The Diviners Book Review

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Book: The Diviners

Author: Libba Bray

Genre: YA Historical Fiction/Paranormal, Mystery

Rating: ★★★★★

Goodreads Blurb

“People think boundaries and borders build nations. Nonsense-words do. Beliefs, declarations, constitutions-words. Stories. Myths. Lies. Promises. History”

There are books that you know everything about due to the hype surrounding it and the plethora of spoilers going around social media.  This wasn’t the case for this books.  Sure, I’d seen it around bookstagram, I agreed that it was beautiful to look at, but I knew NOTHING about the plot before picking it up.  Going into this with my eyes closed worked out for the best this time.

The Diviners is a BIG book with and equally BIG story.  We start off with Evie O’Neill, who is always chasing trouble’s tail, being shipped off to New York to live with her uncle Will after a “prank” gone wrong.  It’s 1926 and New York is where the party is at.  Evie is beyond ecstatic for the change of scenery, a place where she can finally belong.  Uncle Will is master of all things occult, owning a creepy museum and teaching courses on  everything there is to know about the supernatural.  When bodies start popping up, desecrated and missing body parts, Will becomes the man of the hour and Evie is not far behind.  Together, they’ll try to uncover the mystery of The Pentacle Killer and hopefully, live to tell the tale.

Let’s get one thing clear, I LOVE NEW YORK. I love the city, I love the ambiance, I love the craziness of it.  It’s a place where everything seems possible, like every corner is harboring it’s own adventurous opportunity.  But it’s also scary and mysterious and broad.  This book captured that. Beautifully.  People underestimate the power of a good setting.  Giving life to the buildings, the streets, the very wind that surrounds your characters can give a whole new edge to your story.  A different time period? Madness. Genius.  A busy city, right in it’s prime; it’s not hard imagining all the crazy events that happen throughout the story.

This is one of the few books that I stayed for the atmosphere, instead of the plot.  Not that the plot was lacking; it’s just as fantastic.  But the wow factor was definitely the richness of city.  In addition to this, we have the dialogue which was fluid and fun s heck.  There’s so much slang from the ‘2os, giving it that classic movie quality you expect from the era.

The plot itself is like one of those Russian dolls.  It’s a plot within a plot, within a plot… Though there is a lot to take in, the author doesn’t try to rush the action.  Everything is at low simmer; the drama, the romance. Hopefully it’ll pick up a bit more in the sequel, Lair of Dreams because I sill have A LOT of questions.

One of the things I loved most about this book is the amount of characters presented.  Each one has a secret and a different life story but in odd ways, they’re all connected.  The chapters change point of view constantly to accommodate all of the protagonists, keeping the reader on the edge of their seat to see what will happen next.  This strategy runs the risk of getting annoying because sometimes you want to read a specific POV more than the other.  Even so, I enjoyed it a lot more in this book because I loved all of the characters.  Even the villain, who was scary beyond belief, had fantastic chapters.  The only con was that with the constant switching, the story kind of dragged on.  But I appreciated the slow place.

With Evie, the first think that came to mind was spunk.  This girl is as feisty as they come; she’s definitely the life of the party.  She’s vain, she’s petty, she’s a bit too adventurous and I loved it! There’s nothing I hate more than a bland character and Evie was so full of life, so real and girly that I couldn’t help but love her whirlwind personality.

Then we have uncle Will himself, all scholarly but at the same time mysterious and anxious (and handsome I’m not gonna lie), a total contrast to Evie.  His role as parental figure is lacking but he’s key to the plot. At his side we have Jericho, giant, silent and beautiful Jericho.  Now he was a surprise.  He doesn’t talk much during the book but when he does, he makes an impact.  He makes you laugh, swoon and maybe coo at his dorkiness.  He’s my personal favorite to be honest.

In addition to those three we have Sam a rake and a thief; Theta, superstar and runaway;   Memphis, a poet with street smarts; Mabel, a quiet girl with rebellion running through her veins.

I believe that in the next book these last 4 characters will develop more and take up the spotlight and I am oh so ready for it.  I honestly don’t know what more to expect, how this will go on…

But what I do know is that it’ll be epic.

Camila

 

The Raven Boys Book Review

 

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Book: The Raven Boys

Author: Maggie Stiefvater

Genre: YA Fantasy/Paranormal

Rating: ★★★★★

Goodreads Blurb

“Aglionby Academy was the number one reason Blue had developed her two rules: One, stay away from boys because they were trouble. And two, stay away from Aglionby boys, because they were bastards.”

I know a book is great when my chest starts to feel real tight every time I read a chapter or think about a certain character involved in the book.  I know it’s fantastic when I’m twenty pages in and I’m already swooning over the protagonists.  I know a book is perfect when the main character is real and I feel a connection to her/his/their story.

The Raven Boys is an amazing read that I just fell hard for.  It’s everything I’ve ever wanted in a book, no joke.

I didn’t take me long to be completely enraptured by Maggie’s writing; she’s one of the best I tell you.  I knew that already because I’d read Shiver not too long ago but this book… The Raven Boys is Maggie’s beautiful narrative style on steroids.  You can tell how much Maggie put into this gang.

The story revolves around a sixteen year old girl named Blue Sargent and the Aglionby boys: the elite of the small town that is Henrietta.  Blue has had a very peculiar upbringing, what with her family consisting of psychics and everything paranormal and has been told all her life that she’s destined to cause her true love’s death.

Nice.

The book is written in third person point of view but each chapter revolves around different characters; mainly Gansey, Blue and Adam.  This gives the story a well-rounded view without spoiling any of the events for the reader.

