Review – Daughter of Smoke and Bone

 

 

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Title: Daughter of Smoke and Bone

Author: Laini Taylor

Publisher: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers

Rating: 4/5

Links: Goodreads Amazon

 

   Daughter of Smoke and Bone was a phenomenal read. Laini Taylor created a fascinating world and heart-breaking characters. Her prose was elegant and infused with beautiful vocabulary. She developed enchanting imagery with her character descriptions and you could feel the emotionality of her characters.

 

   Karou is our main character. She is an artist who lives in the human world, but her sketches of creatures and other worldly things just might be real. Even she seems to have unique qualities like growing blue hair, she can speak several languages, and she disappears for days at a time only to turn up again beaten and bruised. Strange things start happening in her other world. There is this guy, Akiva, they seem destined to be enemies; however, there is a strong pull that neither of them can explain.

 

   We follow Karou on this journey of self discovery.  This books has major themes of discrimination, stereotyping, and prejudice; which, have led to an all encompassing war that has been ongoing for as long as anyone can remember. Karou means hope. Is there any hope for these characters locked into the societal norm or can they break the mold? I can’t wait to follow the rest of this story.

 

   “Hope can be a powerful force. Maybe there’s no actual magic in it, but when you know what you hope for most and hold it like a light within you, you can make things happen, almost like magic.”

Review – Daughter of the Pirate King

 

 

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Title: Daughter of the Pirate King

Author: Tricia Levenseller

Publisher: Feiwel and Friends

Rating: 3/5

Links: Goodreads Amazon

 

Daughter of the Pirate King by Tricia Levenseller was an enjoyable read. I was able to surmise our main character’s secret, but that did not ruin my reading experience.

 

Our main character, Alosa, is the daughter of the Pirate King. She is the only person he relies on or puts his trust in. He convinces her to have herself captured by a rival band of pirates in order to obtain the missing pieces to an elusive treasure map. She possesses many skills that make her a strong female character. She is physically strong, agile, skilled in combat, clever, self-assured and is a well-respected leader. She puts her crew before herself. With her being a female captain, she has also decided to have a crew made up of many strong, capable women.

 

The characters can be a bit frustrating with the whole will they won’t they thing, but it’s not a deal breaker. I don’t think I’ve read a book based on pirating which definitely made for a refreshing read. While she is aboard the pirate ship with her captures; she is forced to spend a great deal of time with the first-mate, Riden. This book is not subtle about the hate/love relationship that they have for each other, but I still find myself anxiously awaiting for the time that they finally confess their true feelings. I do greatly enjoy the romance portions of books and that may not be your thing.

 

This plot moves smoothly and the characters are well developed. There is a lot of girl power in this story and if you enjoy that and this genre then you will like this book.

Review: The Cruel Prince

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Title: The Cruel Prince

Author: Holly Black

Publisher: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers

Rating: 4/5

 

Holly Black’s The Cruel Prince is an absolute stand out in the Fantasy, YA genre. Jude is a human living in a world of faeries. Her parents were murdered by the faerie (also father to one of  the sisters) that takes her and her two sisters to live in the faerie realm. Black gives us a strong female lead whose sole purpose is not wrapped up in finding love. She fights for her place in this new world that has become home. The faeries all treat her as if she shouldn’t be there. That only strengthens her resolve.

The characters are great.   Black gave them incredible depth. Cruel Prince Cardan is hard not to like.  Jude finds herself crossing over into questionable morality territory and Cardan can act in ways that are not entirely heartless. It’s exquisite. Jude uses strength and cunning to do what must be done.

The faerie realm finds itself in great danger due to far-reaching political tensions.  Jude fights to save the realm and make her home safe again. The fast-paced narrative easily held my attention. It was a quick, very enjoyable read. This genre always gets me out of any reading slump. If you generally find yourself reading these types of books, I think you will particularly enjoy this one.

That ending has me waiting on the edge of my seat. I am greatly looking forward to the next installment, The Wicked King.

Have you read this one? What did you think about it?

Where the Crawdads Sing Review

 

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Book: Where the Crawdads Sing

Author: Delia Owens

Rating: 5/5

 

Delia Owens created a beautiful, breathtaking debut novel.  This is one of the most wonderfully crafted mysteries I’ve ever read. Meet Kya, also referred to as the Marsh Girl. You are brought alongside Kya as she grows from a young, timid, little girl into a woman shadowed by prejudice and hardship. This book flashes back and forth from past to present time setting. In this small North Carolina town, one of its other well known residents, Chase Andrews is found dead. Delia developed magnificent character foils. Where Kya is known for being the poor outcast; Chase is the star quarterback whose family is well off and has a prominent business within the community.

This book explores prejudice, racism, love, loss, and the human condition. Reading this story was an extremely visceral experience. I could feel the magnitude of Kya’s isolation. These characters are very well developed and the plot flows expertly.

The Invisible Library Review

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Book: The Invisible Library

Author: Genevieve Cogman

Rating: 4/5

      Genevieve Cogman’s The Invisible Library is a fun, whimsical story following a librarian on a mission to collect books from different realities. The librarian, Irene, is given her first apprentice Kai. We follow them into this other world on a quest to retrieve a specific book for the library. They have to deal with several obstacles and they end up playing detective in order to find what they are looking for. This book is fast paced and I couldn’t put it down. I haven’t read anything quite like this, so it was refreshing to read something that hasn’t been overdone. Cogman’s influences shine in this novel. Her love for books really brings the story to life. This is a great read about a character that also enjoys the reading life. It feels very meta. Cogman makes many references to beloved characters and authors, such as Sherlock Holmes. This one will make your literary heart happy.