Review: Lord Of Shadows

Author: Cassandra Clare

Genre: Young Adult Fantasy

My Rating: 3.5 stars

GoodReads Average Rating: 4.58 stars

GoodReads Synopsis:  A Shadowhunter’s life is bound by duty. Constrained by the honour. The word of Shadowhunter is a solemn pledge, and no vow is more sacred than the vow that binds parabatai, warrior partners—sworn to fight together, die together, but never to fall in love. Emma Carstairs has learned that the love she shares with her parabatai, Julian Blackthorn, isn’t just forbidden—it could destroy them both. She knows she should run from Julian. But how can she when the Blackthorns are threatened by enemies on all sides? Their only hope is the Black Volume of the Dead, a spell book of terrible power. Everyone wants it. Only the Blackthorns can find it. Spurred on by a dark bargain with the Seelie Queen, Emma; her best friend, Cristina; and Mark and Julian Blackthorn journey into the Courts of Faerie, where glittering revels hide bloody danger and no promise can be trusted. Meanwhile, rising tension between Shadowhunters and Downworlders has produced the Cohort, an extremist group of Shadowhunters dedicated to registering Downworlders and “unsuitable” Nephilim. They’ll do anything in their power to expose Julian’s secrets and take the Los Angeles Institute for their own. When Downworlders turn against the Clave, a new threat rises in the form of the Lord of Shadows—the Unseelie King, who sends his greatest warriors to slaughter those with Blackthorn blood and seize the Black Volume. As dangers close in, Julian devises a risky scheme that depends on the cooperation of an unpredictable enemy. But success may come with a price he and Emma cannot even imagine, one that will bring with it a reckoning of blood that could have repercussions for everyone and everything they hold dear.


Let me first start off by saying that ever since I started to read Cassandra’s books, I haven’t been a fan – most of them have left me unemotional or even bored, and I was never a huge fan of the author herself. So to say I was surprised when I picked up Lady Midnight for a reread and found that I was tense with excitement for the plot is an understatement. I knew The Dark Artifices was Cassandra’s best one yet so I was very curious to find out how the second book went, I reread Lady Midnight and then finally cracked open Lord of Shadows. And blow me down, this has steadily made its way up the list of my favourite books.

Having grown attached to all the characters in Lady Midnight, I was very excited to see how Cassandra developed their character arcs. And my freaking heart was torn apart. I had grown even more attached to these characters, the family dynamics, the relationships, the secrets, the trust and the unending love between them all made me want to give them a huge squishy hug and keep them protected. And well to say Cassandra crushed my ability to move afterwards is an understatement. Y’all must be prepared for a pile of laughter, tears and love when it comes to the Dark Artifice characters. Another thing that made me really enjoy this book was the mix of all the old and new characters, I enjoyed seeing the mix of the twisted dark faeries and then the faded old faces appearing now and then. But there were some characters that I just wanted to strangle so much. Oh my gosh, towards the end my temper was running high and I really just wanted to reach inside the page and shake them all. Cassandra did a really good job of building up different dynamics and levels of villains in this book. Which brings me onto another thing, the antihero (? – I don’t feel they really class as a villain) is so complex which I love as it brings much more depth to the page than the average I-am-just-evil-for-the-sake-of-it trope.

Moreover, another thing that I adored was the plot. I have always loved Cassandras writing – which is I believe I keep coming back to her books because I just can’t seem to be kept away! But this book especially, the writing was descriptive another that the plot flowed onto the next page seamlessly – but not too flowery that it had me skimming the pages awaiting the next action. And alongside the writing, I really, really enjoyed how Cassandra opened up more of the shadow hunter world and as a reader, we got to explore the depths of the Faerie lands, and more into the dark history of their past.

SPOILERS REGARDING A SIDE RELATIONSHIP AHEAD

But despite all this good stuff that I am banging on about I do need to make it clear that this book does have a lot of problems. As a bisexual reader, I was ecstatic reading about Mark and him being so openly bi, however, this does not excuse the on and off uncomfortable feeling I had regarding the love triangle thingy he was in. A love triangle by itself is enough to make me grit my teeth, but what some readers have to understand, that by placing the only bi character in a loose end relationship with two characters makes him fall into the harmful threesome trope for bisexuals and in my opinion rubbed me the wrong way, as it comes across as the stereotypical bi man who wants both genders at the same time. My only hope is that in the next book this love triangle relationship thing going on actually develops into a positive polyamorous relationship between Mark, Cristina and Kerian with some good rep – which, by the way, my good friend Romie pointed out would be a good way for the plot and relationship to develop. (Go check her out at https://romiewedeservelove.wordpress.com/!!!)

