Monday, 26 December 2016

The Boy Who Killed Grant Parker

Presenting The Boy Who Killed Grant Parker by Kat Spears.

Here is the summary of the book:

Luke Grayson's life might as well be over when he's forced to go live in rural Tennessee with his Baptist pastor father. His reputation as a troublemaker has followed him there, and as an outsider, Luke is automatically under suspicion by everyone from the principal at his new school to the local police chief. His social life is no better. The new kid in town is an easy target for Grant Parker, the local golden boy with a violent streak who has the entire community of Ashland under his thumb.

But things go topsy-turvy when a freak accident removes Grant from the top of the social pyramid, replacing him with Luke. This fish out of water has suddenly gone from social outcast to hero in a matter of twenty-four hours. For the students who have lived in fear of Grant all their lives, this is a welcome change. But Luke’s new found fame comes with a price. Nobody knows the truth about what really happened to Grant Parker except for Luke, and the longer he keeps living the lie, the more like Grant Parker he becomes.


You tend to already form your opinion whenever you read the title of a book and read its synopsis that, you don't think even for a moment that the book might not be what you want it to be..... And that is what I felt as I finished the book...... 'The Boy Who killed Grant Parker' felt formulaic and rather tried and done with for me to really appreciate Kat Spears' narrative. For a book with such an explosive title like that the plot felt rather quiet to me.

Luke Grayson is for lack of a better word. A normal teenager. The preacher's son. And he is a troublemaker to top it off. Lady Luck definitely doesn't seem to be favoring him these days. But I liked him in the first half of the book. He is the underdog. Going to extremes to be different than what being the preacher's son entails. He is sarcastic. A little bit weird with a good dosage of snark. 

Now Deliah I liked very much. She was this strange and very opinionated girl who Luke seems to banter with every chance he gets. They never really get along but she is also the only one who put up with him.... If only her character was treated better..... Really she was his only friend after the 'incident' and she just got shoved in the corner for the conventional plot to play out. Again I say - I did not like it. 

The incident as I dubbed it changed everything about the story into a direction I really did not like at all. Grant Parker was a bully and Luke stood up to him. It is fairly cliche what comes next but everything goes downhill for the plot after this. Where the first half felt something good and different the latter just the old overdone high school drama. 

Luke's character also became unrecognizable from what we saw before. Bland and letting others decide for him. Really I am trying to not reveal anything but the disappointment is too much.... Hence it gets 2 stars less.

"Familiar premise of high school hierarchy and a tried and done with plot. An Okay read just not what I expected"

Genre :     Young Adult, Contemporary, Romance

Publisher: St. Martin's Griffin

Release Date: 13th September, 2016

My Copy: publisher & netgalley

Rate:             3/5 (Liked It)

Buy:         Amazon | Book Depository 

Friday, 18 November 2016

Ash & Bramble #2 Rose & Thorn

Presenting Ash & Bramble #2 Rose & Thorn by Sarah Prineas.

Here is the summary of the book:

A spindle. A beautiful girl. A century-long slumber.

There is a story that longs to be told. It searches for its heroine, its prince, and the magic it needs to come alive. It will stop at nothing for its happily ever after.

One girl in search of answers. Two powerful forces at war. Three curses braided together.

After the spell protecting her is destroyed, Rose seeks safety in the world outside the valley she has called home. She has been kept hidden all her life to delay the three curses she was born with, curses that will put her into her own fairy tale and have drastic consequences if they take effect. Accompanied by Griff, the handsome and mysterious Watcher, and Quirk, his witty and warmhearted partner, Rose tries to escape from the ties that bind her to her story. But will the path they take lead them to that freedom, or will it bring them straight to the destiny they are trying to avoid?


'Story' wants to be told. 'Story' needs to be told. And 'Story' is devious enough to gain what it wants the most, no matter the consequences. Pen and Shoe may have dealt a big blow to 'Story's' reign in Ash & Bramble.... But it's not over yet. 'Story' always finds a way, even if it has to wait for its turn. 

And so it begins. Years later in 'Rose and Thorn'. With new players for 'Story' to play with - Rose and Griff. And a new Godmother to do its bidding. This time it is the story of 'Sleeping Beauty' that gets played and author Sarah Prineas does a fabulous job of seamlessly integration of an age old classic, in her own way. What felt missing with 'Ash & Bramble' can be seen in 'Rose & Thorn'.

Rose is the 'Beauty' of the tale. Cursed by 'Story' when she was a wee babe. She was stolen way by the then older Pen and raised by Shoe, away from prying eyes. Having never been to the outside world, Rose grows to be a kind, playful and gentle girl if not slightly naive. Thus, when circumstances force her to leave the safety bubble. She sees that stories and reality are too different and she must find that inner strength for what is coming for her.

Griff on the other is different. Raised in an atmosphere where even the word Story gets you punished. Griff had for most parts followed a strict rule adherent life. A loveless life. A gray life. Where his routine duties are much more important than anything else. Of course all else changes when Rose comes barreling into his life. He knows she has been cursed and must be cleansed but he also knows that she didn't ask for any of this. So strives to help her with all he can. It also doesn't hurt that he is attracted to her. 

Griff on the whole was the best. Strong and silent. He can definitely be moody. But he had the heart of gold. 'Rose & Thorn' on the whole felt much more darker than 'Ash & Bramble' was and I definitely appreciate it all the more for that. There is a darkness to this plot achieved perfectly because of the elements at play and the characters, the well timed twist & turns fabulously do that. The gorgeous cover is of course an incentive enough to warrant us reading it. I will of course want to read the next book when it releases.

"An enticing tale that will have you salivating for more"

Genre :     Young Adult, Fairytale re-telling, Romance

Publisher: HarperTeen

Release Date: 18th September, 2016

My Copy: publisher & edelweiss

Rate:             4/5 (Really Liked It)

Other Books by the Author(review links):
         #1 Ash & Bramble

Buy:         Amazon | Book Depository 

Monday, 14 November 2016

Fear Street Relaunch #5 The Dead Boyfriend

Presenting Fear Street Relaunch #5 The Dead Boyfriend by R.L. Stine.

Here is the summary of the book:

R.L. Stine's Fear Street series is back, and in The Dead Boyfriend, he tells the frightening tale of teenage love - and how it can go terribly, murderously wrong.

