Horribly awkward dialogue, minimal descriptions, and just about every turn of phrase and cliche you can imagine. The climax builds up to an ending thaHorribly awkward dialogue, minimal descriptions, and just about every turn of phrase and cliche you can imagine. The climax builds up to an ending that doesn't deliver. There are also many areas--particularly action scenes--where time jumps from one sentence to the next, making for a confusing read.
One thing I did enjoy was the closed-door love-making, in lieu of moment-by-moment updates. You never know if you're getting more than you bargained for, nowadays.
ETA: I also enjoyed the main love interest, despite his absolutely tacky lines. He isn't your typical mysterious and broody male character who can't show any emotion except rage. He actually has a handle on his emotions, can be sweet without being embarrassed about it, and prefers a level-headed approach to life. Kudos....more
"And what was it that Lord Death wanted and wept in his heart for?"
Be still my heart! The romance in this is sweet and beautiful and surprising and
"And what was it that Lord Death wanted and wept in his heart for?"
Be still my heart! The romance in this is sweet and beautiful and surprising and utterly unassuming. A lot of this had to do with the writing. Leavitt sure knows how to write to the soul! I found myself saving so many beautiful passages as I read.
This is one of those stories that feels like something a grandparent would tell on a long winter night. It has a good blend of reality and folklore. I almost put it down in the beginning because I tend to like more descriptive writing, but I'm so glad I didn't. The more I read, the more layers I discovered to Keturah and other characters.
There were a few parts that were bothersome--namely the end, when Keturah makes a huge choice without letting us know how she came to that conclusion. There were one or two hints along the way but we don't get to see her put them together, she just does. However, I was more willing to forgive that because of the folklore aspect. This is a common occurrence in many tales, and I was happy with the decision anyway. :) Though it's a prime example of why I don't often like these types of stories.
I do recommended this one as a sweet love story. But fair warning: as with any folklore, it's not without tragedy....more
A fun, adventurous story. Another reviewer likened it to the fantasy version of Ocean's Eleven (I believe she called it an LOTR/O11 cross), and I'd saA fun, adventurous story. Another reviewer likened it to the fantasy version of Ocean's Eleven (I believe she called it an LOTR/O11 cross), and I'd say that's absolutely correct. The action is fun but light, yet I was still agitated enough to need to know how things would turn out. There are a few times that called for a suspension of belief, but the action and turnout is well worth it. The characters are funny, interesting, and surprising. There are some flaws, but they were swept away by the enjoyment of the adventure the characters are engaged in. It is especially exciting to read as everything falls into place (or doesn't). :)
Note: non-descriptive talk of sex throughout the book (one of the magical creatures has a thing for virgins), and quite a bit of swearing at times....more
This is the second K.M. Shea book that I've read, and both have been severely lacking on descriptions of environment, actions, anLight but enjoyable.
This is the second K.M. Shea book that I've read, and both have been severely lacking on descriptions of environment, actions, and character feelings. This made for what seemed like huge jumps in character and relationships, where the characters move ahead in their developments but the reader isn't aware that they have moved on. This means that the various relationships that form suddenly are supposed to be taken at face value, which becomes irritating. The story teeters between a fairy tale--which, by form, doesn't go far into descriptions and feelings--and a full-fledged story, which gives descriptions and makes the reader feel what the characters are feeling.
However, it is that exact teetering that kept me reading. There was just enough of the fairy tale feeling to it that allowed me to suspend any agitation and continue enjoying the events that were taking place. Overall, I was entertained and am curious to know what happens next for Rakel....more
I thought Thierry took a step backwards in this book. I loved her for her strong will, her attitude, and especially forWarning: some spoilers follow.
I thought Thierry took a step backwards in this book. I loved her for her strong will, her attitude, and especially for her maturity. While I understand her reasons for feeling and acting broken in this book, it still didn't sit well with me.
