Posted in Fast-Forward Friday

Fast Forward Friday: The Prison Healer, 4/13/21

Hey y’all! In contrast to Throwback Thursday, I like to use Fridays to look forward to an upcoming release that I’m excited about! Today’s is The Prison Healer by Lynette Noni.
Expected Release: April 13, 2021

Why wait on this one?

  • A woman taking on some kind of to-the-death competition is pretty much the easiest way to get me to read a book. Add in the facts that they’re elemental based trials, there’s a prison involved, PLUS some kind of foreign-royal-rebellion-rescue mystery involved? Well, there’s pretty much no way I’m not reading this.
  • This sounds like it’s going to have strong Throne of Glass vibes, and that series was a game changer for me. I think this book has the potential to be really unoriginal and disappointing, BUT I also think that if it’s done well, it will be really really good. I hold out hope for the latter. ^.^
  • Creative challenges are fun to read about. I can’t wait to see what madness she has to face for a fire trial, or how her healing skills will inevitably come in handy somehow. There’s also just so much mystery packed into the blurb that I ALREADY am dying to know: who is this queen? Who is KIVA, really??

Summary

Seventeen-year-old Kiva Meridan has spent the last ten years fighting for survival in the notorious death prison, Zalindov, working as the prison healer.

When the Rebel Queen is captured, Kiva is charged with keeping the terminally ill woman alive long enough for her to undergo the Trial by Ordeal: a series of elemental challenges against the torments of air, fire, water, and earth, assigned to only the most dangerous of criminals.

Then a coded message from Kiva’s family arrives, containing a single order: “Don’t let her die. We are coming.” Aware that the Trials will kill the sickly queen, Kiva risks her own life to volunteer in her place. If she succeeds, both she and the queen will be granted their freedom.

But no one has ever survived.

With an incurable plague sweeping Zalindov, a mysterious new inmate fighting for Kiva’s heart, and a prison rebellion brewing, Kiva can’t escape the terrible feeling that her trials have only just begun.

Posted in Release Day!

Just published: The Infinity Courts by Akemi Dawn Bowman!

Hey y’all! Just a reminder that The Infinity Courts by Akemi Dawn Bowman published today! Check out the full review here or grab your own copy. 🙂

Recommended: eh, I guess
Cool concept, weak execution. Probably come for the series / idea more than the characters or plot or world-building or moral questions….

Summary

Eighteen-year-old Nami Miyamoto is certain her life is just beginning. She has a great family, just graduated high school, and is on her way to a party where her entire class is waiting for her—including, most importantly, the boy she’s been in love with for years. The only problem? She’s murdered before she gets there. When Nami wakes up, she learns she’s in a place called Infinity, where human consciousness goes when physical bodies die. She quickly discovers that Ophelia, a virtual assistant widely used by humans on Earth, has taken over the afterlife and is now posing as a queen, forcing humans into servitude the way she’d been forced to serve in the real world. Even worse, Ophelia is inching closer and closer to accomplishing her grand plans of eradicating human existence once and for all. As Nami works with a team of rebels to bring down Ophelia and save the humans under her imprisonment, she is forced to reckon with her past, her future, and what it is that truly makes us human.

Posted in Reviews

Review: The Gilded Ones by Namina Forna

The Gilded Ones by Namina Forna
Verdict: eh… underwhelming

Recommended: not really

If you read the blurb and are REALLY into it, give it a go. If you’re interested but not ravenous, probably don’t bother. Stay away if you want the dark moments to make you shiver, and stay away if you want characters who feel like people. Give it a shot if what you want is to learn about the world they live in.

Summary

Sixteen-year-old Deka lives in fear and anticipation of the blood ceremony that will determine whether she will become a member of her village. Already different from everyone else because of her unnatural intuition, Deka prays for red blood so she can finally feel like she belongs.

But on the day of the ceremony, her blood runs gold, the color of impurity–and Deka knows she will face a consequence worse than death.

Then a mysterious woman comes to her with a choice: stay in the village and submit to her fate, or leave to fight for the emperor in an army of girls just like her. They are called alaki–near-immortals with rare gifts. And they are the only ones who can stop the empire’s greatest threat.

Knowing the dangers that lie ahead yet yearning for acceptance, Deka decides to leave the only life she’s ever known. But as she journeys to the capital to train for the biggest battle of her life, she will discover that the great walled city holds many surprises. Nothing and no one are quite what they seem to be–not even Deka herself.

Thoughts

Ehh. I mean, it wasn’t bad. But it just never really sucked me in. I read the story with a bit of detachment the whole way. The ending picked it up a bit, but I probably won’t continue the series. Honestly it doesn’t feel like I need to. The end had a few interesting revelations, but ultimately it didn’t finish on a concrete “WHAT NOW” kind of moment. It didn’t keep me hooked and desperate for the next one.