Caitlin has never had a real boyfriend before. When she starts seeing Colin, she throws herself into the relationship with fervor. She ignores her friends who warn her that Colin may be a phony and that she is taking the whole thing too seriously. Caitlin is smitten. She doesn't care if she loses her friends. All she wants is Colin. When Caitlin approaches Colin with another girl, she completely loses it. She snaps. Everything goes red. When she comes back to her senses, she realizes that Colin is dead - and she has killed him.

But if Colin is dead, how is he staring at her across a crowded party?

Terrifying from the first page to the last, The Dead Boyfriend is a heart-racing young adult novel from the master of teen screams himself.


Creepy, definitely but amazing? Definitely Not!

Why do I do this to myself? R.L. Stine's books would have appealed more to me if I was younger. Fear Street strikes again and The Dead Boyfriend may just be the most cliche of all the cheesy teen thrillers I ever saw.

Again the story was too predictable and I started to get a bit annoyed because the characters and the situation felt ridiculous. Also they make this mistake in the synopsis again.... maybe i noticed because i read the review copy but the boyfriend is not Colin ..... but Blade. Although I will say this though .... that surprising twist and reveal at the end was a nice touch and maybe in a sense destroyed what the plot builds up to ..... but nice touch there.

But truly, this series will appeal more to a younger generation.

"Fear Street and deadly shenanigans"

Genre :     Young Adult, Horror, Paranormal

Publisher: St. Martin's Griffin

Release Date: 27th September, 2016

My Copy: publisher & netgalley

Rate:             2/5 (It was Ok)

Other Books in the Series:
            Review Links 

Buy:           Amazon | Book Depository

Saturday, 5 November 2016

Disruption #1 Disruption

Presenting Disruption #1 Disruption by Jessica Shirvington.

Here is the summary of the book:

The heart-stopping first chapter in bestselling author Jessica Shirvington's Disruption series.

What if a microchip could identify your perfect match?

What if it could be used against you and the ones you love?

Eight years ago, Mercer Corporation's M-Bands became mandatory. An evolution of the smartphone, the bracelets promised an easier life. Instead, they have come to control it.

Two years ago, Maggie Stevens watched helplessly as one of the people she loved most was taken from her, shattering her world as she knew it. Now, Maggie is ready. And Quentin Mercer - heir to the M-Corp empire - has become key to Maggie's plan.

But as the pieces of her dangerous design fall into place, could Quentin's involvement destroy everything she's fought for?

In a world full of broken promises, the ones Maggie must keep could be the most heartbreaking.


Somehow this book just didn't work for me..... There now you all must be thinking that something's wrong with me because how could I not like a Jessica Shirvington book but hold your horses people.... I meant it was OK ..... just nothing spectacular ...... as I was expecting it to be. Of course it was action packed and fast paced ..... but it just didn't wow me with its subject matter like I would from a Dystopia. 

Because lets face it. This subject matter had been done before, most notably is the one I remember recently reading Free to Fall by Lauren Miller (which was just amazing). A new technology in a future era that simplifies your life and dictates how you interact with people at a pheromone level ..... okay this last part might be new but other than that it just didn't draw me in. The world building also felt lacking. It just tells us of the Phera-tech and their specs and expect us to understand the initial info-dump. It also never explains how Maggie performs her impossible raids but just the help from Gus. The storyline is about a brutal future so you would expect to read about some of the shady things Maggie had to do to get her needs but it never touches on those aspects at all.

Also Maggie and Quentin as protagonists just didn't click. I love a flawed character just like any other bibliophile out there. So she had a hard life and did a lot of bad things to people to find out what happened to her father. But her attitude and how she started to feel burdened with guilt..... well human beings aren't perfect but this one just annoyed me with her monologues. She may have targeted Quentin at first to use him to get her father out of M-corp but no surprises there .... starts to like him. 

Quentin was your cliche boy-toy but he was different somehow ..... going to great lengths to find out the truth about his family and in the process re-define who he wants to be. I also expected a little bit more out of him when the eventual betrayal was revealed but he sadly didn't deliver on that aspect as well. Of course the good thing is that .... no triangles ..... but the romance again didn't feel genuine. Maggie and Quentin just didn't seem to connect well in my opinion. The friend-enemy Gus had a better chemistry with Maggie and that's saying something.

But I will also say this ..... that ending twist was definitely unexpected and I also appreciated how Shirvington maintains the element of thrill and fast paced action. At the end, though Disruption is by far not my favorite book by any means but I am interested enough to know what happens next. Corruption hopefully will be up to task (its the title of the sequel for those who don't know).

"A story of second chance, heartbreaks and dangerous future technology"

Genre :      Young Adult, Dystopia, Romance, Thriller

Publisher: HarperCollins

Release Date: 4th October, 2016

My Copy: publisher & edelweiss

Rate:              3/5 (Liked It)

Other Books from Author (review links):
            The Violet Eden Chapters #1

Buy:           Amazon | Book Depository 

Monday, 31 October 2016

The Gold Seer Trilogy #2 Like A River Glorious

Presenting The Gold Seer Trilogy #2 Like A River Glorious by Rae Carson.

Here is the summary of the book:

After a harrowing journey across the country, Leah Westfall and her friends have finally arrived in California and are ready to make their fortunes in the Gold Rush. Lee has a special advantage over the other new arrivals in California—she has the ability to sense gold, a secret known only by her handsome best friend Jefferson and her murdering uncle Hiram.

Lee and her friends have the chance to be the most prosperous settlers in California, but Hiram hasn’t given up trying to control Lee and her power. Sabotage and kidnapping are the least of what he’ll do to make sure Lee is his own. His mine is the deepest and darkest in the territory, and there Lee learns the full extent of her magical gift, the worst of her uncle, and the true strength of her friendships. To save everyone, she vows to destroy her uncle and the empire he is building—even at the cost of her own freedom.

The second epic historical fantasy in the Gold Seer trilogy by Rae Carson, the acclaimed author of The Girl of Fire and Thorns.


Begins where 'Walk On Earth A Stranger' ended. The group is now in California but the journey had not been a bed of roses. Losses were had and grievances were dealt with. Consequently bringing the group closer than before, looking to finally put down roots and stake their claims before they began to mine for gold.... Of course not everyone remained, some leaving to return the way they came fearing for their safety and the pull of gold that may not necessarily be a good thing.

