Review: Aerie

AerieTitle: Aerie (Magonia #2)
Author: Maria Dahvana Headley
Pages: 320
Published by: HarperCollins
Release date: 4th October 2016
Synopsis:
Where is home when you were born in the stars?

Aza Ray is back on earth. Her boyfriend Jason is overjoyed. Her family is healed. She’s living a normal life, or as normal as it can be if you’ve spent the past year dying, waking up on a sky ship, and discovering that your song can change the world.

As in, not normal. Part of Aza still yearns for the clouds, no matter how much she loves the people on the ground.

When Jason’s paranoia over Aza’s safety causes him to make a terrible mistake, Aza finds herself a fugitive in Magonia, tasked with opposing her radical, bloodthirsty, recently-escaped mother, Zal Quel, and her singing partner, Dai. She must travel to the edge of the world in search of a legendary weapon, the Flock, in a journey through fire and identity that will transform her forever.

Purchase from: Amazon | Book Depository | Waterstones

goodreads

Firstly, thank you to the publisher for sending me a copy of Aerie to review!

Review:

I absolutely adored Magonia, the first book in this duology – it was one of my favourite books of 2015 (and all time!) and I talk about it any chance I can get. So I was extremely excited when I heard about Aerie. But going into it, I had very high expectations. And looking back, I think I probably set my expectations a tad too high, because – I didn’t enjoy Aerie as much.

I think the largest problem I had with this book is that I completely lost track of what was going on. There was so much time when nothing was really happening and it just seemed like the characters were spending more time talking about things than actually doing them and it just made the plot drag.

The characters didn’t seem the same, either. Or, really, just Aza and Jason. I loved them in book one. Their personalities were so fun and original and they were a joy to read about. And this shone through at the beginning of Aerie primarily, but less, I felt, in the rest of the book. I still love them, of course, but they frustrated me a lot at times.

I loved Eli in this book, though. We didnt see very much of her in the last book, so I was so glad that she had a bigger part in Aerie. She was so kick ass and sarcastic and I think she might even be my new favourite character in the series. I also loved seeing some of my faves from Magonia return, like Wedda and Jik.

I mentioned in my Magonia review how I loved the writing, its uniqueness, but I felt like there was something missing about it in this book. I still adore the writing style, but to me, it just didnt feel the same as in Magonia. The world building, though, was as brilliant as in book 1, and I really liked seeing more of the world of Magonia.

Rating: Overall, I don’t think that Aerie completely lived up to what it could have been, but I also don’t think that it was too bad.  ★★★☆☆

Review: Frostblood

frostbloodTitle: Frostblood
Author: Elly Blake
Pages: 304
Published by: Hodder and Stoughton
Release date: 12th January 2017
Synopsis:
In a land governed by the cruel Frostblood ruling class, seventeen-year-old Ruby is a Fireblood who has spent most of her life hiding her ability to manipulate heat and light – until the day the soldiers come to raid her village and kill her mother. Ruby vows revenge on the tyrannous Frost King responsible for the massacre of her people.

But Ruby’s powers are unpredictable…and so are the feelings she has for Arcus, the scarred, mysterious Frostblood warrior who shares her goal to kill the Frost King, albeit for his own reasons. When Ruby is captured by the Frost King’s men, she’s taken right into the heart of the enemy. Now she only has one chance to destroy the maniacal ruler who took everything from her – and in doing so, she must unleash the powers she’s spent her whole life withholding.

Frostblood is set in world where flame and ice are mortal enemies – but together create a power that could change everything.
Purchase from: Amazon | Book Depository | Waterstones

goodreads

Firstly, thank you tons to Hodder and Stoughton for sending me a proof of Frostblood to review!

Review:

It’s been days since I finished Frostblood, and I still cant get it out of my mind.It was glorious and gripping and so much fun and feels all mixed together. I am in love.

This book grabbed my attention from the start, pulled me right into the pages and spat me out at the end with a whole load more feels than I had before, in the best possible way. It was so fast paced and engaging that I could not tear my eyes away.

