Girls Made of Snow and Glass

“You’ll see too, one day. Once you grow older, someone else will be waiting to take your place, someone younger and prettier than you. I knew that day was approaching for me. I knew even when you were still a child. So why am I so surprised to learn that I’m being thrown aside? Why am I always so surprised?”

Title: Girls Made of Snow and Glass

Author: Melissa Bashardoust

Series: Standalone

Publication:  September 5th 2017 by Flatiron Books

Pages: 384

Source: Netgalley

Summary from Goodreads:

Frozen meets The Bloody Chamber in this feminist fantasy reimagining of the Snow White fairytale

At sixteen, Mina’s mother is dead, her magician father is vicious, and her silent heart has never beat with love for anyone—has never beat at all, in fact, but she’d always thought that fact normal. She never guessed that her father cut out her heart and replaced it with one of glass. When she moves to Whitespring Castle and sees its king for the first time, Mina forms a plan: win the king’s heart with her beauty, become queen, and finally know love. The only catch is that she’ll have to become a stepmother.

Fifteen-year-old Lynet looks just like her late mother, and one day she discovers why: a magician created her out of snow in the dead queen’s image, at her father’s order. But despite being the dead queen made flesh, Lynet would rather be like her fierce and regal stepmother, Mina. She gets her wish when her father makes Lynet queen of the southern territories, displacing Mina. Now Mina is starting to look at Lynet with something like hatred, and Lynet must decide what to do—and who to be—to win back the only mother she’s ever known…or else defeat her once and for all.

Entwining the stories of both Lynet and Mina in the past and present, Girls Made of Snow and Glass traces the relationship of two young women doomed to be rivals from the start. Only one can win all, while the other must lose everything—unless both can find a way to reshape themselves and their story.


My Thoughts:

You know those times when you struggle to get into a book regardless of its wonders? That is how I felt with Girls Made of Snow and Glass. Honestly, I can’t tell you if it was over hyped or if I simply missed the underlying message of what was going on. I’d heard amazing things about the book. I’d heard it was a wonderful feminist retelling of Snow White… but I struggled regardless. There was, is, so much more beyond the surface of this book and, in all honesty, I simply didn’t give it the time it deserved.

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A Darker Shade of Magic

“You know so little of war. Battles may be fought from the outside in, but wars are won from the inside out.” 

Title: A Darker Shade of Magic

Author: V.E Schwab

Series: Shades of Magic # 1

Publication: February 24th 2015 by Tor Books

Pages: 400

Source: Purchased

Summary from Goodreads:

Kell is one of the last Antari—magicians with a rare, coveted ability to travel between parallel Londons; Red, Grey, White, and, once upon a time, Black. 

Kell was raised in Arnes—Red London—and officially serves the Maresh Empire as an ambassador, traveling between the frequent bloody regime changes in White London and the court of George III in the dullest of Londons, the one without any magic left to see.

Unofficially, Kell is a smuggler, servicing people willing to pay for even the smallest glimpses of a world they’ll never see. It’s a defiant hobby with dangerous consequences, which Kell is now seeing firsthand.

After an exchange goes awry, Kell escapes to Grey London and runs into Delilah Bard, a cut-purse with lofty aspirations. She first robs him, then saves him from a deadly enemy, and finally forces Kell to spirit her to another world for a proper adventure.

Now perilous magic is afoot, and treachery lurks at every turn. To save all of the worlds, they’ll first need to stay alive.

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Blog Tour: I Hate Everyone But You

“I don’t subscribe to labels. Unless I’m labeling other people.” 

Title: I Hate Everyone But You

Authors: Gaby Dunn and Allison Raskin

Series: Standalone

Publication: September 5th 2017 by Wednesday Books

Pages: 352

Source: Publisher in exchange for an honest review

Summary from Goodreads:

Dear Best Friend,
I can already tell that I will hate everyone but you.
Sincerely,
Ava Helmer
(that brunette who won’t leave you alone)

We’re still in the same room, you weirdo.
Stop crying.
G

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Long May She Reign

There were choices, and then there were choices. People could say “everything is a choice” with as much haughtiness and superiority as they liked, but that didn’t mean desperate people wouldn’t take a third option if they could.

Title: Long May She Reign

Author: Rhiannon Thomas

Series: Standalone

Publication: February 21st 2017 by HarperTeen

Pages: 422

Source: Library

Summary from Goodreads:

Freya was never meant be queen. Twenty third in line to the throne, she never dreamed of a life in the palace, and would much rather research in her laboratory than participate in the intrigues of court. However, when an extravagant banquet turns deadly and the king and those closest to him are poisoned, Freya suddenly finds herself on the throne.

Freya may have escaped the massacre, but she is far from safe. The nobles don’t respect her, her councillors want to control her, and with the mystery of who killed the king still unsolved, Freya knows that a single mistake could cost her the kingdom – and her life.

Freya is determined to survive, and that means uncovering the murderers herself. Until then, she can’t trust anyone. Not her advisors. Not the king’s dashing and enigmatic illegitimate son. Not even her own father, who always wanted the best for her, but also wanted more power for himself.

As Freya’s enemies close in and her loyalties are tested, she must decide if she is ready to rule and, if so, how far she is willing to go to keep the crown.


