Wednesday, 29 April 2015

WoW #48: Mirrored by Alex Flinn

Waiting On Wednesday is a weekly event, hosted by Breaking the Spine, that spotlights upcoming releases that we're eagerly anticipating.

This week, I'm waiting on...


by Alex Flinn

  book cover

Expected publication: September 15th 2015

Genres: Young Adult; Fairy-tale Retellings

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Mirror, mirror in my hand…

Beauty is the key to everything. At least, that’s how it seems to Violet—ugly, bullied, and lonely. To be beautiful, in her eyes, is to have power and love. And when Kendra, the witch, teaches Violet how to use magic, she may finally get what she wants.

For Celine, beautiful since birth, her looks have been a hindrance. She discovers that beauty is also a threat—especially to her stepmother, Violet, who doesn’t want anyone sharing the attention she worked so hard to get and who will do anything to be the fairest of them all.

But beauty isn’t only skin deep and love isn’t based on looks alone. And though Violet and Celine may seem to be completely opposite, their lives are almost…MIRRORED.

-- Synopsis as seen on Alex Flinn’s website.

You know how I love retellings, so naturally this has become one of my need-to-reads this year. I love the cover, too! When I came across Mirrored, I didn’t realised Alex Flinn had written a few other retellings as well… (Yep, it seems like I’ve been under a retelling rock!) I’m dying to know, has anyone read any of her other books?? Which one should I start with? There’s lots of time between now and September, so I’d like to try one before then. I can never have too many retellings on my TBR list, so adding a few more won’t hurt!

What do you think? And what are you waiting on this week?

Monday, 27 April 2015

Mary Hades Novella Reviews: My Daylight Monsters and Sister by Sarah Dalton

My Daylight Monsters

My Daylight Monsters by Sarah Dalton book cover

Title: My Daylight Monsters
Author: Sarah Dalton
Series: Mary Hades, #0.5
Format: Kindle
My rating: 4 / 5

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I always thought my demons came out in the day, rather than at night. I’ve never been scared of the dark. I’ve only ever been scared of real things: getting ill, having injections, physical pain… death. Those are my monsters, not ghosts or vampires or whatever else can hide under your bed at night.

I was wrong.

The dark makes everything worse.

When Mary’s psychiatrist advises a short stay at a psychiatric unit, her worst nightmares are confirmed. How can she get better in a place that fills her with dread? When she meets the other patients, she begins to gather some hope, until she realises that the death toll in the hospital is rising without explanation. Something sinister stalks the corridors and maybe she is the only one who can stop it…

Mary has to confront the Things that she sees if they are to stand a chance. But will she survive a confrontation with death itself?

-- As seen on Goodreads

My Thoughts

I read Mary Hades before I read My Daylight Monsters, and I really wish I had known to read this novella first. It provided so much background for both Mary and the other characters, and I feel it’s essential to start the series here.

“That’s the thing about hospitals, what I’ve always hated. We give up control of our life and hand it over to someone else. Most of the time it’s a good thing. We need these people and their expertise. But what if they don’t want to make us better? What then?”

-- My Daylight Monsters by Sarah Dalton

The book begins with our main character, Mary, being admitted for a week-long stay in the psychiatric ward of the local hospital. Things slowly take on a more sinister turn when the death toll takes an unexpected hike. Books set in psychiatric hospitals usually give me the creeps, and when you add in a palliative care unit across the hall… I’m doubly on edge! It definitely didn’t disappoint! I liked the creepy atmosphere that was created, and I’m really glad this wasn’t overlooked considering it’s a novella.

All the characters in the series are really entertaining and they have distinct personalities. I really like Mary as the main character, and I really like that we get to see the beginnings of Mary’s visions in My Daylight Monsters. We get to see her figure out and come to terms with the fact that she can see ghosts. Usually that whole battle has already been conquered before the books begin, so it’s awesome to see the struggles she had to go through. I really like the friendship between Lacey and Mary! Since I read Mary Hades first, I knew what the outcome would be in the novella, but I really liked seeing all the little things that made them become friends.

