Crier’s War — Book Review

criers war


  Author:     Nina Varela
   Genre:    YA/Sci-Fi
   Pages:    429
   Format:   OwlCrate Hardcover
After the War of Kinds ravaged the kingdom of Rabu, the Automae, designed to be the playthings of royals, usurped their owners’ estates and bent the human race to their will.

Now Ayla, a human servant rising in the ranks at the House of the Sovereign, dreams of avenging her family’s death…by killing the sovereign’s daughter, Lady Crier.

Crier was Made to be beautiful, flawless, and to carry on her father’s legacy. But that was before her betrothal to the enigmatic Scyre Kinok, before she discovered her father isn’t the benevolent king she once admired, and most importantly, before she met Ayla.

Now, with growing human unrest across the land, pressures from a foreign queen, and an evil new leader on the rise, Crier and Ayla find there may be only one path to love: war.
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It Sounded Better In My Head — Book Review

it sounded better in my head

  Author:     Nina Kenwood
   Genre:    YA/Contemporary Romance
   Pages:    272
   Format:   e-Arc
When her parents announce their impending divorce, Natalie can’t understand why no one is fighting, or at least mildly upset. Then Zach and Lucy, her two best friends, hook up, leaving her feeling slightly miffed and decidedly awkward. She’d always imagined she would end up with Zach one day―in the version of her life that played out like a TV show, with just the right amount of banter, pining, and meaningful looks. Now everything has changed, and nothing is quite making sense. Until an unexpected romance comes along and shakes things up even further.

Thanks to NetGalley and the publisher, I received an eArc of this book in exchange for a honest review.

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There Will Come a Darkness — Book Review

  Author:     Katy Rose Pool
   Genre:    YA/Fantasy
   Pages:    496
   Format:   hardback
The Age of Darkness approaches.
Five lives stand in its way.
Who will stop it… or unleash it?

For generations, the Seven Prophets guided humanity. Using their visions of the future, they ended wars and united nations―until the day, one hundred years ago, when the Prophets disappeared.

All they left behind was one final, secret prophecy, foretelling an Age of Darkness and the birth of a new Prophet who could be the world’s salvation . . . or the cause of its destruction. As chaos takes hold, five souls are set on a collision course:

A prince exiled from his kingdom.
A ruthless killer known as the Pale Hand.
A once-faithful leader torn between his duty and his heart.
A reckless gambler with the power to find anything or anyone.
And a dying girl on the verge of giving up.

One of them―or all of them―could break the world. Will they be savior or destroyer?

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The Merciful Crow — Book Review


  Author:     Margaret Owen
   Genre:    YA/Fantasy
   Pages:    384
   Format:   hardback
A future chieftain.

Fie abides by one rule: look after your own. Her Crow caste of undertakers and mercy-killers takes more abuse than coin, but when they’re called to collect royal dead, she’s hoping they’ll find the payout of a lifetime.

A fugitive prince.

When Crown Prince Jasimir turns out to have faked his death, Fie’s ready to cut her losses—and perhaps his throat. But he offers a wager that she can’t refuse: protect him from a ruthless queen, and he’ll protect the Crows when he reigns.

A too-cunning bodyguard.

Hawk warrior Tavin has always put Jas’s life before his, magically assuming the prince’s appearance and shadowing his every step. But what happens when Tavin begins to want something to call his own?


Fie, Tavin and Jas are thrown together because of an unexpected situation. Bound by an oath they most protect each other or face the worst of things. They struggle because they don’t get along; different castes, different people. Fie wants to prove herself to Pa, and the two boys just want to succeed. But will they be able to? Forced out of their comfort zones they must learn to adapt — and trust.

Holy smokes this book! I honestly cannot say how much I enjoyed it! I thought it was superb! I was in love with this book from beginning to end. There is nothing else like it – such a lovely mix of adventure, daring, romance and amazing plot. The characters were amazing too – I didn’t find any of them too irritating. I will be singing this book’s praises for a long time to come and suffering until the next book comes out. This book deserves all the applause because I was totally and utterly infatuated. I know I keep saying it, but I can’t even think of starting another book now.

