Book Rant: Heir of Fire

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RATING: 5

GENRE: YA, fantasy

SERIES: Throne of Glass, #3

Heir of Fire by Sarah J Maas. This book just hit the ground running. I really enjoyed the first two books with the competition and seeing Celaena be an assassin and watching the love-triangle play out, but this book blows it all away. There’s less drama, much more magic and general kick-ass moments and, I found, better character development. What can I say for a non-spoilery section? Not much! Celaena has been sent to Wendlyn to assassinate the Royal family there, which she has absolutely no intention of doing. But in Wendlyn lies answers she needs to help overthrown the tyrant King, the very man she pretends to be a loyal servant for. Behind Celaena leaves her friends, Prince Dorian, and Chaol, Captain of the King’s guard, who are also walking the thin line of treason trying to protect their loved ones from the brutality of the King. I highly reccomend starting this series if you haven’t, last I checked there were supposed to be 6 books total so this is the perfect time to jump on this train. Each one is getting better and better. I love Sarah J Maas’ writing style, I find it similar to Laini Taylor’s in that she’s very good a weaving threads you don’t think are important at the time then we zoom out and it’s this beautiful masterpiece. That is all for the non-spoilery people! Bye if you haven’t read the book!

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Okay….where should I start?

We have this new character Rowan. He’s this immortal fey Prince, badass warrior and at first I don’t want to say I hated him becasue that’s too strong. I wanted him to be a friend for Celaena, not like Dorian or Choal, but a real friend who really got her and accepted her and would support her. Neither Dorian or Chaol ever did that, they always had another agenda. And I was so frustrated with him in the beginning becasue he wasn’t doing that I knew that was how they needed to end up. He didn’t even seem to care about her as his student, it really seemed that he had been conditioned to think that becasue she was a demi-fey her life didn’t mean much, ever as a Queen. The peak of this is when Celaena finally yells at him “You left me.” becasue it’s so true, she’s grasping at straws trying to pull herself up enough to fulfill her vow to Nehemia and Rowan will randomly give her a hand up then drop her again. When Emrys finally spoke up on her behalf it was the beginning of a change and it was so good to finally get there. I couldn’t believe what he did though with Luca. What. Yes, it does make her act to save him but it’s the cruelest teaching technique. It wasn’t until her burnout that I finally started liking Rowan. He didn’t know of her past and that made some of what he’d done less cruel. When he finally pens up about his back story we see that he is just as broken as Celaena and they try to put each other back together. I liked how protective he was over her, not like a lover like Chaol, but like a true friend.

I was so proud of Celaena during that fight for the fortress! She’s so selfless, she really doesn’t give herself enough credit. She is a warrior Queen who will sacrifice everything for her people. THAT is a Queen, not sitting in a throne like Maeve watching her people suffer for her. The character growth she goes through is just fantastic. The coming to terms with her life and what had happened to her and accepting her actions and inactions instead of constantly dwelling on them and the end of the book with the tattoo was beautiful. Speaking of, the Valg Princes. Agramon, the greater demon for fear from Cassandra Clare’s shadowhunter world (City of Ashes?) came to mind along with the dementors from Harry Potter. They feed off your fear and pain and go through your most horrible memories until you finally die.

Chaol…sigh…

 

How I felt THE ENTIRE book. Do I need to elaborate more? Was anyone NOT feeling like this towards him? I still like him, but so frustrated.

Let’s move to Dorian and What’s-her-face-healer-chick. Dorian is like a 13 year old flipping girl who can’t not be in a relationship for 5 minutes. This was supremely unnecessary in my opinion. They only significant thing about her character, besides being Dorian’s latest love interest, was that she was another spy. Her role could have been absorbed by Ren, or Chaol, or Aedion. She was just there to generate unnecessary angst with her death. But I didn’t know enough about her to care at all about her death. Dorian revealed his powers saving Chaol, not her anyway. This is the only time I can recall being really annoyed at Sarah J Maas, for introducing and making a huge deal out of this character only to kill her. You could argue that she facilitated the development of Dorian’s character but all his not-considerable development in this book could have been through someone else already in play instead of adding this bimbo so he can fall in love…again. I’m actually glad she’s now dead she I don’t have to deal with Dorian falling out of love with her a week later. Apart from that bullshit relationship, Dorian and Chaol’s interaction I did find very interested. I was so pissed at Dorian for telling Chaol that he couldn’t accept Celaena for what she is (although true) becasue in the last book Dorian wasn’t accepting her either until he realized he is magic. That’s not friendship, you “accept” who she is now that you NEED her. F*** off! Neither of them deserve a second thought from Celaena. But I can’t even be mad at either of them for lack of communication becasue they are both doing it to protect the other. They’re both in the mindset of willing to give up, basically destroy, their friendship to save the other. Chaol a little more than Dorian, Dorian also wants to kill his father and Chaol isn’t there yet. It just shows their true loyalty to one another. When Dorian exposes his power to save Chaol is the epitome of that, even though they are no longer friends in the superficial sense, they are deeper friends then ever.  When Chaol told Dorian that he loved him AH! One of the best parts f the book. Sounds like now Dorian in under the control of the King with one of those collar things, so that’s mildly terrifying. Just as he finally grew a pair too. (I wasn’t all too happy with either of them in this book, if you missed it.)

