Book Reviews

Book Review – Incendiary by Zoraida Cordova @zlikeinzorro @hodderbooks @niamh_anderson #Incendiary

When the royal family of Selvina sets out to destroy magic through a grand and terrible inquisition, magic warrior-thief Renata – trained in the art of stealing memories-seeks to kill the prince, leader of the King’s Justice, only to learn through powerful memories that he may be the greatest illusion of them all … and that the fate of all magic now lies in her hands.

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I am Renata Convida. I have lived a hundred stolen lives. Now I live my own.

Renata was only a child when she was kidnapped by the King’s Justice and brought to the luxurious palace of Andalucia. As a memory thief, the rarest and most feared of the magical Moria, Renata was used by the crown to carry out the King’s Wrath, a siege that resulted in the deaths of thousands of her own people.

Now Renata is one of the Whispers, rebel spies working against the crown. The Whispers may have rescued Renata years ago, but she cannot escape their mistrust and hatred-or the overpowering memories of the hundreds of souls she drained during her time in the palace.

When Dez, the commander of her unit-and the boy she’s grown to love-is taken captive by the notorious Principe Dorado, Renata must return to Andalucia and complete Dez’s top secret mission herself. Can she keep her cover, even as she burns for vengeance against the brutal, enigmatic prince? Her life and the fate of the Moria depend on it.

But returning to the palace stirs childhood memories long locked away. As Renata grows more deeply embedded in the politics of the royal court, she uncovers a secret in her past that could change the fate of the entire kingdom-and end the war that has cost her everything.

There’s a lot going on in this book – lots of twists right up until the end! Magic, death, love, heartbreak, secrets and much more. I really loved this book and while it seemed to slow down in the middle, everything came together in a massive twist at the end. I love books that keep me guessing, and even though I did figure out one plot twist, there was so much more going on. Can’t wait for the next book in this series to find out what happens to Ren!

I rated this book 5/5 stars

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Blog Tours · Book Reviews

Book Review – The Chosen Ones by Veronica Roth @hodderbooks #ChosenOnes

Welcome back to my blog to read my review of the brilliant The Chosen Ones by Veronica Roth.

This book was kindly sent to me by Hodder but all opinions are my own!

A decade ago near Chicago, five teenagers defeated the otherworldly enemy known as the Dark One, whose reign of terror brought widespread destruction and death. The seemingly un-extraordinary teens—Sloane, Matt, Ines, Albie, and Esther—had been brought together by a clandestine government agency because one of them was fated to be the “Chosen One,” prophesized to save the world. With the goal achieved, humankind celebrated the victors and began to mourn their lost loved ones.

Ten years later, though the champions remain celebrities, the world has moved forward and a whole, younger generation doesn’t seem to recall the days of endless fear. But Sloane remembers. It’s impossible for her to forget when the paparazzi haunt her every step just as the Dark One still haunts her dreams. Unlike everyone else, she hasn’t moved on; she’s adrift—no direction, no goals, no purpose. On the eve of the Ten Year Celebration of Peace, a new trauma hits the Chosen: the death of one of their own. And when they gather for the funeral at the enshrined site of their triumph, they discover to their horror that the Dark One’s reign never really ended

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Chosen Ones shows the reader what happens after the war is won. After the hero comes home, how do they return to life and can they return to that normal life. For Sloane, her youth was spent fighting the Dark One. When she and the other chosen ones succeeded, they were left unprepared for their life after their victory. Sloane chooses to isolate herself until another force intervenes. She and her two friends are transported to another world. Another version of Earth where magic is common and the Dark One still lives. Sloane is left questioning if she can claim victory again and is everything like it seems.

Chosen Ones begins slowly. My attention was grabbed as the tale progressed. I liked how the author used newspaper articles, government documents, etc. to give a back story.

The main characters were interesting. Each one handling their unexpected fame in a different way. Some good and some bad. Sloane was a tough, strong female heroine. One who wants the truth even though it will be painful.

I rated this book 4/5 stars!

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Book Reviews

Book Review – The Midnight Lie by Marie Rutkoski @marierutkoski @hodderbooks @hodderscape @readeatretreat #TheMidnightLie

 

Where Nirrim lives, crime abounds, a harsh tribunal rules, and society’s pleasures are reserved for the High Kith. Life in the Ward is grim and punishing. People of her low status are forbidden from sampling sweets or wearing colours. You either follow the rules, or pay a tithe and suffer the consequences.

Nirrim keeps her head down, and a dangerous secret close to her chest.

But then she encounters id, a rakish traveller from far away, who whispers rumours that the High Kith possess magic. Sid tempts Nirrim to seek that magic for herself. But to do that, Nirrim must surrender her old life. She must place her trust in this sly stranger who asks, above all, not to be trusted.

