First Line Friday #8

Still on a roll with participating in this post! Today has been kinda rough, for various reasons, but it was bearable, and posting has honestly made me feel a little better. On with the post!

First Line Fridays is a weekly feature for book lovers (formerly) hosted by Wandering Words, but I saw it over at One Book More.

What if instead of judging a book by the cover, author or most everything else, we judged it by its content? Its first lines?

If you want to join in, all you gotta do is:

📚 Take a book off your shelf (it could be your current read or on your TBR) and open it to the first page
📝 Copy the first few lines, but don’t give anything else about the book away just yet – you need to hook the reader first
📙 Finally… reveal the book!

Here are the first lines:

The island of Gont, A single mountain that lifts its peak a mile above the storm-racked Northeast Sea, is a land famous for wizards.

Any guesses? Here’s some books to admire while you consider…

Annnd the book is 🥁🥁… A Wizard of Earthsea by Ursula K. Le Guin!

(Did you guess it??)

A Wizard of Earthsea by Ursula K. Le Guin

A Wizard of Earthsea by Ursula K. Le Guin

Series: The Earthsea Cycle (Book #1)

Length: 264 pages

Genres: Fantasy, YA, Fiction

Publisher: Clarion Books; Reissue edition

Release Date: 11 September 2012

BOOK DESCRIPTION:

Ged was the greatest sorcerer in Earthsea, but in his youth he was the reckless Sparrowhawk. In his hunger for power and knowledge, he tampered with long-held secrets and loosed a terrible shadow upon the world.

This is the tumultuous tale of his testing, how he mastered the mighty words of power, tamed an ancient dragon, and crossed death’s threshold to restore the balance.

With stories as perennial and universally beloved as The Chronicles of Narnia and The Lord of The Rings—but also unlike anything but themselves—Ursula K. Le Guin’s Earthsea novels are some of the most acclaimed and awarded works in literature. They have received accolades such as the National Book Award, a Newbery Honor, the Nebula Award, and many more honors, commemorating their enduring place in the hearts and minds of readers and the literary world alike.

Thanks so much for reading, and have an awesome day/night!

See ya ~Mar

“A Court of Wings and Ruin” by Sarah J. Maas: A Book of Annoyances and Spite [Book Review]

A world divided was not a world that could thrive.

A Court of Wings and Ruin by Sarah J. Maas

Series: A Court of Thorns and Roses (Book #3)

Length: 719 pages

Genres: Fantasy, Romance, New Adult, Fiction

Publisher: Bloomsbury

Release Date: 2 May 2017

BOOK DESCRIPTION:

FEYRE WILL BRING VENGEANCE.

She has left the Night Court – and her High Lord – and is playing a deadly game of deceit. In the Spring Court, Tamlin is making deals with the invading king threatening to bring Prythian to its knees, and Feyre is determined to uncover his plans. But to do so she must weave a web of lies, and one slip may spell doom not only for Feyre, but for her world as well.

As mighty armies grapple for power, Feyre must decide who to trust amongst the dazzling and lethal High Lords – and hunt for allies in unexpected places.

BUT WHILE WAR RAGES, IT IS HER HEART THAT WILL FACE THE GREATEST BATTLE.

My review for A Court of Thorns and Roses

My review for A Court of Mist and Fury

I have such mixed feelings about A Court of Wings and Ruin. And this series in general. On one hand, it’s my favorite kind of trash (when I’m in the mood for romance and trash). On the other hand, I really hate a lot of things about this book, as well as quite a few things about this series in general.

But it’s been bothering me for years that I left the initial ACOTAR trilogy unfinished, and after getting my mom into reading as a motivation to finish it (my trash is her treasure), I’m gonna finish the other two ACOTAR books that have been released.

I Have Some Things To Say about this book, so without further hesitation I’m gonna start ranting.