But for those that remained the Gold Rush promises much prosperity as settlers in California. Leah Westfall has her own secret ability to consider, her relationship with best friend Jefferson and finally doing something about her murderous Uncle Hiram is just one of her many problems. The best aspect of this series throughout these two books would definitely be how Carson developed all the characters throughout their many ordeals and how they came together as a tight-knit family as they settle down and start building their new future.

I'd be truthful I had actually forgotten some of what happened in the first book. But it didn't seem like an issue once I began reading this book. The author does a great job of reminding us of the details as she buildup from where the first one ended. As a protagonist Leah/Lee has been a consistently strong throughout the story. More so in this book, as she slowly gets more stronger with her abilities and has to finally deal with her Uncle Hiram and hopefully save everyone from the his clutches..... And maybe finally be able to give an answer to Jefferson and her own happiness.

'Like A River Glorious' had everything we missed out on in the first book. The characters are much stronger, the plot develops and branches out more. We finally get to see more of Leah's powers and that epic showdown was just brilliant....... And the book cover is just too gorgeous to be left alone.

"A Golden Sequel. Effectively stronger generously developed."

Genre :     Young Adult, Historical fiction, Romance

Publisher: Greenwillow Books

Release Date: 27th September, 2016

My Copy: publisher & edelweiss

Rate:             4/5 (Really Liked It)

Other Books by the Author(review links):
         #1 Walk On Earth A Stranger

Buy:         Amazon | Book Depository 

Wednesday, 26 October 2016

The Female of Our Species

Presenting The Female of Our Species by Mindy McGinnis.

Here is the summary of the book:

Alex Craft knows how to kill someone. And she doesn’t feel bad about it. When her older sister, Anna, was murdered three years ago and the killer walked free, Alex uncaged the language she knows best. The language of violence.

While her crime goes unpunished, Alex knows she can’t be trusted among other people, even in her small hometown. She relegates herself to the shadows, a girl who goes unseen in plain sight, unremarkable in the high school hallways.

But Jack Fisher sees her. He’s the guy all other guys want to be: the star athlete gunning for valedictorian with the prom queen on his arm. Guilt over the role he played the night Anna’s body was discovered hasn’t let him forget Alex over the years, and now her green eyes amid a constellation of freckles have his attention. He doesn’t want to only see Alex Craft; he wants to know her.

So does Peekay, the preacher’s kid, a girl whose identity is entangled with her dad’s job, though that does not stop her from knowing the taste of beer or missing the touch of her ex-boyfriend. When Peekay and Alex start working together at the animal shelter, a friendship forms and Alex’s protective nature extends to more than just the dogs and cats they care for.

Circumstances bring Alex, Jack, and Peekay together as their senior year unfolds. While partying one night, Alex’s darker nature breaks out, setting the teens on a collision course that will change their lives forever.


Flawed characters. Crime gone unpunished. The horrors of rape culture and pretty much the only language that seems to work against it.... Violence. They say the female of the species, any species are more vicious than their male counterparts. And they are not wrong. A fact proven in stark details by Mindy McGinnis's haunting and realistic words throughout this book.

Sincerely I didn't know what I would find going into this book. I also wasn't expecting it to be so difficult to process as well. Alex, Jack and Peekay were some of the best characters I had ever come across. None of them are perfect. None of them are blameless. But all three of them are flawed in their ways.... I feel truly incapable of enunciating just what I really felt about this book. 

But I will say that this book is painfully realistic. It's honest and gritty and should definitely be a required reading to all. With how much rape and murder cases make the news these days. So I would definitely applaud McGinnis for presenting to us with this amazing book with such dynamic characters. 

This book is for sure not a feel good story, a wish-fulfillment, feminist or your run of the mill happy ever after. So you are warned before you begin this book..... That said you should give this book a chance because I absolutely guarantee it that Alex's brutally honest persona, her friendship with the preacher's kid (Peekay) and her budding romance with the popular Jock (Jack) ..... Is a glimpse of real life, you don't see too often in any form of literature.

"A too real and compound look to reality. McGinnis's words are a lesson for all ages"

Genre :     Young Adult, Contemporary, Realistic, Romance, Mystery

Publisher: Katherine Tegen Books

Release Date: 20th September, 2016

My Copy: publisher & edelweiss

Rate:             4/5 (Really Liked It)

Buy:         Amazon | Book Depository 

Tuesday, 11 October 2016

Passenger #1 Passenger

Presenting Passenger #1 Passenger by Alexandra Bracken.

Here is the summary of the book:

In one devastating night, violin prodigy Etta Spencer loses everything she knows and loves. Thrust into an unfamiliar world by a stranger with a dangerous agenda, Etta is certain of only one thing: she has traveled not just miles but years from home. And she’s inherited a legacy she knows nothing about from a family whose existence she’s never heard of. Until now.

Nicholas Carter is content with his life at sea, free from the Ironwoods—a powerful family in the colonies—and the servitude he’s known at their hands. But with the arrival of an unusual passenger on his ship comes the insistent pull of the past that he can’t escape and the family that won’t let him go so easily. Now the Ironwoods are searching for a stolen object of untold value, one they believe only Etta, Nicholas’ passenger, can find. In order to protect her, he must ensure she brings it back to them—whether she wants to or not.

Together, Etta and Nicholas embark on a perilous journey across centuries and continents, piecing together clues left behind by the traveler who will do anything to keep the object out of the Ironwoods’ grasp. But as they get closer to the truth of their search, and the deadly game the Ironwoods are playing, treacherous forces threaten to separate Etta not only from Nicholas but from her path home... forever.


I was equally excited for this book and i am equally dreading reviewing this too now that I have finished it, I was lucky enough to be contacted by Hachette India for a review because this book is clothed in such a gorgeous cover, its Alexandra Bracken (of course I still haven't read her Darkest Minds series, yet) and because the story has time travel .... and i'm a sucker for anything Time travel. This one also has been hyped across the social media a lot too. So those can be a hit and miss thing in a lot of instances ..... In the case of Passenger, it somehow felt in between.