Overall, I really enjoyed My Daylight Monsters, and I can’t wait to continue on with the other books in the series!


Sister by Sarah Dalton book cover

Title: Sister
Author: Sarah Dalton
Series: Mary Hades, #1.5
Format: eBook, kindly provided by
the author (Thanks so much Sarah!)
My rating: 3.5 / 5

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In 1997 Isabel Quirke sits down to write a letter to her sister. A letter she never intends to send. Within the pages of that letter she describes the frightening events that lead up to the disintegration of their relationship.

Susan Quirke, before she became Susan Hades--mother of Mary--goes through a transformation so extreme it changes her forever. Her younger sister Isabel can only watch.

This short story can be read as a companion to the Mary Hades series.

-- As seen on Goodreads

My Thoughts

Sister is a short, companion novella in the Mary Hades series. It’s in the format of a letter written by Mary’s aunt, Isabel, to Mary’s mother, Susan. Isabel doesn’t intend for Susan to ever read the letter, but she feels she has to get a certain set of events that happened in their childhood down on paper.

The letter gives so much insight into Mary’s mother, who always seemed to be very straight-laced and a little detached. It’s interesting to see that this wasn’t always the case, and to find out what ultimately changed her personality so drastically. I thought Sister set up the next book in the series really well, and it raises so many questions about what will happen in Possess. I really hope they’re all answered, and we find out more about Lila… :D

*I received a copy of this book from the author in exchange for an honest review. This didn't influence my opinion in any way.*

Saturday, 25 April 2015

May 2015 New Book Releases

May 2015 New Book Releases Journey Through Fiction

I NEED these May 2015 new releases ASAP!

I feel like I’ve been anticipating the arrival of May 2015 for so long… and it’s ALMOST here! Oh gosh, there are so many HUGE books set to be released this month. I’ve had my eye on most of these books for a long, long, long time, and it’s so nice to think the wait is almost over!

End of Days by Susan Ee

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The Synopsis:

End of Days is the explosive conclusion to Susan Ee’s bestselling Penryn & the End of Days trilogy.

After a daring escape from the angels, Penryn and Raffe are on the run. They’re both desperate to find a doctor who can reverse the twisted changes inflicted by the angels on Raffe and Penryn’s sister. As they set off in search of answers, a startling revelation about Raffe’s past unleashes dark forces that threaten them all.

When the angels release an apocalyptic nightmare onto humans, both sides are set on a path toward war. As unlikely alliances form and strategies shift, who will emerge victorious? Forced to pick sides in the fight for control of the earthly realm, Raffe and Penryn must choose: Their own kind, or each other?

-- As seen on Goodreads

Crimson Bound by Rosamund Hodge

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The Synopsis:

When Rachelle was fifteen she was good—apprenticed to her aunt and in training to protect her village from dark magic. But she was also reckless— straying from the forest path in search of a way to free her world from the threat of eternal darkness. After an illicit meeting goes dreadfully wrong, Rachelle is forced to make a terrible choice that binds her to the very evil she had hoped to defeat.

Three years later, Rachelle has given her life to serving the realm, fighting deadly creatures in an effort to atone. When the king orders her to guard his son Armand—the man she hates most—Rachelle forces Armand to help her find the legendary sword that might save their world. As the two become unexpected allies, they uncover far-reaching conspiracies, hidden magic, and a love that may be their undoing. In a palace built on unbelievable wealth and dangerous secrets, can Rachelle discover the truth and stop the fall of endless night?

Inspired by the classic fairy tale Little Red Riding Hood, Crimson Bound is an exhilarating tale of darkness, love, and redemption.

(This is a standalone novel, not part of the Cruel Beauty Universe.)

-- As seen on Goodreads

 The Wrath and the Dawn (The Wrath and the Dawn #1) by Renee Ahdieh

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The Synopsis:

A sumptuous and epically told love story inspired by A Thousand and One Nights

Every dawn brings horror to a different family in a land ruled by a killer. Khalid, the eighteen-year-old Caliph of Khorasan, takes a new bride each night only to have her executed at sunrise. So it is a suspicious surprise when sixteen-year-old Shahrzad volunteers to marry Khalid. But she does so with a clever plan to stay alive and exact revenge on the Caliph for the murder of her best friend and countless other girls. Shazi's wit and will, indeed, get her through to the dawn that no others have seen, but with a catch . . . she’s falling in love with the very boy who killed her dearest friend.