The World

Once again, the most fascinating aspect of ACOTAR’s story is its setting. I really do like the world that Maas built, even if the Prythian landmass is just a fantasy UK.

I like a lot of the creatures that she created (but underutilized greatly). Also, I think the Court system itself is interesting, though Maas didn’t really take it in a direction that I liked. I thought that the High Lords themselves had a lot of potential as well, but Maas didn’t really make them interesting or unique aside from their powers. (And even that isn’t unique since Feyre has all of their powers combined.)

I also would’ve liked to know more about the other countries, but they only get name dropped and that’s it. We don’t even learn really anything about Hybern – the invading force – except that they were speciesist 500 years ago, and they’re still speciesist now. I felt like Maas could’ve done more with that.

The Characters

Oh boy, do I have Thoughts about the characters in this book. I hate most of them. Viscerally. But I will admit that I do like a few of them.

Let’s start with the ones that I like, since there are so little of them. First off, Nesta is still the best character in the series (so far), and I hated how much some of the other characters started to rag on her closer to the ending. She’s also one of the few characters in this novel with an actual, distinct personality and character. And it was very enjoyable to read her being bitchy.

The only other characters that I really liked were Amren and Lucien. Amren was fun to read about, and also unapologetically a bitch. And we stan Amren/Varian on this blog. My favorite couple in the series.

Amren and Varian didn’t even bother to join us.

No, she’d just wrapped her legs around his waist, right there in front of us, and he’d stood, lifting her in one swift movement. I wasn’t entirely sure how Varian managed to walk them out of the tent while still kissing her, Amren’s hands dragging through his hair, letting out noises that were unnervingly like purring as they vanished into the camp.

Rhys had let out a low laugh as we all gawked in their wake. “I supposed that’s how Varian decided he’d tell Amren he was feeling rather grateful she’d ordered us to go to Adriata.”

Tarquin cringed. “We’ll alternate who has to deal with them on holidays.”

Lucien was probably the most interesting male character in this book, and I hate that no one likes him (not even the author really seems to, lol). And he doesn’t really even deserve any of it. The only character that gets more hate is Tamlin, and Lucien doesn’t deserve to be that high on our group of MCs (s)hitlist.

Oh, and before I forget, I really loved the Suriel and the Bone Carver. But then SJM decided to do away with them (and the Weaver) (also SPOILERS), which really irritated me. They were the most interesting characters in the series, and definitely still had a ton of potential, but since Maas chose to get rid of them, I guess we’ll never see what could have been.

Annnd I didn’t much care for anyone else. Feyre was even more annoying than ever, and I hated reading about how spiteful and pissed off at everything. She wasn’t a character that I really enjoyed following, like, at all. And she was ridiculously overpowered and I hated it (and her) because she wasn’t even close to being a likable enough character to be fun to read being overpowered.

Also, it bugged me that she kept bragging about solving Amarantha’s riddle from the first book. 1) That was like the easiest riddle ever and 2) it took her months to figure it out.

My goal was bigger than revenge. My purpose greater than personal retribution.

Uhhhh, no it’s not Feyre… You’re lying to yourself.

Speaking of being overpowered, Rhysand also started to get super annoying here too. The author made him too secretly perfect under a veneer of bad-boyishness. And I both of those aspects about him. I also didn’t like how he was the most powerful of all the High Lords. Like, power couples can be fun, but that only works for me when both characters are very likeable, of which neither individual person in this couple is.

I also don’t like Mor anymore, as (SPOILERS) she’s apparently been stringing Azriel along for 500 years. And that’s just irredeemable to me, regardless of the reasons. Stringing someone along for 500 years is just morally reprehensible.

And Azriel and Cassian (and Mor) all just kept acting like college frat boys and a sorority girl, and it just got insufferable to me after a while. They’re all supposed to be over 500 years old and I can’t take them seriously because none of them act like it. Rhysand doesn’t either – he’s a frat boy too!

The Romance

Night Triumphant – and the Stars Eternal.