Etta is a budding violinist and Nicholas is a content sea traveler, who dreams of owing his own boat. Etta is just about to have her big debut in modern day America but before that could happen, enters the illusive Ironwood family who whisk her away back in time to search for something they say her mother stole, in return for the release of her mother who had been taken away by the said Ironwoods. And Nicholas must help her, if he wants to get away from the clutches of his family (Ironwood) and be free of its web.

I liked Etta and Nicholas as protagonists. Etta's world has been turned upside down and its understandable that she is suspicious of this secret world and at a loss to do anything about it other than what they want her to do. She is headstrong, and with a good head on her shoulder. Nicholas was a sweetheart. He is chivalrous, protective, loyal to a fault and a well mannered eighteenth century guy, who knows how to treat a girl right. He falls for Etta at first glance but knows not to expect anything because of the restrictions that differentiate them in more ways than one.

This book also has another major point to recommend it. They did time travel but in a different style. Usually people travel trough time because of a rare gene, artifacts or machines but Bracken employs the use of corridors where people walk through to travel in time, not something you usually see in time travel story. And also this story has a colored character in this historical setting, good choice there.... Definitely not something you usually see.

Its just the one thing that made me rate it less was that the story felt too long and dragging. Also the explanations where too long winded, that the pacing got distracted sometimes because of that..... And I got bored because of that. But i definitely liked the development of the romance between Etta and Nicholas..... I'm definitely coming back to this series because the cliffhanger was just heartbreaking and i want to know what happens next.

"New and slightly different but a time travel never seen before"
Genre :     Young Adult, Sci-fi, Romance, Historical fiction

Publisher: Quercus

Release Date: 7th April, 2016

My Copy: courtesy of the publisher

Rate:             3/5 (Liked It)

Buy:         Amazon | Book Depository 

Wednesday, 21 September 2016

Blood of Gods and Royals #2 Empire of Dust

Presenting Blood of Gods and Royals #2 Empire of Dust by Eleanor Herman.

Here is the summary of the book:

In Macedon, war rises like smoke, forbidden romance blooms and ancient magic tempered with rage threatens to turn an empire to dust.

After winning his first battle, Prince Alexander fights to become the ruler his kingdom demands—but the line between leader and tyrant blurs with each new threat.

Meanwhile, Hephaestion, cast aside by Alexander for killing the wrong man, must conceal the devastating secret of a divine prophecy from Katerina even as the two of them are thrust together on a dangerous mission to Egypt.

The warrior, Jacob, determined to forget his first love, vows to eradicate the ancient Blood Magics and believes that royal prisoner Cynane holds the key to Macedon’s undoing.

And in chains, the Persian princess Zofia still longs to find the Spirit Eaters, but first must grapple with the secrets of her handsome—and deadly—captor.


After 'Legacy of Kings' comes 'Empire of Dust'. Following the tale of young Prince Alexander of Macedon. Of Hephaestion and Alexander's twin Katerina and their secret mission to gather allies for Alexander. Of Olympias, Cyanane, Zofia, and Jacob of Aesaerian Lords garner their own secrets, schemes and half-truth for their end goals. Empire of Dust has the action from the get go. Offering just like its predecessor a plethora of stories, while somehow managing to keep all the stories separate.

Still slow on the pickup. Only progress in pace as we go further into the story but the whole effect this time was just boring. With how much I praised its predecessor, it just took me too long to finish it...... Although i will say that i do like the plot painted by Eleanor Herman but this sequel just exhausted me. Alexander wants to prove his worthiness as a ruler. Heph wants to prove that Alexander still needs him. Cynane wants to rule. Jacob has his own dues as one of the Aesaerian warriors. Zofia wants to alter her destiny and Katerina wants Olympias to answer for her crimes. Their goals maybe same still but this sequel proved too boring as I already said for me to care.

Maybe the problem is that the author is trying to do to much, resulting in this messy sequel. But it did and while the same brought an effect of newness in 'Legacy of Kings', the same wasn't true at all for its sequel. Frankly the only story i wanted to read in this book was of Hephaestion and Katerina who are together for the entirety of the book on a mission from Alexander.

The romance while subtle also didn't do much to improve the excitement i would be expected to feel here. The character development is also a major aspect of this series that i really admire. So hopefully things will be better in the next book because the plot and the world buildup with the clever mix of history and fantasy is a simply brilliant experience.

"A bit of a let down but a worthy sequel to this rich mix of history and mythology"

Genre :     Young Adult, Historical fiction, Fantasy, Romance, Paranormal

Publisher: Harlequin Teen

Release Date: 28th June, 2016

My Copy: publisher & netgalley

Rate:             3/5 (Liked It)

Other Books by the Author(review links):
         #1 Legacy of Kings

Buy:         Amazon | Book Depository 

Monday, 19 September 2016

The Winner's Trilogy #2 The Winner's Crime

Presenting The Winner's Trilogy #2 The Winner's Crime by Marie Rutkoski.

Here is the summary of the book:

Lady Kestrel's engagement to Valoria's crown prince calls for great celebration: balls and performances, fireworks and revelry. But to Kestrel it means a cage of her own making. Embedded in the imperial court as a spy, she lives and breathes deceit and cannot confide in the one person she really longs to trust ...

While Arin fights to keep his country's freedom from the hands of his enemy, he suspects that Kestrel knows more than she shows. As Kestrel comes closer to uncovering a shocking secret, it might not be a dagger in the dark that cuts him open, but the truth.

Lies will come undone, and Kestrel and Arin learn just how much their crimes will cost them in this second book in the breathtaking Winner's trilogy.


This book just hurts.... Literally, tragically and emotionally. I didn't know if that was at all possible before. But MY GOD! Marie Rutkoski's 'The Winner's Crime', the sequel to The Winner's Curse ..... just hurts. You brilliant brilliant author and your most exquisite book. I may have said that a particular book was amazing enough to make us emotional before but .... Winner's Crime figuratively and literally takes it a step further. And successfully manages to destroy us from the core *cries*..... Seriously I swear it - It was that painful to read.

Kestrel and Arin. There have been many literally couples before who don't follow the norm set by others..... These two are just the same. It is always a wonder to read about your favorite couples as they develop throughout a series. Definitely true for these two as well. Arin is more than the slave he was in the first book. Likewise Kestrel is more than just the calculating daughter of the General. Romance is of course not the focus of this tale. It is there shrouded in its subtlety and the dangers games of life. But politics, conspiracies and betrayal fill its pages with its intrigue and the masterful setup by Rutkoski herself.

