Wednesday, May 31, 2017

The Last of August

I think I've previously detailed my love of the adventures of Sherlock Holmes. I checked the books out from my elementary and junior high schools. I watched the Robert Downey Jr. remakes and tried to watch Elementary and did watch the BBC Sherlock. I've been to 221B Baker Street and have stood outside the building which served as the BBC's 221B. I analyzed some of the stories in college and debated the merits of The Speckled Band. So, while I don't know every Sherlock story by heart, I have a fair understanding of Doyle's work, both original and remade. Not to mention, I have a soft spot for the stories. So I enjoyed A Study in Charlotte much more than others seemed to. I found the banter delightful, as well as the references to stories I'd read before. The Last of August was received more poorly than the first in the series, but that did not deter me.

Retrieved from Goodreads
After barely making it through school alive, Jamie Watson and Charlotte Holmes are spending winter break in Europe with each other's families. But what starts as a tense holiday turns into a dangerous case of art fraud and kidnapping. Jamie and Charlotte race to discover the culprit before someone turns up dead, teaming up with some former enemies along the way.

I'll admit to not following the particulars of the investigation all that closely. This book was read on audiobook while I cleaned and cooked and went about my day. But art fraud is always a good story in my book, having watched every episode of White Collar. The banter between Charlotte and Jamie was back, though in a less interesting setting in my opinion. Jamie is seething with emotions for Charlotte that she does not understand or reciprocate in a way he wants. He lashes out by being stupid but also heroic. Charlotte hides things and is self-destructive and brilliant. They clearly have a loving, toxic relationship that I found interesting to watch unfold. The scenes from Charlotte's point of view were a particular joy, and a nice break from Jamie's unrelenting whining. My favorite parts with Jamie were when he was trying to be someone else, trying to think like Charlotte and never quite getting there. I did not love the ending, because it lacked the Holmes monologue on how everything fit together. Maybe it's a cheap ploy, but I always loved the debunking of the case with Holmes's of course attitude. I also did not love how Charlotte's rape was dealt with. Jamie whines about how the emotional toll of the rape is affecting him, but doesn't really seem to understand that in this case he should bugger off with his annoyance. But while these things bugged me, I still enjoyed Jamie and Charlotte's bickering, and will be reading the last book in the series.

Goodreads Rating: 4 Stars (more like 3.75)
Up Next: Talking as Fast as I Can by Lauren Graham

Tuesday, May 30, 2017

Lady Midnight

I have read many of Cassandra Clare's books. All of the Mortal Instruments, all of the Infernal Devices. I just can't keep up with it all. I haven't read the Bane Chronicles, and I'm sure there are some graphic novels out there. I did see the City of Bones movie, but I haven't watched the TV series. I have read some of the novellas, but not all of them. In fact, I wasn't even sure I'd read the Dark Artifices books. I hadn't loved the last few books in the Mortal Instruments series. But I thought, hey, I'll give it a shot. If I don't like it, then that's a sign I should stop reading Clare's books.

Retrieved from Goodreads
It's been five years since the Dark War ended, bringing Shadowhunters to the brink of extinction. Against the odds, Emma Carstairs and Julian Blackthorn survived. Their parents did not. Now Emma lives at the Blackthorn institute in Los Angeles with her parabatai, and Julian is the guardian of his four younger siblings. Emma never gave up her quest to figure out who killed her parents. The Clave thinks they were casualties of the Dark War, but Emma disagrees. When a series of murders happen around LA that bear a striking resemblance to her parents', she thinks she's finally found the lead that will take her to their killer.

Not bad! I mean, Clare's books are, at their base, very readable. There's lots of fun, specific detail, there's good banter, and a very fleshed out world. There are always some laughs and some twists, and some tortured forbidden love. I'm down with all of this! What bothered me about the Mortal Instruments was that there were only so many ways to keep Jace and Clary apart, and by the back half of the series they were getting ridiculous. Lady Midnight corrects that a bit, and understands that its readers are older now and can handle some more mature content (you can guess what some of it is). My favorite part was how Julian became a parents to his siblings. I think that portion of the book was very well written, and I felt his frustration at not having a childhood, at having to be a parent all the time when sometimes he just wanted someone to lift a bit of the burden. But also that fierce protectiveness at the thought of anyone hurting his siblings. There are some quibbles though. This book did not have to be as long as it did. Now, if this were a Sarah J. Maas book, I'd be saying bring it on. But since I'm not a devoted Clare fan, the length here felt excessive. I also felt that the conflict with Julian and Emma falling in love while being parabatai was interesting, but how Emma chose to mitigate the disaster was forced. The instances of Julian being jealous of his brother flirting with Emma felt like they were done specifically to force the conflict at the end of the book rather than because there was any reason for Julian to feel jealous, or for Mark to flirt with Emma. Other than that, it was a fun read! I think I'll grab a copy of Lord of Shadows when it comes out in paperback.

