Thursday, December 13, 2018

Review: Warrior of the Wild by Tricia Levenseller

I felt so sure I would enjoy this book. And the fact that I did not is breaking my heart a little. That cover is gorgeous. And this story sounded interesting and exciting. Sadly, it was none of those. At least not for me. And so I have to give this one two stars. It was almost three, but I did not like it that much, I'm sorry to say. Sigh.

There is so much I feel like sharing about this book. And I do not think much of it will be positive. Will simply share all my thoughts about this book. And I have many of those. I really liked the first book by this author, even read it twice. But her second book was also a two star for me. I wish this had been better, but it was not.

Will begin by saying that I did not like the writing. At all. I tried to grow used to it, to start enjoying it, but it never happened. Oh. It bothered me from start to finish. I was not able to connect to the characters. Did also not manage to visualize most of this world either. Which was disappointing. It also annoyed me greatly that there was no empty line between when the character falls asleep or days go by, or things like that. It made sure that I lost focus on the story many times, because it happened so often, and so abrupt. Sigh. The writing wasn't terrible, truly. It was just not for me. Not at all. I really wish I had been able to love this book. I really wanted to. As I do adore this author. And Warrior of the Wild looked so very gorgeous. But ended up being not for me at all.

This book tells the story of Rasmira. She is the youngest of six siblings, all girls, born to the village leader. He has been raising her to be a warrior, like the men, to be able to take over as the leader after him. She is the best at training, the best with an ax. She is close with her sisters, but not with her mother. She also has no friends. Except for this one boy that started being nice to her six weeks ago. She truly hopes for more between them, and it seems like he wants this too. Until be betrays her just a short time later. Sigh.

At the biggest thing that happens to young people in this world, when they take a test to finally become a real warrior. This boy makes sure that Rasmira fails her test. And because of this, she is banished. And faced with the task of killing a god that lives in the forest, which is a death sentence. This whole beginning was pretty messy. Yet interesting too. I did like getting to know Rasmira. She was interesting, most of the time. But she did not question this boy at all, and that hurt my heart a little bit. How easy she was fooled.

I would not consider this to be too big of a spoiler, as it happens early in the book, and it is what gets this book started. Something that bothered me a lot, however, is that Rasmira let what happened with the boy bother her too much. And for too long. Worse things could have happened to her with this boy. She felt a bit over dramatic. But I also somewhat understood her too. Anyway. She is banished. Spends a few days on her own. Until she ends up meeting a boy almost dead in the forest. He lives there with another one.

We get to know these two boys a lot. They have been banished for a year now, with tasks of their own. I did grow to care so much for Soren. And I did ship them a whole lot. But did not feel any sparks. Probably because of how badly she treated him at times. It wasn't too horrible, but it bothered me. Oh, well. I have shared enough of this book now. Something that I did like, however, was all the different creatures in this book. I wish they had been more detailed, and more scary, but I liked reading about them. I wanted more.

This book is about Rasmira surviving out in the wild. With two other boys. About her learning to do things, learning a whole bunch of things. While also trying to figure out how to kill a god. And helping these boys with their missions too. While I did not love this book, I did find parts of it to be interesting. I liked reading about the creatures. Was curious about the world. But sadly did not love the characters. At all. Liked them sometimes. But they felt silly most of the time, and felt like the girl was too much. Do wish I had loved her.

Another thing that truly bothered me about this book was that I was never sure what time period it was supposed to be set in. The past? The future? It was impossible to tell. It did not feel like a book from the past at all. It seemed like they all lived as in the past, but none of them behaved like it. As this book was simply not written in a way that made it seemed like it was set in the past. Not with how the main girl was talking and thinking. That bothered me through the whole book, to be honest. I wish it had been clearer.

Huge thank you to the publisher, Feiwel & Friends, for the approval to read this one early as an eARC via Netgalley. I am glad I had the chance to read this one, despite not liking it much. I'm still unsure if I will be buying the hardcover or not. I do want the print ARC for my collection, however. Hmm. Sadly do not think I will ever read this book again. But I'm also glad that I gave it a try, that I managed to finish it. Although this book was not for me, I'm positive that many others will love it. Curious to see what you all think of it.


