ARC Review | The Bear and the Nightingale by Katherine Arden

ARC Review | The Bear and the Nightingale by Katherine Arden

  “All my life,” she said, “I have been told ‘go’ and ‘come.’ I am told how I will live, and I am told how I must die. I must be a man’s servant and a mare for his pleasure, or I must hide myself behind walls and surrender my flesh to a cold, silent god. I would walk into the jaws of hell itself, if it were a path of my own choosing. I would rather die tomorrow in the forest than live a hundred years of the life appointed me.” This was a enjoyable read; lush and atmospheric. It took me a while to get into it, but once things really start happening you find yourself swept away with the story. One thing though, this novel is definitely not meant to be read in one burst, it works best to savor this book in little pieces as you go along. I loved the main character, Vasilisa Petrovna – her fierceness, her stubbornness, her love and loyalty to her family and the world around her. The different familial relationships were all complicated, interesting, and (at times) rather lovely. I loved how nuanced the characters were – they were not […]

ARC Review | The Movie Version by Emma Wunsch

ARC Review | The Movie Version by Emma Wunsch

**PS: POTENTIAL SPOILERS AHEAD** Read the first paragraph under “all the words” before deciding to venture further! The Movie Version by Emma Wunsch Published by Amulet Books on October 11, 2016 Genres: Contemporary, Young Adult Source: Paperback ARC, BEA Length: 368 pgs Rating: ★★★★★ GR Rating: 3.33★ What It’s About: A whip-smart, heart-wrenching debut YA novel about first love, first loss, and filmmaking that will delight fans of Jandy Nelson and Jennifer Niven: In the movie version of Amelia’s life, the roles have always been clear. Her older brother, Toby: definitely the Star. As popular with the stoners as he is with the cheerleaders, Toby is someone you’d pay ten bucks to watch sweep Battle of the Bands and build a “beach party” in the bathroom. As for Amelia? She’s Toby Anderson’s Younger Sister. She’s perfectly happy to watch Toby’s hijinks from the sidelines, when she’s not engrossed in one of her elaborately themed Netflix movie marathons. But recently Toby’s been acting in a very non-movie-version way. He’s stopped hanging out with his horde of friends and started obsessively journaling and disappearing for days at a time. Amelia doesn’t know what’s happened to her awesome older brother, or who this strange actor is that’s taken […]

ARC Review | This Adventure Ends by Emma Mills

ARC Review | This Adventure Ends by Emma Mills

This Adventure Ends by Emma Mills Published by Henry, Holt & Co. on October 4, 2016 Genres: Contemporary, Young Adult Source: Paperback ARC, Gifted from Blogger Length: 320 pgs Rating: ★★★★ GR Rating: 4.24★ What It’s About: Sloane isn’t expecting to fall in with a group of friends when she moves from New York to Florida—especially not a group of friends so intense, so in love, so all-consuming. Yet that’s exactly what happens. Sloane becomes closest to Vera, a social-media star who lights up any room, and Gabe, Vera’s twin brother and the most serious person Sloane’s ever met. When a beloved painting by the twins’ late mother goes missing, Sloane takes on the responsibility of tracking it down, a journey that takes her across state lines—and ever deeper into the twins’ lives. Filled with intense and important friendships, a wonderful warts-and-all family, shiveringly good romantic developments, and sharp, witty dialogue, this story is about finding the people you never knew you needed. Ok, it’s not exactly perfect considering, well, a lot of things … but there’s just something in this gif with the FRIENDS FOREVER mixed with #squadgoals that got to me! I really enjoyed this book for a number of reasons, the main […]

