Reviews

Book review ~ The Seventh Sun, Lani Forbes (Spoiler-free)

The Seventh Sun
Author : Lani Forbes
Genre : YA Fantasy
Release date : 18th February 2020
⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

Synopsis

The sun of the Chicome people has been destroyed six times. First by water, then by storm, fire, famine, sickness, and beasts. After each apocalypse, the creator goddess allowed one of her divine children to sacrifice themselves to save civilization. The gods paid their blood as the price for the lives of the people, and the people owed them blood in return.

Mayana is a noble descendant of the water goddess and can control water whenever her blood is spilled. She has always despised the brutal rituals of her people — especially sacrifices. She can’t even make it through a routine animal sacrifice without embarrassing her family. Prince Ahkin has always known he would be emperor, but he didn’t expect his father to die so suddenly. Now he must raise the sun in the sky each day and read the signs in the stars. But the stars now hint at impending chaos and the sun has begun setting earlier each evening. Ahkin fears he might not be strong enough to save his people from another apocalypse. And to add to his list of worries, he can’t truly become emperor until he selects a wife.

Mayana and six other noble daughters are sent to the palace to compete for Ahkin’s hand. She must prove she is a true daughter of water and face the others who have their own magical gifts from wielding the elements to the control of animals, plants and healing. And in a society centered on rigid rituals, Mayana must conceal her traitorous beliefs because if she doesn’t make Ahkin love her, she will become a ceremonial sacrifice to bless his marriage. But darker forces are at play and it won’t matter if Mayana loses if the world ends first…

Rich in imagination and romance, and based on the legends and history of the Aztec and Mayan people, The Seventh Sun brings to vivid life a world on the edge of apocalyptic disaster. 

My opinion

This was the perfect mix between The Selection and ancient Aztec/Maya/Inca mythology. I loved it from the beginning to the end, with one slight exception.

We have Prince Ahkin, whose father, the emperor of the Chicome has just died unexpectedly, and who must now become emperor himself, choose a bride among several royal daughters and deal with the empire’s looming war. On the other side, we have Mayana (I LOVE that name !), one of the royal daughters sent to Prince Ahkin, capable of mastering water and possessing quite a strong mind.

Mayana must take part in several trials to hope to become the Chicome’s next empress. If she fails, she dies.
Among all that, some political plots blossom , the enemies of the empire taking advantage of the death of the emperor.

The whole book is set in an ancient Aztec etc… like world. I don’t think I have read one before, and what a shame it is. I really loved that setting, and even though I’m sure all the traditions depicted in the book are not all real, it was like diving in a parallel ancient world reminding me a lot of Tomb Raider.

All in all, the trials for a prince trope reminded me of The Selection series by Kiera Cass, and I had loved that specific trope. Mayana was really a loveable character, and I thought she handled the competition really well. Of course, competition means competitors. And if there are competitors, there’s jealousy, and where there’s jealousy, there’s a mean girl.

Yes, it was probably expected with that trope, but I was disappointed by how cliché this was. We have that one girl who really dislikes Mayana because she’s great, and who does everything in her power to put Mayana in tricky positions. That was just overdone in my opinion.

However, the cliché aspect of things is the only thing I disliked about the book. My guilty pleasure is reading about royalty falling in love, so I awwww-ed while reading all the cute moments between Ahkin and Mayana (which is a lot in the book) so I was more than happy with the book.

The rythm of the story flowed nicely, nothing was rushed, and it introduced quite smoothly a deeper plot for the following book. I don’t know how many sequels there will be, but I know I’ll probably make sure to read them. I definitely want more of Ahkin and Mayana, and the cliffhanger the book leaves us with is so gripping I can’t do anything else than wait impatiently for the next book !

