I don't know what I was expecting when I read An Ember in the Ashes, but not this. Not this brutal, heartbreaking, real story. This novel breathed wit I don't know what I was expecting when I read An Ember in the Ashes, but not this. Not this brutal, heartbreaking, real story. This novel breathed with horror and pain, but also hope and love. It was difficult to get through sometimes. Some scenes, particularly the third trial, had my heart crying out, as I felt the wretchedness of the characters and their task, their duty, and their pure sorrow and terror at what they are commanded to do. Tahir expertly crafted a tale that spoke directly to the heart, bringing to life the brutalness of a Rome like world where dark magical beings reside. Jinn and efrits and the like, creatures thought to be myth by the people, but that reveal themselves throughout the novel.
This story is not a light, carefree story where everything ends up right at the end and the girl and boy realize their undying love for one another and the evil is triumphed. No, this story is quite unlike most novels. This novel is real. It doesn't cut corners, or spare the reader the brutality of the Masks and the Commandant. It doesn't let up when it knows you are suffering as the characters are suffering and wish that they didn't have to do what they're doing. And this is what made me love the novel so much. Tahir did such an excellent job at creating her story, at melding the dark side with the magical side and even the love. Love between a sister and her brother; love between a girl and her new found slave friend; love between a girl and a boy. That being said, the romantic love was practically not even there. It didn't lead the story and come at you screaming to be heard. It was so refreshing to have a story that is led by the plot, and to have the romance be almost an afterthought. But still there, because I do love a good love story. But I also love a good story that doesn't need romance to be a story.
As for the characters, they were so believable. Particularly the main characters, Laia and Elias. Laia was an uncertain, scared girl who's family is dead and she has to beat unimaginable odds to free her brother. She goes through so much, but she stands strong. She's afraid and weak, but she's so strong because she rises above her weakness and in the end refuses to be beaten down and to let her friends die. I love this girl. I loved watching her journey and seeing her grow and overcome her trials and fight the evil with her goodness. Elias was someone who caught my attention right at the beginning. Here's a guy who wants to do the right thing, wants to be free of the brutality, wants to save lives. And he goes through his own trials, though his station is high, and he could have everything he wants. He hates the world he lives in, but realizes that he has to face it. And, gah, that third trial, I still can't get over it. It was so heartbreaking, I didn't want it to happen. But, I guess for the sake of the story it needed to. Through everything though, Elias stayed true to who he was. Strong, loyal, good, striving to do the right thing.
This is a novel that will stay with me for a long time. I didn't expect it to affect me so. But I think seeing the darkness helped me to understand the characters better and to appreciate the good that did happen. I can see why this book is getting so much hype. It definitely deserves it. So, read on people, read an exhilarating, death defying, ruthless novel that will tear your heart out, but that will give you strength and hope to put it back together. Read a truly outstanding novel. I certainly loved it....more
Well, I honestly don’t know what to say after that ending. Quite the twist. Not to mention my heart laying on the floor bleeding (which was kind of thWell, I honestly don’t know what to say after that ending. Quite the twist. Not to mention my heart laying on the floor bleeding (which was kind of the state of it through almost half the book, what with happened with Celaena and Chaol, after that moment of ultimate betrayal). Yeah, that kind of sucked. Alright, it was awful! It hurt so much! Goodness, I can’t believe it even happened. They were finally together, and it was beautiful, then they were ripped apart.
I was pretty surprised by this sequel to Throne of Glass. I loved that book. I loved the characters, and writing, and story-building, and plot. Everything. But then I read Crown of Midnight, and it blew everything out of the water. I was sucked so deep into the book, into Celaena’s story, and anguish. I did not expect to be so affected by this book. But Celaena’s pain, and anger, cried out to me, struck me. Then the storyline deepened, and became more complex, more intriguing, just, more. There is so much more to Celaena’s backstory, and who she is. The twists in the story knocked me off my feet, especially the ending. I love the magical element, how it is threaded into the plot, giving it more meaning, and infusing it with intrigue, and promise of a better world.
I loved all the characters. They all have so much depth to them, and emotions. They’re not just lifeless characters who serve only to take up space. They all have meaning, and they all have an integral part. Celaena, is one tough girl. She had to be, what with her past. And she has so many secrets. I didn't realize how much she was keeping inside, and what those secrets could mean to her, and everyone else.
I loved the romance. I liked it a lot better here than in the first book because I like the male interest better. Well, I love them (Dorian and Chaol) both, but I like the couple better in this book. It became one of favorite romances! I just wanted them to get together. There was just so much tension, and you know that they both want each other, they’re just too stubborn to give in. But they couldn’t hold it in forever. It was bound to come out sooner or later. And it did, and it was fantastic.
The writing was fantastic, the world-building was outstanding. The story just ran along at a fast pace, I could barely keep up. And then the end happened, and it left me breathless, and stunned. Made even more heartbreaking by what happened between Celaena and Chaol. But the twists at the end. Wowzer! did not see anything like that coming at all. And now I cannot wait for the sequel. ...more
I was excited to read this when I first heard about it. It sounded pretty awesome, and that cover, yeah, that had me pulling towards it faster than anI was excited to read this when I first heard about it. It sounded pretty awesome, and that cover, yeah, that had me pulling towards it faster than anything else could. When Netgalley accepted my request, I was so anxious to dive right into the story. I was never really worried that it wouldn’t live up to my expectations. And it did. Even going beyond what I was hoping for, and promising so much more.
I find pirates rather intriguing. Maybe that stems from my liking of the Pirates of the Caribbean movies, but don’t pillaging, sword fighting, treasure seeking pirates have a ring of adventure and mystery to them? Even if some of them are good for nothing scoundrels. The pirates in this here book were fashioned quite well. The story is told from a young pirate girl’s point of view. Which I honestly find quite appealing. A pirate girl isn’t going to be a TSTL heroine who relies on her hero to save her. Ananna was fierce and independent. She takes action, and she doesn’t wait for the dazzling hero to get her out of the situations she gets herself into. And this is what drew me completely into the story.
I found myself falling in love with Ananna’s voice. She was just such fun to read. She was a strong character. She was the fierce, independent pirate girl, but she also shows a soft side. A side that cares about people and that could love. And she shows that she’s not completely fearless. There are things that scare her senseless. But she doesn’t let her fright get the better of her. She rises after the scare with strength and determination to set out to do what she needs to. Then there was Naji. The assassin whose life Ananna saved and now they’re bonded together and they have to find a way to break the curse. Naji was a pretty cool character, and I felt was created really good. He’s an awesome assassin. Black as night that can move without a sound and can kill with precision and skill. But Naji isn’t your typical prince charming who has girls falling over their feet to get him, who dazzles everyone, including the heroine, with his charms and extremely hot looks. Naji is scarred, physically and internally. And this shows the reader his weakness. It shows that he is not just the fearless, stealthy assassin. He has demons he’s trying to fight, and he tries to hide it. And I really did feel for him. I find myself liking the tortured hero, because it shows they’re not perfect, and that they have a past.
