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Friday, July 17, 2015

Six of Crows (ARC) Review

this week i read an ARC called "Six of Crows" and oh, sweet baby Jesus, it was glorious!

let’s all just start worshiping Leigh Bardugo because my, oh my, has she written something so wonderful, so amazing, that she must be a book god.

seriously, guys, she has outdone herself. (how??! i loved her Grisha Trilogy so much already!) she blew me away. how do I even begin to share my love of this book with you guys? i had so so much fun while reading this book. i laughed, i cried, i got anxious, i panicked, i swooooned!

first, lets get some background! if you didn't know about, or you haven't read (how could you?!), the Grisha Trilogy, i will recommend you do. (it is so incredibly awesome!) the Grisha Trilogy takes place in Ravka and "Six of Crows" takes place in another country called Kerch but in order to grasp some of the characters (Nina!) i think you should read the Grisha Trilogy first. ofc you don't need to but hey, you could be missing out. 

also, just a fyi for those who have read it, no we don't get to see our beloved characters but i didn't mind at all because we got SIX NEW AND INSANELY GOOD ONES!

so let's talk characters!

the convict! oh, Kaz Brekker. guys, you're gonna be head over heals for this little demjin! he is just the perfect batch of everything. the good, the bad, the sexy, the raspy voice, the sexy leather gloves, the cleverness! 

"The boy they called Dirtyhands didn't need a reason any more than he needed permission—to break a leg, sever an alliance, or change a man's fortunes with the turn of a card."

Kaz is the leader of the Dregs, a gang in Ketterdam. he answers to his boss, Per Haskell, but basically, since the age of twelve, Kaz has been building himself a reputation as the most badass, scariest shit ever. He comes off with a very familiar vibe as another Bardugo character we love. . . but wait, i may love Kaz more! SAY WUT? yeah, i know. he also reminds me of Sherlock Holmes. he's clever and blunt and very careless towards other people's feelings. he's very much the anti-hero.

"A liar, a thief, and utterly without conscience."

then we have Jesper, the sharpshooter! oh, what a charmer! he was witty and a total stud. besides being very, very good with guns, Jesper is also a gambler. and he has his own problems, poor baby, but he sure does look at everything half full! basically he's another badass. then there's Wylan! aw! i adore Wylan so much. he was a bit nerdy and a total fish out of water. he comes from a wealthy family and trying to fit in with the Dregs is a bit hard for him! it was also hilarious for us! 

"Why did you move out of your father's house?" Jesper asked.
"It was time," Wylan said tightly.
"Idealist? Romantic? Revolutionary?
"Idiot?" suggested Nina. "No one chooses to live in the Barrel if he has another option."

which leads me to Nina! ahhhh, my wonderful Nina! i love her so much. she's a Grisha, a Heartrender <3 her backstory is my favorite (right next to Kaz's) and what she's been through, i think, will have everyone falling in love with her. Nina is sexy, beautiful, and loves to eat and is a serious sweetheart! she was a part of the Second Army, um hello! can we say badass! she's fierce and loyal and so strong! basically, everything a great female character should be. 

"Nina loved her country and loved her people. She still believed in the future of Ravka and in the Second Army."

and Bardugo does give us our fair share of strong female characters. Inej is just as magnificent as Nina <3 Inej is the spy of the group. deadly and beautiful. the Wraith, they call her. she is the retriever of secrets. and she's such a well-formed character (and i can't say more because the way Bardugo slowly lets the story unfold is an experience itself) but Inej is battling many demons on her own, past and present ones! i also love that she has a strong sense of faith! even though life has not been generous with her, Inej has a strong hold of her beliefs<3

"Tonight her Saints were kind—two men were firing on the docks with their backs to her. She dispatched them with two quick thrusts of her blades. Six bodies, six lives taken. She was going to have to do a lot of penance, but she'd helped even the odds a bit in the Dregs' favor."

AHH! bless Bardugo for female empowerment! and lastly, my sweet baby: Matthias! and i can't really say much because his entire reveal was SUCH a shocker. i just want to say he is the most purest, saddest, complex, sweetest character Bardugo has created. my poor, poor baby! every chapter of his was like a needle to the heart! small, excruciating, pins stabbing you. he went through such a inner fight from the moment we meet him! i love him so much!