Wednesday, December 12, 2018

Review: Archimancy by J. A. White

I have been a fan of this author for many years now. I loved his first fantasy series beyond words. And will always read his new books. I was a little nervous about this new one, as I'm more of a fantasy person, and do not read many books set in present time. Yet I was excited too. And ended up liking it a bunch. Four stars.

Archimancy was a quick and fun read. I had a small issue getting into it at the beginning, but that did not last long, and I ended up enjoying everything a whole lot. While I didn't fully love the book, it was pretty much adorable, and I'm so very excited about more books coming about these characters. The ending was too soon.

This first book is written from the point of view of eleven year old Cordelia. The summer before a new school year begins, she and her parents had to move from their town, hours away. So she is now starting a new school, with no friends. Cordelia is not happy about this move at all. And she spends a lot of the book unhappy about it, yet also slowly growing to love her school and liking the town too and especially the people in it. And I liked that a whole lot. And I also enjoyed getting to know Cordelia, as she was adorable. Kind and sweet, yet a bit rude too. I loved how quickly she became friends with Agnes, the girl everyone else treated badly. I loved how she went out of her way to get to talk to Benji too, a boy who was ignoring everyone. I adored their friendship.

This is a book about ghosts. How Cordelia starts her new school, which is this huge ancient place that is all kinds of creepy and awesome. And once there, she hears a little boy crying. When she tries to touch him, her hand goes through him. Which freaks her out for a bit. She then also start seeing more than one ghost. I shall not mention more about it, since this book felt so short, maybe because of how fast I read it. But though short, it was still full of great things. And I enjoyed reading all of it. It's full of awesome ghosts.

This book is about Cordelia. And getting to know her. And her getting to know the ghosts of her school. It was interesting to get to know the history of it all, learning why there are ghosts there, and learning how it was possible to help them. Cordelia is the only person who can see the ghosts. Until she notices another boy who can too; Benji. I have already mentioned this, but gosh, I adored her friendship with Agnes and Benji. They became fast friends and were awesome together. Shipped Cordelia and Benji so much, haha.

There is not really all that much I can share about this book. And so I shall not write such a long review. Only sharing that I enjoyed it a whole lot and that I am very much excited about more books. And hoping they will all be about the same characters too, as I need more of them all. I do wish this book had been more scary, haha, yet I was happy with how it was written too. Getting to know Cordelia and her friends was the best. I wish to know even more about all of them, though. And I want even more ghosts as well.

One thing that I did not like much about this book, was that it's so short, and it takes place over an entire school year. I felt like maybe it could have happened faster, without all the time jumps. Yet I also like that they are all older now, but yeah. The time jumps didn't need to be there. I also wish there had been even more friendship scenes with Cordelia and Agnes and Benji. As they were the cutest together. But I did not really dislike anything in this book. Only small things I had issues with. The rest of this one was awesome.

Archimancy was an incredible first book in a new series. Full of fun and friendship and ghosts. I adored all of the characters. And I found the writing to be pretty amazing too. While I do not care much for books set in the present, I did not mind much in this one. Probably because of the creepy school and all the ghosts, haha. This book is not out until August of next year, which is still months away. But couldn't resist reading it early. Huge thank you to Harper for the auto-approval on Edelweiss. You all must read this one as well.


Waiting on Wednesday #374

"Waiting On" Wednesday is a weekly event, hosted by Breaking the Spine, that spotlights upcoming releases that we're eagerly anticipating.

HOUSE OF SALT AND SORROWS BY ERIN A. CRAIG

Goodreads Description:

Get swept away in Erin A. Craig's mesmerizing House of Salt and Sorrows. As one by one her beautiful sisters mysteriously die on their isolated island estate, Annaleigh must unravel the curse that haunts her family. Be careful who you dance with. . . .

In a manor by the sea, twelve sisters are cursed.


Annaleigh lives a sheltered life at Highmoor, a manor by the sea, with her sisters, their father, and stepmother. Once they were twelve, but loneliness fills the grand halls now that four of the girls' lives have been cut short. Each death was more tragic than the last—the plague, a plummeting fall, a drowning, a slippery plunge—and there are whispers throughout the surrounding villages that the family is cursed by the gods.

