REVIEW: The Gilded Wolves – Roshani Chokshi (ARC)

39863498Title: The Gilded Wolves (The Gilded Wolves #1)
Author: Roshani Chokshi
Rating: ★★★★½

ARC provided by the publisher through NetGalley.

Roshani Chokshi continues to impress me with her effortless skill and crafting marvelous stories and endearing characters. A lot of young adult fantasy/heist books have been lauded as the next Six of Crows, and so far I’ve been disappointment by the ones I’ve read. And while I’m hesitant to compare The Gilded Wolves to it – they are each their own completely unique story – I truly believe that fans of Six of Crows are going to be as enamored by The Gilded Wolves as I was. 

“I work alone,” said Zofia.
Enrique rolled his eyes. “Most women kill to be alone with me.”
“I have learned that something does not have to be animate in order to use the word ‘kill,'” said Zofia. “Perhaps these women you are referencing are killing their expectations?”

The world created here can only be described as opulent and magical. Roshani has written such a unique story full of dark magic, thrilling adventures, and a diverse cast of compelling characters. From the mysteries and secrets, to the heists and plot twists, there is a lot of good stuff going on in this book. One of my favorite aspects was the interactions between the characters. There are a lot of different dynamics to love and each was written so beautifully and believably. 

Séverin – French-Algerian leader of the group, wants nothing more than to protect and care for his friends. He thrives off the idea of revenge and high-key pines after Laila.

“Neither of them could afford to lose sight of their prize, and so one night in each other’s arms stayed as one mistake, and the memory of it was shoved into the dark.”

Hypnos – Heir of a French aristocrat and descendant of a slave on his mother’s side. Definitely grows on you as the story evolves. He has some of the funniest lines in the book and honestly, he just wants friends. 

“You’ll like working with me, I promise! I’m fabulous at parties, have excellent taste in menswear etcetera etcetera,” said Hypnos, waving his hand. “And if you don’t agree to this, I’ll break every bone in their bodies, and etch your name onto the splinters.”

Zofia – Socially awkward cinnamon roll with a few OCD tendencies. Really loves sugar cookies and mathematical equations. 

Séverin rolled his eyes. “Zofia, tell him he’s pretty.”
Zofia didn’t look up from her tea. “I am personally undecided, but if we’re assessing based on objectivity then according to the principles of the Golden Ratio, also known as phi, which is approximately 1.618, your facial beauty is mathematically pleasing.”

Enrique – Spanish-Filipino, bisexual. Obsessed with history and sarcasm (like me) and full of fun facts that people get tired of listening to (also like me). 

Tristan – Like a brother to Séverin, a bit of a recluse with a large pet spider and an affinity for botanical properties.

Laila – Indian made-up girl with a tragic backstory and the epitome of a mom friend. She’s fierce and loyal and likes to bake and basically has earned the role of My Favorite Character. Give her all the happiness.

Hypnos laughed. “I adore you already! So imperious! I bet Séverin likes to be bossed around a little, doesn’t he?”

And speaking of character dynamics, I love everything going on with the romances. We have one romance which is essentially mutual pining and angst, and it’s like Roshani has read all of my previous reviews of books and wrote this specifically for me. I’m also totally on board for the love triangle Enrique has going on, and although I’m already trash for one of the possibilities, I’m also a big fan of the other possibility as well. 

“What on earth are you doing?”
“I am imitating patterns of flirtation.”
“Wait. You’re flirting. With…me?

Basically, this book is amazing and should totally be on your TBR if it isn’t already. I highly recommend this for fans of Roshani Chokshi’s other works or those who love Six of CrowsThe Gilded Wolves is a thrilling book full of heists, loyal friends, and magic. The ending crushed my soul and I have no idea what I’m going to do while I wait for the next book in the series. 

REVIEW: The Hating Game – Sally Thorne

25883848Title: The Hating Game
Author: Sally Thorne
Rating: ★★★★★

“Here’s a fact. Hating someone is exhausting. Each pulse of blood in my veins takes me closer to death. I waste these ending minutes with someone who genuinely despises me.”

