Living for the Books

Living for the Books

A book review blog dedicated to giving honest reviews on YA books.

Review
4 Stars
Lord of Shadows by Cassanra Clare
Lord of Shadows - Cassandra Clare

It honestly still surprises me how invested I can be with books. While this book wasn't the best thing I ever read, it was still so good and kept me reading even though it's incredibly long and probably doesn't need to be. These books are kind of like my guilty pleasure, but I'm actually not that guilty about enjoying these.


I have always really enjoyed Cassandra Clare's writing style. There are such vivid descriptions and her world is very imaginative with so many parts, but it works so well and doesn't feel like it's too much. I also love that the emotions the characters feel are so real and believable. It's so real that it's easy to feel the happiness and sadness the characters are feeling. 


For the most part, I absolutely adore the characters. I love how strong Emma is, but how she's also vulnerable in ways that make her human. She isn't an untouchable heroine that's hard to connect to because they might be too perfect and I really enjoy that. Julian has to be my favorite character by far though. His love for his family is so sweet and I just feel so much for him. The fact that he can be sweet, but also ruthless is what really makes me love him though.


Another thing that I really enjoyed about this book was the character development for Livvy, Ty, and Kit. In the last book I had complained that the siblings, except for Mark and Julian weren't developed enough. I'm so glad that Kit's point of view was introduced because Livvy and Ty became more central to the plot and less like background characters that were there only when it was convenient. The friendship that develops there is honestly one of my favorites and seemed to work so well.

 

I really love Julian relationship with Emma throughout this series, but I did get frustrated by them a lot for the majority of this book. Neither one will talk to the other about their feelings because they believe the other doesn't feel the same way and it's just so frustrating. I didn't understand why Emma couldn't tell Julian what she learned from Jem at the end of Lady Midnight. Why she thought that was a good idea I'll never understand.


I wish there had been more of Cristian in this book. She played a very central role for the first half of the book, but she gradually seemed to become less important as the story progressed. I was really interested in her relationship with Mark and Kieran, so I hope there's more about them in the next book. I also thought that this book was very long and probably didn't need to be as long as it is. It wasn't really slow or boring, but there were a few parts that didn't seem entirely necessary.


Overall, I really enjoyed this book and I will definitely be looking forward to the next one, but apparently that one doesn't come out until 2019. Why is it so far away? That wait is going to be like City of Heavenly Fire all over again. Of course this book had to end on a cliffhanger too.

Review
4 Stars
The Rose Society by Marie Lu
The Rose Society - Marie Lu

I knew this series would be dark based off of the first book, but wow this series went farther with that than I originally expected it to. Honestly, I'm so glad this book went there. It stands out from the numerous young adult books that feature characters with special powers.

 

The main character, Adelina, is not the typical main character you'd expect. She fully embraces darkness and feeds off of others fear. She revels in the deaths that she causes and her ambition drivers her further to being a villain. It's incredible to read about because it's such a unique story and Marie Lu artfully depicts Adeline's ambition, as well as her madness. 

 

Adelina is not the only stand out character in this book. Due to events at the end of the last book, a new set of characters becomes the main cast of the story, aside from Raffaele and Teren. Teren is very clearly crazy and dangerous and I really liked the direction his character went in. It was believable, but also chilling, especially when it's clear that his mind isn't all there. I'm honestly not sure how I feel about Raffaele though. His chapters seemed the slowest, but honestly he seems like the only one in this series with his head screwed on right.

 

The main reason that I wasn't blown away by this book was because it didn't shock or wow me in any way. I enjoyed the characters and the story, but the plot played out almost exactly as I expected it would. I was hoping that this ending would surprise me like the last one did, but I had predicted how it would end before even picking up the book.

 

The romance in the book didn't overwhelm the plot, but there is somewhat of a love triangle. There also seems to be a bit of insta love with Magiano and Adelina. Honestly, I don't know why someone full of joy would be attracted to Adelina in any way, but somehow that happened. There wasn't really a build up to the attraction and I'm kind of confused by it. I quite like Magiano, but he deserves better than Adelina, especially because she still pines for Enzo.

 

As much as I enjoy the characters and where the story has gone, I was looking for a little more from this book. The beginning was fairly slow and consisted mainly of planning and setting up for the action at the end of the book. If you can get through the slower part, then the end definitely makes up for it with plenty of action.

