Saturday, September 19, 2015

Queen of Shadows by Sarah J. Maas


Queen of Shadows (Throne of Glass, #4)Queen of Shadows by Sarah J Maas

Source: Pre-ordered from Books of Wonder

Genre: Fantasy, Dystopian

Everyone Celaena Sardothien loves has been taken from her. But she's at last returned to the empire—for vengeance, to rescue her once-glorious kingdom, and to confront the shadows of her past . . .
She will fight for her cousin, a warrior prepared to die just to see her again. She will fight for her friend, a young man trapped in an unspeakable prison. And she will fight for her people, enslaved to a brutal king and awaiting their lost queen's triumphant return.
Celaena’s epic journey has captured the hearts and imaginations of millions across the globe. This fourth volume will hold readers rapt as Celaena’s story builds to a passionate, agonizing crescendo that might just shatter her world.



Queen of Shadows was everything that I was waiting for. I know some people were disappointed, but not this girl!

Okay so, the plot might have dragged a small teeny tiny bit at the beginning of the novel, but it quickly picked up. It was like every chapter would end in some way that was heart-wrenching and then would either be resolved within the next chapter or continued to be a dagger in your heart for the rest of the book until the climax. The ending was a little strange. I thought the book should’ve ended closer after the big thing (can’t spoil it haha) instead of the happy (sorta) ending that drew out a little to show the aftermath. Other than that, I was completely enthralled by the intense plot.

My goodness, the characters. To me, I was really amazed and in awe at the end when I considered what everyone had been through and how each character had changed throughout the 4 books and who they were now. Some people are complaining about how out of character Chaol was, but I feel as if his “new” character was a result of what happened. It changed him. Thus, the character that acts in different ways than in the first book. I would also like to personally thank Sarah J Maas for creating strong female and male characters, side characters alike. Maas has really fleshed out all of her characters in this book.

The suspense, mystery, and action alone would’ve allowed me to love this book alone. Maas wrote in such a way that we didn’t even know everything that Aelin was doing even though she’s the main character and we experience her POV quite often. I sorta felt like Aedion when all was revealed.

Adarlan is a seriously corrupted place. Even more is hiding under the surface and QoS was a fantastic way to continue the series. I can’t wait another year!




Here, I basically want to fangirl about the characters because why not?

Chaol- Personally, I feel bad for Chaol in general. In HoF, pretty much his whole life was shown to be a lie and a farce. So, Chaol has to redefine who he is as a person and decide what the purpose of his life will be. Plus, Chaol has to  figure out how to not be prejudice against this magic. Also, his heart has been ripped out of his chest as his lover has turned out to have magic, which he has a major problem with, and also be the enemy to his best friend’s future kingdom, which is basically what his whole life revolves around. Pretty much redoing his outlook on life and trying to fix all of this was really hard for Chaol. I’ve heard a lot of people complain that Chaol is “out of character,” but he isn’t. He’s just grown to be a different character than he was before, which makes sense with all the above. However, these things do not excuse him from being a complete jerk to Aelin. It constantly grated on my nerves to see them ALWAYS argue when they used to be *so* close.

Aelin- Aelin really grew up. No longer can she be Celaena Sardothien. Aelin had to become the queen she rightfully is. Sometimes, I felt that she could be a little too harsh, but overall, seriously loved the girl power that she was exuding. Also, I thought it was super fascinating to see how different she had become since ToG when she had to act like her old self to claim Arobynn’s estate. I never realized how completely different Aelin was from Celaena until then. Plus, it was pretty cool how Maas had Aelin “hide” some of the stuff that she was doing, even though we read Aelin’s POV quite often. I can’t wait to see how she continues to develop in the last two books of the series.

Lysandra- Lysandra was such a badass. She’s amazing, has a fiery spirit, and is determined to make something meaningful out of her life, despite everything that’s happened to her. #friendshipgoals

Manon, Nesryn, and Kaltain- I love love love all the girl power in QoS. All these lovely female side characters weren’t flat and they weren’t boring. Usually when I read books with tons of POVs, I always want to read the main character’s instead of side characters. This was not the case with QoS. I totally love Manon. Her character has grown in likeability soooo much since we were first introduced to her.

Dorian- OMG I felt SOO bad for Dorian. His chapters made me INCREDIBLY sad!! I just wanted to save and protect my baby throughout the whole novel. And also wrap him up in a blanket and tell him that everything is okay. Now he has to live with everything he’s done, which is UNFAIR because he didn’t have any control over what he was doing. #cries

Rowan- yes. that is all.