I liked the subtle, slow growing romance. I liked that Ananna didn’t immediately fall in love with him (which would be pretty hard to do when he just tried to kill her). I liked that they were forced to be together which they both resented, but that through this bond, this curse, they grew to understand each other. I liked that Ananna was able to see past Naji’s scars, and focus on the man who desperately needs help. I felt that the buildup of their friendship, and potential, inevitable romance was done well and was beautiful. I’m extremely excited to see how their romance will blossom.
And the ending. The ending was perfect! The last line made me smile and made my heart grow warm because of its beauty and love. This novel was beautifully crafted and executed. It was by no means perfect. When I really think about it, there are a few flaws, but I just don’t want to think about those, because the book was otherwise so awesome that I don’t want my love of it tainted in any way. So, I’ll focus on the bright spots instead. K? The characters were very well rounded, and I loved them, the plot was exciting and intriguing, the world was luscious and wonderfully built, the writing was amazing. Pretty much I just loved the whole book. Clarke did an awesome job, and I cannot wait for the sequel. Which should be coming out any day now. Sometime next year. Or maybe sooner if I can bribe the publisher, and find some ingenious way to force Clarke to write faster. Because we all know how readers hate to wait. Anyway, I applaud Clarke for writing an incredible, worthwhile young adult novel that hopefully readers everywhere will love.
Thank you to Strange Chemistry and Netgalley for the arc....more
This was such a wonderful love story. As promised on the cover, the story of Leigh captured my heart, and my soul. The cover here on Goodreads actuallThis was such a wonderful love story. As promised on the cover, the story of Leigh captured my heart, and my soul. The cover here on Goodreads actually has a different sentence. On my copy it says A love story so powerful it captures more than your heart. It was a beautiful story about a girl finding herself, going out to live in a more liberated world with no overly protective mother hovering over her shoulder every minute of the day. The messages found within made my soul smile. Seeing the characters growth and love and faith strengthened mine and made me want them to have their happily ever afters!
Some scenes were so poignant I had tears in my eyes. Leigh is a survivor of ovarian cancer and has moved to BYU Utah with her brother to attend college. We’re taken inside Leigh’s head, and see the love she has for her brother and Nathan and Brian and her parents. We see her fears and uncertainties and her strengthened faith as those who love her help her to see the light and as she overcomes trials and finds who she is. I loved her strength and determination to do things herself, to do what she loves. She is rather stupid about boys. She never knows when one likes her, and fancies herself deeply in love with one who is so obviously not right for her, and doesn’t notice when the one who is her only true friend loves her. I knew from the very start that Noah was not good for her. He seemed too presumptuous and perfect with no charm or kindness. I loved that Leigh finally realized he wasn’t right. A little late, but not too late.
And then Brian was always there for her. Whenever she needed something he was there to help, to watch over her, to let her lean on him. He was so perfect. Not perfect in that he was godlike and flawless, but perfect in the sense that he was a good man who had faults, but his love was true and his faith was strong. He was such a sweet guy. Intimidating at first, with his broad build and tattoos, but kind and gentle and loving underneath. His and Leigh’s relationship was great. They started out as friends, then became pretty much best friends, and then Leigh realized what she was feeling for him was more than just friendship. Her realizing this, and me reading Brian looking at her deeply, made my heart go pitter patter and long for them to come together with love.
This novel wasn’t perfect. The pacing of the plot was disjointed sometimes, the dialogue stilted at times. The execution wasn’t amazing. But, the emotions were very apparent, the characters endearing, the romance sweet and beautiful, and the spiritual messages inspiring. I would recommend this book to any LDS member who loves a good romance. Don’t read it for the brilliant plot and wonderful writing. Read it for the love and spirit you will find. ...more
Seraphina was a beauty. And not just because of the beautiful writing, or the characters I came to love, but also because of the emotion suffused intoSeraphina was a beauty. And not just because of the beautiful writing, or the characters I came to love, but also because of the emotion suffused into the story. There is so much heart in this novel, in the characters, that it took my breath away, and I was literally swept away into this fantastic world of dragons and humans striving to coexist, yet harboring ill feelings toward the other because it is their nature. And defying this nature is a seemingly impossible feat.
Here enters the heroine of the story, Seraphina, who is harboring her own secret that could threaten to destroy her if anyone found out. Her mother was a dragon, her father a human, making her a very rare person, as dragons and humans do not mix. The very thought is unheard of, and disgusting to both dragons and humans. Yet the unthinkable happened when Linn fell in love with Claude, and Seraphina was born. But knowing that she is different, doesn’t keep her from excelling. She rises above this horrid secret, always striving to do her best, and trying to unite the two diverse groups.
There are moments when her secret becomes too hard a burden, from lying to the people she cares about, to trying to understand dragons better, while still wishing that she wasn’t one. There was one part where Seraphina realizes something, and her hatred of her dragon half is more than she can bear. She tries to cut her scales, and then, with great difficulty and pain, she pries one scale off. Even thinking back about it, it makes me squirm. Hartman, through that scene, was able to make me hate the dragon part of Seraphina, and I saw the revulsion and hatred that Seraphina has for herself, which prevents her from truly accepting who and what she is. I sympathized for her, and I wished that she could find someone, a friend, who could love her even despite her dragon half, and accept her, scales and all. And that moment did come about. One of my favorite parts of the novel was the end, when (view spoiler)[Lucian gently takes Seraphina’s wrist and kisses it. (hide spoiler)] That was a beautiful scene, showing that if someone can love her despite her scales, then so can she.
I loved how music was incorporated into the story. I have a thing for music in novels. It brings a special beauty and wonder to the story. I find myself being drawn in deeper with its musical tones, and lilting songs. Even though it’s only presented to me in prose, I can feel the music, and how it affects the characters. Seraphina especially, as this is her specialty. She tutors Princess Glisselda in music, and is assistant to the choir director. And when she plays her instruments, it fills her soul with vivacity and love. I would love to hear her play. It would be an unforgettable experience.
Princess Glisselda is one character I enjoyed immensely. She’s energetic, and seemingly naïve, but when placed in positions when she must fall into her role as heir to the throne, you can see the majestic queen she will become. She’s determined to do what is morally right, while being diplomatic, while keeping a measure of her innocence within. Her engagement to Lucian was created for political advancement, and while they are fond of each other, and perhaps love each other, I never felt that there was any romantic love. I felt that Lucian understood Seraphina better. What they have is something that is blooming into love, and it was beautiful, and executed well. But of course there are complications, seeing as he is engaged to the princess. But, I feel that Glisselda would be understanding, and maybe even support them.
Emotion is a big player in the novel. Dragons are emotionless. They don’t understand human emotion; they think it’s beneath them and their intellectual minds. But through a few dragons human eyes, we see them discover emotion, not understanding it, but not being able to turn away, because they are feeling something, and it’s broadening their understanding of humans and the world. As a reader, being given this fresh view of emotion made me connect with the novel more, because I was feeling those emotions. Then there are the human’s feelings (Seraphina, Lucian, Glisselda) about the dragons, and the evolution of those feelings as they’re given new insight about them.