They may only meet a few times throughout the book but both Kestrel and Arin are always thinking about each other. Every decision each of them make is always with the significant other in mind. Kestrel in a dangerous bid to save the Herrani agrees to marry the Prince of Valoria. Setting herself up to be the spy for the welfare of Arin and his people. Kestrel manages to trade one cage for another. All the while risking her life for him. Of course Arin doesn't know why she is marrying the Prince. As she hesitates to tell him the whole truth, the noose of the ruthless Emperor being way too precarious to navigate.

Really just about every other negative feeling and sad truths are filled in this book. Conspiracies, betrayal, court politics, deceptions and failures to explain are what we find ..... Resulting in us readers hurt to the core. Arin on the other hand looks towards dangerous allies to win back his freedom from the Valorians without knowing that he already had a staunch ally in the heart of the court. These two know each other so well that it is marvel really that they don't call the other out on the truth.

Arin knows just how Kestrel thinks. Likewise Kestrel knows just how Arin thinks. Call them soulmates or their sweeping, intense romance and feeling for each other. They know each other too well..... But.... somehow they still second guess each other. Everytime it happened and I just felt like wanting to jump into the story and bashing their heads together and then telling them to be completely honest with each other. Because the pain, sadness and resignation we see throughout this sequel was just tragic.... and too painful for my sad sad heart.

And that soul shattering cliffhanger just killed me ........... Why must you authors play with us so! No questions asked the Winner's trilogy is one series that deserves all the praises we can heap on it. Both The Winner's Curse and Winner's Crime are magnificent pieces of literature. With a gorgeous and intriguing world setup, equally distinguished cast of characters, an almost lyrical flow of words through the pages and a narrative like no other.

But I love a good happy ever after ...... and I hope we get that in the The Winner's Kiss, which i am equally anxious and hesitant to read because i have no idea just how much more painful subterfuge my heart can handle.... But great work Ms. Rutkoski. Simply brilliant.

"A heartbreaking-ly epic sequel in the exquisite Winner's Trilogy"

Genre :     Young Adult, Historical fiction, Fantasy, Romance

Publisher: Bloomsbury Children

Release Date: 12th March, 2015

My Copy: publisher & netgalley

Rate:             5/5 (It was Amazing)

Other Books by the Author(review links):
         #1 The Winner's Curse

Buy:         Amazon | Book Depository 

Thursday, 15 September 2016

Harry Potter and the Cursed Child Part 1 & 2

Presenting Harry Potter and the Cursed Child Part 1 & 2 by J.K. Rowling, John Tiffany, Jack Thorne.

Here is the summary of the book:

Based on an original new story by J.K. Rowling, Jack Thorne and John Tiffany, a new play by Jack Thorne, Harry Potter and the Cursed Child is the eighth story in the Harry Potter series and the first official Harry Potter story to be presented on stage. The play will receive its world premiere in London’s West End on July 30, 2016.

It was always difficult being Harry Potter and it isn’t much easier now that he is an overworked employee of the Ministry of Magic, a husband and father of three school-age children.

While Harry grapples with a past that refuses to stay where it belongs, his youngest son Albus must struggle with the weight of a family legacy he never wanted. As past and present fuse ominously, both father and son learn the uncomfortable truth: sometimes, darkness comes from unexpected places.


(This review is the most informal one I have ever written *wink*)

"Hogwarts, Hogwarts, Hoggy Warty Hogwarts,Teach us something please,Whether we be old and bald,Or young with scabby knees,Our heads could do with filling,With some interesting stuff,For now they're bare and full of......"

Hogwarts. Harry Potter. And the Wizarding world. My first love that always shall remain so.

J.K, Rowling enchanted us with the life story for the boy wizard to grows up and defeats the worst villain ever, Lord Voldermort. All the while introducing us to some of the best characters, magical creatures and the best of wand waving magic.

So the 8th Harry Potter story???? Give me! Give me!

Its in script format? No problem i'll take it. Since i can't really go to London to just watch the live play. So script would do. And while it is evident enough that J.K. Rowling didn't write this story, the playwrights John Tiffany & Jack Thorne still manage to capture the magic that enchanted us throughout the Harry Potter books from the 1st to the 7th.

Of course i maintained total radio silence before jumping into this book. I literally went in blind without any expectations or any idea of what the story is about. Also paced myself and read it in 3 days.... people said they finished it in one sitting but i didn't want that so I paced myself and .... THANK GOD I did .... Because i got the most out of it like that..... But the wait between my pacing of the book was just excruciating.... BUT WORTH IT!

Of course the familiar characters were a lot more OOC than what we were used to. All of our beloved characters are adults now. With children of their own. So it was expected that they would be different. Also this is the script for the stage play. So things were bound to be different in that aspect but the best part as I said above ..... they managed to capture the magic of that magical world.

But things are not sunshine and roses for Harry and Co. Harry Potter doesn't know how to deal with his son Albus. Albus on the other hand doesn't know how to interact with his father. Just to rebel against his parents (Those who are familiar with the anime/manga of Naruto will recognize the parallels between Naruto & Boruto). Although Albus Potter's meeting with Scorpius Malfoy and their resulting friendship defined them both...... but Scorpius was just the sweetest and the kindest *aww*. And the highlight for this story as well. Really I liked Scorpius the bookworm *wink* the best.

Really its not just an experience for Albus, who is nothing like his father. He doesn't like Hogwarts. Isn't athletic like his parents at all. You can call him the problem child really. Harry also grows through this ordeal. Not only does he finds a common ground with his son but also does he take the time to finally get to know said teenaged son. This is definitely not a Harry Potter reboot like many were expecting it to be and really that's how it really should be.

On the other hand, adult Ron and Hermoine were a bit more different than what I was expecting. But on the whole this is a compound adventure, a masterfully written play and a meaningful and well deserving of the title of being the 8th story of the Harry Potter series...... Because friendship, true friendship that we saw between 'Harry, Ron and Hermoine' and 'Albus & Scorpius' is rare and it should be cherished. And family matters above all else.