Thoughts and Feelings

How the book sounded:

What it felt like:

I had so much faith in this book… but, long story short, it let me down. Long May She Reign sounded as if it were going to be a mind boggling journey of medieval political warfare. The book, however, was completely off its rocker when it came to pacing, world building, and the characters themselves. I could bite at the premise. The 23rd in line getting the throne? I wanted to know why and how and how it was possibly going to work. Instead, I was given a long trek through a tar pit with minimal character development as a life line. It wasn’t worth it. Opps.

 

 

The Book Jumper

“The paper slid smoothly over my cheeks and along the bridge of my nose until it covered my eyes. The letters were far too close up to read. They swam before my eyes, melting into an inky whirlpool. They swirled around each other; they changed shape. Words flexed and twisted apart to form bushes and foliage. And then they came pattering down like raindrops: a shower of words raining down on me.”

Title: The Book Jumper

Author: Mechthild Gläser

Series: Standalone

Publication:  January 3rd 2017 by Feiwel & Friends

Pages: 371

Source: Library

Summary from Goodreads:

Amy Lennox doesn’t know quite what to expect when she and her mother pick up and leave Germany for Scotland, heading to her mother’s childhood home of Lennox House on the island of Stormsay.


Amy’s grandmother, Lady Mairead, insists that Amy must read while she resides at Lennox House—but not in the usual way. Amy learns that she is a book jumper, able to leap into a story and interact with the world inside. As thrilling as Amy’s new power is, it also brings danger: someone is stealing from the books she visits, and that person may be after her life. Teaming up with fellow book jumper Will, Amy vows to get to the bottom of the thefts—at whatever the cost.
 


My Thoughts:

The above gif is a representation of me while I was reading this masterpiece/trainwreck/ amazing/ dissapointing adventure of a book. I have such a love hate relationship with this book right now. I WANTED to fall head over heels in love with The Book Jumper. I mean, the whole premise is a girl who can jump into the stories she reads. HOW COOL IS THAT?! I want to jump into my favorite books and meet my heroes, though I probably wouldn’t last a week. However, the amazing premise and original idea and execution couldn’t make up for the severe lack of character and world building.

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Kalahari

 

People are like stars, but it’s stories that turn us into constellations. If we don’t tell our stories, we burn alone in the dark.

Title: Kalahari

Author: Jessica Khoury

Series: Corpus # 3 (Can be a standalone)

Publication: January 19th 2016 by Razorbill

Pages: 384

Source: Library

Summary from Goodreads:

When an educational safari goes wrong, five teens find themselves stranded in the Kalahari Desert without a guide. It’s up to Sarah, the daughter of zoologists, to keep them alive and lead them to safety, calling on survival know-how from years of growing up in remote and exotic locales. Battling dehydration, starvation and the pangs of first love, she does her best to hold it together, even as their circumstances grow increasingly desperate.
 
But soon a terrifying encounter makes Sarah question everything she’s ever known about the natural world. A silver lion, as though made of mercury, makes a vicious, unprovoked attack on the group. After a narrow escape, they uncover the chilling truth behind the lion’s silver sheen: a highly contagious and deadly virus that threatens to ravage the entire area—and eliminate life as they know it.


My Thoughts:

I finished this a few days ago, but it’s taken me until this moment to figure out what I have to say. I’m, in all honesty, still not one hundred percent sure that I love this book. I like it, I like it a lot – to be exact. It was fun, entertaining, nerve wracking, heart pounding, and thought provoking. However, despite how much I loved everything about this book, one small thing is holding me back – characterization.

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When I Am Through With You

“This isn’t meant to be a confession. Not in any spiritual sense of the word. Yes, I’m in jail at the moment. I imagine I’ll be here for a long time, considering. But I’m not writing this down for absolution and I’m not seeking forgiveness, not even from myself. Because I’m not sorry for what I did to Rose. I’m just not. Not for any of it.”

Title: When I Am Through With You

Author: Stephanie Kuehn

Series: Standalone

Publication: August 1st 2017 by Dutton Books for Young Readers

Pages: 304

Source: Publisher in exchange for a honest review

Summary from Goodreads:

Ben Gibson is many things, but he’s not sorry and he’s not a liar. He will tell you exactly about what happened on what started as a simple school camping trip in the mountains. About who lived and who died. About who killed and who had the best of intentions. But he’s going to tell you in his own time. Because after what happened on that mountain, time is the one thing he has plenty of.


A List of Thoughts:

  • I totally forgot how good Stephanie Kuehn is at being creepy.
  • Book starts off with a high school senior waiting to go on trial for murder… cue the doom music
  • The writing is infuriatingly addictive – You want to know what’s happening and why and Ben, the narrator, dangles it all just out of reach until he’s ready to tell you.
  • The characters are fantastically deep and multi-dimensional. Each individual has their own story, their own purpose, and their own key role in the narrative as it unfolds.
  • When I am Through With You pulls you in and makes you want to know why. You know what happened, but you want the why and the how and the when and ARGGGGH. So wonderful and frustrating.
  • This book keeps you on the edge of your seat even though you know the end game… or do you? IT’S SO GREAT, GUYS! I love it when books make me need to know what is going on. That’s evidence of a good story right then and there.

Basically, guys, read the book and strap yourselves in for one wild ride.


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