Saturday, 25 April 2015

These Broken Stars by Amie Kaufman & Meagan Spooner

Luxury spaceliner Icarus suddenly plummets from hyperspace into the nearest planet. Lilac LaRoux and Tarver Merendsen survive -- alone. Lilac is the daughter of the richest man in the universe. Tarver comes from nothing, a cynical war hero. Both journey across the eerie deserted terrain for help. Everything changes when they uncover the truth. 

The Starbound Trilogy: Three worlds. Three love stories. One enemy.

-- description --

I've heard amazing things about These Broken Stars but for me, unfortunately, it didn't live up to my expectations. This is a sciencefiction survival story and the thing that bothered me most was the fact that it is very reminiscent of the first book in The Under the Never Sky trilogy by Veronica Rossi. Since I read that entire trilogy already and quite liked it, I also prefer The Under the Never Sky trilogy above These Broken Stars. I felt that only the last hundred pages of These Broken Stars were different from Veronica Rossi's books. But they still weren't enough to really enjoy it. I am not sure yet if I'm going to read This Shattered World but it definitely won't be in the near future. This book certainly did have some good qualities but unfortunately even the characters were reminiscent of Under the Never Sky. Ultimately, I gave this book 3 stars although I doubted for a while if it didn't deserve a 2,5 more... If you are really interested in reading sciencefiction survival stories than I would say: go for it. If not, but you want to try it out, I would recommend The Under the Never Sky trilogy, even though I only gave the first book in the series 3 stars, the last two are completely worth it!

Wednesday, 22 April 2015

Gilded Ashes (Cruel Beauty Universe) by Rosamund Hodge

A romantic and fantastical reimagining of the classic Cinderella tale,Gilded Ashes is a novella by Rosamund Hodge set in the same world as the author's debut novel, Cruel Beauty.

Orphan Maia doesn't see the point of love when it only brings pain: Her dying mother made a bargain with the evil, all-powerful ruler of their world that anyone who hurt her beloved daughter would be punished; her new stepmother went mad with grief when Maia's father died; and her stepsisters are desperate for their mother's approval, yet she always spurns them. And though her family has turned her into a despised servant, Maia must always pretend to be happy, or else they'll all be struck dead by the curse.

Anax, heir to the Duke of Sardis, doesn't believe in love either—not since he discovered that his childhood sweetheart was only using him for his noble title. What's the point of pretending to fall in love with a girl just so she'll pretend to fall in love with him back? But when his father invites all the suitable girls in the kingdom to a masked ball, Anax must finally give in and select a wife.

As fate would have it, the preparations for the masquerade bring him Maia, who was asked by her eldest stepsister to deliver letters to Anax. Despite a prickly first encounter, he is charmed and intrigued by this mysterious girl who doesn't believe in love. Anax can't help wishing to see her again—and when he does, he can't help falling in love with her. Against her will, Maia starts to fall in love with him too. But how can she be with him when every moment his life is in danger from her mother's deadly bargain?

HarperTeen Impulse is a digital imprint focused on young adult short stories and novellas, with new releases the first Tuesday of each month.

-- description --

After I read Cruel Beauty I needed to read something short and this novella seemed like the perfect choice. A choice that definitely did not disappoint! I enjoyed it even more than Cruel Beauty. The reason for that is most likely because the story progressed a lot faster since it's a novella. And that was exactly what I was in the mood for. Since my mind still lingered in the Cruel Beauty universe I couldn't have picked anything else that would have suited me better. What I loved the most about Gilded Ashes was probably the fact that it was short and the action parts followed each other quite quickly, if you can call them 'action' parts. I have to admit Cinderella isn't one of my favourite fairy tales. I always thought she was kind of boring. However, since reading Cinder and Gilded Ashes I already like her a lot better.
I like Rosamund Hodge's writing style and originality. You never know how her stories will end, even though they're based on famous fairy tales. I love the fact that they're so much darker than their originals and I'm looking forward to reading Crimson Bound, her next book that comes out in May but I'll probably will have to wait a while before it comes out in paperback.

I highly recommend this original retelling of Cinderella if you enjoyed Cruel Beauty or Cinder by Marissa Meyer than this is a must read for you! 

Monday, 20 April 2015

Cruel Beauty by Rosamund Hodge

Graceling meets Beauty and the Beast in this sweeping fantasy about one girl's journey to fulfill her destiny and the monster who gets in her way-by stealing her heart.

Based on the classic fairy tale Beauty and the Beast, Cruel Beauty is a dazzling love story about our deepest desires and their power to change our destiny.

Since birth, Nyx has been betrothed to the evil ruler of her kingdom-all because of a foolish bargain struck by her father. And since birth, she has been in training to kill him.

With no choice but to fulfill her duty, Nyx resents her family for never trying to save her and hates herself for wanting to escape her fate. Still, on her seventeenth birthday, Nyx abandons everything she's ever known to marry the all-powerful, immortal Ignifex. Her plan? Seduce him, destroy his enchanted castle, and break the nine-hundred-year-old curse he put on her people.