If he was the sweet, terrifying darkness, I was the glittering light that only his shadows could make clear.

The romance in A Court of Wings and Ruin was… meh. Most of it was average at best. And I hated the smut. Not because it was bad (though I’ve heard it’s not very good), but because I don’t care enough about it to make that call.

I just don’t like smut in general. I skip all the sex scenes in every book I see it in. And yes, I’m aware that the majority of A Court of Silver Flames is smut, but I’m still gonna read it so I can say I read this whole series.

The only relationship that I liked in this book was Amren and Varian, and that’s mostly because I just like Amren’s character.

The Plot

“Leave this world… a better place than how you found it.”

I didn’t much care about the plot until the last third, and even then it wasn’t that engaging, for the most part. SJM used a bunch of plot and character conveniences, which I despised, and when they’d had their use (in her eyes) she just dumped them for good. Ugh.

The plot also didn’t really start to move until close to the halfway point. Sure, a couple of things happened closer to the beginning, but not all that much occurred until about 40% of the way in. And Feyre was just so angry for the first 20% – it was just really annoying to read.

Also, Nesta’s powers. Maas built them up so freaking much and then, in the end, she hardly did anything with them. Literally all Nesta did with them was throw the King of Hybern into some trees really heard (which didn’t even kill him, let alone slow him down!), and nothing else. It’s like SJM couldn’t figure out what to do with her or something.

And before I forget, Feyre running off in the middle of battle without telling anyone was about the stupidest decision I’ve ever seen her make. And just to go find the Suriel who she didn’t even get any useful information from. Ughhhh!

Also, Lucien did a ton of stuff off screen, and it was the most interesting plot stuff in the book. I wanted to read that!

Final Thoughts

Even as an immortal, there was not enough time in life to waste it on hatred.

So yeah, I had a lot of thoughts about this book. And this series (so far) in general. I’m feeling pretty bland about the last two novels in this series, but I have to finish it now since I’m buddy reading it with my mom and she’s enjoying it a lot.

If you like the other ACOTAR books, you’ll like A Court of Wings and Ruin. Also, probably if you like fantasy with romance (and smut) too.

Thanks for reading and have a wonderful day/night!

See ya ~Mar


Shelf Control #12

It’s been, gosh, three weeks since I’ve participated in this feature. Again.

Shelf Control is a weekly celebration of the unread books languishing on our bookshelves created and hosted by Lisa @ Bookshelf Fantasies. It’s a whole lotta fun, so if you’re interested in participating yourself, click the backlink above.

This week I’m highlighting a book I’ve wanted to read for a couple of years, but have never found the right time to read it: The House in the Cerulean Sea by TJ Klune.

The House in the Cerulean Sea by TJ Klune

The House in the Cerulean Sea by TJ Klune

Length: 305 pages

Genres: Fantasy, LGBTQIA+, Fiction

Publisher: Tor Books

Release Date: 17 March 2020

BOOK DESCRIPTION:

A magical island. A dangerous task. A burning secret. Linus Baker leads a quiet, solitary life. At forty, he lives in a tiny house with a devious cat and his old records. As a Case Worker at the Department in Charge Of Magical Youth, he spends his days overseeing the well-being of children in government-sanctioned orphanages.

When Linus is unexpectedly summoned by Extremely Upper Management he’s given a curious and highly classified assignment: travel to Marsyas Island Orphanage, where six dangerous children reside: a gnome, a sprite, a wyvern, an unidentifiable green blob, a were-Pomeranian, and the Antichrist. Linus must set aside his fears and determine whether or not they’re likely to bring about the end of days.

But the children aren’t the only secret the island keeps. Their caretaker is the charming and enigmatic Arthur Parnassus, who will do anything to keep his wards safe. As Arthur and Linus grow closer, long-held secrets are exposed, and Linus must make a choice: destroy a home or watch the world burn.

