The Star-Touched Queen Review!

star touched queen

Two truths and a lie.

Roshani Chokshi started this books off extremely well and kept me interested all the way through the first half? True.

Roshani Chokshi writes with a beautiful, poetic style? True.

Roshani Chokshi, in her first novel, has fully explained this complicated world and had great pacing? False.

While this was written so, so beautifully, I was also very confused for the majority of the second half. There were so many explanations of these mythological ideas and they felt like info dumps instead of weaving with the plot and action parts of the story and for me, sometimes they just didn’t make sense. It pains me to say that I skimmed some parts of the second half because I was so confused because the first half was so kick-ass and the writing is absolutely beautiful.

I likes Maya as a character but I wish we could have seen more of her taking charge instead of being hung up on Amar and being just as confused as I was in some parts. I also was not a huge fan of the romance between Maya and Amar, I thought that there was not enough build up to them being all over each other all of a sudden. Also, I wish we could have seen more from other characters like Gauri and Gupta, even though it is in Maya’s perspective.

Hopefully these problems will become things of the past when I read the second book next year. I hope it is about Gauri, I would love to see that. Also a bit of a clearer explanation of the plot and customs would be nice.

Roshani Chokshi is also one of the nicest people I have ever met (I went to a signing for her and got my copy signed) and I SO wanted to love this, especially since I just finished and loved And I Darken by Kiersten White and it is very much in the same vein with the mythology and historical elements. This book just did not wow me, but I am sincerely hoping Roshani’s sophomore novel does!

three stars

Happy reading!

-Ashley (:

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And I Darken Review!

and i darken

Thank you to Delacorte Press for providing me with an early copy of this beautiful book! All opinions are my own.

I’M GOING TO TRY TO KEEP THIS AS NON-SPOILERY AS I CAN. FAIR WARNING.

I absolutely loved Kiersten White’s Illusions of Fate, Mind Games and Perfect Lies so naturally, I was eager to get my hands on this book. In contrast to her or works that I have read, this book is considerably longer and my mind said that this is either going to be a great thing or a really bad thing in terms of the storytelling. I am glad to say that this was a wonderful thing! This book was so crazy good.  It had some really interesting aspects that I have never read before in a fantasy novel and I highly recommend this book to everyone. Like with Amy Tintera’s new book, Kiersten White takes her writing to a whole other level with this high fantasy venture that was simply not present in her sci-fi works.

One thing that I found really interesting was the questions raised about what freedom truly is. Lads, our lead character,is so convinced that she knows what she wants out of her life and is determined to stay on her path no matter what. However, she meets some other women in her travels that make her see that sometimes freedom comes at a cost to those who you wish to protect or fight for. I also really enjoyed the relationship between Lada Mehmed and how she grew into someone who could be ferocious but also have connections that go deeper than those of gain. I also enjoyed out main cast of characters and how they grew with each other as they learned more about themselves. I especially liked, as I said before, Lada being able to open up and trust others, shown with some of her soldiers as well in the last third of the book.

I also really enjoyed how short the chapters were. They kept the story moving at a wonderful pace and kept me intrigued and interested to get to the next Lada or Radu chapter. I also thought it was interesting how fast time moved in this novel. In the turn of one page, it was nearly a decade later sometimes. The political intrigue and the unflinching nature in which some of the customs of ancient kingdoms were described also intrigued me and kept me thinking about this book every time I put it down.

All in all, I really enjoyed this and I will definitley be picking up the rest of the series because that cliffhanger man, that cliffhanger.

four-stars_0

You should definitely pick this up on June 28th, 2016!

Thank you again to Delacorte Press for sending me an early copy!

Happy Reading!

-Ashley (:

A Court of Mist and Fury Mini Review!

acomaf

Short mini review for this beauty! Trying to condense all my thoughts into something not too long (: Excited for book 3!

4.5 stars (:

I had some problems with this book, especially in the middle, but near the last third, it was so amazingly fantastic. The writing as always is fantastic and the new characters are amazing (:

The Problems:

#1- It simply was too long. Some scenes felt like they were describing and showing for no reason and I wanted more of the plot and the romance or some characters interactions.

#2- Tamlin. I know people who aren’t reading this book because of his character change. I agree that it wasn’t really warranted to have him change so drastically, but we do have some backstory that we didn’t know in ACOTAR that attribute to why.

#3- I think being in first person POV does this book a disservice. ToG has a third person narrator that is able to go around to all the characters while here it is only Feyre and what she sees. This is starting to change in the very end but it caused a lot of confusion for me at some points in the middle.

#4- Rhys kind of felt a little watered down. Sometimes he was the villain I really liked in ACOTAR and sometimes he felt too vulnerable than I would think would go with his character. Still liked him though (:

 

Unpopular Opinions!

I’ve been watching a lot of “Unpopular Opinions” videos on Youtube and thought it would be fun and interesting to do one of my own. I don’t mean to bash anyone’s favorites, just my own personal opinion! Enjoy (:

This tag was originally created by TheBookArcher on YouTube.