"In the good dreams, he slammed her to the ground and throttled her, watching the life drain from her eyes, heart full of vengeancefinally, finally. In the bad dreams, he kissed her."

*starts sobbing* so there you have our six wonderfully diverse outcast! now onto the story!

in the very first chapter, we meet a Corporalnik, a Healer. she is forced to heal a little boy after his arm was intentionally cut. she heals him and everything is okay, but then she is forced to take a drug called jurda parem. and the little boy is cut again and this time she heals him faster than before—thanks to the drug. except that the drug also does something more than just amplify her powers! she gets new ones and then things go bat-shit crazy!

Kaz is then contracted by the Kerch Council (rich merchants and stuff) to infiltrate the Fjerdan's Ice Court! but ha! Kaz is all like, "i dont think so!" because the Ice Court has never ever been breached before and to try to break into it would be a suicide mission because the Fjerdan's are some scary ass people and all around seem freaking intimidating! 

but the Kerch Council make an impossible to pass in the form of 20 million kruge, which is a ton of money! so Kaz, being the greedy bastard he is, accepts. 

"He'd need a very specialized team, a desperate team that wouldn't balk at the real possibility that they'd never come back from this job."

so boom! the heist is set! things go the way they're planned, things don't go the way they're planned. there is a BUNCH of surprises and twist! oh so many clever, clever twist. 

and there's romance! oh! the romance, the ships! i loved them allllllll! everything fell perfectly together. and every ship was beautifully developed, i think that may have been my favorite part. 

the world building was marvelous. i feel like i can walk the streets of Ketterdam and tell you all about the coffeehouses, the taverns, the gangs, the Barrel! i was mesmerized by Fjerdan and their culture and their rituals. the druskelle were crazy but i liked learning about them very much.

i kept having dreams that i was in this world and it's because Bardugo's writing is impeccable. it all felt like a film playing inside my head. there is so much beauty in this book!

so, there you have it! if you haven't pre-ordered it already, what are you waiting for? i swear you're going to enjoy this baby.

you can read the first two chapters here!

thank you to Fierce Reads, Molly Brouillette, and Henry Holt and Company for the advance copy!<3

Monday, March 2, 2015

vicious review

this week i read a really hyped book called "vicious" and let me tell you: i want to give this book to everyone i meet. 

*sees mailman*
"hi, have you read vicious?"

*tells 6 yo sister*
"hey, read vicious by v.e. shwab?" 

*calls grandmother*
"hello! wanna read vicious?"

*sees my cat*
"khaleesi! you need to read vicious!"

she totally read it, and she loves it!!

"He's not a bad man," she said. 
"There are no good men in this game," said Mitch.

see, when i started reading vicious, i just knew this book was going to be good. the story is told through a series of flashbacks, ten years ago and the present, making the story enticing. but i think the true captivation of this book is in its protagonist: victor and eli. 

my god. those two are certainly something. they are by far the most fucked up characters i have ever read about. and i say that in a completely positive manner. they are something else, and i loved them.

we start off with victor having recently escaped prison. [how did he get there, you ask? well i won't tell you the specifics because i don't want to spoil you. but his jail-time has to do with a eo thesis eli was working on.] and he is out for revenge! all he wants is his revenge on eli. 

oh, eli, eli, eli. *sighs sadly* he was victor's best friend in college. they were roommates and really hit it off. in the common way most bffs do you know like finding something similar of them in the other. except for these two it was a lack of morality.

"It had taken nearly two years of friendship to crack through the charming, candy shell and find the thing Victor had always known lurked within."

there's something messed up with him, just as there's something messed up with victor. and he's right, because they are both sociopaths! they're intelligent, sharp, ambitious, and cunning. oh so cunning. victor likes eli. to the point where he is infatuated with how well eli can hide the sociopath side of himself. it doesn't help that since they are both so smart, they are constantly competing but not competing. not really. they aren't enemies. [not yet] i think that eli was that one person who victor wanted to be. he was better at hiding what was wrong with him. he was a better charmer and popular. and sadly, he had the girl that victor liked.  