An enchanting story, masterfully told, The House in the Cerulean Sea is about the profound experience of discovering an unlikely family in an unexpected place—and realizing that family is yours.

Why It Languishes on My Bookshelf

When I Got It: April 2021

Why I Wanted to Read It: Because I’d heard nothing but good things about it, particularly from one of my college friends. And the reviews were also glowing.

Why I Haven’t Read It Yet: I was busy with other stuff when I first got it, and then it just never seemed like the right time for whatever reason. Plus, as usual, I kept getting distracted by other books.

Will I Ever Read It?: I absolutely still want to read this. Perhaps if I enjoy In the Lives of Puppets, I’ll read it afterwards.

Thank you for reading and have a fantastic day/night!

See ya ~Mar

WWW Wednesday 3/22

It’s been a couple of weeks since I’ve taken part in this, but last week I just happened to be in between books and I didn’t know which one I’d read next. But this week I’m locked and loaded with a plethora of options!

WWW Wednesday is a meme that used to be hosted at A Daily Rhythm, but has been taken over by Sam @ Taking on a World of Words. Now, without further ado, let’s get into the 3 Ws!

The 3 Ws of WWW Wednesday:

What are you currently reading?

What did you recently finish reading?

What do you think you’ll read next?


The Thing I’m Reading Now

A Court of Frost and Starlight by Sarah J. Maas

A Court of Frost and Starlight by Sarah J. Maas

Current Status: 2%

Current Feels: 🤔 (unsure, but definitely willing to read and finish!)

I’m currently buddy reading this series with my mom in a bid to get her into reading (and to give me some motivation to finish the ACOTAR books). I know what shows she likes, so I knew what kinds of books she’d like. (I was right. Lol.)


The Thing I Just Finished Reading

A Court of Wings and Ruin by Sarah J. Maas

A Court of Wings and Ruin by Sarah J. Maas


The Thing(s) I Might Read Next

A Court of Silver Flames by Sarah J. Maas

A Court of Silver Flames by Sarah J. Maas

Depending on how I feel after I finish ACOFAS, I’ll either read this next and finish off the series, or take a break and read it next month. (My mom’s barely started ACOWAR, and it’ll probably take her a month to finish a big book like that, so… yeah.)

OR

Eragon by Christopher Paolini

Eragon by Christopher Paolini

This series is what I’ll read next if I choose not to go for ACOSF right away. It’s a series that I originally read over a decade ago and never finished. (Inheritance wasn’t even out yet!)

I’ve always had a desire to finish The Inheritance Cycle, though, and it has a special place in my heart. So it’s getting read no matter what – whether before or after ACOSF, not withstanding.


What books have you been reading lately? What have you thought of them? Do we have any overlap?

Thanks for reading and have a great day/night!

See ya ~Mar

Spring Reading 2023

Happy Spring everyone! 🌱🌈🌞🏵️ March 20th was the spring equinox this year, so I wanted to get this post out before the end of the day. So, Spring Reading 2023, here we come!

With this post I’m gonna start a new thing here. It’s a thing that I made up, but is inspired by this post, where I talk about the books I feel like reading depending on the season. And what better one to start with than spring, the season of new life?

So without further ado, let’s jump right in!

The Kinds of Books I Like to Read During Spring

In general, I’ll just read all kinds of different stuff throughout the year. I read different genres and stuff sometimes depending on the season, but I’m not a seasonal reader in the way that you’re probably thinking.

I’ll read fantasy books of all sorts throughout the year, regardless of the way different times of the year “feel” to me. But in spring, I start getting in the mood for some weird sci-fi, post apocalyptic, and dystopian fiction for whatever reason. Actually, no scratch that, it’s probably because of that thing that happened in March 2020. So yeah, that’s what I love reading in spring.