..... Finally i'll only say this - I hope this isn't the last of the Wizarding world and we will get more..... PRETTY PLEASE!!!

"The exciting new adventure in the fan favorite magical Wizarding World of Harry Potter"

Genre :      Young Adult, Fantasy, Script

PublisherLittle, Brown UK

Release Date: 31st July, 2016

My Copy: bought (hardback)

Rate:              4/5 (Really Liked It)

Other Books on Harry Potter:
                       (review links)
Buy:           Amazon | Book Depository 

Tuesday, 13 September 2016

The Death House

Presenting The Death House by Sarah Pinborough.

Here is the summary of the book:

Taken from his family, Toby now lives in the Death House; an out-of-time existence far from the modern world, where he, and the others who live there, are studied by Matron and her team of nurses. They're looking for any sign of sickness. Any sign of their wards changing. Any sign that it's time to take them to the sanatorium.

No one returns from the sanatorium.

Withdrawn from his house-mates and living in his memories of the past, Toby spends his days fighting his fear. But then a new arrival in the house shatters the fragile peace, and everything changes.

Because everybody dies. It's how you choose to live that counts.


Equal parts fascinating and equal parts dragging. At this point I was still nursing my Lady Midnight hangover. So I was still on the fence for this. If you have read The Girl with All the Gifts then you will find this book similar. I will say this about The Death House that the author sure manages to keep us in suspense till the end. Where we realized that the secret wasn't revealed at all.

So a wee bit disappointed here. Of course the narrative deals mostly with the mental issues and the day to day life of the inmates at the institution or Death House as they call it. The mystery of the illness and what happens to those taken up the lift to the sanatorium. The mystery and suspense as I said are maintained till the end. Sadly those did not result in anything,

But the best thing for this book would definitely be the humans in the story. The narrative while seemingly slow at first focuses more on the children. How their environment effects them. Their peers. Or the scare of the disease sending them to the sanatorium. I'll be truthful, I didn't really care about any of the characters but you have got to hand it to the author, the way in much she elaborates the mundane life at the Death House is simply exquisite.

"Dark, compelling and hauntingly human"

Genre :     Young Adult, Psychological, Thriller, Dystopia

Publisher: Gollancz

Release Date: 12th November, 2015

My Copy: bought (paperback)

Rate:             3/5 (Liked It)

Buy:         Amazon | Book Depository 

Bright Smoke, Cold Fire

Presenting Bright Smoke, Cold Fire by Rosamund Hodge.

Here is the summary of the book:

When the mysterious fog of the Ruining crept over the world, the living died and the dead rose. Only the walled city of Viyara was left untouched.

The heirs of the city’s most powerful—and warring—families, Mahyanai Romeo and Juliet Catresou share a love deeper than duty, honor, even life itself. But the magic laid on Juliet at birth compels her to punish the enemies of her clan—and Romeo has just killed her cousin Tybalt. Which means he must die.

Paris Catresou has always wanted to serve his family by guarding Juliet. But when his ward tries to escape her fate, magic goes terribly wrong—killing her and leaving Paris bound to Romeo. If he wants to discover the truth of what happened, Paris must delve deep into the city, ally with his worst enemy . . . and perhaps turn against his own clan.

Mahyanai Runajo just wants to protect her city—but she’s the only one who believes it’s in peril. In her desperate hunt for information, she accidentally pulls Juliet from the mouth of death—and finds herself bound to the bitter, angry girl. Runajo quickly discovers Juliet might be the one person who can help her recover the secret to saving Viyara.

Both pairs will find friendship where they least expect it. Both will find that Viyara holds more secrets and dangers than anyone ever expected. And outside the walls, death is waiting. . .


I like Mr. Shakespeare. I respect the playwright really and admire his work very much but ..... Romeo & Juliet ..... I always keep at a distance. Un-uh no way, this play just somehow rubs me in the wrong direction but this is a retelling in author Rosamund Hodge's unique and cool way of adding fantasy and a little bit of darkness like in her books 'Cruel Beauty' & 'Crimson Bound'. Sadly the end result had me bored out of my life with Bright Smoke Cold Fire.

Its not really the fault of the book. I was still nursing a bookish hangover from the awesomeness of Lady Midnight. So I didn't feel that into the book either. I will point out that Hodge does a great job of setting up this world. She also plays around with the original script of the source material, putting her own spin on things. But its well within the confines of the story.

I also liked the parameters of the unusual friendship between Romeo & Paris and Juliet & Runajo. How they all begin with hate slowly evolving into a grudging respect and almost friendship. But i didn't care much for them characters at all. It just felt too tedious. One of the main reasons for that was definitely because of the rich mythology the author created for this series.

Its good that Hodge was trying to set the world but it was only when we reach some chapters further does the world start making sense. I don't usually mind it but it all just felt too heavy this time. Resulting in me not really enjoying the book. Maybe it was also because i just don't like Romeo & Juliet. Maybe thats why I didn't enjoy this book as I was expecting it too ..... come on just look at that gorgeous cover.

"Romeo & Juliet in a world of magic & fantasy"

Genre :      Young Adult, Fairy Tale re-tellings, Paranormal, Romance

Publisher: Balzer+Bray

Release Date: 27th September, 2016

My Copy: publisher & edelweiss

Rate:              3/5 (Liked It)

Other Books from Author (review links):
            Cruel Beauty 
            Crimson Bound

Buy:           Amazon | Book Depository 

Monday, 5 September 2016

The Dark Artifices #1 Lady Midnight

Presenting The Dark Artifices #1 Lady Midnight by Cassandra Clare.

Here is the summary of the book:

In a kingdom by the sea…

In a secret world where half-angel warriors are sworn to fight demons, parabatai is a sacred word.

A parabatai is your partner in battle. A parabatai is your best friend. Parabatai can be everything to each other—but they can never fall in love.

Emma Carstairs is a warrior, a Shadowhunter, and the best in her generation. She lives for battle. Shoulder to shoulder with her parabatai, Julian Blackthorn, she patrols the streets of Los Angeles, where vampires party on the Sunset Strip, and faeries—the most powerful of supernatural creatures—teeter on the edge of open war with Shadowhunters. When the bodies of humans and faeries turn up murdered in the same way Emma’s parents were when she was a child, an uneasy alliance is formed. This is Emma’s chance for revenge—and Julian’s chance to get back his brother Mark, who is being held prisoner by the faerie Courts. All Emma, Mark, and Julian have to do is solve the murders within two weeks…and before the murderer targets them.