“All Eli had to do was smile. All Victor had to do was lie. Both proved frighteningly effective.” 

so we have sociopaths, ambitious ones. they, of course, have the brilliant bravery of trying out eli's thesis about eos [ExtraOrdinary people] which includes dying but coming back to life. er, what? yes. they decide that they are going to commit suicide in order to test the theory out and not just resurrect [oh no!] they want to return with superpowers! that's bat-shit crazy. but these two actually succeed! except that as victor resurrected, he messed up horribly and went to jail. eli was free. victor was not. to make matters worst, eli helped put victor in jail.

"And now, just as then, when he closed his eyes and searched for a silence, a word rose up to meet him, a reminder of why he couldn't afford to break, a challenge, a name. Eli."

ten years later, victor breaks out. he's set on killing his former friend. eli has also been struggling with the consequences of that awful night ten years ago. he goes about his new gift in a different way. the thing that victor always believed to live inside him has obviously come out. eli is on a quest to do good.

“If Eli really was a hero, and Victor meant to stop him, did that make him a villain?
He took a long sip of his drink, tipped his head back against the couch, and decided he could live with that.” 

but just know: there are no good guys! none! no one in this book was a good person. everyone was fucked up. the main protagonist, the sidekicks! [my god, those sidekicks? one was obviously worst than the other but seriously? she was a total psychopath!] we may think victor had his reasons . . . and he did. but so did eli! were they good? not to most people but you can see where he was coming from. it made sense. but they all killed. so they were bad? i guess. the fact is that once you read this book, you'll realize that the line between good and evil is blurred. hell i think it's missing!

read this book if you haven't! you wont regret it! 

disclaimer: my cat can't really read. she's not that talented :( but she can fetch! she totally can! 

Monday, February 23, 2015

under different stars review

this week i read a really pretty book called "under different stars" and let me tell you: that cover was not the only thing that was out of this world!

i ordered this book when i saw it on amazon and recognized the author, amy a. bartol. i read a book in her other series years ago and i remember enjoying it a lot, so i thought i'd give this one a try. and i am so happy i did!

i did not expect this book to be sooooo great! 

it starts off a bit confusingly, but is that not the case with most new books that heavy on the fantasy/sci-fi? but by the end of chapter one, i was obsessed and needed to constantly have this book in my hands. this book was addicting!

kricket hollowel, i thought her name would bother me but it didn't (and when we found out the meaning behind her name, oh gosh<3), has been on the run from social workers. she has no parents and had been in the foster care system until she ran away. when we meet her, she's a few months shy from her eighteenth birthday which means she a few months shy from f r e e d o m ! ! 

but on a train ride home, kricket is confronted by three mysterious guys (the leader of which is trey *wink wink*). he tells her that he has come to take her home where she must pay for her "crimes"! 

"You cannot thrive under the wrong stars, Kricket . . . the stars here are in opposition to you."

of course kricket is all "oh hell no!" and douches them with pepper spray like a strong, independent main character! (seriously, this scene though? soo funny!!) she is fiesty, daring and hilarious! i laughed at her comebacks and sarcastic replies.

kricket is seriously bad ass. she stone. she cannot be broken even though earth has tried to. but she is eventually kidnapped and taken to her "home" which happens to be in another freaking universe! becuase she is in fact not even human! she's from a planet called ethar! and that is her home. and even though a home is what she wants most, she isn't going to go easy. she was kidnapped after all! 

"It's done. I'm theirs. I just have to figure out how to navigate this world and you can't help me with that."

see, kricket may be in a completely new planet, alone and helpless, but she isn't going to stay that way for long. she wants her freedom. and she is willing to do it alone except that she isn't so alone anymore. not when she traveled from one planet to another with trey allairis. but wait! don't go lumping uds with many of the other ya books that have insta-love because this doesn't happen. kricket has trust issues and believes the only person she can trust is herself. (awww!) but trey, oh, trey. he knows she's special and strong and a fighter (like he) and so he ends up falling for her.