A Few Random Things From My TBR That I’d Like to Read This Spring (From Soonest to Not Soonest of When I’ll Read It)

A Court of Frost and Starlight by Sarah J. Maas

I’ve decided to finally finish the ACOTAR series, after starting it years ago. I got my mom into it, and we’re currently buddy reading A Court of Wings and Ruin, which I’ll most likely finish by tomorrow night.

It’s a long series full of long books though, so depending on how I feel after I finish A Court of Frost and Starlight, I might put off A Court of Silver Flames a couple of weeks and read other stuff. My mom will need time to catch up anyway. (She’s a slow reader and she spends a lot of her free time during the day doing other stuff she likes.)

Eragon by Christopher Paolini

This was a book series that I absolutely devoured about fifteen years ago. But I was young, and I lost interest in the political machinations going on, so I lost interest after Brisingr. Thus, I never read Inheritance when it came out in… 2011?

But yeah, I absolutely loved Eragon when I first read it – so much so that I read it a second time just a few months later in the same year that I first read it! I rather liked Eldest too, and I love the setting that Paolini created. (Parts of it make me feel the same way I do when I play Legend of Zelda games, and I love it.) So I’m gonna finish it this time – the whole dang series!

Gideon the Ninth by Tamsyn Muir

The Locked Tomb series is still on my TBR!! I just… keep getting distracted by other books that I want to read, unfortunately. But I’m definitely still interested in it! I already have the first two books, waiting on my shelf, ready to be read. Plus lesbian necromancers in space!! How can I not try reading that?!

Also, it’s a weird science-fantasy, possibly post apocalyptic, and definitely dystopian series of books. So yeah, absolutely gotta read it now!

In the Lives of Puppets by T.J. Klune

This is one of the books coming out this year that I’m ridiculously excited for. (Other books I’m excited for include: everything that Martha Wells is publishing this year and Murtagh by Christopher Paolini.) In the Lives of Puppets is another book that falls into that weird sci-fi category that I love. And it has found family to boot! (I love the found family trope.)

The End

So yeah, these are some of the things I’m planning on definitely reading in the immediate future. I’m looking forward to all of them. (To a degree. I’m looking at you, ACOTAR series.)

It’s not as weird science-y and post apocalyptic as you might think, but as I said: I’m not really a seasonal reader. Half of the list here is though, so I say it’s enough to be a thing.

As always, thanks so much for reading and have an amazing day/night!

See ya ~Mar

Weekly Wrap-Up: 3/13 – 3/19

Sooo, I’m super satisfied with everything that I was able to post last week. It honestly felt a little exhilarating posting five different days again. I’m so happy with myself.

But enough of me gushing about my productivity. Let’s go over last week’s posts!

Monday 3/13: Majestic Monday #11

Last Monday, I finally got around to posting another Majestic Monday. I know that I said that I’d be posting it weekly a couple weeks before, but sometimes life happens.

My Majestic Monday post from 3/13.

Tuesday 3/14: Pi Day

I didn’t actually post anything on this day. I just like Pi Day, and believe that it deserves to be acknowledged. That is all.

Wednesday 3/15: March 2023 Birthstone Book Covers

On Wednesday, I decided to throw in my lot for Leslie from Books Are the New Black’s wonderful Birthstone Book Covers. This month is March (obviously) so the birthstone was aquamarine. So the book cover color to pick was… aquamarine. (Easy month, lol.)

My Birthstone Book Covers post from last Wednesday.

Thursday 3/16: A Thousand Steps into Night Review

A Thousand Steps into Night by Traci Chee

Thursday is when I finally got around to posting my review for A Thousand Steps into Night by Traci Chee. It was a perfectly fine book. I gave it ★★✫☆☆.

My full review of A Thousand Steps into Night.

Friday 3/17: First Line Friday #7 / St. Patrick’s Day

On Friday, I did another First Line Friday. First Line Fridays are a weekly feature formerly hosted by Wandering Words, but is something that I saw over at One Book More.

