4.19.2019

Rosemarked by Livia Blackburne {Book Review}

{Many thanks to the publisher for sending me an eARC of Rosemarked free of charge. If you click through the affiliate links in this post, any purchase you make supports this site.}


Rosemarked (Rosemarked #1)Rosemarked by Livia Blackburne
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

I love a plague novel, I just do. Rosemarked has all the makings of a great iteration of the genre, but fell short for me.

The beginning held great promise, with our protagonist enduring excruciating pain and evidencing immense bravery to become a Healer. But she never gets to push herself that far again. Instead, the middle of the story becomes predictable, with a pattern that repeats over and over (not further described to avoid spoilers) to the point where I just wanted to skim ahead.

I may pick up the second novel in this series because it did hold such promise and I want to hear the end of Dineas and Zivah's stories.

View all my reviews

12.09.2018

Fireblood by Elly Blake {Book Review}

Review of Fireblood: I really wanted to love Fireblood as much as I loved Frostblood, but no such luck.

{Many thanks to the publisher for sending me an eARC of Fireblood free of charge. If you click through the affiliate links in this post, any purchase you make supports this site.}

I really wanted to love Fireblood as much as I loved Frostblood, but no such luck.

Frostblood was the first book in the The Fireblood Saga by Elly Blake and held such promise! The series tells the story of Frostbloods and Firebloods, warring people who wield magical frost or fire. The feud goes back as far as anyone can remember and the only potential ending appears to be the annihilation of one or the other.

In this second novel, Fireblood, the story picks up where Frostblood left off, but this time the focus is on the nations of Tempesia (the Frostbloods home) and Sudesia (the Firebloods home). I don't want to spoil anything from Frostblood, but I'll say that when our heroine heads to the Fireblood homeland, she is greeted much differently than she anticipated.

I found myself wanting to put the novel down for about the first half because it moved sooooo slowly, but I'm glad I stuck with it. The second half really delivered, moved the story forward, and made me anxious for book three.

12.04.2018

The Adventurer's Guild by Zack Loren Clark and Nick Eliopulos {Book Review}

In The Adventurer's Guild, we meet the inhabitants of an isolated village with a strict Guild system. The book opens with the big sorting event, where young men and women are assigned to guilds, even against their own wishes. The titular guild is shrouded in mystery and charged with defending the town from outside dangers.

{Many thanks to the publisher for sending me an eARC of The Adventurer's Guild free of charge. If you click through the affiliate links in this post, any purchase you make supports this site.}

Plan to Happy Rating:



Review:

The Adventurer's Guild is exactly the type of middle grade novel I love - you can't tell at all that it's a middle grade novel. There's no speaking down to the reader or avoiding sensitive topics because the readers are 8 - 12.

In The Adventurer's Guild, we meet the inhabitants of an isolated village with a strict Guild system. The book opens with the big sorting event, where young men and women are assigned to guilds, even against their own wishes. The titular guild is shrouded in mystery and charged with defending the town from outside dangers.

I can't wait to hand this novel over to my daughter. I have no doubt that she will love the excitement, magic, and plot twists just as much as I did.

11.06.2018

Select by Marit Weisenberg

{Many thanks to the publisher for sending me an eARC of Select free of charge. If you click through the affiliate links in this post, any purchase you make supports this site.}

Plan to Happy Rating:


Plan to Happy Review:

Select by Marit Weisenberg is a solid addition to the world of YA Sci Fi. In this first installment of the series, we meet Julia Jaynes, an unbelievably wealthy young woman who has been pushed out by her family and left to find her own way.

Throw in quite a few supernatural powers from Julia and you have quite a mystery forming in the first few chapters. Who is Julia's family? Where are they from and where are they escaping to? What is the source of their differences from all the rest of us? Why has she been ousted from her group?

It takes awhile to get there, and maybe the reveal isn't as exciting as I hoped, but the ride was a fun one. I'll definitely be picking up the second novel in this series to see what happens next.

11.04.2018

Nyxia by Scott Reintgen {Book Review}

{Many thanks to the publisher for sending me an eARC of Nyxia free of charge. If you click through the affiliate links in this post, any purchase you make supports this site.}

Plan to Happy Rating:


Plan to Happy Review:

Nyxia by Scott Reintgen is a YA Sci-Fi Thriller comprised of nonstop action from front to back. Ten kids, down on their luck and looking for a way to help their families, are thrown together on a spaceship by the mysterious Babel Corporation in a competition for vast wealth.

I loved so much of this novel - the premise, the setting, the diverse cast of characters, and even the somewhat generic evil corporation. What I did not love was the treacle. I can handle a cheesy line here and there, but this novel was chock full of them. 

When I find myself rolling my eyes, I can't but be jolted out of the story. I have to admit to being interested in reading the next novel because I am dying to know what happens next, but I'll just be better prepared this time for the sentimentality.

10.27.2018

The Salt Line by Holly Goddard Jones {Book Review}

Hey fans of post-apocalyptic fiction, this one's for you! I am constantly amazed by the ability of authors to think of new ways that the world will end and Holly Goddard Jones' The Salt Line is no exception.
{Many thanks to the publisher for sending me an eARC of The Salt Line free of charge. If you click through the affiliate links in this post, any purchase you make supports this site.}

PTH Rating:


Review:

Hey fans of post-apocalyptic fiction, this one's for you! I am constantly amazed by the ability of authors to think of new ways that the world will end and Holly Goddard Jones' The Salt Line is no exception. 

This time, humans have organized themselves into zones that are surrounded by vast areas of desolation (a "salt line"). This new societal structure was necessitated by a tick that burrows into your skin and ... well, let's leave that one to the description in the book.

As usual, I wanted to know more about the breakdown that forced everyone into the zones. This novel mostly takes place outside the zones and amounts to a hybrid of a thriller and a sci-fi novel. There were enough plot twists to keep me turning the pages, but there were some slow parts that felt like a slog.

The characters in The Salt Line aren't wholly good or wholly bad, which makes it an interesting read and renders its characters very realistic. They certainly didn't always make the same choices I would have, but I don't live in a world with killer ticks!

10.07.2018

Sourdough by Robin Sloane

Gosh darn it, I love a quirky book. Sourdough by Robin Sloan is just that. The San Francisco references abound, I could almost taste the bread, and I feel like I want to take up baking again. In sum, I loved this book.
{Many thanks to the publisher for sending me an eARC of Sourdough free of charge. If you click through the affiliate links in this post, any purchase you make supports this site.}

Gosh darn it, I love a quirky book. Sourdough by Robin Sloan is just that. The San Francisco references abound, I could almost taste the bread, and I feel like I want to take up baking again. In sum, I loved this book.

Sourdough tells the story of a young tech worker, Lois Clary, who is gifted with the starter for her favorite restaurant's sourdough bread. From there, things just get crazy.

Lois is a lovable character, riddled with self-doubt and looking for a path forward. While the story has an undercurrent of sadness, it is also filled with wonder and hope. I never knew what would happen next, but I was just happy to be along for the ride.