The Historian by Elizabeth Kostova Review 3/5

Overall Impression: A self-indulgent exploration of the well-known Dracula mystery in which the vampire has become oddly obsessed with hunting librarians.The Historian by Elizabeth Kostiva

The Historian has sat on my shelf unread for over seven years. Yeah, that’s pretty shameful! I picked up my battered copy for a whole 20p at a hospital book sale, unable to resist the fancy swirling writing and menacing blood droplets on its cover. Having been struck down with a seriously evil case of tonsillitis this week, and having already binge watched all of the Outlander Season 2 TV series, I decided it was time to pick up this neglected tome of a book and show it some love.
The best way I can sum up this novel is that it was a good, entertaining book…until suddenly it wasn’t.

 

To you my perceptive reader, I bequeath my history…
Late one night, exploring her father’s library, a young woman finds an ancient book and a cache of yellowing letters addressed ominously to ‘My dear and unfortunate successor.’ Her discovery plunges her into a world she never dreamed of – a labyrinth where the secrets of her father’s past and her mother’s mysterious fate connect to an evil hidden in the depths of history.

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Cover Reveal & Sneak Peak of Laini Taylor’s Strange the Dreamer!

strangethedreamer-fb-reveal-uk-us

Hello, hello everyone, exciting news today! I am extremely honoured and happy (to the point of hyperventilating) to have been picked by Hodder & Stoughton to help unveil the cover for Laini Taylor’s new upcoming book, Strange the Dreamer! Laini is most well known for her YA, Daughter of Smoke & Bone series. I personally haven’t read any of her books before, but they have always been on my MUST GET TO AT SOME POINT wishlist, because I have heard nothing but good things and her work seems like the sort of thing I normally LOVE. Strange the Dreamer is set to be released in September 2016. The UK cover can be seen pictured on the left, while the US one is on the right. And honestly, I can’t decide which one I like better, I’m kinda drooling. Have I piqued your interest yet? Here’s the blurb:

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Mini Reviews: Fantasy Novels with Female Heroines

Hello, everyone! I have more mini reviews for you. All of these novels were interesting in their individual ways and really deserve their own reviews, however, as I read them whilst trying to complete university, I never got around to chatting about them with you! Because it’s now been a while and my memory has gotten a little foggy (but I don’t want to ignore these novels completely), I thought mini reviews were the best solution. 🙂

Overall Impression: An engrossing adventure through a sophisticated, supernatural, criminal underworld.

The Mine Order by Samantha ShannonFirst off I would like to say that I cannot recommend this series enough! It’s brilliantly original, has a completely immersive world and Shannon’s writing is compelling. The Mime Order is book two in the dystopian series, The Bone Season, which follows Paige Mahoney, a dreamwalker able to manipulate spirits. It picks up where the first story left off, with Paige and other captives fleeing from their otherworldly prison Sheol 1, where they were treated like slaves by the Rephaites. They all go into hiding, seeking salvation where they can. But Paige soon finds herself on her government’s most wanted list, and is forced to go underground and rely on her old Mime Lord, Jaxon, and his numerous connections in the criminal underworld. However, she soon realises she’s trading one prison for another. Continue reading

Mini Reviews: A Song of George R.R. Martin’s Storytelling

Dunnnn, dunn, dun dun, dunnnn, dunn, dun, dun, dunn, dunn, dun, dun, dunn, dunn dun dun dunn dunn…
Yeahhh, I’ve pretty much had the Game of Thrones theme tune stuck in my head for the entire time it took me to write this post. I feel like I’m going slightly insane now! So yes, while Becky has been somewhat silent on the blog, in real life she has been busy, shifting through thousands of pages worth of Westeros, where dragons reign and people fight over a really uncomfortable chair. Woohoo! (Weirdos). After watching the season 5 shocker finale on TV, I was a little distraught and desperate for more George R.R. Martin, not to mention ANSWERS. I’ve also recently rewatched the entire show with the boyfriend because I am trying to educate him on all things nerdy (it’s working, slowly). All of this led to me feeling determined to try and catch up with the books in time for the release of season 6 and the next novel,Winds of Winter. So here are my reviews of books 3-5!

