Books · Review

Review: Strange The Dreamer by Laini Taylor

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Hey guys!
I haven’t done a review in over a month, I have a backlog on ones to write as I haven’t had much time due to uni. Hopefully, I’ll be able to get them up soon!


“It was impossible, of course. But when did that ever stop any dreamer from dreaming.”


Synopsis:
The dream chooses the dreamer, not the other way around – and Lazlo Strange, war orphan and junior librarian, has always feared that his dream chose poorly. Since he was five years old he’s been obsessed with the mythic lost city of Weep, but it would take someone bolder than he to cross half the world in search of it. Then a stunning opportunity presents itself, in the person of a hero called the Godslayer and a band of legendary warriors, and he has to seize his chance to lose his dream forever.

What happened in Weep two hundred years ago to cut it off from the rest of the world? What exactly did the Godslayer slay that went by the name of god? And what is the mysterious problem he now seeks help in solving?

The answers await in Weep, but so do more mysteries – including the blue-skinned goddess who appears in Lazlo’s dreams. How did he dream her before he knew she existed? And if all the gods are dead, why does she seem so real?


Plot:
The plot is so hard to explain without giving everything away…
It’s a slow but interesting plot, not much happens yet it’s so intriguing you need to keep reading. Slow stuff isn’t my usual jam, this was really slow, like so slow but I managed to hold interest and finish it and I’m glad I did.
Laini’s writing is beautiful, magical and fluffy as always. It such a joy to read! I don’t even have to understand what’s going on and I still love it. Her writing style is so unique, no one else seems to have a similar writing style.

If you don’t like fluffy writing and tons of description, forget this book completely; you’ll hate it. Everything is so flowery it makes the book and getting to the point so much slower. I’m surprised I even liked it, since usually, I despise slow plots, preferring fast pacing.

Also, Insta-Love. If you hate that trope, don’t bother. Lazlo experiences Insta-Love about half way through.

The story is pretty damn weird, very unique and interesting. I wouldn’t know how to describe this book if I were asked to. It’s just something you need to read for yourself and figure out. I’m not even sure it fits into a genre, it’s almost its own genre.

Characters:
Lazlo Strange: I loved him! He’s adorable. I love a nerdy (/relatable to me) character. His was my favourite perspective to read from. I liked him as a character, he is such a good person. It’s a nice change for me, as I do tend to like villains/anti-heroes/questionable characters. I really enjoyed reading from his perspective.

Sarai: Introduced later on in the book, so I’m not going to go into detail because spoilers! She wasn’t my favourite. I liked her, she was okay. I was interested in her story and where she is from and stuff like that but she didn’t blow my mind. I wouldn’t class her as a new favourite or anything. 

 Rating: 4 Stars!


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Books · Top 5 Wednesday

Largest Books on My TBR | Top 5 Wednesday

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Top 5 Wednesday is a weekly meme, GoodReads group here with all the topics + discussion!
This week’s topic is: Largest Books on TBR

Surprisingly, I don’t have many big books on my TBR. I was going to make this list all the books over 500 pages from my owned TBR but it turns out; I don’t have enough. hahaha
I’m not one to shy away from big books so, I’m actually a bit shocked. I kept the books as near to 500 pages as I could find.

Starting with the largest:

1) The Dark Vault by V.E. Schwab – 697 pages

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This will actually be my next read! I’m so excited to read more VE Schwab after reading her Villains duology! This is technically two books but it’s a bind up so it’s pretty big!


2) Muse of Nightmares By Laini Taylor – 514 pages

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Hopefully, I’ll get to this soon. I enjoyed Strange the Dreamer even though it was slow and took me ages to read. I’ve heard nothing but good things about this so I can’t wait to read it!


3) Cloud Atlas by David Mitchell – 529 pages

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This has been on my TBR for a while. It’s pretty big but the font is SO tiny; I always put off reading it for that reason. It sounds good but confusing and I’ve heard mixed things about it. No idea when I’ll get around to picking this up.


