The Heart of Betrayal (The Remnant Chronicles #2)

Started: July 25, 2017
Finished: July 28, 2017

Language: English
Rating: 5/5 stars


“The rules of reason build towers that reach past the treetops. The rules of trust build towers that reach past the stars.”


Actual rating: 4.5 out of 5 stars

Going into this, I was terrified. I loved the first book a lot more than I had expected and I was terrified that, now that I knew who the Prince and the Assassin were, some of the appeal would slide away. As would the idea of a love triangle that did not drive me mad.

I should not have been afraid.

The writing in this series is exceptional! The world building, the character development (for Lia and Kaden in particular) – amazing! And the love triangle – although there and a bit annoying at times – did not annoy me as much as I thought it would. Also I’m not sure which of the boys I’d root for. After the first book I would have said Rafe, but after getting to know Kaden a bit more in this book… yeah, I’m not sure. Although, I’m not sure Lia actually needs to end up with either of them. She’s a pretty strong, independent woman who could take on the world without any man – Prince or Assassin – as her husband.

As we follow Lia’s adventures in Venda – as a prized captive of the Komizar – we get to see the part of this world that no one else has. We get to see the poverty of Venda and how the Komizar has turned that into an argument as to why they should wage war on the other nations, along with a lot of religious and mythological arguments that work with the tribes of this nation. It’s politics and mind games – which I am actually a fan of. I am a Ravenclaw, after all; I love a good puzzle.

What brings my rating down? Actually the loose threads. At the end of the book Lia and Rafe get out of Venda, which I fear might make it more difficult to solve some of the puzzles left there. Especially since Kaden, still in Venda, is not in the best position to investigate – judging by the last scene – nor does he know everything that Lia figured out. Maybe this will be cleared up in the next book, but I would have liked to see more of those threads cleared in this, as I do fear there will be too much to settle and explain in the final installment of this trilogy.

However; that cliffhanger.
OH
MY
GOD!


I read this book for the BookTubeAThon 2017 (Challenge #1: Read a book with a person on the cover)

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Princess of Glass (Princesses of Westfalin #2)

Started: July 28, 2017
Finished: July 28, 2017

Language: English
Rating: 4/5 stars


“Dancing? You, Poppy? I never thought…”


I adore this series. It’s one of the sweeter retellings I’ve found so far – much more adapted to younger readers, but still enjoyable for those of us (like myself) who’s older. And I like how the author interpreted the end of the original story of the 12 Dancing Princesses – “They lived happily ever after and they never danced again.” – in order to explore what happily ever after and no more dancing meant.

In this story, we follow Poppy, one of the princesses made to dance every night for the King Under Stone. In an attempt to bring peace between the nations the royals have begun an exchange program – and Poppy has left her home country to stay in anot. Another exchange student is Prince Christian of Danelaw and the two become friends. One of the servants at the house Poppy is staying at, however, has a dark secret and wants to snatch Prince Christian for herself, and when a mysterious woman charms the court – wooing all the men and making all the women jealous – Poppy finds herself having to solve a magical mystery. Who is the woman with the glass slippers?

This retelling of Cinderella is much more in tune with the original story – not the Disney one – which I prefer. That some problems are solved far too easy, some of the characters feel a bit flat and the story progresses quite fast (which is most likely perfectly fine with a younger audience, but perhaps not with an older one) prevents me from giving it a 5 star rating. But definitely a good book and I am looking forward to reading the next one already!


I read this book for the BookTubeAThon 2017 (Challenge #3: Finish a book in one day)

Binge

Started: July 26, 2017
Finished: July 27, 2017

Language: English
Rating: 5/5 stars


“When life throws a wrench in your plans, catch it and build an IKEA bookshelf.”


Tyler seriously cannot disappoint me!

When this book was announced and, later, when it actually came out in print, I had my mind set on getting a physical copy of it. And then other things came between me and actually getting the damn book. So I decided to listen to it as an audio book instead.

I WAS NOT DISAPPOINTED!

Tyler reads this book himself – and adds comments, questions and other things just for the listeners. Which does make this audio book feel like you’re sitting in the same room as him, just listening to him telling his stories. Because, comments and questions and other things are sweet and all, but they do not measure up to the stories.

I didn’t start actively following Tyler Oakley until about three years ago, around the time when I was doing my last semester at university. Sure, I knew who he was and had watched a few of his videos prior to that, but that was when I actually subscribed and started watching everything he uploaded.

However, videos lasting a few minutes can only tell so much. In this book, Tyler tells longer stories, more intricate ones, ones that he has sometimes only mentioned in passing but never delved into properly, or ones he has not touched at all. It’s pure and real, funny and sad, and it doesn’t take roundabout routes to point out the truth.

Two words; read it. Read this book. Right now!


I read this book for the BookTubeAThon 2017 (Challenge #3: Read about a character that is very different from you)

I got “Tower of Dawn” early?!

Yes, first of all: I apologize about the lack of posts here this last month. I have basically been doing my best to adjust to working fulltime again. I’ve felt guilty about not posting stuff, but I felt I had to prioritize getting back into the rhythm of teaching and getting to know my colleagues and students. And, honestly, I feel absolutely amazing after three weeks of work; I came home with a broad grin on my face yesterday and this morning I woke up at six (still smiling) and started getting out of bed thinking “Today’s going to be just as good as yesterday” and then realized it was Saturday XD

But today has been good because of the title of this post.

