Tuesday, 24 November 2015


3 Stars/5

Thanks to Netgalley and Pan Macmillan for giving me this book to review.

Agnieszka loves her home and village, even if the corrupted woods, full of a dark power and creatures, is on its border. The villages must rely on the cold wizard Dragon to protect them and keep the woods at bay, but it comes at a terrible price, every 10 years he takes he takes a young woman to serve him in his tower, and when they come back they are changed. With the next choosing fast approaching, everyone knows that he is going to pick Kasia, Agnieszka’s best friend and total opposite, as she is graceful, beautiful and brave. However, Dragon surprises everyone by choosing Agnieszka, and she discovers things she never knew about her kingdom, Dragon and herself.

I enjoyed Uprooted as it has an interesting story concept, full of magic and has a gothic and dark beauty and the beast feel to it. The main problem that I had with this book was I had heard a lot of amazing about it and I think my expectations were way too high. It had a good world but did have a slow pace, and it was too wordy and while the romance was a slow burn it did have a Stockholm feel to it.

Agnieszka is accident prone who has a knack of getting her cloths dirty, and is tough and tenacious, but is also very realistic and a normal person. I was a bit disappointed with Dragon as he was a human not an actual dragon, but he is a perfectionist and a loner and I did not like how he treated Agnieszka. Kasia was too perfect as she was beautiful, talented and kind but she was an interested character and wouldn’t have minded some scenes from her POV.

While I was a bit let down by this book as it didn’t live up to the hype, I did enjoy it. I would recommend Uprooted to fans of Cruel Beauty by Rosamund Hodge.

Sunday, 22 November 2015

The Novice

3 Stars/5

Thanks to Netgalley and Hachette Children’s Group for giving me this book to review.

When Fletcher, a blacksmith’s apprentice, discovers that he has the ability to summon demons he has to flee from the only home he has known and travel to the Adapt Military Academy, after his demon attacks another boy. When he gets there he meets lots of new people and races. He has a gruelling training to become a battle mage and fight in the war, but he has to catch up with the children from the noble houses. As Fletcher finds himself in the middle of powerful forces with only his demon, Ignatius, that he is able to fully rely on. With the fate of an empire in his hands, Fletcher has to decide where his loyalty lies.

The Novice is an enjoyable YA or younger fantasy novel which deals with big issues such as racism and elitism. I found it was a slow read (however, this could be because I had a cold while reading it) and a bit predictable. I would have liked to have seen more of Fletcher’s training, as we did not read much about it in the book.

Fletcher is loyal, ingenious and looks out for his friends, and I am glad he was not written as though he is the chosen one and is not good at everything. Ignatius is a very sweet demon, and I felt the demons in this book reminded me of the His Dark Material’s Daemons. Two of Fletcher’s friends are Othello, who is friendly and want to change dwarf rights, and Sylva, an elf who I feel has lot more to give in the next book.

I liked this book and I look forward to reading the next book, The Inquisition. I would recommend The Novice to fans of Harry Potter and The Iron Trial. 

Wednesday, 18 November 2015

A Gift of Poison

3 Stars/5

Thanks to Xpresso Book Tours for giving me this book to review.

Briand is the orphan niece of a cruel lord, she has very few friends and everyday her life is tormented by malicious guards and servants. Just before she is sent to the wildlands, practically a death sentence, she unlocks a hidden power and becomes involved in a rebel plot and her life changes forever. She is held by a group of rebels led by the enigmatic Kael, who want her to do the impossible and call up the sleeping dragons. With the usurper prince’s Seekers searching for her, is Briand able to know who to trust?

A Gift of Poison is a likeable fantasy novel with magic, adventure and a hint of romance. However, I did not find this book as engaging as other books by Kate Avery Ellison.

Briand is someone who wants attention but goes about it totally the wrong way and while everyone says she is brave and has spirit I could not see it, but she was likeable. Kael reminded me a bit of Valek from Poison Study but not as protective and more judgemental. I did not understand why the characters treated Briand so badly, especially at the end of the book, as she had proven herself and is destined to save everyone, everyone treated her as if she was worthless.

It had a bit of a rushed ending but I would recommend A Gift of Poison to fans of Ellison’s other books. 

Sunday, 15 November 2015


5 Stars/5

Princess Winter is adored by the Lunar people for her kindness and her beauty, despite her scars, but this makes her stepmother Queen Levana hate her. Cinder, along with her allies, have “kidnapped” Emperor Kai from his wedding with Levana, so that they can slip into Luna, rescue Scarlet, gain the support of the people and overthrow Levana. However, when the group is separated, hope looks lost and it seems they will be unable to prevent Levana becoming empress and taking earth for herself. Are Cinder, Scarlet, Cress and Winter able to stop Levana and find their happily ever after?