 

Overall, I did enjoy this book though and I will be picking up the next book. However, my need for The Midnight Star is less than the need I had to read The Rose Society. I'm not sure if it's because I feel like I know how the series will end or if it's because this book didn't end nearly as dramatically as The Young Elites.

Review
4 Stars
This Savage Song by Victoria Schwab
This Savage Song (Monsters of Verity) - Victoria Schwab

I can't believe this is my first Victoria Schwab book. I've been putting off reading her books for awhile now and I honestly don't know why. This book has such rave reviews, so I knew I had to at least give it a shot. I was really hoping that I would love it because it sounds amazing. Maybe it was my high expectations, but I'm not in love with this book as much as I wanted to be. I was expecting to be wowed, to feel things, to never want to stop reading, etc., but while this is definitely above average, it wasn't the flawless masterpiece I was expecting.

 

The book really shines with the unique world that Schwab has created. Monsters that are born from violence made by humans is so original and the idea kept me engrossed in the story. I wanted to the know the the whys of everything. Throughout the book I kept thinking "how could this possibly be resolved/fixed" and that makes me want to keep reading. I loved the little song that pops up throughout the book about the monsters, it's creative and chilling.

 

I really loved August as a main character, if not only because his character plays the violin (I have a weakness for violin playing characters, don't ask me why). I did enjoy his character for more than his music though. I really liked how he's a monster dealing with the fact that he doesn't want to be one. It's not a unique idea, but I really loved how it was executed in this story. It felt fresh and out of all the characters, I think I felt for August the most.

 

The story falls a little flat in the beginning. Kate and August are both new students, they're kind of drawn to each other/keep running into each other without meaning to, and at first they don't seem to like each other much. It's not a very original start to the story if you take out the monsters, but the story redeems itself with absolutely no romance. Honestly, I didn't see that coming. I thought for sure there might be some sort of romance, so I was pleasantly surprised that a friendship developed instead. I didn't dislike Kate, but she also wasn't my favorite, but I loved her friendship with August and how it developed.

 

The second half of the book is intense and so many things start to happen. I absolutely loved it and the ending left me kind of chilled. I really need the next book and I've heard it's even better than the first.

Review
4.5 Stars
A Court of Mist and Fury by Sarah J. Maas
A Court of Mist and Fury - Sarah J. Maas

I went into this book scared. There's so much hype around this series and Rhysand that I was actually a little afraid that I wouldn't like this book because my expectations were too high or because the story/character didn't appeal to me (wouldn't be the first time I didn't like a hyped book). I really wanted to love this series as much as the next person, and I'm so glad I ended up enjoying it. 


ACOMAF is drastically different from the first book. The characters are incredibly different from the characters they were in the first book, particularly Feyre and Tamlin, as well as Lucien. Lucien was less of an offender in this book, but only because he didn't actually do anything, compared to Tamlin actively being a possessive asshole. His character changes dramatically in this book and it's pretty clear from the beginning the reader isn't supposed to root for Feyre and Tamlin anymore. Tamlin becomes possessive and controlling, not that he wasn't possessive to begin with to a certain extent, but those characteristics are pushed to an extreme that makes me cringe. 


Thankfully, for the majority of the book, Tamlin is nowhere to be seen, at least physically. One of my issues that kept this book from being a full 5 stars, was that Feyre constantly compared Rhysand to Tamlin. It felt like overkill constantly being reminded of how horrible Tamlin became and comparing them against each other probably isn't a good thing. I'm sure Rhys didn't appreciate it because he tries so hard to be so different from Tamlin where it counts. Yes they're both possessive, but I actually didn't mind Rhysand's possessiveness nearly as much as Tamlin's. Rhysand doesn't treat Feyre like an object and that's essentially the difference there.


I could go on and on about Rhysand and I'm sure I'm not the first one that could do that or wants to do that. There's a good reason why everyone loves him as a character. I loved the layers he has and how his character develops over the course of this book. The romance is so slow burn and flirtatious and I loved it so much. The affection and attraction develops over time and seems so much more real. It's a ship I will gladly root for. 