Blue is my main chick. I want to be her friend.  Though she isn’t as fierce as other main heroines (whom I also adore), there is this softness about her that makes me adore her even more. And not in the wilted flower type of way but the ultimate caring mother figure kind of way. If that makes sense.  She fits in with these boys and it’s solely because of who she is and how she sees the world.  She’s very perceptive and lovely and goes the extra mile to understand these boys.  She respects their personalities, even makes fun of them sometimes and best of all, she’s a friend.

One of the things I related to the most in this book was Blue’s day to day life.   Her house is one filled with women who are quirky a best, maniacal at worst.  It reminds me of my childhood  since my home was and is still dominated by women.  Maura, Blue’s mom, is such a refreshing parental figure without being unbelievable. Her character just brought out so many memories of my own mother, it was surreal.  I’m so glad that Maggie took the time to elaborate on this aspect of the Blue’s life since in YA, the norm is to keep parents as vague as possible and/or only exist as plot devices.

Aside from Maura, we have characters like Persephone and Calla, Maura’s two best friends, who also contribute to the story’s richness without stealing the limelight.  Maggie is a genius when it comes to secondary characters.  Persephone gives such a Luna Lovegood feel without being a replica and Calla is just straight out bad ass.  I love that I get to love them this much.

To love everybody this much, especially the boys.

I’m a sucker for guys in books, it’s a given.  The Aglionby boys are no exception.  Maggie’s way of building up these boys is why I couldn’t pick a favorite.  Instead of writing about the strictly physical aspects of each boy, she takes the time to give us small details that are exclusive to them.  You get to know their essence as a person.  I cannot for the life of me tell you the color of Adam’s eyes, but I can feel who he is.  It’s the oddest thing.

What’s so great about this is that there is no way of confusing the boys.  There is no mix-up on who is whom, there can’t be.  The way they talk, smile, love and hate is so different from the other.  And you will love them individually, with all their faults and quirks.  Unconditionally.  Believe me.

The atmosphere in this book is nothing less than alive.  Without it, nothing could have happened in the story, the setting and tone are exceptionally executed throughout all the scenes.  You will feel joy when you’re supposed to feel joy and you will freak the fuck out when you’re supposed to freak the fuck out.  The plot twists grab you by the throat and refuse to let go until you’ve finished the book.  AND EVEN THEN.  THE FUCKING CLIFFHANGER. MY GOD.  KILL ME.

The mystery and the suspense will remain alive even after the last word.

So if you’re still having doubts about finally picking up this series. Don’t.  I’m so ready to keep going with this story and loving every single word of it.  My heart might not be ready but since when do I ever listen to my heart? Especially when it comes to book?

Camila

 

Air Awakens by Elise Kova Review

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Book: Air Awakens

Author: Elise Kova

Genre: YA Fantasy

Rating: ALL OF THE STARS

Goodreads Blurb

The world was alive around her, and each gust of air was like the whisper of a lover upon silk.


Let’s do this!

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Air Awakens… Where to start…

This follows the life of Vhalla Yarl, a seventeen-year-old library apprentice who has been taught to fear the Tower of Sorcerers and all of those who belonged in it, and she’d been happy to oblige and keep to the quiet of her books. But when she unknowingly saves the life of Crown Prince Aldrik Solaris, which is to say, one of the most powerful sorcerers of all, her life takes a drastic turn, and she’s forced to decide to embrace her true nature and leave all that she’s ever known, or ignoring this newfound part of herself, as she discovers that she herself has a power of her own; the rare elemental magic of a Windwalker.

This book was great. So, so, so great.


The World and the Magic Within Its Pages:

I love the way this world and the magic in it has been built. How, while having its own unique complexity like most Fantasy books, it keeps a certain type of simplicity that allows readers to take it all in and grasp every concept quickly, creating a bond between the reader, the book and the author from a very early stage in the reading experience with this book, and thus allowing this bond to get stronger and stronger as the pages turn, as well as facilitating the establishment of a stronger connection to the characters.

The world in this book works in the way of a compass. It is divided by four regions, North, South, East and West, and each region means a specific affinity for every sorcerer. The people of the North tend to have an affinity with Earth, the people of the South tend have an affinity with Water, those of the West generally have an affinity with Fire, and finally, those of the East, like Vhalla, tend to have an affinity with Air.

That means that Waterruners are most likely to be Southerners, Firebearers are almost always Westerners, Northerners tend to be Groundbreakers and Easterners tend to be Windwalkers.

Learning about this world was a pleasant experience; I learned along with Vhalla and Aldrik was as much my teacher as he was Vhalla’s.


Vhalla Yarl:

Vhalla Yarl is a very human character.

Here’s why:

You see, when presented with the fact that she had this amazing, unique ability and the chance to learn more about it, to nurture it, and to train to become a skilled Windwalker, Vhalla… Refused. She refused and she hesitated again and again, and she wouldn’t accept not being given a choice. And this, I feel, is a very human characteristic.

We, humans, don’t like being used, don’t like being controlled, and we don’t like being told that we’re wrong. We don’t like to be faced with facts that are a complete contradiction to everything we’ve known, and thus it takes us time to grasp and accept these facts, or we just don’t accept them, no matter how much truth they may hold. In addition to this, it affects us greatly when we extend our trust towards towards someone that ultimately ends up abusing of it, and losing it.

It felt completely real, Vhalla’s reluctance to trust the Tower of Sorcerers because 1) she’d been taught to fear these people, and to stay as far from sorcery as possible, thus the possibility of anything good coming out of it seemed scarce, and 2) because she extended her trust to “her Phantom,” and he didn’t value it enough to keep it the first time around.