Goodreads Rating: 4 Stars
Up Next: The Last of August by Brittany Cavallaro

Monday, May 29, 2017

Rites of Passage

Now here's a book that infuriated me on levels completely separate than those I detailed in yesterday's review of How to Love. I mean, whoa, I have rarely felt such rage while reading a book that I actually have to walk away from it for a while to cool down. But we'll get to that. My family is a military one. Cousins, grandparents, aunts, my dad, all have served in some branch of the armed services. My general lack of physical prowess and the presence of exercise-induced asthma closed that door for me before it ever really opened. I'm much more of a starry-eyed bookworm. I would last ten minutes in boot camp before running home and curling up in a soft blanket with hot chocolate. So while I couldn't empathize with Sam on that level, oh boy did I end up empathizing with her.

Retrieved from Goodreads
Sam McKenna is an army brat and has never been able to turn down a bet. And it was a bet that led her to become part of the first class of female recruits at Denmark Military Academy. She knows it's going to be hard, that her fellow recruits won't like the idea of a female being at the academy. But what she didn't expect was a concentrated effort to make her and every other female recruit quit. She needs to uncover the conspiracy before she's forced out of the DMA. Or worse.

It's a pretty simple premise. Girl in new environment struggles to survive. But oh my word does it work. From day one, Sam is subject to horrific hazing ranging from subtle to outright torture. And she takes it and takes it, never breaking where people can see her. There is such a rich understanding of military dynamics, and so many different angles that are deployed in Hensley's book. Family, grief, friendship, loss, camaraderie. And over everything there is a sense of tension, of fear. Very few contemporary YA novels have had my heart racing at the climax. But this book had me so tense I had to take shallow breaths. And the rage, oh the rage I felt reading every single sexist, discriminatory thing that Sam had to endure. She couldn't slip even once without ten people pointing at it as a reason she didn't deserve to be at the academy. She couldn't do too well without it making her a target. She could not win, and she could never show weakness. It was horrific and I felt it all. There were only a few minor things about this book that made me knock it down a star. I did not like how the romance portion of the book wrapped up, although the book was never about the romance. It still bugged me how it was basically a throw-away paragraph. And I wanted to get a bit more inside Sam's head. I wanted to know more things about her that went beyond the DMA. She never mentioned friends, or many experiences of being an army brat. And I wanted that element to flesh her out even more. Overall, I loved this book, and I'm sad to see Hensley hasn't had anything else publish since its release.

Goodreads Rating: 4 Stars
Up Next: Lady Midnight by Cassandra Clare

Sunday, May 28, 2017

How to Love

I'm a sucker for a nice romantic story. I like fluff and sweetness and first kisses and final declarations of love as the sun sets in the background. But. I like romantic stories if they're done well. I don't like forced romance, or rote romance or boring romance. And when I saw How to Love had such a great rating on Goodreads and was on sale? I thought I'd hit the jackpot.

Retrieved from Goodreads
Before it happened, Reena was a girl in love with a boy who didn't know what he wanted. He was the bad boy and she was the good girl and that was how life had always been and always would be. After it happened, Reena became a single mother whose dreams and been put on hold. She wasn't going to college. She wasn't with the boy of her dreams. And she wasn't going to travel the world. And then one day Sawyer waltzed back into town and those dreams began to stir.

This book. Honestly, if it hadn't been for the fact that I listened to the audiobook, I don't think I would have been able to finish it because my eyes would have rolled out of my head. I'll give credit where credit is due though--How to Love is easy to read. The writing style is quick, and the jumping back and forth between Before and After sections is well done. But that's where my praise ends. I really hate giving books bad reviews because I know, intimately, how hard it is to write a book. But I had fundamental problems with the characters. Reena is awful. She cheats to be with Sawyer. Twice. Twice! And then acts shocked when people get mad at her about it. She also has no spine. Sawyer treats her like crap and she blames herself. Now, this could be an interesting part of her character. But the books treats it like it's adorable. Reena treats her friends like crap as well. And when Sawyer waltzes back into her life after disappearing without a word to anyone, she immediately falls in puppy love with him because...honestly, I don't know. Sawyer may have been the bad boy type, but usually that masks a tortured sweetie. Here, he's just a jerk. He gets mad that Reena hasn't forgiven him for skipping town without saying goodbye...after he's been in town less than a week. He treats her horribly in the Before section as well, and I see basically zero reason why these two characters should be together except that they're both horrible to each other and everyone in their lives. The only thing that redeemed Reena for me was how she stood up to her quasi mother-in-law when she pretends she's been involved in her granddaughter's life. Other than that, I did not like this book.