There's a whole new cast of characters in this book and they're so much more developed than the characters at the Spring Court. Aside from Tamlin, Lucien was the only other character with a backstory and yeah it was sad, but I never really felt for him. The Night Court characters so much more developed and way more likeable. Feyre also develops so much more and grows as a person. Feyre's development is so important, especially to the romance aspects of the book. It allows the romance to not be a love triangle, but to show it more as a people change and drift apart from each other.

 

There were a few other issues I had with the book, mainly with the fact that this book was long and probably didn't need to be 600+ pages. It was completely character driven, up until the last parts of the book and while I do love the characters, I would have liked a little more plot or possibly a faster pace. The motivations for the villains of this book are a little unclear to me, or don't quite make complete sense, but I don't want to spoil so that's all I'll say about that.


The world Sarah J. Maas created is breathtaking. The descriptions are vivid and the beautiful world she created was easy to picture. I thoroughly enjoyed this book and will hopefully be getting to ACOWAR really soon.

Review
4 Stars
No Good Deed by Kara Connolly
No Good Deed - Kara Connolly

This book immediately caught my eye because there aren't that many Robin Hood retellings and I remember a couple years ago I was really interested in reading a retelling of that story and I never got around to it. I'm so glad I got the chance to read this.

 

This story different from a lot of retellings because it involves time travel, most don't have the main character aware that they're participating in the retelling of a classic story. I actually really enjoyed the awareness Ellie has about her role as Robin Hood because it provided a bit of comic relief. I definitely enjoyed Ellie as a character because even though she was in the middle ages, she didn't let her gender allow people to boss her around or tell her that she can't do something be it's not ladylike.

 

I also enjoyed the side characters, especially Will and James, even Guilbert. I thought all of them were interesting and I enjoyed that Will and Guilbert were flawed. I don't remember James having an obvious flaws and usually that bothers me because then the character is too perfect, but I still really enjoyed his character because he was just a really good guy. I'm not really familiar with the details of the Robin Hood story, but I don't remember ever hearing about a character named James. If he is a new character, then the author did a really good job of incorporating him into the story so that it seems natural for him to be there. If he's not a new character, then I should really go back and reread the story of Robin Hood.

 

I actually really enjoyed the fact that there wasn't really any romance throughout the book. There was a little bit of romantic tension during certain parts, but it definitely didn't go further than Ellie noticing that James is attractive and her occasionally thinking about that. It's probably a good thing that nothing happened there because that would probably do something bad for the future. As is, Ellie probably messes a little too much with the past

 

There were a few parts of the book that I didn't enjoy that much, one of them being the dialogue. I'm not historian, but the characters seemed to talk a lot like Ellie or at least they used very similar language, when they weren't speaking in french. It probably made it easier to understand, but at the same time it sometimes took me out of the world. I also would have liked more descriptions of the world and the characters. The story was good enough to make up for a lack of some descriptions, but I definitely wanted a more clear picture of the time period and the people that Ellie encountered.

 

The ending of the story tied everything up really well. I thought it was really sweet, but also bittersweet. It was a nice fast paced and fun read. I'll definitely be looking forward to more books from this author. 

 

*I received this book via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review

5 Year Blogoversary + Giveaway

On my main blog, I'm hosting a giveaway in honor of my 5 year blogoversary!

 

Prize:

One book worth up to $15 from Book Depository (INT)

 

If you're interested check out my main blog for rules and how you can enter. Everyone gets a free entry so don't worry about having to follow a whole other blog if you don't want to.

 

Review
2 Stars
Mister Monday by Garth Nix
Mister Monday - Garth Nix

This book is very different from what I usually read and there's kind of a backstory to why I ended up reading it. I was at the library with my boyfriend and I really wanted him to read The Raven Boys because it's my fave, so I agreed to read a book that he picked out for me. Yeah, our reading tastes are not the same. It's not that I didn't want to like this book, it just isn't for me. Even when I was younger, I probably wouldn't have picked up the book because I was even more of a cover snob and the main character was a boy (ew boys - middle school me probably).

 

Anyway, onto my actual review. This book wasn't necessarily bad, it just isn't something that I usually enjoy. While I have read some really good middle grade books, the majority of them don't appeal to me because I find it more difficult to connect to the characters. Arthur isn't an unlikable character, but I couldn't really connect to him. His sole motivation seemed to be curing people of this virus and while that's not a bad motivation there wasn't really any insight into who he was as a person, other than he's a decent human being that doesn't want people to die. 