And it was also St. Patrick’s Day!! ☘️🇮🇪💚🍻

My First Line Friday post from a few days ago.

Sunday 3/19: Timekeeper Review

Timekeeper by Tara Sim

Yesterday, I posted another retrospective book review. (It’s a thing where I go over a book I read before I started this blog and see if I still like it. Or hate it.) This time it was on Timekeeper by Tara Sim. I gave it ★★★★☆.

My entire Timekeeper review.

Goals for 3/20 – 3/26

Once again, I don’t really have any other goal than to post at least as much as last week. So yeah, still nothing fancy, but it’s still what I’m able to do at the moment.

Annnd that should tie everything out in a nice little bow. As always, thank you so much to everyone for reading, and have a fantastic day/night

See ya ~Mar

“Timekeeper” by Tara Sim: A World Where Clocks Control the Flow of Time [Book Review]

It’s been about a week or so, but I decided that it was time for another retrospective book review.

Retrospective Book Reviews (previously Reading Retrospectives), for those who don’t know, are basically book reviews, but they’re on books that I read before I started this blog. So, in order for them to get their day in the sun, I go back through them and see if my opinion when I originally read them holds up.

This week, I’m re-reviewing a book I read a couple of years ago. It’s Timekeeper by Tara Sim.

The Greeks love the idea of fate — in a completely morbid way, of course. Most of the stories of how people are trying to change or avoid their fate. But everything they do just brings them that much closer to it.

Timekeeper by Tara Sim

Timekeeper by Tara Sim

THEN: ★★★★★ • 5 / 5 stars

NOW: ★★★★☆ • 4 / 5 stars

Series: Timekeeper Trilogy (Book #1)

Length: 414 pages

Genres: Fantasy, LGBTQIA+, YA, Fiction

Publishing: November 8, 2016 (Sky Pony Press)

BOOK DESCRIPTION:

I was in an accident. I got out. I’m safe now.

An alternate Victorian world controlled by clock towers, where a damaged clock can fracture time—and a destroyed one can stop it completely.

A prodigy mechanic who can repair not only clockwork but time itself, determined to rescue his father from a Stopped town.

A series of mysterious bombings that could jeopardize all of England.

A boy who would give anything to relive his past, and one who would give anything to live at all.

A romance that will shake the very foundations of time.

As my first deliberate foray into reading a queer novel, this was an excellent. Even though I don’t like it as much as when I first read it, I definitely still stand by this. And there are so many wonderful things inside this book that I also loved, that I can’t wait to talk about.

There’s a lot that I want to gush about (and a few things I want to complain about), so let’s get into it.

Stuff I Liked

“You’re the mechanic. I’m just the clock.”

I absolutely and completely adored the setting and world building here. A world where clocks – actual freaking clocks! – are the only thing standing between Earth and an apocalypse where time stops moving forever, are the clock towers scattered around the world.

And it’s strange to say, but Sim’s writing is amazing in the way that she makes the people in the novel seem so naturally desensitized to this part of their existence. Because this society is so used to the world being like this at this point that this is completely normal for them. And I love it.

I also enjoyed the characters a lot. Danny was a pretty good protagonist. I liked that even though he was a clock mechanic prodigy, there were plenty of other qualities about him that balanced this out, like his insecurities and shyness.

Colton was also a very intriguing and likeable dueteragonist, though he didn’t appear until later in the book. He was the most fascinating character to me in Timekeeper, and if I ever decide to continue with this series, finding out more about him and his past would be one of the main reasons.

“Where would you most like to go?”

“I don’t know. I know nothing about the world. Enfield is my world.”

It was the saddest thing Dany had ever heard.

“How about this: when I come next time, I’ll bring the world to you.”

Though he didn’t understand, Colton looked interested. “Is that possible?”

“Anything is possible.”