She discovers that the murderous boy-king is not all that he seems and neither are the deaths of so many girls. Shazi is determined to uncover the reason for the murders and to break the cycle once and for all.

-- As seen on Goodreads

 Hold Me Like a Breath (Once Upon a Crime Family #1)
by Tiffany Schmidt

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The Synopsis:

Penelope Landlow has grown up with the knowledge that almost anything can be bought or sold—including body parts. She’s the daughter of one of the three crime families that control the black market for organ transplants.

Penelope’s surrounded by all the suffocating privilege and protection her family can provide, but they can't protect her from the autoimmune disorder that causes her to bruise so easily.

And in her family's line of work no one can be safe forever.

All Penelope has ever wanted is freedom and independence. But when she’s caught in the crossfire as rival families scramble for prominence, she learns that her wishes come with casualties, that betrayal hurts worse than bruises, that love is a risk worth taking . . . and maybe she’s not as fragile as everyone thinks.

-- As seen on Goodreads

 A Court of Thorns and Roses (A Court of Thorns and Roses #1)
by Sarah J. Maas

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The Synopsis:

A thrilling, seductive new series from New York Times bestselling author Sarah J. Maas, blending Beauty and the Beast with faerie lore.

When nineteen-year-old huntress Feyre kills a wolf in the woods, a beast-like creature arrives to demand retribution for it. Dragged to a treacherous magical land she only knows about from legends, Feyre discovers that her captor is not an animal, but Tamlin—one of the lethal, immortal faeries who once ruled their world.

As she dwells on his estate, her feelings for Tamlin transform from icy hostility into a fiery passion that burns through every lie and warning she's been told about the beautiful, dangerous world of the Fae. But an ancient, wicked shadow grows over the faerie lands, and Feyre must find a way to stop it . . . or doom Tamlin—and his world—forever.

Perfect for fans of Kristin Cashore and George R. R. Martin, this first book in a sexy and action-packed new series is impossible to put down!

-- As seen on Goodreads

I haven’t started it yet, but I’ve heard so many good things about The Selection series… Have you read the series? Would you recommend it?

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The Synopsis:

Twenty years ago, America Singer entered the Selection and won Prince Maxon’s heart. Now the time has come for Princess Eadlyn to hold a Selection of her own. Eadlyn doesn’t expect her Selection to be anything like her parents’ fairy-tale love story. But as the competition begins, she may discover that finding her own happily ever after isn’t as impossible as she always thought.

-- As seen on Goodreads

Thursday, 23 April 2015

Review: Dark Triumph by Robin LaFevers

Dark Triumph by Robin LaFevers book cover

Title: Dark Triumph
Author: Robin LaFevers
Series: His Fair Assassin, #2
Format: eARC, kindly provided
by publisher via Netgalley
My rating: 4.5 / 5

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When Sybella arrived at the doorstep of St Mortain half mad with grief and despair the convent were only too happy to offer her refuge - but at a price. The sisters of this convent serve Death, and with Sybella naturally skilled in both the arts of death and seduction, she could become one of their most dangerous weapons.

But her assassin's skills are little comfort when the convent returns her to the life that nearly drove her mad. Her father's rage and brutality are terrifying, and her brother's love is equally monstrous. But when Sybella discovers an unexpected ally she discovers that a daughter of Death may find something other than vengeance to live for...

-- As seen on Goodreads

My Thoughts

What a stunning sequel Dark Triumph turned out to be! I loved it! There were some seriously big boots to fill after the awesomeness that is Grave Mercy, and Dark Triumph lived up to my expectations. It did take me longer than I expected to fully click with the book, but once I did, I loved it!

