Welcome to another round of mini reviews. As you might already know, I plan to do these more often as they’re more popular and well, they’re easier for me too. (But of course, there’ll still be plenty full length reviews! Just more mini ones more often, heh.) I have dubbed this edition “The One With a Lot of Sarahs” simply because 3 out of the 6 books I’m reviewing today are by authors with the name ‘Sarah’. I KNOW. What a weird, but totally awesome coincidence. Tip of the day: you should name your newborn Sarah – almost can 100% guarantee she’ll grow up to be a kickass author.
Thank you to Bloomsbury Australia, Pan Macmillan Australia, Simon & Schuster Australia and Scholastic Australia for sending me these copies for review!
If you are looking for a good NA fantasy with lots of sexy romance, this might just be up your alley. However, for me it turned out that this one is not much different to how I feel about Throne of Glass or Heir of Fire.
Out of all the characters, Feyre bothered me the most. I just – nope – couldn’t click with her at all. She’s a huntress and a painter on the side, always doing things to keep her family in order and functioning (especially with her father being crippled). I love that Maas made Feyre a well-rounded character. Unfortunately, Feyre and I couldn’t get along. In particular, I didn’t understand her mind process. She’s desperate to escape one minute, the next she’s all about Tamlin and how hot he is. MAKE UP YOUR MIND, WOMAN. (Also, Stockholm Syndrome alert!) Speaking of Tamlin, yes he’s smoking hot and swoony (as pretty much EVERYONE has already mentioned) but for me personally, I wasn’t really sold on him. I liked him, but I didn’t feel any emotional connection because he just seemed like a real creep with a mask half the time.
BUT CAN WE TALK ABOUT RHYS AND LUCIEN. Rhysland is the most complex and fascinating character in this book. He’s a bit of a villain at the start but soon we get to learn more about him and I just started loving him more as the story progressed – particularly more than Tamlin or Feyre. As for Lucien, he is just the best. And his sarcasm? I love it.
Another issue I had with this book was how pretty much the first 60-70% of this book was just romantic build-up and world building (the latter was especially excellent). The book wasn’t moving anywhere, in my opinion. But, in the last 30%, things did pick up significantly, because BOOM suddenly there’s a villain and it’s just crazy action-packed. However, if you’re into that whole smokey romance dominated fantasy… there’s no doubt that you’ll love this, because A Court of Thorns and Roses will most certainly make you SWOON.
(Okay whoops, this turned out to be longer than I expected…)
Awwwww look at that one star and how lonely it looks…
WELL GUESS WHAT. THAT’S ALL YOU’RE GONNA GET.
I don’t ask for much in order for me to like a book. Mostly, I just want a likeable main character. Stick (aka Kieran) was not an enjoyable character. AT ALL. Aside from the bout of swearing that remains plentiful and consistent throughout the novel, his foul and unappreciative attitude towards the people around him seriously made me want to screech. I mean, how disrespectful and foul can you get? Sure, you just lost your best friend, but if you’re going to act like a total dickhead the entire time throughout the book, expect no sympathy from me.
Furthermore, I really hate how the love interest was utilised in this book. It basically suggested that a love interest can replace your best friend and help you get through the grief. I mean, seriously? What on earth is this book trying to promote here? Also, I did a little bit of research – this book was set in England 2011 when the riots took place (the fires, and all that not so great history). I found that to be really interesting, but it was such a shame for the setting to be underused.
In all, this one had no saving grace to redeem itself. The setting would have been perfect but the book’s efforts were lost in the characters and romance that did nothing for me apart from make me very angry.
The Sin Eater’s Daughter came with a lot of promise but in the end, turned out to be a waste of my time.
Twylla, the book’s heroine literally does nothing in this book. She sits there in that sad little corner of her’s and she sulks and complains about her life. I mean, YOU WERE MEANT TO BE THIS BADASS CHICK WITH HELLA SCARY POWERS. What the hell happened to that? I am disappoint. Furthermore, the instant-love in this one is horrid, guys. I cannot with it. They see each other and the next minute, they’re in luuuurve. *eye roll*
There’s barely any plot to this story at all, too. I mean, the main idea is that this girl who can kill people with her touch is to marry the Prince but then there’s this hella nice guard that Twylla basically falls in love with at first sight. What happens after that? Hmm let’s see… oh wait that’s right. NUTHING.
With all the bad luck I was having with Sarah Alderson’s books, I started to think that I wouldn’t like any of her works. But look at this, a Sarah Alderson book that I rather enjoyed! Conspiracy Girl is a quick thriller – I’ve been a reading slump as of the late and this really got me back on my feet with how easy it was to fly through, whilst being entirely interesting at the same time. I really loved Nic as a character. She’s a strong young woman who only trusts herself and I loved her strong sense of independence.
In addition, I loved Finn and Nic’s relationship. You can see that their history with each other runs deep and raw and I love how Alderson tackled that. I definitely grew to like Finn as the story went through and YAY for a romance that takes the backseat and lets the plot run the show like it should!
This one definitely goes highly recommended to anyone who wants something easy to read but thrilling (and romantic) all the same.
Even though this one took me FOREVER to chew through, I got there in the end and it was so worth my efforts and time. And you know what the best thing about it? How quotable and gorgeous the writing was. Tommy Wallach, TELL ME YOUR SECRETS.
The best books, they don’t talk about things you never thought about before. They talk about things you’d always thought about, but that you didn’t think anyone else had thought about. You read them, and suddenly you’re a little bit less alone in the world. You’re part of this cosmic community of people who’ve thought about this thing, whatever it happens to be.
I’m calling this one a contemporary even though it’s equal parts science fiction simply because of how realistic and applicable this is to nowaday life and I can totally envision this happening to this world at any moment in time. This book really makes you stop to think and reflect, and that’s yet another reason why I adore it so much. Also, there will be tears. Well, maybe not real ones but certainly internal ones…. does that make sense? Basically, THIS ONE WILL GIVE YOU A LOT OF EMOTIONS THAT YOU MAY NOT NECESSARILY WANT BUT HAVE TO ENDURE ANYWAY.
Also, just a warning here, the ending is left incredibly open. I personally felt that it worked very nicely here, but hey, everyone is gonna feel differently about it. But yes, I definitely recommend this to anyone who wants to give contemporary YA a go, but still wants some sci-fi elements in it.
Clearly, this book has a required taste. I have a bunch of my Goodreads friends downright gushing over this book and on the other side of the spectrum, there are others who absolutely hated it. I ended up agreeing with the latter. This book and I were obviously not meant to be.
Now, I know I’m going to suck at this but I shall attempt to explain why I didn’t end up liking this book as best as possible. This book is what I call a “passive” book. For me, books are meant to leap out at you, catch you by surprise, and tell their story loud and clear right into your ear. I’ll Be There, on the other hand, was not that. It felt shy and quiet, like it was barely whispering into my ear. It just didn’t grab my attention, and I felt this huge distance between myself and the characters in this book – and there was no way to establish any connections.
Also, I was bored. I was patient at first, because I was told that this book was good, but soon I just started giving up and skimmed a lot. I’m not proud of it but maaaaan, Emily and Sam are as boring as my maths textbook. Honestly, I cannot recommend this, but if you are interested in this one, don’t let my mini review stop you. There are so many people out there who love this one just as much.
And that’s all for now! Have you read any of these books? Do you agree with my thoughts or do you have a different view?
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