That was honestly a fast and entertaining read, so don’t hesitate to pre-order it soon ! I’ll be telling you all about it again when it releases anyway 😉

Thanks for reading !
See you soon,
Love, Jade ❤

Reviews

Short review ~ Cat and Cat, Christophe Cazenove (comic)

Cat and Cat
Author : Christophe Caznove
Genre : Comic
⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

Synopsis

Life was quiet for Cath and her dad, living alone. But when they adopt a cat named Sushi, things get a bit too exciting! Between turning everything into either a personal scratching post or litter box, and the constant cat and mouse game of “love me/leave me alone,” Cath and Dad have a lot to learn! Cath also learns how good it is to have a constant companion, a role Cath’s dad is trying to fill on his own. It’s a hilarious and heartwarming adventure of daily life of this little girl…with a dad and a cat along for the ride!

My opinion

That was a super entertaining comic ! Like many of you, I’m a cat lover, so a comic called Cat & Cat is bound to call my name haha.

I only realized this now, but this is from the same guy who is behind “The Sisters” series, and I also loved that series as a teen.

Filled with comics that don’t follow each other (Yay short stories ! :D), this comic is both cute and funny. I loved reading about the little family moments centered around Sushi the cat, which are soooooooo relatable. I mean, seriously, that cat is a little demon, and he reminded me so much about my own cat !

The topic of this comic makes it readable by everyone in the family, whether you’re 7 or 90, and it’s a great comic to read to your kid when you want to share a moment with them. Or even to read when you’re alone, you’ll still find it fun 🙂

After a while without reading much and doing non-bookish things, I’m finally around again ! I still have finals going on, but I think I might manage my time a little better in the next weeks 😀 I’ll try and catch up with your posts from this week soon 😘

Thanks for reading !
See you soon
Love, Jade ❤

Wrap up

November wrap-up and chat !

First of all, happy Thanksgiving (a day late) to all of you who celebrate 😀 I personnally don’t, as this tradition is absolutely not implemented in France. I’m also generally thankful for people and stuff 24/7, so I don’t really see the need to celebrate it. To those who celebrated, I hope you had a great time with your friends, family and the people you love ❤

This month has been (and still is) kind of stressful for me, as finals are looming over me, and group projects deadlines are starting to hit. Since I’m not very social IRL, working in a group stresses me out a lot so I’m even more on edge than usual. I know December won’t be much better since 80% of the finals will take place then, mostly in the same week, so I might be a little away from the blogging community that specific week. Don’t worry, if I go dark that week, I’ll be back on by Christmas 😀

Now, let’s see what I read this month ! I read a whooping 7 books in November, which is HUGE for me, especially when you consider all the work I had to do this month !

A treason of thorns | Laura E. Weymouth | ⭐⭐⭐⭐ | My review

A book full of magic, with an ok main character and an underappreciated sidekick. It was a really entertaining read and I read it pretty fast !

The Will and the Wilds | Charlie N. Holmberg | ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ | My review

We follow Enna, a young girls who finds herself entangled in a world of magic and monsters and who has to cooperate with one of them to save herself. I absolutely loved this. It releases in January, and I WILL tell you about it again at that time.

Night Spinner | Addie Thorley | ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ | My review

I AM IN LOVE WITH THIS BOOK, THIS SERIES AND ADDIE THORLEY. I mean, it’s a YA fantasy with a female warrior working for the empire who infiltrates the rebels. It’s just amazing. It releases in February, and you will NEED it.

Unfollow Me | Charlotte Duckworth | ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ | My review

I don’t usually read mysteries, but this time, it was a social media related mystery, and I found that interesting. The way it escalated turned out to be incredible and took me inside the mind of normal people who maybe are not who we think they are at all. Really good.

Captive Prince | C.S Pacat | ⭐⭐ | My review

I saw so much hype for this book all around the community, but it just didn’t make it for me… It was just sex and parties and no real plot whatsoever, ot at least it was not really highlighted. I was really disappointed.

The Queen of Nothing | Holly Black | ⭐⭐⭐⭐ | My review

Aaaah, I’ve waited so long for this conclusion to the series… While it was enjoyable, I thought it was the worst book of the series, and the conclusion for many characters was just rushed and it gave me no closure. It felt too easy. It was good, but not outstanding.

The Vinyl Underground| Rob Rufus | ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ | My review

A touching portrait of 4 teens in 1968, trying to deal with various issues, such as grief, war, and finding yourself. I loved it ! It will release in March 2020 ! Make sure to save the date !