Ultimately, Vhalla was looking out for herself. She was smart, and strong, and brave, because throughout all of it, she thought of herself. She learned to embrace herself as a sorcerer and as someone who has the power to make a difference, and she made sure that this was her choice.

This, combined with her wittiness and her undying love for reading (which I obviously found incredibly relatable), was what made me feel so connected to her character, and what made her into one of my favorite literary characters.
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Crown Prince Aldrik Solaris, an Outcast on the Spotlight:

*dreamy sigh*

How do I even form coherent thoughts about my dear, fiery,
temperamental prince?

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Yeeeeah, about that…

Prince Aldrik is misunderstood, and I’m glad we got a main character who could see that, and understand that (even if it took her, and me, a while), regardless of the perceptions of him that next to everyone had embedded into her mind.

Aldrik is what you could call… An outcast on the spotlight.

It’s hard to be a sorcerer in a world in which these are outcasts, but it’s even harder to be a sorcerer when you’re constantly on the spotlight. And even harder, you might say, when you happen to be the Crown Prince.

It’s quite an odd combination.

It was little more than the corners of his mouth curling up, but it lit his eyes in a way that Vhalla had yet to see. It made her wonder if she had ever really seen him before. It made her wonder if anyone had ever really seen him before.

That, right there, is one of my favorite quotes from this book. Just like Vhalla, I admit I failed to understand Aldrik at the beginning of this book, to see him, and it was little details like these that allowed me to truly see him, and to grow fonder and fonder of him.

A little too fond, you might say. Hehee.

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At first, I thought he was a complete asshole.

Then I understood why.

Then, I learned that he cares for those of his kind and those he loves, even if it’s in his own way. I learned that he’s passionate, and feels very deeply and very strongly. I learned that he’s simply a misfit under a microscope whose reputation has already been decided without reasoning, and is constantly reminded of this shallow, false perception that follows him around, wherever he goes, inevitably.

*sigh*

The rest is history.

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Indeed.


Vhalla and Aldrik, the definition of OTP:

Look, I don’t have much to say about Vhalla and Aldrik’s relationship except, I SHIP IT.

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It was pleasantly subtle and yet almost palpable, and I love that it was comprised of little significant moments, that slowly built their relationship.


Supporting Characters That Added a Little Something More to This Story:

 Roan and Sareem:

I think… That the presence of these two characters in Vhalla’s life made it clearer for me to see how lonely the life of a sorcerer could be. They were a nice asset to the story, presenting a stark contrast between Vhalla’s past as a library apprentice, and Vhalla’s future as a sorcerer.

Sareem was kinda giving me some Gale vibes though, trying to escape the friend-zone and all. I loved him as her best friend, and he truly was sweet towards Vhalla, if a tad bit cheesy, but I’m kind of glad their relationship ended the way it did. I couldn’t take him as a love interest, and even less after his reaction to Vhalla’s sorcery.

*clears throat*

Sorry?

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Larel:

Larel holds a dear place in my heart. She was the constant that Vhalla needed in the midst of the mess that her life had become. She didn’t pressure Vhalla into making a decision, she simply presented her with facts, with the truth, and more importantly, she was there. Vhalla needed a friend and a guide, and Larel provided her with her friendship and guidance without asking for anything in return.

I genuinely feel that there is a lot more depth to her character than we get to see in this book, and I do hope I get to see more of her in the next books.

(Fritz)nangle:

Fritz is, and I’m quoting Elise on this one, “such a cinnamon roll. Too Precious. Too pure.”

Even though he didn’t appear in this book as often as I’d liked him to, he gave me so many Kenji vibes (I’m a sucker for Kenji), and I just… *struggles for words*

FRITZNANGLE MUST BE PROTECTED AT ALL COSTS, OKAY?

Prince Baldair:

Oh, Prince Baldair, why must you be so charming?

I admit I thought I would strongly dislike Baldair, since he’s such a flirt and all. I was wrong.

There’s something so disarmingly good-natured and easy-going about his character, and he’s so sweet too, how could anyone not like him?

It was as though the golden prince wore everything on his sleeves, and his cerulean eyes promised nothing but the truth.

Master Mohned:

Do you wanna know how I imagined Master Mohned?

Are you sure?

Well, you asked for it.

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*cackles*

oOPS!


The Magic of Simplicity in Writing:

I talked a little about this on my last reading update, and I mentioned it earlier on this post, but I really, really enjoyed the simplicity in the way this book was written. I enjoyed it a lot. It allowed me to quickly fly through it, and it almost made me feel as if I was being presented with some sort of reality, instead of a fragment of fiction.

I’d most definitely recommend this book to any new reader, or non-reader (or avid reader), as the way this book is written allows readers to get a full grasp of this world fairly quickly, and thus keeping you at the edge of your seat.

Props to Elise Kova for being such a fabulous writer.


Overall Thoughts:

This. Book. Was. Phenomenal.

I loved every single part of it and, quite frankly, it’s going right up on my favorites shelf. The world was flawlessly put together, the characters were rich and believable, the romance was just right, the story was so simply, and yet intricately, carefully woven, and the ending was fantastic, giving way for this series to grow into something far, far greater.

I 100% recommend that EVERYONE give this book a try aaaaand that concludes this review.

I hope you enjoyed it, and that it made you want to pick this book up.

Happy reading!

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The Rose Society by Marie Lu Review

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Book: The Rose Society

Author: Marie Lu

Genre: YA Fantasy

Rating: ALL OF THE STARS

Goodreads Blurb

“We are both drawn to stories,” he says in a soft voice, “and every scar carries one.”


 What has Marie Lu done to my soul????????

I’m dead.