The plot of this book was kind of confusing. I'm not really sure why the Will needed to do what it does because the real world seemed fine. The weird world that Arthur goes to doesn't seem to be in the greatest of shape, but there wasn't really anything outright wrong with it, I think. The book also kind of just throws you into the world without much help, except for the info dumping that occurs sporadically, but always during or right before it's most convenient. The rules of the world don't seem to be clear and seem to allow for pretty much anything to happen, especially if it'll move the plot along. 


The side characters all seemed to have ridiculous names that I found distracting. At one point, Arthur says that one of his siblings was named Eminor and is a musician, but he changed his name and I just found that so ridiculous. What kind of a name is that, at least go with Melody if you're trying to go with a music name. The side characters were all just kind of weird and honestly not really important for the most part, except for maybe Suzy. Suzy gets a lot more page time than most of the other characters, aside from Arthur, and she would have been a great character if her dialogue wasn't so bad. She's supposed to be from the time of the bubonic plague, but sometimes she talks like she's from the 1900s or like she's from the south. It didn't really make much sense. 


The story was definitely creative and I could see many middle grade readers really enjoying this book, but it wasn't my cup of tea. I don't really plan on continuing this series, mainly because there's seven books, unless they get a lot better.

Review
3 Stars
Voiceless by E.G. Wilson
Voiceless (Voiceless Duology) - E.G. Wilson

This book was definitely unique and I was instantly intrigued by the idea that the main character had her voice stolen. It wasn't exactly what I was expecting, but I did enjoy it and I ended up finishing it much faster than normal. 


The world that the author created was really interesting. It took me awhile to figure out that it wasn't set in a made up place, but in New Zealand. There were a lot of words that I didn't really understand and at first I thought they were made up because I know next to nothing about New Zealand. The setting definitely made the book stand out more. I also enjoyed the technology aspect of the world. I loved the idea of the virtual psychoreality simulator because it sounds so cool and something I would be interested in trying if I could. 

 

The majority of the book takes place within the virtual psychoreality simulator and while I think that whole idea was really cool, it also seemed to take up a lot more time than necessary. The beginning of Addy's journey through that virtual reality was a little bit confusing and the chapters involving the house was repetitive to the point where I wanted the book to move on, even though I was interested in the simulation.


Where the story fell flat, was with the characters and particularly with their motivations. The characters were for the most part, fairly well developed, but they were lacking a believable motivation for their actions. Yes, explanations are given, but they aren't really satisfying and it made the characters less real for me. The reason for the Vox Pox disease didn't really seem that clear to me and I was really hoping there would be something more to it, but ended up being a kind of disappointing ending to the plot. 


I'm on the fence about whether I'll continue with the next book. I really wanted to enjoy this book a lot more because the idea seemed so unique and interesting. Plus, I really liked the development that Addy goes through during the story, so if the next one sounds good I'll probably pick it up. 


*I recieved this book from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.

Review
4 Stars
The Young Elites by Marie Lu
The Young Elites - Marie Lu

I'm not really sure why I put off reading this book for so long. I loved Marie Lu's Legend series, but I never was really interested in this book. Probably because I never read a synopsis and I thought that this was about young children in high society (think The Luxe). Yeah I don't know why either.

 

I was not expecting the level of darkness that this book has. I was under the impression that this would be a lot like every other book I'd read about with main characters that have strange powers, but it was so much better. The main character, Adelina, struggles with a darkness inside her and this is very clear from the beginning of the novel. This immediately intrigued me. Usually main characters are good and don't feed upon fear. Her character felt almost like a villain, but a villain that was on the good side, if that makes sense. I also liked that even though she had imperfections, she wasn't obsessed with being beautiful or with her missing eye.

 

I really liked Enzo and Teren as side characters because you can see how their interactions with Adeline shape her. It is very clear that her actions have consequences with others and that their actions are critical in leading her down a certain path. I liked that both sides were manipulative to a certain extent, but Teren was by far the most dark and manipulative character. There was nothing really likeable about him as a character because he's so beyond saving, but I really liked him as the villain.

