eARC Review: Harrow the Ninth (The Locked Tomb #2), by Tamsyn Muir

harrow the ninth tamsyn muir

Rating: ★★★★☆

Genres: Fantasy, Science Fiction, F/F

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I received an advance copy from Edelweiss in exchange for an honest review.

Harrow is now a Lyctor, and joins God and the other Lyctors in a war they cannot win. Her health is failing and her mind is, too – she is almost sure she’s going mad.

Harrow the Ninth is a puzzle of a book – entirely different from Gideon the Ninth, it starts exchanging between present (second person) and past (person), which I found terribly confusing. For a (fleeting) moment I considered not continuing the book at all because it was frustrating to try to keep up; while book 1 is deliciously addictive from chapter one, it took book 2 almost 70% of the book to feel the same way for me. Harrow is quite different from the first book, and the reader should be ready to be patient with it. It is worth reading through the confusing chapters, I promise, and once you start getting answers (and some of them you can try to guess yourself, which was exciting for me), it’s seriously worth it. The twists blew my mind. Continue reading

Mini-Reviews: Queen of Nothing, The Deep, To Drink Coffee with a Ghost, Stay Sexy & Don’t Get Murdered

queen of nothing holly black Queen of Nothing by Holly Black

Rating: ★★★☆☆

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I really enjoyed the first two books in the series, especially for how cutthroat Jude was, and all the scheming and twists and betrayals were just really exciting to read. This final book, however, just felt like one long ode to how amazing Cardan is, how worthy of love and how secretly a good guy he was all along. There is not much going on at all for most of the book, and even what conflict is there was too quickly resolved, too neatly wrapped up. I did enjoy the book, just felt a bit disappointed by it. The audiobook was really good, though! Continue reading

Mini-Review: Red, White and Royal Blue, by Casey McQuiston

red white and royal blue casey mcquiston

Rating: ★★★★☆

Categories: New Adult, Contemporary / Alternate History, Romance

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Alex Claremont-Diaz is the American equivalent of a royal: his mother is the first female President of the United States, and his charisma, hard work and looks have landed him the title of heartthrob. What the press can’t ever find out is that he absolutely hates the stuffy, cold and outrageously handsome Prince of Wales, Henry. When he and the prince cause a scene during the Royal Wedding, they must pretend to be best friends in order to not damage the image of the President or the Royals.

This was a surprising mix of adorable, sexy and political that really won me over! I loved the chemistry between Alex and Henry and their banter was so funny, and actively blushed in the bus when Those Scenes showed up in the story. I loved how politics was such a huge part of this book, although I think it might have made the story a bit less appealing to people who only wanted the cute love story. If you dislike politics, don’t pick this up. I thought it was very current and made Alex more of a real person. This book is super hyped at the moment and I think it’s for a good reason! Highly recommend.

Mini-Review: Wilder Girls, by Rory Power

wilder girls rory power

Rating: ★★★★☆

Categories: Young Adult, Fantasy, Thriller & Horror, F/F

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Two years ago, when the Tox took over Raxter School for Girls, the entire island was put under quarantine. The disease is in the land, in the trees, in the girls, causing strange and disturbing side effects, for which the government has promised a cure, but so far all they receive is less and less supplies every time. When Byatt goes missing, Hetty knows she is still alive, and she must find her, no matter the cost, no matter the consequences.

I had lots of fun reading this book – I didn’t know I needed more horror in my life before I picked it up! I don’t have much to say about it, as I started reading it and was so engrossed I forgot to read it as a blogger and just got lost in the story. It’s a really interesting book, with such a great take on The Lord of the Flies (which I hated) and turning it into a feminist horror young adult. So, so good. I did not entirely like the writing style, it felt a little too stilted, I think I hoped for something more lush, but that is my personal taste. The mystery was great, the characters were so great –  sometimes vicious and just trying to survive, but also very loyal, and I highly recommend this book!

Review: Magic for Liars, by Sarah Gailey

magic for liars sarah gailey

Rating: ★★★☆☆

Categories: Fantasy, Thriller & Mystery, wide LGBT rep (incl. F/F)

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Ivy Gamble is a private detective. She hasn’t spoken with her sister for years, her talented, more beautiful twin who was born with magic, while Ivy… wasn’t. When there is a gory murder at the magical University where her sister works, Ivy is hired to investigate it. She is suddenly caught in that world, the dangerous magic and the more dangerous secrets, and she must somehow find the culprit.