Another thing that I need to say is that I was not entirely happy with the way Cassandra portrayed Diana’s coming out as transgender. As it was a secret for the majority of two books, when she said she was transgender it was presented like a plot twist or came across as if it was meant to have a shock factor. This is very harmful to Trans readers because no one’s identity should be used as a plot device for other readers’ pleasure. However, please also do bear in mind that LGBTQIA+ readers are not monolithic so therefore not all trans readers may mind it being kept a secret, but for some people, it is harmful therefore should be stopped. Another thing to be wary of is Trigger Warnings for the use of Diana being dead named. This happened a lot over a small amount of space – so please, everyone keep safe and protect yourselves.

Overall, this book is certainly placed high on my end list of 2017 favourites and I can not believe we have to wait another two years till the next one!! Although after that ending…. Even I would have to recover from writing such plot!!!! If you have yet to pick up any of Cassandra’s books – I would highly recommend these – although you may want to familiarise yourself with the shadow hunter world first!

-S O P H

Coffee Catch Up

Hi, guys! So today I am doing something a little different which was inspired by What A Crime of Rhyme weekend warrior posts! So each month I will just go give you guys a little update – or a coffee catch up if you like, just to show you what I have been doing and feeling! I hope you enjoy!

Listening to: Recently I have been soaking in feels due to the whimsical voice of Highasakite. Her songs are truly atmospheric and moving. I would highly recommend adding “Lover, Where Do You Live” and “God Don’t Leave Me” to your writing playlist if you need to get the emotions running.

Currently Read (since I have been on break):

Not Your Sidekick – 50000/5 stars

Vengeance Road: 4/5 stars

Wintersong: 4/5 stars

Empress of a Thousand Skies: 4/5 stars

The Young Elites (reread): 5/5 stars

Munching on: Well I actually haven’t been eating anything continually, but last week my mom got rosemary sourdough bread and we topped it with cream cheese and salmon….and ahh it was possibly the best I have eaten in a while!!

Sipping on: Because I’m a baby I normally just stick to my classic mocha every morning but I have also grown rather fond of Cortado which is similar to what Flat Whites should be like if you are wondering (the British make flat whites too milky – just saying)

Watching: Skam. All day every day. I have one last episode before I have finished all the seasons !!!  It’s so relatable, funny and emotional and a very realistic portrayal of teenagers lives! You can find it easily online on google drive!

Obsessing over: My new fairy loot book that just arrived and the bEAUTIFUL book that came with it – honestly I have been stroking its pages for the last two hours!

Feeling like: Tired but satisfied, I have been working non-stop since February so the last week I have pushed the aching thoughts of exams and homework aside and focused on myself – it doesn’t mean I have got anything really done but it feels good – like rubbing a strained back muscle before relaxing into a slump.

Hangin’ in and at:  I have been wearing my usual comfy clothes of turtlenecks and skirts but because of my new found love – Noora – I have also been leaning towards the slim jeans, junky jumper, straight hair, dark lipstick kind of look. I’ve been hanging at The Pudding Stop Film Club and a new cafe called Hatch.

Looking forward to: Easter break with days filled with slanted sunlight, cozy breakfasts and leafed through books. I am also looking forward to seeing Beauty and The Beast in cinema in a few weeks at my favorite independent cinema!

That’s all from me guys! Hopefully, I will do one of these coffee catch ups each month filling you in on what’s going on in my life!

– S O P H

 

 

Review: The Star Touched Queen

Author: Roshani Chokshi

Genre: Young Adult Fantasy/Mythology

My Rating: 4 stars

GoodReads Rating: 3.58 stars

GoodReads Synopsis: 

Maya is cursed. With a horoscope that promises a marriage of death and destruction, she has earned only the scorn and fear of her father’s kingdom. Content to follow more scholarly pursuits, her whole world is torn apart when her father, the Raja, arranges a wedding of political convenience to quell outside rebellions. Soon Maya becomes the queen of Akaran and wife of Amar. Neither roles are what she expected: As Akaran’s queen, she finds her voice and power. As Amar’s wife, she finds something else entirely: Compassion. Protection. Desire…

But Akaran has its own secrets—thousands of locked doors, gardens of glass, and a tree that bears memories instead of fruit. Soon, Maya suspects her life is in danger. Yet who, besides her husband, can she trust? With the fate of the human and Otherworldly realms hanging in the balance, Maya must unravel an ancient mystery that spans reincarnated lives to save those she loves the most…including herself.