As the only caste untouched by the plague, the Merciful Crows were duty-bound to answer every summons.

So, why did I love the book so much? The plot was good and it was interesting. The whole concept of it was amazing, how we start at point a and then get to point b. This book slowly ramps up the action and stakes the further and further you get into the book and it works. Owen does it brilliantly too, because as she raises the stakes and tensions she makes you fall in love with the characters at the same time, and you are absolutely hoping she doesn’t kill any of them off.

Fie decided she liked the cat. Anything happy to leave the royal palace had good taste.

Fie was definitely my favorite. She was absolutely fierce and delightful. She made me smile and laugh and I just wanted to hug her because she was so precious. Precious but fierce. And I loved her for it. I loved that she was a strong character, but that she had flaws and hopes and dreams. She was vulnerable too. I loved that. I loved absolutely everything about Fie. She is one of my favorite characters now. Easily. I also really appreciated how her relationships with the people around her were depicted. It made for some really interesting reading.

Fie didn’t intend to punch the boy, but she did all the same.

I also adore Tavin. I think he’s a humorous character, but he also has a seriousness to him as well. It makes him a great foil for Fie. Especially for banter. And that is all I will say on that subject. Jas as his best friend too was a cool relationship and I would love for it to be explored further in the next book. I think there is so much that Owen can do with it.

The rest of the crows too, I would love to see more on them! They are part of the amazing world building that was created. There was no big info dump, instead it was parceled out to you in easy to read chunks. It was woven seamless into the narrative.

And finally the writing was lovely. I really got into it and found that it flowed beautifully. There is nothing more I love than good prose, and this book had that in abundance.

So to recap: this book was a stunning and lovely read and I can’t wait to read the next one!

Ruthless Gods — Book Review

I  received this ARC from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

Author:     Emily Duncan
Genre:    YA/Fantasy/Dark Fantasy/Horror
Pages:    432
Format:   E-ARC


Darkness never works alone…

Nadya doesn’t trust her magic anymore. Serefin is fighting off a voice in his head that doesn’t belong to him. Malachiasz is at war with who–and what–he’s become.

As their group is continually torn apart, the girl, the prince, and the monster find their fates irrevocably intertwined. They’re pieces on a board, being orchestrated by someone… or something. The voices that Serefin hears in the darkness, the ones that Nadya believes are her gods, the ones that Malachiasz is desperate to meet—those voices want a stake in the world, and they refuse to stay quiet any longer.

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Gideon the Ninth

Gideon the Ninth book

  Author:     Tamsyn Muir
   Genre:    YA/Sci-Fi/Fantasy
   Pages:    448
   Format:   hardback

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The Babysitter’s Coven

  Author:     Kate Williams
  Genre:    YA/paranormal
  Pages:    368
  Format:   hardcover

Description: Seventeen-year-old Esme Pearl has a babysitters club. She knows it’s kinda lame, but what else is she supposed to do? Get a job? Gross. Besides, Esme likes babysitting, and she’s good at it. And lately Esme needs all the cash she can get, because it seems like destruction follows her wherever she goes. Let’s just say she owes some people a new tree.

Enter Cassandra Heaven. She’s Instagram-model hot, dresses like she found her clothes in a dumpster, and has a rebellious streak as gnarly as the cafeteria food. So why is Cassandra willing to do anything, even take on a potty-training two-year-old, to join Esme’s babysitters club?

The answer lies in a mysterious note Cassandra’s mother left her: “Find the babysitters. Love, Mom.”

Turns out, Esme and Cassandra have more in common than they think, and they’re about to discover what being a babysitter really means: a heroic lineage of superpowers, magic rituals, and saving the innocent from seriously terrifying evil. And all before the parents get home.  

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Wayward Son


  Author:     Rainbow Rowell
  Genre:    YA/Fantasy
  Pages:    368
  Format:   hardcover

Description: The story is supposed to be over.

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The Night Country

Thanks to NetGalley and the publisher, I received an eArc of this book in exchange for a honest review.