The world-building was spectacular. The base of the story really did read like a classic fairytale with knights in shining armor, damsels in distress, and dragons. In a very loose, light way. The world Hartman created takes this storyline and turns it upside down, mixing everything up, while still retaining a ring of truth to the classic tales. We have the knight in shining armor, Lucian Kiggs, captain of the Queens Guard, who protects the royal family, and in a way, Seraphina. Then there’s the damsel in distress, Seraphina, who is distressed with her secret, and hideous dragon parts. And then, of course, dragons. But then it has political intrigue, and religion, and a murder mystery, and words of wisdom from past literary scholars in their world; all of which was handled with tact and skill. Not being too complex with the politics, or being overbearing with the religion. There was one line Lucian quoted from a scholar that I particularly liked. “Let the one who seeks justice, be just.” That could be applied to everything. If you want to be treated kindly, you must be kind to others, if you want to be loved, you must love, etc. Basic law of reciprocity. If you look closely, there are deeper meanings to be found in Seraphina.
I am just, in awe of this book. It was incredible, executed with finesse, created with love. I enjoyed every second of it. With beautiful prose, Hartman spun a tale reminiscent of fairytales, darkened with dragons, and hatred, lightened with music, and love, infused with breathless wonder, underlined with excitement. This book deserves so much praise, and I’m glad to be one singing my love of it. I would reccommend this book to fantasy lovers, dragon lovers, and people who like mysteries and mind puzzles, kind of like Bitterblue. I hope that you endeavor to step into this wonderful book, and I hope that you come out of it completely enthralled. So, bravo Rachel Hartman, you’ve won me over, and I cannot wait for Dracomachia
*10-3-15. Note: upon my second reading of this book three years later, I found I didn't love it as much as I did the first time. Not sure why. This time I felt it a little boring, with some boring characters...I don't know. I can't really explain it. I still liked it, I just don't love it.*["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>...more
This ‘review’ is not a review of the book, but more of my emotional journey through reading it and upon finishing. For those of you who have read theThis ‘review’ is not a review of the book, but more of my emotional journey through reading it and upon finishing. For those of you who have read the Mistborn trilogy, I think you can empathize with what I felt. For those of you who haven’t, I ask that you do yourself a favor, and feast upon these books. For they are truly the most amazing books I’ve ever read.
Before the end, I was going to write an absolutely glowing review full of caps lock and exclamations points and gifs and pictures and my singing glorious praising to high heaven to clearly show my ultimate love and devotion for this book. But I just can’t, I can’t.
I am hurting. I’m in so much pain. Never before has a book put me through such emotional turmoil, rendering me to a sobbing, terrible mess, with my heart ripped to pieces, bleeding on the floor, my chest aching, my mind, near in shock. I didn’t want this to happen. I didn’t even consider something like this, especially of this magnitude, happening. Sanderson put me through hell. But I cannot hate him. I cannot hate his prowess in making me go through all of this pain, and yet leaving me with feelings of indescribable joy and breathless wonder. I closed the book with such a wonderful feeling of satisfaction and completion, not wanting in anything save for that I didn’t want it to end. It was a difficult journey, yes, but any journey worth making is worth the trials. And this particular journey, was most possibly, the most rewarding journey I’ve ever been on in the literary world I thrive on.
When a novel really makes me feel, it becomes more dear and precious to me than any other book. It shines brighter, dark as the tale may be, tearful as it may make me. But that is what readers are looking for. A story that speaks to their heart and soul, pours emotion into them, making them feel everything the characters are feeling, and lingers well after the last page. And this is what I treasure. Any novel that can do this to me, even though it may not be the best written or executed, is one to be cherished dearly. This novel stands out though. Not only does it make you feel deeply, it has outstanding world building, an incredible cast of characters that you love dearly, and a brilliant execution of a story that leaves you in breathless awe.
I knew this series wasn’t all happy endings and rainbows and light. It is a terrible, dying world with an unknown force beating upon it. Horrible ramifications will happen, there is no escaping them. There is no hope of creating a happily ever after for everyone, and creating a world anew without some type of destruction and loss. People die, thousands of people. People you care about. My heart was torn out and trampled on. And it’s still trying to put itself together again. This is a dark tale. Sanderson doesn’t paint it light. He shows you what becomes of a world destroyed, what happens after its thousand years of relentless abuse. But, even then, even through all those dark moments, there are moments of light, of love and joy and laughter. And hope. Faith and hope, I believe, is the core of the novel, what makes all the characters press onward in hopes of a brighter future. The mists, the darkness are ever pressing on them, but they never give up hope. They never stop believing that all could be well if they but fight to secure it.
I can’t write this review and not talk about the characters. I can’t talk specifically about what they did that I loved, or their personal thoughts and journey, lest I spoil the book. But I can say that I adore these people with every fiber of my being. They are not just characters moving a story forward, they live and breathe and are REAL. When they were in pain, I was in pain. When something terrible happened to someone I loved, I cried, my heart raging inside, aching and furious at what was happening. But oh how wonderful they are, how glorious their stalwartness and love and self-discovery over the course of their lives.
One such person, whom I love and respect and praise, was Sazed. Dear Sazed. Your soul searching quest was perhaps the most riveting and saddening. I ached watching you despair and lose your hope that you had held onto the whole of your life until something devastating sent your doubts flying, your faith failing. But it all paid off! Everything you learned, discovered about your life’s devotion of studying religions. Therein was the faith you needed, you just had to look at them with a new light, a different perspective. And I loved what you became. It was so perfect for you, and made my soul soar with happiness.
And then Vin and Elend. Their characters were brilliant. Their outcome, their destiny, jaw dropping, and… I cannot say more on them. You need to discover this on your own. You will come to love them, and you will ache deeply when terrible things happen to them. But the pain is not all for naught. You have to feel pain for them to connect you to them, to make them real, to make the story and their characters believable and entrancing. The ending was heartbreaking, but so perfect, it couldn’t- shouldn’t- have happened any other way. And even though thinking that disheartens me, it was remarkable in its execution, and ended with a perfect brush of the light and new found joy that I was so desperate to find. With the ever present mist and ash and red sunlight, I yearned for the characters to find their blue sky, and yellow sun, and green grass. They never knew of those things. With a thousand years of red sky and brown landscape, such things were preposterous, laughable. Vin believed in it though, because Kelsier did. And this vague image of a better, brighter, lively world full of color, brought them a measure of hope and desire that fueled them in their desperate actions to find this better world, where Inquisitors and Ruin cannot abound, and where peace and light reign.
One last character whom I thought was brilliantly crafted, even more so after his death, was The Lord Ruler. I never could have imagined his role in the story, his true intentions that were misunderstood by those seeking to overthrow him. Sanderson created the most unbelievably cruel, good villian. He is not what he seems, and is only a pawn of something even more devious and cunning and ruthless than he ever could be. The whole plot, how everything came together, the realization of what certain things meant, was utterly brilliant. It’s mindboggling to think that someone could concoct such a story, such a world, being so attentive to every single little last detail that is essential in making the world work and have no problems in its making and telling. Sanderson is a mastermind genius. I could never be as superb as he is, but I hope I could be half, or a fourth, or a hundredth so brilliant with storytelling and drawing people in.