“I have a theory. Hating someone feels disturbingly similar to being in love with them.”

If you haven’t figured it out by now, I’m complete trash for a love-to-hate relationship and witty banter. The Hating Game was everything I never knew I needed in my life, and I wish I could go back in time and slap myself every time I saw this book on my TBR but skipped over it to read something else. 

“But you kissed me. Why would you do that?”
“I needed to test a theory I’ve had for a while. And you really, really kissed me back.”

The Hating Game had all my favorite tropes for both a romantic comedy and a romance novel. It also had a few little twists to those tropes that were absolutely amazing and really added to my enjoyment. The highlight of the book were the characters themselves. I didn’t have a lot in common with Lucy (other than her inability to say no to others at work), and in fact we seemed to be opposites in a lot a ways (right down to our heights), but she was such a fantastic protagonist. She’s quirky, sweet, smart, and hard-working. Then there’s Josh. At first, he comes across as an arrogant – albeit very good looking – pain in Lucy’s ass, but as the story continued, we see the layers to Josh peel back and oh boy. World, I have new book boyfriend and his name is Joshua Templeman. The fact that he had insecurities and was self-conscious about himself and his body was so refreshing for a male lead in a romance book. He wasn’t full of himself and had a more reserved personality, and yet still had an air of confidence that was totally sexy. 

“He’s looking at me with fierce tenderness in his eyes. Eyes like he loves me. Now I know I must be dreaming.”

I now understand all the high praises and great reviews I’ve seen about this book, because it deserves all it. I devoured this. The Hating Game is now one of my favorite contemporary romance novels and I can’t wait to read more from Sally Thorne.

Top Ten Tuesdays: Backlist Books

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme created by The Broke and the Bookish and now hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl. As any bibliophile knows, our TBR seems to never stop growing (and mine seems to give me a strong case of anxiety), and so the books we meant to read end up getting pushed farther and farther back. Here are the top ten books on my backlist!

1. THE ALCHEMISTS OF LOOM by Elise Kova
2. DAUGHTER OF ALBION by Ilka Tampke
3. THE EPIC CRUSH OF GENIE LO by F.C. Yee

4. EVERY HEART A DOORWAY by Seanan McGuire
5. 
FROSTBLOOD by Elly Blake

6. THE HATING GAME by Sally Thorne
7. THE LIBRARY OF FATES by Aditi Khorana
8. 
RED RISING by Pierce Brown

9. ROOMIES by Christina Lauren
10. 
THE VALIANT by Lesley Livingston

#ARCstravaganza: Crown of Feathers – Nicki Pau Preto

Happy Monday! #ARCstravaganza is a weekly meme now hosted by Flavia the Bibliophile where readers can show off their wonderful ARCs (Advanced Reader Copies) and spread the word about upcoming releases. For more information about this meme and its origins check out this post. I’ve had this ARC since May, but I’m finally going to be getting around to reading it! 


CROWN OF FEATHERS – NICKI PAU PRETO

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ABOUT THE BOOK

35715518Title: Crown of Feathers
Author: Nicki Pau Preto
Release: February 12, 2019 

In a world ruled by fierce warrior queens, a grand empire was built upon the backs of Phoenix Riders—legendary heroes who soared through the sky on wings of fire—until a war between two sisters ripped it all apart.

Sixteen years later, Veronyka is a war orphan who dreams of becoming a Phoenix Rider from the stories of old. After a shocking betrayal from her controlling sister, Veronyka strikes out alone to find the Riders—even if that means disguising herself as a boy to join their ranks.

Just as Veronyka finally feels like she belongs, her sister turns up and reveals a tangled web of lies between them that will change everything. And meanwhile, the new empire has learned of the Riders’ return and intends to destroy them once and for all.

Sometimes the title of queen is given. Sometimes it must be taken.

BLOG TOUR + GIVEAWAY: West – ARC Review

Welcome to my stop on the West book tour! Thank you to Rockstar Book Tours for organizing the tour and allowing me to participate as a tour host!

Thank you to HMH for Young Readers for providing me with a copy of East. You can find my review of the first book here!