 

There was a tiny bit of romance between Enzo and Adelina, but it didn't overwhelm the plot. While it did affect Adeline it didn't consume her, which I definitely loved. It also felt there was a build up to it, so it didn't really feel like insta love. I actually quite liked the couple and thought there was some chemistry between them.

 

I thought that while the story itself wasn't very unique, the characters made it something different and intriguing. I also really loved the ending because it managed to surprise me, which seems to be very hard to do these days. I will definitely be looking at getting the next book as soon as I can.

Review
3 Stars
Windfall by Jennifer E. Smith
Windfall - Jennifer E. Smith

I was really hoping that this book would be my next favorite, but it ended up being kind of blah. I'll admit, I was really only interested in this book because the cover is freaking gorgeous. Those colors just spoke to me and I really hoped that the story would be as beautiful as the cover.

 

The main issue with this book is that it's predictable. Imagine the cliche story about someone winning the lottery and you have this entire book nailed. It has all the elements that someone would usually come up with from the extravagant spending of money, wanting to do something nice for the mom, a gambling father that isn't around, and one best friend in love with the other. Add in the token gay best friend, the fact that the main character is an orphan and I'm sure you could figure out the main plot, if not the entire book.

 

Unfortunately, the predictability of the story wasn't the only downfall. The main character, Alice, was very hard to connect to. She was perfect in every way imaginable, and not in the good way. She spends a lot of time volunteering at soup kitchens, teaching a child to read, and doing various other charitable things. When she is offered a portion of the winnings, without hesitating she turns it down. What kind of person turns down that kind of money, at least without thinking about it first? She then thinks that she has the right to judge how Teddy spends his money and looks down on him for not immediately donating it to charity.

 

The romance was also quite bland. You're supposed to root for Teddy and Alice, but honestly I didn't really care for either of the characters. Teddy was not the greatest friend and it was hard to see why Alice was in love with him. As I said before, Alice spends a lot of time telling Teddy what he should do with the money and it almost felt mom-like, which isn't something you want in a relationship that is potentially romantic. 

 

The redeeming qualities of the book were not many, but they were strong. Strong enough to keep me reading and make me nearly cry. Alice has been through a lot due to losing her parents. There was an underlying theme of belonging throughout the book, that really should have been the center focus. The moments between Alice and her relatives were poignant and heartfelt. Seeing Alice's character develop and accept that she no longer had her parents was something I would have liked to have more of a focus on that.

 

While this isn't my favorite book, it wasn't bad by any means. I wish that certain things, like the romance was less of a focus and there was more of an emphasis on family.

 

Review
4.5 Stars
Lady Midnight by Cassandra Clare
Lady Midnight (The Dark Artifices) - Cassandra Clare

These books make me feel old (not that I'm really that old), but I first started reading Cassandra Clare books 7 years ago. Honestly, if an author has kept me reading their books for that long there has to be something good about their books. I don't know if it's because I'm super sentimental or what, but I love these shadowhunter books.

 

This world always manages to drag me in. It's probably because it has just about all the supernatural creatures you could ever possibly imagine and want all in one and I'm a sucker for supernatural books. Especially well written supernatural books. I'm all for the author's writing, mainly because I actually laugh out loud while reading. Ok maybe it's more of a snicker, but still. I have way more emotions from this book than I've had reading many other books. 

 

 I really enjoyed the whole cast of characters, even if I would get some of them confused. It took me forever to stop getting Ty and Tavvy confused. Tavvy didn't really have any really distinguishing qualities, except for the fact that he was the youngest. Dru and Livvy also weren't that distinguishable, but I didn't really get them mixed up (probably because their names were so different). I wish that those characters were more developed throughout the story. Since they weren't developed it almost felt like there were too many characters, especially for someone that isn't familiar with the series. There were many name drops and guest appearances by characters from other series that would not make sense if the reader hadn't read any of the other books. While I did enjoy seeing some of my old favorite characters, it kind of felt unnecessary. 

 

I did really love the main cast of characters, specifically Julian, Emma, and Mark. Julian is so precious and I loved how fiercely he loves his family. Emma was badass, but also had a soft side and she felt like a real person. Especially since she was dealing with the loss of her parents, while also trying to navigate her feelings. I also really enjoyed Mark's character, but I don't really want to spoil too much, so I'll leave it at that.