I loved the main character, Ruby. She was such a great character to read about – fierce, strong and funny. She’s a character who is not afraid to defend herself and what she believes in and I loved that! It was a pleasure reading her adventure. And  I adored Arcus in equal measures (which is a lot).  I loved seeing them grow as a characters and I can only imagine how much more this will be in book 2, since they both have a lot to deal with after all that happened in this book. Their stories were a complete whirlwind and I can’t wait to see where they – and all the characters from the Abbey, who were a delight to read about – go in the next book.

I loved Elly Blake’s writing. The world building was amazing and the plot was so, so addicting. I literally could not put this book down. Seriously. I stayed up until 4am to finish reading it, and even after then I couldn’t sleep because all I could think was what happens next? and now what do I do with my life? (100% worth the tiredness that came the next day).

This was one fiery (haha, sorry) debut and  I am dying to see what happens next. The sequel, Fireblood, cannot come soon enough!

Rating: ★★★★★

My Favourite Books of 2016!

It really doesn’t seem like a whole year has passed since my ‘Top Books of 2015‘ post, but here we are again with my favourite books of 2016!

Like last year, I didn’t manage to read as many books as I’d hoped, or beat my Goodreads Reading Challenge (I am DETERMINED to beat it next year. I refuse to be defeated.), but there have been so many good ones in the 21 books I did read. Here are my favourites!

The Girl of Ink and Stars by Kiran Millwood Hargrave

the-girl-of-ink-and-stars

The Girl of Ink and stars was pure magic and so, so beautiful, and I am so happy I got around to reading it this year.

*You can read my review here!

A Torch Against the Night by Sabaa Tahir

a-torch-against-the-night

The wait for book 2 after An Ember in the Ashes (which was in my Top Books of 2015) was torture, and I really was not disappointed when ATATN was released. I can’t wait for book 3!

*You can read my review here!

Nevernight by Jay Kristoff

nevernight

I’m sure this book will be on many 2016 faves lists, and for good reason! It’s glorious.

*You can read my review here!

Paper Butterflies by Lisa Heathfield

Paper Butterflies

This book completely shattered my heart and made me cry many, many times but it was so spectacular, so important and beautifully written.

*You can read my review here!

Rebel of the Sands by Alwyn Hamilton

Rebel of the Sands

I loved Rebel of the Sands and I am so excited for book two. Not long now! Eeek!

*You can read my review here!

The Island by Olivia Levez

The Island

The Island was raw and amazing and I can’t recommend it enough.

*You can read my review here!

And that’s it until next year! Wishing you all a very happy and bookish new year!

Top Ten Tuesday: My Favourite Bookish Shops

toptentuesday

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme created and hosted by The Broke and the Bookish. Each week they suggest a new theme with a list for bloggers to choose from. This week was a gift freebie, so I decided to tell you all about my favorite bookish themed shops!

Literary Emporium

Literary Emporium is a great place to find cool bookish things, from jewellery to bookmarks. I have a necklace from there that I got for my birthday this year and I wear it almost every day, I love it so much!

Bookworm Boutique

I love the prints in this shop, and you can get them on mugs and phone cases, too!

Oh Panda Eyes

This shop has the cutest bookish jewellery. I want them all!

Frostbeard 

I am obsessed with bookish candles, and I received one from this shop in an Owlcrate box a while ago and it smells divine. Is it acceptable to spend all my money on book scented candles?

My Bookmark

These bookmarks are so great

Not On The Highstreet

I never thought to look on this website for bookish things until a few days ago, but there is so much on there! They have everything!

Appraising Pages

The T-shirts in this shop look so cool, I kinda want to buy them all.

Waiting on Wednesday: Carve the Mark

waiting-on-wednesday

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly feature hosted by Breaking the Spine which spotlights exciting up and coming releases.

My pick for this week:

Carve the Mark by Veronica Roth

carve-the-mark

Release date:17th January 2017

Synopsis:

On a planet where violence and vengeance rule, in a galaxy where some are favored by fate, everyone develops a currentgift, a unique power meant to shape the future. While most benefit from their currentgifts, Akos and Cyra do not — their gifts make them vulnerable to others’ control. Can they reclaim their gifts, their fates, and their lives, and reset the balance of power in this world?

