Thursday, 10 December 2020

The Court of Miracles by Kester Grant


In the violent urban jungle of an alternate 1828 Paris, the French Revolution has failed and the city is divided between merciless royalty and nine underworld criminal guilds, known as the Court of Miracles. Eponine (Nina) Thénardier is a talented cat burglar and member of the Thieves Guild. Nina's life is midnight robberies, avoiding her father's fists, and watching over her naïve adopted sister, Cosette (Ettie).

When Ettie attracts the eye of the Tiger--the ruthless lord of the Guild of Flesh--Nina is caught in a desperate race to keep the younger girl safe. Her vow takes her from the city's dark underbelly to the glittering court of Louis XVII. And it also forces Nina to make a terrible choice--protect Ettie and set off a brutal war between the guilds, or forever lose her sister to the Tiger.

I am a big fan of Les Miserables so I was super excited to get into this book. I am not sure if this helped or hindered me though to be honest. The names were a little confusing in some points but the further I got into the book the less it mattered to me. I do think this story would have been easier to follow if the characters had their own names. 
The story didnt really have anything to do with Les Miserable except for one mention at the barricades and even then the story was changed but the book isnt exactly a retelling.

I loved the world building and felt like I could easily envision the places that the story was describing. I like that there were different aspects of the story to show the different social classes ad the guilds were super interesting. 

I feel like this book read in three parts for me, I am not sure if that was the intention. I loved the first and the third parts and I was a little lost during the middle parts. I am not sure how all of these people all of a sudden owe Nina so much that they would die for her and go against their laws and guilds.

I would have loved to read more about the relationships between different characters and their back stories. Montparnasse as an example. 

I know I have pointed out a bunch of things that are not great but I actually did enjoy the book. I think that it had a really interesting stories and there were points of the book that I hadnt read anything like that before I would like to see how the second book goes and see if any of the relationships develop. 

I would like to thank NetGalley for giving me this book in exchange for an honest review

Thanks For Reading 
Em x

Tuesday, 27 October 2020

All You Hold On To (Anderson Creek # 1) by K.T. Egan


Aspiring author Roxanne Wortham lives a comfortable life in Las Vegas. She spends her days at her nine-to-five job and comes home to her boyfriend, Ethan, and an unfinished novel that she can’t seem to crack. Her life is simple— that is, until she gets a phone call saying that her childhood best friend and ex-boyfriend, Maverick Sterling, has been in a near-fatal car crash.

As Roxanne discovers that she still has power of attorney over his affairs, she places her life on hold and rushes to Maverick’s side in Scranton, Pennsylvania. While helping him to recover, memories of childhood and old relationships resurface, making it difficult for Roxanne to balance her new life with her old one. Roxanne is left to sort through complicated feelings from her past alongside the realization that Maverick may still have feelings for her— and even worse, she may still have feelings for him, too.

This story follows a group of childhood friends into adulthood, Focusing on Roxanne and Maverick and their love story. Roxanne and Maverick were totally in love with each other until they broke up and Roxanne moved to vegas and got a new boyfriend. 

The story was a cute easy read without too many twists and turns, this allowed me to really get into their world and explore the friendships between the group. I would have loved to learn a little more about the characters and although I was invested in the relationship between Roxanne and Maverick I don't feel like I really got to know them that well. 
The supporting characters were not really developed into individual people that could exist without the main characters so maybe the next books will focus on somebody else. 

I liked the style of writing in this book and did find it pretty easy to read. I really like the cosy vibes of the cover too. I dont think I will be rushing to pick up the next book in the series but it definitely has potential. 

I would like to thank NetGalley for providing this book in exchange of an honest review. 

Thanks For Reading

Em x

Friday, 23 October 2020

The Song Rising (The Bone Season #3) by Samantha Shannon

This is the third book in The Bone Season series and you all know that I was a massive fan of the first two books. I want to try and review this book without giving too much away but if you havent read the first two books in this series maybe give this review a miss. 

The first thing I want to mention is the covers in this series have changed and that is really annoying. Like a lot of readers, I like it when books match on my bookshelf but never mind I suppose.  

Book three picks up where book 2 left off which is nice especially as it was fairly recently that I read book 2. I struggled quite a lot to get into the third book and I think it was a a lot slower than I wanted it to be. 