 

The romance was something that I enjoyed, but was also frustrated with. As much as I love Emma and Julian, I didn't understand why they couldn't always be truthful with each other. The ending was something that didn't really make a whole lot of sense to me. I feel like they could have worked it out some how and it was unnecessarily painful. I did like the build up of their romance though. It was sweet and it didn't feel like insta love because they had been friends since they were children.  

 

I definitely enjoyed this book. I couldn't put it down most of the time and I really loved being able to return to the shadowhunter world I've loved so much. I'll definitely be going out to get the next one very soon!

 

Review
3 Stars
That Thing We Call a Heart by Sheba Karim
That Thing We Call a Heart - Sheba Karim

I was really excited about this book mainly because a lot of the books I read are really lacking in diversity. I really wanted to love this book and there were some parts that I did, but the main character kind of killed some of my enjoyment. 

 

I was not really a fan of Shabnam throughout the book, until maybe the very end, but even then I still didn't really like her as a character. She was selfish and way too obsessed with a boy that she barely knew. She falls in love with Jaime in a very short amount of time and that really put me off from the romance. She was also a terrible best friend and at least she acknowledges this to an extent. The first thing she says to Farah when they start talking again is that she's in love. Not "I'm sorry I abandoned you" or even "how are you?". I really enjoyed the fact that Farah voiced my same thoughts when they talked about their falling out.

 

Shabnam also took it upon herself to scrutinize her parents marriage/romance/sex life and I just found this weird. She had been "in love" for maybe a month so what gave her the authority to say that they weren't happy or in a loving marriage? It seems that she was comparing her relationship with Jaime to her parents', but those aren't really two comparable relationships. I didn't like her father as a character, he just didn't seem to work very well and I guess that was the point, but honestly I didn't really see the point of him behaving that way. 

 

Thankfully, Shabnam didn't ruin the book for me. I absolutely loved Farah and honestly wished that she was the main character. I thought that her self discovery and journey to figure out where she fit in as a Muslim was so much more interesting than Jaime and Shabnam's relationship. She was a badass feminist and so much of what she said was so important. 

 

I also enjoyed the incorporation of poetry throughout the book. It was interesting and unique, especially because I had never encountered that type of poetry before. I also enjoyed the difference between Shabnam and Farah's experiences as Muslims. They both have such a different relationship with their own culture and I thought that portraying that was really important, especially Farah's experience. 

 

The book showed a lot of promise, especially with the side characters. I think that it's something important for people to read, even if it might not have the best main character.  

 

*I received this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. Thank you! 

Review
4.5 Stars
Grit by Gillian French
Grit - Gillian French

It's books like these that make me wonder why I'm more likely to pick up a fantasy book over something like this. Grit really surprised me, not only with the writing, but also the entire story did. I guessed that there would be slut shaming based off the synopsis, but I didn't expect all the other components of the book. It was just refreshing to read a contemporary book that had next to no fluff and also dealt with some important issues. 

 

All the characters in this book are flawed and that's what sold me on this book first. Each character has a reason for their behavior, even if it's not a good one. It made all the characters so realistic and more likeable. I absolutely loved Darcy as a main character. She is so unapologetic about who she is, even though she's the target of slut shaming from peers her age, adults, and family. I probably couldn't count the number of books that had a main character slut shame other girls and with the amount it goes on in the real world, it's incredibly important to get the point of view of the girl that's targeted by it. 


Darcy and her family are not well off. They rake berries all summer with the migrant workers in order to earn some extra money. I thought that the tension between the locals and migrants was really interesting and something important that should have been explored a little more. I also did not really understand the point of the pageant that Darcy and her cousin, Nell, participate in. It didn't really relate to the rest of the plot and felt a little like filler, even though I enjoyed some of the scenes with them practicing and the event. 


I thought this book would be a little more about Rhiannon than it actually was. She was still a part of the story, but her importance was kind of shoved to the side for some of the book. I still really enjoyed that part of the book though, even if it wasn't always the main focus. It seems that the book really focused on Darcy's relationship with her peers.


I really enjoyed the writing and story for this book and I will definitely be on the lookout for more books by this author in the future. 


*I received this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. Thank you!