But Ignifex is not at all what Nyx expected. The strangely charming lord beguiles her, and his castle-a shifting maze of magical rooms-enthralls her.

As Nyx searches for a way to free her homeland by uncovering Ignifex's secrets, she finds herself unwillingly drawn to him. Even if she could bring herself to love her sworn enemy, how can she refuse her duty to kill him? With time running out, Nyx must decide what is more important: the future of her kingdom, or the man she was never supposed to love.

-- description --

First of all, the cover is absolutely stunning! I actually regret not buying this book in hardback, but well, I'll survive. As I'm sure is quite evident from my many blog posts, fairy tale retellings are kind of my thing. I love Once Upon a Time and The Lunar Chronicles are one of my favourite young adult series! So it must not come as a surprise to you that I needed to read this book. And I wasn't disappointed. I didn't really know what to expect from this one, though. I've read some very good reviews and a heard it being described as a quite dark retelling of Beauty and the Beast. To say that I was intrigued is quite the understatement. Since I found out about this book, I've been pining for it. And now I've finally read it. Let me tell you, I could not put this book down! And since this was not the best of times to be so engrossed in a book, I still couldn't care less. I needed to finish this Cruel Beauty. So I did.
There are quite a lot of mythological references in this book, which I loved, since I'm currently taking a class on classical mythology (which is actually my favourite course this semester) I was able to understand all the details and references with ease.
I adored this book and I give it 4 (almost 4,5) out of 5 stars. I highly recommend this book if you are a fan of fairy tale retellings. Don't hesitate to pick it up!

Sunday, 19 April 2015


When Marine Nicolas Brody is hailed as a hero after he returns home from eight years of captivity in Iraq, intelligence officer Carrie Mathison is the only one who suspects that he may have been "turned".

-- description --

Ok, I must admit that the first three seasons of Homeland were not really my thing. Don't get me wrong, they weren't bad, I enjoyed them but still I had some issues with it. Especially the relationship between Carrie and Brody felt forced to me. I never liked them together. Season 4 was quite a surprise. I loved every bit of it. Very action packed and heartfelt. Even though I don't always agree with her, I like Carrie as a character. It's fantastic to have a female lead that is cool but imperfect. It's interesting to see how she copes with being bipolar and her stress inducing job. All this makes Carrie one character you shouldn't underestimate. She doesn't let her disease define her and that is what I enjoy about her. She has guts and isn't afraid to make hard decisions no matter the consequences, some of them are obviously the wrong choices but the way she copes with them (not always in the right way either) makes Carrie one of my current favourite characters. Especially since season 4. She is just so refreshing and original! And the magnificent Claire Danes is a perfect casting choice. I highly recommend this series and you should watch even if it's just to get to season 4, cause it's the best television I've seen in a while! And if I haven't convinced you yet about the awesomeness of this show, another strength both the show and Carrie have is that they are unpredictable, which is something I highly value in books and TV shows.

Thursday, 16 April 2015

Hart of Dixie

New Yorker and new doctor Zoe Hart accepts an offer from a stranger, Dr. Harley Wilkes, to work in his medical practice in Bluebell, Alabama. She arrives to find he has died and left half the practice to her in his will.
-- description --

Heart of Dixie is a very cute TV series I completely fell in love with. The characters are fantastic and you know you are in for a heartwarming episode every time. Sometimes there will even be some shocking twists you didn't see coming! It's a very enjoyable series. The season finale of season 4 looked like it could have been a series finale so fingers crossed for another season. 

Warning: season 4 spoilers below

In the previous season I didn't like the break-up of one of my favourite couples, Lavon and Annabeth. The main reason seemed to be that he wasn't over Lemon. Lavon and AB were such an adorable couple! I absolutely loved them! Now looking on how the series ended, I don't believe Lavon and Lemon are such a good match. I'm more of a fan of the George and AB coupling but I kind of hate AB has to leave Bluebell if she wants to be with George. That's a shitty situation. Furthermore, I wanted to see Lemon with a completely new character, but I guess, the writers wanted everyone to get a quick happy ending so the series could end with this season. It's a shame, though, the show still has so much potential.
Thank god, Zoe and Wade ended up together! They are the best couple in the series and I am very pleased with how things ended between the two. Still I would love to see more of them in the future. I repeat, fingers crossed!

Tuesday, 14 April 2015

Rebel Belle by Rachel Hawkins

Harper Price, peerless Southern belle, was born ready for a Homecoming tiara. But after a strange run-in at the dance imbues her with incredible abilities, Harper's destiny takes a turn for the seriously weird. She becomes a Paladin, one of an ancient line of guardians with agility, super strength and lethal fighting instincts.

Just when life can't get any more disastrously crazy, Harper finds out who she's charged to protect: David Stark, school reporter, subject of a mysterious prophecy and possibly Harper's least favorite person. But things get complicated when Harper starts falling for him—and discovers that David's own fate could very well be to destroy Earth.

With snappy banter, cotillion dresses, non-stop action and a touch of magic, this new young adult series from bestseller Rachel Hawkins is going to make y'all beg for more.