Danny and Colton’s romance was also beautiful. A lot of it felt very insta-lovey (especially at first), and a lot of it seemed purely based on physical attraction (especially at first). But closer to the end they started to have more development as a couple, and I started to understand how they fit together.

The other characters were pretty good too, though I didn’t find them nearly as memorable.

Concerning other things that I enjoyed about Timekeeper, I really loved the plot. Besides the setting, this was probably my favorite thing about the book. It melded with the world building and setting extraordinarily well, and kept me reading. It was extremely engaging, especially after the first 100 or so pages.

Stuff I Didn’t Like

He was the architect of their suffering.

There honestly wasn’t that much that I didn’t actually like about this book. I actually pretty much like everything here, to some degree.

The reason why I only rated this novel four stars, was because I only liked everything to a certain degree. I just didn’t like this book nearly as much as I liked other five star books I’ve read, and it’s something that I realized about it after combing through it a second time.

Final Thoughts

Timekeeper is a fun, unique, alternate history fantasy, that I thoroughly enjoyed. Tara Sim has a wonderful and very palatable writing style. I don’t know if I’ll ever decide to continue this trilogy, but I definitely liked this one.

I definitely recommend it to people who enjoy fantasy and historical fantasy, as well as fans of LGBTQIA fiction. It has an interesting setting and world building, it had a great story and characters.

Thanks for reading, and have a wonderful day/night!

See ya ~Mar


First Line Friday #7

I’m on a roll with posting for First Line Fridays! One might even call it a (small) streak at this point. I’m not sure why I’ve been so consistent with this post, but I’m gonna keep at it nonetheless.

And, also: Happy St. Patrick’s Day!! ☘️🇮🇪💚🍻

First Line Fridays is a weekly feature for book lovers (formerly) hosted by Wandering Words, but I saw it over at One Book More.

What if instead of judging a book by the cover, author or most everything else, we judged it by its content? Its first lines?

If you want to join in, all you gotta do is:

📚 Take a book off your shelf (it could be your current read or on your TBR) and open it to the first page
📝 Copy the first few lines, but don’t give anything else about the book away just yet – you need to hook the reader first
📙 Finally… reveal the book!

Here are the first lines:

There is blood under my fingernails. I wonder how many of my people I’ve killed this

Any guesses? I’ll let you look at some books, while you think about it…

Annnd the book is 🥁🥁… A Curse So Dark and Lonely by Brigid Kemmerer!

(Didja guess it??)

A Curse So Dark and Lonely by Brigid Kemmerer

A Curse So Dark and Lonely by Brigid Kemmerer

Series: The Cursebreaker (Book #1)

Length: 496 pages

Genres: Fantasy, Romance, YA, Fiction

Publisher: Bloomsbury YA

Release Date: January 29, 2019

Book Description:

Fall in love, break the curse.

It once seemed so easy to Prince Rhen, the heir to Emberfall. Cursed by a powerful enchantress to repeat the autumn of his eighteenth year over and over, he knew he could be saved if a girl fell for him. But that was before he learned that at the end of each autumn, he would turn into a vicious beast hell-bent on destruction. That was before he destroyed his castle, his family, and every last shred of hope.

Nothing has ever been easy for Harper. With her father long gone, her mother dying, and her brother barely holding their family together while constantly underestimating her because of her cerebral palsy, she learned to be tough enough to survive. But when she tries to save someone else on the streets of Washington, DC, she’s instead somehow sucked into Rhen’s cursed world.

Break the curse, save the kingdom.

A prince? A monster? A curse? Harper doesn’t know where she is or what to believe. But as she spends time with Rhen in this enchanted land, she begins to understand what’s at stake. And as Rhen realizes Harper is not just another girl to charm, his hope comes flooding back. But powerful forces are standing against Emberfall . . . and it will take more than a broken curse to save Harper, Rhen, and his people from utter ruin.

Have you read this book? (I have. It was okay. Will probably do a review eventually.) Have you read any of the sequels? What did you think of the book(s), if you have?