Their search takes Emma from sea caves full of sorcery to a dark lottery where death is dispensed. And each clue she unravels uncovers more secrets. What has Julian been hiding from her all these years? Why does Shadowhunter Law forbid parabatai to fall in love? Who really killed her parents—and can she bear to know the truth?

The darkly magical world of Shadowhunters has captured the imaginations of millions of readers across the globe. Join the adventure in Lady Midnight, the long-awaited first volume of a new trilogy from Cassandra Clare.


Oh my fragile heart *sighs*. Just when you thought the Shadowhunters world world couldn't offer anything more. Well lo and behold Cassandra Clare offers us Lady Midnight on a silver platter. This here is the perfect book hangover inducing entity. It really is. It may be heftier than City of Heavenly Fire but the material within its pages are more than enough to keep us tethered to the edge of our seats.
Parabatai. Clandestine romance. Hidden Enemy and ancient grievances. All tantalizing aspects. This is the beginning of The Dark Artifices series. This is the story of Emma Carstairs and Julian Blackthorne. The is the story of curious murder cases. That palpable tension between Julian and Emma and the surprise involvement of the Fair Folk.

Parabatai forbidden to fall in love. This is a notion that had rankled us since Jace & Alec (of course their's is an entirely different story). It had been since then established that Parabatai form for life. It is a friendship of the soul (my interpretation) and the form of Eros love is forbidden. We have never really known what that really meant till now. Really aside from the mystery, Lady Midnight explores this aspect of the Shadowhunter's life in great details. For that I am definitely very thankful.

We were first introduced to Emma and the Blackthorne kids in City of Heavenly Fire. Lady Midnight takes place some years after that. And really it is apparent enough that Emma & Julian should never have taken the parabatai oath. Emma is everything sassy and stubborn. Since her parents died during Sebastian's war on the Shadow world. Revenge is all that's been in her mind. Of course people are going to compare Clary and Emma but really they are too different. Although she felt dense about a lot of other things but is quick to defend her loved ones and is prone to taking risks.

Julian on the other hand felt more relaxed. They were both victims of the war and since Julian had to take over as the pseudo-dad to his youngr siblings. So he felt more responsible than Emma. He is also quite an amazing artist. Well these two balance each other out really well. But the sexual tension between them *HOT* had us surely fanning ourselves.

But they are not perfect really. They make mistakes. Julian for example would be totally glad if he didn't have to take care of his siblings like a parent. Emma would do everything to avenge her parents and assuage her guilt.... Really what I mean to say is that they are not perfect. Like any human being they make mistakes. Sometimes colossal ..... And that is really what make me like them at first glance....

Whatever the shadowhunters may say I am totally rooting for these two to get together in the end. Because that awful cliffhanger *sighs* Cassie why do you do this to us.

Amazing beginning really. Good writing. Strong base to fall back on. Strong and dynamic cast of characters. The obvious romances, magic and mythology .... And a new OTP to root for! Definitely eager for the sequel now. Well done as always.

"Sublime and tantalizing. A wholesome new adventure in the world of Shadowhunters"
Genre :      Young Adult, Paranormal, Urban Fantasy, Romance

PublisherMargaret K. McElderry

Release Date: 8th March, 2016

My Copy: bought (paperback)

Rate:              5/5 (It was Awesome)

Other Books from Cassandra Clare:
                       (review links)
Buy:           Amazon | Book Depository 

Sunday, 4 September 2016

The Naturals #3 All In

Presenting The Naturals #3 All In by Jennifer Lynn Barnes.

Here is the summary of the book:

Three casinos. Three bodies. Three days.

After a string of brutal murders in Las Vegas, Cassie Hobbes and the Naturals are called in to investigate. But even with the team's unique profiling talents, these murders seem baffling: unlike many serial killers, this one uses different methods every time. All of the victims were killed in public, yet the killer does not show up on any tape. And each victim has a string of numbers tattooed on their wrist. Hidden in the numbers is a code—and the closer the Naturals come to unraveling the mystery, the more perilous the case becomes.

Meanwhile, Cassie is dealing with an equally dangerous and much more painful mystery. For the first time in years, there's been a break in her mother's case. As personal issues and tensions between the team mount, Cassie and the Naturals will be faced with impossible odds—and impossible choices.

REVIEW == (There may be spoilers)

Just when you think you know everything in the crime drama genre, something comes along and surprises you big time. Truly brilliant. All In by Jennifer Lynn Barnes is the third book in the Naturals series and by GOD the first 2 books sound like test runs for the big round .... aka this third one.

Barnes does a good job of keeping the mysteries tight and bound only letting them out slowly as the plot necessitates, resulting in us turning the pages to get to the results. Because the mystery and te reveals are a prospect too tantalizing to be left alone by themselves. Not only that the prospects are too high. This time it is not only about catching the killer because there is an evil cult of murderers running in the background. Pulling the strings.

Cassie, Michael, Dean, Lia and Sloanne have come a long way from who and how they were in the first book. The apparent character development throughout the series is definitely its highlight. From Cold cases to active cases and getting to know each other and forming relationships. The 5 are a close knit family now. Individually they each are outcasts in their spheres with a closet full of secrets and skeletons but together .... Wow they are a well fit family unit. If one of them are in trouble the others race to help.

'All In' like the first two books share some space to look at the background of the main characters. It is a theme followed from the first book and this time it is Sloanne's turn. The psycho killer is a continued creeping presence as we readers advance through the pages. Exerting their presence to all alike. And then the surprise reveal of the cult of methodical murderers and how Cassie's mother's murder and Judd's own past connects to them lot.

It is a phenomenal series where every subsequent book improves on its predecessors. It also tells of the author's caliber as they strive hard to make it so. 'The Naturals', 'Killer Instinct' and now 'All In' are perfect examples of solid literature. Very well done Jennifer Lynn Barnes .... MY GOD! That reveal was unexpected. I'm eager for the next one now!!