Aelin + Rowan- I went into this book being a Chaol + Aelin shipper. I came out of it being a Rowan + Aelin shipper. They have so much chemistry and bond so much. It’s perfect. I can’t really express how much I love their relationship. However, it won’t be the end of the world if they don’t end up together at the end.



Monday, September 14, 2015

Thursday, September 10, 2015

Rites of Passage by Joy N. Hensley

Rites of Passage by Joy N. Hensley

Genre: Contemporary, Boarding School

Source: Library

Rating: 4/5 Stars

 Rites of Passage Sam McKenna’s never turned down a dare. And she's not going to start with the last one her brother gave her before he died.
So Sam joins the first-ever class of girls at the prestigious Denmark Military Academy. She’s expecting push-ups and long runs, rope climbing and mud-crawling. As a military brat, she can handle an obstacle course just as well as the boys. She's even expecting the hostility she gets from some of the cadets who don’t think girls belong there. What she’s not expecting is her fiery attraction to her drill sergeant. But dating is strictly forbidden and Sam won't risk her future, or the dare, on something so petty... no matter how much she wants him.
As Sam struggles to prove herself, she discovers that some of the boys don’t just want her gone—they will stop at nothing to drive her out. When their petty threats turn to brutal hazing, bleeding into every corner of her life, she realizes they are not acting alone. A decades-old secret society is alive and active… and determined to force her out.
At any cost.
Now time's running short. Sam must decide who she can trust... and choosing the wrong person could have deadly consequences.


Reasons to Read:

  1. Sam!! Sam’s characterization is very realistic! She has flaws and insecurities, and I commend Hensley for creating such a vivid, life-like character.
  2. Mystery, Intrigue, Secrets galore! This one pretty much explains itself. Rites of Passage was very action-packed and I loved the mystery element to the book. Everything wasn’t as it seemed (with the exception of a few obvious twists, but I can forgive :) )
  3. Writing Style Hensley’s writing is a really nice blend of character and plot focus. I know that I’m more character based, but this combo was perfect for Rites of Passage
  4. Setting Oh my gosh! I couldn’t even begin to imagine going to the Academy. It had a small (I repeat, small) feel of boarding school (which always reminds me of Harry Potter, so good memories!), but also a much more intense feeling than the standard boarding school setting.
  5. SHIP!!! I’m just going to put out there that I’m a sucker for romances. I love them. So, the slightly disturbing aspect of their relationship was that I frequently forgot that they were the same age because he was her drill sergeant. Besides that, the tension and chemistry was absolutely irresistible!

Monday, September 7, 2015

Wednesday, September 2, 2015

The Walled City by Ryan Graudin

The Walled City by Ryan Graudin

Genre: Dystopian

Source: Library

Rating: 5/5 Stars


The Walled City

730. That's how many days I've been trapped.
18. That's how many days I have left to find a way out.
DAI, trying to escape a haunting past, traffics drugs for the most ruthless kingpin in the Walled City. But in order to find the key to his freedom, he needs help from someone with the power to be invisible....
JIN hides under the radar, afraid the wild street gangs will discover her biggest secret: Jin passes as a boy to stay safe. Still, every chance she gets, she searches for her lost sister....
MEI YEE has been trapped in a brothel for the past two years, dreaming of getting out while watching the girls who try fail one by one. She's about to give up, when one day she sees an unexpected face at her window.....


Often opinion on more than two POVs:

no-dr who gif

Walled Cities:

superman meh gif

Pulling a Mulan:

supernatural dude yes gif


Opinion on more than two POVs:

clapping gif

Walled Cites:

emma stone screaming gif

Pulling a Mulan:

hell to the yeah gif

Dai + Mei Yee:

supernatural excited gif

Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Mini Reviews!


So, I’ve been super busy this July (1 camp + 2 vacations) and have some books that I’ve read during this month that I want to do some sort of review type thing and I figured this would be a great way to do that!

So, without further ado…I present the July Mini Reviews---posted in August!