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In the Ward, where half-Kith are impoverished and criminalised for minuscule things, Nirrim is imprisoned for capturing and returning the Elysium bird. In her cell, she meets a traveller named Sid who harbours a secret. Upon their freedom, Sid proffers Nirrim accompany her on her travels so she can uncover magical powers as a bargaining chip against her parents who want her to marry a man.

Nirrim is a great narrator and I loved following her. Her character arc is amazing. Her whole world is being turned upside-down, and she’s realising that everything that she knows to be true is false. Together with the help of a traveller named Sid, they uncover secrets and lies amidst a dreamy world.

The world building is stunning, As you know from the Winner’s Trilogy, Rutkoski builds worlds out of nothing, with complex religions and forced social castes. The Midnight Lie was a stunning addition to a familiar world, set on an island that everyone else has forgotten. It’s a story of realising that you don’t have to do what you’ve always been told to do, just because it’s what you’ve always been told to do. The characters are amazing, the prose gorgeous, and the plot enticing. The Midnight Lie is one of my favourite releases of 2020, and I can’t wait for the next book.

I rated this book 5/5 stars and I highly reccommend it! Thankyou to Hodder Books for gifting me an arc copy!

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Blog Tours · Book Reviews

Blog Tour – Miracle Creek by Angie Kim @angiekimwriter @readeatretreat @hodderbooks @hodderscape #MiracleCreek

Hi guys! Welcome to my stop on the blog tour for Miracle Creek by Angie Kim! This book grabbed my attention straight away with the stunning cover! Check out the blog tour banner below!

In rural Virginia, Young and Pak Yoo run an experimental medical treatment device known as the Miracle Submarine: a pressurized oxygen chamber that patients enter for “dives”, used as an alternative therapy for conditions including autism or infertility. But when the Miracle Submarine mysteriously explodes, killing two people, a dramatic murder trial upends the Yoos’ small community.

Who or what caused the explosion? Was it the mother of one of the patients, who claimed to be sick that day but was smoking down by the creek? Or was it Young and Pak themselves, hoping to cash in on a big insurance payment and send their daughter to college? The ensuing trial uncovers unimaginable secrets from that night – trysts in the woods, mysterious notes, child-abuse charges – as well as tense rivalries and alliances among a group of people driven to extraordinary degrees of desperation and sacrifice.

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Miracle Creek is Angie Kim’s debut novel and I would never have known. Kim knows how to write a suspenseful thriller!
The story is told chapter by chapter through the eyes of each character. It explores the criminal trial that is trying to get to the bottom of why a fire broke out in a privately operated hyperbaric oxygen chamber.

Kim manages to develop fully-formed characters even while switching between points-of-view every chapter. The Yoo family and Elizabeth are particularly powerful portrayals. The descriptions of an immigrant family adjusting to life in the United States, were heartbreaking and interesting to read about. I have a little experience with autism, but I thought Kim’s chapters from Theresa and Elizabeth’s point of view were thought-provoking and emotional.

There are multiple layers to this story. You notice quite early on that nothing is how it seems. Kim peels the layers back one by one so that gradually we get inside her characters skins. By the end I wasn’t entirely surprised with the truth, but I enjoyed piece by piece everything being revealed!

If you enjoy a good psychological thriller then Miracle Creek is a book that you should definitely read!

This book is out now! Check it out below!

I rated this book 4/5 stars!

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Blog Tours · Book Reviews

Blog Tour – Girls Of Paper and Fire by Natasha Ngan @girlinthelens @hodderbooks @hodderscape @readeatretreat #GirlsOfPaperAndFire

Welcome to my stop on the blog tour for the Girls of Paper and Fire paperback! I was kindly sent this copy to review by Kate and Hodder books! Thank you so much, I’ve wanted to read this book since i saw the gorgeous hardback!

 

Lei is a member of the Paper caste, the lowest and most persecuted class of people in Ikhara. Ten years ago, her mother was snatched by the royal guards, and her fate remains unknown. Now, the guards are back and this time it’s Lei they’re after – the girl with the golden eyes, whose rumoured beauty has piqued the king’s interest.

Over weeks of training in the opulent but oppressive palace, Lei and eight other girls learn the skills and charm that befit a king’s consort. There, Lei does the unthinkable – she falls in love. Her forbidden romance becomes enmeshed with an explosive plot that threatens her world’s entire way of life. Lei, still the wide-eyed country girl at heart, must decide how far she’s willing to go for justice and revenge.

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Trigger warning : there are scenes of sexual assault and rape in this book. Please don’t read this novel if that is triggering to you. 