4) Magnus Chase The Sword of Summer by Rick Riordan 497 pages

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I meant to read this back in the summer, I feel like it would be best read then; since summer is literally in the title. *Hopefully* I will pick it up next spring/summer.


5) The School for Good and Evil by Soman Chainani – 488 pages

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This is a fairly recent addition to my TBR but I am hoping to get to this soon; when I’m next in the mood for a middle grade/ light-hearted read. I’ve heard good things about this series and I’m excited to start it!



Have you read any of these books? Let me know what you think if you have!

Also, let me know the biggest book on your TBR!

 



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Books · Recommendations

Binge-Worthy YA Books! #1

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Hey guys! Happy Saturday 🙂
I have been doing a lot of reviews lately since I’ve been in uni I pre-wrote a lot of posts before I started and most of them were reviews; I thought I’d change it up today.
I finally had a little time to write so I thought I’d give some recommendations!

If I have reviews for any of the books mentioned they’ll be linked! If you click on the title it will take you to the Goodreads page of the first book so you can read the synopsis if you’d like. 


 

Throne of Glass by Sarah J Maas

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Now all the books are out in the Throne of Glass series, it would be a perfect time to binge them. SJM is a master at addictive writing and creating great characters that you are instantly invested in.

Reviews:  AB | TOG | COM | HOF | QOS


The Raven Cycle by Maggie Stiefvater

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Her beautiful writing style is just a dream to read. The characters are so relatable and flawed but you just love them? The friendship between all the character is just lovely and makes you wish you were part of the gang.

Reviews: TRB | TDT


Daughter of Smoke and Bone by Laini Taylor

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Laini Taylor’s beautiful lyrical and descriptive writing style is so unique and amazing, it’s an absolute dream to read. I flew through these books, they’re addictive and the characters are just great. This is probably the only time I’ve enjoyed insta-love and heavy romance. I was rooting for the relationships from start to finish.

Review of the whole series


Graceling by Kristin Cashore

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Underrated series! I love the world in these books, it’s such a cool concept and I wish there were more. Each book is a standalone kinda, but they all fit together and are brought together in book 3.  Hardly anyone talks about these books anymore but they’re so cool and definitely worth a read!


Spellslinger by Sebastien De Castell

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This is such a fun series, I cannot rave enough about these books!
I listened to the first two on audiobook, which was an amazing experience; the narrator is SO good at doing the voices. It was like a full-on performance, I highly recommend the audiobooks, if you’re looking for a new one! I was lucky enough to get books 3 + 4 as ARCs! I have reviews for these which I will link:
Reviews: Spellinger | Charmcaster | Soulbinder


Let me know any YA books you think are binge-worthy! I am always looking to add to my endless TBR! 


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Books · Top 5 Wednesday

Favourite Magic Systems | Top 5 Wednesday

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Top 5 Wednesday is a weekly meme, GoodReads group here with all the topics + discussion!
This week’s topic is: Favourite Magic Systems

 

1) Mistborn by Brandon Sanderson
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Allomancy is the magic system feature in Mistborn, Allomancers have the ability to consume metals and gain abilities from different metals. Mistborns can consume all metals, whereas, Mistings can only consume one type. The Magic system is really cool and there are other types in there too, they’re really well explained and easy to follow!


2) Lightbringer by Brent WeeksImage result for lightbringer brent weeks covers
The magic system in this universe is Drafting, it uses the spectrum of light to draw luxin, different colours to different things. Most drafters can draft one or two colours but the Prism can draft all colours. There is a catch – the more you use your power the quicker you die. It’s such an interesting magic system, great series and so underrated!