The characters in the series are fabulous! It’s awesome to see how each character has their own distinct individuality and vibrancy. I have to start with two characters I despise: the Abbess, and D’Albret. Both of them are incredibly well crafted, but I absolutely hate them both! D’Albret is fabulous as a villain, and his character managed to evoke so much hatred and disgust in me, it’s incredible. And what a hateful person the Abbess turned out to be! I knew she wasn’t exactly a saint in the first book, but she really showed her true colours here.

I loved Sybella’s character, and I loved finding out more about her. I don’t remember that much about her from Grave Mercy. She seemed like an interesting character, but I didn’t put that much thought into what actually happened in her past. I LOVE that she got the chance to tell her story! On first appearance, Sybella appears to be a cold, heartless killer following duties, and I loved seeing a softer side to her personality slowly appearing throughout the book. She’s had one brutal life up to this point, and at times it’s not an easy read. Quite a few unsettling and icky subjects are addressed, though not in stark detail, but you can read between the lines and get the full gory picture. I’m delighted to see the historical rose-tinted glasses were removed, and portrayed just how disgusting some parts of history can be. Sybella’s picked herself up from so many horrible battles in her life, and I loved the inner strength she continually showed. She’s very quick witted, and can change most situations into her advantage.

My favourite part has to be the romance that blossomed between Sybella and Beast! I LOVED how their relationship slowly unfolded. They have a fabulous banter between them, and I couldn’t help but smile every time they butted heads. Their attraction to each other felt completely natural, and I loved just how well suited they are for each other. I really like that Beast is not your typical drop dead gorgeous hero. It makes things a lot more interesting and refreshing. I loved his character in Grave Mercy, and it was awesome to see him here, and to discover more about him. He has an amazing glass-half-full attitude to life, and it was the perfect contrast to Sybella’s outlook.

I really loved the writing style, too. Robin LaFevers creates incredibly captivating stories, and I love the depth of feeling and detail she manages to create with her words without becoming overly descriptive and off-putting. Everything is immaculately paced, and each sentence flows into the next effortlessly. I love it! One thing that stood out for me was how well the battle scenes were described. They were crystal clear, and it was so easy to imagine everything that was taking place. It’s always a peeve of mine when details are brushed over during a good fight scene and I LOVED seeing they were perfectly crafted here.

I felt there was less focus on the political intrigue aspect in this book. There was lots of action going on throughout, but I didn’t feel it was as deep-rooted as in Grave Mercy. Yeah, I’m splitting hairs here, but it’s these little things that make me prefer Grave Mercy over Dark Triumph. While I loved Dark Triumph, I still prefer Ismae and Duval’s story a little more. Overall, I thought Dark Triumph was a fabulous sequel to one of my favourite books, and I can’t wait to read Annith’s story!

*I received an ARC via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. This didn't influence my opinion in any way.*

Tuesday, 21 April 2015

My Top 10 All-time Favourite Authors

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme run by The Broke and the Bookish. This weeks topic is: Top Ten ALL TIME Favorite Authors!

Once I see the words “All-time favourite” I become SO PICKY! I have lots of authors I love, but would they be all-times favourites... I mean, should there requirements?! Maybe the ones I’ve read the most books from? If I’ve read lots of their books, I must class them as a favourite, right? Gahh! I’m totally over-thinking! Ok, here is my all-time favourite authors list! (And I know I’ll look back at this list and think I’ve overlooked someone incredibly obvious!)

This list is in no particular order.

Susan Ee

Susan Ee

She wrote Angelfall, and managed to relegate every other angel-themed book I’ll ever read into second place. Basically, pure awesomeness! (And Raffe! Let’s not forget Raffe…)

Sarah J. Maas

Sarah J. Maas

It’s Sarah J. Maas. She created Celaena and Fayre. Her writing style is uber-gorgeous and she creates the most intricate and detailed worlds for her characters to live in… hence, auto-added to every favourite author list I create!

A.G. Howard

A.G. Howard

I love getting wrapped up in a great story, and the version of Wonderland she created in the Splintered series is simply phenomenal. Oh! And we can’t forget a certain character she created beginning with the letter ‘M’… (You know how obsessed I am!)