Yes, you read that right; I got Tower of Dawn by Sarah J Maas early.

I am not sure how this actually came about to happen – and now I’m freaking out because I have no one to talk to about it (I’m about 40% through as of right now) – but it is absolutely INCREDIBLE! Definitely one of my favourite novels of the series so far (might have something to do with Chaol Westfall being the lead……)

I am planning to read the full novel – 660 pages of brilliance – this weekend and I will get a review up as soon as possible after that, but I do want to post reviews chronologically. But it will show up soon!

(and behind the cut you can find a bit of background information as to how this came about. not how I actually got the novel early because, as I said, I have no bloody idea, but a bit on how I got into the Throne of Glass series and how I acted a bit differently with this particular novel than I did with the others) Continue reading “I got “Tower of Dawn” early?!”

The Scorpion Rules (Prisoners of Peace #1)

Started: July 24, 2017
Finished: July 26, 2017

Language: English
Rating: 3/5 stars


You made tools of us. Have you never considered: the thing of a tool is that anyone may use it.


Actual rating: 2.5 out of 5 stars

This book has an interesting premise, certainly, and even though I got it because of the cover I looked forward to reading it because of that. Unfortunately, it felt a bit “meh”. The characters felt flat and there was no real character development. It took some time for the story to actually get interesting – and once that reached its climax and I felt like things might actually turn out quite good, it went back to falling flat.

I still decided to give this story a 2.5 because of the LGBT representation and because of that the general premise of the novel, but I don’t think I’ll read the sequel.


I read this book for the BookTubeAThon 2017 (Challenge #6: Read a book you bought because of the cover)

Tales from the Shadowhunter Academy

Started: July 16, 2017
Finished: July 21, 2017

Language: English
Rating: 4/5 stars


There were impressive stone paths and benches and even a statue of an angel that gave Simon nervous fits, since he was a Doctor Who fan. The angel wasn’t weeping, exactly, but it looked too depressed for Simon’s liking.


Average rating: 4.2/5 stars

Since this is a collection of short-stories, I’ll be rating and reviewing each story individually. Overall rating is the average of the individual stories’ ratings 🙂

Welcome to Shadowhunter Academy: 5/5 stars

What a wonderful introduction to this short story collection! George Lovelace became a new favourite of mine, and I loved how Simon stood up for the mundanes at the Academy. Wonderful!

The Lost Herondale: 3/5 stars

Enjoyed this story, but it felt a bit flat. Might have enjoyed it more if I’d read this prior to Lady Midnight.

The Whitechapel Fiend: 4/5 stars

Tessa! Will! Jem! Jack the Ripper! Oh, and Jace wasn’t too annoying.

Nothing But Shadows: 4/5 stars

I liked this story, but for some reason I didn’t find myself liking James Herondale that much… didn’t expect that.

The Evil We Love: 4/5 stars

This was an important story in today’s society and it should be mandatory to read! Reason why I took one star from the rating was that there were some storyline mistakes – like who didn’t fall for Izzy’s trick.

Pale Kings and Princes: 5/5 stars

HELEN BLACKTHORN!! TRUTH ABOUT THE PAST!! SIMON CHANGING PEOPLE’S MINDS!!

Bitter of Tongue: 4/5 stars

Mark Blackthorn and the Wild Hunt. Helen and Aline get married. I’m. Bloody. Crying! I would have liked more of the anti-faerie-things that featured in the previous short story, though, because they made the treatment of the Blackthorns feel really horrible.

The Fiery Trial: 4/5 stars

Magnus, Tessa and Jem, seriously, I see what you’re doing but I would appreciate not giving people heart attacks while testing if they’re compatible to be parabatai.

Born to Endless Night: 5/5 stars

I LOVE THIS STORY SO FRIKKING MUCH I HAVE RE-READ IT TWICE ALREADY OH MY GOD MAGNUS AND ALEC AND BABY MAX!!

Angels Twice Descending: 4/5 stars

Alright, so most of this story felt pretty flat. Everything sort of felt dragged out up until the ceremony. And then you BLOODY HAVE TO HIT ME WITH THAT?! (no, I’m not typing it out; read the story to find out what I mean)

Overall: A good collection of short stories. Enjoyable and filled with new pieces of information.

Red Days

Started: July 12, 2017
Finished: July 13, 2017

Language: English
Rating: 5/5 stars


If she did nothing it would haunt her for the rest of her life.


I received a copy of this novel from the author in return for an honest review.

Keiko is a young journalist at a British newspaper, writing articles that are assigned to her and not always exactly what she finds herself interested in. Then, one day, she is asked to go to Japan and do an article based on the events portrayed in the movie The Cove.

The Taiji Dolphin Slaughter.

This is the beginning of Keiko’s new life. She becomes involved with the activists trying to stop the slaughter from happening and uses her powers as a journalist to spread the word to the world. And although Keiko’s life and what she decided to do to help is fictional, the events that this book chronicles are not. They are real.

This book serves to further spread the word of the Taiji Dolphin Slaughter – to give people an idea of what happens to dolphins trapped in the cove outside this little Japanese village. It’s honest and doesn’t try to cover up anything. It will make you think, make you look into these things even more – which is a good thing. And thus I highly recommend that people read this novel.