Goodreads Rating: 2 Stars
Up Next: Rites of Passage by Joy N. Hensley

Saturday, May 27, 2017


After the sadness of Between Shades of Gray, it was time for something a little lighter. I chose Dreamology by Lucy Keating as my palate cleanser. Now, this was a book that I went back and forth on before buying. I generally trust Goodreads ratings when picking out books, and while it had a so-so average rating, the top reviews seemed incredibly positive! I thought I'd give it a shot. What's the worst that could happen?

Retrieved from Goodreads
Alice always has wonderful dreams where she explores the world with Max. But that's all they were--dreams. That is, until she starts going to a new school and discovers that there's a real Max, and he's almost nothing like Dream Max. Suddenly, life gets very confusing, and the dream world is bleeding into her real world in more ways than one. Not only does Alice want to discover why she's been dreaming about Max and how much of it was real, but she needs to before she can't discern reality from fiction any longer.

I'll admit--awesome premise. Seriously, for someone who has incredibly vivid dreams, there's something so cool about the idea that you could meet someone in your dreams that turns out to be real. I really enjoyed the dream aspects of this book, particularly when it went in a direction I wasn't expecting. I was thinking this was going to be a mild urban fantasy, but when it stayed incredibly contemporary it was a pleasant surprise. Now, did it stick the landing? No. The driving conflict of the story is that the dream world is bleeding into Alice and Max's reality as a result of their being part of experimental sleep treatments when they were children. And the resolution sort of sucked. It was nowhere near as explained as I'd have liked. And Max...I went back and forth on whether or not I liked Max. And I'm still not sure. He essentially cheated on his girlfriend with Alice, which I am never okay with. And the stuff about Alice's absent mom? I don't know, but I wanted Alice to realize that she was not required to have a relationship with her just because they share DNA. This is a plot thread that increasingly annoys me as I get older. Just because someone is biologically related to you does not mean you have to forgive them for the horrible things they do. This was something that really bugged me in The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight. But I digress. The banter has some great moments, and I really enjoyed the sleep treatment portion up until the resolution. And the story gets an A+ for premise.

Goodreads Rating: 4 Stars (more like 3.5)
Up Next: How to Love by Katie Cotugno

Friday, May 26, 2017

Between Shades of Gray

You'd think someone with a bachelor's degree in history would read more historical fiction. I'm not really sure why I don't read more of it. Whenever I do, I quite enjoy it. But more often than not, my hand strays to the sci-fi/fantasy shelves. However, when I do read historical fiction, it is usually set in World War II. So it should be of no surprise that I've had my eye on Between Shades of Gray for a long time. I read Sepetys's books in reverse order, starting with Salt to the Sea. Luckily, this didn't make much of a difference since they are standalones!

Retrieved from Goodreads
Lina was a normal girl with a normal family until the NKVD arrived in the night. Now she's a prisoner in Stalin's work camps in Siberia, struggling each day just to survive. Through years of hardship, Lina protects her family and tries to live to the next day through her art and desire to see her father again.

Sepetys's books are well researched and focus on details of World War II that are often overlooked. While most of the world knows about the Holocaust, fewer people know of the atrocities Stalin perpetrated on the people of the USSR. In that respect, I commend Sepetys. Lina's story is one of sorrow and never ending drudgery laced with terror. Her family slowly leaks away from her, as does her innocence. She is accused of being a pig for living in conditions she is forced into. And through it all, she tries to document the atrocities so that one day they will be uncovered. I felt genuine horror when Lina and her mother were forced to stand in a hole they dug while an NKVD officer shot at the walls around them until they were nearly drowning in dirt. But at the same time, I never truly felt like I was in Lina's mind. It felt slightly distant. I also noted how similar the ending was to the one in Salt to the Sea. It didn't feel like a true resolution. But then, how can there be a resolution for something so terrible? I do enjoy Sepetys's books, but they don't hit me in the gut as much as they probably should.