All right, that’s it ! I’m glad it was a good reading month and most books were amazing, except Captive Prince. I really had a book crush on Night Spinner, so really make sure you know about it because it will definitely blow up next year ❤

Thanks for reading,
See you soon,
Love, Jade ❤

Reviews

Book review ~ The Vinyl Underground, Rob Rufus (spoiler-free)

The Vinyl Underground
Author : Rob Rufus
Genre : Historical fiction/Contemporary
Release date : March 3rd 2020
⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

Synopsis

During the tumultuous year of 1968, four teens are drawn together: Ronnie Bingham, who is grieving his brother’s death in Vietnam; Milo, Ronnie’s bookish best friend; “Ramrod,” a star athlete who is secretly avoiding the draft; and Hana, the new girl, a half-Japanese badass rock-n-roller whose presence doesn’t sit well with their segregated high school.

The four outcasts find sanctuary in “The Vinyl Underground,” a record club where they spin music, joke, debate, and escape the stifling norms of their small southern town. But Ronnie’s eighteenth birthday is looming. Together, they hatch a plan to keep Ronnie from being drafted. But when a horrific act of racial-charged violence rocks the gang to their core, they decide it’s time for an epic act of rebellion.

My opinion

Even though the whole story is set during the 60’s, I still qualify this book as a contemporary. Which makes me say it’s the first contemporary I truly enjoyed in over a year ! I read super slowly in the beggining but after reading 20% in 8 days, I ended up reading the remaining 80% in 2.5h. It was that captivating.

Ronnie, Milo, Lewis and Hana, 4 teens in Florida make up The Vinyl Underground, a club in which they can express themselves and gather around music. Together, they have to face the unfairness of the Vietnam war looming over them, and which has already taken Ronnie’s brother, fight against the racism that Hana receives every day, and generally find a way to steer in this life where so many things seem unjust.

It was the first time I read about teens in the 60’s, and their views on the Vietnam war. I thought it was a really well written book, that propels the reader back in time. The 4 main characters bond together through the music Ronnie’s brother left behind, as well as their dream of peace. To emphasize that, when the club meets, they listen to vinyls, and often Ronnie’s brother’s vinyls, that are paired with letter he sent from the war. That was something I really loved and found touching.

Hana, clearly the leader of the club is a fierce lady, and an activist for peace. She is the catalyst that makes Ronnie, Lewis and Milo really think about the war, and the probability that THEY could be drafted soon after school ends. She was definitely my favorite character of the book. Generally, the way the 4 characters are loyal to each other is heart-warming and I truly felt their friendship seeping though the pages. They’re adorable badass characters. Yes, that’s possible.

To prevent Ronnie from being drafted, and help Hana regarding the everyday racism she faces, to make the world they live in more just, the Vinyl Underground gathers, makes plans, dreams of a better world, and most of all, takes action. And that my friends, makes for an amazing book, filled with emotions and powerful messages. I truly hope you will all like this book ❤

I may or may not have finished reading this today because I didn’t feel like studying for my finals…. I’m not sure if I regret it or not…. I guess I’ll have to have more motivation for studying tomorrow !
Thanks for reading !
See you soon,
Love, Jade ❤

Reviews

Book review ~ The Queen of Nothing, Holly Black (spoiler-free)

The Cruel Prince
Author : Holly Black
Genre : YA Fantasy
⭐⭐⭐⭐

Synopsis

Power is much easier to acquire than it is to hold onto. Jude learned this lesson when she released her control over the wicked king, Cardan, in exchange for immeasurable power.

Now as the exiled mortal Queen of Faerie, Jude is powerless and left reeling from Cardan’s betrayal. She bides her time determined to reclaim everything he took from her. Opportunity arrives in the form of her deceptive twin sister, Taryn, whose mortal life is in peril.

Jude must risk venturing back into the treacherous Faerie Court, and confront her lingering feelings for Cardan, if she wishes to save her sister. But Elfhame is not as she left it. War is brewing. As Jude slips deep within enemy lines she becomes ensnared in the conflict’s bloody politics.