Paige and her gang travel around the UK more in this book and it was fun to read about the different places and how they slot into place within the world. 

This book wasnt my favourite in the series but I am still really enjoying the series and I am excited to see where the next book takes us. 

Thanks For Reading 

Em x

Thursday, 8 October 2020

For Holly by Tanya Byrne

Lola Durand hates her stepmother. It's a cliché but it's true.
Lola Durand can't get through to her father. He never wants to talk about the things that matter: why they had to move to Paris, why he had to marry evil Agatha, and how they can get through the heartache of her mother's death together.
If he won't listen, she'll show him. She'll show him the truth about his new wife and then her life can go back to normal, just the way she likes it.
Lola Durand knows a secret about her stepmother. She's going to share it.

For Holly wasn't the top of my list to pick up because I don't really find the cover very appealing but this is one of those don't judge a book by its cover moments. 
Lola is a really interesting young lady, she has recently lost her mother in a terrible accident and her whole world was turned upside down. Lolas dad married Agatha who lives in Paris and that is where Lola finds herself living. Lola hates everything about living in Paris or at least she things that she does. 
This story follows Lola in a complicated journey of revenge and growth. 

The characters in this story are so diverse, I really enjoyed meeting all of them well except for Agatha. 

I am not normally interested in mystery books but this one was fast paced and kept me really interested. The book is written in the style of a diary which definitely helped with the pacing. The book covers Lolas grief and a couple of tragedies. 

Growing up my family used to take many trips to France so the snippets of french conversation was a welcome treat and for the bits that I was unable to understand Lola cleared up in English for us.    

I really enjoyed this story and I would recommend it for an interesting quick read. 

Thanks For Reading 

Em x

Thursday, 1 October 2020

Reflections by Elizabeth Lim


When Captain Shang is mortally wounded by Shan Yu in battle, Mulan must travel to the Underworld, Diyu, in order to save him from certain death. But King Yama, the ruler of Diyu, is not willing to give Shang up easily. With the help of Shang's great lion guardian ShiShi, Mulan must traverse Diyu to find Shang's spirit, face harrowing obstacles, and leave by sunrise⁠—or become King Yama's prisoner forever. Moreover, Mulan is still disguised as the soldier called Ping, wrestling with the decision to reveal her true identity to her closest friend. Will Mulan be able to save Shang before it's too late? Will he ever be able to trust her again? Or will she lose him--and be lost in the Underworld⁠—forever?

I have had this book on my book shelf for a really long time and the Twisted Tales overall have been a little bit hit of miss for me. This one was a total miss, I think in fact it is my lowest rated book so far this year. I was honestly so disappointed. 

 I have been using a random number generator to pick the books that I read and this one came up. Honestly when it came out I didnt really have a preference either way. I have recently watched the Live action Mulan and it was very middle of the road so I thought that this would at least be better than that. 

I honestly just didnt get it. Ping goes against orders to win the war against the Hans but Captain Shang gets very injured in the process, this leaves Mulan feeling guilty so she agrees to go into the underworld to bring Shang back to the land of the living. 

In theory the underworld part of the story should have been really interesting and fast paced but for me it was exactly the opposite. The rooms in the underworld were all really similar to one another and nothing particularly interesting happened until the end of the book. 

It surprises me that the book has such good reviews on GoodReads because I just couldnt connect with the story at all. 

I think if you are a big fan of Mulan then you will probably really like it but if you find her kind of meh then give it a miss and read something else. 

Thanks for Reading 

Em x

Thursday, 24 September 2020

The Cup and the Prince by Day Leitao : Kingdom of curses and shadows book 1


One prince wants her out.
Another wants her as a pawn.
Someone wants her dead.
Zora wants to win the cup and tell them all to screw themselves.
Yes, 17-year-old Zora cheated her way into the Royal Games, but it was for a very good reason. Her ex-boyfriend thought she couldn't attain glory on her own. Just because she was a girl. And he was the real cheater. So she took his place.
Now she's competing for the legendary Blood Cup, representing the Dark Valley. It's her chance to prove her worth and bring glory for her people. If she wins, of course.
But winning is far from easy. The younger prince thinks she's a fragile damsel who doesn't belong in the competition. Determined to eliminate her at all costs, he's stacking the challenges against her. Zora hates him, hates him, hates him, and will do anything to prove him wrong.
The older prince is helping her, but the cost is getting Zora entangled in dangerous flirting games. Flirting, the last thing she wanted.