Along with that, I didn't see how the attraction between her and the new love interest even began. It came right after he has played her, and before then she showed no feelings for him beyond a physical attraction. The old Thierry would have dismissed him as soon as he lied to her. I adored her relationship with Shaw, and loved the way they came together in the last book. Now a year has been skipped over, and all that is in shreds. If I'm being honest, I'd say that I'm not surprised at what happened...but I was still sad for it. I do like the new love interest and think he could be great for Thierry. I just wish it didn't begin in an Insta-love story of way.
As for the action, things get interesting in this story. I didn't feel as much tension from the danger as I did in the last book, but as Thierry says, this is just the beginning. I'll wait it out and see how the next book goes....more
The editing issues were even worse in this book than in the last. There were a lot of annoying things the mc did, constantly proving what a petulant cThe editing issues were even worse in this book than in the last. There were a lot of annoying things the mc did, constantly proving what a petulant child she can be...but the story had its shining moments, in regards to family, friendship, parenting, and relationships. Overall, it was a quick read and for the most part, I enjoyed the adventure....more
“What if we go on,” he said, “only to more pain and despair? What if we go on, only to find a horrible end waiting for us?” Aelin looked northward, a
“What if we go on,” he said, “only to more pain and despair? What if we go on, only to find a horrible end waiting for us?” Aelin looked northward, as if she could see all the way to Terrasen. “Then it is not the end.” -Queen of Shadows by Sarah J. Maas
*Caution: slight spoilers for the previous books in the series.*
When I began this series I had no idea what amazing characterizations I was in for. While I enjoyed the first book, I must admit that I didn't give the author as much credit as she deserved for the characters she introduces us to--especially Celaena. From that first book to now it has been such a pleasure to watch each and every character grow and develop. In this story each character is tested and stretched, ultimately growing right along with the MC. Even Chaol's arc, though annoying at times, is completely true to his character as he is forced to take a side for the first time in his life. His internal struggle becomes vitrolic, and he has to figure out what he stands for before being able to move forward.
Celaena herself has one of the strongest character arcs I have come across in all my reading. And you know what? I love her. I utterly admire the woman. In this story we find the post-breakdown Celaena; the woman who emerged from her own personal struggle in Heir of Fire. She remains the sassy and cunningly lethal Celaena that we all know and love, yet she no longer feels like she has to defend her past or her current choices. She has come to terms with who she is, and is now working to join that with the many facets of her past. She has always been the one who is able to make the hard decisions, but now she understands the ramifications of those decisions. In this book we see her begin to grow into her role as a queen, until she becomes one who is terrifyingly strong and wise, yet merciful and kind. She's come a long way from the traumatized and vicious girl she once was.
Just as in the last book, Maas continues her story with 3-dimensional, well-written villains; their nefarious arcs joining with many others to create a story that I literally could not put down until I had finished. Give me a good villain and I'll show you a good book. Maas has that here in Queen of Shadows.
I cried at parts; I cheered or gasped out loud at others. This world and these characters were alive for me as I read each and every agonizing detail of their lives. I debated whether or not I should read this one so close to having read Heir of Fire, as I had really enjoyed that one. I'm glad I picked it up, though, because I adored every moment.
When I began reading the first book in the series I didn't expect to become so enmeshed in the lives of these characters. Yet here I am four books in, and I find the story absolutely satisfying in every regard, even when it's tearing my heart open.
Read this if: ...you enjoy fantasy, strong characters, and having the odds stacked against you....more
The books in this series keep getting better and better. I adore fantasy, and this one fulfilled my need for a good fantasy, even reaching into the reThe books in this series keep getting better and better. I adore fantasy, and this one fulfilled my need for a good fantasy, even reaching into the realm of high-fantasy.
This one is a game changer. Different from the pace and style of the previous two books, it also introduces us to many different sides of Celaena as she is faced with her most formidable enemy so far: herself. It was great to see her stretch and grow in this book, promising a lot to come for her in the future. Many new characters and threats to Erilea are also introduced, as strings from the previous books are strengthened or tied together.
