Forbidden

18889290Forbidden by Kimberley Griffiths Little

So it seems I’ve been on a bit of a Middle/Near Eastern kick lately, this time delving into the scorching world of an ancient Mesopotamian desert! Forbidden is at its core a love story about sixteen year old Jayden who despite her betrothal to her tribe’s sadistic and violent prince of sorts, falls in love with exotic stranger Kadesh. Her mom is gone, her sister is too preoccupied with the sex cult of a new goddess to be of much. assistance, her betrothed is cruel, and her love is forbidden so basically everything she know is falling apart.

This book was good; not great but not bad either, just good. For one, it’s essentially the same story I’ve read a thousand times (albeit with a new setting and original twist which is why I picked it up in the first place) I found that for majority of the novel it felt little else was going on with Jayden than her already-established issues regarding her upcoming nuptials to Herob and mixed feelings about Kadesh. Continue reading

Recreated

27774409Recreated by Colleen Houck

Recreated is another one of those surprising instances where the second in a trilogy is much better than the first.

If any of you read my review of Reawakened last year you’ll know that I did not feel it did my dear beloved Egyptian mythology justice. Or, rather, my too-many frustrations with the MCs rendered me unable to enjoy the history. If it weren’t that Egyptian mythology is basically never used in any form of text nowadays (*wink wink* *nudge nudge* authors!) and my undying love for (read: obsession with) Ancient Egypt, Recreated probably would have been one of those sequels that got put on my TBR list just because I don’t like not finishing series and then remained mysteriously unread until I forgot about it. Not that that’s happened before. Haha. Ha. Nope…

A thousand thanks to the old gods and the new for depriving me enough of Egyptian goodness that I was forced to read this. Please accept the sacrifice of a virtual goat in tribute for my thanks. Continue reading

The Wrath and the Dawn

18798983The Wrath and the Dawn by Renee Ahdieh

All it took was opening the cover for The Wrath and the Dawn to DESTROY ME.

You know how sometimes they print an excerpt on the first page of a book, before the title and the copyright and the actual story start?

THAT. That is all I read. And I just…dissolved.

THIS BOOK IS FANTASTIC! BEYOND FANTASTIC! SO FANTASTIC I’M AT SUCH A LOSS FOR WORDS I JUST KEEP SAYING ‘FANTASTIC’!

The Wrath and the Dawn is a retelling of (more so inspired by) the old Middle Eastern story One Thousand and One Nights or The Arabian Nights. In the original story, the basis is that the caliph takes a new wife every night only to kill her by morning until he marries Shaharzad who each night captivates him with a story. By leaving each tale unfinished every night she manages to keep the caliph so intrigued for 1001 nights that he doesn’t kill her. This is the part that Ahdieh takes into The Wrath and the Dawn, as well as her own versions of the traditional tales, but the rest is an entirely new world and an altogether mesmerizing new creation. And it is–wait for it!–FANTASTIC! Continue reading

The Fire Wish

16123804The Fire Wish by Amber Lough

You ever find a hidden gem on the bargain bookshelf? This is one of them.

The Fire Wish follows two girls from very different worlds in the (I think Ancient? Or medieval?) Middle East. Zayele is a human girl forced into an unwanted marriage with the young prince of the caliphate in Baghdad while Najwa is a jinni hiding from humans in underground caverns with a peculiar ability to breach the palace’s magical wards. By chance encounter the two meet and Zayele, desperate to escape her betrothal, makes a desperate wish on Najwa to switch places. And because making magical wishes on errant genies is such a fantastic and not at all dangerous ordeal, Zayele gets what she wants…in a totally wrong, completely dangerous, 100% so-not-worth-it-way-but-also-kind-of-necessary way. Continue reading

Poison Princess

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Poison Princess by Kresley Cole

I’ve got a serious bone to pick with this one. And okay, part of it is my fault that I apparently didn’t read the synopsis carefully enough but mostly, it’s that so. Much. Bothered. Me.

I just barely avoided giving it a 1-star on goodreads, and even then the most I could bring myself to give was 2 stars. Let me make this clear: I hate giving books poor reviews. Often, enjoying a book is a very subjective thing and I feel like I’m doing a disservice to all the work the author put in, especially when by all accounts the book should have been good but it wasn’t good for me. If goodreads ratings are any indication, though, tons of people LOVED IT so I’m thinking this is more of an ‘it’s not you, it’s me’ kind of thing despite my first reaction being ‘no it’s totally just you.’