Goodreads Rating: 3 Stars (More like 3.5)
Up Next: Dreamology by Lucy Keating

Thursday, May 25, 2017

Yes Please

We're taking a break from our regularly scheduled programming for a review of Yes Please by Amy Poehler. I'm not usually a memoir person. In fact, I think this is the second memoir I've ever read. But I'm a huge Parks and Rec fan, and several coworkers and friends have told me how hilarious this book was. I also want to note that I listened to the audiobook, which was narrated by Poehler herself and probably had a big influence on how I perceived it. Since this is a memoir, I'm not going to do a description of the contents can probably guess what it's about.

Retrieved from Goodreads
This book was really quite enjoyable. It was funny and sharp, and kind. There's a lot of talk about how you just need to be you, as long as you aren't a jerk. Poehler does talk about her time on Parks and Rec and SNL, which were the only couple things I knew her from. There were some laugh out loud moments, and some really funny parts where Poehler talks about how writing is the worst and she doesn't know why she agreed to do this book and can't someone else write it for her? Speaking as a writer, I totally get it. I have been in a horrific writing slump and have been trying to make up for it by reading copiously. Writing does suck. But it's also pretty cool. On the whole, I really enjoyed learning more about Poehler's life, though she doesn't let you in on any huge secrets. She fully admits that she doesn't like telling strangers about her personal life, which I also understand. Other reviews pointed out how scattered the book is, jumping from topic to topic without much connection between them. If I had read the physical book rather than listening to the audiobook, I think I would agree. But Poehler's conversational tone and style made the experience a wonderful one. Can I have another season of Parks and Rec please?

Goodreads Rating: 4 Stars
Up Next: Between Shades of Gray by Ruta Sepetys

Wednesday, May 24, 2017

The Siren

I have read all of Kiera Cass's books. I enjoyed The Selection for the fluffy beauty pageant it was, and lamented when it tried to get into deeper themes in its dystopian setting. I even gave the extension of the series, The Heir and The Crown a try. Much like The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight which I reviewed a few days ago, I went into this book with expectations that were, if not low, then not exceptionally high. I wanted a quick, fluffy romance in a different setting. And that's what I got!

Retrieved from Goodreads
Kahlen is a Siren, bound to do the Ocean's bidding for one hundred years. She uses her voice to lure ships to their doom, and she hates the death she causes. She must never use her voice around humans, for it will bewitch them to their deaths. And she was resigned to her fate until she met Akinli, a kind boy who isn't scared away by Kahlen's silence. But how can they ever be together when Kahlen is an ageless Siren with a voice of death, and Akinli is human?

For a book that touted its romance, Kahlen and Akinli spend a grand total of a little over a day together. They make cake, and they walk around town. But they are soulmates, apparently. I must admit, I became much less interested in Kahlen and Akinli, and much more invested in Kahlen's relationship with her sisters and the Ocean. How the different sirens dealt with their ageless, silent lives was fascinating. There was some disturbingly blasé murdering, which left me with a bad taste in my mouth. But the love between the sisters, and the love of the timeless Ocean for her daughters was very nice. The Maybe if this book were longer, and if Kahlen and Akinli had spent more time together, would I have bought that they were basically dying of heartache. And poison. But mostly heartache. So I had to knock this book down a star for how it wrapped up, particularly since Kahlen wasn't very active in the decision. But overall, a quick fluffy read that was like a digestif after A Court of Wings and Ruin.

Goodreads Rating: 3 Stars
Up Next: Yes Please by Amy Poehler

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

A Court of Wings and Ruin

I have loved Sarah J. Maas's books ever since I read Crown of Midnight. I did enjoy Throne of Glass, but in a tentative way. It felt a little like a fledgling bird, still trying to get the wind under its wings. Crown of Midnight solved that problem and had me glued to the page. And with every book that followed, I became more and more invested in Maas's characters. Aelin, Elide, Chaol, and more. And then I saw that she was writing a new series, A Court of Thorns and Roses. Initially, I was upset. Did this mean the release dates for the next TOG book would be pushed out? How could this be happening? But at this point I was such a Maas fan that I couldn't be too sad. So I dove into ACOTAR, and then ACOMAF, and fell in love with a whole new cast of characters. But then another problem presented itself. Although I had read eight of Maas's books, she had yet to finish a series. What if she sucked at wrapping it up? That is a lot of time invested in one person's books that could end up being disappointing. Well, how did Maas fare?