The Star Touched Queen was one of my most anticipated reads for 2017, after having people rave about it…and rave about it…and rave about it I knew it would have to be one of my first reads of the year. I went into the book not actually knowing that much, except it, was enriched with Hindu, not Indian which most people assume, mythology (which I am a SUCKER for) and was also a unique retelling of Hades and Persophone (again another thing I am a SUCKER for) so I was expecting good things. Very good things.

And let me tell you I was not disappointed.

Roshani opens up the world with a waterfall of colours and words as she drags us down into a deep world practically thrumming with vibrancy. This is one thing that completely made the book for me. Roshani writing style is very flowery and beautiful – for some people, this may be a problem – but oh I do love sentences that are dripped in richness. She perfectly describes the world of the Night Bazaar and Mayas kingdom and draws the reader tighter into a magical world that is like a tightly woven tapestry. Honestly, sentences that Roshani wrote still haunt me everywhere I go. So if you are a reader that loves good worldbuilding and flowery language. You. Have. To. Read. This.

Alongside the perfect worldbuilding and writing, Roshani grants the readers with relatable and human characters. We have Maya who is our main heroine and is so realistic. She may not be my most favourite character in the world – but her character development was interesting.  Maya is a young girl, who has been shunned by her family and society for all of her life for something she can’t help, and then she grows to be herself – strong and independent under the guiding hand of Amar *cue swoon* and then into a woman who realises her fault of jealousy, doubt, and regret but accepts them. However, despite these fantastic qualities I really like how Maya was strong and wanted so much more from life than just being a wife.Alongside Maya we have Amar who is honestly my love of my life – he was just perfect. And Roshani also includes some really interesting side characters Gauri, who I can not wait to read about in Crown of Wishes because she honestly sounds and looks so badass.

However there were some things that made me bring down my rating a little bit – the villain of the story was a popular trope used for villains that I was not really a fan of – never have been real. This meant I just find our villain annoying to the plotline rather than sinister or intimidating. Another thing was that I was a bit unsure about was although the writing was like pure jewel stones it sometimes meant that the plot was a bit basic and simple and had no real depth to it. However, I thoroughly enjoyed this diverse beautiful story and it was very refreshing to see something over than the classical white-medieval-fantasy.

Overall highly HIGHLY recommend!!!

– S O P H

Lets Talk About Sarah J Maas

So. I have been wanting to write this post since November last year – around the time I wrote my need for diversity blog post. It is taking a lot of patience not to rush this is all out. But no I wanted to wait until all my thoughts were ordered, to make sure that I didn’t write anything that I would regret later. I was also a little afraid – not because it is an unpopular opinion what I am about to write about – but because I didn’t want to seem hypercritical. But here I am writing it.

*Disclaimer: This post is full of spoilers – it would be virtually impossible to write it without any. So if you would like to read her books, I would advise you not to read ahead.

I have always been the biggest Sarah J Maas fan you have ever known – ever since reading all her books in 2015 I have been obsessed with her creations, she was actually the first author I thought was ‘the one’. Until now.  I think I have always realised that Throne of Glass and A Court of Mist and Fury are problematic and racist. But it wasn’t until late fall last year that I truly began to accept that her books are in fact not that great after all. It sent my brain into chaos, half of my brain wanting to love these books to death the other half angry as hell that I was so willing blind towards these books. I was angry, confused and did not know what on earth to do about it. That is till I read this blog post: http://thebookavid.blogspot.co.uk/2017/01/problematic-ya-books-by-mostly-non.html and it didn’t completely change my view but it helped me straighten a few things in my head and how I was going to approach a lot of books on my bookcase.