Continue reading “Review: The Gilded Ones by Namina Forna”
Posted in Reviews

Review: World of Warcraft: Death Knight by Dan Jolley and Roccio Zucchi

World of Warcraft: Death Knight: Blizzard Legends by Dan Jolley

Verdict: an ok read, but doesn’t do much of a deep dive and only follows Thassarian through a series of vignette moments in his journey as a death knight. the art was sometimes difficult to understand

Summary

Blizzard presents an original manga set in the World of Warcraft Universe, studying one of the newest classes in the game–the Death Knight. This story follows the tale of Thassarian, a farm boy who joins Arthas’s army and is turned into a remorseless dealer of death — until one order goes too far.

Thoughts

While this was interesting to read, if I didn’t already know the lore and story somewhat, I would have been totally lost. This moves really quickly, doesn’t explain things in great detail, and gives just the straight facts of a situation. If you’re looking to learn the origins of Death Knights, this is more of a supplement than a thorough study, as it focuses primarily on Thassarian’s journey alone. It reads like a collection of memories, each one just touching on the situation enough to see what’s happening, then moving on to the next.

Continue reading “Review: World of Warcraft: Death Knight by Dan Jolley and Roccio Zucchi”
Posted in Book Talk, Chatty

Why I’m reading Eragon… yet again!

Hey y’all! For all my fellow mood readers, I’ve had a very relatable moment recently. I was restless one morning and despite having several books in progress, decided I wanted something new (because of course). I decided I wanted something very specific:

  • a grand adventure
  • definitely some kind of magic
  • probably elves too or some other magical creatures
  • not super dark, but not fluffy, either
  • a fast-paced read rather than a slow-burn thinker

Honestly, I kept thinking “something like Lord of the Rings, but not Lord of the Rings.” After drilling through a lot of recommendations on Storygraph, I found my perfect book for the moment, which was actually a re-read!

And so I’m now a little over halfway through Eragon by Christopher Paolini, and I was correct in choosing it because it is perfectly scratching the itch I had. I had also been wanting to re-read this book (and series) recently because To Sleep In a Sea Of Stars last summer got me all fired up and wanting to read more from Paolini. Saphira is keeping me company as a star of her own kind. ^.^

Since I’ve already read this book several times before, mostly when I was in school still, it also has the benefit of being comfortable and familiar. Do you ever feel struck with the desire to re-read a book you’re already familiar with?

PS – If you’re also a fan of Eragon, check out these covers for it from all around the world. Some of them are really awesome!

Posted in Reviews

ARC Review: The Infinity Courts by Akemi Dawn Bowman

The Infinity Courts by Akemi Dawn Bowman

Recommended: eh, I guess
Cool concept, weak execution. Probably come for the series / idea more than the characters or plot or world-building or moral questions….
Expected Release: April 6, 2021

Summary

Eighteen-year-old Nami Miyamoto is certain her life is just beginning. She has a great family, just graduated high school, and is on her way to a party where her entire class is waiting for her—including, most importantly, the boy she’s been in love with for years. The only problem? She’s murdered before she gets there. When Nami wakes up, she learns she’s in a place called Infinity, where human consciousness goes when physical bodies die. She quickly discovers that Ophelia, a virtual assistant widely used by humans on Earth, has taken over the afterlife and is now posing as a queen, forcing humans into servitude the way she’d been forced to serve in the real world. Even worse, Ophelia is inching closer and closer to accomplishing her grand plans of eradicating human existence once and for all. As Nami works with a team of rebels to bring down Ophelia and save the humans under her imprisonment, she is forced to reckon with her past, her future, and what it is that truly makes us human.

Thoughts:

What I liked about this book is probably what everyone who reads this is drawn to: the interesting premise of a human-designed AI taking over the human afterlife. WHAT. AN AMAZING. IDEA. And probably a new fear for a lot of people. This premise is so unique and cool that I can see a lot of similar content sprouting up after people get wind of this idea. And I liked the end, and that may be it’s saving grace to keep me reading this series. I’ll probably give it a second chance to improve.

Continue reading “ARC Review: The Infinity Courts by Akemi Dawn Bowman”
Posted in Book Talk, Chatty

How it’s going

I’m in the middle of an ARC that I was pretty excited about, but for some reason it’s just not really grabbing me. I’ve been kind of underwhelmed by the writing, the plot, and the characters, as well as what I suspect will be the romance. I’m almost halfway and I’m still feeling like I don’t really need to finish the book. I will, and it’s not terrible, but it’s always a little disappointing when one that you were excited to get is kind of… meh. Maybe I’ll be proven wrong as it continues, and the ending will sparkle! That’s all I can hope for in the end. 🙂

Posted in Book Talk

In progress with THE UNSPOKEN NAME

The Unspoken Name by A.K. Larkwood

Progress: page 313/464 (67%)

Why did I start reading it?

