Book Review

Book Review: The House in the Cerulean Sea by T.J. Klune

Rating: ☆☆☆☆
Audience: Fantasy / Fiction
Length: 393 pages
Author: T.J. Klune
Publisher: Tor Books
Release Date: March 17th, 2020
Image & Other Reviews on: Goodreads

BOOK SUMMARY:

A magical island. A dangerous task. A burning secret.

Linus Baker leads a quiet, solitary life. At forty, he lives in a tiny house with a devious cat and his old records. As a Case Worker at the Department in Charge Of Magical Youth, he spends his days overseeing the well-being of children in government-sanctioned orphanages.

When Linus is unexpectedly summoned by Extremely Upper Management he’s given a curious and highly classified assignment: travel to Marsyas Island Orphanage, where six dangerous children reside: a gnome, a sprite, a wyvern, an unidentifiable green blob, a were-Pomeranian, and the Antichrist. Linus must set aside his fears and determine whether or not they’re likely to bring about the end of days.

But the children aren’t the only secret the island keeps. Their caretaker is the charming and enigmatic Arthur Parnassus, who will do anything to keep his wards safe. As Arthur and Linus grow closer, long-held secrets are exposed, and Linus must make a choice: destroy a home or watch the world burn.

An enchanting story, masterfully told, The House in the Cerulean Sea is about the profound experience of discovering an unlikely family in an unexpected place—and realizing that family is yours.

SO SWEET.

I’ve seen this book compared to a warm hug, and I truly see that analogy. This book is such a feel good read.

This cast is absolutely precious. Linus has some really relatable life sentiments and I thought it was really unique to a lot of books I’ve read that this was an older narrator. Throw him in with a group of children with unique abilities and I was smitten. I adored all of the children. Each was unique, made me smile and laugh, want to fiercely hug and protect, and cheer on that they would get the better future they deserved.

Cerulean Sea is a naturally slow read. It’s not fast paced and full of action. Instead it moves through the lives of all involved and leaves you with a vast amount of quotable moments. You could easily highlight half this book.

I loved the progression of the novel and how the story progressed with Linus. Getting to see him find happiness and love. Seeing the children get to branch out from their home. It was all so sweet!!

Overall audience notes:

  • Fiction / Fantasy
  • Language: very little
  • Romance: kisses

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Book Review

Book Review: The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue by V.E. Schwab

Rating: ☆☆☆☆ 1/2
Audience: Fantasy / Historical Fiction / Romance
Length: 489 pages
Author: V.E. Schwab
Publisher: Tor Books
Release Date: October 6th, 2020
Image & Other Reviews on: Goodreads

BOOK SUMMARY:

A Life No One Will Remember. A Story You Will Never Forget.

France, 1714: in a moment of desperation, a young woman makes a Faustian bargain to live forever and is cursed to be forgotten by everyone she meets.

Thus begins the extraordinary life of Addie LaRue, and a dazzling adventure that will play out across centuries and continents, across history and art, as a young woman learns how far she will go to leave her mark on the world.

But everything changes when, after nearly 300 years, Addie stumbles across a young man in a hidden bookstore and he remembers her name.

WORTH THE HYPE.

Without a doubt. If you’ve been on the fence about reading this one (like I was), give it a try.

I feel like this review will be hard to put into words because there’s so much here!! Holy cow, I wanted to highlight every other paragraph in this book. I loved the internal conflict and resolutions, the characters, the story and drama, how the further I went the more enamored and unable to put it down it became.

It does start off a little slow yes, but I found the more I read it settled in. This is a journey, more than the story itself, of Addie, Henry and Luc. Goodness, I can’t help it, I LOVED Luc. I really wish there was more to his background. What a complex character from the get-go. Henry was fantastic as well. He and Addie fit together like puzzle pieces and it was hard not to fall to pieces by the end. I adored Addie too. The resilience to go 300 years with the deal she made was unbelievable. These three working together and apart brought it home. This is a heavily character driven story. The wider plot isn’t as much there as it is about what these characters mean to each other.

Addie had absolutely beautiful writing. It draws you in immediately. Filled with so many moments that will pull at every heart string. I was feeling every little thing by the time those last few chapters rolled around. It’s an interesting conclusion that left me with some questions, but also satisfied. I closed the book knowing just how magnificent of a story I’d finished.

Overall audience notes:

  • Fantasy / Historical Fiction / Romance
  • Language: a little throughout
  • Romance: kisses / make-outs; a few closed door & a few little detailed open door
  • Trigger/Content Warnings: attempted assault, abuse, loss of a loved one, substance abuse, depression, suicidal ideation, attempted suicide

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Book Review

Book Review: Oathbringer (The Stormlight Archive #3) by Brandon Sanderson

Rating: ☆☆☆☆☆
Audience: Epic fantasy
Length: 1,248 pages
Author: Brandon Sanderson
Publisher: Tor Books
Release Date: November 14th, 2017
Image & Other Reviews on: Goodreads

BOOK SUMMARY:

In Oathbringer, the third volume of the New York Times bestselling Stormlight Archive, humanity faces a new Desolation with the return of the Voidbringers, a foe with numbers as great as their thirst for vengeance.

