Last Year I Was Reading…

I seen this book meme over on Kristin @ Kristina Kraves Books and I just had to give it a go… It was originally created by Reading Marie!

It is so easy to join in and here are the rules:

Take your current read and compare it to what you reading this exact time last year. Which one do you like better? What is different about the books? Any special facts/things you want to make note of or bring attention to…

Blood Heir by Amelie Wen Zhao

The Girl in the Tower by Katherine Arden

Funnily enough these are both two books focused around Russian lore. One is a loose retelling of the myth surrounding Anastasia Romanov and the other is based upon Russian folklore and stories. Both are YA fantasy books that are a part of a series and I gave both of them 4 stars. I liked both books equally and highly recommend them if you are a fan of a whimsical and atmospheric tales!

🌼Spring TBR🌸

This week’s Top Ten Tuesday prompt is once again our Seasonal TBR. Down here in the southern hemisphere we are in Spring so these are the top 10 books I am going to try and prioritise over the coming months!

The Damned by Renee Ahdieh

Shorefall by Robert Jackson Bennett

A Song Below Water by Bethany C. Morrow

One to Watch by Kate Stayman-London

The Dragon Republic by R.F. Kuang

The Girl and the Stars by Mark Lawrence

The Rage of Dragons by Evan Winter

The Blinding Knife by Brent Weeks

These Witches Don’t Burn by Isabel Sterling

The Toll by Neal Shusterman

He Started It Review

*MILD SPOILERS BELOW*

He started It is about these three siblings whose grandfather has just passed away and in order to receive the inheritance he left for them they need to embark on the road trip they once took when they were all kids.

I liked the premise of the story, I thought it was super original and unlike anything I have ever read before. The build up of anticipation was very well done and the little twists that take place definitely kept me engaged and wanting to read more. I didn’t really know what to expect going into this book but I thought it would be a lot more intense than what it actually was.

Beth I was thinking was going to be a bit of an unreliable narrator, I truly thought at times she was a little bit crazy and as the storyline continued I definitely think she had some mental health issues that she clearly needed to work through. The way she was so obsessed with her sister came across as strange to me. But I guess if I were in her situation I may of ended up in the same boat, especially given the circumstances surrounding her disappearance.

The other two siblings I didn’t really form any kind of attachment to. I was definitely intrigued by them and wanted to find out the parts they played in the road trip and why they were all so hesitant in discussing what happened. They all had secrets they were clearly keeping from each other and Beth never really seemed to notice anything that was happening around her in regards to them in particular.

I would of liked to get more of an insight to their grandfather and his mindset throughout the course of the first road trip as well. As the book progressed we do get of sense of the kind of person he was but to get maybe one of two chapters from his perspective right at the end explaining the whys and how’s might of made me more satisfied.

I think overall this was a solid psychological thrilleresque book. I was 100% invested from the start and wanted to figure out what was happening and I definitely didn’t predict any of the twists and turns. I just thought the ending could of been a little stronger! We got so many interesting, weird things happening throughout and the explanation and reasons behind the whole thing was mundane and boring. Shocking, but boring nevertheless.

⭐️3/5 stars Immersive but in the end fell a bit flat!

⚔️ An Ember in the Ashes Series Reread ⚔️

I’ve just recently completed An Ember in the Ashes and I liked it better this time round. This is only the second time I have read this book since I first bought it two years ago and having read hundreds of other fantasy novels in the meantime made me appreciate this story even more! Right from the start I was highly invested in our two main protagonists and with the stakes gradually rising as the story continues there was never a point where I wanted to put the book down. This time around I was surprised by how much the deaths of all the masks affected me during the third trial. Seeing Elias’s anguish and torment with killing all of his friends and how willing some of them were to die really hit me in the feels. I love the Romanesque feel of the world and the war focused society and can’t wait to become more re-established as I continue on with the series. We get a little taste of the magic system and the lore surrounding the ghuls, ifits and djinn enough to keep me engaged but I’m definitely left wanting more. Overall I think this was a perfect introduction to a new series, we have high stakes, twists and turns and characters you can’t help but love.