3) Warbreaker by Brandon Sanderson
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Another Brandon Sanderson magic system (his systems are honestly the best ever). In Warbreaker, the system is known as Breaths, everyone is born with one breath, however, you can buy more but it has to be given willingly – you cannot steal it. The more breath you have the better and more vivid everyone appears, breath can also be temporarily put into inanimate objects, making them come to life.


4) Daughter of Smoke and Bone by Laini Taylor

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This one is a little hard to explain but basically, reincarnation is the ‘magic’ of the chimaera but also there’s a running theme that magic comes at a cost.


5) Star Wars
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Obviously, I had the mention the Force. I feel like everyone knows the Force, so no need to explain too much and if you don’t… who even are you!?
I love the spectrum of the Force, the good, the bad and the balance. Plus, if having the Force is needed for owning a Lightsaber, I want in.

Rey Sword GIF - Rey Sword Tense GIFs


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Books · Top 5 Wednesday

Books I Want to Read Before the End of the Year | Top 5 Wednesday

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Happy Wednesday!
Since I plan on posting a lot over the summer, I realised I’d run out of blog post ideas pretty quickly.  So I decided I’m going to start doing Top 5 Wednesdays. I don’t know if I will do them every single week but I’ll be doing whenever I like the topic!
*Top 5 Wednesday is a weekly meme, GoodReads group here with all the topics!


1) Strange The Dreamer by Laini Taylor

dsc_1473.jpgUntil recently (literally days ago), I didn’t own this book but wanted (desperately) to read it. I had been on the lookout for the UK hardback for ages and couldn’t get ahold of it. Luckily, someone on twitter didn’t want their copy and so we did a trade.
Finally, I can now read Strange the Dreamer! I will be picking this up asap in anticipation of Muse of Nightmares, I love Laini Taylor’s writing and previous series so I have no doubts that I’ll love this too.

 

2) Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen

dsc_1410.jpgThis is on my list of classics to get to this year, I really want to read this over the summer. I have no idea if it actually is summery but I’m saying it is!
I also really want to watch the BBC miniseries, so I need to read this asap so I can binge watch that afterwards!

 

3) The Hobbit by J.R.R TolkienIMG_20180523_160150_342.jpgUnpopular opinion:  I think Tolkien is overrated. I’ve read the first two Lord of the Rings books and honestly can’t see what the fuss is about. I found them to be pretty boring so I’ve been putting off reading The Hobbit. I found this gorgeous edition, which did make me want to read it more but I’m still worried I’m not going to like it.


4) Obsidio by Amie Kaufman + Jay Kristoff

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Obsidio was one of my most anticipated releases for 2018, why haven’t I read it yet? I have no idea. But now I feel like I should reread the first two, as I read them ages ago before I start this one and I’ve been putting it off. Sigh.

 

5) Kingdom of Ash by Sarah J Maas

9781408872918Another anticipated release, that hasn’t actually been released yet and I can guarantee as soon as I get my hands on this I will be reading it. I am dying to know how this series ends, it’s going to be a big book too, so I’ll be disappearing for a week when this comes out.


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Books · Review

Series Review: Daughter of Smoke and Bone By Laini Taylor (Spoiler Free!)

 

“Once upon a time, an angel and a devil fell in love. It did not end well.”


Synopsis of the first book:
“Errand requiring immediate attention. Come.

The note was on vellum, pierced by the talons of the almost-crow that delivered it. Karou read the message. ‘He never says please’, she sighed, but she gathered up her things.
When Brimstone called, she always came.”

In general, Karou has managed to keep her two lives in balance. On the one hand, she’s a seventeen-year-old art student in Prague; on the other, errand-girl to a monstrous creature who is the closest thing she has to family. Raised half in our world, half in ‘Elsewhere’, she has never understood Brimstone’s dark work – buying teeth from hunters and murderers – nor how she came into his keeping. She is a secret even to herself, plagued by the sensation that she isn’t whole.

Now the doors to Elsewhere are closing, and Karou must choose between the safety of her human life and the dangers of a war-ravaged world that may hold the answers she has always sought.