FIRST OF ALL, if you haven’t The Young Elites (how many times will I have to ask you this, why on earth haven’t you read The Young Elites?), do me a favor, stop being a little piece of poop and leave this post, lest you read a spoiler and bring hell upon me wHEN I CLEARLY JUST WARNED YOU.

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I lied.

I AM NOT CALM.

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When I started this book, I was simply an innocent soul, overly excited to finally be able to continue reading one of her favorite stories, if not her favorite. Now… I’m deeply, emotionally scarred.

I have so many feelings and I don’t know how to organize them into coherent opinions.

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Let’s see… Where do I start…

WHERE WE LEFT OFF:

The Young Elites ends with Adelina being kicked out of The Dagger Society, thus causing her to have a… I guess you could call it a freak out. Violetta, her sister, finds her in the midst of this freak out, while she’s madly cutting her hair with a knife, sobbing. They have this beautiful sister moment in which they promise to protect each other, to stay together, for they are sisters, and they need to trust each other.

The Rose Society starts about three weeks later, when Adelina and Violetta are out in the island of Merroutas, searching for other Young Elites, for allies. Or one specific Young Elite. Magiano.

MAGIANO:

MY FIRST AND STRONGEST THEORY WAS TRUE. I KNEW HE’D BE THE ONE FROM THE MOMENT HE WAS MENTIONED IN THE FIRST BOOK.

Right away, when Adelina and Violetta see the gambling operator and she mentions his heavy purse and that he surely hasn’t lose in a long time, I knew it was him. How else would he win over and over again if he wasn’t cheating and/or tricking people.

We find out his power is mimicking other Elites’ powers! ISN’T IT AWESOME?! Oh, how useful he proves to be. Oh, how I love him.

He’s… God he’s perfect. He’s such a playful, mischievous, joyful soul. I’m a person who’s naturally drawn to joyful souls. Don’t get me wrong, I can appreciate a “bad boy,” but I personally prefer someone who’s filled with joy and happiness and everything related. And Magiano is exactly that. It’s like he can’t help laughing, or smiling, or joking around, or filling with delight and excitement, I love that. I love his appearance, from his slitted, cat-like, golden eyes, to his long dark braids. I love his whole demeanor and personality, and how he cares so much for Adelina and is so protective of her.

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“And … sapphire.” My voice fades into a whisper. “For the angel of Joy.”

“Joy?” Magiano smiles, gently this time.

“Yes.” I look down, overwhelmed by sudden sadness. “Because I can see so much of it in you.”

He’s truly stunning, and I cannot believe Adelina can’t see how good he is for her, constantly pushing him away, refusing to let him in. He brings calmness and brightens up her life, he’s able to lift up some of the darkness in her soul, and he’s the only person with which she’s felt her power be completely still and not missed it.

How can she be so blind?

Whenever she’d push him away, whether consciously or not, and she’d describe the disappointment in his face, where
there’s normally joy, my heart would break into a tiny million pieces. EVERY. SINGLE. TIME. And whenever he’d get close to her, being sweet and gentle and patient, and whenever he’d appear out of nowhere to protect Adelina, my heart would melt into a warm, sweet puddle. EVERY. SINGLE. TIME.content_10858134

“Something flickers in the darkness─and an instant later, Magiano appears before me, drawn out by the sight of my blood. His pupils become slits as he looks at Teren. “Keep your filthy blades off her,” he snaps. “It’s rude.”

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Just thinking about this makes me so angry. He’s pERFECT AND HE LOVES YOU AND CARES FOR YOU! HE BRINGS
LIGHT TO THE DARK, SHITTY HOLE THAT IS YOUR SOUL! HOW CAN YOU NOT SEE THAT!?

*takes deep breath*

I’M NOT FINE. I’m fine.

BACK TO THE STORY:

So, Adelina and Violetta find Magiano and ask him to join them, and he, playful as he is, decides that they will have a little competition, for he doesn’t work with the unworthy. If he wins, he won’t join them, but if THEY win, then he’ll join them. The mission is none other than stealing the humongous diamond that the king of Merroutas, the Night King, uses as a pin.

Fast forward a little bit and they have gained an audience with the king, disguised as dancers. Adelina has woven an illusion over the damaged side of her face. They are stunning. They catch the attention of the king, and when they reach him, SURPRISE, Magiano seats beside the king, pretending to be some sort of mercenary, with the intention of stealing the diamond pin first. They make eye contact. She creates the illusion of a diamond pin. He falls for it, and takes it. He gets an idea.

“This dancer is new to the city, my friend. I’ve seen her perform before. She’s very good─she is court-trained, I hear.”

Clever little mimic. Little does he know that Adelina was, IN FACT, court-trained. Trained by the greatest consort there has ever been, Raffaele himself. She dances and walks with such grace, flirts at the right moments, she’s got the king in the palm of her hand (and Magiano too *giggles*). She weaves the illusion of wine intoxication over the king, he believes himself to be drunk, he’s infatuated with Adelina. She takes the real pin.

One little slip, Adelina loses control of her powers. OOPS! Fast forward, she took her chance and killed the king, Magiano has disappeared. Mercenaries are fascinated with her, astonished, they’ve realized who she is, they pursue her. Magiano reappears and he rescues their butts.

They’ve won themselves an ally.

Fast forward, she receives a note from a mercenary. He offers them transportation to the outermost lands of Estenzia.

While on their way to meet with the mystery mercenary, Adelina has a little… Extreme insanity moment, in which her illusions start to affect her. She sees her father, she sees Enzo, burning the place to ashes, she sees herself being dragged to the underworld, and she can’t seem to realize that these are her own illusions. Violetta takes away her powers, she’s dragged back to reality.

