A Darker Shade of Magic by V.E. Schwab

DarkerShadeofMagicTitle: A Darker Shade of Magic

Author: V.E. Schwab

Genre: Adult, Fantasy

Publisher: Tor Books

Release Date: February 24th, 2015

Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

Goodreads Summary: Kell is one of the last Antari—magicians with a rare, coveted ability to travel between parallel Londons; Red, Grey, White, and, once upon a time, Black.

Kell was raised in Arnes—Red London—and officially serves the Maresh Empire as an ambassador, traveling between the frequent bloody regime changes in White London and the court of George III in the dullest of Londons, the one without any magic left to see.

Unofficially, Kell is a smuggler, servicing people willing to pay for even the smallest glimpses of a world they’ll never see. It’s a defiant hobby with dangerous consequences, which Kell is now seeing firsthand.

After an exchange goes awry, Kell escapes to Grey London and runs into Delilah Bard, a cut-purse with lofty aspirations. She first robs him, then saves him from a deadly enemy, and finally forces Kell to spirit her to another world for a proper adventure.

Now perilous magic is afoot, and treachery lurks at every turn. To save all of the worlds, they’ll first need to stay alive.

Hey everybody, today I am reviewing A Darker Shade of Magic (obviously lmao) that is neither Contemporary nor Young Adult, who am I?

I buddy read this book with my best friend and we both had a blast and I can honestly only recommend buddy reading books with friends because books make life better. Anyway, starting this novel, I already loved it. I loved from the first page how magic based it was. This is my first ever Adult and it wasn’t that big of a step up since our main character is 21 and I’m 17 so it wasn’t too dramatic of an age gap, still it was different.

There’s so much that I loved about this book. I personally didn’t think that the beginning was slow, but I can understand why people would think it is. V.E. Schwab has to do a lot of world building, especially since it’s the first book, so not that much happens at the beginning, but the world building is crucial. At the beginning I didn’t really get the 4 Londons 100% but now after having read the book, I know like everything about them and I know what’s what and how everything works.

In this book, we follow Kell and Kell is a very powerful magician, obviously, he’s an Antari. But when he shows us his powers, V.E. Schwab’s writing didn’t make it seem like he was showing off or anything, she showed us that he spent a lot of time studying his powers and becoming an amazing master over them. He is in such harmony with his powers, it makes the book even better. Plus, Kell has this amazing friendship with the prince Rhy and I love that so much too because they don’t have childish fights or unnecessary drama like all YA’s do, it’s super refreshing to read.

Plus, while we’re already talking about the writing, the writing in this book is so good. It’s so beautiful. The entire time while I was reading it, I just thought about how truly perfect that it is. I read this book in German so it wasn’t 100% her writing, but it had her scenes and how she created them, and they were amazing. They weren’t too detailed, you could easily picture the scene infront of you, it was great. Plus, usually when I read books in German it takes me a little bit longer since it is German, but not with this book. I read this book extra fast and I loved it.

Every character in this book was so fleshed out. None of them blended together. All of them stood out from each other perfectly. I love Lila so much and I can’t wait to read more about her and I kind of like how impulsive she was, plus her banter with Kell was amazing. V.E. Schwab creates amazing villains, reading scenes about the Dane twins made me scared for my life. She created Rhy, the prince of Red London, the ‘magic’ London, and barely gave him any powers. Everything was so great.

Another thing to note from my reading experience was that every time I opened the book, I was immediately in the story. Every single time. I would open it real quick when I would be packing my bag in the morning and then I’d read 3 pages super quickly without even really noticing it. This book is so action packed, it has a great overall pace and I honestly think it’s a masterpiece. If the following books are like this, or even better, it will 100% without a doubt be on my favorite book series of all time list because I honestly just thought it was that good.

