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!
Anastacya Mikhailov is the crown princess of the Cyrilian Empire and is one of the Affinities; gifted with abilities to control the world around them which are deemed unnatural and dangerous in their society. Ana’s affinity is one of the deadliest and most abhorred the ability to control blood.
Ana is one of those female protagonists that acts without thinking and lets her emotions get the better of her, which really annoys me. If she would have just stopped and thought about the consequences of her actions there wouldn’t have been as many obstacles for her to manoeuvre around in order to find who she was looking for. She has definitely had a lot of trials in her life but she has also a bit unrelatable because up until a year ago she was a princess. I did appreciate how she became aware of everything that is going wrong in the empire and how affinities are being treated and forced into slavery.
I really enjoyed Ramson’s character. I liked that we actually got a lot of his background and how he came to be in Cyrilia. There is a reason behind why he has made some of the choices in his life and we see the repercussions of his decisions continue to affect him now. It was obvious to me that he would end up with feelings for Ana but it was gradual and made sense in the context of the story.
I was invested in these characters right away and wanted to find out what was going to happen next. The pace was just a little up and down and pulled me out of the story a little bit. I appreciated the world building that was included as well, how descriptive the prose was really immersed me into the story line.
I found the plot to be predictable yet still entertaining. I think the spin on the original tale was quite refreshing in this fantastical setting. It was a solid start to a new series and I am left wanting to know more which is always a good sign. I feel there is definitely room for this tale to expand and become even more compelling!
⭐️4/5 stars Pretty much what I was expecting!!
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
*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!
I joined in the last round of the Buzzwordathon and when I saw the announcement video for the final round I knew I had to participate again! It will be held from Monday 21st through to Sunday 27th so for next week I will just pause on the Bookopoly and pick up the three books I could find in my TBR that match the Buzzword which is NIGHT … I am super excited to be participating again and will hopefully be reading some great books!
A Torch Against the Night by Sabaa Tahir
Night Film by Marisha Pessl
The Language of Thorns : Midnight Tales and Dangerous Magic by Leigh Bardugo