"I can steal anything," so says Gen, the best thief in the land, yet he can't steal himself from prison. When the magus deOriginally posted on my blog
"I can steal anything," so says Gen, the best thief in the land, yet he can't steal himself from prison. When the magus decides to free Gen on the condition of finding a rare, ancient artefact, Gen has no no other choice than to comply.
I think the world building is on point. It is so rich, and the fables of the gods and goddesses feel real and magical. I want to immerse myself into the world, stay there forever. Which is awesome that there are several more books in the series.
This is the kind of book where nothing happens for the first hundred pages, except for the party traveling from point A to point B, much like in Lord of the Rings. If you don't mind that sort of thing, then this book is for you; if not, you'll have to slog through the walking and talking and even more walking parts.
I found the second half of the book to be lacking. I wasn't interested in the adventurous path of the party, I was more interested in the journey. There was just something about Gen being by himself, without the constant companionship of his travel buddies, that was just lonely and monotonous. By himself, Gen was a flat character who boasted to be able to steal things, but we don't actually see it, we're merely told it.
I just couldn't find myself liking it as much as everyone else did, which is a shame, because I'd been looking forward to this for a long while....more
I love the way this book is written, in diary entries and short vignettes and the like. It made it so easy to attach myself to Maddie, a POC African AI love the way this book is written, in diary entries and short vignettes and the like. It made it so easy to attach myself to Maddie, a POC African American and Japanese (though this is barely touched upon, which is a shame) girl who essentially lives in a bubble. It is a very intimate book, much in the way the Princess Diaries series were.
Reading it on my kindle feels like it doesn't give the book justice. There are illustrations, and charts, and lists, and handwritten diary entries, and such that I'm sure would have looked fantastic in physical form, without having to wait for the lag of my kindle to load the pages. At first I thought, You betcha sweet ass I'll be buying this book and rereading it over and over for the feels and the proper experience. But as I read on, something didn't feel right. Maddie's condition was odd. And Ollie ended up helping her endangering her life, which made him the opposite of a sweet sexy love interest. That he would let her go through with her potentially life-threatening plan makes him an unreliable lover, bordering on abusive.
Speaking of abuse, let's discuss her mother, who knew that Maddie was never sick to begin with. Who kept Maddie in this bubble, isolated from the world so that they could be together forever. Who ruined Maddie's immune system as a result of keeping her hidden from the world. I detested that there wasn't more done to chastise her mother, no police involved, no nothing. It was just glossed over as a mother who cared too much. That made me mad, that abuse like that was seen as being overprotective.
This book was a huge disappointment. I wish I could say better things about it, but, morally, I just can't....more
I was hesitant about starting this book. The cover is so gorgeous, but I've learned enough times that sometimes the storyOriginally posted on my blog
I was hesitant about starting this book. The cover is so gorgeous, but I've learned enough times that sometimes the story isn't as lovely as the packaging.
It has such an interesting, promising premise: a murder mystery that spans not just our universe, but the multiverse--a universe for every single decision made. An infinite world of infinite possibilities. Marguerite Cain is on a mission to catch her father's killer, even if it means turning herself into "atomic soup".
Marguerite, I found, is a boring character. Even when she inhabits the bodies of the Marguerites from other worlds, she has no personality. She's just a blank slate hidden inside other blank slates.
All the plot is shoved aside to make room for a ridiculous romance that literally comes from out of nowhere. First Marguerite is so sure that this guy killed her father, and the next moment, she's pining away about his body heat and their almost touching. It made me want to gag, it was so sappy. The discussion of fate--of things that happen in all universes, such as the love between two people--just makes the romance even more gag-worthy. It's just so forced. It's such a shame about the lack of plot because it was such a unique concept that could have been fantastic under the right circumstances.
I found myself constantly bored by the story. Even when she's a grand duchess in Russia, the story manages to fall flat in lieu of the romance. All danger and consequences are thrown away for the sake of the romance. There was nothing at stake except for this true love. In the end, I had to DNF this book. The contradictory nature of the multiuniverses verses fate just left me too frustrated to go on. That's not to say it's bad. I was just expecting more sci-fi than romance. If you're in the mood for star-crossed lovers, then this is probably for you....more
It is believed that only one thing will stop the centuries-old war between the bird-like Avicen and the dragon folk, the Read my review on my blog HERE
It is believed that only one thing will stop the centuries-old war between the bird-like Avicen and the dragon folk, the Drakharin, and it's up to Echo to find it.
After being found in a library after dark, Echo is adopted by the Ala, one of the Avicen, and brought to live in their magical world, hidden amongst the folds of humanity. When given the opportunity to end the war that ravages her people, Echo jumps at the chance, even if it means following a fairytale.
I liked this book a lot. It reminds me of The Daughter of Smoke and Bone, in that it features a world that lives on the fringes of human society, beneath the subways, and in the in-between. The world-building is frankly gorgeous, and I can't wait to emerge myself into it again in the next book.
Echo is a nuanced character with a love for books and words. I loved how she would think of delicate and appropriate words for her situations, such as tsundoku, which translates as letting books pile up without reading them all, and psiturism: the sound of wind through the trees. It adds to the poetic and delicate prose, which is also gorgeous.
I think my biggest grievance is the romance. It develops too quickly, and turns into a bitter love-triangle. I think I would have tolerated it more if not for the fact that Echo already has a boyfriend while she pursues something with Caius, the Dragon Prince of the Drakharin.
The supporting cast is fun and varied, from the flamboyant peacock-Avicen, Jasper, to the quiet, brooding Dorian, who is in love with his best friend, Caius. I applaud the use of queer characters who have actual agency, and aren't just used as scenery. Here, they are given pivotal roles, and are as important as Echo herself.
I have severe anxiety. Leaving the house is sometimes a dreaded chore. Talking to people makes me want to cry. Everything feels too much in my brain. This is how Finding Audrey feels, as well. And it's amazing to finally find a character who is like me in so many ways. To be honest, my anxiety isn't near as bad as Audrey's, but anxiety is anxiety, no matter how bad.
I kept tearing up at how real her struggle is, because I know what it's like to have a panic attack. I know what it's like to avoid eye contact. I placed myself in Audrey's shoes and it was a brilliant experience.
Audrey's anxiety makes her unable to look people in the eyes, so she wear big, dark glasses everywhere, even inside the house. Her struggle is real and poignant, and it hurts so much because I know where she's coming from. I can't look people in the eyes properly, I get shaky when someone talks to me, even if it's a loved one, and I stutter when I speak to people because the words just don't want to come out. I understand her pain, and it makes the novel all the more realistic. It's obvious that Kinsella has researched for this book. There is one segment in the book where Audrey decides to stop taking her pills, just out of the blue. It takes a careful eye--one that perhaps only someone who takes pills would notice--but her behaviour becomes more erratic and unpredictable. This is the first time in a novel I've seen someone praise the use of medication for mentally unwell people. Most of the time, they stop taking their pills and are all better, but here, Audrey learns that she needs her pills to keep her stable. This was a big selling point for the book.
Other stellar mentions were the writing: it was fun, lighthearted, and I could barely put it down. This is such a brilliant book, and I love love love it. It's made me want to read more of Sophie Kinsella's books.