I almost forgot Spook. Erica, what are you thinking? Ah, Spook, you captured my heart. You became the man I was hoping you would be. You never lost yourself, but you became so much more. And I loved it. I loved your growth and love you had and strength. You, with Elend and Sazed, are my hero.
I sincerely urge you, plead you, to read the Mistborn Trilogy. It is so outstanding and perfect and thrilling, you will find you cannot stay away from the world once you enter, and will dread leaving it. What truly, is more amazing than these books? Though I have read them just this year, and there are still thousands of books out there to read, I have a feeling I will not find another read more brilliant. And though I don’t read much epic fantasy (which I think will change soon), I believe the Mistborn trilogy stands out in this genre, and is more than worth reading and loving. They have become my favorite books ever; nothing I’ve read comes even close. And this is why I wish everyone on earth would read these books. I will recommend it to everyone I can. When I love a book so deeply and desperately, I can’t not tell everyone of its brilliance, and that they MUST read it. And you must. You must if you want a book that arrests you completely, and leaves you with such deep emotion and love and wanting more. I can’t praise these books enough, and I hope I have been able to sway you to read them. You will not regret it, trust me. ...more
Warning: this review is long, and may contain spoilers of Mistborn. If you don’t read it, let me tell you the gist of my rambling praise. Read this boWarning: this review is long, and may contain spoilers of Mistborn. If you don’t read it, let me tell you the gist of my rambling praise. Read this book. Now. Or forever regret your decision. And now, for my stark love of this awesomely stupendous book.
This book is utterly brilliant. Brilliant says I! I bow down before Sanderson for his startling ingenious mind. I cower before him. I envy him, I admire him. He is my ultimate role model in how to write a novel that will stand out for its uniqueness and awesomeness, and rises eons beyond any other novel that attempts and fails what Sanderson has truly conquered. If there were gods in the world of literature he would be one. I honestly can’t even fathom someone having the kind of mind that can create such a complex world with every single tiny detail attended to and worked into the plot with preciseness and care, no stone left unturned. If you read this book and didn’t rate it a glowing five stars, you are obviously very delusional or very very stupid… I’m just kidding. Really. I don’t expect everyone who reads this book to love it the way I do. I’m really not kidding. I will hunt you down and force you to love with it with my awesome Allomantic power of Soothing!
At the end of Mistborn: The Final Empire, the tyrant Lord Ruler was slain. His reign ended, the years of planning of overthrowing him, overcoming and sometimes failing many obstacles finally paid off and the characters succeeded. The people were free. With this death, you might think the aftermath to be one of rejoicing and happiness and the building up of a new glorious kingdom of equality and joy. But in a downtrodden world which had seen 1000 years of distress and slavery under the rule of a god who showed no mercy, a world with no hope, how can a happy world be expected, be achieved? The ruler of implementing such misery is destroyed, but his world is not, his effect on the people, his legacy, it’s still there. They may have achieved the impossible in killing him, but the real work is only beginning. It would take a tremendous amount of effort and pain to undo what has been rooted into the world and people’s lives. And try they do. The characters fight with everything they have, rising above themselves to secure even a morsel of peace.
This book starts with Elend, now king of Luthadel, looking out over the wall surrounding the city as an army approaches. Soon, another army comes, and so begins the fight for Luthadel. This book is not so action packed as it is about political intrigue. If focuses on the armies, on how to defeat them, how to keep King Elend on the throne. And I was enthralled with it all, with the intellectualness of the characters, of their thoughts and decisions. But interplaying with this is of course Allomancy and mistborns. And then underlying that is an ancient old prophecy, that may, in the end, be their downfall. There were many unanswered questions in Mistborn upon realizing who the Lord Ruler really was, and what happened when the Hero of the Ages failed in acquiring the power of the Well of Ascension and using it to defeat the deepness resulting in the Final Empire with the Lord Ruler ruling. In this novel, the answers are explored in a beautiful, incredible unfolding, that leaves more questions, which undoubtedly are finally completely answered in the next installment and which I am desperate to know!
The Awesome World Building What makes this novel stand out is its world building. It’s layered with perfection and so much depth. Sanderson has done more than just create a fantastical world, he’s built a whole history of a people and an empire, a society, a way that people live, where they have religion and legends and wars, and several different races of people and creatures. And he probably has much more that he planned out, that isn’t in the story, because it’s not necessary for the reader to know, but is necessary for the author to know to truly understand his world, and be able to weave a tale that makes sense and has no hitches in its telling. What’s sad in the literary world (*cough-ya authors-cough*) is that people don’t take care in plotting out their world. They have an idea and they run with it before they have a chance to sit down and find all the elements that is needed to mold their story into something worth reading and writing. Not so here. Sanderson didn’t just whip out this story once he had the idea. It took years. And, correct me if I’m wrong, I believe he actually had written two separate books, both containing some elements from what is now the Mistborn trilogy. Then he wove those two stories together and came up with this brilliance. That doesn’t just happen in a couple years. I appreciate his hard work. It certainly paid off.
The Amazing Characters The world building may have cemented the books worthiness in the epic fantasy genre, but it was the characters that were the heart of the story, the force that drove it forward and commanded your full attention. Not a single character, main or minor, was two dimensional. Everyone had so much depth and emotion swirling inside them that they were tangible people. They were real, they breathed life into the pages, making this more than just a fun story to lose yourself in. We see everyone’s insecurities, their strengths, we feel their love and shame and unworthiness and pain. I cried. I cried when certain people died near the end, and feeling the other characters sadness. I was shocked, when the spy’s identity came out. (though that person ran through my head with all the other potential suspects I briefly thought of, I never really considered it would be that person). I was won over with Vin’s and Elend’s love. This novel toyed with my emotions, it broke my heart, made me smile, and made me so so anxious to know the outcome. It. blew. My. Mind.
Vin I cannot fully express the love I have for Vin. She is my hero. She is the role model for females who wish to rise above their terrible pasts and become a strong, confident, kick-butt woman that people everywhere will look up to with respect and awe. She’s ridiculous. She has so much power, and she doesn’t shy away from doing the gritty work and killing people. But she has so many layers. Outside she’s viewed as this savior, the heir of the Survivor, THE mistborn. But to those who know her, they see the doubts and fears she has. And only to herself she sees who she thinks she really is that no one could understand. She thinks herself unworthy of Elend. How could he possibly love a killing machine like her? He with his stalwartness in believing the good of people, of being kind even to those who betray him or belittle him. And then there’s Vin, who kills people who so much as looks at Elend wrong. And this starts to eat at her. Who is she? Is she a weapon used at Elend’s disposal? Can she ever be her own person, not having to be called upon when danger arrives and be the one to defend everyone? But in the end, she realizes that her being the protector, the knife, isn’t from her being forced or expected, it’s because she needs to protect those she loves, because she wants to.