And then there's someone trying to kill her.

Lets start this review with the cover. The art on the cover of this book is absolutely stunning and depicts Zora almost exactly as I imagined. 
I wasn't expecting too much from this story, I thought it might just be a fun read but I was so surprised. I really enjoyed the story and I cant wait for the second instalment of this series. 

First I love that Zora is a woman scorned and the whole story kind of starts off as a revenge mission to show her cheating boyfriend that she is better than him. Zora is smart, strong and brave she makes a refreshing change from some of the needy heroines that we get in some YA books. I always love a book that has some royalty in it so two princes and a king is a fun scenario. 

The plot was also really interesting I thought it was kind of a mix between the selection by Kiera Cass and The Tri-wizard tournament from Harry Potter with a little bit of Hunger Games. There is a little bit of magic and the hint of a bigger world that will be built throughout the series.

It was a really fun fast read that I wizzed through it. 

In Conclusion I loved everything about this book. 

Thank You to NetGalley, Day Leitao and Sparkly Wave Publishers for providing an Arc copy in exchange for an honest review.

Thank You for reading

Monday, 21 September 2020

Lady Midnight by Cassandra Clare (The Dark Artifices #1)


The Shadowhunters of Los Angeles star in the first novel in Cassandra Clare’s newest series, The Dark Artifices, a sequel to the internationally bestselling Mortal Instruments series. Lady Midnight is a Shadowhunters novel.
It’s been five years since the events of City of Heavenly Fire that brought the Shadowhunters to the brink of oblivion. Emma Carstairs is no longer a child in mourning, but a young woman bent on discovering what killed her parents and avenging her losses.
Together with her parabatai Julian Blackthorn, Emma must learn to trust her head and her heart as she investigates a demonic plot that stretches across Los Angeles, from the Sunset Strip to the enchanted sea that pounds the beaches of Santa Monica. If only her heart didn’t lead her in treacherous directions…
Making things even more complicated, Julian’s brother Mark—who was captured by the faeries five years ago—has been returned as a bargaining chip. The faeries are desperate to find out who is murdering their kind—and they need the Shadowhunters’ help to do it. But time works differently in faerie, so Mark has barely aged and doesn’t recognize his family. Can he ever truly return to them? Will the faeries really allow it?
Glitz, glamours, and Shadowhunters abound in this heartrending opening to Cassandra Clare’s Dark Artifices series.

I must admit that I have had Lady Midnight sat on my bookshelf for a really long time and with the size of the book and the Shadowhunter hangover that I was in after the previous series I wasn't really in any rush to pick it up. I finally did start it and although it is intimidating the 698 pages are a pretty speedy read. 

I might be a little bit biased because the main character is called Emma but I liked some of these characters better than the originals, there were also characters I didnt like so much. 
The story mainly follows Emma and Julian who I did like. I thought the relationship between Julian and Emma was really sweet, I liked reading about how it grew slowly into something confusing that they need to discover. 
I personally thought there were too many younger siblings. My focus was shifted from the story to the chaos that was going on in the institute but not in a good way. I cant remember enough about any of the children for them to be important to me and their ages were really confusing, we treated some of them like babies and then find out that they are teenagers. 
Mark was a really interesting character me it was nice that he wasnt the perfect shadow hunter instantly. I liked hearing more about the fairies and the wild hunt. 
We even got a guest appearance from Magnus Bane!
The characters in this book have been through so much and they came out stronger and wiser. I love that Emma isn't a weak female character like is often portrayed in books. 

The storyline about the parabatai laws was really interesting because this wasnt something that had been discussed in the previous series and I think it would have been important to mention. I am really interested to see where this story goes though. 

I personally enjoyed this more than I did the City of bones series but I am not sure if that will still be the case when I have finished the series. I dont even think that you need to have read the City of Bones series to get into this series. 

I would 100% recommend this book. I loved it. 

Thanks for Reading
Em x