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Tag: My Life in Books

Umbreen from Read by Umbreen has been kind enough to tag me for the My Life in Books tag! I’m quite picky about which tags I do these days because there are a lot floating around, but this one seemed like great fun so I decided to give it a go. So, onwards dear readers!

Find a book for each of your initials.

beautiful creaturesAm I Normal Yet by Holly BourneDash and Lily's Book of Dares

This was actually a lot easier than I thought it would be! I guess I’m lucky to have initials that are on quite a few book titles. I picked Beautiful Creatures because despite the novel having many flaws and somewhat frustrating characters, it’s one of the most atmospherically gothic tales I’ve ever read and it also has epic library descriptions! I still have yet to finish this series, I really need to get back to it! Am I Normal Yet is a novel I read this year about a teen with an anxiety disorder who is going to weekly therapy sessions and trying to slowly come off medication. It’s one of the most accurate books about mental health I’ve ever read, and I hope to review it soon. 🙂 Finally, I picked Dash & Lily’s Book of Dares because it’s a Christmassy book about two teens running around New York City writing in a red notebook! Continue reading

Dual Review: In Which I Finish the House of Night Series!

Well, I have finally done it! I’ve managed to power through the end of the House of Night series and wow, it has been a struggle. When this series begun I really enjoyed it, but the combination of the writing going downhill and being dragged out, plus myself getting older and gaining more knowledge about writing and what makes a good story, on top of the YA genre making serious leaps and bound in the past few years, this series no longer stacks up for me. Still, after so long and committing to reading so many of the books I couldn’t abandon the series halfway and felt compelled to finish it, even though I wasn’t enjoying it anymore. So, here are my thoughts on the final novella and novel!

Overall Impression:  A somewhat enjoyable novella that provides some interesting back story into how vampires came to be.

Kalona’s Fall is the final House of Night novella and tells the stKalonas-Fall-by-P.C.-and-Kristin-Casory of Kalona, who is a fallen immortal tempted by darkness (basically an angel but he is never referred to in this way) that aids Neferet the main antagonist in the House of Night series in her quest to rule over others and gain power.
The writing in this novella is bad – but that is no surprise, because all of the writing in the House of Night novels makes me want to grab a red marker pen and scribble like a mad woman, but in Kalona’s Fall the Casts’ tendency to show rather than tell actually worked in their favour. As the novella focuses on how the Goddess Nyx, Earth, and its creatures came to be, the telling aspect actually gave the story an oddly historical/biblical feel, and at times reminded me of the story of Adam and Eve because of the matter of fact way things came into being despite it seeming incomprehensible. Continue reading

Lair of Dreams by Libba Bray Review 5/5

Overall Impression: A spellbinding second installment of The Diviners series which captivates and enthralls.

Lair of Dreams by Libba Bray“For dreams, too, are ghosts, desires chased in sleep, gone by morning.”
The Diviners by Libba Bray is easily one of the best books I’ve read in 2015, heck, it’s one of the most fun and entertaining books I’ve read in years! So naturally, I was looking forward to the release of its sequel with unabashed excitement, hoping with all my heart that it would be just as good. Well, I am happy to report that it was as awesome as, if not better than The Diviners and I lapped up every beautiful word. LIBBA BRAY IS QUEEEEEEEEENNNNNNNN and I bow down to her epic writing skills!
I would like to thank the lovely people at Atom Books for giving my a free ARC of Lair of Dreams in exchange for an honest review.

After a supernatural showdown with a serial killer, Evie O’Neill has outed herself as a Diviner. With her uncanny ability to read people’s secrets, she’s a media darling. It seems like everyone’s in love with New York City’s latest It Girl – their ‘Sweetheart Seer.’
But while Evie is enjoying the high life, her fellow Diviners Henry DuBois and Ling Chan will fight to keep their powers secret.
A malevolent force is at large, infecting people’s dreams and claiming victims in their sleep. At the edge of it all lurks a man in a stovepipe hat who has plans of nightmare proportions…

There are many, many reasons I adored Lair of Dreams, but the first reason has got to be Libba Bray’s writing. Continue reading