So the next thing I did was do a quick reread of the books – marking everything with a fresh mind – making A NEW OPINION – an opinion which overtakes what I have said before about these books and an opinion that I will now talk about regardless of what I have said in the past. Here is a little mini-review of each book from TOG:


Throne Of Glass:

Right, so this book, I think nearly everyone will agree with me, is actually alright. It has magical world building and Maas perfectly crafts a story that is suitable and interesting for YA fantasy readers. I think her characters in this one are surreal, they are flawed, well developed and lovable. We get a plot that is faced paced, rich in colour and voice and pretty much leaves you screaming for the next book. Maas perfectly operates information by giving us suitable sips of the world she has created but still keeping us slightly in the shadows. Sure there is the cliche trope of love triangles emerging, and Celaena is quite a typical white-heroine-escaping-from-her-past type of character – but nevertheless it is an amazing read. And there is also not, from what I’ve learnt and read, really anything wrong/offensive with this book. So my rating still stays as 5 stars.


Crown Of Midnight:

The next book in the series is always the one everyone fears for. But Maas effortlessly slides into the next narrative – she opens up a darker twisted world that Celaena tried to ignore in the first book. Trust and betrayal are tested, friendships are formed and broken – and everyone’s past and future slowly start to unravel in rich writing. The plot is intense and exciting leaving us breathless for the next chapter. We discover Dorains power and another kick ass story line starts to blossom alongside our heroine, we fall head over heels for a relationship between with Celaena and Choal – one that seemed impossible and was so carefully developed. And then Sarah J Maas kills the only person of colour character (that we are physically aware of) off. And in a bloody brutal way. I think this is what turned the ending off a lot for me – most people love this book (in fact it’s the last book they really like!!) But that death still haunts me to this day and how it is dealt with in the later books makes me physically sick. I have to admit the ending of the book was pretty amazing and even I (the master of discovering endings) didn’t spot it coming – and Maas leaves us on a bittersweet note as our trio is separated – off to find their destiny. My rating on this book is now 4 stars. 


Heir Of Fire:

A lot of people are turned off by this book – with it being about 400 pages of virtually nothing and Rowan being decrepit as glorifying abusive towards Celaena, I understand. However I still have a soft spot for this book in my heart, I was really interested in this new world expansion Maas offered us and was excited to see the new demons on the world. I also thought that Celaena character development was very important – and refreshing in a way – as I had never really seen characters mourn after dramatic deaths, and seeing Celaena change and grow after her best friend’s death actually helped me in a way. Another opinion about this book is I loved Manon story line. A lot of people didn’t, but I thought she was such a dark and twisted character that I was desperate to explore her background and see how her story became involved with the rest of our trio. Now, this is common knowledge if you know me. I liked Rowan in Heir of Fire. I liked how their relationship played out – just a strong friendship where the almost both helped each other from the dark hole they were in. I know now what a jackass he was and also how it was so not okay how things developed in the next couple of books. Another thing I noticed rereading was the lack of Dorian and Choal story line – I was really desperate to see some action around these two, especially with Sorscha in the picture. And we didn’t get any until the last couple. And then Maas killed off another person of colour off. My rating: 3 stars


Queen Of Shadows:

Then there is this book. This book is just shambled. It is a mess. I don’t know if its because Maas was getting sick of writing the book, she didn’t plan it properly or whatever it what its a total mess. You go in extremely over the moon because I mean the trio is getting back together! We have Dorian who is living in the shadow of a terrible father and has a freaking demon inside him!! We have Celaena who is more bad-ass than ever and with a passion for revenge for the family and friends she lost. And of course, Chaol, who was by far the most well-developed, most flawed character in the series – who was battling against the views he was brought up with. And all these characters disappear. We barely get anything from Dorian and that just pisses me off – his storyline could have been amazing except we only get a couple of POV from him. Celaena is not even existing like WHAT IS happening why is there this rude, unloyal, mean person in place of someone who is kind, loyal and strong?! And then chaol. This was the shittest piece of character development I have ever seen in my life. Chaol did not deserve this at all, he deserved more time on him. And what the hell happened to chaol and Celaena relationship? I know they spent time apart but why are they so mean to each other? What is happening? They were in a relationship that was beautifully developed and pure and Sarah just goes and ruins it?

And then Rowan and Aedion are introduced:  1. What the is this fae bullsh*t? This trio makes me so angry like I do not get or like it. 2. Rowan and Aelin are not a great couple and they can leave. I was fine with them being friends but this whole sexualizing their relationship in a blink of an eye and ignoring the past they went through together is enough to make me pull my eyes out.

