#BookThoughts | Sea Witch by Sarah Henning

Sea Witch by Sarah Henning
Published by Katherine Tegen Books on July 31st 2018
Genres: Young Adult, Fantasy
Pages: 368
Format: Hardcover | Audiobook | e-Book

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#Review | Sea Witch by Sarah Henning

Sea Witch
Sea WitchSea Witch by Sarah Henning
Published by Katherine Tegen Books on July 31st 2018
Genres: Young Adult, Fantasy
Pages: 368
Format: ARC

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Spindle Fire by Lexa Hillyer | REVIEW

reviewsSpindle Fire by Lexa Hillyer
Published by HarperCollins on April 11th 2017
Genres: Young Adult, Fantasy
Pages: 351
Format: ARC

LINKS: Good Reads | Amazon | Indigo | Book Depository

Spindle FireHalf sisters Isabelle and Aurora are polar opposites: Isabelle is the king’s headstrong illegitimate daughter, whose sight was tithed by faeries; Aurora, beautiful and sheltered, was tithed her sense of touch and her voice on the same day. Despite their differences, the sisters have always been extremely close.

And then everything changes, with a single drop of Aurora’s blood–and a sleep so deep it cannot be broken.

As the faerie queen and her army of Vultures prepare to march, Isabelle must race to find a prince who can awaken her sister with the kiss of true love and seal their two kingdoms in an alliance against the queen.

Isabelle crosses land and sea; unearthly, thorny vines rise up the palace walls; and whispers of revolt travel in the ashes on the wind. The kingdom falls to ruin under layers of snow. Meanwhile, Aurora wakes up in a strange and enchanted world, where a mysterious hunter may be the secret to her escape . . . or the reason for her to stay.

🌟🌟🌟🌟

4 Stars

** Received an ARC from HCC Frenzy for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion at all. Thank you!! **

First Line:

Winter seemed to come early in 1313, the year Aurora was born.


Review

COVER 🌟🌟🌟🌟     PLOT 🌟🌟🌟🌟

CHARACTERS 🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟      WORLD🌟🌟🌟🌟

WRITING 🌟🌟🌟🌟     ROMANCE 🌟🌟🌟🌟


Spindle Fire by Lexa Hillyer is a uniquely told retelling of the classic fairy tale of Sleeping Beauty. I can honestly say I went in with low expectations and walked away with a great story that was both visually and mentally appealing to read.

The Good

Unique Retelling

I’ve read many fairy tale retellings in my time as an avid reader and it’s hard to be surprised because you tend to know what is going to happen. But Spindle Fire takes bits and pieces of Sleeping Beauty and turns it on it’s head for something that was completely unique and fun to read.

Hillyer manages to create two very different sisters; each with their own personalities and specialties. Aurora is mute and has no sense of touch while Isabelle is blind. These senses were taken from them at Aurora’s christening by greedy fairies in exchange for other princess like qualities.

Then you throw in a dream world, two very evil fairy queens out for revenge and you have Spindle Fire in a nutshell. I quite enjoyed these new twists to the classic tale!

Love the Characters

Aurora is sweet is and sheltered as the crown princess. She doesn’t let her shortcomings rule her world. She seeks justice and knowledge and loves spending all her free time with her sister. Isabelle is headstrong and brave. As the King’s illegitimate daughter she holds no standing in the royal family. But she doesn’t let that stop her from being with her sister. The two are inseparable.

I loved seeing the sister relationship take a major role in the story. Hillyer does a great job showing that a princess can save herself. She doesn’t always need a prince to come save the day!

Beautiful Writing / World Building

The world of Spindle Fire is beautifully depicted by Hillyer. All the descriptions are extraordinarily appealing to the imagination. She built a world that wasn’t too complicated, but still not a basic fantasy back drop.

Together, the writing and the world go hand in hand. It all comes across quite grand and exceeds expectations!

The Bad

A Little Frustrated

A book is never with out a little frustrations. So it didn’t surprise me that there were some aspects of Spindle Fire that left me a little frustrated. Whether it was a certain characters actions or a specific direction the book took, there was definitely a couple things that erked me a bit. But sadly I have to leave it at that to avoid spoilers.


