BLOG TOUR: Pride and Premeditation – Tirzah Price (ARC Review)

Welcome to my stop on the Pride and Premeditation book tour! Thank you to TBR and Beyond Tours for organizing the tour and allowing me to participate as a tour host!


Title: Pride and Premeditation (Jane Austen Murder Mystery #1)
Tirzah Price
Release: April 6, 2021
Publisher: Harper Teen
Genre: YA Historical Fiction

When a scandalous murder shocks London high society, seventeen-year-old aspiring lawyer Lizzie Bennet seizes the opportunity to prove herself, despite the interference of Mr. Fitzwilliam Darcy, the stern young heir to the prestigious firm Pemberley Associates.

Convinced the authorities have imprisoned the wrong person, Lizzie vows to solve the murder on her own. But as the case—and her feelings for Darcy—become more complicated, Lizzie discovers that her dream job could make her happy, but it might also get her killed.

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ARC provided by Harper Teen through NetGalley.

Pride and Premeditation is a Jane Austen retelling with a murder mystery twist and I was seriously impressed with this book! It was enjoyable, fun, and an excellent new take on a beloved classic.

My favorite thing about this book was how well it incorporated elements of Pride and Prejudice. The characters and major plot points remained, staying true to their source material, but the rest of the story was uniquely woven around them to give it a fresh feel. The murder mystery also added an aspect of unpredictability that I always find important when reading retellings, and this was done perfectly.

Tirzah Price is very clearly a seasoned writer, and it really shows in her debut book. The writing was engaging, the pacing was excellent, and the weaving of Pride and Prejudice elements with originality was cleverly done. I look forward to reading more Jane Austen murder mysteries from her in the future!

★ ★ ★ ½


Tirzah Price grew up on a farm in Michigan, where she read every book she could get her hands on and never outgrew her love for YA fiction. She holds an MFA in Writing for Children & Young Adults from Vermont College of Fine Arts, and is a former bookseller and librarian. Now, she’s a contributing editor at Book Riot, where she writes about YA books and cohosts the All the Books and Read Harder podcasts. When she’s not writing, reading, or thinking about YA books, she splits her time between experimenting in the kitchen and knitting enough socks to last the fierce Michigan winters. Tirzah is pronounced TEER-ZUH.

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Let’s Talk Bookish: Cliches and Tropes

Let’s Talk Bookish is a weekly meme, created and hosted by Rukky @ Eternity Books and Dani @ Literary Lion, where we discuss certain topics, share our opinions, and spread the love by visiting each other’s posts. You can check out more about this meme here!

The topic for this Friday is about cliches and tropes included in books.


Tropes are recurring themes or patterns frequently used in literature. Every book and story has some kind of trope and that’s because they work. Those recurring themes and devices become tropes over time because it’s been shown that they’re popular and well received by readers. For instance, the (dreaded) love triangle trope. Love triangles showed up in YA books everywhere in the late 2000s/early 2010s, sparking many Team A vs. Team B discussions amongst readers. Whether you loved or hated that trope, it kept showing up in books because it was a part of the YA formula at the time that proved popular and generated sales.

Tropes also give books a small degree of predictability that can be helpful to the success of a book. When a synopsis hints at a well-loved trope, readers are given a sense of what to expect from a story and are more likely to pick up that book. Tropes are typically selling points for many readers. One of the best things about reading a book with a popular/well-loved trope is the uncertainty surrounding it. Tropes encompass an overall theme or plot device, but there are so many different ways for authors to incorporate those tropes into their story. The specific way in which tropes are written can lead them to be considered either successful or “overdone” within a book.

On the other hand, I would argue that cliches are “bad” tropes, or tropes that have proven to become unpopular, are overdone, or executed poorly. Cliches could also be certain phrases or characterizations that are used frequently. One of the best examples of a cliche is the phrase, “I let out a breath I didn’t realize I was holding.” This phrase is so over used, that it’s become a bit of a joke in bookish community. Another great example of cliche is the Mary Sue/Gary Stu characterization of a protagonist, in which they lack any flaws, are universally like by all other characters, and can easily and unrealistically overcome any and all obstacles thrown their way.

One important distinction that can be made between tropes and cliches, is that cliches are more subjective. Every reader’s tastes are different, and therefore what I may consider a cliche is not the same as what someone else might consider cliche.


Enemies-to-Lovers Romance – This is the crème de la crème of tropes, in my opinion. Give me two characters that can’t stand each other guts slowly develop feelings over the course of a book (or series) and I will be in heaven.

There’s Only One Bed – My greatest delight is reading a book and the realization dawning on me of where the author is taking the next chapter. I’m not sure where or how this trope originated but I would like to thank each and every author who’s ever utilized it.

Heists – These are always such fun books! I honestly think a lot of my love for these tropes stems from my love of heist movies. Nothing beats a team of well-loved characters working together to pull off an amazing heist.

Morally Grey Characters – I’m a sucker for a good anti-hero/heroine. I love watching them either start out that way and slowly redeem themselves as the story goes on, or begin good and watch their descent as they begin to make questionable choices.