ADELINA’S ILLUSIONS:

Throughout the whole book we see how much Adelina’s illusions are affecting her, and how, stubborn as she is, she refuses to let go of them. We have all these little episodes in which her illusions keep tearing her apart and making her suffer, or making her more ambitious, and more drawn and attached to the darkness within her, and it’s honestly quite exhausting, reading from such a dark, raw, insane, torn apart point of view. I was so, so, so mentally exhausted when I finished this book, and it was solely because Adelina’s point of view is a LOT to take in.

And the thing is, I WANT TO HATE IT BUT I LOVE IT. SO MUCH. I CAN’T.

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A NEW ADDITION TO THE ROSE SOCIETY:

Fast forward, they reach the ship. TURNS OUT, the mercenary is actually that one boy, now a guy, who Raffaele had talked about. The boy who could not control the rain. The one who had been kicked out of the Daggers, supposedly killed.The Rainmaker. And THIS, my friends, is the Rose Society.

Now, I really liked Sergio’s character. I liked that he had something against the Rose Society because I think that made the whole joining Adelina’s side a whole lot better and it was worth more. I loved the explanation of how his power worked. The whole gathering threads of moisture in the air to create storms, and the huge amount of concentration it took.

“He’s calling the rain,” she says as she approaches. “Weaving it, you might say.”

It may not seem like it, but I believe it to be a very unique power. It’s not just simply making a storm, as one would think. It’s putting it together. I love it.

SERGIO AND VIOLETTA:

Sergio and Violetta are OTP.

It’s impressive how even when Violetta attracted the attention of so many men, HER attention was attracted by Sergio. It’s very cute. They’re very cute. I ship it.giphy (1)

I wish we could’ve gotten to see more of them, and from their point of view. I wish we DO get to see more of them in the third book, although who knows if that’ll be possible with the way this book ended.

Nonetheless, the Rainmaker and the Puppet Master are OTP.

ROSE SOCIETY:

You know, I think this part was my favorite in the whole entire book. The one moment in which The Rose Society came to be, officially. It was so simple, which made it so much more beautiful and valuable in my eyes. And the fact that everyone contributed something to the pledge was so lovely, it made my heart swell up with pride and happiness and love for these characters.

“I pledge myself to the Rose Society,” I begin. “Until the end of my days.”

One by one, the others call out the same thing, murmurs at first that turn into firm words.

“To use my eyes to see all that happens,” says Sergio.

“My tongue to woo others to our side,” says Magiano with his savage smile.

“My ears to hear every secret,” Violetta continues.

“My hands,” I finish. “To crush my enemies.”

“I will do everything in my power to destroy all who stand in my way.”

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THE DAGGERS… PLUS MAEVE:

We also learn that the Daggers have made an alliance with Maeve and her Elites, aaaaaand that they want to bring Enzo back. NOPE. I loved Enzo with a fiery (pun intended), bUT THE DEAD SHOULD STAY DEAD! Bringing him back to life was seriously asking for trouble, specially if we take Maeve’s brother as an example. And even more so, when his life had to be tethered to someone else’s. NOPE.

Then there’s the Maeve factor. She’ll do whatever the hell she wants to get what she desires. And even when Raffaele wasn’t keen on the idea of bringing Enzo back, she did it anyways. AND THUS THE REASON WHY I’M NOT MUCH OF A MAEVE FAN.

I mean, how the Daggers, except maybe Raffaele, don’t realize that Maeve is simply using them to get to the throne of Estenzia is beyond me.

And then Adelina heard of their plans. Oh boy. This just… Adelina’s plan was incredibly clever. Brilliant. BUT I JUST DIDN’T WANT HIM ALIVE!

REASONS WHY ENZO SHOULDN’T HAVE BEEN BROUGHT BACK TO LIFE:

  1. Magiano. Magiano should Adelina’s ONLY love interest, and having Enzo back created some sort of love triangle that I didn’t appreciate very much.
  2. Almost every single thing Adelina did was biased by her past feelings and love for Enzo, thus making her more stubborn than she already was, and more blind to the fact that Enzo will never be the same, that he’s not there anymore.
  3. Whoever gets to keep Enzo will ultimately use him to get to the throne. No matter how much they deny it, this is all
    about getting to the throne, not about Enzo’s well being. BECAUSE IF IT WERE ABOUT ENZO’S WELL BEING, HE WOULD’VE STAYED DEAD. The only person in this book who truly cared about Enzo’s well being was Raffaele, but of course, his opinions and concerns didn’t matter. OF COURSE.
  4. If bringing back Enzo increased his power tenfold, then it’s obvious that he’ll be a danger to everyone! There was no predicting what he would do. And even with the tether to Adelina’s life, he’s ultimately too power, thus being able to control her and go against her, even if she’s the one that’s supposed to have the power over him.
  5. Having Enzo back just made the whole grudge between both sides of Elites a million times worse! They’re basically destroying each other over a dead guy! Over a throne too, but you know.
  6. Magiano.
  7. Believing Enzo would simply join Adelina’s side was stupid from her part. Completely stupid. He created the Dagger Society, for crying out loud! She couldn’t just expect him to ditch his friends, his family, to join her, past or no past.
  8. MAGIANO.tumblr_inline_mq3e38DGWq1qz4rgp

TEREN SANTORO:

MY PREDICTION. I KNEW IT. SOONER OR LATER ADELINA WAS GONNA USE HIM AS AN ALLY.