I definitely recommend this book. If you’re like me and you mainly focus on reading YA, you will love this because of how refreshing it is from the usual YA genre. You just really have to keep in mind that the beginning is slightly slower due to the world building, but it’s still interesting and I had a great time reading it. I can’t wait to continue the series. 🤗🤗

❌ DNFing A Book For The First Time ❌

blood promiseHey everybody, today I am here to talk about my experience with Vampire Academy 4, Blood Promise by Richelle Mead. Don’t worry, there won’t be any spoilers, I just thought it would be fun documenting the first time I’ve ever DNF(Did Not Finish)ed a book.

I mean, it’s not really the first time, I’ve had 2 other books before, Inkspell by Cornelia Funke and Tape by Steven Camden, but with those books I never actively made the choice to stop reading them. I actually put Inkspell on pause because it was summer and I didn’t want to be reading a 700+ page book during the summer after having fallen asleep while reading it, in the middle of the day, not at night and I just wasn’t in the mood for Tape. But then later I realized I’m never going to be picking these books up again because I just don’t care enough and I don’t want to put myself through that.

But today, Sunday, October 14th, 2018, I actively made the decision to stop reading Blood Promise. My first time trying to read VA 4 was back in May and I really wasn’t in the mood for it back then either but I thought that was because a certain character was missing and I was still upset about what happened in book 3, so I took a break until now. I have been trying to read Blood Promise for the past two weeks, and it took me two weeks to read 100 pages. I never felt like reading it, every time I did the only thing I wanted was to stop reading it, I didn’t have fun.

And that’s when I realized, if I’m not having fun reading the book, then it’s over. It already took me two weeks to get through Six of Crows and I really didn’t have that much fun while reading it either, but I really liked the characters and it was just the plot that bothered me so I was able to see past it. With Spirit Bound, it’s so boring, I would always rather do homework. Then today in the morning while I was trying to just push myself through the book, literally skimming paragraphs and sometimes skipping them entirely, I realized I couldn’t do it anymore. I didn’t care enough.

what if it's usI picked up What If It’s Us by Becky Albertalli & Adam Silvera yesterday and in the subway, I was having so much fun reading What If It’s Us, I didn’t know what to do with my joy. I was laughing, I actually wanted to pick up the book, I haven’t felt this way since A Darker Shade of Magic which I read a little bit less than a month ago, but honestly feels like eternities to me. And because I just had no more fun whatsoever reading Spirit Bound I actively decided to stop, I already gave it 1 star and put it on my Goodreads read list, and even though I technically didn’t 100% read the book, I made it over halfway through and the fact that I made it that far honestly is enough for me to put it on my read.

I haven’t had fun reading in such a long time, I’m so glad that I’m reading What If It’s Us now, I really forgot what it felt like to actually want to read a book and not see it as a chore on my to do list. I just wish I would have realized this earlier, then I wouldn’t have wasted so much time.

Anyway, if you’re not having fun reading a book, don’t read it! I’m going to read the summary for VA4 and then still continue the series because I do like the characters and all my friends told me that the fourth book was awful but the fifth one was really good again, don’t be afraid to DNF books, I know I was, but now I just feel so much better knowing that I never have to touch VA4 again.

🏷 The Book Blogger Memory Challenge Tag 🏷

Hey everybody, today I am here with a short and quick tag that I found over @Booklovingnut because quite honestly I forgot to prepare a post for today, oops. This looks fun so let’s just jump right in!

Ruler: You must answer these questions without looking anything  up on the internet and without look at your bookshelves!

1. Name a book written by an author called Michael

Wow, I am totally blanking on this, I am not off to a good start. I feel like I might need to check this one because I honestly don’t think that I own any books written by a Michael.

Well after checking I found the Alchemyst by Michael Scott. I really liked that book when I read it a couple of years ago, I just totally blanked on the author. I’m usually not up to date on the books that I own in German.

2. Name a book with a dragon on the cover

For this I am going with two answers to make up for the fact that I had zero for the first one. I’m going with Eragon by Christopher Paolini, because there’s a huge dragon on it, and on my copy of Seraphina by Rachel Hartman there’s a dragon on it, I’m not sure if the English version also has a dragon, let me check. Okay, it does, all good!

