*BEWARE OF SPOILERS BELOW*
Aurora Burning continues pretty much straight after Aurora Rising finishes off. Tyler and the rest of Squad 312 are trying to figure out their next move, find out what the weapon is that the Eshvaren left and save the universe.
For me it’s not so much about their main goal, which is to inevitably save the universe but the little adventures they find themselves in on the way. I love seeing our rag tag crew come together and become more comfortable around each other. Figuring out how they each fit in the squad and seeing the bonds they create with each other is wonderful to read.
Grief is definitely explored a lot more in this book, especially as Tyler and Scarlett come to terms with what happened to Cat. Having her reappear later in the plot to torment Tyler and for him to let her go was a touching moment.
I am so happy we get more of an in depth history about Ziva in this book. What happened to her parents and how she was able to save herself. Her perspective was so completely different from the others it was like a breath of fresh air in the plot. She really opened up a lot more in this book and we see her form more of a connection with her squad mates.
Kal is still one of my favourites. I am so glad we also got to find out more about his family and what he has had to endure during his life. Especially with the introduction of his sister and the integral way she is thrust into the storyline. It was a little obvious to me who his father was going to be, kind of predictable and the ensuing argument was frustrating. But his relationship with Aurora is so pure and precious and I can’t help but be enraptured by him.
Aurora, though I am glad she is able to control her power and is able to understand how it works, I think the change in her is too drastic and it kind of pulled me out of the story. Walking straight up to the Starslayer completely sure she was going to succeed was a tad arrogant to me and I wish she wouldn’t have been so quick to write Kal off, they might have been able to come up with a better plan.
Overall there so many shocking twists and turns and moments that broke my heart. Some of the choices the characters make didn’t really sit right with me and I wish they would of went about things differently but it definitely raised the stakes and kept me engaged in the storyline. I am left with soooo many questions still and honestly I can’t wait to find out what is going to happen next!
⭐️4.5/5 stars I am still trying to process my feelings after that ending….
Into the Crooked Kingdom follows a girl named Tavia who sells dark magic on the streets for her Underboss Wesley. Until one day she uncovers a sinister plot that could detroy the whole realm and all the people in it.
I really enjoyed all of the characters in this book. They were all very distinct and you could differentiate between them easily. All being from different parts of the realm and having such varying backgrounds was really intriguing and definitely brought more depth to the storyline.
Tavia was one of my favourites. I think because she essentially introduced us into the storyline I was more attached to her character in particular. Her love/hate relationship with Wesley was very entertaining, I kind of wish they would of acted on their feelings or maybe communicated a little bit better. Wesley for a minute there seemed open to that idea but Tavia shut him down and walked away. I think if we had a little more romance in the plot I would have been more engaged.
Unfortunately there were times throughout the book where I wasn’t all that interested in what was happening and didn’t really care. Although we are given pretty high stakes and there was definitely a lot of twists thrown in there were long periods of not a lot happening and it made me zone out a little.
I also wish we delved deeper into the magic system and how it works. We are kind of given a lot of information but I felt like it wasn’t enough. Maybe if we were given the origin of the world a little more and how the different charms work. How the Kingpin came to power in the first place or learning about the different people in the world would of helped. How the crafters came to be and how many different clans of the Kin there are.
I came out of this book a underwhelmed. I felt like the bones were there for a great fantasy story and there were elements I really loved. The found family, the intriguing magic system, an evil overlord they need to defeat, but it didn’t wow me in any way. I am still interested enough in the characters where I think I will be picking up the next book but it’s not something I’m dying to read.
⭐️3/5 stars Not gripping enough for me…
I LOVED this!!!!
The Shadows Between Us is about a girl named Alessandra who is the second daughter of an earl who has a plan to seduce, marry and then kill the elusive king.
I just adored Alessandra’s character. Right from the start when we find out what happened between her and Henrik and then to see how comfortable she has become with her sexuality and not letting the men in her life use her for their own gain. She takes her life into her own hands and emerges from under her father and sisters shadows and forged a life for herself without their help or influence. I love how ruthless she is and how unapologetic she is about her appearance and demeanour.
Kallias really drew me in from the moment we first see him. He is quite enigmatic and seductive in a way with the shadows swirling around him. I’m a sucker for a dark, broody male protagonist and he really ticked all the boxes for me. I would of loved to learn more about him and go a little more in depth in terms of his abilities and why the skipped over his brother. The origins of his family’s reign which was discussed briefly, I just wanted more. I think the fact that he wasn’t intimidated by Alessandra and saw her as an equal was the icing on the cake for me!
