This month seems to have been really busy. I went on my
first trip abroad with friends which was great. We went to Amsterdam, which is
a really beautiful and interesting city. I also ordered my first Fairyloot box
– the October ‘Love at First Bite’ box. More on that to come in my unboxing
This month I read The Beautiful by Reneé Ahdieh (an eARC received through NetGalley) and Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo. Both are authors I have read and enjoyed before. I loved both books and gave them solid 4 stars, although I’d say Six of Crows is stronger in terms of the writing quality. The Beautiful is an alluring and mysterious historical novel set in 1800s New Orleans with vampires! Meanwhile Six of Crows is a heist novel set in Bardugo’s Grishaverse. I’m super excited to see her characters brought to life on TV (Netflix are adapting her books!). I’ve also started reading Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell which I’m about halfway through so far.
I bought four books this month, all from Sarah J Maas’s
Throne of Glass series. I read the first two on Kindle but I loved them so much
I really wanted to read the rest as physical copies. When I love a book, I like
to be able to see it on my shelf!
I’ve continued working on my current WIP which is a YA
fantasy. I’m now about halfway through the book and enjoying immersing myself
in this new world. As it’s a first draft I’m trying not to dwell too much on
getting in perfect and just get some words down on paper. I can always go back
and edit it later.
This month has been pretty busy but I still managed to get
some reading and writing done so I can be pretty happy with that.
Publishing Info: June 2016 by Orion Children’s Books (first published 2015)
Star Rating: 4/5
Back Cover Summary:
Ketterdam: a bustling hub of international trade where anything can be had for
the right price–and no one knows that better than criminal prodigy Kaz Brekker.
Kaz is offered a chance at a deadly heist that could make him rich beyond his
wildest dreams. But he can’t pull it off alone…
A convict with a thirst for revenge.
A sharpshooter who can’t walk away from a wager.
A runaway with a privileged past.
A spy known as the Wraith.
A Heartrender using her magic to survive the slums.
A thief with a gift for unlikely escapes.
Six dangerous outcasts. One impossible heist. Kaz’s crew is the only thing that
might stand between the world and destruction—if they don’t kill each other
started reading this book, I wasn’t into it at all. It took me quite a few
chapters to start enjoying it. Maybe I just wasn’t in the mood at the start,
and perhaps I had ridiculously high expectations because of the insane amount
of hype around Six of Crows. Also I
loved Leigh Bardugo’s Shadow and Bone
from the first chapter, which kind of added to the pressure on this book to be
brilliant. Despite my reservations at the start, it is a brilliant book.
the central characters are well developed with back stories that are slowly
revealed over the course of the book. I got more into it as I gained more
understanding of each character’s backgrounds and motivations. The characters
are also neither ‘good’ nor ‘evil’ and I liked that they have different views
on the world (for example attitudes towards the Grisha) depending on their
backgrounds. The interactions and relationships between the characters is one
of the strongest parts of the book. They drive the narrative and make it the
great book it is.
Genre: Young Adult, Paranormal, Historical Fiction
Publishing Info: October 2019 by Hodder & Stoughton
Star Rating: 4/5
Back Cover Summary:
In 1872, New Orleans is a city ruled by the dead. But to seventeen-year-old Celine Rousseau, New Orleans provides her a refuge after she’s forced to flee her life as a dressmaker in Paris. Taken in by the sisters of the Ursuline convent along with six other girls, Celine quickly becomes enamored with the vibrant city from the music to the food to the soirées and—especially—to the danger. She soon becomes embroiled in the city’s glitzy underworld, known as Le Cour des Lions, after catching the eye of the group’s leader, the enigmatic Sèbastien Saint Germain. When the body of one of the girls from the convent is found in the lair of Le Cour des Lions, Celine battles her attraction to him and suspicions about Sèbastien’s guilt along with the shame of her own horrible secret.
When more bodies are discovered, each crime more gruesome than the last, Celine and New Orleans become gripped by the terror of a serial killer on the loose—one Celine is sure has set her in his sights . . . and who may even be the young man who has stolen her heart. As the murders continue to go unsolved, Celine takes matters into her own hands and soon uncovers something even more shocking: an age-old feud from the darkest creatures of the underworld reveals a truth about Celine she always suspected simmered just beneath the surface.
you so much to Hodder & Stoughton and NetGalley for the eARC of this book.
tad late with this review. I did start reading it before it was released, but
didn’t end up having much time to read on my holiday to Amsterdam. But better
late than never!
premise for this book instantly got my attention. Vampires. Murder mystery. In
New Orleans. In the 1800s. Count me in. I’m quite hard to please when it
comes to vampire novels. I think because I have been disappointed by so many.
The historical New Orleans setting was certainly a great attraction, as it made
a change from all the modern day vampire novels. In fact, it didn’t feel
necessarily like a vampire novel, which is a good thing, as it felt like its
own rather than trying too hard to fit a mould.
There is a mysterious, sumptuous atmosphere in much
of the book, which Reneé Ahdieh does an excellent job at capturing. Alluring is
a good word to describe this book. I also can’t help but love a good murder
mystery! However I did feel by the end still quite in the dark about all the
mysterious people, and whether they are all vampires or something else. That
air of mystery is very effective for most of the book, but it would have been
more satisfying to get more answers and a clearer picture of this shadowy
paranormal world by the end.
I haven’t been abroad much, so this trip was very exciting!
I’d been to places when I was younger and to Canada a couple of times as I have
relatives there, but I’d not been on holiday abroad since Austria in 2014. It
was also my first time going on holiday with friends rather than family which
was exciting. I went with two friends from uni and we stayed in a lovely Airbnb
in Weesp, which is just on the edge of Amsterdam, for three nights from 5th
– 8th October.
The journey there went smoothly, except I felt very travel
sick on the plane. But, thankfully, everything was running on time. When we
arrived at the Airbnb in the afternoon we decided to explore Weesp. It’s a
lovely little town with a river, shops, cafes and restaurants. There was also a
church with an unusual bell ring that sounded very pretty.
On our first full day in the Netherlands we headed into
Amsterdam. It was only a 15 minute train journey into the centre of the city.
Unfortunately it rained all day, so we decided to explore some museums. First
up was the Amsterdam Museum, which although wasn’t at the top of my to do list
was actually really interesting and gave a good overview and insight into the
history of Amsterdam. So that was actually a pretty good place to start. At
lunch I satisfied my sweet tooth with a pancake from a nice café which was