Review
3 Stars
Talon by Julie Kagawa
Talon - Julie Kagawa

I've been a long time fan of Julie Kagawa and honestly I'm pretty disappointed by this. I was expecting something amazing, especially because I loved her Blood of Eden series. If you want to see Kagawa at her finest I'd skip Talon and read The Immortal Rules


Now, this book wasn't terrible by any means. It was just so freaking predictable that the fun and intrigue was sucked out of it. If I already know how the book will end from the first couple of chapters, there's a problem. The entire story had been done many times before, even with the exact same concept of a dragon and a dragon hunter falling in love. I thought I was going to get a fresh new take on that story, but all I got was the feeling that I'd already read this before. 


I expected a lot more about dragons, considering this book is about a girl than can transform into a dragon, but the majority of the book was spent with all the dragons in human form. I found this very disappointing and if not for the occasional mention of flying and Talon, then you could probably forget that the main character was a dragon because she was hardly ever actually a dragon. A weird thing that I'm a little confused about was that Ember kept referring to the dragon part of her as her dragon and not herself. It was odd because she literally is the dragon, but she made it sound like the dragon part of her was a separate personality.


The romance was ok, if you can get past the insta love. I'm pretty sure, but not entirely positive that Garret and Ember's relationship develops over like one or two weeks, which made their whole situation a little unbelievable. I'm also not entirely sure if there's a love triangle.


Not only was Garret and Ember's relationship predictable, but also the behavior of Ember's twin, Dante, was predictable. He is literally the stereotypical perfect, rule following older sibling, while Ember is the unpredictable, rule breaking sibling. 


As you can see my main problem with this book was that everything was predictable and nothing seemed to really stand out to me. It wasn't a bad book and there were definitely some parts I enjoyed, but this definitely isn't my favorite. I may continue the series because I love the author's other books so much, but I definitely won't have high hopes, like I did for this book.

Review
5 Stars
Midnight at the Electric by Jodi Lynn Anderson
Midnight at the Electric - Jodi Lynn Anderson
It's been way too long since my last five star read. Everything I had been reading lately just lacked that extra something that makes me absolutely love the story. Midnight at the Electric exceeded my expectations and left me near tears by the end of it. I don't know why I ever expected anything less from Jodi Lynn Anderson since Tiger Lily left me feeling a similar way.

The book is entirely character driven while sometimes that can leave me a little bored, this story didn't. I was invested in all the characters by the end, even characters that I initially didn't really like. The development of all of the characters, even the side characters amazed me, especially considering three different stories are being told in less than 300 pages.

The way that the author wrote all of the experiences that the characters had from loss to romance to friendship was so well done and believable. I really liked how the romance didn't eclipse the rest of the book and that it didn't make Catherine forget other important things.

I loved the ending and will definitely be checking out other books by this author in the future. The ending was bittersweet, but it fit so well with the characters and the story line.

*I received this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. Thank you!

 

Review
3 Stars
Three Dark Crowns by Kendare Blake
Three Dark Crowns - Kendare Blake

This book was not at all what I was expecting. The summary is very misleading. It promised three queens that were all spectacularly gifted, but it didn't deliver. I felt kind of lied to.


Lately, I seem to be picking up books that are incredibly slow in the beginning and then pick up pace about halfway through the book. This one didn't seem to pick up until very close to the end. That's about the only exciting part of the book with a few chapters that were more entertaining than others. The premise of the book was enough to keep me reading. I wanted to know which queen would survive so bad.

For the most part, the characters were decent. I wasn't strongly attached to any of them, but I did enjoy Arisnoe and Katherine's chapters much more than Mirabella's. By the end of the book I hated Mirabella as a character. I completely disliked her relationship choices. It was unnecessary and honestly uncomfortable to read about, especially because the character she's involved in is someone that is very present throughout the story. I did really enjoy reading about Arisnoe and Katherine and that's probably because they struggle, unlike Mirabella. I found Mirabella annoying, even before she made poor choices. Out of the three sisters I feel like her self-pitying was the least warranted and the most annoying.

I thought the world that Kendare Blake created was quite vivid and easy to picture, as well as interesting. It kept me intrigued throughout the story and honestly I'm strongly considering picking up the second book, even though I didn't love this one. I'm hoping that it will be more exciting, especially after the ending of this one.