In the walled city-state of Alu, Kammani wants nothing more than to become the accomplished healer her father used to be before her family was cast out of their privileged life in shame.
When Alu's ruler falls ...more
I love this freaking book and can we take a moment to love that cover?! I can't wait to have the finished copy in my hands! Anywayyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyy......
At times you do want to smack some people, including the main character, but that happens.
Kammani is the MC ...more
In the walled-city of Alu, traditionally three maidens get chosen when the ruler dies to accompany him into the underworld.
Essentially a death sentence, being chosen is nonetheless viewed as a great honor. When our story begins, the ruler is currently on the brink of death.
Kammani's father is a great healer, although disgraced after a former royal patient's death, he gets summoned to the kingdom to attend to the ruler. Unfortunately, he mysteriously disappears, never getting to ...more
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So, at first I was like , but then I was like , and then I was like , but then I was like , with a little bit of , and when I went to write my review I was like . Basically, the evolution of my disappointment with GRAVEMAIDENS. It promised me something dark and dangerous, and ended up being just another book in the long litany of the Basic Girl Fantasy canon.
**contains very mild spoilers**
GRAVEMAIDENS is set in a world that seems to draw ...more
Raise your hands to clap because there is a new author in the literature town and we should welcome Kelly Coon with open arms. Because we need good minds, creative genius brains and we ...more
This is the kind of commercial fantasy that you read, enjoy and then completely forget about. But I guess in this particular case I’m not allowed to forget about it because there will be a second and final book that will wrap up the story and decide Kammani’s fate once and for all.
To be honest, this book made me hate the concept of duologies. In some cases—rare cases—they work well and actually help deliver a good story without making the reader feel as though the entire book was cut ...more
I think my 3 stars are more a case of "it's not the book, it's me". I've read SO many YA fantasies touting unique ideas that promise a different sort of heroine, and unfortunately I've just read too many of these stories with the same basic girl dropped into a new setting. I think there are so many readers ...more
Unofficial comments: FREAKING AMAZING!!!!! I loved the cast of Gravemaidens so much, I'm not even sure who I ship! PLEASE JUST READ IT SO YOU CAN FANGIRL WITH ME!
Gravemaidens went on my wish list the second that I saw its cover. I had my fingers crossed hoping that I could get an advanced review copy. When I did I had the hardest time waiting until closer to publication to actually read it. After many of my most anticipated releases of the second half of 2019 wound up disappointing me I was so pleased when Gravemaidens turned out to be an incredible read. I am so grateful to be on ...more
pretty covers are my weakness
so are powerful women
exciement levels: through the roof
Thank you so much to Random House and Netgalley for the digital review copy in exchange for an honest review!
GRAVEMAIDENS tells the story of Kammani, a healer’s apprentice, who must use what skills and medicines she has to stop the king from dying—and taking her little sister into the grave with him. But when intrigue at the palace turns deadly, it will take all Kammani’s strength, smarts, ...more
The book that I’m getting ready to talk about explores the bond of sisterhood, and how one young woman will do everything in her power to save her beloved sister from a tradition that is drenched in beauty and death. Readers will also be treated to the power struggle between genders, and the strength that women have to overcome their struggles in a heavily misogynistic society. There’s so much to love about this story, the ...more
It took me so long to reach page 200 and I never got around to sympathizing with the main character’s goal to save her sister (I did not like the sister to begin with) and she’s supposed to be great at healing but she ends up not being that great... this confused me.
Sigh, was so excited for this one but it disappointed me. :(
This is the kind of book that would have been amazing, if not for a few reasons.
1. The female lead was veeeery frustrating.
Kammani is one stressed character. She’s the kind that will try to lift the world on her shoulders... ALONE. Sometimes, that’s a good thing but in this case, it was not. All it did was lead her into stupid decisions. It’s one thing to be brave but it’s ...more
I think what thrilled me the most about this book is that there was a big mystery. The world building was easy to follow and I had no problems remembering the characters.
I'm going to start with the warnings because there are some heavy topics in this book. I'm sorry if I miss any. Death, murder, torture/abuse/beatings/whippings, mention of suicide, young girls being sacrificed ...more
Well, this was a big fat NOPE.