I highly recommend this one if you like sisterly love, cool dream worlds, and fairy take retellings. Let me know what you guys thought of Spindle Fire by Lexa Hillyer! I would love to hear your opinions as well!

Until next time,

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#AKingdomBurns

Lexa HillyerI’m the author of Spindle Fire (coming April 2017 from Harper!), Proof of Forever, and the poetry collection Acquainted with the Cold, which won the 2012 Foreword Book of the Year Award’s Gold Prize for Poetry. I’m also the co-founder of creative development company Paper Lantern Lit. My poetry was anthologized in Best New Poets 2012, and appears in several journals. I live in Carroll Gardens with my husband, daughter, and a very skinny orange tree.

The Wish Granter by C.J. Redwine | REVIEW

reviewsThe Wish Granter by C.J. Redwine (Ravenspire #2)
Published by Balzer + Bray on February 14th 2017
Genres: Young Adult, Fantasy, Retelling
Pages: 432
Format: ARC

LINKS: Good Reads | Amazon | Indigo | Book Depository

The Wish GranterThe world has turned upside down for Thad and Ari Glavan, the bastard twins of Súndraille’s king. Their mother was murdered. The royal family died mysteriously. And now Thad sits on the throne of a kingdom whose streets are suddenly overrun with violence he can’t stop.

Growing up ignored by the nobility, Ari never wanted to be a proper princess. And when Thad suddenly starts training Ari to take his place, she realizes that her brother’s ascension to the throne wasn’t fate. It was the work of a Wish Granter named Alistair Teague who tricked Thad into wishing away both the safety of his people and his soul in exchange for the crown.

So Ari recruits the help of Thad’s enigmatic new weapons master, Sebastian Vaughn, to teach her how to fight Teague. With secret ties to Teague’s criminal empire, Sebastian might just hold the key to discovering Alistair’s weaknesses, saving Ari’s brother—and herself.

But Teague is ruthless and more than ready to destroy anyone who dares stand in his way—and now he has his sights set on the princess. And if Ari can’t outwit him, she’ll lose Sebastian, her brother…and her soul.

🌟🌟🌟🌟

4 Stars

** Received an ARC from HCC Frenzy for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion at all. Thank you!! **

First Line:

Once Upon a Time… humans were pathetically predictable.


Review

COVER 🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟     PLOT 🌟🌟🌟🌟

CHARACTERS 🌟🌟🌟🌟      ROMANCE 🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟

WRITING 🌟🌟🌟🌟     WORLD 🌟🌟🌟🌟


The Wish Granter by C.J. Redwine is the companion to last year’s The Shadow Queen. This time around we move to a different kingdom in this world and follow siblings, Thadeus and Arianna, the new king and princess of their land. After making a wish with the sinister Teague to save their lives, Ari must find a way to break the contract or her kingdom will belong in the hands of the most sinister villain there ever lived!

The Good

Strong-Willed Heroine

I fell in love with Ari the moment she jumped out on the page in The Wish Granter. From being a lowly servant girl to being thrust into a new world as princess, she was handling it quite well. At least in ways she thought were right. Her and her brother are the King’s children that he had with a servant many years ago and not in line for the throne. But after the wish Thad made the old royal family dies and they take up the mantle.

Ari is strong, a little clumsy, inquisitive, smart, and doesn’t compromise from what she believes is right. She was as real as real could get and I appreciated that. She never let the glitz and glam of being a princess stop her from joining the other servants in the kitchen like she used to in her past life. When things get tough, she steps up and fights for everyone who needs it. Even if it means stopping at nothing to stop the sinister Teague!

Romance Done Right

I find that in fantasy, it’s hard to do a romance right, all while trying to build a world and keep the story moving along. But in The Wish Granter Redwine does just that. We meet Sebastian after Thad hires him to be the new weapons master. Ari believes she needs the perfect weapon to take down Teague so she enlists the help of Sebastian. Over the course of the story they build friendship, trust, and eventually love.

Redwine didn’t make it instant, or lust worthy. She made it real. It was cute to read their inner monologues when they were beginning to catch feelings for each other. It just felt right to me.

