Hello and welcome to another reading roundup.  Since my last roundup I have read two pretty good books which I’d like to share with you. [book-info]I received an Advance Reader Copy of The Poisoned Blade by Kate Elliott at BEA.  It’s been on my TBR for a while, but it’s only recently I read it.  The Poisoned Blade is the second book in a planned trilogy (I believe) and continues the story of Jessamy, a young woman caught between two cult...

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The Blood Mirror by Brent Weeks is the fourth in a planned series of five epic fantasy books.  The series has a wonderfully imaginative magic system in which magic users can turn light into a physical substance. luxin.  Each spectrum of light (red, orange, yellow, green, blue, indigo, violet) produces luxin with different properties and uses.  If you’ve not yet started this series, I heartily recommend it.  Go start with The Black Prism.  ...

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Empire of Storms is the fifth and penultimate book in Sarah J. Maas’s Throne of Glass in which a former assassin uses her skills and her magic to save her kingdom.  Being the second to last book in the series, it focusses very much on getting our protagonists into the right place for the finale. What I liked The pacing.  Despite the fact that Empire of Storms is primarily focussed on getting the team into place for the final confrontation...

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Court of Fives by Kate Elliott is a YA fantasy book and one that I found myself being sucked into even in the middle of a reading slump. I found the protagonists engaging and loved the world. I found it had a bit more substance than some YA fantasy novels. What I liked Cultural tensions. This is very much a tale of being caught between two cultures.  Our protagonist, Jessamy, is the child of a Saroese father and Efean mother and struggles to fit...

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Paper and Fire by Rachel Caine is the second in The Great Library series and is the sequel to Ink and Bone, which was one of my favourite reads from last year.  I realised I never did a full review of it.  Bad Evelynne.  Paper and Fire was also one of my most anticipated reads for 2016 and it did not disappoint.  For those of you not familiar with this series, it is a contemporary alternate reality/fantasy in which the Great Library of Alexan...

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Julian Fellowes’s Belgravia is a new book/audiobook/app series from the creator of Downton Abbey.  It is set in the Belgravia quarter of London in 1841 with a prequel set in Brussels in 1815.  The lives of two families, the rich, titled Bellasis family and the nouveau riche Trenchards are brought together at the Duchess of Richmond’s ball and the effects are felt down the years.  It is available in ebook format, as an audiobook and as an a...

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The Wheel of Osheim by Mark Lawrence is the third and final book in his Red Queen’s War trilogy.  It continues the story of Jalan Kendeth as he continues to follow the path upon which fate has set him. The Red Queen’s War trilogy is set in the same world as, and dovetails with, Lawrence’s earlier Broken Empire trilogy.  In some ways that is both a blessing and a curse.  It’s a blessing because the world in which the trilogies are set i...

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A Thousand Pieces of You by Claudia Gray is a YA sci-fi mystery in which teenager Marguerite Caine must use technology developed by her parents, the Firebird, to chase her father’s murderer across multiple dimensions.  She finds out that things aren’t as they first seemed. I picked this book up partly because of this concept and partly because I’ve enjoyed books (Star Wars) by Claudia Gray.  Thanks to Amazon’s Whispersync for Voice I pi...

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Eligible by Curtis Sittenfeld is the fourth in the Austen Project of modern retellings of Jane Austen’s novels and attempts to bring her classic Pride and Prejudice into the 21st century.  Having read the other three Austen adaptations, I was intrigued to see how Sittenfeld would update the story of Elizabeth, Darcy, Jane and Bingley.  From experience I know that Austen adaptations, when done well, can be wonderful. (check out The Lizzie Benn...

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Now, pretty much anyone who has an interest in popular culture is aware that the first Star Wars movie since 2005, The Force Awakens, was released on December 18th 2015.  Full disclosure: while I consider myself a fan of Star Wars, I have only dabbled in the Extended Universe/Legends supplementary material.  Like many, though, I was anxious to see what J.J. Abrams would make of Lucas’ legacy and booked my ticket to a showing on release day. ...

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Back home from Chicago and Book Expo America!
Miscellaneous / May 15, 2016

So, as I’ve mentioned in my blog before, this year I attended BEA (Book Expo America) in Chicago.  As my books are being shipped, this is not my official BEA book haul – expect that one in a week to ten days! This was the first time I have attended, and I was both a little nervous and excited.  Although I’ve heard it described as San Diego Comic Con for booklovers, it is a trade show for those in the publishing industry as w...