Ok so, the story was unique. Three girls are chosen as maidens for their ruler. In this case, the ruler is dying. Therefore, the three girls will die with him, which is a huge honor apparently. Healer Kammani's sister is chosen, and Nanaea is all gung ho about it. But sister is like, nah, you aren't dying today, sis, and takes her father's place as a healer to keep the ruler from dying, thus saving her sister. ...more
Thank you, Delacorte Press, for sending my an ARC of Gravemaidens for review!
Holy hell, this book. THIS BOOK. What a beautiful story about love and sacrifice. I laughed, I cried. Sometimes at the same time. Review to come.
I am so excited that Gravemaidens is one of the Reader Voracious Novel19 Books! To read my interview with Kelly Coon about her debut and path to publishing, check out my blog post!
12/21/18: Excuse me, was this book written with my interests in mind?! This sounds like an ...more
The first half of GraveMaidens is quite slow, so slow in fact that my hopes started to dwindle that this would be a good book. Not to mention the main character made me want to pull my hair out, and her sister made me want to scream with how selfish she was. So, not a good start. The second half completely blew me away. I learned more about Kammani’s family and their past, and the story really started to pick up. I really enjoyed ...more
Gravemaidens definitely started off with a bang..but like small one. It sucked me in and kind of reminded me of Hunger Games a bit. Mostly because of the whole saving her younger sister from being sacrificed. Again, this was definitely a page turner in my opinion because HG was a bit boring to me (the first 500 times I tried to read the first book).
In it, you will meet Kammani, Dagan, and Iltani. There are a bunch of other ...more
Author – Kelly Coon
Series – Gravemaidens
Cliffhanger? - Yes
Publication Date – October 29, 2019
Genre – YA Fantasy
Rating – 4 out of 5 Stars
Complimentary copy generously provided by the author through NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.
My Thoughts - Story
Well, let’s start with the characters – Kammani, Dagan, Nanaea, and Iltani – these are the major characters of the story and my feelings for each one differs GREATLY!
Iltani – I loved her – absolutely she is my favorite ...more
This is a hard one to rate. The story was unique, but some of the author's word and phrasing choices made it difficult to immerse myself in the world. I'd stop reading and reread the line and think, "That's how you want to say that - seriously?"
I was also frequently annoyed with the main character's thoughts and actions. She was continuously facing attacks on her life and wanted to keep relying on herself. I wanted to shake ...more
The Boatmans' Refrain
The river is wide
The river is deep
I take their souls to earn my keep
The end of day
Is the start of night
I bathe in horror, bask in fright
Three queens of beauty
I'll hide their souls within my lair
For the river is wide
The river is deep
I take their souls to earn my keep
This is a great debut novel by the author! And the C O V E R... It's so enticing, beautiful and an open invitation on my book shelf!
After reading the first Chapter, I know I am in good ...more
“Gravemaidens” follows a family cast out of their wealthy society who have suffered loss after loss when the ceremony for the Sacred Maidens, three young women who will accompany the Lugal in death, threatens to take the only sister Kammani has left. Determined to keep her sister alive, she heads off to the palace ready to heal the Lugal by any means necessary ...more
This is, I think, the earliest ARC I’ve ever read – it doesn’t come out for almost a whole year! This was a solid debut novel with writing that flowed well (though there were some flies in the ointment.)
I’ve been giving out a lot of 4-star ratings lately, which is not like me at all – I’m a fairly harsh reviewer! But I’m lucky to have read so many amazing books over the last month.
Sixteen-year-old Kammani is the daughter of the only ...more
Gravemaidenswas quite the dark, entertaining story! I kind of fell in love with it, honestly. Look, I am going to go ahead and get my one negative out of the way first so we can get to the good stuff: It's kind of predictable. I wasn't ever really shocked by what happened next, but the story and the characters and the world were so engrossing that it really didn't make it any less ...more
YA author Kelly Coon (GRAVEMAIDENS, Oct. 29 2019 Delacorte Press, sequel 2020) is an editor for Blue Ocean Brain, a member of the Washington Post Talent Network, a former high school English teacher, ACT test prep book author, and a wicked karaoke singer in training. She adores giving female characters the chance to flex their muscles and use their brains, and wishes every story got the happy...more