Aedion! How much do I love this character? So much! At beginning I  hated him becasue thought he truly had turned completely against his people. I though he was the King’s Whore just as he wanted everyone too.  When Chaol points out the ring, I just felt horrible for him becasue he wasn’t himself at all. But then we find out he’s actually a genius and has been playing everyone for so long and actually trying to help. I love how loyal he is to Celaena (Aelin). When he was talking about all his titles and the ones he cherished most were safely locked away I absolutely love it: “Cousin-that had been his most beloved title. Cousin, kin, protector.” I really hope there is a reunion between those two in the next book. Obviously he has to be freed from whatever jail he got thrown into. I’m glad Chaol finally picked a side but he did a really inconvenient time to do so. Aedion had completely forfeit himself so Chaol couls stay in the King’s favour and then Chaol totally burned that bridge. I like that he picked a side becasue I could take another book of his character acting like he was in this one, but timing man, timing.

The witches side plot I really, really enjoyed! Manon is not in anyway a likable character but I still found myself rooting for her. Abraxos was her redeeming point, when she actually cared about something. Then when she saves Petrah and after she kills the Cochran when she’s thinking about the fact that the witches are made into monsters, they aren’t born heartless. I think she can be a really strong character and I can’t wait for the story lines in intersect. I think this plan is going to backfire on the king, a lot.  The witches don’t seem the type to submit to anyone’s rule and now they have the wyverns so unless there is something else in it for them I don’t think  that alliance will last horribly long, especially if/when magic comes back. I really want Manon to team uo with Celaena, even though she killed Baba Yellowlegs. Given the relationship between The Thirteen and Iskra I think they might be able to come to a (probably temporary) agreement to overthrown the King. I really hope so. Also we never addressed the fact that all the meat and people smelt off. That was pretty key, but we got no explanation.

Maeve at the end, AH! I WILL STAB. You don’t hurt Rowan! I think that ring is far more important then we have been told. Maeve isn’t the type to do something like release one of her warriors over something simply sentimental. Hopefully it isn’t a Wyrdkeys, I don’t think it is but maybe something else magical? Rowan and Celaena can’t split up, they are so fun to read together. I’m not sure how is going to work becasue magic is gone. The next book has explaining to do. It’s a whole year away! I don’t think I can do this. So many questions unanswered!

That is all for this book, bye guys!

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Book Rant: The Ring and The Crown

18296016RATING: 3

GENRE: Historical-fantasy, YA

SERIES: Stand-alone

Hi all! This book, The Ring and The Crown by Melissa De La Cruz, is a historical-fantasy taking place in the early 1900 where the English and the French have joined together to form an empire that controls all the world’s most powerful magicians and most of the world itself. Aelwyn is a bastard magician and her only duty in life will be to serve the crown, having been sent away four years ago to study and learn to control her magic she has returned to London and is reunited with her childhood friend, Princess Marie-Victoria. The Princess has never had the ambitions of her mother, Queen Eleanor II, or Aelwyn and she wants nothing more than a simple life with the man she has given her heart away to. A man she cannot have. Insteed she has a political marriage lined up for her, and the man she is to marry was engaged and his ex-fiancé isn’t ready to have him taken from her without a fight. Ronan is a beautiful American who is using her beauty to fight her way up the social ranks and she isn’t going to be left behind in the wedding games! All 4 girls meet in London for the coming out season, each willing to do anything for their perfect match. I enjoyed this book, it wasn’t anything spectacular though.  While much more interesting than most books about the court, there were still a lot of very dry bits. Spoilers past here!