There was the perfect amount of political intrigue mixed with those more high action sequences to keep me engaged and entertained. Too much of the court politics and political machinations can be a little dragging for me but I didn’t get that at all in this book. Because Alessandra was so spontaneous and has all of these secrets she is trying to keep on top of there was never a time I wasn’t invested.
I have to admit the investigation aspect regarding Henrik was resolved a little too conveniently; there was quite the build-up of anticipation regarding the murder and it was dismissed by Kallias with really no repercussions of Alessandra’s part. I was able to overlook it and still really enjoy the read but that was something that I noticed.
Overall I loved this, from reading the blurb I knew immediately that this was a book that I would love and I am honestly gratified that I have such a thorough understanding of my reading tastes!
⭐️5/5 stars the Slytherin romance we didn’t know we needed!
This was great!
Clap When You Land is about two sisters who didn’t know each other existed. Their father was leading a double life and would live throughout the year with one of his daughters in New York and then in the summer would go back to the Dominican Republic to be with his other daughter, until he tragically dies in a plane crash.
The tone of the book and the format was spectacular. Having the story told in verse I felt made the story that much more personal and poignant. It really connected me to the characters and made me so much more invested in them individually.
We see both Camino and Yahaira simultaneously having to deal with their father’s death and working through their grief. I loved the contrasts between the two sisters and learning how different both their lives have been even though they both have the same father. How he influenced them both separately yet they still have similar memories about his mannerisms and his overall presence.
Camino felt a little more passive and naïve to me. She is hopeful when she finds out about her sister and wasn’t as betrayed be her father than what Yahaira was. Her relationship with her Tia was wonderful to read and I just loved the fact that she chose to stay with Camino to raise her after her sister died even though she knew what her brother in law was doing in New York.
Yahaira had a bit more of that New Yorker attitude I felt. She really had to step up when her mother couldn’t cope with her grief and make sure that they weren’t being taken advantage of by their extended family. I think he anger with her father and her sister was natural but the fact that she overcame that and replied to Camino really showed her true character.
The overall theme of grief and sisterhood really impacted me and at times made me tear up a little. The scene in the rain where Yahaira, her mother and Tia went and saved Camino from El Cero was very powerful.
Overall this was a pretty fast read for me even though the pacing was a little stalled at times. I would of liked to get more time with the sisters actually together and getting to know each other a bit more as opposed to having the majority of the story with them separated.
⭐️4/5 stars Highly enjoyed, highly recommend!
Kingsbane continues pretty much straight after where Furyborn left off. Eliana is trying to come to terms with her new powers and Rielle is assuaging her guilt over the deaths of her father and the king by locating the legendary castings to fix the Gate containing the angels.
I just straight up don’t really like Rielle’s character. I can appreciate how she is pushing the plot forward but I find her to be incredibly insufferable. First of all having to be talked into saving the capital of Borsvall from the tidal wave by Ludivine and Audric, almost condemning all of those innocent people because she was outraged that they would dare threaten her and had absolutely no remorse doing so. Then slaughtering all of those Obex members because they were rightfully mistrustful of her after she weakened the Gate further. She has no humility and believes that her power gives her the right to just do whatever she wants with no repercussions and that doesn’t sit well with me at all. I’m very much on the Queen’s side about her thoughts for her.
Audric is just so blindly in love with Rielle that one or two little placations from her and he just dismisses all of the problematic things she says and does. Granted he does finally stand up for himself after finding out about what happened with his father but I felt like it was a little too late at that point. I don’t trust Ludivine at all at this point either. She stepped up and played more of a role in this book than the previous and I am curious as to whom she truly is and what her intentions are.
I MUCH preferred Eliana’s storyline compared to her mothers. Seeing her make her castings and tapping into her powers kept me very much engaged in the plot. Even though she was quite closed off and standoffish in the first book she starts to open up more and develops more relationships with those around her. She is still making some questionable decisions but overall I really like how her character is evolving.
Now we come to Simon. Once again he killed me in this book! I was always attached to him the most out of all the characters and he definitely took us on a journey of discovery in this book. We gain a little more insight into what he has doing all these years and the level of devotion he has for Eliana is touching bordering on the side of being a little too possessive. He really opens up to Eliana and they find salvation in each other only for it all to be ripped away and we discover who he truly is. UGH!!!!
I have to say Claire Legrand has masterfully developed each character and have given them all a purpose in the plot. The pacing was too up and down for me, we have large sections of nothing really going on and then all the action seemingly taking place all at once. I am still very much invested and can’t wait to find out what will happen next!
⭐️4/5 stars that ending …. WOW!