Sinister Villain

One of the biggest highlights of The Wish Granter was obviously the person the novel was named after. Alistair Teague is fae, one of the strongest wish granters in all the kingdom. He was banished from his the fae lands to forever live alone. He has spent centuries bitter and planning his revenge for world domination so to speak. When he comes across Thad and Ari, he comes up with the perfect way to do just that. Take over Sundraille, then the other kingdoms will fall to their knees.

Redwine managed to create a villain that was not only evil, but Teague was cunning, intelligent, and all the way sinister. Everything he does is to benefit himself and the empire of crime he created over the years. He breathes fear into anyone that tries to cross him. No one’s soul is safe from his greedy hands. I loved it!

The Bad

Magical House

I thought the whole “house was alive with fae magic” was a tad bit lame. The moment Ari found out the walls were breathing and that the house was feeling her I couldn’t stop my eyes from rolling. So if this is the only thing I could find bad about The Wish Granter, then I think it’s safe to say this book was amazing!


I highly recommend this one. You don’t have to have read the first book in order to enjoy this one. They are standalones that share the same world. Let me know what you guys thought of The Wish Granter by C.J. Redwine I would love to hear your opinions as well!

Until next time,

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#DontMakeAWish

C.J. RedwineC.J. Redwine loves fairy tales, Harry Potter, and any movie starring Johnny Depp. She is the author of the Defiance trilogy, a post-apocalyptic fantasy from Balzer + Bray. C.J. lives in Nashville with her husband and children. If the novel writing gig ever falls through, she’ll join the Avengers and wear a cape to work every day. To learn more about C.J., visit her website at www.cjredwine.com

Blood of Wonderland | Waiting on Wednesday [#36]

Waiting on Wednesday

Hey guys!

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by Breaking the Spine that spotlights highly anticipated upcoming releases.

So here’s what I’m waiting on this week!


Blood of Wonderland

Author: Colleen Oakes
Series: Queen of Hearts Saga #2
Genre: YA, Retellings
Publisher: HarperTeen
Publication Date: January 31st 2017

goodreads

Blood of WonderlandDinah has been exiled from Wonderland. The vicious father she always feared has framed her for the brutal murder of her brother and turned the kingdom against her.

Now hiding in the lush and mysterious Twisted Wood with only her war steed at her side, Dinah is faced with a choice: leave Wonderland forever or stay and fight her father for the throne.

When a chance encounter with one of her father’s long-lost enemies brings Dinah more allies than she ever could have imagined, war starts to feel inevitable. But before Dinah can lead her people into combat, she must confront certain truths about her heart and her destiny—no matter how dark those truths may be.

Revolution is rising in Wonderland. Dinah’s battle has begun.

Why I’m Waiting

I loved loved loved Queen of Hearts! Everything Alice in Wonderland inspired immediately gets me excited. I can’t wait to see how Dinah delves more into the crazy ruthless queen we know and love (or hate).

P.S. Colleen Oakes is the author of Queen of Hearts!


What has you guys waiting this week? Let me know down below!

Until next time,

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Roseblood | Waiting on Wednesday [#31]

Waiting on Wednesday

Hey guys!

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by Breaking the Spine that spotlights highly anticipated upcoming releases.

So here’s what I’m waiting on this week!


Roseblood

Author: A.G. Howard
Series: N/A
Genre: YA, Retellings
Publisher: Amulet Books
Publication Date: January 10th 2017

goodreads

Rose BloodIn this modern day spin on Leroux’s gothic tale of unrequited love turned to madness, seventeen-year-old Rune Germain has a mysterious affliction linked to her operatic talent, and a horrifying mistake she’s trying to hide. Hoping creative direction will help her, Rune’s mother sends her to a French arts conservatory for her senior year, located in an opera house rumored to have ties to The Phantom of the Opera.

At RoseBlood, Rune secretly befriends the masked Thorn—an elusive violinist who not only guides her musical transformation through dreams that seem more real than reality itself, but somehow knows who she is behind her own masks. As the two discover an otherworldly connection and a soul-deep romance blossoms, Thorn’s dark agenda comes to light and he’s forced to make a deadly choice: lead Rune to her destruction, or face the wrath of the phantom who has haunted the opera house for a century, and is the only father he’s ever known.