And, when a dormant yet powerful curse is unleashed, panic spreads throughout the land, forcing her to choose between her ambition and her humanity…

My opinions

I enjoyed this book, but I thought it was the worst of the series…

My first impression can pretty much be summed up by this : Hum… Hi, hello… Can someone tell me WTF happened to Cardan ?

We start with Jude, exiled in the human world, with her sister and Oak. She does little jobs for faeries in the mortal land, until Taryn shows up on her doorstep, begging her to pretend to be her for a trial for murder. Of course, Jude being Jude, she says yes, and it all goes downhill from there.

The story in itself isn’t bad. I just feel like Holly Black wrote what she felt we would want to read for this conclusion. Yes, I did want to see an epic battle between Cardan and Madoc. Did I expect what we got ? No. Was I disappointed ? Kind of. It could have been so much more than what we got. I mean, there was no big reveal in the book. Just random stuff happening. The part I loved the most was when Jude was posing as Taryn in the beginning. After that, I enjoyed reading, but I had higher hopes for everything.

When the focus of the book was supposed to be battle and redemption, it was merely love. Love everywhere, for everyone. Sure, I like some romance in the book, but I don’t want it to be the main action in the last book of a series that had been thrilling until now.

Biggest disappointment is Cardan though. WHAT DID YOU DO TO HIM HOLLY ? We left a sassy, brilliant and manipulating Cardan, and we find now a lovesick puppy. NO. That’s not MY Cardan. For once, I felt like Jude was the only one with some common sense in the book.
I also felt like many characters were just thrown under the bus, and left with no real conclusion to their stories. It might be voluntary because of potential spin-offs, but I was a little skeptical about the side characters. Locke, Nicasia, the Bomb, the Ghost, Oak, Oriana all deserved some better closures. Their endings were just thrown around like “Ok, so that happens to Locke, that happens to the Bomb. Why ? Because.” I wanted more.

That being said I still enjoyed reading this conclusion and the sappy side of me thought some things were cute and adorable. It’s just I didn’t expect cute and adorable from this book. I really liked the last action scene with Cardan and all (no spoilers, of course, but if you know, you know).

In the end, it’s a conclusion to the series. Is it good ? Well, at least it’s okay. I expected more, but it was satisfying enough. I really think only the hardcore fans of the series can really enjoy it though.

Have you read it ? Did you like it ? I’d really like to know if I’m the only one who felt a little let down about Cardan !
Thanks for reading !
See you soon,
Love, Jade

Non classé · Tags

Book Tag ~ Real Neat Blog Award

Hey guys ! I was nominated by Joanna @TheGeekishBrunette for the Real Neat Blog Award ! Thanks girl ❤ If you don’t know her yet, just click on the link and have your mind blown ! Here is a little presentation I copied from Joanna’s blog 😀

The Origins of the Real Neat Blog Award

Before I answer the questions I did a little googling to try and find the origins of this award and the earliest reference I can find to it goes all the way back to 2014 and to a blog called Dear Kitty, Some Blog.

The award came about as a way to highlight bloggers that need more attention because of their awesome content on their blogs and the first logo ever created for the award is this one that I found on the same Dear Kitty, Some Blog page:

The Rules:

  • Display the Award Logo.
  • Thank the blogger who nominated you and post a link to their blog.
  • Answer the questions of the one who nominated you.
  • Nominate some bloggers.
  • Ask them seven questions.

What Joanna asked :

  1. Why did you decide to start your blog?

    I had a bookstagram page (still existing btw, but I’m not on it much anymore) and wanted to write longer reviews without exhausting myself by typing on my phone for a million years. I saw many others bookstagrammers had a blog and I joined in in May 2019 ! No regrets ❤
  2. What’s the worst book you have read?

    Oh. That’s gotta be Steel Frame by Andrew Skinner. It was supposed to be an ambitious sci-fi book dealing with incredible topics such as the relationship between humans and machine (nothing romantic, it was more like exo-armor skeletons), but from page one I couldn’t understand anything. I didn’t even know the MC’s gender or name. Horrible.
Steel Frame

3. What’s your favorite book trope?

Not gonna lie, I really enjoy ennemies to lovers and strangers bound together by a great mission !