Retrieved from Goodreads
Feyre has rejoined the Spring Court, intent on bringing it down from the inside. Her old love, Tamlin, sold out her family and his court to Hybern to get her back, and now the king has a foothold from which to take down the entire world Feyre has come to love. With the help of her mate, Rhysand, friends Amren, Cassian, Azriel, and Mor, Feyre must gather any support they can in order to defeat Hybern and the darkness that threatens to consume Prythian.

This book. Wow. I Did it stall in some places? Yes. Was I a teeny tiny bit disappointed by how nicely it wrapped up? Yes. But did I adore every single character and were my eyes glued to the page? Absolutely. Several former plot threads are picked up again and tied into the main story. Feyre and Rhys are so damn good for each other, though the message of choice is a little like a battering ram. There are so many different representations of sexuality without judgment. They don't all stick the landing perfectly, but it is so good to see those representations presented as a fact of life rather than a huge revelation that there might be something different than one guy and one girl who kiss once and end up together forever. Oh, and Feyre's sisters end up being delightful additions to the large cast. Nesta and Elain, so distinct from each other and so obviously related. The building up of each character as having a distinct past, a different thing to gain/lose from the outcome of the war, and a different style of blew me away. And then it all comes together in the end with some badass fighting, mythology, and heartbreak. Well done, Maas, well done. It might not be a perfect book, but I don't think I would want it to be. If there's one thing this book shows you, it's that trying to be exactly what other people want is no way to live your life.

Now where is Tower of Dawn?

Goodreads Rating: 5 Stars
Up Next: The Siren by Kiera Cass

Monday, May 22, 2017

The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight

Sometimes I'm in the mood for something light and fluffy. Don't get me wrong, I love me some dark fantasy with heart-shattering plot twists and brutal mysteries. In fact, I'm pretty sure that's what my next review will be about! But there are also days when I want a cheery little romance where the guy gets the girl and they all live happily ever after with swoon-worthy kisses. And fitting the bill? The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight by Jennifer E. Smith.

Retrieved from Goodreads
Hadley is on her way to London to watch her dad marry someone who is not her mom. When she misses her flight, it turns out to be fate in more than one way. Because the flight she ends up on has Oliver, a British boy who makes her forget the horrible day she's about to have.

Really, there's no need for a longer description than that. Hadley meets Oliver, they flirt, get separated at the airport, and then they meet again. It's a very short book that's both cute and slightly annoying. It's cute because who doesn't want to meet a smart, kind British boy who lies about being your boyfriend so he can sit next to you on a transatlantic flight? It's cute because some of the banter is just plain adorable. It's cute because it's really trying to be British. It's cute because it took be back to the days when I would analyze every single thing a guy said, parsing it to see if he secretly liked me. Ah, youth. So this book does make you smile, and for us older folks, a little nostalgic. But it's also annoying. Because Hadley's dad is a jerk. Who marries someone that has never met his daughter? Who doesn't see his daughter for a year and basically ditches his family without even a "sorry"? Who forces his daughter to be a bridesmaid in said wedding? I don't know, but even the heartfelt talk between Hadley and her dad at the end did not make me at all sympathetic toward him. He was just having his cake, eating it too, and then making Hadley wash all the dishes. But at the same time, I squirmed a bit when Hadley basically forced the wedding party to put everything on hold so she could have a weepy talk with her dad. Eh. It couldn't wait until afterward? Overall, it was a light read that was nothing more than I expected. I knew it wasn't going to have Kristan Higgins levels of romance and character interactions. It didn't knock my socks off, but it did make me smile a bit. And at the end of the day, that's mostly what I'm after from contemporary romance novels.

Goodreads Rating: 3 Stars
Up Next: A Court of Wings and Ruin by Sarah J. Maas

Sunday, May 21, 2017


When I first saw Susan Dennard's Something Strange and Deadly series, I was wary but also excited. I mean, zombies in the Civil War? I thought it would either be one of the best things I'd ever read, or the worst. And somewhat unfortunately, it hit somewhere in the middle. I wanted more Civil War, I wanted deeper character exploration...I wanted more of everything. I was left sort of disappointed and missing what made it a favorite for a lot of people. Nevertheless, when I saw the copy and cover of Truthwitch, I thought I'd give it a go. Maybe I couldn't get into her other series because I've never been a zombie person. Maybe having a fantasy focus instead of sort of fantasy/steampunk would appeal to me more.