"Jaw-dropping, breathless and a wholesome experience"
Genre :      Young Adult, Criminal Mystery, Thriller, Romance, Contemporary


Release Date: 3rd November, 2015

My Copy: bought (ebook)

Rate:              5/5 (It was Amazing)

Other Books in the series (review links):
                #1 The Naturals 
                #2 Killer Instinct

Buy:           Amazon | Book Depository 

Saturday, 3 September 2016

Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children #1

Presenting Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children #1 Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children by Ransom Riggs.

Here is the summary of the book:

A mysterious island. An abandoned orphanage. A strange collection of curious photographs.

A horrific family tragedy sets sixteen-year-old Jacob journeying to a remote island off the coast of Wales, where he discovers the crumbling ruins of Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children. As Jacob explores its abandoned bedrooms and hallways, it becomes clear that the children were more than just peculiar. They may have been dangerous. They may have been quarantined on a deserted island for good reason. And somehow—impossible though it seems—they may still be alive.

A spine-tingling fantasy illustrated with haunting vintage photography, Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children will delight adults, teens, and anyone who relishes an adventure in the shadows.


Gorgeous Cover. Amazing plot. Wicked use of unusual vintage photography with the said plot. Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children is the first part of the trilogy and damn did it surprise me. OKAY .... for those of you who still haven't read it or are planning to should note that while the cover may give the appearance of a horror genre, it is not really. It is more of an X-men meets time-travel adventure.

That being this is one cool adventure. It begins with Jacob, who after the horrifying murder of his grandfather journeys to the remote island of the coast of Wales in search of the home where his grandfather spent a happy childhood, hoping for closure. And maybe find out more about the unusual pictures he found in his grandfather's belongings.

Of course searching the derelict house, he finds out the children were oddly peculiar, maybe dangerous as the synopsis points out and maybe not really dead as facts would suggest. What follows is a wonderful adventure through time. New friendship. New adventures. New revelations. Horrid monsters whom only Jacob could see and a collection of awesome powers.

Jacob of course is the only one i am going to mention here. He mabe young still but possess a sharp mind and is very resourceful. His character kinda reminded me a bit of Dr. Watson (BBC Sherlock one) who says nothing happens to him to his physicist before he meets Sherlock. Jacob felt like that going through life the slow lane and proclaiming his ordinariness. Of course then the world explodes into a plethora of colors when he finds the Children's home. It was quite endearing to see him react to the children and discover that hidden world.

Let me just say that after the initial shock wears off, this book just can't resist throwing something colorful at you even with its black and white adorned pages. Marvelous job by Ransom Riggs. Telling and creating such an imaginable and highly creative story. 

People complained that they had problems going through this book ..... Don't mind them this is actually a pretty fast paced read with promises of a great adventure. I am definitely excited to explore this world more in the sequels. Well done!

"X-men meets time-travel n this wicked cool mix of prose and vintage photography"

Genre :     Young Adult, Paranormal, Fantasy

Publisher: Quirk

Release Date: 7th June, 2011

My Copy: bought (paperback)

Rate:             4/5 (Really Liked It)

Buy:         Amazon | Book Depository 

Friday, 2 September 2016

Three Dark Crowns #1 Three Dark Crowns

Presenting Three Dark Crowns #1 Three Dark Crowns by Kendare Blake.

Here is the summary of the book:

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 lose…it’s life or death. The night the sisters turn sixteen, the battle begins. The last queen standing gets the crown.

If only it was that simple. Katharine is unable to tolerate the weakest poison, and Arsinoe, no matter how hard she tries, can’t make even a weed grow. The two queens have been shamefully faking their powers, taking care to keep each other, the island, and their powerful sister Mirabella none the wiser. But with alliances being formed, betrayals taking shape, and ruthless revenge haunting the queens’ every move, one thing is certain: the last queen standing might not be the strongest…but she may be the darkest.


Three Crowns. Three Sisters. A mysterious island. A vicious duel to declare the Queen Crowned and the general bloodbath. This is the story of Katherine, Arsinoe and Mirabella. Sisters. Queens. Each said to possess three separate gifts and raised since infancy to .... well fight it out. I have been a fan of Kendare Blake's words since 'Anna Dressed in Blood' and damn do i say this book is another milestone of her pen.

Decidedly dark and a little creepy. Three Dark Crowns divides the story into three points of views. Namely, Katherine (Poisoner), Arsinoe (Naturalist) and Mirabella (Elemental). One can digest any poison without breaking a sweat, one can bloom any flower with just a nudge and the last one capable of controlling the elements. Of course two of them are faking it. And obviously political and conspiratorial influences are not far behind.

All three stories or better yet point of views tells three separate stories and respect for the author for keeping the characters separate, beautifully meshing together in a crescendo of a revelation. Some very much unexpected and surprisingly well placed. Since this book hasn't released yet, so I well endeavor to keep what I tell next spoiler fee. Although I will say this that while the three POVs are equally distributed it still felt that Arsinoe and Mirabella's stories took center stage and Katherine's lost its shine after an epic first chapter.

Throughout the story it is said that Mirabella is the strongest and ruthless. It seems she does have a soft side. Where each groups raise each of the Queen to kill her opponent sisters but she seems to still old a particular regard for them. Although I will say this the part of Mirabella and Joseph really brought down the story for me. So it gets a few stars less.

Arsinoe on the other hand maybe the weakest of them all but her leap before looking attitude maybe he best quality and felt a tad reckless. As well as Katherine's struggles with her fare share but as the story progresses, evolves into a consummate poised Queen, charming to boot. Her chapters were definitely my favorite and the most dark.

While Katherine doesn't get much spotlight it looks like she will in the next book. So i'm very excite to see what happens next. Kendare Blake does has a flare for the dramatics. There is a constant tug-of-war of ideals and powers, the added drama, romance, politics and out-of-bounds conspiracy afoot.

This is only the first book o the series and while the stated negatives put me a bit off. I will definitely be on the look out for he sequel.

"A darkly enticing series debut"

Genre :      Young Adult, Paranormal, High Fantasy, Romance

Publisher: Harper Teen

Release Date: 20th September, 2016

My Copy: publisher & edelweiss

Rate:              3/5 (Liked It)

Other Books by the Author (review link):
                 Anna #1 Anna Dressed in Blood 
                 Anna #2 Girl of Nightmares

Buy:           Amazon | Book Depository 

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