I could feel myself slowly growing more satisfied when Teren got farther and farther apart from Giulietta, because it meant he would turn to Adelina, or vice versa, sooner or later. And, I mean, Teren is not a good character. He’s very hateable, in fact. BUT, he’s a very interesting and intriguing character. This may be an unpopular opinion but I really, really want to see more of his character. Like really badly. I want to know more of him, of his past, of his reasons to feel the way he does and do the things he does. I want to know if he’s really as bad as he seems.

THE FINAL WAR-BATTLE-END-OF-THE-WORLD-CHAOTIC-MESS:

Here’s a compilation of Jack Sparrow gifs that expresses my feelings throughout this whole part quite adequately:

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There were so many things happening here and there, so much death, so much destruction, sO MANY FEELINGS, that I felt like my brain was going to explode. It was so fast paced and chaotic. I pretty much felt like I was there, right in the middle of chaos. My body was a lump of poop comprised of feelings, and angst, and tension, and I just… WHAT EVEN IS LIFE?!?!?!?!??!?!?!?!?

THE ENDING AKA WHAT THE HELL WAS THAT:

Can we just take a moment to talk about the ending? WHAT THE HELL WAS THAT?!

OKAY, VIOLETTA, LET ME GET THIS STRAIGHT. So what you’re telling me is that basically all Elites are bound to die young because of deterioration from their power? What? What??? BUT WHAT ABOUT MY DEARLY LOVED WICKED FREAK, ADELINA? AND THE NEW-FOUND LOVE OF MY LIFE, MAGIANO? WHAT ABOUT RAFFAELE, AND SERGIO, AND EVERYONE????WHAT?????? giphy (2)

WHAT DO YOU MEAN ALL ELITES ARE BOUND TO DIE YOUNG?

I can’t. I can’t deal with this anymore. My heart. My soul. Nope.

The worst part is that Adelina is deteriorating faster than the others because she keeps exploiting her powers more and more, letting the darkness eat away at her soul, slowly making herself go mad. SHE’S THE CAUSE OF HER OWN INSANITY ANd I don’t know if it’s because I’m reading from her point of view and she’s in denial, but I refuse to believe this. In my heart, I know it’s true, I know it, bUT I REFUSE TO BELIEVE IT WILL HAPPEN.

THERE MUST BE A SOLUTION, I JUST NEED TO FIND IT.

And then she just… She just… The ending… Violetta… It’s as if Marie Lu wants to make it incredibly evident that Adelina’s going insane (AS IF I DIDN’T KNOW THAT ALREADY). So insane that it’s driving her apart from her friends and family. *sobs*

It completely shatters my heart to see Adelina end up in such a dark state of isolation, and the fact that she doesn’t realize it’s her own fault. IT SHATTERS MY HEART, I TELL YOU.

“I force a smile onto my face. In the silence, I sit alone on my throne and wait eagerly for all the satisfaction and triumph to hit me. I wait, and wait, and wait.”

“But it doesn’t come”

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Look, I wish this review had been more organized and coherent but I’m still a wreck because of this book and I simply cannot be civilized about this at the moment. I probably forgot so many important things that I wanted to talk about in a civilized manner, but I just can’t get my shit together. I CAN’T. Maybe I’ll take it upon myself to write a shorter, more civilized review of this book, but for now, THIS IS WHAT YOU’LL GET. RAW EMOTIONS FROM THE BOTTOM OF MY STILL SORE SOUL.

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THANK YOU FOR YOUR ATTENTION.

GOODBYE.

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Adriana (4)

Cinder Book Review

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Book: Cinder (first installment of The Lunar Chronicles)

Author: Marissa Meyer

Genre: YA Science Fiction/ Retelling

Rating:  ★★★

Goodreads Blurb

“Vanity is a factor, but it is more a question of control. It is easier to trick others into perceiving you as beautiful if you can convince yourself you are beautiful. But mirrors have an uncanny way of telling the truth.”

Once upon a time, there was a teenage cyborg named Cinder with a questionable past, and some serious self-esteem issues, who was hated by everyone in New Beijing with exception of her little sister and her android side-kick Iko and maybe even the wonderfully handsome prince Kaito.

alrighty then.

Teenage cyborg? another level of cool.

Futuristic setting? coolio.

Evil beings that live on the moon? sign me up.

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Romantic subplot? …meh.

Cinder is a well-loved book, which is basically a nice way of saying that it’s been hyped up to the extreme.  And for that same reason I was beyond excited to finally be reading this book.  Truth is, I was pretty disappointed.  I’m a huge fan of fairy tale retellings and the moment I found out about our futuristic Cinderella, I had to give it a try; I was prepared to love this book to bits.  I expected scientific narration, a complex world filled with hover whats-its and holograms, and I got that…but in the lowest scale possible.

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That’s how I can best explain the entirety of this plot.  You’d think that with the setting, the description of the characters and the structure of the political system, this book would have a lot more depth that it truly has.  There’s so much to be learned and discovered in this story and the author took the liberty of barely scratching the surface and that irked me.  I wanted so much more! I wanted to know more about the Lunars, enough to keep me on my toes and craving for the next books in the series.  Instead, I got a whole lot of frustrating “mystery” and dull characterization.  I did like the diversity presented in the cast, I’m pretty dang tired of seeing white people as protagonists in novels (sorry if this offends anyone).

tumblr_mlhl0tXNTA1r3gb1do1_250It took me less than 100 pages to figure the entire plot, no joke.  And if there’s something I loathe in this world, it’s predictability.  I know what you’re all gonna say: it’s a retelling, it makes sense for it to be easy to figure out since you know the original story.  I’m gonna say this once (and probably many times again later on): just because a story is a retelling, doesn’t mean it has to follow the exact same story line of the original story.