Girls of Paper and Fire is a fantasy novel based in a world where there are three castes; Paper, Steel, and Moon. Our main character Lei is a human girl who struggles against the oppression shown against the Paper (human) class but works in her father’s herb shop, both still reeling from Lei’s mother being taken from them seven years ago. However Lei isn’t meant for an easy life, and her golden eyes catch the attention of a general trying to win back the favour of the King, causing her to be dragged away from her father and taken to the palace as a nominated Paper Girl..

While I loved the whole book, the last hundred pages were, for me, the most gripping. The inevitability of Lei’s circumstance and the tension of events occurring within the palace make this part of the novel the emotional and dark fantasy that it truly is.

I didn’t realise this was a f/f fantasy novel, and my delight at the events that unfolded… Our love interest, Wren, has her own problems to deal with. She’s mysterious, alluring and beautifully written. The romance is so delightfully angsty and is such a slowburn that I couldn’t wait for their next interaction!

Thank you, Natasha Ngan, for this incredibly diverse and complicated novel. I highly anticipate Girls Of Storm and Shadow!!! I reccommend this to any YA fantasy fan who hasn’t had chance to read this book yet, i recommend you catch up before book 2!!

This book is out now in hardback and paperback!

I highly recommend it! I gave it 5/5 stars!

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Blog Tours · Book Reviews

Blog Tour: Muse Of Nightmares by @lainitaylor @hodderbooks @hodderscape #MuseOfNightmares #StrangeTheDreamer

Hello! Welcome to my stop on the Muse Of Nightmares blog tour! I hope you enjoy my review and don’t forget to check out the next stop on the blog tour below!
In the wake of tragedy, neither Lazlo nor Sarai are who they were before. One a god, the other a ghost, they struggle to grasp the new boundaries of their selves as dark-minded Minya holds them hostage, intent on vengeance against Weep.
Lazlo faces an unthinkable choice–save the woman he loves, or everyone else?–while Sarai feels more helpless than ever. But is she? Sometimes, only the direst need can teach us our own depths, and Sarai, the muse of nightmares, has not yet discovered what she’s capable of.
As humans and godspawn reel in the aftermath of the citadel’s near fall, a new foe shatters their fragile hopes, and the mysteries of the Mesarthim are resurrected: Where did the gods come from, and why? What was done with thousands of children born in the citadel nursery? And most important of all, as forgotten doors are opened and new worlds revealed: Must heroes always slay monsters, or is it possible to save them instead?
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“There comes a certain point with a hope or a dream, when you either give it up or give up everything else. And if you choose the dream, if you keep on going, then you can never quit, because it’s all you are.”


“Once upon a time there was a silence that dreamed of becoming a song, and then I found you, and now everything is music.”

This quote perfectly describes what this book means to me, or what all of Laini Tylor’s books means to me, because really, this is nothing less than music.
The 500 pages are everything that is good in the world. The pages are filled with so many emotions; jealousy, hate, revenge, love, devotion.This series is primarily about all kinds of love and Laini Taylor writes love so beautifully. Each and every character in this book is driven by love for certain people or things. We witness sweet, innocent love between lovers, both old and new. We witness love between parents and their children. We witness love between siblings, both by birth and by choice. Love is a very complex emotion, and somehow, Laini Taylor was able to paint a magnificent picture of it, expressing it’s each and every form.
This book also deals with trauma and grief and how it can effect our actions and our choices. The lesson of this book is that grief is awful but getting revenge will not solve all of your problems.

 

Muse of nightmares picks up from right were Strange the dreamer left, with Sarai and Lazlo caught in Minya’s game. Down in the Weep, there is havoc and terror when the news of godspawn still being alive spreads.There is introduction of two new characters, Kora and Nova, who are unseperable. Their mother is gone, and their father wants to sell them to the village elder. They grew up in a village without a mirror, so the only reflection they have ever seen was of each other.
I think we’ve all decided that Lazlo is the most perfect character. While Strange the Dreamer had been about Lazlo and Sarai discovering that hate is not going to solve anything, Muse of Nightmares is the story in which they spread their ideas to others and help them get over the past.
Sarai and Lazlo’s love scenes are the best I’ve read in YA. Laini Taylor captured their tenderness so well. She amplifies their shyness and imagery so well that even simple acts such as holding hands become beautiful. Also, I want Solomon to build me a rainforest in my room..
The crossover with Daughter of Smoke and Bone was amazing. I hope in the future we get a story of Karou and Akiva meeting with Lazlo and Sarai.
Laini Taylor is one of those authors i can always rely on to write a beautiful book. and her stories and characters always fill me with so much happiness. It was utter perfection!!!!!
I rated this book ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
Thank you Hodder for sending me a paperback and hardback version of this book to read and review! It was such a privilege and i can’t thank you enough for this gorgeous book!
The Muse Of Nightmares paperback came out on Apri 4th!
Follow the blog tour below!
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