I saw this at some point, I think maybe just when browsing through library books available soon, and the cover stopped me in my tracks. The name took it from there. And the blurb sealed the deal. I’m super into the magic-and-necromancy stories, and if this was any time around October then make it doubly so. It’s been on my radar for a while now and I finally grabbed a copy for this month. This book is so much. By 30% of the way through, I felt like I had read as much story as would be in some other entire books, and I was only a third of the way through! I didn’t fully expect an epic, but that’s what it is, and I’m not mad.

Words I’ve Learned

Lines that linger

He must have swabbed up old age, like a sponge, by touching too many old books.

Women of a certain age loved Sethennai, even when they were giant snakes or evil rocks.

The secret of greatness is to know when you should risk the wrath of god.

Posted in Fast-Forward Friday

Fast Forward Friday: The Jade Bones, 2/16

Hey y’all! In contrast to Throwback Thursday, I like to use Fridays to look forward to an upcoming release that I’m excited about! Today’s is The Jade Bones by Lani Forbes. I was lucky enough to receive an ARC of the first copy, which means I’ve been waiting extra long for this book. Also, Y’ALL! I posted a Fast Forward Friday actually on Friday!!! This might be the first time all year. 🎉
Expected Release: February 16, 2021

Why wait on this one?

  • Well, like I said: I’ve been waiting on this sequel for what feels like a super long time now! So I’m excited to just continue the story! I’m not 100% sure if this is the final book or not, but I sort of hope it is so I can enjoy the conclusion. ☺
  • Most of the first book was decent, but didn’t blow me away with originality. And then we got to the last few chapters. And man, where that book ended was where I wanted to be. I am SO excited to explore this new portion of the world and story!!!
  • I love Mayan / central American fantasy. I feel like there’s so little of it, which is bizarre considering how rich the history is and the lush beautiful environments they can be set in. Everyone else is a fool, and Lani Forbes knows how to get things done.

Summary (note: THIS IS A SEQUEL!)

Cast into the underworld after an act of shattering betrayal, Mayana and Ahkin must overcome unimaginable odds if they are to return home and reclaim the throne of the Chicome. A river of blood and demons disguised as children are only two of the challenges standing in their way. Fortunately, they are not unequipped. Mayana’s royal blood controls the power of water, and Prince Ahkin wields the power of the sun itself. Ometeotl, the Mother goddess, provides them with other gifts—and an ominous warning that one of them may not survive. But can the goddess be trusted?

Back in the lands above, Mayana’s best friend, Yemania, has survived the empress selection ritual—but her next challenge may be more than she can bear. The new empress of the Chicome Empire demands she become High Healer. Yemania has no interest in serving in the palace; she wants to use her healing ability to help the common people. More than that, her heart is no longer her own. She has met an enchanting stranger—Ochix, one of the feared Miquitz people who are ancient enemies of the Chicome.

As Mayana and Ahkin move ever closer to confronting the lords of the dead, Yemania and Ochix must hide their forbidden romance or face the wrath of both their empires. Meanwhile, the new empress has made a dangerous alliance that might destroy everything they hold dear.

Posted in Book Talk, Chatty

Top 5 books with House in the title!

Hey y’all! I’ve gone and done another list of top 5 books, this time with the word house in the title. I was lounging around in bed this morning thinking about the trends in book titles lately, and house kept popping up as one I remembered seeing a lot of. So I decided to see where it takes us!

To get the below list of books, I went to Goodreads and found the 5 most popular books with the word house in their titles. So take a look and let me know what ones you think deserve to be in this list!

5. Ninth House by Leigh Bardugo

Top 5 genre tags for this title:
Fantasy, Fiction, Mystery, Adult, Paranormal

2 Sentence Summary:
A girl with no future is suddenly offered a full-ride to Yale after surviving a horrific multiple homicide. The catch is that she has to infiltrate the inner echelons of the elite and see what kind of shady shit they’re up to.

Have I heard of / read this before?
Oh yes, I’ve heard of this. xD

Do I like the cover?
I do! Shades of black and gray can be very effective, plus I love snakes.

Will I read it?
Eh, maybe eventually. I’m not really feeling the whole “elite of the school” vibe, but I’m totally in for demon summoning or devil bargains or whatever the hell it turns out they’re into. I might read this in a year or two, particularly once the hype has died down even more. Just won a Goodreads choice category, but that doesn’t always work out for me…

Continue reading “Top 5 books with House in the title!”