Dalinar Kholin’s Alethi armies won a fleeting victory at a terrible cost: The enemy Parshendi summoned the violent Everstorm, which now sweeps the world with destruction, and in its passing awakens the once peaceful and subservient parshmen to the horror of their millennia-long enslavement by humans. While on a desperate flight to warn his family of the threat, Kaladin Stormblessed must come to grips with the fact that the newly kindled anger of the parshmen may be wholly justified.

Nestled in the mountains high above the storms, in the tower city of Urithiru, Shallan Davar investigates the wonders of the ancient stronghold of the Knights Radiant and unearths dark secrets lurking in its depths. And Dalinar realizes that his holy mission to unite his homeland of Alethkar was too narrow in scope. Unless all the nations of Roshar can put aside Dalinar’s blood-soaked past and stand together–and unless Dalinar himself can confront that past–even the restoration of the Knights Radiant will not prevent the end of civilization.

STUNNING.

Yet again. I’m sitting here wondering how I read 1,200+ pages and never felt bored. THAT is the wondering world of Brandon Sanderson and his ability to create these magnificent tales where I don’t even care how big the book is, I’m picking it up stat.

But also, how do you even put into words a review for a book so long? Just know, I really do love these and hope if you’ve been considering reading them you will. Take a chance on the big books! The audio book is the best too. I love the narration, the voices, the fact I can easily listen at a faster speed. All good things.

Some of my favorite pieces in Sanderson books are the later stages when bombs start being dropped. When the world literally gets turned upside down and you aren’t sure what you read is making any sense because it’s completely changed the entire book. Oh how I love these moments. It’s hard to even guess what they will be so enjoy the ride and know you’ll never know who dies, who lives and if the world will actually survive.

The massive world built with intense magic systems that are intricate yet you can understand everything. I feel apart of the political landscape, the characters lives and the fate of the world.

I could talk forever about all of these characters. How I love them so. All of them have strengths, weaknesses, great moments, and moments where you want to shake them. I love how human they really are. There’s emotion and turmoil that leads their decisions and connections. Nothing is laid out in black and white. In this installment I got to see Dalinar’s background and at last got all the answers and more. I love that each book is dedicated to an in-depth look at a character. I’m curious who book four will be about!

Overall audience notes:

  • Epic/high fantasy
  • Language: none
  • Romance: some kisses
  • Violence: battles, swords, magic; intense and violent

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Book Review

Book Review: Shadows of Self (Mistborn: The Alloy Era #5) by Brandon Sanderson

Rating: ☆☆☆☆☆  
Audience: Fantasy
Length: 383 pages
Author: Brandon Sanderson
Publisher: Tor Books
Release Date: October 6th, 2015
Image & Other Reviews on: Goodreads

BOOK SUMMARY:

Shadows of Self shows Mistborn’s society evolving as technology and magic mix, the economy grows, democracy contends with corruption, and religion becomes a growing cultural force, with four faiths competing for converts.

This bustling, optimistic, but still shaky society now faces its first instance of terrorism, crimes intended to stir up labor strife and religious conflict. Wax and Wayne, assisted by the lovely, brilliant Marasi, must unravel the conspiracy before civil strife stops Scadrial’s progress in its tracks.

Shadows of Self will give fans of The Alloy of Law everything they’ve been hoping for and, this being a Brandon Sanderson book, more, much more.

TALK ABOUT HOLY PLOT TWIST.

I’m still shook. Story: my husband and I have been listening to this together-ish (both when we can but not actually at the same time). He finished the day before I did when I had ONE hour left. Well, the biggest drop in the entire came during that hour and I literally ran out of my bedroom shouting WHAT?!?!? **and more spoiler-ish content I will not say here**. Sanderson is trying to break my heart, I can feel it.

Any who, this was another great installment of his shorter books. I loved listening to it. Michael Kramer is such a great narrator and does all of the voices SO FLIPPIN’ WELL. He’s read all 6 Sanderson audiobooks I’ve listened to so far and it’s been fantastic.

The dynamics between Wax, Wayne, and Marasi are THE BEST. They are a great team with different strengths that pick each other up when their weaknesses show. I love the banter, the love they have for one another and just everything. This is a team I want to be on.

There’s still a Western vibe to this with the gun-slinging vibes. And I’m still into it. I thought I might waver, but the way Sanderson crafts a story has continually left me breathless. I’m seriously trying to work my way through all of his books. WHY DID I WAIT SO LONG TO DO THIS.

These books are much shorter and easier to follow. The amount of twists and story lines that play in from the original trilogy amazes me though. Even if this is a spin-off that I know some people aren’t a fan of, it doesn’t bother me in the slightest. I love seeing old characters, hearing about the original crew, and learning how their choices have shaped this newer world.

SOMEONE GIVE ME A HAPPY ENDING PLEASE?!

Overall audience notes:

  • Fantasy / Sci-Fi
  • Language: none
  • Romance: none
  • Violence: guns, murder, knives, swords, dueling canes; occasionally a bit bloody

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