3. Name a book about a character called George

Wow, it’s a lot harder when George has to be the main character. These are such random names, I really hope I find something. I only know about the book George by Alex Gino, but I haven’t read it yet but I think the main character is George.

4. Name a book written by an author with the surname Smith

Such a generic name yet so hard to place. It’s also more annoying that every time I say ‘Smith, Smith’ my brain automatically jumps to Sam Smith. Oh! I just remembered Jennifer E. Smith! I haven’t read any of her books in so long, they have really pretty covers though.

5. Name a book set in Australia

Oh my god yes finally one that I can answer right off the bat. For this one I’m going with Words in Deep Blue by Cath Crowley. Such an amazing book, plus I loved the fact that it was set in Australia.

6. Name a book with the name of a month in the title

November 9 by Colleen Hoover. Wow, this came out so long ago and I’ve owned it for so long but still haven’t read it. I used to really like Colleen Hoover, but I read her books so long ago and I’ve heard really bad things recently, I don’t know what to think anymore.

7. Name a book with a knife on the cover

The Knife of Never Letting Go by Patrick Ness. Not only is there an image of a knife on the cover, the word knife is also on the cover. 😉

8. Name a book with the word ‘one’ in the title

Just One Day by Gayle Forman. I never finished this book, I put it on pause and maybe if I’m ever in the mood for it again I’ll read it but I remembered not really enjoying what I read so idk.

9. Name a book with an eponymous title

Okay so I had to look to find out what eponymous title means and it basically means that the name of the main character is also in the title of the book. For this one I’m basically going with the entirety of The Lunar Chronicles except for Stars Above by Marissa Meyer. Maybe I’ll only go with Cress though, such a great book and I feel like I don’t talk about it enough.

10. Name a book turned into a movie

To all the boys I’ve loved before by Jenny Han! Yes! Read this book!

This challenge is kinda tricky, but also really fun, I would suggest you give it a go aswell! Good luck! 🤗🤗

 

The Beauty of Darkness by Mary E. Pearson

the beauty of darknessTitle: The Beauty of Darkness (The Remnant Chronicles #3)

Author: Mary E. Pearson

Genre: YA, Fantasy

Publisher: Henry Holt and Co.

Release Date:  August 2nd, 2016

Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

!!! SPOILER WARNING FOR THE ENTIRE REMNANT CHRONICLES !!!

Goodreads Summary: Lia has survived Venda—but so has a great evil bent on the destruction of Morrighan. And only Lia can stop it.

With war on the horizon, Lia has no choice but to assume her role as First Daughter, as soldier—as leader. While she struggles to reach Morrighan and warn them, she finds herself at cross-purposes with Rafe and suspicious of Kaden, who has hunted her down.

In this conclusion to the Remnant Chronicles trilogy, traitors must be rooted out, sacrifices must be made, and impossible odds must be overcome as the future of every kingdom hangs in the balance.

Slow and steady truly wins the race. This was a fantastic conclusion to the series.

Although the book sometimes felt like it was too long, I feel like that was my fault because I never read books that are over 600 pages. Every scene made perfect sense and I have to say the last chapter was the best one. I love Kaden and Pauline, Rafe finally won me over and I hope we get to hear more from our team in the spin off series that is already out by the time this review is being posted.

Still, I can’t shake the feeling of how much the Komizar reminds me of the Darkling, and how similar the series are in that point. I truly loved Rafe’s and Lia’s devotion to each of their kingdoms and I was crying by the end, heart broken that they couldn’t be together.

I loved the characters, it was great to see some familiar faces. Sure, there were a lot of deaths and it was really heartbreaking but I really think I this was a solid series conclusion. I laughed, I cried, I had a great ride and I think this series will make it to my favorites of all time.

🍂 Fall Time Book Recommendations 🍂

Hey everybody, today I am back with another blog post and I will be sharing with you the books I think are perfect to read during autumn. They’re not necessarily set in the fall time, but I feel like the atmosphere is perfect for this time of year, so let’s jump right in!