Winter is the Brilliant fourth and final book in the Lunar Chronicles and I love this series ability of giving each book their fairytale elements and in such a unique way. It is very faced paced as I read it in just over a day and considering this book is over 800 pages long, that is good for me, and it never became dull of boring at any time in the story. Meyer is amazing at giving each character equal amount of book time and none were pushed to the side-lines. In Winter there is lots of romance, action, humour and revolution.

Cinder is just as resourceful, determined and sarcastic as she is in previous books. However, now she is on Luna the more she feels the responsibility and knows what will happen if she fails. Scarlet and Wolf have the hardest journey in this series but they have such a strong bond, and Scarlett is just as stubborn, gusty and no nonsense as she has ever been. Cress is sweet and innocent still and the character I related to the most, although I wish I had her tech skills, but I think she is braver in this book and makes sacrifices for the best of the group. I liked Winter as she is kind and selfless, but because we the readers are only just getting to know her, I found it harder to be interested in her part of the story. I love Iko, but I am a bit disappointed that she didn’t find her “prince”, even though I felt it was a bit hinted at, and I hope there will be a short story which finishes her happily ever after.

Kai impressed me in this book as he is left out of the loop for quite a bit of the story but still plays his part and never doubts Cinder, and will do anything for his country and I like that he is intelligent, capable and just a little bit awkward. I feel very sorry for Wolf in Winter and he has changed the most as a character and has had the hardest time, but you never doubt his devotion and loyalty to Scarlet. Captain Thorne has got to be one of my favourite characters with his witty banter, cockiness and charm, and I think in this book he becomes the hero Cress believes he is. I found it harder to connect to Jacin than the other men, probably for the same reason as Winter, but he is sardonic, very protective and fierce.

I felt this book had the perfect ending and I am going to really miss this series, and I am really looking forward to reading Heartless next year. I would recommend Winter and the entire Lunar Chronicles to fans of YA books, Sci-Fi novels and fairytale retellings.

Friday, 13 November 2015

The Lament of Sky

1 Star/5

Thanks to B. B. Wynter for giving me this book to review.

Lilyth is the last remnant of the Rhai-Angof, but cannot remember anything before a year ago and she has spent that year in a school. When the school and everyone inside is destroyed, Lilyth is saved by William, a man she does not know but who claims to know her really well.

I found The lament of Sky too confusing as I was lost about what was happening, especially in the first chapter. I really did not the characters, particularly William, as they were all horrible, the only exception was Lilyth but I did not care much about her. I did not enjoy this book and DNF at 21%.

Monday, 9 November 2015


3 Stars/5

15 year old Princess Alyrra has had no choices or comfort from her rank with a cruel family and the courts contempt, and now she is forced to marry a foreign prince. However, when on the journey to her new home and betrothed, she is betrayed by a magical attack and her identity is switched with another woman’s but this gives Alyrra a freedom she has never had before. Alyrra starts her new life as Thorn, a simple goose girl, however, Prince Kestrin seems to be paying her more attention than the woman he believes is his fiancĂ©. Will Alyrra choose to walk away and save her life or return to court and save Kestrin’s but at the cost of her own?

Thorn is a retelling of Goose Girl, which I am not too familiar with. It is not the fasted paced novel but enjoyable, it has romance, a bit of action and some unexpected twists. The plot and story was interesting but it is not the type of story which is memorable. This book was much darker and has more serious elements than I was expecting.

Alyrra/Thorn is a sweet, quiet girl who is honest and tried to right wrong but was strongminded and likeable. Kestrin is protective of his country, suspicious of Thorn and could not figure her out and is also brave. However I found there was more chemistry Thorn and Red Hawk the Thieflord who has a sense of justice. I also liked that the villain was relatable as I understood her motives.

I liked Thorn and would recommend it to people who enjoy reading YA fairytale retellings.

Saturday, 7 November 2015

Hat of Keepings

2 Stars/5

Thanks to D C Vincent for giving me this book to review.

Sara is a high school student and also a witch on the side, who is happily juggling her life until her best friend and her witness another witch murder, which starts a chain of events. Everyone believes that the last of the blood witches died in a war that killed a lot of witches including Sara’s mother, but Sara knows that one has survived and is among them in her circle. The only thing that can save her and her friends is to destroy an enchantment before the blood witch gets their hand on it. Is Sara able to become a fully trained witch in time?

Hat of Keepings is an ok paranormal novel with mystery and action but I found it hard to get into. It was a long read and had a slow pace but had an interesting story idea.

I found it hard to connect to the characters but found Sara thoughtful, resourceful and clever. There are a few secondary characters including Jane who is chatty, impulsive and a bit hot-headed, and Melissa who is smart, intense and can be intimidated.

I found it hard to get into this book but I would recommend it to people who like paranormal novels about witches.