Retrieved from Goodreads
The young witches Safiya and Iseult have no interest in being linchpins in the coming war between countries. But it seems they'll be dragged into it nonetheless. Safi is a rare Truthwitch who can tell when people are lying. Her skills are coveted by the king, and when she is promised to him in marriage, she flees with the aid of her uncle. Chased by a Bloodwitch, the threadsisters put their fate in the hands of Prince Merik, whose nation's future depends on delivering them safely under order of Safi's uncle. All Safi and Iseult want is their freedom, but with everyone after their abilities or their heads, that may not be possible.

I'll start by saying that I did like this book more than Something Strange and Deadly. Where those stories spanned weeks and didn't manage to make me feel the character relationships, this story sidesteps this problem by taking place over a grand total of maybe three days. No, I did not really care about Safi and Merik's romance. I did care much more about the friendship between Iseult and Safi. I never really bonded with the political intrigue going on, though I did love the concept of bargains being written on spelled paper where if one person doesn't fulfill their end of the deal, their name disappears. The deal that Safi be delivered without having spilled blood made for an interesting dynamic, though I wonder if the deal might have been more interesting if it included not letting her spill blood. It seems to me that interpretation still fits the wording and would have annoyed Safi even more. All in all, it was a mixed bag of interesting characters and a world with a lot of potential. I hope it gets expanded on in Windwitch.

Goodreads Rating: 3 Stars
Up Next: The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight by Jennifer E. Smith

Saturday, May 20, 2017


Hi, all! Sorry I dropped off the face of the earth there for a while. Once again, life got crazy. I mean, seriously, I have a whiteboard calendar on my wall and it is covered in things I have to do. But on the plus side, I've gotten into a good reading rhythm lately that's resulted in me having many many reviews to share with you! So let's get right to it with Flamecaster by Cinda Williams Chima.

Retrieved from Goodreads
Ash is the son of the queen of the Fells. Forced into hiding after a series of murders shakes the queendom, he sets his sights on revenging his family. At the same time, Jenna Bandelow has lived a life of hardship. Forced to hide her gender to evade capture by people who want her dead for rebellion, Jenna is thrust into the world of political intrigue when a faraway queen demands her as payment for troops in support of the war. Eventually, Ash and Jenna's stories collide in the capital of Arden which has been waging war against the Fells for over a decade.

Oh this was such a hard choice for me. I had such mixed results with Chima's books. I adored her slow-building plots in the Seven Realms series. But I've been tepid about every book in her Heir Chronicles. So when I saw that the author was returning to the Seven Realms for a story following the children of Hans and Raisa, I near-on did a jig. The book starts with something so awful and sad that I dare not speak of it because I refuse to believe it's true. It was such an evil evil thing to do to the readers, which I commend, but still makes me very sad. From there...things get sporadic. There are several jumps in time which make things feel oddly rushed for such a long book. I felt like I was being told things were important and slow building, without actually getting to see it. Perhaps I am spoiled by Brandon Sanderson's Stormlight Archive, but I want to be shown how relationships build, not told about it. But, despite this odd rushed sense, I did enjoy the mystery surrounding Jenna. I suspected what her powers were long before they were revealed, but it was still enjoyable getting there. Her and Ash's relationship didn't make me swoon, but it was sweet. I know the next book in the series follows a different set of characters, so I understand the need to build the romance here faster than in the Seven Realms series. And just when I was thinking the book was moderately good, the ending put it squarely in the "good" column. So I will definitely be reading Shadowcaster.

Goodreads Rating: 4 Stars (probably closer to 3.75)
Up Next: Truthwitch by Susan Dennard

Friday, May 19, 2017

6th Blogoversary

It's hard to believe that 6 years ago, I wrote my first blog post. Back then I had just finished high school, had one book to my name, and thought this blog would be better focused on my clearly excellent writing advice. Since then, I've gone to university and graduated with degrees in history and English. I've written five more books, one of which was published briefly. I've worked a plethora of publishing jobs before settling down in my current job as a marketer at a publishing house. I adore my job and the people I work with and the books I get to help shepherd into the world.

This blog is now about reviews, a way to explain to myself (and obviously you all) why I do and do not like certain books. I used to only read young adult, and while that's still the primary genre I read,  more and more I'm branching into adult books as well.

I don't have much else to say here, but I want to thank everyone who reads this blog. I know I disappear for a while sometimes (like last month) but I really do enjoy coming here and talking about books.

Happy blogoversary!