TheRavenCycle

The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater

The Raven Boys is set in West Virginia, and you think it couldn’t get less plain than that, but Maggie Stiefvater creates this great atmosphere. I feel like the magical realism in this book is great for this time of year, plus I feel like Fall is a really chill season, so it’s a good time to just read a few books of the Raven Boys.

vampire academy

Vampire Academy by Richelle Mead

I feel like with it being Spooktober and all, it’s a perfect time to read a story all about vampires and a vampire boarding school, a setting I always enjoy, and even though the books aren’t scary, they’re perfect for Fall.

It only happens in the moviesIt Only Happens in the Movies by Holly Bourne

I feel like Summer is the time for lighthearted contemporaries. Contemporaries that are only there to entertain, that maybe don’t have that much depth to them, contemporaries that just plain fluffy. But I feel like now is a great time to really read It Only Happens in the Movies and really understand everything in that book. This book is one of the best UKYA’s out there, and I can’t do anything but recommend it. Trust me, the end will leave you satisfied.

the kiss of deceptionThe Kiss of Deception by Mary E. Pearson

With Summer winding down, fall is generally a more slower season. And this book doesn’t have the quickest of paces, so I feel like it’s perfect for this time of year. The world building is phenomenal, the characters are perfectly crafted and I read this book around the same time 3 years ago, and it really helped with the atmosphere.

obsidian-by-jennifer-l-armentroutObsidian by Jennifer L. Armentrout

Of course I had to come here with some good ol’ Lux series. If you haven’t picked this series up yet, now is the prime time to do so. Seriously. The series starts in Autumn near the beginning of the school year, now is your time. Aliens and a Virginia setting are perfect for this! Pick it up and finish the series in time for The Darkest Star and trust me, you will not take very long to read this series.

So these were my recommendations for today. I love Fall because now I can get into Higher Fantasy again, although right now I kind of want to read contemporary to take the edge off of school, so let’s just see what I end up doing. I hope you enjoyed my blog post, ’till next time! Bye 🤗🤗

 

WWW Wednesday: October 10th, 2018

Hey everybody, today I am back with another WWW Wednesday, and it’s so uneventful. I’ve got like 0 reading done, school is so stressful right now and I always have so much to do. When I’m finally done with everything, it’s 9PM, like right now, and I have no more energy to read. School sucks.

BTW, WWW Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted over on Taking On A World Of Words.

The Three Ws are:

What are you currently reading?
What did you recently finish reading?
What do you think you’ll read next?

Currently Reading: I’ve been currently reading Blood Promise for over a week now and I’ve read 80 pages. I have zero time. School is so stressful and time consuming, I don’t know if I’ll be able to manage and have a review up every Monday for a year like I hoped I would. Last year around this time I stopped posting because I stopped reading because I had legit no time. Plus, Vampire Academy is kind of boring right now. What I want to happen isn’t happening and it just feels like such a filler book. The only thing I really like about this book is the characters. I’ve been starting a lot of series recently, so I keep being introduced to new worlds and new characters, it’s just so nice to be around characters I’ve known for a while.

Recently Finished: I finally finished Six of Crows, hate to break it to you, I didn’t really enjoy it. It took me ages to trudge through that book, I’m glad I got it done. But that’s really all I didn’t like about it. I love the characters, they have such thought out personalities and they never blended together, I loved that so much. I also didn’t like how there was kind of no subplot. This book was really only about a heist that took place over the course of a few hours and that just bothered me. The last 100 pages were really good, if only the 350 pages before would have been like them. 3 stars 😦

Next Read: My next read will definitely be What if It’s Us by Becky Albertalli and Adam Silvera. I feel like that will be a really quick book or just generally a quick read because that’s what Beckys books are always like for me. Plus, I’ve read so many fantasies recently, I’m really ready to change up my game and read a gay love story.

Thanks for reading my WWW post, let me know what you’re reading! Bye, 🤗🤗

The Raven King by Maggie Stiefvater

the raven kingTitle: The Raven King (The Raven Cycle #4)

Author: Maggie Stiefvater

Genre: YA, Fantasy

Publisher: Scholastic Press

Release Date: April 26th, 2018

Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

!!! Spoiler warning for the entirity of The Raven Cycle !!!