Thanks so much for reading, and have an awesome day/night!

See ya ~Mar

An Average-Feeling Fantasy | “A Thousand Steps into Night” by Traci Chee [Book Review]

A Thousand Steps into Night by Traci Chee

A Thousand Steps into Night by Traci Chee

Star Rating: ★★✫☆☆ • 2.75 / 5 stars

A Japanese-influenced fantasy brimming with demons, adventure, and plans gone awry.

In the realm of Awara, where gods, monsters, and humans exist side by side, Miuko is an ordinary girl resigned to a safe, if uneventful, existence as an innkeeper’s daughter.

But when Miuko is cursed and begins to transform into a demon with a deadly touch, she embarks on a quest to reverse the curse and return to her normal life. Aided by a thieving magpie spirit and continuously thwarted by a demon prince, Miuko must outfox tricksters, escape demon hunters, and negotiate with feral gods if she wants to make it home again.

With her transformation comes power and freedom she never even dreamed of, and she’ll have to decide if saving her soul is worth trying to cram herself back into an ordinary life that no longer fits her… and perhaps never did.

This book was so… meh. To me at least! Don’t get me wrong – I think that it was written well enough, it simply wasn’t for me. But it wasn’t a bad book, so I didn’t rank it too low.

A Thousand Steps into Night is a Japanese-inspired fantasy novel written by Traci Chee, and published by Clarion Books on March 1, 2022. It features genres such as: fantasy, romance, and YA.

The author had a very digestible writing style, and there are definitely a few things that I liked about the novel, but it still felt really meh to me for whatever reason. But before I get into that stuff, let’s talk about the stuff that didn’t make me feel meh.

Stuff I Liked

The characters were all either somewhat entertaining or generally inoffensive. But the best of those characters was definitely Geiki. He was the highlight of the book for me, and I dearly wish he’d had more presence in the plot than just being main-character-Miuko’s tagalong buddy. Their relationship was cute and fun though.

Speaking of Miuko, our MC, she was… alright, I guess. She wasn’t the worst female protagonist I’ve ever read – not even close! – but she honestly felt a little cliche and middle of the road for an MC.

I also thought that a few of the other characters were interesting, but most of those didn’t show up until quite a ways into the book, and none of them ever stayed long. But that’s kind of all I can think of for things I really liked about this book.

Stuff I Didn’t Like

I didn’t like the plot. Let me be clear, it wasn’t necessarily a bad plot or anything – it was just probably not for me.

There also weren’t enough romantically coded moments between our two lovebirds in A Thousand Steps into Night. And I still felt like the end of the book really left their status as a couple ambiguous. (I could be wrong there though.)

And I can’t think of anything else in the book that stood out to me – stuff I didn’t like or otherwise, which is kind of telling of how meh this novel is. I also didn’t have any quotes that really stood out to me, or that I really liked, which is why there aren’t any in this review. Also, the footnotes thing got really annoying after a a while.

Final Thoughts

A Thousand Steps into Night by Traci Chee wasn’t a good book, in my opinion. But it isn’t even close to being a bad book, and it’s all definitely influenced by the fact that this book just wasn’t for me.

I do recommend those who are interested, to give it a shot. Maybe it’ll be for you.

See ya ~Mar


Birthstone Book Covers: March 2023

Yay! It’s March, which means that spring is right around the corner. Green Month is officially here! (Or Aquamarine Month, if you prefer, considering this post. Lol.)

Leslie @ Books Are the New Black created a fun monthly post called Birthstone Book Covers. Each month, she features book covers that are either the same color of that month’s birthstone or include the color in the title.

March has one birthstone – Aquamarine.

Rules:
📚 Mention the creator (Leslie @ Books Are The New Black) and link back to her so she can check out your post.
📚 Pick 5+ book covers that match the current month’s Birthstone.
📚 HAVE FUN!
📚 Nominate people if you want!