The Trials of Apollo: The Hidden Oracle by Rick Riordan – Review
Book Reviews , e-Reader Reviews / May 3, 2016

The Trials of Apollo Book One The Hidden Oracle by Rick Riordan is the start of a new Greek mythology series from middle grade staple Rick Riordan.  This new series centres around the god Apollo, who has been stripped of his godly powers by his father, Zeus.  Naturally, adventures and shenanigans ensue. For me this read a little younger than the Heroes of Olympus series, more in line with Percy Jackson.  Apollo’s human persona is a...

Reading roundup – April 29th 2016
Book Reviews , Reading Roundup / April 29, 2016

Hello and welcome to another reading roundup.  I’ve clearly been on a bit of a social history kick lately – all of the books I’ve read and/or listened to in the last couple of weeks have had social change as a strong theme.  Let me tell you about them. [book-info]The Summer Before the War by Helen Simonson is a slice-of-life look at an English town in the summer of 1914, just before the First World War.  This conflict had a...

Eligible by Curtis Sittenfeld – Review
Audiobook reviews , Book Reviews / April 22, 2016

Eligible by Curtis Sittenfeld is the fourth in the Austen Project of modern retellings of Jane Austen’s novels and attempts to bring her classic Pride and Prejudice into the 21st century.  Having read the other three Austen adaptations, I was intrigued to see how Sittenfeld would update the story of Elizabeth, Darcy, Jane and Bingley.  From experience I know that Austen adaptations, when done well, can be wonderful. (check out The L...

Drums of Autumn by Diana Gabaldon – Review
Book Reviews , eBook reviews / April 11, 2016

Drums of Autumn by Diana Gabaldon is the fourth in the time travelling historical fiction series following our protagonists Claire and Jamie Fraser as they attempt to start a new life in the American Colonies. Weighing in at nearly 900 pages, or 44 hrs and 54 mins of audiobook, this is a real behemoth of a book.  It’s also the book on my shelf that’s taken me the longest to read.  GoodReads tells me that I finished the previous bo...

Walk on Earth a Stranger by Rae Carson – Review
Book Reviews , eBook reviews / April 4, 2016

Walk on Earth a Stranger by Rae Carson is the first in a young adult historical fantasy following the story of Leah Westfall, a young woman from Georgia with the gift of sensing gold.  Circumstances lead her to seek her fortune in California as part of the 1849 gold rush.  This first book deals with Leah’s departure from Georgia and the first part of her journey west. I really enjoyed this book.  I was highly invested in Leah’s s...

Reading roundup – March 30th 2016
Reading Roundup / March 30, 2016

Hello and welcome to another reading roundup.  Again, it’s been a month where I’ve really struggled to focus on reading and blogging.  I really should be more ruthless about putting books into my Did Not Finish pile.  I spent too much of the month plodding through books which really weren’t doing anything for me. [book-info]With regards to Yellow Brick War by Danielle Paige, I’ll be perfectly honest and say that my opinion an...

Lady Midnight by Cassandra Clare – Review
Book Reviews , eBook reviews / March 9, 2016

Lady Midnight by Cassandra Clare is the first in The Dark Artifices, a new Shadowhunters series set around the Shadowhunters Institute in LA.  It focusses on Emma Carstairs and her parabatai Julian Blackthorn, characters introduced in City of Heavenly Fire, the final book in the Mortal Instruments series.  This was one of my most anticipated reads of 2016 and I LOVED it.  The setup for Lady Midnight was one of the things I enjoyed mo...

A Gathering of Shadows by V.E. Schwab – Review (minor spoilers)
Book Reviews , eBook reviews / March 5, 2016

A Gathering of Shadows by V.E. Schwab is the second in the Darker Shade of Magic Series which centres on Kell, an Antari magician who has the ability to move between different worlds, and Lila, a young woman from “our” London who has ended up in Kell’s magical home world.  I really enjoyed the first book, A Darker Shade of Magic, and was very much looking forward to this next instalment.  I LOVED this book and am happy to recomm...

Glass Sword by Victoria Aveyard – Review
Book Reviews , eBook reviews / February 27, 2016

Glass Sword by Victoria Aveyard is the second in the Red Queen series and continues the story of Mare Barrow and her struggle to end the oppression of the non superpowered Reds by the Silvers.   When we left Mare at the end of Red Queen she was not in a good place, both in a practical sense and emotionally.  She feels betrayed by those she cared about and many of her allies are lost or alienated.  Nevertheless, she focusses herself o...