1. A Popular Book or series that you didn’t like.

For me, this has to be Looking for Alaska and An Abundance of Katherines by John Green. I just found the plots to be really slow and kind of ridiculous at times and the characters to be really annoying. I loved the side characters but the main ones just made these books drag and difficult at times.
2. A Popular Book or series that every one else seems to hate but you love.

There are many that love this series, but there are many that absolutely hate them and for me, I absolutely love The Mortal Instruments series (really all the Shadowhunter books) by Cassandra Clare. Granted, City of Bones was not the best book in the world, but the TMI series as a whole is wonderful. City of Glass and City of Heavenly Fire are so amazing that even if you don’t care for the other books, no matter how good others might say they are, its worth reading them all. Also Alec Lightwood is there. And Isabelle Lightwood. And Magnus Bane. And Sebastian Morgenstern. Okay I’ll stop. Just go read all the Shadowhunter books! Don’t judge them by City of Bones!
3. A Love Triangle where the main character ended up with the person you did NOT want them to end up with (warn ppl for spoilers) OR an OTP that you don’t like.

***SPOILERS FOR THE GRISHA TRILOGY BY LEIGH BARDUGO***

I don’t like Mal. Never did, never will. I loved Nikolai so much and I wish that Alina would have ended up with him instead. Or by herself, anyone but Mal.

4. A popular book Genre that you hardly reach for.

Historical Fiction. I loved Code Name Verity by Elizabeth Wein and Prisoner of Night and Fog by Anne Blankman but I have no been able to get into any historical fiction books as of late.
5. A popular or beloved character that you do not like.

I’m going to do what Emma from “emmmabooks” on YouTube did for this and say a hated character that you love. I love Eadlyn in The Heir by Kiera Cass. A lot of people thought she was a bitch but for me, she was a boss ass bitch. She made her decisions in a timely manner and did what needed to be done and I loved how she took charge. Love her.
6. A popular author that you can’t seem to get into.

Jennifer E. Smith. I’ve read three whole books by her and thought that one was just okay and that the other two were so stupid and unrealistic. She’s just not for me.
7. A popular book trope that you’re tired of seeing. (examples “lost princess”, corrupt ruler, love triangles, etc.)

Love triangles. They’re annoying and don’t happen in real life. Just stop.Also the “lost princess” trope is becoming too common.
8. A popular series that you have no interest in reading. 

The Divergent Trilogy by Veronica Roth. I got spoiled for Allegiant when it came out but I’ve also heard that the books aren’t that great after the first one so…
9. The saying goes “The book is always better than the movie”, but what movie or T.V. show adaptation do you prefer more than the book?

I didn’t read it, but from what I heard, The Maze Runner was a much better movie. And if what I have heard about the book from people with similar tastes is true, I would have to agree.

Happy Reading!

-Ashley (:

This Savage Song Review!

this savage song

Huge thanks to Edelweiss and HarperCollins for an early copy of this beauty! All opinions are my own.

NON-SPOILERY REVIEW!

I am in love with Victoria Schwab’s books. She’s just such a master at her craft that its awe-inspiring. I have loved every single book I have read of hers to date so of course I tried everything in my power to get my hands on her newest release as soon as I could.

As per usual, the writing in this was off the charts amazing. Victoria Schwab has created a world that is both creepy and scary but can also be beautiful at times as well. This world, to me at least, seems like something straight out of a comic book or sci-fi movie and it left a lot to the imagination of the reader to visualize these places and the numerous hidden door and openings were a lot of fun as well.

I also really loved the characters in this. From the very beginning, you don’t know what you should feel for Kate. And as the book progresses, she becomes more and more unlikable but nearing towards the end, she really starts to redeem herself and we learn alongside her, what is actually going on. August is the most precious thing, like I just wanted to give him a hug! He was so conflicted and all he wanted to do was help and do good things and fit in but the society he is a part of wouldn’t let him! My heart was breaking when he started to get ravenously hungry and I didn’t know what he was going to do, but I am so excited to see more of his character and how he grows after what has happened. I really enjoyed the switching perspectives, I thought it was really great to see similar scenes from two separate pairs of eyer, if you read the book, you’ll understand (:.

The final thing I want to talk about in this little, short review is how interesting I found the monsters! The different species of monsters were so interesting to learn about, especially the Sunai (because of reasons you will find out when you read it =D). I can’t wait to see more of these monsters and possibly more in the next book.

Overall this book was really great, as with every Victoria Schwab read (:

This Savage Song will be released on July 5th, 2016! 

five-stars

-Ashley (:

Ashley Recommends! List #1

A little series I’m hoping to do in which I recommend some of my favorite under hyped books! Hope you read some and enjoy this series (:


1. Snow Like Ashes and Ice Like Fire by Sara Raasch  

Cool, badass fantasy with a unique world and magic system! Last book comes out this year!

SLA review: https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/1086595551?book_show_action=false

ILF review (kind of): https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/1119976838?book_show_action=false


2. Grave Mercy and Dark Triumph by Robin LaFevers

I have not yet finished this trilogy but these first two were great! Badassery and amazing characters, what more could you ask for?