Disturbed by a series of ghostly visions, Annaleigh becomes increasingly suspicious that the deaths were no accidents. Her sisters have been sneaking out every night to attend glittering balls, dancing until dawn in silk gowns and shimmering slippers, and Annaleigh isn't sure whether to try to stop them or to join their forbidden trysts. Because who—or what—are they really dancing with?

When Annaleigh's involvement with a mysterious stranger who has secrets of his own intensifies, it's a race to unravel the darkness that has fallen over her family—before it claims her next.
 

Hardcover, 416 pages
Expected publication: August 6th 2019 by Delacorte
Pre-Order here and here

This book sounds all kinds of amazing and I'm pretty much dying to read it. Ahh. It sounds like Entwined. And looks like To Kill a Kingdom. And if it is a mix between those to? I am positive that I will love this book a whole bunch, eee :D I'm so very excited about. Just wishing it was out now, hmph. I need it. Can't wait.
What are you waiting for on this sorrowful Wednesday?

Monday, December 10, 2018

Review: Courting Darkness by Robin LaFevers

This book was as perfect as I had hoped it would be. And it also ruined me the way I knew it would. Yet I loved every moment of it. Courting Darkness gave me all that I had hoped for and more. Such a stunning book that I adored very much. Five stars for this one for sure. The writing was, once more, perfection. Loved it so.

And I'm so very happy that this book was half told from Sybella's point of view, as she was my favorite from the trilogy. And getting to read more about her made my heart the happiest. But also so very nervous, and so I spent the entire book dreading everything that could happen next, haha. It was so very exciting too though.

Courting Darkness is told from two point of views, switching back and forth between them. One is Sybella, whom was the point of view in Dark Triumph. The other was Genevieve, a character we had not yet seen. This book takes place right after the ending of Mortal Heart, only days later. There is a tiny bit about Ismae and Annith, though they are not in this one, apart from the beginning. I missed them, but loved the small peek at their lives, and hoping there will be more in book two. As this one was very much the story of Sybella and Genevieve. Both girls that I loved so much. Reading from their point of views was the very best. Sigh. I may have loved Sybella a whole lot more, because I knew her better. And her people. But I grew to care much for Genevieve too.

The story from Sybella is of her going with the duchess Anne to France, to marry her to the french king. It is not an easy journey, and a precious person die. I am a little upset about it, haha, but also okay with it, I think. But gosh. Life at the french court is not easy. Not for Sybella, and especially not for Anne, whom is only fourteen years old in this book. The king she marries is not a cruel man, but neither is he very kind or smart. I hated how he didn't seem to care for Anne at all. It ruined my heart in all the ways. It was not fair.

Especially because of the king's sister, the regent. She is in this book at all times. And she was the most horrible woman possible, I think. The ways she humiliated Anne was not okay. So hurtful and rude and it broke my heart a little. I'm so thankful that Sybella was there for her, but it did not help all that much. And this woman was not a kind one at all. And I shudder to think of what she will do next in the second book. She was interesting, though, and I would call her a villain. A well written one at that. But oh, I did hate her.

What I loved was getting to know even more about Sybella. And seeing more of her and Beast together. Sigh. I ship those two the very most. They do not get to spend much time together at all, once they arrive in France. But they are still very much in love and their small moments together made me so very happy. We learn a little more of Beast too, and book two will be a big part of that, and I am so not ready. It will be heartbreaking and rude and ahh. I'm not ready. But hopeful too. Hopeful for a happy ending for them all.

Then there was Genevieve. She too is from the St. Mortain convent. But she was sent to the french court five years ago, when she was only twelve years old. Sent to live there as a spy, awaiting instructions from the convent. Which has never come. Getting to know Genevieve was so very complicated for me. It took some time for me to care for her. She had not suffered very much in her life, like the other main girls. But I'm so very thankful for that, though that also made it easier for me to connect to all the other main girls.

But I did connect with Genevieve too, even though it was slow to happen. She was not sent alone to this foreign place, but with a friend of the same age. They were best of friends, until the other girl started to care less for her, and treated her more badly. And then she dies. Which Gen feels torn about. I have not mentioned anything about how she lives, and I'm not going to. Only that it was interesting to read about her life and how she has survived so far. She find a forgotten prisoner in this home of hers, almost dead.

