The Brighter The Light, The Deeper The Shadow — Nevernight by Jay Kristoff {Book Review}

Nevernight by Jay KristoffTitle: Nevernight (The Nevernight Chronicle #1)
Author: Jay Kristoff
Publisher: Thomas Dunne Books
Release Date:  August 9th, 2016
Standalone/Series: Series
Genre: Adult – Fantasy

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My rating in stars: 5 stars
My rating in words: New all-time favorite

What it’s about:

The first in a new fantasy series from the New York Times bestselling author.

In a land where three suns almost never set, a fledgling killer joins a school of assassins, seeking vengeance against the powers who destroyed her family.

Daughter of an executed traitor, Mia Corvere is barely able to escape her father’s failed rebellion with her life. Alone and friendless, she hides in a city built from the bones of a dead god, hunted by the Senate and her father’s former comrades. But her gift for speaking with the shadows leads her to the door of a retired killer, and a future she never imagined.

Now, Mia is apprenticed to the deadliest flock of assassins in the entire Republic—the Red Church. If she bests her fellow students in contests of steel, poison and the subtle arts, she’ll be inducted among the Blades of the Lady of Blessed Murder, and one step closer to the vengeance she desires. But a killer is loose within the Church’s halls, the bloody secrets of Mia’s past return to haunt her, and a plot to bring down the entire congregation is unfolding in the shadows she so loves.

Will she even survive to initiation, let alone have her revenge?

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The Adventure of a Lifetime – A Darker Shade of Magic by V.E. Schwab {Book Review}

A Darker Shade of Magic by V.E. SchwabTitle: A Darker Shade of Magic (Shades of Magic #1)
Author: V.E. Schwab
Publisher: Tor Books
Release Date:  February 24th, 2015
Standalone/Series: First book in the Shades of Magic trilogy
Genre: Adult – Fantasy

Goodreads link

My rating in stars: 4,5 stars
My rating in words: LOVED this book!

What it’s about:

Kell is one of the last Antari, a rare magician who can travel between parallel worlds: hopping from Grey London — dirty, boring, lacking magic, and ruled by mad King George — to Red London — where life and magic are revered, and the Maresh Dynasty presides over a flourishing empire — to White London — ruled by whoever has murdered their way to the throne, where people fight to control magic, and the magic fights back — and back, but never Black London, because traveling to Black London is forbidden and no one speaks of it now.

Officially, Kell is the personal ambassador and adopted Prince of Red London, carrying the monthly correspondences between the royals of each London. Unofficially, Kell smuggles for those willing to pay for even a glimpse of a world they’ll never see, and it is this dangerous hobby that sets him up for accidental treason. Fleeing into Grey London, Kell runs afoul of Delilah Bard, a cut-purse with lofty aspirations. She robs him, saves him from a dangerous enemy, then forces him to take her with him for her proper adventure.

But perilous magic is afoot, and treachery lurks at every turn. To save both his London and the others, Kell and Lila will first need to stay alive — a feat trickier than they hoped.

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Sing Me A Song Of A Lass That Is Gone – Outlander by Diana Gabaldon {Book Review}

Outlander by Diana GabaldonTitle: Outlander (Outlander #1)
Author: Diana Gabaldon
Publisher: Dell Publishing Company
Release Date:  June 1st, 1991
Standalone/Series: Book one in the Outlander series
Genre: Adult – Fantasy – Historical – Romance

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My rating in stars: 4 stars
My rating in words: Really liked this book

What it’s about:

The year is 1945. Claire Randall, a former combat nurse, is just back from the war and reunited with her husband on a second honeymoon when she walks through a standing stone in one of the ancient circles that dot the British Isles. Suddenly she is a Sassenach—an “outlander”—in a Scotland torn by war and raiding border clans in the year of Our Lord…1743.

Hurled back in time by forces she cannot understand, Claire is catapulted into the intrigues of lairds and spies that may threaten her life, and shatter her heart. For here James Fraser, a gallant young Scots warrior, shows her a love so absolute that Claire becomes a woman torn between fidelity and desire—and between two vastly different men in two irreconcilable lives.

