REVIEW: When Life Gives You Demons – Jennifer Honeybourn (ARC)

35795953Title: When Life Gives You Demons
Author: Jennifer Honeybourn
Rating: ★★★★

ARC provided by the publisher. 

I would like to thank the awesome ladies at the Swoon Reads booth at BookCon for recommending this book; they had me sold at humorous contemporary + paranormal. I knew from the first page that I was going to be seriously entertained while reading this. When Life Gives You Demons was the perfect fun summer read!

In addition to trying to pass her classes and studying with her cute math tutor, Shelby spends her time outside of high school training to be an exorcist with her great-uncle, a Catholic priest. I think my favorite part of reading When Life Gives You Demons is how much it reminded of The Mediator series, which remains of my favorite series ever (seriously, if you don’t know what I’m talking about go check out those books). I love the premise of a high schooler that, in addition to worrying about exams and crushes, also has to find time to expel the ghosts / demons lurking around. I do wish the book had been a bit longer; the ending definitely felt rushed and I think it could have benefited from a few more chapters. When Life Gives You Demons was extremely fun and light-hearted and I really hope to see more books featuring plots similar to this in the future!

WWW Wednesday #9

WWW Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by Sam @ Taking on a World of Words in which the three W’s stand for:

  • What are you currently reading?
  • What did you recently finish reading?
  • What do you think you’ll read next?

35424762WHAT ARE YOU CURRENTLY READING?

Nyxia Unleashed (The Nyxia Triad #2) by Scott Reintgen

 

 


36010223WHAT DID YOU RECENTLY FINISH READING?

Smoke in the Sun (Flame in the Mist #2) by Renée Ahdieh

 

 


32051720WHAT DO YOU THINK YOU’LL READ NEXT?

Wicked Like a Wildfire by Lana Popović

REVIEW: Spinning Silver – Naomi Novik (ARC)

36896898Title: Spinning Silver
Author: Naomi Novik
Rating: ★★★★½

ARC provided by the publisher.

“The real story isn’t half as pretty as the one you’ve heard.”

Naomi Novik is extremely talented when it comes to fairytale retellings, and this was no exception. Spinning Silver was completely magic and totally atmospheric. She does such a tremendous job weaving an enchanting story that draws inspiration from European folklore and pulls you in from the first page.

Spinning Silver is a very loose retelling of the fairytale, Rumpelstiltskin. In addition to the main plot, there are a few subplots as well which intertwine together to tell one overall story. It’s told through the points of view of three very different girls, along with a few other side characters who lend their voices. 

Miryem – The moneylender’s daughter. She takes over her father’s business after he repeatedly fails to collect the money they’re owed. Her notoriety eventually reaches the ears of the Staryk lord, who challenges her to turn his silver into gold. She’s determine, brave, and resourceful.

Irina – The duke’s daughter. Her father hopes to marry her off to the young Tsar, who also happens to be possessed by a fire demon. Irina was so courageous and intelligent, and I absolutely loved her part of the story. Dare I say it, but I think I loved her plot even better than the ‘main’ plot. I want an entire book about Irina and Mirnatius. 

Wanda – Miryem’s servant, who eventually becomes a friend of the Mandelstam family. Her and her brother end up on the run after committing a crime. While I could see how her POV has an importance to the story, I could have done without it honestly.

The character growth in this book was amazing, as was all the different types of relationships that built and changed over the course of the story. We all know by now that hate-to-love and slow-burn romances are my aesthetic, and Naomi Novik has blessed us with not one, but TWO – and they are real good. Seriously, you guys are in for such a treat! I loved the ending; it was utterly perfect. I do, however, really wish there had been just one more chapter from about Irina to wrap up her storyline. Spinning Silver is an enchanting, magical, inspiring story that is an absolute treasure to read! 

#ARCstravaganza: Seafire – Natalie C. Parker

Happy Monday! #ARCstravangaza 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.


Seafire – Natalie C. Parker

IMG_7967

 


About the Book

37822534Title: Seafire (Seafire #1)
Author: Natalie C. Parker
Release: August 28, 2018

After her family is killed by corrupt warlord Aric Athair and his bloodthirsty army of Bullets, Caledonia Styx is left to chart her own course on the dangerous and deadly seas. She captains her ship, the Mors Navis, with a crew of girls and women just like her, whose lives have been turned upside down by Aric and his men. The crew has one misson: stay alive, and take down Aric’s armed and armored fleet.

But when Caledonia’s best friend and second-in-command just barely survives an attack thanks to help from a Bullet looking to defect, Caledonia finds herself questioning whether or not to let him join their crew. Is this boy the key to taking down Aric Athair once and for all…or will he threaten everything the women of the Mors Navis have worked for?

REVIEW: The Bird and the Blade – Megan Bannen

32702487Title: The Bird and the Blade
Author: Megan Bannen
Rating: ★★★★★

“And wilderness is paradise now.”

I am writing this review from the grave, because this book has slayed me. I knew going into this that it was going to hurt spectacularly: I thought that by reading the other reviews I would be prepared for the inevitable heartbreaking ending, but I underestimated Megan Bannen’s ability to completely annihilate my emotions. The Bird and the Blade was a fascinating, compelling, stunning story that captured my heart and attention from the very beginning. 

The story was both unique and intriguing in that it blended historical elements of the Mongol Empire with the Italian opera, Turandot, and it did so seamlessly. I really enjoyed the pacing and the format of the book; we start with a glimpse of the end, before jumping back to the beginning and following the characters’ story from there. I loved Jinghua. She was unlike so many other Young Adult heroines we typically encounter in fantasy. She isn’t exceptionally beautifully, or remarkably skilled in fighting, or even overly bright. She’s average and plain, and that was what makes her both human and relatable. As the story unfolds, we slowly learn more about her and the secrets she keeps and she becomes an even more dynamic character. I also loved the changing interactions between her and the other characters as the story progresses; the reluctant friendship she forms with Timur and the slow-burn romance that develops with Khalaf.

While it contains plenty of action and political intrigue, The Bird and the Blade is more of a love story than a fantasy. However, it was so unbelievably beautiful and captivating that it didn’t even strike me as being that way until after I had finished and could reflect back on the book. And even though I had expected the tears and anguish, the ending was still a sucker punch to the face. The story ends in a way that is both heart-warming and heart-wrenching, and altogether unforgettable. The Bird and the Blade was a breathtaking, impressive book and definitely one of my favorites of the year.