If you want to read about all my favorite romance tropes, you can check out this post!


The Chosen One – I don’t know why, but this trope has always bothered me. A lot of the chosen one characters seem to have a Mary Sue/Gary Stu characterization which may be why I have such an issue with it.

“Not Like Other Girls” – Nothing gets on my nerve more than seeing a character describe herself as ~unlike other girls~ or even worse, when the love interest says he likes the protagonist because she’s ~not like other girls~. Ew.

Love Triangles – Love triangles are the bane of my existence because they are wholly unnecessary to the plot of the book. There have been only a few instances where I think they were executed well, but usually I absolutely hate when I realize a love triangle is developing.

Alpha Male Love Interest – One day I’ll write an entire post on the issues with toxic relationships and romanticizing abuse within the YA genre, but for now I’ll stick with talking about how much I hate the overbearing, possessive love interests.

What are your favorite tropes? What tropes do you think have become cliche? Let’s discuss in the comments!

ARC REVIEW: Perfect on Paper – Sophie Gonzales ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ½

Title: Perfect on Paper
Author: Sophie Gonzales
Rating: ★★★★½

ARC provided by Wednesday Books through NetGalley.

It’s not often that a book meets all of your expectations so superbly, but that’s exactly what Perfect on Paper managed to do. From the protagonist, to the romantic tropes, to the excellent writing, this book was a wonderful little story that made me giddy with happiness.

Darcy Philips was the star of the book and I don’t have a single complaint about her characterization. She was relatable, flawed, remarkable, stood up for her beliefs, and had such tremendous growth throughout the novel. How could you not root for a heroine like that? I also really loved Sophie Gonzales’ commentary on the erasure of bisexuality when dating a member of the opposite gender. I’m not a member of the LGBTQ+ community and therefore have no authority on the matter, however, I thought the way the issues were brought up and handled were brilliantly done.

The romance was impressively written. Perfect on Paper somehow managed to combine my love of the fake dating trop a lá To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before with the sweet, slow-burn that starts as friendship that made me love If I’m Being Honest so much. I love watching a romance unfold through characters’ thoughts and actions and not just being told, and that’s exactly what we are given in Perfect on Paper. In short, it was spectacular.

Perfect on Paper checked all of the right boxes to make this a tremendously heartwarming and satisfying novel. I think this book will appeal to a lot of readers and I highly recommend picking it up in March!

ARC REVIEW: Lore – Alexandra Bracken ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ½

Title: Lore
Author: Alexandra Bracken
Rating: ★★★★½

Thank you to Disney books for sending me an ARC!

Alexandra Bracken’s newest standalone fantasy has seriously impressed me. From the Greek mythology to the deadly competition giving off Hunger Games vibes to the dark urban fantasy setting, there was so much about Lore that thrilled me.

The premise almost sounded too good to be true, but the writing and execution of the plot were excellent. The way Greek mythology was woven into a modern world was so clever and impressive. I was hooked from the first few chapters and completely intrigued by both the world created and Lore, our protagonist. Lore was an absolute fantastic heroine. She was resourceful, spirited, and resilient. It was so easy to root for her as she worked towards saving those she loved while seeking revenge for her slain family.

The pacing was another aspect of the story that Alexandra Bracken nailed. This book is long, and when books are this length there are usually spots where the plot begins to slow down. However, I found no such issue here! The pacing was perfect throughout the novel, and just when you think it’s about to slow down, another element is thrown in to build the suspense again. My attention was easily held throughout the entire book and it made reading this that much more enjoyable.

Lore reminds me of a darker, more mature Percy Jackson perfect for fans of a good urban fantasy or stories featuring Greek mythology. I have nothing but praise for this book!

BOOK REVIEW: Kingdom of the Wicked – Kerri Maniscalco ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ½

Title: Kingdom of the Wicked (Kingdom of the Wicked #1)
Author: Kerri Maniscalco
Rating: ★★★½

Books that instantly transport readers into their atmospheric world are my favorite kind, and Kingdom of the Wicked does exactly that. From the prologue, we are introduced to a 19th-century setting that is dark, decadent, and devilishly delicious. Witches, demon Princes, dark magic, and Italian food?? There’s nothing more I could have asked for!

The story itself is pretty simplistic. I was really excited by the premise but overall the plot ended up being one of the downfalls. It felt predictable and underdeveloped. The plot twists were easily guessed and I was able to unravel most of the reveals. There were also quite a few plot holes and moments where I found it hard to believe Emilia could be that naive. Despite lacking the complexity I typically crave in stories, I did enjoy reading this and following Emilia as she navigated the secrets surrounding her sister’s death.

The dynamic between Emilia and Wrath is the saving grace of this novel, in my opinion. I’m obviously a huge fan of enemies-to-lovers, but the way these two were written was perfect. Between their magical pact and the sizzling chemistry, there was plenty to keep my invested in their romance.

If you’re looking for a book full of enticing romance, demons, witches, and familial relationships, this is for you. If you prefer your plots to be more developed and complex, this may not work as well. Overall, I found Kingdom of the Wicked to be an enjoyable story and look forward to reading the next book!