She gives him food, and visits with him, though not too often. Hmph. They end up escaping together, and Genevieve have a lot of reasons for this. I may not have liked those reasons all that much. But I grew to love this girl a whole lot even so. And reading about her scenes with this prisoner was all kinds of fun. I ended up shipping them a whole lot, and I am all kinds of nervous about how that will turn out in the next book. Hmm. I do have hope. But this prisoner is all kinds of complicated too, and brings so many issues.

There is so much going on in this book. And I have not written down much of it at all. And I'm not going to either. Though I will say that I loved every moment of this book. I loved reading more about Sybella, and her role in Anne's life. I loved learning more about her sisters too. Bad things are coming for Sybella, and I am so very nervous about it. But beyond excited too. This first book was huge and glorious. Still much to come, but this book was full of everything, and I loved that. Every moment was perfection. So very happy.

I have already written so much about this book. And yet not enough at all. I feel that I could write about it for hours more. But I will not. Though I must share that you all need to read Courting Darkness. Because it was so good. The best book to come after the Grave Mercy trilogy. I do suppose you can read it without having read those first, but you should not. Read them. All of them. Courting Darkness was everything to me. Full of vengeance and death. Romance and hope. Political drama. This book had it all. I loved it so.

I must admit to being beyond worried about the second book, which will also be the last one. As there is so much that still needs to happen. And I'm unsure if everything will end happily. But gosh, how I need a happy ending for my favorites from these books. I'm not sure I could survive to have any of them die. A good thing, though, was that Courting Darkness did not have a cliffhanger ending. Some things are still left open, but the ending was good. I mean, so much still to come, but it was not bad. I'm thankful for it.

Huge thank you to HMH Teen for sending me a free ARC of this most precious book to read and review early. It means the very most to me and I will treasure this gorgeous thing always. So very happy to have gotten to read this book right now. Re-reading the trilogy first then getting to read this new book was just what I needed right now. Every one of them was stunning. Courting Darkness was everything I needed it to be. Beautiful and deadly. The most amazing girls, full of hurt and anger and hope. Worth all of the pain.


Saturday, December 8, 2018

In My Mailbox #370

I have read three books this week. Eee. More than I have done in ages, haha. And they were three huge books; I re-read the Grave Mercy trilogy. Sigh. And I loved them so very much. Eee. Which means they are the first five star books I have read in ages and ages. Sigh. So very happy about that. I will be starting Courting Darkness next, and my god, I am so excited. Crossing all my fingers I will love it just as much as the original trilogy :D I also got some stunning mail this week, eee. <3 But no Queen of Air and Darkness. Sigh. Which I'm not even sure will arrive before Christmas. I mean, I will not be reading it just yet even so, since I must re-read the first two books first, but I want my copies, so that I can peek, haha :D I have seen no spoilers so far. And hoping it will continue until I can peek myself, lol. This week have been good and bad. I'm exhausted. But I have been able to do things too. I have read. And I have commented so so very much too. Still tons to go, but I have done a bunch. So yay for that. Also some new blog posts. I shared my third review of Grave Mercy. <3 This week I'm waiting on King of Scars :D Eee! And then my second review of Dark Triumph. <3 And my second review of Mortal Heart :D I'm exhausted, have no money, no room, but I'm happy. Haha. I love my books. <3 So I'm mostly doing okay. Just wishing I would stop being in pain all the time too. Hmph. Oh, well. I'm reading. Eee. And I'm so very thrilled about it :) It is the best.



Flashback. B&N special edition :D I had to have this one too, because of that awesome Fitz scene, eee.
The Raven Boys. Was missing 1 copy of this stunning UK paperback for my huge collection, haha. Love.
The Reckoning of Noah Shaw. UK paperback; because I had to have this one to complete my collection.
Wildcard Pre-Order Swag. Eee, thank you so so much for helping me get this Becky :D You are the best.
ARCs + Swag. Oh my gosh! AHH! Thank you so so much to GodofWax for trading all of this amazing with me :D I am so so very happy with all of it. Sigh. Archenemies ARC! The tote bag! The mask! All the pins! And three upcoming ARCs I have not yet read, and am super excited about :D Also Dreadful ARC to help with my awesome collection of books by Kelly. Eee. Thank you Becky for helping me get it all. <3 Hugs.


More Instagram photos here. <3