Then there is the plot. Which is a mess? I did not like it. I didn’t like Abroyness death. Like I think Lysandra’s cool and a complex character and her character development was perfect. But in all seriousness? That was the most boring death I have seen for a group of killers. then there was also the situation regarding the king That ‘redemption’ was a total cop out and just makes my eyes water. And then they leave Dorian who has been tormented by a demon to run a kingdom? It does not make any sense. The only part I enjoyed was Manon and Elide but that was mucked up in the next book. My rating: 1 star. 


Empire of Storms: 

This book had some serious major flaws that I am deeply disappointed were not addressed by any editors or publishers. First of Nephima. That story of how she ventured to find her destiny? Yes? And then it turns out she is not the one but Celaena is? That is the whitest and most offensive use of “white saviour trope” I have ever seen.

Rowan and Aelin relationship is creepy and unnecessary and should not be in a Young Adult book. It was completely undeveloped and like she is 19? What is she doing that sort of stuff on the beach please stop? Aelin is literally a 2D character. I didn’t relate to her. I didn’t feel what she was feeling. I didn’t hear her views because Maas was doing her ‘secret’ thing. She may as well of be a minor character. She was boring and predictable.

Also, what was Dorian character development? We literally saw nothing of him. Maas promised us a dark and twisted character who is struggling because duh he has had a demon inside him. The only dark thing we get is handcuffs. Nothing. Where was his pain? Where was he missing his best friend, his mother? Where was his confused guilt over his father? I swear to god if Maas makes him the ‘one’ to die I will riot.

I also really didn’t like how everyone got paired off. It was totally unnecessary and didn’t make any sense at all. Adeion and Lysandra relationship was toxic. Elide and Lorchan no thank you. And Manon and Dorian can just leave thank you very much. Manon and Elide could have happened and it could have been amazing but no.

Moreover, that ending was too intense with me and I felt extremely uncomfortable with Maeve. Which I suppose made her a really good villain. But the whole mask and box thing? That was really scary and I didn’t like it. Although I did feel we got a shimmer of the old Celaena during that scene. But that was it.

And then Chaol was not even in the book. My rating 1 star.


I am not the angry with Acomaf as I am with Tog. But it still has problems. I understand what Maas was going in ACOTAR so I guess it’s okay in a way? But Rhysand and Feyre relationship still glories a bit – I mean I know it was all for a reason and the stuff he did do to her he had to – but still, I’m a little uncomfortable with the books and won’t fully know my opinion till I reread them again.

So you are probably wondering what I am going to do about. First thing first lets me get this straight. I still like these books – I deeply know their flaws and are wholly not supporting them however like the blog post said I can still like them. And I do, I do like the world and some of the characters and I am interested in how this is going to play out in the last book. So pre-warning. I will still be posting about these books when they are about to be released. I will be talking about them. However this time I am not hyping them up. I am not making a big deal about them. And my reviews are going to be blunt and straight to the point about how she dealt with her problems in her book.

Thank you for reading this

-S O P H

Review: Three Dark Crowns

Author: Kendare Blake

Genre: Young Adult/ Fantasy

My Rating: 2 stars

Good Reads Rating:3.86 stars

Good Reads Synopsis: 

In every generation on the island of Fennbirn, a set of triplets is born—three queens, all equal heirs to the crown and each possessor of a coveted magic. Mirabella is a fierce elemental, able to spark hungry flames or vicious storms at the snap of her fingers. Katharine is a poisoner, one who can ingest the deadliest poisons without so much as a stomachache. Arsinoe, a naturalist, is said to have the ability to bloom the reddest rose and control the fiercest of lions.

But becoming the Queen Crowned isn’t solely a matter of royal birth. Each sister has to fight for it. And it’s not just a game of win or loss…it’s life or death. The night the sisters turn sixteen, the battle begins.

The last queen standing gets the crown.


I went into this book not even really knowing what it was about – I had seen arc readers give it high reviews and the cover was pretty so it was a rather impulsive buy! I had never read anything by Blake but I had high hopes as the blurb sounded interesting – and different from usual fantasy books. I mean bloodthirsty sisters who are set out to kill each other in a bloodshed of religion and political worlds. UM yes, plurs?!! I thought this book was going to be action packed, dark and full of female power. But it wasn’t really what I expected.

