Category: Five stars

The Kingdom: A fantastical, dystopic, nightmare

The Kingdom: A fantastical, dystopic, nightmare

★★★★★

(5 stars)

I very rarely buy physical copies of books. New, at least- one reason for my spurges of bad YA recently has been because those are the easiest books to find thrift. Good books, especially new good books, rarely show up in charity shops. However, I went ahead and paid full price for The Kingdom without reading any reviews, and I’m glad I did.

I knew I would like this, but that doesn’t mean I wasn’t pleasantly surprised how much I did. My favorite movie is Ex Machina, and one of my favorite books is Only Ever Yours, and this book is a perfect blend of both, but also set in a theme park. And books set in theme parks are the best books.

Plainly, I would recommend this book to anyone (and already have). It’s a good length suspense about the meaning of being alive, AI, morality, and advanced technologies, and the only major downside to me was the ending, which seems to set up more for a possible sequel rather than embrace a clean, tidy ending.

Continue reading “The Kingdom: A fantastical, dystopic, nightmare”

Advertisements
There’s plenty of pluses about MINUS

There’s plenty of pluses about MINUS

★★★★★

(5 stars)

I received a free ARC for my review.

A fascinating, compelling story about family and self.

A 17 year old girl off to college is abandoned by her father at a gas station in the midst of a shooting. She’s afraid of strangers, of trusting people, of even freedom… but now she has to try and find help. And her father. And understand what is going on, and what connection she has to the violence.

This is a quick, contained read that makes you think. It’s messy and tangled at its core- there aren’t any ‘big reveals’ (the core one is hinted at early on and easy to guess), but it is still a suspenseful story seeing how these tics and secrets come into play. It ends on a clean note, but one that doesn’t betray the emotional ambiguity.

Obviously, like any good graphic novel, it also caused me to cry for the last ten pages or so. Absolutely worth a read.

You don’t gotta know Batman to love Under The Moon

You don’t gotta know Batman to love Under The Moon

★★★★★

(5 stars)

I received a free ARC for my review.

I wish this was longer and meatier, but boy, I loved it! This book has some strong triggers for abuse and animal cruelty, but handles the subject matter very well.

I always enjoy graphic novels, but this is one I found particularly compelling. I don’t know DIRT about comics, especially DC/catwoman, but this not at all a ‘superhero’ story.

Continue reading “You don’t gotta know Batman to love Under The Moon”

An Enchantment of Ravens enchanted me

An Enchantment of Ravens enchanted me

★★★★★

(5 stars)

First, collectively, we’re going to look at that cover. And sigh. It is so beautiful, and having it hardcover with gloss makes it even better. I adore illustrated book covers wholeheartedly, and this one is perfect. Gorgeous. Lovely. I want it on my wall.

Anyhow, fae are ‘in’ right now big-time, and this is a fae book. I’m becoming more sold on fae lore (playing an Eladrin in D&D is the main reason), but I still feel like a lot of YA books with fae in them really miss the mark- I’m thinking of throne of glass, a court of thorns and roses, and shadowhunters right now. Fae lore is wonderful, and most certainly they are more than pallid, too-pretty beings who wear nice clothes (and they certainly don’t have ‘mates’ and ‘mate bonds’. Sarah J. Maas, I will defeat you for writing that in two books).

This book gets it. The rituals, the rules, the bargains, trades, and oddness that fae lore deserves- with the beauty and glam. Even if a lot of that glam is just glamour (haha fairy jokes please clap). It also subverts a lot of tropes I hate in para-ro (the main girl being okay with being immortal and leaving her friends and family behind for a boy, for example). Oh, and it’s funny, and lush, and has a wonderful romance, and a tight plot too.

Continue reading “An Enchantment of Ravens enchanted me”

The Amulet of Samarkand makes me happy

The Amulet of Samarkand makes me happy

★★★★★

(5 stars)

I was trying to think of a good title for this, but I can’t. I always struggle to leave long reviews for books I actually like, so this will surely be short. I have been recommended this book for years, and I’m so pleased to have actually read it, and own the rest of the books, and be ready to read the rest of the books. I would have DEVOURED this when I was a kid, but I still tore through it now. It’s wonderfully engaging, funny, thought-through, and with top of the line world-building as well. All I need.

Magicians who get their power through enslaved demons. A modern day london with modern day tech, but a whole lot of alternative history. A world where the magical elite dominate the industries and being common is more than just a wealth gap. Also, political intrigue! Murder! Scandal! Conspiracy! Magic!

A lot to love.

This is also one of those books where you can tell everything is carefully plotted- things are introduced in book one that you know are going to build in the later books. I’ve heard this series even has ‘the perfect ending for a trilogy’, which is a big promise, but right now I full-heatedly expect it to pay off.

 

The Iron Flower is a lush fantasy with lovable characters and far fewer issues

The Iron Flower is a lush fantasy with lovable characters and far fewer issues

★★★★★

(4.5 stars)

What a turnaround!

If you tried to tell me a month ago I’d be a certified Black Witch fan, I would have been very worried for my future. Now I sit here quite excited for the next book in the series, and quite certain it’s good to have a bit of fun.

There’s still some negatives I’ll talk about, but on the whole I had a blast. The characters grew on me. I understood the large world better. The drama and storytelling was up a notch. It’s YA, but good YA.

I even drew fanart (possibly the first ever for the poor series).

black witch crew EVEN MORE.png

Continue reading “The Iron Flower is a lush fantasy with lovable characters and far fewer issues”

Embers of War is a Humanist space opera with a lot to love

Embers of War is a Humanist space opera with a lot to love

★★★★★

(4.5 stars)

 

I might be a little bias because I’ve met the author and he was super nice to me and welcoming when I awkwardly sat with his table at a convention. He bought me rose as part of getting the group drinks. He’s also superbly friendly on twitter!

Anyways, I mention the bias in that I am rare to give out 5 stars, and this is more of a 4.5- but a very positive experience and score overall. I just want to be nice.

I really did enjoy this book once I got into it. Yes, it took a solid 10% or 15%, but once the plot and character introductions were through, I fully enjoyed it, and am excited for the sequel. I was really worried I wouldn’t like it, either!

The downside of me enjoying this book so much in a genre I don’t really read is that this is a pretty short and to the point review. Sorry.

Continue reading “Embers of War is a Humanist space opera with a lot to love”