Elend Elend. Oh Elend. He is my guy. He is sweet and caring, not foolhardy or rude. He has so much belief in himself and his people that they will do what is best, even if that means taking him from the throne. But that does not mean that he stops fighting, because he never does. He has become so much more than the book learned, disheveled young noblemen who had ideas for change, but never had a chance to implement them. I loved seeing his slow transformation into a man who is stronger, more sure of himself, one who stands true to his standards and will not let other people sway his beliefs, one who now takes command and demands people obey him (not in a tyrant way, but in the way that he is king, and when one is king, one must take charge and be firm and not let people tell you no if he ever hopes to build up a great, unified kingdom). And the next book only promises even greater things form him, and I can’t wait to see where Sanderson takes us in Elend’s journey of discovering who he is.
Sazed And then there’s Sazed. Dear Sazed. My heart broke for you. For your tremendous pain and shattered hopes and beliefs. You who was the man of faith, who helped people find a reason to believe, to have hope after Kelsier who was the hope was gone. You fought bravely, you stayed true to your ideals, allowed yourself to love. And then everything you once knew to be true was crushed, crushed along with the one you loved. What will become of you? Pray, don’t let this utterly destroy you with no chance of redemption. Stay strong. Find your faith again. Please don't become a shell of the great man you were.
The End Now let me tell you one thing that was absolutely win in this book. Most of the book is the build up for the inevitable battle over Luthadel. It’s a slow one, yes, but it doesn’t kill any of the intrigue or other action happening. But when the battle comes, it really comes. There is no downplaying it, or staying on the sidelines. Sanderson takes you straight into the heart of the battle, watching as men are slaughtered, as endeared characters die, as Sazed fights! That was so awesome, seeing him in that way! Sanderson doesn’t shy away from what happens in battle, even when the people you may care about have to die. And Vin was her usual ridiculously fantastic mistborn self. And then the end, THE END! Ah, my heart was nearly ripped out of my chest! (even though, of course that couldn’t actually happen, duhhh. Who’s still alive and kicking in the next book, hmm?) But still, seeing Elend and Vin’s pain and their ultimate decision for what they knew had to happen, no matter how much they didn’t want what would be the outcome broke my heart. Ah, but you see, it all worked out. Sort of. She may have unleashed something terrible, but they didn’t die!
Annnnd this review is too long. Why does that always happen with the books I furiously love? Alright, just some little other things I liked.
The Kandras. The spy, and the suspicion of who it could be, and who it actually was.
The Koloss. And Vin’s sudden brilliant realization in battle of what she can do to them.
TenSoon. So, he may be bad..ish. But he showed good inside him, didn’t he? He has the potential to turn his ways, and I really hope we see more of him. And I just loved his whole character even though we didn’t know who he really was.
Tindwyl, and hers and Sazed’s relationship.
Zane. Even though he’s so so bad.
The part when Elend is in the Koloss camp and kills a Koloss and his ridiculous explanation for doing it. That got me laughing.
Clubs. Spook. Breeze. Pretty much every character.
Ah heck, I LOVED EVERYTHING! AND I CAN’T PUT DOWN EVERYTHING I LOVED BECAUSE I WOULD BE QUOTING THE WHOLE DANG BOOK! Which obviously means that you have to read the book to fully understand my love and discover your own love for it. But seriously, this is one those books (series) that will stand the test of time, that will forever be loved, and Brandon Sanderson will always be revered for his brilliant works of art. Yes indeed. ...more
Well, this is the first time that I’m not gushing about my love for one of Colleen’s books. It feels so wrong to not love Tiger’s Destiny. But for cerWell, this is the first time that I’m not gushing about my love for one of Colleen’s books. It feels so wrong to not love Tiger’s Destiny. But for certain reasons, I couldn’t. This is really weird for me to say this, because I’m one of the biggest fans of this series. The first three books I loved wholeheartedly, I couldn’t get enough of them. They left me breathless and excited. And I was so flipping excited for Tiger’s Destiny. But, to tell you the truth, I was actually worried that I wouldn’t love Tiger’s Destiny like the other books. I felt that if things didn’t change, and I didn’t get what I wanted, this book would end up disappointing me. And in the end, it did disappoint me, and I felt a little angry too.
I didn’t hate the book. I just don’t know how much I like it. There were moments that I loved, that were so awesome, and kept me riveted. The mythical, magical aspects of the story enchant me, and kept me reading excitedly to see what would happen, and how it would all connect. I’m actually rather intrigued with the plot. It’s not the best executed, but it’s pretty interesting. My favorite part was probably the last battle with Lokesh. Houck managed to rivet me with the fighting scene, and of Kelsey fighting. And what happened after the fight ripped my heart out. I knew that it would not, could not end that way. Yet still I cried, my heart crying out “NO! NO! NO!” Because this book was able to elicit such strong emotions in me, and make me invested in needing to know the outcome and how this journey will play out, there’s a little bit of love for Tiger’s Destiny in me. But there isn’t very much, and it isn’t very strong. And I’m so sad to say that. It’s rather depressing, actually.
I always knew that Houck’s writing wasn’t the best. It’s good, but I could see so much room for improvement. And I think since Tiger’s Curse, she’s improved a little. But I honestly don’t think it’s going to get much better. Her writing seems to have plateaued, and that doesn’t bode well for her readers who are wishing for something more, something better, and are being bogged down a little by the writing. It’s really not that terrible. There’s a nice flow to it, and Colleen is able to keep me interested, so her writing has to at least be pretty good. I just wish that I could see a bigger improvement in her writing.
The thing that drove me bonkers, and made me literally want to scream in frustration, (and was the main reason why I couldn’t love this book), was the triangle of love. Before TD, I immensely enjoyed the love triangle between Kelsey and her two tigers. I truly felt that it was the best triangle I’ve read about. It just seemed so logical, and real, and Houck did a fantastic job at making me fall in love with both men. I thought it was well done, and added to the story. *And now come some spoilers about this situation.*(view spoiler)[Now, I am so angry about the whole thing, because it is still. Not. OVER! I was desperately hoping that it would end in TD. That was my biggest hope for this book, and it never happened. (Of course, the arc I got didn't give me the ending, which will have her ultimate decision [I suppose to make me more excited for the actual release, and to make sure I buy it, I guess], so I didn't get to see Kelsey's choice which is the only thing I wanted from the whole book, and is the only thing I didn't get). And that’s why this book failed to completely enrapture me, and made me a little angry. But, I do have to confess, that part of the reason for my not liking the book so much, is because the whole book, Kelsey was with Kishan. (hide spoiler)] Kelsey and Kishan together was never able to give me those romantic, heart fluttering moments that I always got when Kelsey was with Ren. I love Kishan. He is a fantastic character, I love his personality, I love seeing how he’s grown and learned through this journey and through loving Kelsey. BUT! I love Ren so much more. He is my man. I don’t know why Kelsey can’t just wake up and see how much he ardently loves her, and break open her thick head and realize how much she loves him and can’t stand being apart from.