The fist thing I noticed about this book is the writing. This is one thing I will always catch onto whatever book I read and it’s deeply important as even if a book wasn’t that exciting – if the writing was good I wouldn’t have noticed it. And so when I opened this book, I was straight away disappointed. I don’t know if this is just Blakes’ style but although her writing was not exactly bad – it certainly was fast paced – it was very very simple and at times boring to read. I personally like writing that has depth and colour to it, and this writing lacked a certain vibrancy and it became quite flat and monotone.

This then brings me to the characters. They were all just a bit boring to me and seemed more interested in their ‘lovers’ then the fact they are actually going to die? These sisters by god could have been amazing, but with the strange pov narration of all of them made them became rather 2d and none of them was fleshed out. So instead of a cunning, sly poisoner who was bent on winning despite being weak we got someone who was a bit pathetic and boring and cared more about being seductive than anything else (although the ending did make me perk up a bit), instead of a brutal harsh naturalist who lacks gifts but doesn’t care about what people think  we get someone who whines a lot and whose female empowerment backfired drastically, instead of an elemental who is battling against the views of how she was built up and adamant of bringing sisterhood back, we get someone who is a bit mopey and dreary and oh also more obsessed with a random boy that she has suddenly fallen in love with. And let me tell you, this did not make me a happy book dragon to see all this potential go right down the drain.

However, despite these flaws, the world building in this is what brought my rating up. This is because, even I have to admit Blake really did create such an interesting world – and very feminist based as well. I liked the idea of the religion, and the three separate classes and also the secrecy of the mainland. It lacked diversity that’s for sure, but nevertheless, it was still intriguing to read about the sister’s different worlds. I was unsure whether I was going to read the next book but that ending was unexpected and I can not deny I am interested in what happens in the next book! All and all I feel like this book would have been a better read if I was younger – around 14 would have been a good age – a light simple read. And like a reviewer said on good reads it felt more like a prequel than an actual book, the exciting bit being the last 25% – so hopefully it will be picked up and fleshed out in the next book.

-S O P H

Review: The Secret History

 

Author: Donna Tartt

Genre: Thriller/Contemporary

My Rating: 5 stars

GoodReads Rating: 4.07 ratings

Good Reads Synopsis: 

Under the influence of their charismatic classics professor, a group of clever, eccentric misfits at an elite New England college discover a way of thinking and living that is the world away from the humdrum existence of their contemporaries. But when they go beyond the boundaries of normal morality they slip gradually from obsession to corruption and betrayal, and at last – inexorably – into evil.


For a long time, I have been meaning to pick this book up. It started last summer when Alison recommended it to me and immediately the theme of the book – classics and dark characters had me intrigued. However, I got so caught up in other books that I did not have the chance to till the Christmas break to read it.

As soon as I cracked open this book, I knew from Tartt’s eloquent writing style and the way her words seem to drip with detail that I was in for a whirlwind romance with this book and to say that it satisfied me is an understatement. I think the book caught me in its snare from Tartt’s writing, as a huge sucker for detailed poetical styles, hers did not fail to please me. Each word is crafted so delicately with sentences that seem to have twinkled down from a memory creating a dreamlike haze over the book. The descriptions of the seasons passing by Richards window left me breathless and tranquillized. She is also quite a drifter Tartt, I noticed it with The Goldfinch, Richard could be talking about something and then four pages later you have moved onto something else that has nothing to do with what he was saying – which makes the story even more irresistible.

The Secret History is like the coming of age story from a different dimension, Tartt takes all the aspects of a student’s life and twists it brutally till the characters darkest desires and secrets are revealed raw and ugly for the reader to recoil at. She does this in a very clever way by contrasting it to our simpler world. One moment she may be describing them discussing murdering and conquering towns and then switch to how the gentle sunlight threw shadows onto Camilla’s face – ensuring that the reader is snared in a trap. A trap that is set up for us to fall for these twisted murders. Because of Tartt’s writing, I’m not really sure on how to focus on the aspects of the plot line – it was beautiful, painful and insane is all I can say. My most loving part of the story though is the continuous link to the ancient world. Being a low-key lover of before-ac-time it was enchanting to see how those ancient rulers ways of life still have effect on people – that our love for that time may indeed shape us differently. The elements of the bacchanal, the referrals to Homer and the conversations in Greek was enough to make my knees go weak but also made me sympathise with the characters more.