Why I’m Waiting

I absolutely loved Howard’s other retellings of Alice in Wonderland. She knows how to make things dark and twisted. Which is perfect for a retelling of Phantom of the Opera! So I cannot wait to dive into this one!

P.S. A.G. Howard is the author of the Splintered Series!


What has you guys waiting this week? Let me know down below!

Until next time,

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Queen of Hearts by Colleen Oakes (Queen of Hearts Saga #1) | REVIEW

Queen of HeartsQueen of Hearts by Colleen Oakes (Queen of Hearts Saga #1)
Published by HarperTeen on May 3rd, 2016
Genres: Young Adult, Fantasy, Retelling
Pages: 320
Format: Hardcover

LINKS: Good Reads | Amazon | Indigo | Book Depository

As Princess of Wonderland Palace and the future Queen of Hearts, Dinah’s days are an endless monotony of tea, tarts, and a stream of vicious humiliations at the hands of her father, the King of Hearts. The only highlight of her days is visiting Wardley, her childhood best friend, the future Knave of Hearts — and the love of her life.

When an enchanting stranger arrives at the Palace, Dinah watches as everything she’s ever wanted threatens to crumble. As her coronation date approaches, a series of suspicious and bloody events suggests that something sinister stirs in the whimsical halls of Wonderland. It’s up to Dinah to unravel the mysteries that lurk both inside and under the Palace before she loses her own head to a clever and faceless foe.

Part epic fantasy, part twisted fairy tale, this dazzling saga will have readers shivering as Dinah’s furious nature sweeps Wonderland up in the maelstrom of her wrath.

🌟🌟🌟🌟

4 Stars

First Line:

“Oh, my future Queen, you’re late!”


Review

COVER 🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟                  PLOT 🌟🌟🌟

CHARACTERS 🌟🌟🌟🌟              ROMANCE 🌟🌟🌟

WRITING 🌟🌟🌟🌟             WORLD 🌟🌟🌟🌟

My fight to live does not begin now. I have been fighting all my life, I just didn’t know it.

Queen of Hearts – Colleen Oakes

The Good

  • I love the cover concept for this book. Making our main character the Queen of Hearts into an actual playing card was clever and really worked aesthetically with the overall vibe of the story. A++
  • Oakes took all our favorite characters from the original Alice in Wonderland story and brought them back to life a new and inventive characters. For example, the Chesire Cat is now the King’s personal advisor, the White Rabbit is the Queen of Hearts tutor and personal servant, and the Mad Hatter is actually her brother who is not all there in head. The only one I couldn’t peg was her step sister. I thought she could either be Alice herself or the White Queen. I guess we’ll find out more in as the story continues.
  • The world was mesmerizing and very creative. It wasn’t quite the weird and fun land we know of from Alice and Wonderland, but Oakes took what she could and created a vivid world for our imaginations to run wild with!
  • And finally, the writing. It was a quick and pleasant read for me. Only took 2 days to finish, and that’s because of the flowing writing style Oakes used to convey her story.

She was learning as quickly that what was right and what must happen weren’t always the same thing.

Queen of Hearts – Colleen Oakes

The Bad

  • I found the plot to be a lot of world and story set up, rather then an actual plot line. But I feel like this is nice ground work for the sequel to pick up from and I am thoroughly looking forward to how the Queen of Hearts gets herself out of the hot mess that was the ending.
  • The romance was probably one of the more disappointing aspects of the story for me. I mean it was there and somewhat prominent, but I didn’t feel an admiration for the couple at hand. I’m not “shipping” them together. I’m hoping for more sparks in the next book!

Ok, that’s it. Let me know what you guys thought of Queen of Hearts by Colleen Oakes! I would love to hear your opinions as well!

Until next time,

Sig 3

#OffWithYourHead

Colleen OakesColleen Oakes is the author of books for both teens and adults, including The Elly in Bloom Series, The Queen of Hearts Saga (Harper Collins 2016) and The Wendy Darling Saga. She lives in North Denver with her husband and son and surrounds herself with the most lovely family and friends imaginable. When not writing or plotting new books, Colleen can be found swimming, traveling and totally immersing herself in nerdy pop culture. She currently at work on another YA fantasy series and a stand-alone YA novel.

You can visit her webpage at: www.colleenoakes.net