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This novel had to have had one of the least satisfying endings I have ever read. Isabelle really gets the worst of it. She finally finds love and then get kidnapped, Louis is killed, she’s pregnant with her evil (and dead) lover’s bastard child and then gets to be raped by her guardian figure, Hugh, (which is “very much like coming home” because that was her childhood! Yay! Ain’t the sweet. No. It was really depressing, why did that line have to be there?! It made it sound like this was somehow positive!) There’s a hint at the end that she MIGHT have ran away and is now living by herself with her child. Oh good. So they get to be dirt poor and likely starve.  Then we have Ronan and Wolf situation (more on that later) finally they are all set to go, they both love each other, this is going to work! Oh wait. No it’s not. We get rid of the evil character and break up our favourite couple in the process. Wolf and Marie-Victoria (henceforth PMV) are friends so it’s not horrible, but I was so disappointed, I really wanted Wolf and Ronan together. Oh then Ronan also starts her own business so that was fine. Her story line ended ok.

Wolf and Ronan the start of their relationship really made me frustrated. Almost all of it made me frustrated actually but mostly the first bit when he proposes. It’s like this “test” if she loves him or just money because she doesn’t know he’s rich. That is SUCH an unfair test for many reasons

  • He knows the role of woman at the time, marry wealthy and support your family. She’s told him how she’s going to sell herself because her family is practically broke. She doesn’t know he has money so she’s not going to sacrifice her family for a guy she doesn’t know.
  • That brings me to part two, she doesn’t even know his real name! She doesn’t know a damned thing about him.
  • She could have though he was marrying her for her money; it looks like she has a lot so it’s not an unreasonable assumption.

Personally when he brought it up I would have gone with the last one as my main argument, supporting it with the second and first then sprinkles of what she did which virtue and that crap. After that initially messiness was out of the way I really liked their relationship, it frustrated me as I said, but it was a good frustration. They had good push and pull and I just wanted them to be together already! Then they’re together for like a day then it all goes to hell.

I can’t believe PMV wasn’t angrier when Aelwyn told her the Merlin guy was poisoning her! The test thing, fine. I understand the need for a strong ruler who will make personal sacrifices for the greater good of the people and wanting to make sure. I don’t support the method but the ends justify the means in this case (I think). But I saw no feasible reason for poisoning her to make her sick. Why? What are you trying to prove?  I would have been way more upset and dwelt on that fact way longer than she did! Aelwyn told her and PMV and the Queen were just kind of “oh ok. That’s normal.” That’s high treason HE WAS DELIBERATLY FEEDING THE PRINCESS POISION AND CALLING IT MEDICINE! And it’s not like he just started, he’s been doing this for the majority of her life. Years. After the rest of her body was all fixed he just was like “oh I need to do something, she’s too healthy!” and after this he doesn’t see to be upset or anything, there was no revealing of plans it’s like he was just doing it for shits and giggles.

I really loved PMV and Gill scenes. They were so cute together but I knew she was going to give him up which I wasn’t too angry about because it had to happen. But seeing them together even for a bit made me happy.  It was so satisfying when Leopold was killed by Louis in a duel! We knew something was up with him! At first it was just “ok PMV is in love with someone else, obviously he’s a good actor playing him part etc.” Then as it went on it just got weird because clearly he isn’t a very good person why does everyone love him so much? Does he just hide it that well? Ah he’s magic. Makes sense now! I had almost forgotten about Pandora’s box when it came back into play. I love when book make nice little circles like that. So elegant.

That is all for now! Kisses! Bye guys!

Book Rant: The Scorpio Races

Scorpio-paperback-websiteRATING: 4.75/5

GENRE: Fantasy, YA

SERIES: Stand Alone

Hello! Welcome to Book Rant! Today we are discussing The Scorpio Races by Maggie Stiefvater. This is the first book I have read by Maggie Stiefvater though I know she has another series, The Shiver Trilogy, that I have heard mixed review about. Anyway, The Scorpio Races take place on this made-up island in our world and I’m guessing it’s early 1900, it’s hard to tell becasue we are on this isolated island but there is a mention of the woman’s suffrage movement going on. Once  a year, wild, carnivorous horses rise from the sea  onto the banks of the island. And every year on the first of November, the locals capture and race them along the beach in a bloody show of courage and strength and every year people die. Sean, 19,  is the returning champion and he lives for this time of year. Puck was forced to enter the race by a cruel move of fate. Her and her brothers were orphaned when the water horses killed their parents and now they can barely make ends meet. Not only is she the only girl to ever enter the race, she has never been near a water horse before and cannot forget her parents death, but failure isn’t an option. I really, really enjoyed this book and I recommend it! Spoilers part here!