"She's in your head, Trey."
"My head, my heart, my blood," Trey responds immediately. 

sigh. i really enjoyed this book because of their slow romance. oh! and there isn't really a love triangle, even though the official summary makes it seem so. kricket likes trey. trey likes kricket. kyon is just a crazy psycho trying to marry her. ha! but i will admit that he is pretty captivating. i'm interested in seeing where his character goes in the next book!

the world of ethar is really amazing too! and there is a lot of building of it and we learn things about them. it can get a bit overwhelming, like i said, but it does make it better and realistic. i also adored jax and wayra who were secondary characters but no less charming than trey. i enjoyed every scene with them! i want more of them!

i just want more of this book, tbh. read it. i hope that you'll come love it just as much as i did!

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Snow Like Ashes Review

this past january i read a book called "snow like ashes" and let me tell you: i want to marry this book. 

published in october 2014, snow like ashes is a new ya fantasy novel by sara raasch. i can say with so much conviction that you need to read this book because it is everything you want. yes, you heard me right. i absolutely adored this book. it was a refreshing new story and it included a great new female heroine. 

oh that heroine! she is an exceptional protagonist. after having read so many book of the ya fantasy genre, a lot of the female protagonist come to have the same characteristics. i found that meira [pronounced as may-ruh?] wasn't like that from the start. she wasn't annoying or overbearing. i found myself connecting with her easily and feeling the strength she had echoing within me. meira is possessed by a strong need to prove herself. she wants to show that she is a worthy winterian fighter and capable of being a good soldier.

“But no matter how often I prove myself, I can never push beyond his restrictions—though that won’t stop me from trying. That’s what all of us do: keep trying to live, to survive, to get our kingdom back no matter what.” 

she was raised by sir, a general of the winter kingdom which has been conquered by the spring kingdom.  so she's been living in barren lands since she was a baby, along with other survivors from their fallen kingdom [there's only like 8 of them including king mather of winter with whom our heroine is totally in love with]. those who didn't manage to escape were enslaved by the king of spring. so on the run in a vacant land, meira is trying to learn to fight and to take a stand for her king *swoon* and for her kingdom that was stolen. 

“Even the strongest blizzards start with a single snowflake.

and boy, does the blizzard get going! so many things happen! so. many. in order for meira and king mather to win winter back they have to find the locket- which is a conduit and can help harness magical powers. when their group finds the location of winter's locket, meira is determined to get it.

one of my favorite things about this book is the world. <3 my goodness, i love it. basically there are 8 kingdoms within the land of primoria. 

four kingdoms of eternal season: Summer, Autumn, Winter, and Spring.

since meira is a winterian, we learned a lot from that world and not so much about the others. [but that's okay because i'm sure we'll see them in future books!] winterians, like meira and mather, have pale skin, with white hair and ice blue eyes.  they have super crazy traditions like:

“All Winterians are cradled in bowls of snow on the fifth day after their birth.” 

“Winterian weddings are held during thirst morning snow. The bride and groom drink from a cup of water, and the water that remains is frozen in a perfect circle to represent unity. The circle is buried underneath the ceremony site.” 

isn't that just so adorable! these little traditions help make winter believable. i want to be a winterian! 

then there’s the other four kingdoms that cycle through the seasons: cordell,paisly, ventralli, and yakim. we only get to explore one of these kingdoms [i won't say much on it because i want you to go in blind!] but think of them like regular kingdoms we typically see in movies or other stories. 

i don't know what else i can say to convince you to read this book. if you own it, read it! put it on top of that tbr pile. if you don't own it, why? look at that cover! don't you want it on your bookshelf? you know you do. 

Monday, February 16, 2015


hello everyone! (or no one ha ha) 

i've decided to start a blog. this will be most likely be about thing(s) i love: books and every now and then other bookish things. 

i've never had a blog. i've had a tumblr account for several years and maybe that sort of counts? i do read several blogs on a wide variety of things but i am excited to be able to join this world.

i hope i am able to bring something new and refreshing along!

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