  Author:     Melissa Albert
   Genre:    YA/Fantasy
   Pages:    352
   Format:   E-Arc


Description: In The Night Country, Alice Proserpine dives back into a menacing, mesmerizing world of dark fairy tales and hidden doors. Follow her and Ellery Finch as they learn The Hazel Wood was just the beginning, and that worlds die not with a whimper, but a bang.

With Finch’s help, Alice escaped the Hinterland and her reclusive grandmother’s dark legacy. Now she and the rest of the dregs of the fairy tale world have washed up in New York City, where Alice is trying to make a new, unmagical life. But something is stalking the Hinterland’s survivors―and she suspects their deaths may have a darker purpose. Meanwhile, in the winking out world of the Hinterland, Finch seeks his own adventure, and―if he can find it―a way back home…


The Hazel Wood was an amazing book. It was laden in atmosphere and surprise. I am happy to say The Night Country is the same way, but a bit different. Instead of taking place mostly in The Hinterlands it took place in our world.  It was an engaging story once more and totally worth the wait. 

This book was essentially told in two POVS. Mostly from Alice’s but some from Finch’s as well. Finch of course is not in our world. He is having his own adventures. He meets other people he goes on adventures with and yet he also misses ice and his home. Alice is busy trying to adjust to her new life, a d it is very interesting. Alice is a unique character. She’s strong but also weak and she doesn’t really know what she wants.  I like Alice as a character.  I think she’s great because she is made of contradictions.  It was enjoyable being back with Alice.  

There are a few other characters like Sophia, and Daphne that we meet in this book along with Ella. They all have roles to play and Alice’s interactions with them are all different. This book didn’t boast a huge cast of characters but it worked for the few that it did have. 

This book was slow paced. There are pieces of action sporadically in the book, but overall the main focus is on Alice and her feelings. It’s as if she’s on a journey of self discovery in between trying to figure out who is murdering stories. Alice’s struggle with her place, who she is and its relation to the murders makes for a fascinating plot. You’re never sure what is true and what isn’t, because they are stories after all. There is something to be said for creating a plot that has a dual purpose. It was well done and I liked it. 

 I think like the first this book is going to be hit and miss for some people. Some are going to really love it and for others it’s going to bother them. Partially the writing style I think.  

The writing style is incredibly descriptive and inner focused at parts. This can make it incredibly slow. I will admit at some parts I started to zone out because I was having trouble focusing. But I read it in pieces and it helped. The writing is good, don’t get me wrong. It evokes atmosphere and feelings. I enjoyed it for that reason.  

Overall it was a great story and I really liked it.  I think Albert is a fantastic storyteller who always draws me in.  A really fantastic story all around.  I think there is something to be said for doing a totally new riff off fairy tales. I am so excited to see what Albert has in store for us next. 

The Beautiful

Renée Ahdieh
Young Adult/fantasy/supernatural

In 1872, New Orleans is a city ruled by the dead. But to seventeen-year-old Celine Rousseau, New Orleans provides her a refuge after she’s forced to flee her life as a dressmaker in Paris. Taken in by the sisters of the Ursuline convent along with six other girls, Celine quickly becomes enamored with the vibrant city from the music to the food to the soirées and—especially—to the danger. She soon becomes embroiled in the city’s glitzy underworld, known as La Cour des Lions, after catching the eye of the group’s leader, the enigmatic Sébastien Saint Germain. When the body of one of the girls from the convent is found in the lair of La Cour des Lions, Celine battles her attraction to him and suspicions about Sébastien’s guilt along with the shame of her own horrible secret.

When more bodies are discovered, each crime more gruesome than the last, Celine and New Orleans become gripped by the terror of a serial killer on the loose—one Celine is sure has set her in his sights . . . and who may even be the young man who has stolen her heart. As the murders continue to go unsolved, Celine takes matters into her own hands and soon uncovers something even more shocking: an age-old feud from the darkest creatures of the underworld reveals a truth about Celine she always suspected simmered just beneath the surface.

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