C.J. Daugherty

C.J. Daugherty

I love the Night School series so much! It's rare when a building takes on a life of it's own, but Daugherty managed to create that with Cimmeria Academy. If I had to go back to school, and attend a boarding school (in a contemporary setting… erm, I think Hogwarts wins for everyone with non-contemporary!), I’d want to go to Cimmeria Academy =)

Stephenie Meyer

Stephenie Meyer

Yeah, yeah, yeah… Go ahead, criticise, and maybe roll your eyes. (I’m above it … *hair flip!*) But joking aside, I’m very thankful I read Twilight way back when, and I have Stephenie to thank for showing me I could LOVE reading, and it was something I could be truly passionate about. If that doesn’t deserve a place on my all-time favourite authors list, I don’t know what does!

Suzanne Collins

Suzanne Collins

Twilight might have got me back reading, but Suzanne Collins showed me where I could find dozens of new favourite books – the Young Adult genre! The Hunger Games made me fall in love with YA, and I doubt I would be blogging today if I hadn’t read the trilogy.

J.K. Rowling

J.K. Rowling

(For some reason, I feel like this should be followed up with a ‘duh’?!) But in seriousness, I only began reading the Harry Potter books last year, and I’ve fallen in love with her writing and story-telling already. I know the books I still have to read will be even better, and I can’t WAIT to find the time to devour them.

Veronica Rossi

Veronica Rossi

I LOVE the Under the Never Sky trilogy so much, and if she ever wanted to write a spin-off featuring Roar… I definitely wouldn’t complain!

Karina Halle

Karina Halle

She created Perry and Dex! You know how much I love those two. I haven’t kept up to date with some of her more recent releases… But, I LOVE all of her self-published books.

Kelly Creagh

Kelly Creagh

I love Creagh’s writing style so much! It’s so incredibly beautiful and lyrical, and and the atmosphere she creates in her books is amazing. I can’t wait to read Oblivion this summer - I need to know how the trilogy ends!

So, that's my list! Picking out favourites is always so hard - I end up feeling a bit guilty not including all the other authors I love! Tell us, who are your favourite authors? Do we share any favourites?

Please note: all author images are from Goodreads.

Sunday, 19 April 2015

Review: Melt by Selene Castrovilla

Melt by Selene Castrovilla book cover

Title: Melt
Author: Selene Castrovilla
Series: Rough Romance, #1
Format: eARC, provided by
publishers via Netgalley.
My rating: 4.5 / 5

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Based on true events, MELT is both a chilling tale of abuse, and a timeless romance. MELT will hit you like a punch in the face, and also seep through the cracks in your soul.

MELT is a brutal love story set against the metaphorical backdrop of The Wizard of Oz (not a retelling). When sixteen year old Dorothy moves to the small town of Highland Park, she meets, and falls for Joey – a “bad boy” who tells no one about the catastrophic domestic violence he witnesses at home. Can these two lovers survive peer pressure, Joey’s reputation, and his alcoholism?

Told in dual first person, Joey’s words are scattered on the page – reflecting his broken state. Dorothy is the voice of reason – until something so shattering happens that she, too, may lose her grip. Can their love endure, or will it melt away?

-- As seen on Goodreads

My Thoughts

Melt took me by completely by surprise! I love out of the box books like this – it becomes a reading experience rather than just a story. The first chapter throws you right into things, and really shows that it’s not going to be a light and fluffy read. Just to avoid confusion, this book is NOT a Wizard of Oz retelling. The only similarity I could see was the name of the main character (Dorothy), some quotes within the book, and a yellow brick road on the cover.

The story, and much of the plot, revolves around our two main characters, Dorothy and Joey. They meet by chance right at the beginning of the book in a diner, and personally, I don’t class this as an insta-love story. There was lots of insta-attraction (which is completely natural), but the progressing into love comes much, much later on. People are drawn to each other in real life without any apparent explanation, and I think this was captured really well here. I don’t want to say much about the story, as I think it’s best to go in without knowing a whole lot about it and just experience it first-hand.

The book is written in the first person, alternating between the main characters point-of-views. I loved the way the book was written, but in particular, I LOVED how Joey’s POV was handled. I thought it captured his fear, anxiety, intensity, worry and pain so well, and you could feel the tension radiating from the pages. I loved how so much was captured with so few words, and the verse-style formatting adds so much to the atmosphere. It did take me a couple of chapters to get used to the flow of the story, but once I did, I was completely hooked for the rest of the book.

In general, I liked all the characters, but Joey was by far my favourite. He’s had one hell of a rough life, and seeing his story unfold throughout the book was both heart-wrenching and breath-taking. I loved how his narration style added an entirely different layer to his personality. I loved being able to see his emotions shift just by watching the length of each line on the screen. I’ve never read anything like it before, and I LOVED it.

In complete contrast, I absolutely HATED Joey’s father’s guts! Oh my goodness, he is one vile person! He really is the epitome of a house devil and a street angel. While I absolutely hate his guts, he’s a very well portrayed character. He evoked so many different emotions from me, and most of them ranged from pure loathing to extreme rage.

I wasn’t expecting to become as invested with the outcome as I did. The ending was incredible, and I felt every single emotion the characters were going through. Once the book ended, I was left reeling and I still don’t know how to fully process it. I’m so glad to see that there is a sequel on the way, and I can’t wait to find out what happened after the final chapter!

*I received an eARC of this book via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. This didn't influence my opinion in any way.*

Friday, 17 April 2015

Review: The Infinite by Lori M. Lee

The Infinite by Lori M. Lee book cover

Title: The Infinite
Author: Lori M. Lee
Series: Gates of Thread and Stone, #2
Format: eARC, kindly provided by the
publishers via Netgalley (Thank you!!)
My rating: 3.5 / 5

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The walls of Ninurta keep its citizens safe.

Kai always believed the only danger to the city came from within. Now, with a rebel force threatening the fragile government, the walls have become more of a prison than ever.

To make matters worse, as Avan explores his new identity as an Infinite, Kai struggles to remind him what it means to be human. And she fears her brother, Reev, is involved with the rebels. With the two people she cares about most on opposite sides of a brewing war, Kai will do whatever it takes to bring peace. But she’s lost her power to manipulate the threads of time, and she learns that a civil war might be the beginning of something far worse that will crumble not only Ninurta’s walls but also the entire city.

In this thrilling sequel to Gates of Thread and Stone, Kai must decide how much of her humanity she’s willing to lose to protect the only family she’s ever known.

-- As seen on Goodreads

My Thoughts

I enjoyed The Infinite so much more than Gates of Thread and Stone! The world-building was more detailed this time around, and most of the characters felt more vibrant and distinct. I really wish the first book had been a bit more like this!

I have to confess, at the start of The Infinite, I was really apprehensive. Avan grated on my nerves in the first book, and I was dreading more of the same here. I just can’t like him! I’m sorry! I really tried, but it’s not happening. I disliked his attitude even more here, and I have to admit, I was glad to get a break from his character for a while in the middle chunk of the book. What was revealed during this break was how AWESOME Kai could be! When Avan is removed from the picture, she is such a fantastic character to read about. I find it incredible that her personality can change so much, so quickly, just because of one character…

It’s no secret that I love Mason. I still think he’s the most complete and well-rounded character in the series. He has a serious side to his personality that really shines through when he’s in trainer-mode or involved in a task, but I love that he has a contrast, and how kind-hearted, sweet, caring and playful he is under the surface. I LOVED the interactions between Mason and Kai! It felt so natural, and I loved the banter between them.

I have a fear, though. Do I detect a love triangle on the horizon?! I got the sense that one could develop in the first book, and it seems like that’s the angle the trilogy will continue to take. Now, obviously, Mason is my choice in this situation. He’s my favourite character in the series, but, Avan is Kai’s golden-haired boy, and she takes every opportunity to remind us of this fact, so I doubt that will change. But, it bothers me that Mason’s character has to become the ‘other’. When it’s fairly obvious what the end-game will be, why bother including a love-triangle?

I was prepared to give The Infinite all the stars possible… until the ending happened. I’d begun to really like Kai over the course of this book, but I lost pretty much all respect for her when she forgave a certain person after a betrayal. I’m being intentionally vague not to spoil things, but the entire situation didn’t sit well with me. Overall, I really liked and enjoyed The Infinite, but it sucks that the ending tainted my overall feelings about the book. I’m curious to see what direction the last book in the trilogy will take, and I really hope it turns out to be awesome!

*I received an ARC via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. This didn't influence my opinion in any way.*

Wednesday, 15 April 2015

Review: Gates of Thread and Stone by Lori M. Lee

Gates of Thread and Stone by Lori M. Lee book cover

Title: Gates of Thread and Stone
Author: Lori M. Lee
Series: Gates of Thread and Stone, #1
Format: Paperback, owned
My rating: 2 / 5

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In the Labyrinth, we had a saying: keep silent, keep still, keep safe.

In a city of walls and secrets, where only one man is supposed to possess magic, seventeen-year-old Kai struggles to keep hidden her own secret—she can manipulate the threads of time. When Kai was eight, she was found by Reev on the riverbank, and her “brother” has taken care of her ever since. Kai doesn’t know where her ability comes from—or where she came from. All that matters is that she and Reev stay together, and maybe one day move out of the freight container they call home, away from the metal walls of the Labyrinth. Kai’s only friend is Avan, the shopkeeper’s son with the scandalous reputation that both frightens and intrigues her.

Then Reev disappears. When keeping silent and safe means losing him forever, Kai vows to do whatever it takes to find him. She will leave the only home she’s ever known and risk getting caught up in a revolution centuries in the making. But to save Reev, Kai must unravel the threads of her past and face shocking truths about her brother, her friendship with Avan, and her unique power.

-- As seen on Goodreads

My Thoughts

My expectations were really high when I began reading Gates of Thread and Stone. The premise sounds so good! I loved the beginning of the book, and I thought I’d found a new favourite series, but unfortunately things began to slip a bit shortly after that and they didn’t fully recover.

Initially, I liked Kai, and I still do to a certain degree. She seemed a bit hot-headed and impulsive, but her heart was in the right place. She’s seventeen, and lives in the Labyrinth area of Ninurta: an area made entirely of freight containers that have been turned into roughly constructed housing units. I loved Kai’s determination to find Reev (her non-biological "brother") and the street-smarts she exhibited at the beginning… but I don’t feel it lasted. One minute, she’s awesome, the next she gives in to blind naivety! She became wishy-washy and aloof, and it made very little sense to me. In honest, her entire character felt a bit inconsistent as the story progressed.

And Avan. Oh, Avan… how I disliked you. He’s our love interest, and he did seem mildly interesting in the beginning, but the more I read, the more I ended up disliking him. I don’t like saying this, but to me, he’s the perfect example of a card-board cut out. His personality was pretty much non-existent, and I didn’t feel anything toward him apart from irritation. The only character I was interested in was Mason. I thought he was adorable! I really wish there was more emphasis on him in this book. I liked his personality: he’s serious when he needs to be serious, yet lightens the mood and jokes around, too. In comparison to Avan, he felt a lot more well-rounded and balanced.

I really disliked the focus that Kai puts on Avan, and I was so disappointed that most of the emphasis was on her fluttery feelings for him, and how distracted she gets whenever he’s in her proximity. The book is written in the first person, and Kai is our narrator, so EVERYTHING is seen through an Avan-filter. It detracted an awful lot from my opinion of Kai’s character overall. An example of this was when Mason brought her to see the gargoyles while they were in The Void. She had absolutely no interest in learning about them at all! Erm, well… little ol' me as the reader would have liked to find out more about the gargoyles! All she cared about was leaving to go sit in the Sun with Avan… -_-

I’m so disappointed that I didn’t love the book like I thought I would. Everything started out so well, but by the end the entire plot and world-building elements felt very disjointed and all over the place. Initially, I let things slide, thinking I’d get lots more explanations and details as the story progressed. Unfortunately, this didn’t happen. Honestly, it felt like I got lots of detail where none is needed (ie. Avan), and no details where they WERE needed (ie. everything else!). The flow of the plot didn’t feel natural at all, it felt very rigidly planned, and a bit over plotted, like X had to happen before Y, and then Z could shortly follow. By the end of the book, I ended up feeling very confused about the overall outlook for the series. While I was reading I kept getting the feeling the book was based on a mish-mash of Greek mythology, only disguised in a fantasy-like post-apocalyptic/dystopian world. When a Greek Titan showed up at one point, I had one of those weird ‘Aha, I knew it… but WHY?!’ moments. Very confusing!

I think I could have overlooked some of the issues I had if the ending had been epic. Unfortunately, the ending in general left me feeling very underwhelmed and disappointed. Personally, I didn’t like it at all, and it was too unbelievable for my tastes. Overall, Gates of Thread and Stone had bags of potential, and I’m so disappointed that I feel it didn’t live up to the awesomeness that the synopsis hinted at.

Monday, 13 April 2015

Back Soon!

I won’t be around the interwebs that much over the next couple of weeks – I’ll be away on holidays until the end of April. There might be a teeny tiny little hint to where I’m going in the graphic above…

I have some posts scheduled, so the blog won’t be a complete ghost town! I’ll be taking a break from blogging, but from looking at the hotel descriptions, I should have Wi-Fi in the hotels I’m staying in. I’m notoriously bad at checking emails while I’m not at home, so if you need me, DM on Twitter or message on Goodreads =)

Have a fab few weeks! Happy Reading, and see you when I get home!!

Saturday, 11 April 2015

Weekly Wrap-Up: April 1 - 10 2015

I’m linking up to both Stacking the Shelves and The Sunday Post memes this weekend.


Over the past couple of weeks, I’ve spent quite a bit of time getting ready for going on holidays. It’s freaking me out a little that it’s not weeks until I go anymore… it’s down to days! I’m in OK shape, but nowhere near done. Every time I travel for more than a few days I end up either forgetting something really obvious or forgetting to do something, so I’ve tried to be a little more organised this time.

One little benefit of my organisation spree was getting lots blog posts written! I went on a huge review writing binge, which was badly needed. I got eight reviews finished and scheduled, and it’s awesome to have the entire month of April taken care of! I won’t know what happened when I come home and my lovely blog-post-cushion is gone. I have no idea how this helps me with packing, though… but I went along with my mood! It’s not every day the blog-post-writing-gods are on my side.

Speaking of packing, I’m having a little dilemma. I don’t know how many (physical) books to bring with me. I’m thinking two – one for the plane, and one in my checked luggage for later. I doubt I'll get much reading time while I'm in Disney, but I don't want to run out of reading material either...

The books in the picture are the ones I’ve narrowed my choices down to. I’m trying to be strict, but I’m afraid I’ll cave in and bring them all! I’ve sort of decided on Cress already, but I have no idea which of the other three to bring… And this is where you come in! Which one should I pick?? I've heard amazing things about all three... but I'd like to know which one you think is the best!

Books I Got

For Review

From a Distant Star by Karen McQuestion

Only one book this week, and it’s a review book from Netgalley. I LOVE the cover so much, and the premise sounds really interesting. (Thanks to Skyscape/Amazon Publishing!)

What I Read Recently

Currently Reading

I’m currently reading City of Fae, and it’s so much fun! I haven’t read Urban Fantasy in quite a while, and it’s a lovely change of pace.

On the Blog this past week

Review: Say Her Name by James Dawson

Top 10 Characters I'd Like To Check In With

DNF Review: Unwritten by Chelsea M. Cameron

Life of a Blogger: Astrology

Review: The Kiss of Deception by Mary E. Pearson

What have you been up to this week? And don't forget to tell me which book you think is best out of The 5th Wave, All Our Yesterdays and The Winner's Curse! My holiday reading is depending on you! ;P

Have a fab week, and happy reading!


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