GM: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/9565548-grave-mercy?from_search=true&search_version=service

DT review: https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/1087247830?book_show_action=false


3. Falling Kingdoms, Rebel Spring, Gathering Darkness, Frozen Tides and A Book of Spirits and Thieves by Morgan Rhodes

Game of Thrones for the YA crowd. These are epic fantasy books with an amazing romance and friendships, great characters and a plot that is so well constructed, you won’t be able to put the book down!

FK review: https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/1163656261?book_show_action=false

RS review: https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/1148322062?book_show_action=false

GD review: https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/1148322369?book_show_action=false

FT review: https://thebroadwaylibrarian.wordpress.com/2016/01/04/frozen-tides-review/

ABoSaT review: https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/1169692898?book_show_action=false


4. Open Road Summer and The Start of Me and You by Emery Lord

Smart contemporaries with amazing characters and plots that aren’t all about the romance, but the romances are still adorable (:

ORS: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/17978160-open-road-summer?from_search=true&search_version=service

TSoMaY review: https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/1064551208?book_show_action=false


5. Ask Again Later and Top Ten Clues You’re Clueless by Liz Czukas

Super cute contemporaries that have really fun stories!

AAL: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/16090645-ask-again-later?from_search=true&search_version=service

TTCyC: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/20646933-top-ten-clues-you-re-clueless?from_search=true&search_version=service


6. A Little Something Different by Sandy Hall

Review: https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/1087427906?book_show_action=false


7. Forbidden and Banished by Kimberley Griffiths Little

A rich, Mesopotamian setting for this amazing story of a girl trying to make her own way in the harsh desert!

Forbidden review: https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/1086797465?book_show_action=false

Banished review: https://thebroadwaylibrarian.wordpress.com/2016/01/20/banished-review/


8. Half Bad and Half Wild by Sally Green

The third book just came out and I haven’t read it yet but this is a really different story about witches and if where you come from determines who you become.

HB: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/18079804-half-bad?from_search=true&search_version=service

HW review: https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/1112340337?book_show_action=false


9. Emmy & Oliver by Robin Benway

Wonderful story about trying to get back to normal life after going through an ordeal.

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/13132816-emmy-oliver


10. Wait for You, Be With Me, Stay With Me, Fall With Me and Forever With You by Jennifer L. Armentrout/J. Lynn

Amazing romances with wonderful characters and stories!

WFY:https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/17314430-wait-for-you

BWM: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/17558817-be-with-me

SWM: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/19501672-stay-with-me

FWM: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/20980781-fall-with-me

FWY: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/24357334-forever-with-you


Will do another list when I have more! Hope you enjoy!

-Ashley K (:

Happy Release Day to Summerlost by Allie Condie!

Summerlost cover

Happy release day to Ally Condie’s new book Summerlost! A big thanks to Penguin and WordSpelunker for organizing this release day blitz and letting me be a part of it! All the links to buy this book are down below along with a cool giveaway!


 

Buy: Penguin Random House: http://www.penguinrandomhouse.com/books/534589/summerlost-by-ally-condie/

Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/0399187197/ref=x_gr_w_bb?ie=UTF8&tag=x_gr_w_bb-20&linkCode=as2&camp=1789&creative=9325&creativeASIN=0399187197&SubscriptionId=1MGPYB6YW3HWK55XCGG2

Barnes & Noble: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/summerlost-ally-condie/1122291979
Indiebound: http://www.indiebound.org/book/9780399187193?aff=penguinrandom

Rafflecopter giveaway: http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/6973b88d396/?

Excerpt-http://issuu.com/penguinteen/docs/summerlost_p1-19?e=0/34476640

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/17731927-summerlost?from_new_nav=true&ac=1&from_search=true


 

Praise:

A Spring 2016 Kids’ Indie Next List Top 10 Pick!

 

Named one of Publishers Weekly’s Most Anticipated Children’s and YA Books of Spring 2016

 

« “Condie (Matched) strikes a deep emotional chord with this coming-of-age story.” – Publishers Weekly, starred review

 

« “Multiple, seemingly random details, including a family of turkey vultures that now roost outside Cedar’s window, an absurd soap opera narrative of a woman buried alive, and Leo’s quest for a trip with his father, coalesce into metaphors that help Cedar make sense of her grief and the life she now has to look forward to. Thoughtful, poetic chapter endings guide readers new to psychological depth toward meaningful connections between plot events and thematic reflections.” – BCCB

 

“A moving tale of friendship and loss. I loved these characters—I wish we could have been friends when I was a kid.” –Brandon Mull, #1 New York Times bestselling author of the Fablehaven and Five Kingdoms series

 

“Ally Condie’s first middle grade book might also be my favorite out of ALL her books to date. Summerlost is a story packed with nostalgia, heart, and gorgeous prose.” – The Novel Novice

 

“A nuanced portrait of grief deeply grounded in the middle-school mind-set.” – Booklist

 

“Honest, lovely, and sad.” – Kirkus Reviews

 

“A sweet, heartfelt story.” – School Library Journal

 

“Achingly good.” – Summer Laurie, Books Inc.


 

Happy reading! And thanks again to Penguin for organizing this!

-Ashley (: