Book Review

Book Review: Bone Crier’s Moon (Bone Grace #1) by Kathryn Purdie

Rating: ☆☆☆
Audience: YA Fantasy
Length: 480 pages
Author: Kathryn Purdie
Publisher: Katherine Tegen Books
Release Date: March 3rd, 2020
Image & Other Reviews on: Goodreads

BOOK SUMMARY:

Bone ​Criers have a sacred duty. They alone can keep the dead from preying on the living. But their power to ferry the spirits of the dead into goddess Elara’s Night Heavens or Tyrus’s Underworld comes from sacrifice. The gods demand a promise of dedication. And that promise comes at the cost of the Bone Criers’ one true love.

Ailesse has been prepared since birth to become the matriarch of the Bone Criers, a mysterious famille of women who use strengths drawn from animal bones to ferry dead souls. But first she must complete her rite of passage and kill the boy she’s also destined to love.

Bastien’s father was slain by a Bone Crier and he’s been seeking revenge ever since. Yet when he finally captures one, his vengeance will have to wait. Ailesse’s ritual has begun and now their fates are entwined—in life and in death.

Sabine has never had the stomach for the Bone Criers’ work. But when her best friend Ailesse is taken captive, Sabine will do whatever it takes to save her, even if it means defying their traditions—and their matriarch—to break the bond between Ailesse and Bastien. Before they all die.

STARTED STRONG.

Fighting a tiger shark? Yeah, that’s a strong start.

I liked where things were going and how it was set-up. I was imagining a lot wider plot that would connect back into the characters..but alas, that was not the case. Everything took place in a small city, and it felt that way. There was this reiteration about a flute that went on for 450 pages. That’s mostly what I gathered from this.

Multiple POVs are my jam, and I liked having them here. I did find myself confused at times with who was speaking if I had to stop in the middle of a chapter. Their own voices didn’t resonate enough from the page to really help me grasp the character.

What was the thing with the owl?! I’m still confused, and have too many questions. This mythical owl kept showing up to further the plot by being the answer the characters needed. It was a cop-out. I’m guessing the owl plays a bigger role in book two? Maybe? I don’t know.

This is a quick read, and definitely fits in the young adult fantasy category. Besides struggling with the POVs, I did like the writing style because of it’s pace and not drawn out sentiments.

Ooooo, I haven’t even mentioned my true downfall with this one, the insta-love. Oh goodness, the instant love. We literally changed paragraphs and Bastien went from wanting to stab, to wanting to kiss Ailesse. Does not work for me.

Overall audience notes:

  • Young adult fantasy
  • Language: none
  • Romance: kiss
  • Violence: swords/knives, physical altercations, explosions

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Book Review

Book Review: Majesty (American Royals #2) by Katharine McGee

Rating: ☆☆☆ 1/2
Audience: YA Dystopian / Contemporary
Length: 370 pages
Author: Katharine McGee
Publisher: Random House Books for Young Readers
Release Date: September 1st, 2020
Image & Other Reviews on: Goodreads

BOOK SUMMARY:

Is America ready for its first queen?

Power is intoxicating. Like first love, it can leave you breathless. Princess Beatrice was born with it. Princess Samantha was born with less. Some, like Nina Gonzalez, are pulled into it. And a few will claw their way in. Ahem, we’re looking at you Daphne Deighton.

As America adjusts to the idea of a queen on the throne, Beatrice grapples with everything she lost when she gained the ultimate crown. Samantha is busy living up to her “party princess” persona…and maybe adding a party prince by her side. Nina is trying to avoid the palace–and Prince Jefferson–at all costs. And a dangerous secret threatens to undo all of Daphne’s carefully laid “marry Prince Jefferson” plans.

A new reign has begun.

THIRD BOOK PLEASE?

That’s what I need after seeing how this one ended. Book three. THERE NEEDS TO BE MORE.

I thought this was a good follow-up to American Royals. The drama is wild as ever and so many things continually happen that keep you turning pages. Not to mention, I love the shorter chapters and quick pace.

I adored Beatrice’s story line. Without a doubt the best story in here. Beatrice came into her own as a queen. I loved that she got to say a proper good-bye to those who deserved it and made a true love connection with Teddy. They were precious and I absolutely ship them. Both of them together are such a match. I would have loved a longer book just to get more of their (and other’s) relationships.

Daphne Deighton. I can’t even talk about her. I hated the way her story ended. I got the vibe of it and why it was written that way, but it still screwed over too many people and I just want her to get her due. She just drags down this book.

Sam’s story was positive and I’m grateful for her character arc because whoa, I was struggling with her attitude. I love that she really grew up and fought for what she wanted. Sam worked things out well and I love her relationship with Marhsall.

Nina’s POV fell by the wayside here. She kinda fit into everything, kinda didn’t. I did like the way things ended up for her and that she took time to figure out what she wanted before making a decision. I think if there’s more to the story we’ll get even better insight for Nina.

This installment was shorter than the first when I think it needed to be longer. There was good stuff here, just needed some longer stories to really connect with everything rather than flying by.

Overall audience notes:

  • Young adult dystopia / contemporary
  • Language: some light
  • Romance: kisses / make-outs; a closed door scene
  • Content warnings: grief from losing a parent

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Book Review

Book Review: Silent Kingdom (Silent Kingdom #1) by Rachel L. Schade

Rating: ☆☆☆
Audience: YA Fantasy
Length: 247 pages
Author: Rachel L. Schade
Publisher: Dragon Shadow Publishing
Release Date: September 29th, 2018
Image & Other Reviews on: Goodreads

BOOK SUMMARY:

Chosen by truth. Marked for death. Halia must choose to save her kingdom, or let it fall.

Misroth’s king has died, and the entire kingdom is in mourning—or so it seems. After her father is crowned regent in his brother’s stead, Princess Halia discovers a terrible truth that could end her life. But when she flees to live in hiding, she discovers that the Royal Guard are not all she has to fear. Dark creatures stalk her, reports of oppression and war reach her ears, and her burden to protect her kingdom—at any cost—will not be silenced.

SLOW START, GOOD END.

Another Kindle Unlimited find!

I liked where things were initially going (because wow what a intense intro) but it stalled a bit with her younger age + not much going on.

Once Halia was older things started to pick up. I liked the idea of an exiled princess finding her way back home to right the wrongs so grievously done. What I struggled with was her visions. I have a hard time with any character having visions in a book. It takes me out of the story and makes it hard to get back in. Halia had multiple almost every chapter which really through off the pacing.

I adored her cute little soon to be friends to lovers moment. I would have loved even more because I thought Halia and Avrik’s friendship was precious and sweet.

Halia never intended to be a heroine, and I thought her character growth was well accomplished. It’d be curious to see how the rest of the series continues with the pawns at play. I liked the last quarter of the book the most because things really started HAPPENING. It was an incredible slow build to get there.

Overall audience notes:

  • Young adult fantasy
  • Language: none
  • Romance: none
  • Violence: murder, poison, swords, physical, creature attacks, executions; not overly bloody/gory

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Book Review

Book Review: Blood & Honey (Serpent & Dove #2) by Shelby Mahurin

Rating: ☆☆☆☆ 1/2
Audience: YA Fantasy + Romance
Length: 528 pages
Author: Shelby Mahurin
Publisher: HarperTeen
Release Date: September 1st, 2020
Image & Other Reviews on: Goodreads

BOOK SUMMARY:

After narrowly escaping death at the hands of the Dames Blanches, Lou, Reid, Coco, and Ansel are on the run from coven, kingdom, and church—fugitives with nowhere to hide.

To elude the scores of witches and throngs of chasseurs at their heels, Lou and Reid need allies. Strong ones. But protection comes at a price, and the group is forced to embark on separate quests to build their forces. As Lou and Reid try to close the widening rift between them, the dastardly Morgane baits them in a lethal game of cat and mouse that threatens to destroy something worth more than any coven.

The hotly anticipated sequel to the New York Times and IndieBound bestseller Serpent & Dove—packed with even steamier romance and darker magic—is perfect for fans of Sarah J. Maas.

WHERE’S THE LOVE?

Wow did this characters go through the ringer this round.

This was a great sequel! Though, it may have ripped my heart out. It’s fine. Everything’s fine.

RIGHT?

We got dropped right back in where we left off from the first one. And thankfully there’s plenty of nice segues to remember details of what happened in Serpent & Dove. The action was picked up exponentially this round. I found the pace pretty quick and turning every page with anticipation of what creature in the woods was going to pop up next. Plenty of violence and shock moments that really left me reeling.

This was really missing some romance. From the beginning their was a reasonable amount of angst between Lou and Reid but it needed MORE MORE MORE. What I did like is that the conflict between them wasn’t silly drama or a major lack of communication. Both of them were struggling to grasp and cope with the changes being thrown wildly at them. As time progressed and Lou and Reid realized their mistakes they were able to come together, so I liked the general development of their relationship. I also love these guy separately. Such clear opposites that play so well off of each other and in their own segments.

All of these characters really have my love (and when necessary, ABSOLUTE LOATHING). Even those on the side are incredibly well developed, and we get enough back story on them to connect emotionally, but not overrun the story itself. I loved learning about more of the creatures (witches, werewolves, and other mythical beings oh my!) and how they fit into the world Mahurin has built.

I felt a string of emotions and easily devoured this quickly. Talk about an ending that makes you absolutely flip out and I will be [yet again] anxiously awaiting the finale for this trilogy.

Overall audience notes:

  • Young adult fantasy + romance
  • Language: some
  • Romance: kisses / heated make-outs; some almost scenes and a mild detailed scene
  • Violence: bloody and gory; murder, swords, arrows, physical altercations, animal attacks, kidnapping

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