4. If there was something you could change about any book, what would it be and what is the book?

Dramione. Just. Dramione. I have shipped them my all life and it would have been amazing if J.K Rowling had found a way for them together in some kind of redemption kind of trope (yeah, you can add this one to the previous question too haha). Soooo many Dramione fanfiction were read and written when I was young 😂

Dramione - Dramione Photo (2336397) - Fanpop
Those fanart were the real deal 😂

5. Do you have any hobbies outside of reading?

I play video games a lot, and sometimes, I insist on the word SOMETIMES, I try to do some sports (lately yoga, which I’m a little good at for once). I also recently discover I don’t hate cooking !

6. If you could give someone the best piece of advice you have, what would that advice be?

Do whatever makes you happy. If you want to do something, if you have the means to do it, just do it. Even for small things. Want to go visit a museum, go to the cinema but have no one to come with you ? So what ? Go.

7. Where would you love to vacation?

I’d love to visit Cambodia and its temples. Also Egypt and the pyramids ! That would be a dream. When I can afford it and have a few weeks ahead of me, I’ll definitely do that.

Here are my questions for the next ones !

  1. What’s your favorite childhood book ?
  2. What’s your dream job ?
  3. What is your favorite standalone book ?
  4. Do you have a favorite book to screen adaptation ?
  5. What’s your guilty pleasure book ?
  6. What is your favorite type of bookish merch ?
  7. You can only meet one author and can spend the day with them. Who is it and what do you do ?

I tag :

  1. Nen & Jen
  2. Simone
  3. Clara
  4. Elysa

Have fun everyone ! Thanks for reading !
See you soon,
Love, Jade ❤

Reviews

Book review ~ Captive Prince, C.S Pacat (Spoiler-free)

Captive Prince
Author : C.S Pacat
Genre : Fantasy
⭐⭐

Synopsis

Damen is a warrior hero to his people, and the rightful heir to the throne of Akielos. But when his half brother seizes power, Damen is captured, stripped of his identity, and sent to serve the prince of an enemy nation as a pleasure slave.

Beautiful, manipulative, and deadly, his new master, Prince Laurent, epitomizes the worst of the court at Vere. But in the lethal political web of the Veretian court, nothing is as it seems, and when Damen finds himself caught up in a play for the throne, he must work together with Laurent to survive and save his country.

For Damen, there is just one rule: never, ever reveal his true identity. Because the one man Damen needs is the one man who has more reason to hate him than anyone else…

My opinion

I’m not too sure what to think about this. I guess I don’t really know what the point of the plot is. Or, well I know that Damen tries to go back to Akielos and reclaim his rightful place, but honestly, it was never really put in motion through the book.

For once I’m not going to have a proper structure for this review because I don’t freaking know where this is going. Everyone seems to love this book, and I feel like the only idiot who just didn’t think anything about it. Just…Meh. Meh is the word for what I felt when realizing the book was finished.

I felt like the whole story was Damen and Laurent having some hateful and sexual tension around them at all times, parties, sex, lust. There is some political plot involved but I felt like it was underexploited and I really felt confused while reading. I’m not sure I got what was the point of 60% of the scenes in the book.

It was a fast read, since I mostly didn’t feel or think anything while reading, so I guess that was nice. Also, my eyes just skimmed over half the words because it always was the same pattern all through the book : Damen in a bad position -> calls Laurent -> Laurent finds clever way to make things work -> Damen does something stupid/reckless -> Damen is in a bad position, and so on…

I’m just so disappointed by Captive Prince. The plot held so much promises and I didn’t feel it delivered. I’m hesitating to buy the rest of the series, because I fear I won’t be interested in the story more in the sequels. If you have an opinion on it, I will gladly hear it !

I’m feeling kind of tired lately and am starting to work seriously on the exams coming up at uni in a couple weeks, so I have been, and probably will be a little less active here and on your blogs !
Thank you for reading !
See you soon,
Love, Jade ❤