Cyra is the sister of the brutal tyrant who rules the Shotet people. Cyra’s currentgift gives her pain and power — something her brother exploits, using her to torture his enemies. But Cyra is much more than just a blade in her brother’s hand: she is resilient, quick on her feet, and smarter than he knows.

Akos is from the peace-loving nation of Thuve, and his loyalty to his family is limitless. Though protected by his unusual currentgift, once Akos and his brother are captured by enemy Shotet soldiers, Akos is desperate to get his brother out alive — no matter what the cost. When Akos is thrust into Cyra’s world, the enmity between their countries and families seems insurmountable. They must decide to help each other to survive — or to destroy one another.

goodreads

Why am I excited?

I absolutely loved Veronica Roth’s Divergent trilogy. It’s one of my favourites! Carve the Mark sounds like another awesome read and I can. Not. Wait!

What releases are you waiting on?

Top Ten Tuesday: Books I’ve Recently Added to My Ever Growing TBR

toptentuesday

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme created and hosted by The Broke and the Bookish. Each week they suggest a new theme with a list for bloggers to choose from. This week was books I’ve recently added to my tbr.

So, here are some of the books I’ve bought/ received and added to the towering pile of books that is my tbr recently!

The Night Circus my Erin Morgenstern

the-night-circus

The Sun is Also a Star by Nicola Yoon

Yoon_9780553496680_jkt_all_r1.indd

 

Gemina by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff

Gemina

Heartless by Marissa Meyer

heartless

What Light by Jay Asher

what-light

And some of the books I’ve recently discovered and can’t wait to read!

A Shiver of Snow and Sky by Lisa Lueddecke

(no cover yet!)

Carve the Mark by Veronica Roth

carve-the-mark

Flame in the Mist by Renée Ahdieh

flame-in-the-mist

History Is All You Left Me by Adam Silvera

history-is-all-you-left-me

Wintersong by S. Jae-Jones

wintersong

 

All of these books sound so amazing. I can’t wait to read them all!

 

 

Review: The Girl of Ink and Stars

the-girl-of-ink-and-starsTitle: The Girl of Ink and Stars
Author: Kiran Millwood Hargrave
Pages: 288
Published by: Chicken House
Release date: 5th May 2016
Synopsis:

Forbidden to leave her island, Isabella Riosse dreams of the faraway lands her father once mapped.

When her closest friend disappears into the island’s Forgotten Territories, she volunteers to guide the search. As a cartographer’s daughter, she’s equipped with elaborate ink maps and knowledge of the stars, and is eager to navigate the island’s forgotten heart.

But the world beyond the walls is a monster-filled wasteland – and beneath the dry rivers and smoking mountains, a legendary fire demon is stirring from its sleep. Soon, following her map, her heart and an ancient myth, Isabella discovers the true end of her journey: to save the island itself.

Purchase from: Amazon | Book Depository | Waterstones

goodreads

Review:

The Girl of Ink and Stars was so much more than I expected. The story was so immersive and despite it being quite short, I felt like I’d read a book that was so much longer, there was so much story in it, and it was so well written and developed.

The book follows Isabella, the daughter of a cartographer who is determined to use her skills to find her best friend Lupe. I loved reading her journey of discovery as she uncovered the island’s secrets and mysteries, the heartbreaks and worries along the way to finding her best friend, and the sheer adventure of mapping the forgotten parts of the island. This book is a roller coaster of emotions and is truly an adventure worth reading!

Characterisation in this book was great, and there was so much character development in both the main character, Isabella, and her best friend Lupe, which is really quite a feat since Lupe isn’t even in that much of the book. Both characters were so great, and they grew so much stronger and greater throughout the book.

I absolutely loved the writing in The Girl of Ink and Stars. It was so beautiful and effortless, and the world building was spectacular, the landscapes, places, myths and maps were all so vivid. I stayed up so late to keep reading just because I literally could not stop. The end of every chapter had me wanting to keep reading.

And just look at that cover! (AND, there are drawings on the inside pages, too, which is so cool!) The Girl of Ink and Stars just might be the most beautiful book on my bookshelf!

Rating: ★★★★★