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I loved how this book builds. In the Prologue we learn what the races are and are sort of introduced to these horses, we learn that they are vicious and eat people and that Sean has some kind of a way with them. The we see them trying to capture the capall uisce  and meet the piebald and learn how Puck’s parents died, but it isn’t really until the storm when the horses come on land that we really see how dangerous these hoses are. When Tommy dies it also helps put things into perspective becasue he the first character we really know who is killed by one of these things. I loved Pucks story and how the stakes kept slowly raising  for her. At the parade when all the men are tormenting her for being a woman I kept expecting her to explain that she has no choice but she’s so strong and proud she knows she couldn’t do that or else everyone would use that weakness against her. When Tommy and those guys came after her and Dove I was so furious! She’s just a kid. By the end the stakes have raised for Sean too, it’s no longer just a race and only one of them can win. It was so stressful reading that becasue no matter what, even best case scenario, someone was going to lose everything. When Finn pulled the money out at the end I was just over the moon! I hadn’t seen it coming at all. And then she buys Corr and he chooses Sean over the ocean and ah! Loved, loved, loved the ending.

Mutt, this guy. His insanity also just keeps building throughout the book. He’s a really sad character, his father openly prefers Sean over him and trusts him more but Mutt makes it so difficult to feel bad for him! He doesn’t care about these horses, he killed a colt to try and get Sean fired then he sliced the legs of a capall uisce mere thinking it was Corr so Sean would lose! When he died, I don’t want to say it was happy, but it was “well you had it coming, idiot.” He’s riding  a man-eating magic horse he can’t control. Darwinism.

I loved the romance and the love story between Sean and Puck. I love how subtle it was. It didn’t take over from the main plot and it also grew slowly and naturally. I really liked how they started training together. Then the kiss FINALLY right near the end, so perfect.

Gabe, on the one hand I understand him. One the other he’s pretty well leaving his brother and sister on the street to starve. What if Puck had been killed? Would he still have left? Their argument at the beginning when he first tells them he’s leaving hints that yes, he would. I forget how old they said Finn was, 12? I understand having to do what good for yourself, but essentially condemning your siblings to death when the house forecloses and have no where to live. As it was, with three incomes and not paying rent, they were eating the bare minimum, cheapest food. That’s too selfish to leave, regardless how good a reason he has.

That’s it for today! Bye lovelies.

Book Rant: Ruby Red

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Is this cover not the most gorgeous thing!?

RATING: 90%

GENRE: YA, Historical fantasy/fantasy

SERIES: Ruby Red Trilogy, #1

Hello! Today we are going to talk about the wonderful Ruby Red by Kerstin Gier. This book is fantastic! It was over too quickly and I need more! It’s about this 16 year old girl Gwyneth who lives in London and in her family there is a time traveling gene but only 12 people have this gene between her family and this other family. Now the gene doesn’t appear until between your 16 and 17 year and at some point in that time you will just start randomly traveling through time. It has been predicted that Gwyneth’s cousin, Charlotte, has the 12th and final gene and she has been preparing her whole life for this: Learning how to fight and speak multiple languages and how to act properly and dress right in all these different time periods. But Gwyneth ends up being the one with the gene and she has no clue what to do. She’s thrown into this strange new world she has only heard about before in whispers and stuck with the infuriating, though very handsome, time-traveler Gideon de Villiers. This book is so amazing. It has mystery and romance and it is just so good! Spoilers past here, read it the come back to join us!

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OHMYGOD LUCY AND PAUL ARE GWEN’S PARENTS!?! So Gideon and her are related?! What? I can’t! Well I guess they aren’t closely related. Are they? These time lines are so confusing! I think they are distant cousins or something. It’s still kind of weird but not super creepy and sick. (Makes me think of Lady Audley’s Secret and all the cousins together. That made me uncomfortable. Apparently that was something people did often during that time.) It took me a second to figure out that it was Paul and Lucy at the beginning in the prologue. I just assumed that it was Gwen and Gideon and I was so excited to go on the Titanic but halfway through it clicked. I mean through her mom’s story made sense but it didn’t fully fit together so I was wondering if she was really her mom but then I was thinking abut how hard that would have been to fake. She must have actually been pregnant and lost the child or something. In this whole ordeal I think I’m kind of leaning towards Paul and Lucy’s side. The Count is messed up and I do not trust him at all. I think there might be some sort of Graceling style mind control at work.