The Start of Me and You by Emery Lord

5/5 Stars

The Start of Me and YouThe Start of Me and You was a perfect long car ride read. Chock full of well fleshed out characters and a stimulating plot, it was a sweet and delightful read. Paige is such a relatable character-not exactly the tragedy she’s experienced, but more like the personality itself. It reminds me of some of my friends. Her character growth is phenomenal and beautiful. Much like the teenage experience. The plot was exciting and continuously moving. Plus, the romance was adorable. I absolutely loved it. Basically, The Start of Me and You was the exact cutesy, contemporary read I was waiting for.




The Wrong Side of Right by Jenn Marie Thorne

4/5 Stars

The Wrong Side of Right

Like, The Start of Me and You, The Wrong Side of Right was a great contemporary read. I loved the political drama that was intertwined with Kate’s personal journey to finding herself. Kate also had a compelling transformation throughout the book; She began out being a whiny, weak, self-absorbed teen girl, but by the end she stands up for herself and is less whiny. One of the stand-outs of this book was the politics. I haven’t read (that I recall at this moment haha) any YA novel that addresses politics in this way. I liked how it portrayed her father and how that constantly changed as Kate grew and acknowledged the truth. The one thing I could do without was the end, particularly concerning the romance. Without giving anything away, I will say that the resolution felt unrealistic and the author’s way of appeasing the readers (if that makes any sense?). The final thing (I can’t say in fear of spoilers) felt so out of character and cheesy. Overall, an enticing and adorable read.


Saint Anything by Sarah Dessen

3.5/5 Stars

Saint Anything

Unfortunately, I was underwhelmed by this Dessen novel. I really liked the plot and eventual character development, but I *really* hated how Sydney was soo whiny. The dynamic between Mac and Sydney and the friendships she has with the rest of the Chathams are compelling and interesting. The relationships were definitely a major plus in the book. The undertone of hope in the face of overwhelming despair is beautiful and inspiring. Overall, I enjoyed Saint Anything, but was really irked by Sydney.

Monday, August 3, 2015

Magonia by Maria Dahvana Headley

Magonia by Maria Dahvana Headley

Genre: Sci-Fy, Fantasy

Source: Library

Rating: 4.5/5 Stars


Aza Ray is drowning in thin air.
Since she was a baby, Aza has suffered from a mysterious lung disease that makes it ever harder for her to breathe, to speak—to live.
So when Aza catches a glimpse of a ship in the sky, her family chalks it up to a cruel side effect of her medication. But Aza doesn't think this is a hallucination. She can hear someone on the ship calling her name.
Only her best friend, Jason, listens. Jason, who’s always been there. Jason, for whom she might have more-than-friendly feelings. But before Aza can consider that thrilling idea, something goes terribly wrong. Aza is lost to our world—and found, by another. Magonia.
Above the clouds, in a land of trading ships, Aza is not the weak and dying thing she was. In Magonia, she can breathe for the first time. Better, she has immense power—and as she navigates her new life, she discovers that war is coming. Magonia and Earth are on the cusp of a reckoning. And in Aza’s hands lies the fate of the whole of humanity—including the boy who loves her. Where do her loyalties lie?


Gripping. Powerful

Magonia was a thrilling read. It’s unique to a majority of what I’ve ever seen come out of the sci-fy and fantasy genres.

Aza is a stunning character. She struggles a lot with her identity and who she is once she enters Magonia. This is incredibly accurate to what real people experience and go through as they grow up. The sheer character development earns Magonia at least 3.5 Stars by itself.

"I don't think of the sky as any kind of heaven item. I think of it as a bunch of gases and faraway echoes of things that used to be on fire"-Maria Dahvana Headley

The idea of Magonia, the fantastical and magical element to the story, is, to simply put it, stellar. Headley weaves and intertwines magic in such a way that it entraps you. I’m blown away by the simplistic and artful way that Headley introduces and explains the legend of Magonia and the true identity of Aza.

Headley’s writing style was what elevated this book to one of my favorites.

It was amazing! There are no words that I could use that would convey a fraction of the *beauty* of her writing and how much I LOVED it. This writing style is one of my favorites of all.time.

"I can't imagine a universe in which I try to unlove her"-Maria Dahvana Headley

However, I found the romance to be lackluster and also the relationship between Aza and a certain person (spoiler-free!). The relationships felt like they lacked background and concrete evidence to support the relationships. The romance was meh. I really just didn’t sense a chemistry between the two. I was yearning for a solid friendship, but received a subpar romance instead.

Despite a few blips, Magonia is truly a gem in the fantasy and magical realism genres. Headley is a master at writing beautifully and artfully.