The characters, I believe, are what make up this story. Richard, our narrator, gave me serious Nick vibes from The Great Gatsby, someone on the outside always looking in, always being the moral compass of the story. He was a complex character, at first, he appeared to be a stumbling boy longing for what the others had but soon he too started to get darker and darker till I’m not sure whether I like him or dislike him as a character. I adored Francis, for some reason his character spoke out to me and I sympathised him a lot. The twins – ah the twins. I have a very soft spot for Charles, a character who at first was overshadowed by his friends but always polite and kind and then developed in part two (realistically) into this frantically scared boy who couldn’t seem to navigate his friends world anymore. Now Camilla was another story. She was my least favourite out of all of them. Something was too perfect too soft too off about her. I wasn’t really sure how I see her. Henry was just, words can’t describe it. I loved his character. I may not like him as a person but the way Tartt developed him was wonderful. He was a villain yearning to be a hero.

And Bunny was just a typical white man.

Overall, I thoroughly enjoyed this book, it whisked me off my feet and left my stumbling for more and questioning my everyday movements. I would highly recommend this to anyone – so if you get a chance add this to your TBR.

-S O P H I E

2.0.1.6/1.7 wrap up & goals

How on earth has another year gone into the abyss of history? Each year we are inching into the black hole called the future and the unknown – its enough to make ones mind spin and urge the whole world to be taken off the record for a while. Its strange viewing this year – in some aspects I see it whizzing past in a matter of fluttering wings but in other by god this year stretches on forever and forever. And excuse my language, what a shitty year it has been in aspects regarding the world. But ironically its been a pretty darn good year for myself. This time last year I was a squeaky fifteen year old who was not in a really good place, a years past and for once I have actually seen myself change almost entirely. Looking back to my past self and comparing her to me now is like staring at two different people. I don’t believe in a new year new me concept – because lets be real, I don’t think anyone can change themselves in a matter of hours but the idea of a fresh start is always appealing – are you really that same person you were last year? Or have you changed? Its quite interesting.

Anyway

Moving on from the sentimental thoughts on new years and myself, I thought I would do a little wrap up of this year – my favorite books and what i am looking forward to read next year!

1.17927395A Court of Mist and Fury by Sarah J Maas

Alrighty, despite realizing that SJM is not a particularity diverse writer, this book did really take the spotlight for me. It was so tense and enchanting and i loved
the characters in this series that it has to take the top place – especially since i wasn’t expecting anything that good after not really enjoying ACOTAR!!!

2. Crooked Kingdom by Leigh Burdugocrooked-kingdom-315

Oh boy guys this book was amazing – honestly one of the best books I’ve read in a while. Leigh perfect balance of plot/character driven story makes you want to eat this book again
and again and again. Not to mention she completely fooled me into believing everything will be alright. This book will kill you. Bring you back to life. And then kill you again.

3.The S9780140167771ecret History by Donna Tart

Having only just finished this book I am not adequate to write up a sum of emotions. Just classics. Characters. Henry. Charles. Writing . I am in love with this book and currently dead because of it.

4. Uprooted by Naomi Novik 9781447294146uprooted

This was a stunner of a book – fantasy fans if you haven’t read it READ IT NOW I BEG OF YOu. Dark forests, wizards, magic, man eating trees? What more can a girl ask for? Maybe a ticket to other worlds but you know, you can’t have everything….

5. And I Darken by Kristin White

27190613Now this is a box that kicks ass. Like honestly really and truly kicks ass. even after three months of reading it i am in awe of the story line and characters. Kristin is an automatic buy author now and i CAN NOT WAIT TO READ THE NEXT ONE.

 

 

Now moving onto books I want to read for next year:

  1. A Song of Achilles
  2. The Raven Boys
  3. Star Touched Queen
  4. The Midnight Star
  5. The Hate You Give
  6. The Princess Saves Herself in This One
  7. The Name of the Wind
  8. A Court of Wings and Ruin
  9. The Voohrs
  10. A Little Life
  11. Foxhole Court
  12. Before the Feast
  13. Gilded Cadge
  14. Our Dark Duet
  15. An Ember in the Ashes

And sooooooo manyyyyyyy moreeeee of course! I really really want to stop following not mainstream books – but less popular books and start to read a bit more then the general YA fantasy fiction. So if any of you have some book recommendations that no one really talks about. hit. me. up.

-S O P H