Let me just start off by saying; Laini Taylor’s writing is just beautiful. I love her writing so much, I cannot wait to read more from her.

Plot: 
The first book follows Karou, she runs errands for her chimaera family, she collects teeth for them, she knows nothing about who she is or where she came from. Her life turns upside down when the portals she uses to get to her chimaera family are destroyed, she has no way of accessing her family who raised her.
I really like the story of the ‘devils’ (chimaera) not really being the bad ones, it’s a really unique twist on the typical angels and devils stories.

The first book is basically Karou finding out more about herself and the family who raised her. The second book continues the journey of Karou embracing her heritage and her people and the war between the chimaera and angels is blossoming. (You get to see more or Eretz, the chimaera/angel world in this book, whereas the first is set in our world)
The third book is the conclusion, summing up everything, it’s hard to explain the third book without spoilers! However, the third book introduces a new character and I wasn’t overly keen at first, but it was wrapped up fairly well. Though I have to say the third book was my least favourite.

Characters:
Karou
–  She’s super cool art student with blue hair and tattoos raised by chimaeras. I love Karou, I really enjoyed her character and her chimaera ‘family’.
Akiva –  He’s an angel, his people are at war with the chimaeras. He is Karou’s forbidden love interest. I ship these two so bad, they’re so cute.
Zuzana – She is a tiny badass and Karou’s best friend. I love Zuzana and Karou’s friendship and Zuzana and Mik’s relationship, they’re too cute!
Ziri – A chimaera, one of my favourites. He is seriously such a cinnamon roll.

Overall: I freaking love these books, they have definitely become an all-time favourite. I look forward to rereading them in the future. I also cannot wait to read more by Laini Taylor, I will be picking up the novella for this series; Night of Cake and Puppets and Strange the Dreamer for sure!
I highly recommend these books to anyone wanting an Urban Fantasy with a bit of romance.

Book Ratings:
Daughter of Smoke and Bone: 4.5/5 Stars
Days of Blood and Starlight: 5/5 Stars
Dreams of Gods and Monsters: 4/5 Stars

Overall Series Rating: 4.5 / 5 Stars


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Books · Wrap-up

January Wrap-Up!

Happy February 1st!
How fast has this month gone! Can’t believe January is over already. Crazy!
I’ve had a pretty alright reading month, considering I’ve been pretty busy with college assignments. The upcoming months will probably be poor reading months, due to college being super busy. I finish in May/June and don’t start University until September, so I’ll get to fit a lot of reading in over the summer! (Hopefully)

I managed six books in January. Some good reads and some pretty bad reads:

 

 

Days of Blood and Starlight – Laini Taylor
Rating: 5/5 stars
I started off the year with an amazing book! I loved every moment of this book, I maybe even enjoyed it more than the first one!? I am enjoying this series so much, I cannot wait to pick the last book. I really hope it ends well!

 

The Foxhole Court – Nora Sakavic
Rating: 2/5
This is where things started to go downhill…
This book was a quick read for me, but it was so dull. I was bored through all of it, I didn’t like any of the characters and the writing was poor! I picked this up due to a lot of people comparing it with The Raven Cycle by Maggie Stiefvater. All I can say is: HOW DARE THEY! The Raven Cycle is an absolute masterpiece. To compare Maggie Stiefvater’s beautiful writing with this trash is frankly insulting.
I won’t be continuing this series.

 

King’s Cage – Victoria Aveyard
Rating: 3/5
This is a 2-star read, but I gave an extra star because Maven.
I have a mini review/rant on my Goodreads if you’re interested, it’s here.

 

To Kill A Kingdom – Alexandra Christo
Rating: 3.75 Stars
I have a full review post on this, if you’re interested in my full in-depth thoughts you can read my post here.

