06 November, 2017

Mini-Review Collection { 3 }

Hi friends! Since I like knocking off several reviews at once, I've decided to create Mini-Review Collection, where I'll usually post 3 quick reviews of books I recently read!

In this third collection, I'll be reviewing some fantasy-ish ARCs: The Glass SpareRosemarked, and The Becoming of Noah Shaw!


The Glass Spare by Lauren DeStefano
The Glass Spare, book 1
Published October 24, 2017 by Balzer + Bray
e-ARC provided by Edelweiss
A banished princess.
A deadly curse.
A kingdom at war.

Wil Heidle, the only daughter of the king of the world’s wealthiest nation, has grown up in the shadows. Kept hidden from the world in order to serve as a spy for her father—whose obsession with building his empire is causing a war—Wil wants nothing more than to explore the world beyond her kingdom, if only her father would give her the chance.

Until one night Wil is attacked, and she discovers a dangerous secret. Her touch turns people into gemstone. At first Wil is horrified—but as she tests its limits, she’s drawn more and more to the strange and volatile ability. When it leads to tragedy, Wil is forced to face the destructive power within her and finally leave her home to seek the truth and a cure.

But finding the key to her redemption puts her in the path of a cursed prince who has his own ideas for what to do with her power.

With a world on the brink of war and a power of ultimate destruction, can Wil find a way to help the kingdom that’s turned its back on her, or will she betray her past and her family forever?

♫ ♫  ♫

Oh, break my heart into a thousand pieces, who don’t you, DeStefano? I’m pretty sure she would rejoice in my heartbreak. 

Ugh, guys, I love this book. So much! I had so many emotions while reading this one and I didn’t mind at all because I loved it so, so much! What a unique world! Amazing characters! Great camaraderie, great sibling relationships! [dramatically clutches chest] SO MANY GOOD THINGS, so this review may not be as mini as I intended it. Oops? 

First things first: the world itself. Yes, this is a high fantasy, but what I loved most about it was the fact that it was full of fantasy and growing technology. This is basically all I’ve ever wanted from a fantasy--the ability to grow out of generic old world features. For it to be a bit more industrialised, because why can’t that happen? It provided a fresh take--at least for me--and I loved it!

I had found the beginning a bit slow, but it went with the story super well. It gave readers the time to fully experience the easy relationship Wil had with her brothers, whom I adored. Their easy-going attitude with each other made me so, so, so happy, you have no idea. It meant the world to see them teasing and laughing and getting along with each other. 

Then came the rest of the novel, which is where my heart broke, haha. Going through Wil's journey was fun, to be sure, but with the occasional flashbacks, it did break my heart for her. God, the flashbacks. It not only added more to Wil’s character, but it gave more insight to the relationships she had and they made me want to bawl my eyes out.

There is a subtle romance and that made this book all the better! It not being a main focus or overtaking the plot definitely had more going for the novel. The love interest, in any case, was adorable, and the interactions between the two will definitely have readers wanting more. I really enjoyed it. 

Okay, wrapping it up here. Overall? What an amazing first novel in a new duology. DeStefano’s storytelling skills practically shiny here and I highly recommend picking this one up. Also, CURSES, THERE ARE CURSES HERE, why wouldn’t you pick it up??

Buy links!


Rosemarked by Livia Blackburne
Rosemarked, book 1
Publishes November 7, 2017 by Disney-Hyperion
e-ARC provided by Netgalley
Add it on GoodReads!

A healer who cannot be healed . . .

When Zivah falls prey to the deadly rose plague, she knows it’s only a matter of time before she fully succumbs. Now she’s destined to live her last days in isolation, cut off from her people and unable to practice her art—until a threat to her village creates a need that only she can fill.

A soldier shattered by war . . .

Broken by torture at the hands of the Amparan Empire, Dineas thirsts for revenge against his captors. Now escaped and reunited with his tribe, he’ll do anything to free them from Amparan rule—even if it means undertaking a plan that risks not only his life but his very self.

Thrust together on a high-stakes mission to spy on the capital, the two couldn’t be more different: Zivah, deeply committed to her vow of healing, and Dineas, yearning for vengeance. But as they grow closer, they must find common ground to protect those they love. And amidst the constant fear of discovery, the two grapple with a mutual attraction that could break both of their carefully guarded hearts.

This smart, sweeping fantasy with a political edge and a slow-burning romance will capture fans of The Lumatere Chronicles and An Ember in the Ashes.

♫ ♫ 

Ah, so… this was just… blissfully mediocre? There was nothing special about it but at the same time, it wasn’t plain bad. You know, those books that are just in the plain middle?

The writing was very bland for me, so that made it hard for me to be thoroughly engrossed into the story. I didn’t think there was much substance, much voice to the two main characters. I think that was my main problem. When characters don’t have a voice that shines through the page, it makes it so difficult for me to really like it.

Another part was the weird potion the healer, Zivah, used. It just seemed so convenient for what they were doing and I wasn’t really buying it. It seemed way too easy, too simple. Something that erases your mind and makes you act like a new person? And then lets you get them back? That seems dangerous, not something that could be done easily. I was hoping for more danger, especially with this part of the story, and was disappointed. (Then again, if it actually is possible, then whaddya know! I would still be hella hesitant over it lol.)

Overall, I guess I was just… expecting more. It’s definitely not bad, like I’ve said. The whole disease thing makes it a unique fantasy. But I didn’t feel there were enough stakes, enough voice for it to be something I loved. 3 stars!

Buy links!


The Becoming of Noah Shaw by Michelle Hodkin
The Shaw Confessions, book 1
Publishes November 7, 2017 by Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers
e-ARC provided by Edelweiss
In the first book of the Shaw Confessions, the companion series to the New York Times bestselling Mara Dyer novels, old skeletons are laid bare and new promises prove deadly. This is what happens after happily ever after.

Everyone thinks seventeen-year-old Noah Shaw has the world on a string.

They’re wrong.

Mara Dyer is the only one he trusts with his secrets and his future.

And both are scared that uncovering the truth about themselves will force them apart.

He shouldn’t.

They’re right.

♫ ♫ ♫

No one could be as disappointed as me. I adored the Mara Dyer series, and while I was hesitant of this series at first, I was also excited because hello! It’s a series about Noah Shaw! About Noah Shaw, told by Noah Shaw. I really used to love Noah.

Now, after reading? I’m just meh. Nothing. I didn’t care about Noah or Mara or anyone else in the book. I didn’t care about the story. About anything. Everything was just… mediocre? Borderline annoying? I don’t know.

Most of the novel is slow. It’s not even that long, but it felt like I was waiting forever for something to happen, and by the time something did, I didn’t care. I couldn’t bring myself to. I think part of this has to do with the fact that I hated Noah’s point of view. I thought I would love it, but god, I just could not stand him. Guess it really hindered everything else lmao.

So! Overall, whatever. If you liked the Mara Dyer series, I’m pretty sure most of you will like this spin-off. I think it’s unnecessary but eh, who cares. 3 stars.

Buy links!

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