Kelsey, she just rankles me. I honestly don’t know why, when the love she felt for Ren was so true, and powerful, she would desert that love, (several times I might add) and decide to be with another man that she does love, but a love that just doesn’t compare. She’s so stupid. I really just want to strangler her, knock her upside the head so her thoughts get straightened out. Come one girl! Make up your dense mind! ARghhh!! Okay, so she really makes me angry. But, in truth, I like her. I like her character; I’ve liked seeing her growth. And in TD, she’s actually a pretty mean kick butt heroine. And I admire her for that. That’s part of what made this book so exciting for me. I just, don’t understand her heart and the choices she makes about the men she loves.
I didn’t exactly like Kishan’s character in this book. He was always acting jealous. Even when he had Kelsey claimed as his own, he was jealous of his brother, and was continually staking his claim. I think Kishan is acting that way because he’s afraid. He’s afraid that he’ll lose Kelsey to Ren. Because he knows that the love Ren and Kelsey shared was real, and no matter how much she loves Kishan, the part that loves Ren will always be there, and will never diminish. And his love for her can’t quite compare to Ren’s love. I can understand his fears. And I do sympathize for him. I guess I just wish that he would wake up, and realize that he deserves better than being in a relationship with a woman who isn’t 110% committed to and in love with him.
If you have read Colleen’s other books and didn’t like them, I can pretty much guarantee you will not like this one. It’s basically the same thing. So to you readers, I would not recommend this book. There are other books you can read that will be worth your time. To the fans of the Tiger’s Curse series, well, I believe there will be some of you who will wholeheartedly love and devour this book. I didn’t. But that isn’t to say that are others who won’t. And I have to say that I’m glad there’s only one more book. Not that I’m saying I’m tired of the series, and just want it to end. Because I love this series, I love the adventure, and for the most part the romance. I’m just ready for the love triangle to end.
Note: I recieved an arc from the publisher via Edelweiss. Thank you!["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>...more
Yeah, it was alright. I mean, if you like that kind of thing. If you like brilliant novels, with outstanding writing and storyline, and fantastic charYeah, it was alright. I mean, if you like that kind of thing. If you like brilliant novels, with outstanding writing and storyline, and fantastic characters, and, you know, a katana wielding girl riding on a thunder tiger in a Japanese steampunk layout. *shrug* If you like that kind of book, I suppose you would like this one.
So, Stormdancer was quite a roller coaster ride. A really thrilling one that you just want to ride again and again. It’s the best steampunk book I’ve read, (not that I’ve read a lot of steampunk, but still, amazing steampunk). It’s the best book I’ve read that is Japanese inspired, (not that I’ve read a lot of Japanese inspired books). It’s the best book about thunder tigers I have ever read. Although, this is the only book about thunder tigers that I have ever read, so I guess that’s not really saying anything. Except for the fact that that makes this novel original. So I guess it’s a good thing, that I haven’t read a book that is similar to this one. Okay, you know what? This book one of the best YA books I have read.
I can’t say it’s the best, (for me), because a lot of violence and gory scenes aren’t really my thing. But when I find a novel, or show, that is bloody and violent, and has an amazing plot and story, and fantastic characters, and powerful emotion and relationships, I fall hard for the story. And the blood doesn’t bother me as much. Stories like, the Mistborn trilogy. That has some pretty graphic scenes, but the story is brilliant. And like the TV show Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood, (I haven’t read the manga). That, is a very bloody, violent anime. But I love it, because the story is amazing and emotional. Stormdancer, is like these. It’s violent, but amazing. So I loved it. Like a lot. And I could definitely see this playing out in anime form, or even live action. Either way, it would make an awesome show.
I fell in love with the Japanese culture. But it was a little hard to envision everything, because there were a lot of Japanese terms that I had no clue what they were, so the pictures in my mind were missing things sometimes. But the picture I did get, was still awesome. And Kristoff’s writing certainly helped. He wrote with deftness and grace, crafting an amazing world with fantastic characters and folklore. On that note, Buruu, the thunder tiger, may have been my favorite character. His presence is incredibly impressive. But his emotions are what got to me. You can see his mind, and you can understand him. I loved his relationship with Yukiko. It started out very rocky, and dangerous, but evolved into something beautiful, and I want to see more of it, and see it strengthen even more.
And I loved all the other characters. I loved Yukiko. She was a strong character, who still showed a little weakness, but she had incredible depth, and powerful love. And her love may be hidden, but she truly cares for people, like her father. That was another relationship that I liked. They don’t have a good relationship, but at the end, things are revealed and understood, and it was beautiful. So, yeah. This novel was pretty much amazing. I think it will resonate with and impress many readers. And I can’t wait for the sequel. And, perhaps, news about a movie deal? Hmm? So, my hat's off to Mr. Kristoff; you did yourself proud.
Thank you to Netgalley and St. Martin's Press for the arc!
Well, Torrent was decidedly better than its two predecessors. While I did like Waterfall and Cascade, I never found something completely arresting thaWell, Torrent was decidedly better than its two predecessors. While I did like Waterfall and Cascade, I never found something completely arresting that stole my attention and love. I honestly wasn’t expecting too much from Torrent. I believed I would like it as I did the other books, but not come to love it and smile so because of it. Although, that said, it still didn’t manage a five star from me. It wasn’t absolutely stunning and brilliant in its execution and writing, but slowly, mayhap without my notice, I began to connect with the story and the characters, and found some small treasure within its pages.
I suppose part of why this novel spoke more to me had to do with the romance. I really felt it more than in the other books. It felt a little too quick, and though I did like Marcello, and he certainly was attractive, and very nearly swooning inducing, he didn’t quite latch onto me. But then in Torrent, particularly the last half, I felt the love more, and his charm and overall hotness that leaves women fanning themselves. His romance with Gabriella became more believable to me, more right. And I couldn’t help but smiling through it, through their interactions and declarations of love. It was rather nice, and beautiful. Although, side note, I don’t really dig the long haired look, tied behind their neck. I never really did like long hair on guys. Some men though, can get away with, and look good. I’m thinking Aragorn. Mind, with his scraggly hair, not his perfectly groomed hair. With Marcello, I just wasn’t really seeing it. I’d have to actually see him to determine if liked I it or not.
I really admire Gabriella. She never was and never became a TSTL heroine who needs the hero to always save her. She is one of those girls in high school whom boys never look at, but then suddenly in her new life, or whatever the story is, is the center of attention with boys left and right wanting her. But it didn’t feel too cliché, or tiring. Bergen was able to make it work without inducing eye rolls from me. Gabi was so strong, so deft with her sword fighting skills, and so determined to save those she loves, to do what she needs to do, not relying on her hero to get her out of predicaments that she landed in. It’s so nice to read about a girl like this, it makes the adventures, the romance, more exciting and refreshing.
One thing that I wish there was more of was Lia and Luca. That is a romance that I would like to see firsthand, because they’re just so cute together, and it would have been nice to watch their feelings grow alongside Gabi and Marcello’s. Oh, and one person I ended up loving, though I probably shouldn’t have, was Lord Greco. Ah, Greco, you, above Marcello, for some strange reason, stole my heart and sent it racing. Why? What was the point of that? No matter what, I knew Gabi and Marcello were meant for each other and that they would, despite your efforts to prevent that. But you, with your ridiculously good looks, and smoldering eyes made me wish I was Gabi right then. Gabi, dear, since you chose to not have him, may I? I would forever be grateful, and deliriously happy. Ah yes, hopeless romantic that I am, fawning over fictional characters that most likely do not resemble any man in this here real world of mine. *sigh* Why can’t you smoking hot men who are good all around and go for the not most beautiful or riveting girl be real!?!
