Showing posts from September, 2016

Review: The Wrath and The Dawn

Title: The Wrath & the Dawn
Author: Renee Ahdieh
Genre: Fantasy, historical fiction, YA

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Goodreads Summary:One Life to One Dawn.
In a land ruled by a murderous boy-king, each dawn brings heartache to a new family. Khalid, the eighteen-year-old Caliph of Khorasan, is a monster. Each night he takes a new bride only to have a silk cord wrapped around her throat come morning. When sixteen-year-old Shahrzad's dearest friend falls victim to Khalid, Shahrzad vows vengeance and volunteers to be his next bride. Shahrzad is determined not only to stay alive, but to end the caliph's reign of terror once and for all.
Night after night, Shahrzad beguiles Khalid, weaving stories that enchant, ensuring her survival, though she knows each dawn could be her last. But something she never expected begins to happen: Khalid is nothing like what she'd imagined him to be. This monster is a boy with a tormented heart. Incredibly, Shahrzad finds herself falling in love. H…


Top Ten Tuesday is a meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish.

This week's theme: Top Ten Fall TBR books
I just checked this out from the library and I've been meaning to read it for years, so this will be the first book on my fall TBR! I read and liked the first book in the series, and I think it's about time I read the second one before I completely forget the first book.
I finally listened to the whole Hamilton soundtrack this summer, and now I'm really excited to learn more about the story behind the musical.
Another book I've been looking forward to for a long time! I hope I can get a copy and read it this fall.
Obviously I will read this at some point in the next few months, but I think I'm going to wait until everyone else has read it and the hype has dissipated a little.
This is going to be my creepy book to read before Halloween! I usually don't handle horror well but this one seems more psychological, so I'm intrigued.

Review: Fall of Giants

Title: Fall of Giants
Author: Ken Follett
Genre: Historical fiction

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Goodreads Summary:This is an epic of love, hatred, war and revolution. This is a huge novel that follows five families through the world-shaking dramas of the First World War, the Russian Revolution, and the struggle for votes for women.
It is 1911. The Coronation Day of King George V. The Williams, a Welsh coal-mining family, is linked by romance and enmity to the Fitzherberts, aristocratic coal-mine owners. Lady Maud Fitzherbert falls in love with Walter von Ulrich, a spy at the German Embassy in London. Their destiny is entangled with that of an ambitious young aide to U.S. President Woodrow Wilson and to two orphaned Russian brothers, whose plans to emigrate to America fall foul of war, conscription and revolution. In a plot of unfolding drama and intriguing complexity, "Fall Of Giants" moves seamlessly from Washington to St Petersburg, from the dirt and danger of a coal mine to the…

ARC Review: The Rise of Io

Title: The Rise of Io
Author: Wesley Chu
Genre: Science fiction

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Goodreads Summary:Ella Patel – thief, con-artist and smuggler – is in the wrong place at the wrong time. One night, on the border of a demilitarized zone run by the body-swapping alien invaders, she happens upon a man and woman being chased by a group of assailants. The man freezes, leaving the woman to fight off five attackers at once, before succumbing. As she dies, to both Ella and the man’s surprise, the sparkling light that rises from the woman enters Ella, instead of the man. She soon realizes she’s been inhabited by Io, a low-ranking Quasing who was involved in some of the worst decisions in history. Now Ella must now help the alien presence to complete her mission and investigate a rash of murders in the border states that maintain the frail peace.
With the Prophus assigned to help her seemingly wanting to stab her in the back, and the enemy Genjix hunting her, Ella must also deal with Io’s …

Review: Water for Elephants

Title: Water for Elephants
Author: Sara Gruen
Genre: Contemporary, historical fiction

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Goodreads Summary:Orphaned, penniless, Jacob Jankowski jumps a freight train in the dark, and in that instant, transforms his future.
By morning, he's landed a job with the Flying Squadron of the Benzini Brothers Most Spectacular Show on Earth. By nightfall, he's in love.
In an America made colourless by prohibition and the Depression, the circus is a refuge of sequins and sensuality. But behind the glamour lies a darker world, where both animals and men are dispensable. Where falling in love is the most dangerous act of all... 

