1 & 2 stars · Dystopian · Fantasy · Young Adult

Review: Three Dark Crowns by Kendare Blake

Others have said this book really feels more like a prequel, and I have to agree. None of the plotting, killing, etc happens in this book. it’s more of an introduction to all 3 girls, and their introductions at the festival. Only at the very end did some stuff actually start to happen. It seems like all the good I expected in this book will actually happen in the next.

A brief summary from Goodreads:

Every generation on the island of Fennbirn, a set of triplets is born: three queens, all equal heirs to the crown and each possessor of a coveted magic. Mirabella is a fierce elemental, able to spark hungry flames or vicious storms at the snap of her fingers. Katharine is a poisoner, one who can ingest the deadliest poisons without so much as a stomachache. Arsinoe, a naturalist, is said to have the ability to bloom the reddest rose and control the fiercest of lions.

But becoming the Queen Crowned isn’t solely a matter of royal birth. Each sister has to fight for it. And it’s not just a game of win or lose … it’s life or death. The night the sisters turn sixteen, the battle begins. The last queen standing gets the crown.”

The characters aren’t bad but they also aren’t great. I loved the concept of the 3 queens with 3 specialties, though. I was extremely frustrated with Mirabella’s love at first sight romance. Without any magical reason saying they are fated, then I am seriously pissed at the two of them.

There was also something about the writing itself that seemed… off. Something in the third person format was jarring and felt impersonal.

Overall, I currently give this book 3 stars. It was good enough to make me want to read the book where the ACTUAL good stuff is supposed to be, it seems. If the second book does not live up, however, I will be back with an update and a demotion to 2 stars.

Update: Yeah… the second book wasn’t better. This is now a 2 star book. Review to come soon.

3 stars · Dystopian · Fantasy · Young Adult

Review: The Belles by Dhonielle Clayton

 

I gave this book 3.5 stars. Until the end, I would have given it a mediocre 3, but more on why in a minute. 

A brief summary from Goodreads:

Camellia Beauregard is a Belle. In the opulent world of Orléans, Belles are revered, for they control Beauty, and Beauty is a commodity coveted above all else. In Orléans, the people are born gray, they are born damned, and only with the help of a Belle and her talents can they transform and be made beautiful.

But it’s not enough for Camellia to be just a Belle. She wants to be the favorite—the Belle chosen by the Queen of Orléans to live in the royal palace, to tend to the royal family and their court, to be recognized as the most talented Belle in the land. But once Camellia and her Belle sisters arrive at court, it becomes clear that being the favorite is not everything she always dreamed it would be. Behind the gilded palace walls live dark secrets, and Camellia soon learns that the very essence of her existence is a lie—that her powers are far greater, and could be more dangerous, than she ever imagined. And when the queen asks Camellia to risk her own life and help the ailing princess by using Belle powers in unintended ways, Camellia now faces an impossible decision.”

This first book is very much the world building book. Camille, a belle, is raised an innocent, sheltered life. She’s a sweet girl that wants to help people learn to love themselves. When she gets old enough to start working though, she gets a rude awakening into reality. There are some not so great things going on in the real world related to the belles.

At first, I was intrigued, but the mysteries stayed mostly vague, and no plot really happened (the end is the exception). There was a lot of description of pretty people and pretty dresses, and after a while it got dull.

I was really getting bored, until it got to the end and the story started happening. At the end, there starts to be a plot. At the end, there starts to be some action. The end is what led me to actually have interest in reading the second one.

I know that a lot of other people liked this book more than I did (and even in interested in the sequel), so I would recommend this book. I think it also makes a difference knowing this is meant for world building, not plot. I will be reading the second one.

4 stars · Dystopian · Science Fiction/ Steampunk · Young Adult

Mini Review: Thunderhead by Neil Shusterman

This sequel did not disappoint. There continues to be great perspective and things to ponder. The “journal” entries in this one are the thoughts of the Thunderhead. It was really interesting to see the rationale for some of the things in its world.

Here is a  summary from Goodreads:

“Rowan has gone rogue, and has taken it upon himself to put the Scythedom through a trial by fire. Literally. In the year since Winter Conclave, he has gone off-grid, and has been striking out against corrupt scythes—not only in MidMerica, but across the entire continent. He is a dark folk hero now—“Scythe Lucifer”—a vigilante taking down corrupt scythes in flames.

Citra, now a junior scythe under Scythe Curie, sees the corruption and wants to help change it from the inside out, but is thwarted at every turn, and threatened by the “new order” scythes. Realizing she cannot do this alone—or even with the help of Scythe Curie and Faraday, she does the unthinkable, and risks being “deadish” so she can communicate with the Thunderhead—the only being on earth wise enough to solve the dire problems of a perfect world. But will it help solve those problems, or simply watch as perfection goes into decline?”
There are multiple, in depth storylines to follow about the main characters from book 1 as well as a few more.

The complexity of this world and how well it is put together continues to amaze me. I loved learning about it’s intricacies throughout the book, woven into the plot.

I don’t how else to describe it without taking the magic of the discovery away. I loved it just as much as I did the first book, and can’t wait to read the next one. I would highly recommend if you enjoyed Scythe.  I gave this book a rating of 4 stars.

 

 

1 & 2 stars · Dystopian · Young Adult

Review: They Both Die at the End by Adam Silvera

published Sept. 5th, 2017; 368 pages

Description from Goodreads:

On September 5, a little after midnight, Death-Cast calls Mateo Torrez and Rufus Emeterio to give them some bad news: They’re going to die today.
Mateo and Rufus are total strangers, but, for different reasons, they’re both looking to make a new friend on their End Day. The good news: There’s an app for that. It’s called the Last Friend, and through it, Rufus and Mateo are about to meet up for one last great adventure—to live a lifetime in a single day.”

Continue reading “Review: They Both Die at the End by Adam Silvera”

4 stars · Dystopian · Science Fiction/ Steampunk · Young Adult

Review: The Diabolic 1 & 2 by S.J. Kincaid

Book 1: Published Nov 1st, 2016; 416 pages

Nemesis is a Diabolic, a creature trained from birth to be a guard and protector for her owner Sidonia. When Sidonia is summoned to the capital as a war prisoner, the family sets out to find a way to send Nemesis in her place. Continue reading “Review: The Diabolic 1 & 2 by S.J. Kincaid”

4 stars · Dystopian · Science Fiction/ Steampunk · Young Adult

Review: Scythe by Neal Shustermann

Published Nov 22nd, 2016; 435 pages

(The sequel was just published Jan 9, 2018. I haven’t read it yet, but I’m super excited!)

I loved this book! Taking place in the future where the world’s problems are solved, including death, scythes were formed to keep overpopulation at bay. But while corruption in the world is no longer an issue, factions of belief have started to rise in the scythedom.  Continue reading “Review: Scythe by Neal Shustermann”

3 stars · Dystopian · Fantasy · Young Adult

Mini Review: Fireblood by Elly Blake

Published Sept 12th, 2017; 416 pages

This is book 2 in the Frostblood series.

Summary from Goodreads:

“Against all odds, Ruby has defeated the villainous Frost King and melted his throne of ice. But the bloodthirsty Minax that was trapped inside is now haunting her kingdom and everyone she loves. The answers to its demise may lie to the south in Sudesia, the land of the Firebloods, and a country that holds the secrets to Ruby’s powers and past…
Continue reading “Mini Review: Fireblood by Elly Blake”