If any of you have read A Court of Thorns and Roses and/or Crimson Bound, you know what I’m talking about.  Retellings are about keeping the essence of the story, not repeating it.  There are certain tropes that might be necessary to keep but the main reason these original stories were created was to present a life lesson.  If you portray that lesson in your story in an efficient and innovative way, you’ve got yourself a decent retelling.

Cinder is certainly creative with the whole cyborg adaptation and the introduction of the Lunars but it’s too vague with this new spin of the tale.  I’ve been told that with each book the story takes up a better shape and gets less predictable and I’m holding on to that hope!

As for Cinder the main character, I liked her.  Believe me, I did.  She was witty and very human, her internal monologues were fascinating and she made me giggle and root for her most of the time.  I really really really loved that she was a mechanic.  You don’t see that a lot in female characters in YA fiction, as if there aren’t young girls who are interested in engineering and science and math, and I was very glad for that crucial piece of individuality the author decided to give her.    She was kind of vain though but it’s an understandable quality due to the circumstances she’s been raised in.  All in all, she was very relatable and a good role model for all teenage girls out there who tend to stick out due to their differences and tastes.

The love interest was…okay. I didn’t really get to know Kaito all that much throughout the book so I really can’t say that I ship them to ends of the Earth.  I can ship them from here to the next street corner I guess.  I need more of him though to see if he’s worthy prospect.  Honestly, the romantic subplot bummed me out, which is not common for me since I’m a hopeless romantic.  In this story’s case, I didn’t find it necessary and it was just boring and more of an obstacle than anything.  Kaito didn’t offer much for Cinder.  PLUS, WHAT HE SAID IN THE ENDING KIND OF MADE ME HATE HIM A LITTLE (A LOT).

AND THAT’S ABOUT THE ONLY THING THAT I DID NOT SEE COMING. THE ENDING.  It’s the reason why I gave the book 3 stars instead of two.  The ending was heartbreaking and it got me screaming at everyone involved.  I NEED THAT IN A BOOK. I NEED TO BE SURPRISED AND PRONE TO EMOTIONAL OUTBURSTS.  IT WAS STILL CLICHE BUT IT WAS EXECUTED VERY WELL AND IT LEFT ME WANTING EVEN MORE.

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In conclusion: the book could’ve been much better.  There is still a lot to be discovered and I hope the rest of the series completes this enormous plot hole the first book left behind.

Camila

The 100 by Kass Morgan Review

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Book: The 100

Author: Kass Morgan

Genre: YA Dystopia/Sci-Fi

Rating: ★★★.5

Goodreads Blurb (for some reason the description is in a language that is foreign to me but I put the link anyways in case any of you understands it.)

“The rain was only water, and there was no such thing as a clean start. That was the thing with secrets – you had to carry them with you forever, no matter what the cost.”

I decided to read this book because I’d started watching the TV series of it and completely loved it. This is what I stumbled upon:

No one has been to Earth for a couple hundred years after the nuclear war. Everyone lives in space in a huge ship called the Colony that divides into three, Walden, Arcadia and Phoenix. That is, until they start running out of air, and the Colony decides to send a group of 100 confined teenagers to Earth in order for them to explore and see if it was once again habitable, as well as save air.

This book follows the life of 4 teenager’s, three of which were confined. There’s Clarke, who was a medical student, one of the best, until trusting her boyfriend (at that moment) with a little too much information ended in her confinement. Then there’s Wells, son of the chancellor, Clarke’s ex, who got himself confined on purpose with the resolve to find Clark and ultimately get back with her. We also have Bellamy, the Waldenite whose sister got taken away simply for being born, as only one child is allowed per family. Bellamy, who plans to infiltrate the 100 that are going to Earth, for his sister is there and he wants only to take care of her. And finally, we have Glass, who was confined for committing an “unforgivable crime,” who found no other choice than to break up with Luke, her Waldenite boyfriend, her “forbidden love,” in order to save his life. Glass who plans to escape the 100 and finally explain to Luke the reason why she’d been confined, the reason why she’d broken his heart without explanation, as she thought being sent to Earth meant death, and she was gonna be executed when she turned 18, anyways.

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CHARACTERS:

Clarke, from the book is pretty much the same as Clarke from the series. Very serious, driven, always caring for the well-being of others. She has that same still-coping-with-the-loss-off-my-parents thing going on as she does in the series, except that the reason for death of her parents in the book was very different, and that both her parents had died in the book, instead of just her dad. *shrugs* There’s not much depth to her character, maybe a little, but not much. I really don’t have much to say about her apart from the fact that I like her character.

Now, we got to see a little more of Wells in the book that we do in the series. He has that same betraying-Clarke-without-meaning-to thing going on, just like in the series, but we get an inside look at the situation from his point of view and learn about his actual intentions and why he did what he did. We also learn that his mother had passed away, and that he has grey eyes? You see, this may seem incredibly irrelevant, but it just messed up my whole vision of what Wells looks like. In the series he’s black and doesn’t have grey eyes, and he’s not exactly the most handsome guy out there, but then in the book the ONLY thing they mention regarding his physique is that he has grey eyes and that he’s incredibly handsome. So I didn’t know if I should imagine him black with grey eyes, and much more handsome, or as someone completely different than from the series, you feel? Do you understand what I mean when I say that it threw me off balance?

