying then? Or now?

As her listeners increase and ratings skyrocket, Trinity is missing a key player in the story: Rachel Walczak, the retired detective who exposed Pelley’s twisted urges and put him behind bars. She’s not interested in playing Clayton’s game – until Trinity digs deeper and the podcast’s reverb widens. Then Rachel begins to question everything she thinks she knows about the past.

With each of Clayton’s teasing reveals, one thing is clear: he’s not the only one in Twin Falls with a secret.


“Follow the truth, Rache. Even if it hurts.”


Beneath the Devil’s Bridge was a pretty interesting and entertaining read. The beginning was a bit difficult to get into, as the opening chapter set up the premise during a situation that made me uncomfortable, but I quickly got used to the pace and the POV characters.

I did enjoy how the plot was divided between Then (1997) with the investigation into Leena’s murder and Now (Present) with the podcast recordings. White did a very good job at handling both and I personally really really liked how the podcast transcripts and such where used in the plot. Continue reading

Review: WE HUNT THE FLAME by Hafsah Faizal


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28114396
WE HUNT THE FLAME
Hafsah Faizal

SeriesSands of Arawiya #1
Genre: Young Adult, Fantasy
Publisher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux
Pages: 472
Publication date: May 14, 2019

Zafira is the Hunter, disguising herself as a man when she braves the cursed forest of the Arz to feed her people. Nasir is the Prince of Death, assassinating those foolish enough to defy his autocratic father, the sultan. If Zafira was exposed as a girl, all of her achievements would be rejected; if Nasir displayed his compassion, his father would punish him in the most brutal of ways. Both Zafira and Nasir are legends in the kingdom of Arawiya–but neither wants to be.

War is brewing, and the Arz sweeps closer with each passing day, engulfing the land in shadow. When Zafira embarks on a quest to uncover a lost artifact that can restore magic to her suffering world and stop the Arz, Nasir is sent by the sultan on a similar mission: retrieve the artifact and kill the Hunter. But an ancient evil stirs as their journey unfolds–and the prize they seek may pose a threat greater than either can imagine.


Breathe. Assess.


We Hunt the Flame was a conflicting read, but the overall feeling I had was that this was a pretty fun and entertaining story. The setting was very interesting to me in particular, since I love eerie magical places, and I loved the writing!

Zafira and Nasir as narrators had distinct voices, but I did expect a bit more from them in terms of personality. Nasir’s backstory and Zafira’s motivation were intriguing and I did like their character development as the story went on. The side characters did steal a bit of the spotlight, though, with Altair being my favorite one. Continue reading