So, despite a few little misgivings upon reading this book, I’m glad they were squelched. The River of Time series was a nice time travel story set in medieval times (which is one my favorite settings, by the way, which most certainly helped in my liking the series). I didn’t utterly love it, it didn’t become one of my favorite series, but it definitely wasn’t bad, or stupidly ridiculous like other books I’ve read. I enjoyed reading it, and was nicely surprised to love it at the conclusion. ...more
The Merchant’s Daughter gave me the same feeling as did The Healer's Apprentice. Melanie’s stories of love and Christianity are beautiful in their simThe Merchant’s Daughter gave me the same feeling as did The Healer's Apprentice. Melanie’s stories of love and Christianity are beautiful in their simplicity that manages to sing out with perfect love. Love of Christ that urges the characters to strive to live and better their lives and help others, and the love between the two main characters that make me smile and sigh and ache for them to be together, to love completely with no hindrances. I realize this book, as a Christian story, will not appeal to many readers, but as a Christian myself, I delight in stories like these. That are full of soul and love and are clean.
I’ll admit I didn’t read this book for the outstanding plot, or the brilliant execution thereof. The plot is a little weak, some of it I didn’t quite care for, some scenes could have been elongated, shown more emotion, or just dismissed. But it was the characters that livened up the story, that gave me the desire to read to the end and see their happily ever after. And the romance. I love a good love story, and this one was beautiful, so sweet and romantic and fun. It had me smiling, and had my heart aching for Ranulf and Annabel and for their blooming love that had a hard time fully manifesting.
This tale is based on Beauty and the Beast, and reminded me slightly of Heart's Blood, (which is an incredibly brilliant novel that you should read.) Fairytale’s are one of my favorite kinds of stories, and this rendition was most beautiful. Ranulf made a great beast, scarred and misshapen with a sad past and a cold, angry demeanor. Annabel was a strong heroine who was sweet, shy at times, but not afraid to love that which most people fear.
The ending was a little rushed. It certainly could have used more substance (even so, it still had my heart dancing at their romance). But all in all a beautiful end to a wonderful book. I believe anything Melanie writes, I will wholeheartedly love.
This arc was provided by the publisher via Netgalley. ...more
That ending. Curse that blasted ending! I knew it was going to happen. I thought it might before he first played that trick on her. Then he played thaThat ending. Curse that blasted ending! I knew it was going to happen. I thought it might before he first played that trick on her. Then he played that trick, and I thought, oh good, it probably won’t happen now, why would Bracken do that after he tricked her? And then, she had to go and do it. And my heart broke. And who knows what’s going to happen in the next book? Gah. I hate endings like these.
So, The Darkest Minds, was a novel I was highly anticipating. I completely fell in love with Alexandra’s debut, Brightly Woven, and honestly would have much preferred a sequel to that novel than a new series. But alas, we got a new series. But not alas, because this book was pretty much awesome. I was not expecting a story like this. A modern dystopian book with kids who have magical abilities. Hello! Bring on the fun and adventure. Ah, but no. Not that much fun. Because (slight spoiler? I don't know. not really spoilery, but, oh well.>(view spoiler)[kids being leveled down in spurts of blood after being holed up in camps/prisons because of their freakish abilities is not fun. (hide spoiler)] But--it was adventurous, and fast paced, and I couldn’t put it down. I loved the story line, and the dynamics in the characters.
Hmm, the characters. I loved them, I loved all of them. (Maybe not the bad guys, but even then, they were written so well that I applaud Alexandra’s skill). Ruby was amazing. She’s hurting from a terrible past, and a terrible present, and can’t believe that anyone could possibly want her, especially once they find out the real truth about her. But she doesn’t let that completely destroy her. She keeps pressing forward in hopes that she can control herself, and maybe, maybe have a future with people she loves. Like Liam. This was a romance that I loved. They want to be with each other, but she fights it, because of course she can’t, not with who (what) she is. But then the romance does evolve, into something beautiful, achingly so. I loved the buildup up their relationship, and how Ruby’s feelings for him grew, and then blossomed. It was perfect. And Liam, I love him too. He’s kind, and caring, and accepting. I loved his character. And I loved Chubs, and the friendship that formed between him and Ruby. And little Suzume. I’m pretty sure she’ll show up in book 2. She just has to. Along with CHUBS! and LIAM! *hint hint* Yes. I’m going to assume they will all be there.
Now, my emotions while reading this wonderful, dang gruesome book. Sometimes I really hate loving gruesome books. Gruesome sad books that make me cringe, and cry inside as my heart shatters to pieces. I hate reading (hearing) about kids getting hurt. And for some reason they can’t control, or explain, or get rid of! It’s not their fault they have these abilities. So, pretty much, there were some parts that still make me cringe, and I would like not read them again. Upon re-reading this book (whenever that may be) I may just skip those parts. And then the ending! Yep, made me cry.
In the end, I loved this book. When a book makes me fall in love with the characters, and the romance, and plays with my emotions, makes me cry, it more than likely will end up being a book I love. And that this book did, and so I did. So I can’t wait to read the sequels, and find out how in the heck is this all going to work out!
... Oh my gosh, Black is the Color is FINALLY on goodreads!! Now I can add it as must read, and anxiously waiting for, and...2013? Seriously? That long? Ah well, I am so flipping excited!!
Edit 4/21/11: And now it's going to be made into a movie!! So exciting :D And the book might be released in Summer 2012? Oh please please please please...
Edit 11/20/11: Uh, sudden different title, why the change? I mean, it's cool and all, The Darkest Minds, kind of foreboding, but Black is the Color was an awesome title. And, well, on IMDB it's still Black is the Color. http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1907629/ Sooooo, I guess we'll just have to see, now won't we? Either way, it's gonna be an awesome book.["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>...more
Gail Carson Levine, I must say, is one of my favorite authors (at least when I need a cute, light fairytale type read). Her books are sweet, and enchaGail Carson Levine, I must say, is one of my favorite authors (at least when I need a cute, light fairytale type read). Her books are sweet, and enchanting, and just purely fun little fairytales. A Tale of Two Castles was no exception. It had that special magical quality that Levine’s other books all possess, simple in its light fairytale esque feeling, yet beautiful with its engaging writing and endearing characters, complete with an intriguing plot, at first perhaps simple, but at the end, quite brilliantly played out and executed.