Immediately when I started this book I knew it was going to be better than the third book because I was invested in it from the first scene. I didn’t feel like it still needed it’s footing, it was exciting and I had a great time reading every single page in this book.

With this book you can definitely feel the end approaching and I liked that. I’m sorry, here is a super unpopular opinion of mine: I hate the last book in series. That’s right, I said it. I hate reading finales. In fantasy, every single finale kind of is the same, and it always has a lot of anticipation behind it, but it always kind of falls flat for me. Recently, every single finale that I’ve read didn’t live up to the second book or it was underwhelming. This is so not the case with this book. The finale was amazing, I was never underwhelmed, I was always on the tip of my toes reading it and I basically had a blast. Everyone knows that the most important things happen in the last 150 pages of a Fantasy book, but important things just never stopped happening in this book.

Plus, I really need to hand it to Maggie Stiefvater, she is kind of the Queen of Plot Twists. Every book, has like multiple plot twists that you never see coming. I don’t know how she does it, but with every plot twist thrown in there, it only got better and better. It made me overlook the fact that Laumoniers chapters were weird and annoying but I understood their importance and they weren’t as frequent as the Greenmantle chapters in book 3.

The ships in this book were everything. I lived for them. I loved when Gansey and Blue were at Henry’s party, and how they could be open about being a couple, and seeing them that happy made me also really happy for them. Plus Adam and Ronan???? I love them together??? They were so unexpected but I knew of Ronan’s feelings for Adam, and Adam knew them too and in his thoughts he was always flattered how Ronan picked Adam and not Gansey and I was scared that Adam might take advantage of that or something, but then when Ronan kissed Adam I was really scared that they would crash and burn, but Adam kissed back and enjoyed the hell out of it, and I was just so happy. I love them together so much.

This book also has a very sad tone to it. In the prologue, you find out that Gansey knew all along that he was going to die because he knew what it meant when you heard your voice on that day (I forgot the English name for it), and it’s like my mind was blown. Of course Gansey knew that he was going to die, he’s such a smart cookie, I don’t know how that ever escaped my mind. But you get more and more chapters from his perspective and he kept being so scared of death, totally understandable, but he knew he had to do it for the greater good.

Then, here’s the part that really wrecked me, Noah. I love Noah so much, but what was happening to him wrecked me so much. Noah kept reliving his death and it was so hard for him to fully pass on, again understandable, and he was just really struggling with it. When Noah saw Gansey die a second time he knew he had to do something, and for his friends he passed on. I cried so much. I’m crying right now. I think out of them, Noah was my favorite and he just had so little. He just wanted to help his friend while he was still alive and then he gets betrayed and murdered, and he’s kind of reliving everything because Gansey is just as insane about Glendower as his first friend is and he was so young when he died, it was so hard to read when Noah really passed on. When I explained everything to my friend, because I just had to talk about it, I cried again and now every time when I think about Noah I get sad. I can’t believe I’m crying right now again, that’s how much it wrecked me.

The fact that Glendower was dead  the entire time was a bit anticlimactic to find out, but it made sense. Then later you see Noah travel back in time to whisper to Gansey that he has to find Glendower and that was such a heart breaking scene, and I can’t stop crying.

The ending was pretty insane. The whole thing with the demon and Neeve and Piper. It was so well done. It was such a good conclusion to the story. The epilogue was great too, I loved seeing everybody so happy, even if Noah wasn’t alive. Goddammit, here come the waterworks again. This is without a doubt one of my favorite fantasy finales of all time. I can’t express into words how good it was. I laughed, I obviously cried, and I had a great time. I spanned out my time in The Raven Cycle over about a year, and I can’t believe I don’t have any books left now. I don’t know how to deal with that. If you made it this far, thanks for reading my review and being with me through all the tears, let me know what you thought of this book and if you’re also still not over Noah because I honestly think I never will be. 🤗🤗