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Book Review: Uprooted by Naomi Novik

Uprooted by Naomi NovikTitle: Uprooted
Author: Naomi Novik
Publisher: Del Rey
Release Date: May 19th, 2015
Standalone/Series: Standalone
Genre: Fantasy

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My rating in stars: 4 stars
My rating in words: Really liked this book

What it’s about:

“Our Dragon doesn’t eat the girls he takes, no matter what stories they tell outside our valley. We hear them sometimes, from travelers passing through. They talk as though we were doing human sacrifice, and he were a real dragon. Of course that’s not true: he may be a wizard and immortal, but he’s still a man, and our fathers would band together and kill him if he wanted to eat one of us every ten years. He protects us against the Wood, and we’re grateful, but not that grateful.”

Agnieszka loves her valley home, her quiet village, the forests and the bright shining river. But the corrupted Wood stands on the border, full of malevolent power, and its shadow lies over her life.

Her people rely on the cold, driven wizard known only as the Dragon to keep its powers at bay. But he demands a terrible price for his help: one young woman handed over to serve him for ten years, a fate almost as terrible as falling to the Wood.

The next choosing is fast approaching, and Agnieszka is afraid. She knows—everyone knows—that the Dragon will take Kasia: beautiful, graceful, brave Kasia, all the things Agnieszka isn’t, and her dearest friend in the world. And there is no way to save her.

But Agnieszka fears the wrong things. For when the Dragon comes, it is not Kasia he will choose.

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Book (and Movie) Review: The Martian by Andy Weir

The Martian by Andy WeirTitle: The Martian
Author: Andy Weir
Publisher: Crown
Release Date: February 11th, 2014 (first published 2011)
Standalone/Series: Standalone
Genre: Science Fiction – Adult

Goodreads link

My rating in stars: 4 stars
My rating in words: Really liked this book

 

What it’s about:

Six days ago, astronaut Mark Watney became one of the first people to walk on Mars. Now, he’s sure he’ll be the first person to die there.

After a dust storm nearly kills him and forces his crew to evacuate the planet while thinking him dead, Mark finds himself stranded on Mars’ surface, completely alone, with no way to signal Earth that he’s alive — and even if he could get word out, his supplies would be gone years before a rescue could arrive.

Chances are, though, he won’t have time to starve to death. The damaged machinery, unforgiving environment or plain-old “human error” are much more likely to kill him first. But Mark’s not ready to quit. Armed with nothing but his ingenuity and his engineering skills — and a gallows sense of humor that proves to be his greatest source of strength – he embarks on a dogged quest to stay alive, using his botany expertise to grow food and even hatching a mad plan to contact NASA back on Earth.

As he overcomes one seemingly insurmountable obstacle after the next, Mark begins to let himself believe he might make it off the planet alive – but Mars has plenty of surprises in store for him yet.

Grounded in real, present-day science from the first page to the last, yet propelled by a brilliantly ingenious plot that surprises the reader again and again, The Martian is a truly remarkable thriller: an impossible-to-put-down suspense novel that manages to read like a real-life survival tale.

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Book Review: Ugly Love by Colleen Hoover

Ugly Love by Colleen HooverTitle: Ugly Love
Author: Colleen Hoover
Publisher: Atria Books
Release Date: August 5th, 2014
Standalone/Series: Standalone
Genre: Romance – Contemporary – Adult

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My rating in stars: 3,5 stars
My rating in words: I liked it

 

What it’s about:

When Tate Collins meets airline pilot Miles Archer, she knows it isn’t love at first sight. They wouldn’t even go so far as to consider themselves friends. The only thing Tate and Miles have in common is an undeniable mutual attraction. Once their desires are out in the open, they realize they have the perfect set-up. He doesn’t want love, she doesn’t have time for love, so that just leaves the sex. Their arrangement could be surprisingly seamless, as long as Tate can stick to the only two rules Miles has for her.

Never ask about the past.
Don’t expect a future.

They think they can handle it, but realize almost immediately they can’t handle it at all.

Hearts get infiltrated.
Promises get broken.
Rules get shattered.
Love gets ugly.