Elodie is a 12 year old girl, traveling to the kingdom of Lepai in hopes of becoming apprenticed as a mansioner, an actress. After arriving at Two Castles, with an excess of cats roaming the streets, she is unable to acquire an apprenticeship, and is instead employed to the dragon, Mastress Meenore, the Great, the Unfathomable, master of inducing and deducing, able to find any lost object, solve any riddle. When his Lordship’s, the ogre, dog goes missing, Elodie assists IT (the dragon, which is called IT as only ITself knows ITs gender) in finding the dog. And thus ensues the mystery of finding who stole the dog, who poisoned the king and set the cats on the ogre, who mauled the ox, with a rather surprising ending to keep you on your toes.
Elodie is a strong young girl, who starts out attempting to fulfill her dream of mansioning, but finds her true calling in inducing and deducing, which she acquires by interacting and being with IT, and hearing IT’s own deducing of mysteries. For a 12 year old, she is quite astute and determined.
The world Levine created was delightful and enchanting. The writing will strike some people as too simple, but I love it for its simplicity and the magic found within. And it’s just Levine’s style of writing, with stories geared toward younger teenagers and children, and not older teenagers or adults looking for epic stories with a lot of depth and stark, passionate emotion with though provoking messages. This book isn’t for everyone, but fans of Levine will surely love it, and those looking for light fairytales. ...more
Lies Beneath was, overall, a nice read. It wasn’t as intense or fantastic as I was hoping, but in the, I found that I did like it.
Calder i(more a 3.5)
Lies Beneath was, overall, a nice read. It wasn’t as intense or fantastic as I was hoping, but in the, I found that I did like it.
Calder is a merman who, with his three sisters, set up a plan to exact revenge upon the man who was the cause of the death of their mother. Their plan is to have Calder cozy up to the family they’re hoping to destroy. But when Calder gets to know the older daughter, Lily, he begins to feel something, and finds that he can’t imagine himself causing her pain by killing her father.
Reading the novel through the male’s point of view was a nice change, and I enjoyed it. I didn’t quite connect with Calder (at least not until the end), and so couldn’t completely emerge into the story. But that doesn’t mean that it wasn’t a good read, because it was. I think a lot of people will love this book. I just missed the wave a tad too late I think.
I did like Brown’s world and description of mermaids, and that she didn’t shy away from darker themes. These mermaids are murderous, especially the sisters. Their hearts are set upon revenge and they will stop at nothing to get it. One thing that I did not like, though, was the little twist with Calder’s sister, Tallulah. But I also know that it won’t bother other people as much as it did me.
I did like Lily. She was a strong, unique girl. I liked her firm opinions, and dressing however she very well pleased because she doesn’t care what other people think of her. The romance though, wasn’t quite believable. It felt a little too fast for me. But at the ending, I ended up liking it, and finally seeing the love the two had for each other.
Also, the twist at the end was fantastic! The end is what firmly caught my interest and made me like and appreciate the book more. I can honestly say that I’m excited for the sequel. I think Brown wrote a good, original novel that will quickly become a favorite to many readers.
Thank you to Random House Children's Books and Netgalley for providing me with an arc. ...more
There’s a kind of holiness to love, requited or not, and those people who don’t receive it with gratitude are arrogant beyond saving…I held fast to thThere’s a kind of holiness to love, requited or not, and those people who don’t receive it with gratitude are arrogant beyond saving…I held fast to that fact too, held fast and then, in the last seconds, let it go. I released my thanks into the air like birds, with the hope that, if they didn’t find Martin, they’d at least add themselves to whatever accumulation of goodness might be out there.
Love Walked In wasn’t what I was expecting, I was expecting something sweet and cute, and it was, but it was so much more. This is the type of book that you read for a light read, that has fluff and sweetness, but you come away with so much depth. It was achingly beautiful, smile inducing, thought provoking, with beautiful messages that delved into my mind. I just loved this book! It was such a beautiful treat, scrumptious and elegant, inquisitive, mouthwatering in its grace and beauty soaking the pages, infused in the characters minds that just bled onto me, melting my heart.
This book wouldn’t have made such an impact if not for the endearing, lovely characters. They were all so superb, with so much emotion and depth and feelings that I felt so acutely. I loved Cornelia for her look on life, for her love for the people around her, for her spunk, for her big heart inside her little body. I loved Teo for his, hmm, swoon worthiness, for his shyness, for his quality of listening to people and not saying what is expected, but letting them know that what they feel is right, because it’s what they feel, and to not be afraid to show it. And I loved Clare, for her sweetness, for her childlike nature, yet her adult like look on life. She see’s deeper than other eleven year olds, but her heart still cries out for her mother like any other child, despite what the mother does to them. Such a natural, binding feeling and instinct between any mother and daughter. I ached for Clare for her loneliness and pain, but I smiled at her for her strength and determination and love.
This book slowed me down markedly. Because I found the captivating need to savor every single word Marisa wrote. Each carefully constructed word chosen with such care. The prose was beautiful, strung into an oh so beautiful story that captured my heart. The writing was just so incredible, stellar, shining like a star in the bleak trials of life, shedding light into the characters lives, giving them something to love, to look forward to, to have a reason to not give up.
Marisa has a round about way of getting to the point she’s trying to show, but she does it skillfully, amazingly. I didn’t mind one bit her veering off course a little because of the added information. I became engrossed with these little details and stories, I lingered on every word, and when she finally got back to what she had started talking about before she went off on a tangent, the added details made the point she was getting to more meaningful, giving the point some background, supplying the reader with information that the character knew that we would have to know to really understand the point.
This book is just beautiful. It’s lovely, and sweet, and heartbreaking. It isn’t a stunningly brilliant read, nor does it have incredibly deep messages that will change your life. But it does have it’s moments of inspiration and depth, and so much love. It really is based on love, and that is partly what made the book so endearing to me. The love the characters felt and showed, the love they already had and knew, and the love that grew in their hearts as they met someone new. Hence the title. Love Walked In. Because love does walk in, several times in the course of the book, in different ways. Each character is affected by it, and made stronger and better because of the love walking into their life.
Content warning- There is swearing (almost to the point of taking the enchantment out of the story for me, as incessive swearing usually does when I read it in any book), and some talk of sex, but nothing explicit....more
I loved this book :) It was a sweet romance Christian story. And actually quite inspiring. I’ve only read a few of these Love Inspired Historical bookI loved this book :) It was a sweet romance Christian story. And actually quite inspiring. I’ve only read a few of these Love Inspired Historical books, and of them, I think this one speaks the most about God, and has the most powerful transformation that, honestly, brought a couple tears to my eyes. It was very nicely handled with heartfelt emotion. I could understand J.T.’s unwillingness to let God into his life, but then seeing his changing heart, his growing understanding and realization of God’s love, and what J.T.’s love for Mary really means to him, just made me smile with love and endearment. All of the characters were just so real, and what they did and thought made sense, and the development of them was done wonderfully. Mary was such a strong woman. J.T. had hurt her, and she was so determined to never let him have her heart again, but as she began to see this changed man, she began to have hope. The love story was beautiful, but it wasn’t without its hardness and regrets and pain. And Mary’s little brother Gus also became endearing to me, with his stutter, but then watching him overcome his embarrassment and finding courage. The end left me smiling and with a feeling of contentment. If you’re in need of a light, yet heartfelt Christian romance story, I highly recommend this book. ...more