But nonetheless, this is gonna be angry. Continue reading

Lord of Shadows

30312891Lord of Shadows by Casandra Clare

GUYS!

THIS BOOK IS SO F***ING GOOD.

LIKE, FANTASTIC AMAZING UNBELIEVABLY AWESOMELY GOOD.

HOLY SHIT!

Okay, okay; I’m calm, I swear. Lord of Shadows is the second installment of Cassandra Clare’s The Dark Artifices trilogy and the far better sequel to Lady Midnight. It picks up not too long after Lady Midnight lets out, the crew now facing a growing number of sea demon attacks as a result of Malcolm Fade’s body and the Black Book’s banishment into the Pacific Ocean by Emma. Julian’s sad because Emma is with Mark, Kit wants nothing to do with all the obnoxiously hot people who tell him what to do, Cristina’s with Diego even though she wants Mark, Mark is mad at Kieran while he’s pretending with Emma and longing for Cristina, and whole lot of other issues that I won’t even begin to go over. Continue reading

Lady Midnight

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Lady Midnight by Cassandra Clare

Unpopular opinion time: I didn’t absolutely love Lady Midnight.

Here’s the thing: I wanted to love Lady Midnight. Very badly. And I don’t NOT like it–it’s still amazing!–but it didn’t quite live up to my expectations.

First issue I had is that it takes a reeeeaally long time before seriously getting started. There’s a lot of introducing characters and solidifying relationships but even through the whole mysterious murders thing starts in the very first chapter, it’s not until a good 400 pages in that the Emma and her crew put some actual effort in to figure it out. It’s the first book of the series–I don’t care that it’s Cassie Clare and most people are going to be reading it just because of her and of Clary and Jace and Tessa and Will and Jem, it needs to grab and sustain our attention from the beginning. 400 pages of set-up, no matter how interesting the world is, is frustrating to read. Continue reading

Tales from the Shadowhunter Academy

28954137Tales from the Shadowhunter Academy by Cassandra Clare

Raise your hand if you’re a Shadowhunter fan! And another if you miss the TMI characters! And a foot if you love Simon!

*hovers in mid-air and raises all body parts for good measure*

Tales from the Shadowhunter Academy is a compilation of various short stories detailing Simon’s life and lessons at the Shadowhunter Academy, shortly after the finale of City of Heavenly Fire, the final installment of Cassandra Clare’s indescribably fabulous The Mortal Instruments series. It’s a combination Simon’s resent-day shenanigans and academy lessons told as flashbacks with familiar characters. Oh, yeah–the familiar characters is key. All of the stories told in TFTSA are either Simon’s or that of another from TMI or TID (with the exception of Nothing but Shadows which gives a little preview of the MCs of the upcoming prequel-sequel series, The Last Hours). It. Is. Glorious! Continue reading

Blackhearts

21936937Blackhearts by Nicole Castroman

Arrrrrrrrr, me hearties! Are ye ready for a swashbucklin’ tale of scoundrels sailing upon the raging seas? A tale of how the fiercest pirate to ‘ave ever lived became who he was?

Then this probably isn’t it.

But are you so in love with pirates that a book about a pirate before he was a pirate, set entirely in England and never on a ship, that’s primarily a love story is still right up your alley, especially if it promises that swashbuckling goodness in book 2?

Then you’ve come to the right place. Welcome aboard! Continue reading

Lux: Consequences

19081402Opal and Origin by J. L. Armentrout

Welcome back, Katy and Daemon! Oh how I’ve missed you.

Like Lux: Beginnings, Lux: Consequences is a compendium, this time containing Opal and Origin, books two and three of the Lux series. Opal picks up in the aftermath of Adam’s death (SOB), Blake’s & Will’s disappearances, Dawson’s return, and Katy’s torture by Daedalus, the secret government sect under the DOD that regulates (read: KIDNAPS AND TORTURES AND FORCIBLY EXPERIMENTS ON) the Luxen. I know, TONS OF STUFF. The gang is still reeling from the events of Onyx but hatch a plan to push back on Daedalus and rescue Dawson’s dear beloved Beth. But, you know, “the best laid plans…”

Shit’s gon’ go downhill reeeeeeeeal fast. Continue reading