Ok Gideon can clearly read minds! He’s descended from the Count, he obviously inherited some sort of that skill. I loved the part when Gwen was meeting the Count and she just kept singing the national anthem but then he’s starts to strangle her and that was so creepy. Are you guying thinking it’s like a mental thing where he makes you think he’s strangling you but isn’t actually or is it more telekinesis where he’s actually cutting off her airway. Honestly the mind thing would be more terrifying. You’d have though before she went back in time though someone would have told her the rules. How hard would the be? Just throw it in there, “by the way…” but apparently that didn’t happen.

I think maybe the chronograph is to make the Count immortal. But then wouldn’t he be immortal already assuming they succeed? Or maybe there are two lines of time, one it they do, one if they don’t. Paradoxes! So confusing. But it is alluded to that the Count is immortal. How are you guys picturing the chronograph? I’m picturing this giant bronze metal Spartan shield thing that lies on the ground with 12 spaces like a clock each with a gem stone. But then they talk about stealing it an moving it all the time and it’s a little difficult to steal a 1 meter in diameter bronze shield. Not the stealthiest of thing, someone would probably notice. Maybe it’s a pocket watch sized thing?

I adore the London setting in this book! Some YA books say they are set in London but then it doesn’t feel like you are actually in London because everyone talks like they are American and the setting gives the impression that  the author never lived there for any amount of time. You guy know what i mean? Either Kerstin Gier really researched and knew her stuff or she has lived in London because it was so well written and the description was amazing. (I have ever lived in London so maybe I’m totally wrong but it seemed really well done.)  I loved the British slang thrown in there.

It was so frustrating when she didn’t tell her mom about the time traveling either! It took her so long! She could have been killed! There is this prophecy about the Ruby and she has the power of the raven, obviously that’s partly Gwen seeing ghosts but I have the feeling there is more to it. I don’t understand Gwen’s character being so secretive about this!  They are a bunch of people who travel through time! You’d think seeing dead people wouldn’t be too far a stretch. I adore James. I’m really excited about her getting lesson from James in the next book. I think that will just be so funny. And I want to know how the her seeing her self back in time while she hides in the curtains happened. I want to see it from the other Gwen’s perspective! But back to the point, why doesn’t she tell other time traveling people? And why do they just always assume she’s talking to herself? You guys can travel through time and read minds! Why can you not fathom that she see’s ghosts? At least Mr. George has to guess it because she asked about Robert. Put 2 and 2 together. Her conversation with Gordon was priceless though!

“You were talking to that niche in the wall again, Gwyneth. I saw you.”
“Yes, but it’s my favorite bit of wall, Gordon. I’d hurt its feelings if I didn’t stop and talk to it.” 

Gwen is just so funny! Like when she was trying to remember the password and she forgot it in 5 seconds.And I was trying to remember it too but obviously I couldn’t. I love Lesley. I love her character she is so much like me and my friends at home Googling everything. I would like more development of Charlotte actually. I feel like there is a lot there and right now she’s just coming off as a stuck up, spoiled brat. It was just too short! We just started rolling and then it just stops!  I need more!

That’s all I have time for! Bye darlings!

 

30 Day Book Challenge: Day 21

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Good morning my darlings! Time for more of the 30 Day book Challenge started by The Chronicles of Radiya 

Today’s question: What is you favourite book from your childhood?

000583I already did Harry Potter so I’m going to go with The Lord of the Rings by JRR Tolkien. I read this book during the  summer before grade 5 (actually I read it twice that summer, my brothers still tease me about that.) My Papa loves these books and my older brother had read them earlier that year so I didn’t want to be left behind! This series really made me fall in love with the fantasy genre. The writing is amazing and  I loved the stories. And all the characters are just so perfect and well rounded and they’re amusing and their relationships with each other are very well developed. I actually had crushes on Legolas and Aragorn for a long time (I still do ;)) and they move in the same circle so it’s hard to juggle them sometimes.

I also adore the movies even though I wasn’t allowed to watch them for a long time. Allowed be the key word, I did watch them when my parents weren’t home. MWHAHAHAHA! The Hobbit I read the next year and I loved that one just as much. And The Hobbit  movie is amazing but three parts? Really? I can read the book is less time then it will take to watch all three movies! Peasants, all of them.

Ok that is all for today! Bye guys! Kisses!