Audio Review | And I Darken by Kiersten White

Audio Review | And I Darken by Kiersten White

And I Darken by Kiersten White Published: 06/28/16 by Delacorte Press Source: Audio, Audible Length: 13 hours, 26 minutes Genres: Young Adult, Alternate History Date Read: 07/11 – 07/14/2016 GR Rating: 3.97★ My Rating: 4.5★ What It’s About: No one expects a princess to be brutal. And Lada Dragwlya likes it that way. Ever since she and her gentle younger brother, Radu, were wrenched from their homeland of Wallachia and abandoned by their father to be raised in the Ottoman courts, Lada has known that being ruthless is the key to survival. She and Radu are doomed to act as pawns in a vicious game, an unseen sword hovering over their every move. For the lineage that makes them special also makes them targets. Lada despises the Ottomans and bides her time, planning her vengeance for the day when she can return to Wallachia and claim her birthright. Radu longs only for a place where he feels safe. And when they meet Mehmed, the defiant and lonely son of the sultan, Radu feels that he’s made a true friend—and Lada wonders if she’s finally found someone worthy of her passion. But Mehmed is heir to the very empire that Lada has sworn to fight against—and […]

Series Review | The Warriors by Erin Hunter

Series Review | The Warriors by Erin Hunter

Into The Wild | Fire & Ice | Forest of Secrets | Rising Storm | Dangerous Path | Darkest Hour I read this series alongside my brothers when they were younger, and I remembered it being so completely absorbing. (Also, there’s nothing like your senior year AP Calc teacher asking you what you are reading under the desk and having to show the class that it’s a book about tribes of warrior cats living in the forest …) I was in a bit of a slump earlier this summer, and I have a friend whose daughter has just started this series and I was just REALLY itching to get back into this world … so I decided to reread all of them. It turned out to be one of the best decisions I made all summer, because I seriously forgot how much I loved these books and the cats within them. It seems like such a silly thing for a woman who is just shy of her 30th birthday to get all absorbed in BUT YOU JUST DON’T UNDERSTAND UNTIL YOU’VE READ THEM. Or maybe I’m just a really nostalgic reader, who knows?! Either way, I seriously want to get at […]

Audio Review | Kenny and The Dragon by Tony DiTerlizzi

Audio Review | Kenny and The Dragon by Tony DiTerlizzi

Kenny & The Dragon by Tony DiTerlizzi Published: 08/05/08 by Simon & Schuster for Young Readers Source: Audio, Audible Length: 2 hours, 17 minutes Genres: Middle Grade, Fantasy, Dragons Date Read: 07/08 – 07/09/2016 GR Rating: 3.91★ My Rating: 4★ What It’s About: What do you do when your new best buddy has been designated a scourge by the community and marked for imminent extermination? Just ask Kenny Rabbit. When the simple folks in the sleepy little village of Roundbrook catch wind that there’s a dragon running loose in the countryside, they get the wrong idea and the stage is set for a fight to the death. So it’s up to Kenny to give his neighbors front-row seats to one of the best-known battles in history — the legendary showdown between St. George and the dragon — without losing a friend in the fray. So much of this book is utter perfection and it’s because it’s whimsy and dragons and friendship and book love and the pluckiest little rabbit main character you ever did see. I was besotted with Kenny Rabbit and his entire family from the first few minutes. I love how much Kenny loved school and homework and reading, and I loved […]

ARC Review | Kingdom of Ash and Briars by Hannah West

ARC Review | Kingdom of Ash and Briars by Hannah West

Kingdom of Ash and Briars by Hannah West Published by Holiday House, Inc on September 15, 2016 Genres: Young Adult, Fantasy Source: Paperback ARC, BEA 2016 Length: 352 pgs Rating: ★★★★ GR Rating: 3.96★ Bristal, an orphaned kitchen maid, lands in a gritty fairy tale gone wrong when she discovers she is an elicromancer with a knack for shape-shifting. An ancient breed of immortal magic beings, elicromancers have been winnowed down to merely two – now three – after centuries of bloody conflict in the realm. Their gifts are fraught with responsibility, and sixteen-year-old Bristal is torn between two paths. Should she vow to seek the good of the world, to protect and serve mortals? Or should she follow the strength of her power, even if it leads to unknown terrors? She draws on her ability to disguise herself as a man to infiltrate a prince’s band of soldiers, and masquerades as a fairy godmother to shield a cursed princess, but time is running out. As an army of dark creatures grows closer, Bristal faces a supernatural war. To save the kingdoms, Bristal must find the courage to show her true form. Building on homages to Cinderella, Sleeping Beauty, Jane Austen’s Emma and the Chinese legend of Hua Mulan, […]