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Then, Bellamy. Sweet, wonderful, Bellamy. You know, I’ve always had a soft spot for Bellamy, even in the series when he was being a complete ass, but reading from his point of view and seeing just how much he cares about his sister, and learning how his mind works, and being able to see things as he sees them, it just made me love him even more. He’s a beautiful soul inside one hot piece of a body. I think I would’ve loved this book a gazillion times more if it were told only from his point of view. *sigh*

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Lastly there’s Glass, a completely new character to me, one which I didn’t expect to like so much. I mean, I wasn’t extremely all over her character, but I did really enjoy her chapters and learning about her. I guess it also may have had to do with the fact that her character was foreign to me and I was learning of her for the first time, whereas with the rest, I already knew of them because of the series.

RELATIONSHIPS IN THE BOOK:

Okay so, if you watch the series, you know how the love triangle was more between Clarke, Finn and Wells more than anyone else? Well the love triangle in this book is between Clarke, Bellamy and Wells, since Finn’s character isn’t part of the books. I was never much of a fan of Wells to begin with, and although I completely adore Bellamy and enjoyed his relationship with Clarke, I couldn’t help but feeling like this was a case of “insta-love.” I mean, they didn’t know each other before going to Earth, and it’s not like they spent a lot of time getting to know each other on earth. They were stranded on a possibly toxic planet, for God’s sake. Who has time for love when surviving is the #1 goal? It was kind of like… Flirting a couple times and then POOF! There you have it folks, insta-love. Enjoyable, but unnecessary and completely unbelievable.

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Now, Glass and Luke’s relationship I really, really liked. There was nothing extraordinary about it, but you could tell they did love and care for each other, and they had spent quite a long time together, so it felt more genuine and real.

WRITING AND PACE OF THE BOOK:

The way this book was written wasn’t particularly special or mind-blowing. *shrugs* It wasn’t as fast paced as I would’ve liked it to be but it wasn’t slow either. And even though the writing wasn’t spectacular, it was nice, and there were some quotes that I really loved, so I’ll give it that.

BOOK VS TV SERIES:

Although I did really like and enjoy this book, I think I agree with almost everyone else. The series is definitely a lot better than the book. It’s not that the book was bad, it was great, it just pales a little bit when compared to the series. But then again, who knows? Maybe if I’d read the book before watching the series I would’ve preferred it over the series. Maybe…

OVERALL FEELS:

This book was good, but it wasn’t something from another world. I enjoyed it but it didn’t blow me away. I gave it 3 and a half stars because even though it wasn’t amazing, I did really enjoy my time reading it. I don’t know, if you’re a picky reader then I don’t think this is the book for you, but I’m a fairly easy to please reader, so I guess it just depends on the reader’s preference. If you’re curious about it, give it a try! It’s not bad in the least, just not breathtaking.

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Now, if you could just please sign and support my petition for this book to be re-written from Bellamy’s point of view that’d be great, thanks, bye!

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Adriana (4)

Unpopular Opinion: Popular Books I Hated (part 1)

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I’m not much of a hater, I always try my best to see the good in people and in books.  But, alas, I am only human and sometimes I get filled with pure rage over silly things.  This year (so far) I’ve read a total of 76 books and among them are a couple of very hyped up books that I just…did not appreciate.  I’ll divide these into parts because there is an insane amount of hatred in my little body and I need to take it easy.  There might be some minor spoilers and swearing ahead so you’ve been warned!!!

Let’s start with the worst one of them all!

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Goodreads Blurb

Oh boy. Where to even begin with this trainwreck.

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If you haven’t read this piece of work then I really don’t recommend you do unless you’re looking for some horrible literature that’ll make you want to rip you hair out.  Talk about unimaginative characters, terrible plot line and boring narration.  So many things went wrong with this book, I still can’t process all of them.  First of all, nothing really happened in this book.  It was just a really long book about nothing.  The dialogue was stilted and unrealistic and everything was just so repetitive.  The same scenarios keep happening along the “story” over and over and you can’t help but groan at the lack of creativity.

Our main characters, Tessa and Hardin, are just straight up AWFUL people.

Tessa is just plain stupid, I swear.  Her ditziness is so forced that sometimes while reading I found myself screaming at the book because I could just NOT understand how she could be so stupid.  Not only that, but she was a cheater and tHEN SHE ACTED LIKE SHE WASN’T.  SHE WAS ALWAYS ASKING FOR TROUBLE AND THEN ACTED ALL INNOCENT AND VICTIMIZED WHEN SHE GOT IT.  I WANTED TO SLAP HER, REPEATEDLY.  SHE’S SUPPOSED TO BE THIS OVERACHIEVING NERD CHICK WITH A STICK UP HER ASS BUT SHE SURE IS A MORON WHEN IT COMES TO RELATIONSHIPS AND BEING A NORMAL HUMAN BEING.

Hardin took the shit cake though.  The author tried to portray him as this tortured soul who couldn’t handle love because he is just so jaded (BARF).

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Hardin is the shittiest leading man I’ve ever read.  Not only is he abusive towards Tessa, but he’s such a baby about things.  There was not an inch of maturity in his character and that’s a total turn off.  He’s supposed to be a “stereotypical bad boy” but mostly, he just whines about everything and throws the most ridiculous tantrums for no valid reason   whatsoever.

Back to the abuse; Hardin is very thorough with giving Tessa a total mental breakdown.  He makes her extremely insecure and ruins any possible relationship she might have had in the future.  I’m not saying that Tessa didn’t provoke him at times, because she did, but Hardin really was a psychotic little fucker with no self control.  Not only that, but later on they try to excuse his behavior by telling us his sob story, WHICH STILL DOES NOT IN ANY CASE EXCUSE WHAT AN ABSOLUTE ASSHOLE HE IS.

So yeah, toxic relationship and abuse? check.  Repetitive scenarios with no originality whatsoever? check.  Slutshaming? double check.

Needless to say, I’m not continuing this series anytime soon.

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Camila