This was kind of all over the place for me! I had quite a mixed experience with this book, which is why I’m giving it 3 stars. First of all, I loved how queer this book was! So many characters casually being lesbian and pan, it was really cool. I love the idea of a magical school, like Harry Potter but modern, and way more LGBT+. I think that was my favorite thing about the book: the idea of it. Continue reading

Review: The Starless Sea, by Erin Morgenstern

the starless sea erin morgenstern

Rating: ★★★★☆

Genres: Fantasy, M/M Romance

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Zachary Erza Rawlins once found a door painted onto a wall and did not dare open it, despite his curiosity. He suspected but did not know back then that he had just missed his opportunity to visit the world of the Starless Sea. Many years later, he finds a strange little book in the library, and the stories in the book feel more real than they should: stories of a magical land, of myth and metaphors, of painted doors… and of a boy who did not open it. Startled to see himself on the pages of a book written long before he was born, Zachary enters the adventure of a lifetime, and has a second chance to see the Starless Sea, where he will become part of a story that began much, much before his time. Continue reading

Review: Ninth House (Alex Stern #1), by Leigh Bardugo

ninth house leigh bardugo

Rating: ★★★★☆

Genres: Urban Fantasy, Dark Academia

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Alex Stern has the opportunity of a lifetime to study at Yale if she accepts to work for Lethe. She is able to see ghosts, which is an ability unheard of by Lethe members, and this is why they want her. She knows the offer is too good to be true, but she just cannot refuse: after being the sole survivor of a brutal attack and almost dying from overdosing, she must find a way out. Lethe wants her to keep out the ghosts that threaten to disrupt the magic societies like Lethe itself work with on the underground of Yale. But the magic she witnesses is never lovely and beautiful like she dreamed – it’s brutal and bloody. And when a murdered girl shows up and nobody seems to want her to investigate, she knows what she must do, although she doesn’t know what it might cost her. Continue reading

Review: Gideon the Ninth (The Locked Tomb #1), by Tamsyn Muir

gideon the ninth tamsyn muir

Rating: ★★★★★

Genres: Fantasy, Science Fiction, F/F

Goodreads 

The Emperor needs new necromancers, and the Ninth House Necromancer needs a cavalier. Gideon is not a cavalier, but she is the best swordswoman, and if she can pull off pretending to be a loyal, obedient cavalier of the Ninth, Harrow has promised her freedom. She knows she cannot trust Harrow, but this is probably her best chance at being free, so she will take her chances and try to fool the other eight necromancers and eight cavaliers. But she isn’t the only one with secrets, and as the trials for becoming a Lyctor begin, tensions grow and it is clear that not everyone (or anyone) will stay alive. Continue reading

Review: Jade War (The Green Bone Saga #2), by Fonda Lee

jade war fonda lee

Rating: ★★★★★

Genres: Urban Fantasy

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[Spoilers of Jade City ahead]

Jade War is the sequel to Jade City, an excellent urban fantasy novel that brings to life the struggle of clan No Peak to stay in power. Led by the Kaul family since their break from the original One Mountain clan, they have been at war with the biggest clan from Kekon for power, both from jade and from gold. In Jade War, Shae and Hilo fight to gain more international allies and to bring clan justice to Lan’s murderer.  Meanwhile, Andy is sent to Espenia after having humiliated Hilo and the clan, partly in exile, partly for his own protection. Continue reading

Review: Missing, Presumed Dead by Emma Berquist

missing presumed dead emma berquist

Rating: ★★★★☆

Genres: Mystery, Young Adult, F/F Paranormal Romance

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Lexi doesn’t like it when people touch her. No, that’s an understatement – Lexi flinches whenever someone touches her, because she can see how anyone will die if she has contact with their skin. She also sees ghosts, and can send them to wherever it is they should’ve gone when they died, but at great cost to her. She’s lonely and miserable, working at a night club to make ends meet where people like her are welcome. One night, she touches a woman who’s going to be murdered violently that night and when she meets her ghost, she knows she must do whatever it takes to avenge her. Continue reading