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Book Review: The Final Empire (Mistborn #1) by Brandon Sanderson

The Final Empire by Brandon SandersonTitle: The Final Empire (Mistborn #1)
Author: Brandon Sanderson
Publisher: Gollancz
Release Date: October 1st, 2009
Standalone/Series: First book in the Mistborn trilogy.
Genre: Fantasy – Adult

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My rating in stars: 4,5 stars
My rating in words: Loved this book

 

What it’s about:

What if the prophesied hero had failed to defeat the Dark Lord?

For a thousand years the ash fell. For a thousand years, the Skaa slaved in misery and lived in fear. For a thousand years, the Lord Ruler reigned with absolute power and ultimate terror, divinely invincible. Every attempted revolt has failed miserably.

Yet somehow hope survives. A new kind of uprising is being planned, one that depends on the cunning of a brilliant criminal mastermind and the courage of an unlikely heroine, a Skaa street urchin, who must learn to master Allomancy, the power of a mistborn.

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Book Review: Kings Rising by C.S. Pacat

Kings Rising by C.S. PacatTitle: Kings Rising (Captive Prince #3)
Author: C.S. Pacat
Publisher: Berkley Books
Release Date: February 2nd 2016
Standalone/Series: Third book in the Captive Prince series
Genre: Fantasy – Romance – Adult

Goodreads link

My rating in stars: 5 stars
My rating in words: New all-time favorite!

 

What it’s about:

The epic conclusion to the internationally acclaimed Captive Prince trilogy.

Damianos of Akielos has returned.

His identity now revealed, Damen must face his master Prince Laurent as Damianos of Akielos, the man Laurent has sworn to kill.

On the brink of a momentous battle, the future of both their countries hangs in the balance. In the south, Kastor’s forces are massing. In the north, the Regent’s armies are mobilising for war. Damen’s only hope of reclaiming his throne is to fight together with Laurent against their usurpers.

Forced into an uneasy alliance the two princes journey deep into Akielos, where they face their most dangerous opposition yet. But even if the fragile trust they have built survives the revelation of Damen’s identity – can it stand against the Regent’s final, deadly play for the throne?

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Book Review: Prince’s Gambit by C.S. Pacat

Prince's Gambit by C.S. PacatTitle: Prince’s Gambit (Captive Prince #2)
Author: C.S. Pacat
Publisher: Berkley Books
Release Date: July 7th 2015
Standalone/Series: Second book in the Captive Prince series
Genre: Fantasy – Romance – Adult

Goodreads link

My rating in stars: 5 stars
My rating in words: New all-time favorite!

 

What it’s about:

The second novel in the critically acclaimed trilogy from global phenomenon C. S. Pacat…

With their countries on the brink of war, Damen and his new master, Prince Laurent, must exchange the intrigues of the palace for the sweeping might of the battlefield as they travel to the border to avert a lethal plot.

Forced to hide his identity, Damen finds himself increasingly drawn to the dangerous, charismatic Laurent. But as the fledgling trust between the two men deepens, the truth of secrets from both their pasts is poised to deal them the crowning death blow…

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Book Review: Captive Prince by C.S. Pacat

Captive PrinceTitle: Captive Prince (Captive Prince #1)
Author: C.S. Pacat
Publisher: Penguin
Release Date: May 22nd 2012
Standalone/Series: First book in the Captive Prince series
Genre: Fantasy – Romance – Adult

Goodreads link

My rating in stars: 4,5 stars
My rating in words: Love this book

 

What it’s about:

“This was Vere, voluptuous and decadent, country of honeyed poison”

Damen is a warrior hero to his people, and the truthful heir to the throne of Akielos, but when his half brother seizes power, Damen is captured, stripped of his identity and sent to serve the prince of an enemy nation as a pleasure slave.

Beautiful, manipulative and deadly, his new master Prince Laurent epitomizes the worst of the court at Vere. But in the lethal political web of the Veretian court, nothing is as it seems, and when Damen finds himself caught up in a play for the throne, he must work together with Laurent to survive and save his country.

For Damen, there is just one rule: never, ever reveal his true identity. Because the one man Damen needs is the one man who has more reason to hate him than anyone else…

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