I don't often read contemporary fiction, because I usually find it dull compared to my usual sci-fi and fantasy. I had heard a lot of good things about this book, though, so I decided to give it a shot. I read it on audiobook, and I thought the narrator for younger Jacob was great. Older Jacob's voice definitely sounded like a 90-something…

Review: Jonathan Strange & Mr. Norrell

Title: Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell
Author: Susanna Clarke
Genre: Fantasy, historical fiction

My rating: 4.5 of 5 stars

Goodreads Summary:At the dawn of the nineteenth century, two very different magicians emerge to change England's history. In the year 1806, with the Napoleonic Wars raging on land and sea, most people believe magic to be long dead in England--until the reclusive Mr Norrell reveals his powers, and becomes a celebrity overnight.
Soon, another practicing magician comes forth: the young, handsome, and daring Jonathan Strange. He becomes Norrell's student, and they join forces in the war against France. But Strange is increasingly drawn to the wildest, most perilous forms of magic, straining his partnership with Norrell, and putting at risk everything else he holds dear. 

This book was almost painfully slow at first but once it started to pick up, I really enjoyed it! Jonathan Strange and Mr. Norrell is unlike any other fantasy book I've read. It's odd …

TTT: Top Ten Historical Fiction Faves

Top Ten Tuesday is a meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish.

This week's theme: Top Ten Historical Fiction books
Fantasy is my favorite genre, and I also read and love a lot of science fiction, but I figured I would talk about another genre that I really enjoy but don't often wax poetic about on my blog. Historical fiction/alternative histories are really fun for me because I enjoy learning about other eras in our history and imaging what it might have been like to live there. In a way it's kind of like fantasy: escaping into a different time and place than the real world. Here are some of my favorite historical fiction books!

One of my favorite books, this one makes me cry every time. It's such a beautiful story about friendship and resilience and even though war is brutal, it also shows us the human side of things.
This was one of those books I picked up and nearly gasped as I read the prologue because it was just so perfect. It's narrated by Death itself, and I …

Review: Truthwitch

Title: Truthwitch
Author: Susan Dennard
Genre: Fantasy, YA

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Goodreads Summary:In a continent on the edge of war, two witches hold its fate in their hands.
Young witches Safiya and Iseult have a habit of finding trouble. After clashing with a powerful Guildmaster and his ruthless Bloodwitch bodyguard, the friends are forced to flee their home.
Safi must avoid capture at all costs as she's a rare Truthwitch, able to discern truth from lies. Many would kill for her magic, so Safi must keep it hidden - lest she be used in the struggle between empires. And Iseult's true powers are hidden even from herself.
In a chance encounter at Court, Safi meets Prince Merik and makes him a reluctant ally. However, his help may not slow down the Bloodwitch now hot on the girls' heels. All Safi and Iseult want is their freedom, but danger lies ahead. With war coming, treaties breaking and a magical contagion sweeping the land, the friends will have to fight emperors and mer…

Review: Six of Crows

Title: Six of Crows
Author: Leigh Bardugo
Genre: Fantasy

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Goodreads Summary:Ketterdam: a bustling hub of international trade where anything can be had for the right price—and no one knows that better than criminal prodigy Kaz Brekker. Kaz is offered a chance at a deadly heist that could make him rich beyond his wildest dreams. But he can't pull it off alone...
A convict with a thirst for revenge.
A sharpshooter who can't walk away from a wager.
A runaway with a privileged past.
A spy known as the Wraith.
A Heartrender using her magic to survive the slums.
A thief with a gift for unlikely escapes.
Kaz's crew are the only ones who might stand between the world and destruction—if they don't kill each other first.

It's no secret that I'm a sucker for stories about cons and heists. My favorite books include The Lies of Locke Lamora and The Final Empire after all! I really enjoy the moral ambiguity that comes with rooting for a bunch of roguish but usu…