 

Spellslinger – Sebastien De Castell
Rating: 5/5
My audiobook of the month!
I loved this audiobook, it was so so so good.
I have a full review on this, check it out here.
I cannot wait to continue this series!

Prince of Thorns – Mark Lawrence
Rating:2/5
Probably the most disappointing read this month. I really expected to like this, I love a good anti-hero. This book was completely dire. It took me 10 days to read it, as I had no desire to keep on reading, it was boring.
A full review will be up for this soon, I’ll link it once it’s up.

So that’s all the books I read in January. Not a great start to the year, to be honest.
I really enjoyed Days of Blood and Starlight, To Kill A Kingdom and Spellslinger. The rest were disappointing. Maybe I should stop reading hyped books, or lower my expectations!


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Uncategorized

Book Series I Want To Continue in 2018

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This is going to be a list of excuses, basically.
These are some series/trilogies I would like to continue in 2018. I do prefer to binge read series’ from start to finish but for some reason, I didn’t do it with these books. Most of these series I started in 2017 and just never bothered to pick up the rest, despite actually wanting to continue. 2018 is the year I change that!

Lord of The Rings by J.R.R.Tolkien
I read the first two books in 2016 and never continued onto Return of The King. Although I wasn’t *that* keen on the first two, I still want to read the last one just so I can say I have finished the series. I always want to pick up The Hobbit this year, unlike Lord of the Rings, I haven’t been spoiled for anything that happens in this book and I don’t know any major plotlines.

The Stormlight Archives by Brandon Sanderson
Again, wasn’t super in love with the first book but everyone raves about this series and Brandon Sanderson is my favourite author so I’m willing to give Words of Radiance a go. Hoping to get around to this soon, but not super worried as these books take a while to come out!

Daughter of Smoke and Bone by Laini Taylor
I am loving these books so far and cannot wait to see where the story goes! Days of Blood and Starlight was my first read of 2018, I LOVED it.  I am also hoping to get to Dreams of Gods and Monsters really, really soon! And hopefully the novella Night of Cake & Puppets this year. I am still looking for the UK hardback of Dreams of Gods and Monsters to match the first two but I can’t seem to find it anywhere for a decent price. 😦

Summoner by Taran Matharu
I read the first book (The Novice) back in June and I enjoyed reading it, it’s a decent YA fantasy and the first book was a good set up for the rest of the books. Hoping to read at least the next book this year (hopefully more).

Red Queen by Victoria Aveyard
I read the first two books in 2017, I enjoyed them and want to continue reading them as the last book is out this year. I just picked up King’s Cage, hoping to finish it soon, I am not enjoying this one as much as I thought I would. I will continue the series as I have made it this far, I might as well finish the series and read War Storm when that comes out.

Let me know any series you will be continuing in 2018, I’d love to know!
Have a great weekend!


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Books · Favourites

Favourite Books Of 2017!

I read some absolutely amazing books in 2017.
I had a really great reading year, I managed 91 books and my average rating was 4 stars. Narrowing down my favourites down was very hard!

Here are some of my top favourites, in no particular order:

From left to right:

  • The Final Empire by Brandon Sanderson
  • Warbreaker by Brandon Sanderson
  • The Black Prism by Brent Weeks
  • The Dream Thieves by Maggie Stiefvater
  • A Court of Mist and Fury by Sarah J Maas
  • Simon vs The Homo Sapiens Agenda by Becky Albertalli
  • Lost Stars by Claudia Gray
  • Gemina by Jay Kristoff and Amie Kaufman
  • Leia, Princess of Alderaan by Claudia Gray
  • Elantris by Brandon Sanderson
  • Daughter of Smoke and Bone by Laini Taylor
  • Empire of Storms by Sarah J Maas
  • A Game of Thrones (Illustrated edition) by George RR Martin
  • Invasion of The Tearling by Erika Johansen
  • Blue Lily, Lily Blue by Maggie Stiefvater

Hoping I read so many more great books in 2018!
– Leisha