ABOUT THE BOOK

31822495Title: West (East #2)
Author: Edith Pattou
Release: October 23, 2018
Publisher: HMH Books for Young Readers
Format: Hardcover, eBook, Audiobook
Pages: 528

In the sequel to the beloved high fantasy East, Rose sets off on a perilous journey to find her true love when he goes missing in a thrilling tale of danger, magic, adventure, and revenge.

When Rose first met Charles, he was trapped in the form of a white bear. To rescue him, Rose traveled to the land that lay east of the sun and west of the moon to defeat the evil Troll Queen. Now Rose has found her happily-ever-after with Charles—until a sudden storm destroys his ship and he is presumed dead. But Rose doesn’t believe the shipwreck was an act of nature, nor does she believe Charles is truly dead. Something much more sinister is at work. With mysterious and unstoppable forces threatening the lives of the people she loves, Rose must once again set off on a perilous journey. And this time, the fate of the entire world is at stake.

Goodreads | Amazon | AudibleBarnes and Noble | iBooksBook Depository


REVIEW

ARC provided by the publisher. 

If East is a whimsical, magical fairytale, then West is it’s darker, more mature sister novel about what happens after the happily every after, and how things don’t always remain that way.

Everything I loved about the first book was also present here: the fairytale-esque aspects, the magic, the bonds between family and friends, the adventure-filled quests, and lovable characters. But the book also has some grimmer aspects, and our beloved characters go through some really tough times – and they don’t always end well. Rose is the same determined, caring young woman that she was in East, but now that she’s a mother, it was great to see her grow even more and the unconditional love she has for her son and Charles. 

West is not as whimsical and light-hearted as East, but there was still so much that I absolutely loved about it. From the characters, to the world, to the folklore elements, there’s something wonderful about this book, and I believe fans of East will not be disappointment with this long-awaited sequel. 

★ ★ ★ ★ ½


ABOUT THE AUTHOR

EdithEdith Pattou is the author of Ghosting, a contemporary novel for young adults, told in free verse. She also wrote three award-winning fantasy novels for young adults – East, a retelling of the Norwegian folk tale “East of the Sun and West of the Moon,” and the two Songs of Eirren, Hero’s Song and Fire Arrow. She is also the author of the New York Times bestselling picture book, Mrs. Spitzer’s Garden.

She was born in Evanston, Illinois, grew up in Winnetka, and was a teenager in the city of Chicago where she attended Francis W. Parker School. She completed her B.A. at Scripps College in Claremont, California where she won the Crombie Allen Award for creative writing. She later completed a Masters degree in English Literature at Claremont Graduate School, followed by a Masters of Library and Information Science at UCLA.

She has worked for a medical association, a clothing boutique, a recording studio, the Playboy Foundation, a public television station, a school library, two public libraries, two advertising agencies, and two bookstores.

She has lived in Chicago, Los Angeles, Denver, Durham, NC, Cambridge, England, Stockholm, Sweden, and currently resides with her husband, Charles, in Columbus, Ohio.

Website | Goodreads | Twitter | Instagram | Facebook


GIVEAWAY DETAILS

Three (3) winners will receive a finished copy of WestUS only.

✨ ENTER HERE ✨


FOLLOW THE TOUR

Week One:
October 15 | Rhythmicbooktrovert 
October 16 | A Backwards Story 
October 17 | Forever Lost in Literature 
October 18 | Mythical Books 
October 19 | Patriotic Bookaholic 

Week Two:
October 22 | Read, Eat, Love.

October 23 | Dani Reviews Things 
October 24 | Adventures and Reading
October 25 | BookHounds YA
October 26 | Jena Brown Writes

Week Three:
October 29 | Ace Reads
October 30 | Novel Novice
October 31 | All the Ups and Downs
November 1 | Rockin’ Book Reviews
November 2 | Paws and Paperbacks

Week Four: 
November 5 | Smada’s Book Smack
November 6 | if the book will be too difficult
November 7 | Vesper Dreams
November 8 | Oh Hey! Books.
November 9 | Two Chicks on Books