-- description --

This book was so much fun! I read somewhere that this book was a mix between Legally Blonde and Buffy the Vampire Slayer and that is absolutely true. Harper even reminds me a little of Lemon, Annabeth and Crickett from Hart of Dixie. That's how I see Harper and Bee anyway. I loved the friendship between those two, even though is was strained a little because of the secrets Harper needed to keep. Very excited about the ending, though! 

Rebel Belle is  funny, romantic, cute, sweet and very quick to read. I read this at exactly the right time as well. After reading The Lies of Locke Lamora, I needed something light and sweet to read. Everything fell into place and I am so happy I finally read this book. I gave this book four out of five stars. And now I have to wait a while till the paperback version of the second book in the series called Miss Mayhem comes out. Let me tell you, that is one book I'm highly anticipating! I highly recommend this book if you are looking for a fun light read!

Monday, 13 April 2015

The Lies of Locke Lamora by Scott Lynch

The Thorn of Camorr is said to be an unbeatable swordsman, a master thief, a friend to the poor, a ghost that walks through walls.

Slightly built and barely competent with a sword, Locke Lamora is, much to his annoyance, the fabled Thorn. And while Locke does indeed steal from the rich (who else would be worth stealing from?), the poor never see a penny. All of Locke's gains are strictly for himself and his tight-knit band of thieves. The Gentleman Bastards.

The capricious, colourful underworld of the ancient city of Camorr is the only home they have ever known. But now a clandestine war is threatening to tear it apart. Caught up in a murderous game, Locke and his friends are suddenly struggling just to stay alive...

-- description --

This book is simply fantastic. Locke Lamora is amazing, absolutely nothing can stop him! He can outsmart anyone! This book had it all, mystery, intrigue, violence, great unpredictable plot twists, and more. 

This is the first real adult fantasy novel I've read and I must say I really enjoyed it. I struggled a bit with the beginning of the book but after more or less one hundred pages I was hooked. It is unlike any other book I've ever read. It took me a while to get used to the writing style, especially the consistent switches between flashbacks and flash forwards annoyed me at times. Ultimately, I knew the flashbacks were important to the story and some I even preferred to the flash forwards. My main problem with the flashbacks was the fact that it stalled the action of the main part of the book. Every time the plot switched to flashbacks I had a little bit of trouble continuing, especially near the second half of the book. All in all, this book was amazing and very original. 

Although, this is a fantasy book, there aren't that many fantasy elements present in this book, they are mostly found in the descriptions of the setting and customs. So even if you don't normally read a lot of fantasy, this book will still be accessible to you. Don't hesitate to pick it up. It took me a while to read it but it was worth it! Ultimately, I gave it 4 out of 5 stars (to me 5 would be a bit to much, since I had to struggle to continue sometimes, especially with the flashbacks) and I highly recommend it to anyone! This is one of the books you have to read at least once in your life and I am so glad I achieved it and I will definitely continue this series! 

Tuesday, 7 April 2015


Tony Chu is a detective with a secret. A weird secret. Tony Chu is Cibopathic, which means he gets psychic impressions from whatever he eats. It also means he's a hell of a detective, as long as he doesn't mind nibbling on the corpse of a murder victim to figure out whodunit, and why. He's been brought on by the Special Crimes Division of the FDA, the most powerful law enforcement agency on the planet, to investigate their strangest, sickest, and most bizarre cases.

-- description --

This graphic novel is simply fantastic! Don't get me wrong, it is gory and gruesome but I liked it! A lot! It is something new and original which was exactly what I needed. The artwork is amazing and the pages are super glossy and shiny. I believe this is going to be one hell of a series and I can't wait to continue on with the next volumes! A small warning: this is definitely an adult graphic novel series. Chew was amazing and I gave it 5 out of 5 stars! 

Monday, 6 April 2015

The Indigo Spell by Richelle Mead

Sydney Sage is an Alchemist, one of a group of humans who dabble in magic and serve to bridge the worlds of humans and vampires. They protect vampire secrets--and human lives."
In the aftermath of a forbidden moment that rocked Sydney to her core, she finds herself struggling to draw the line between her Alchemist teachings and what her heart is urging her to do. Then she meets alluring, rebellious Marcus Finch--a former Alchemist who escaped against all odds, and is now on the run. Marcus wants to teach Sydney the secrets he claims the Alchemists are hiding from her. But as he pushes her to rebel against the people who raised her, Sydney finds that breaking free is harder than she thought. There is an old and mysterious magic rooted deeply within her. And as she searches for an evil magic user targeting powerful young witches, she realizes that her only hope is to embrace her magical blood--or else she might be next.

-- description --

Warning this review might contain spoilers for the Vampire Academy and Bloodlines series!

The third book in the Bloodlines series is the one I enjoyed the most up until this point. It contains a lot more romance. I liked the action and the mysteries a lot more too. I just couldn't put The Indigo Spell down! I loved the fact that Sydney is beginning to be more of an action heroine as well. Although, I absolutely love her as a smart heroine. Now she is both and it's awesome!

I gave this book 4 out of 5 stars! I enjoyed it immensely! If you are interested in reading this series or the Vampire Academy series don't hesitate! You are in for an action-packed and romantic time!