I enjoyed meeting the new characters, and was even surprised to find myself rooting for one of the "bad guys" in a way that I haven't since Jamie Lannister.
I wasn't too impressed with the many info dumps, or with the way the story seemed to drag on long after I thought it had come to an end (kind of like the last LOTR movie). I also quickly got tired of the paragraphs-long silent conversations Celaena had in her mind with people, and the overwhelming amount of growing or snarling every character seemed to do.
Yet I was swept away by the story, the urgency, the characterizations, and the deep well of pain that Celaena finds herself stuck in. I adore books that can deliver those raw, gritty, and realistic emotions. This one is now added to the slow-growing list of books that made me cry--which is one of the best recommendations I can give for those looking for realistic feelings behind a fantastical story....more
3.5 stars. Suffers from some serious continuity issues, but it is a fairly good read overall. I enjoyed the main character's strength and maturity, wh3.5 stars. Suffers from some serious continuity issues, but it is a fairly good read overall. I enjoyed the main character's strength and maturity, which is not something I have come across in my reading lately. While there is a lot of sexual tension you won't find the MC crying over imagined slights, nor will you find her romantic interest to be a domineering. he-man even if he is an incubus. I thought it would turn out to be another just-because relationship but instead there is depth to all of their interactions.
As for the rest of the story, I was pleasantly surprised to be surprised. Things didn't happen as I thought they would, and the story unfolded in an interesting way. I'm just sad it was so short as I would have enjoyed reading more. I know there is an entire series, but after spoiling the plot for myself in reading a few reviews I'm not sure I can handle what happens next. *Sigh* We'll see how I feel in a few days....more
***Spoiler alert. Lots of frustration in this one.***
There is something uniquely intriguing about this book, and that same thing kept me up reading it***Spoiler alert. Lots of frustration in this one.***
There is something uniquely intriguing about this book, and that same thing kept me up reading it all night. Yet there are more than a few things that are just absolutely annoying. I would honestly like to know how many reasons can one character have to cry or nearly cry in the same book. According to Raine, the answer is at least once per chapter. But I digress. I think it will be easier to just list what didn't work for me:
1.) The overwhelming sadness, watering eyes, and straight up crying. It was just too much. Couple this with impulsive coping tactics like running away childishly when faced with conflict. It isn't pretty.
2.) Magnetic, otherworldly, constantly pulling attraction beginning with the first glance, which leads to clumsy accidents and various embarrassments. One of the characters constantly teeters between chivalry and crazy possessiveness. I think I'm done with centuries-old immortals falling for the most immature and insecure girls around after only one conversation with them, and then having their restrictive obsession pass for sexiness. It's ridiculous.
3.) Cliches, characters around for convenience then forgotten, and passages that contradict previous passages.
4.) Parental cliches with one parent missing and the other parent conveniently not questioning odd occurrences. While I admit that this parent is much more tuned in than most are portrayed to be these days, she still withholds pertinent information that could have prevented a lot of heartache and troubles for the characters.
5.) Raine's treatment of Eirik is just horrible. In the beginning she didn't know what she wanted...but there was a definite line where she knew, and she kept stringing him along, (view spoiler)[and still hadn't officially let him go by the end! (hide spoiler)]
6.) Probably the worst of all was the ending. (view spoiler)[ After having gone through so much in their relationship, fate leaves one with no memory of the other. I get why this happened--and it's actually pretty genius--but I don't want to suffer through the will I/won't I stuff all over again. (hide spoiler)]
Okay so what kept me reading? Well, despite all of this I'm still a fan of some good tension and an intriguing story. So while Raine bugged me to no end, I still wanted to see how things would turn out, and what parts of Norse mythology would be used. It was pretty interesting to see the story between the pages of the story unfold--if you get my meaning. I'm totally invested in some of the secondary characters, and how their stories end up. And if I'm being completely honest I have to say that as much as I hated the ending, you can bet I'll be reading the next book just to figure out how on earth they get past that. Dang curiosity!["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>...more