THE RISE OF AURORA WEST takes familiar superhero tropes and flips them to a new angle, like a Batman story told through Robin’s eyes. Though Aurora’s monster fighting skills are a credit to her training, she’s also the intellectually curious lens through which readers question her world. Where did this war against monsters begin? Where do they come from? And what really happened all those years ago on the night when Aurora’s mother died…
Genre: Young Adult
SALT & STORM sounded so good, but unfortunately, the description and the book don’t actually match up, and not for the better. With a whiney heroine, strong deviation from a typical romance plotline, and some frustrating questions left unanswered, SALT & STORM isn’t a book I’ll be revisiting.
When a wicked bishop starts a witch hunt in Bavaria, orphan Rune finds herself targeted – but unlike most of the so-called witches caught in the net of hysteria, Rune really does have powers, and a reason to fear for her life. She also has an ally in the son of the local magistrate (called the Electorate), after he nearly tramples her with his horse. What follows in FOREST OF WHISPERS by Jennifer Murgia is a young adult romance, but, more importantly, a story about confronting the past, accepting where you come from, and embracing your strength.
MONSTROUS AFFECTIONS: AN ANTHOLOGY OF BEASTLY TALES was a mixed bag for me with some stories being pretty entertaining and spooky while others fell flat or just outright confused me. Each story involved a twist on a classic monster or monsters who inhabit the world living alongside humans.
Almost like GAME OF THRONES for the young adult set, HEIR OF FIRE follows assassin Celaena, captain Chaol, prince Dorian, healer Sorscha, and witch Manon. With all those characters, one may be concerned about getting lost. But though it started out slow, HEIR OF FIRE delivers plenty of the typical Maas action, plot twists and betrayals, leaving me holding my breath through at least the last four chapters.
This is one of those times I have to step back from a book that had me chair-dancing in glee and not rate it based on the end-of-book squeeage I felt, but to search for a little objectivity in my review. Reaction alone, this would be a five plus. Plus a few more.
Sucked in by the intriguing cover and blurb, I found myself captivated by STORM SIREN the minute I started reading. Though sometimes light on the world-building, in STORM SIREN, Weber creates a cast of fascinating characters, with lots of action, and tons of plot twists and turns to keep the reader on the edge of their seat.
Whereas ICONS was a fast-paced, rush of a novel, IDOLS is a slow burn, with bits and pieces offered to the reader throughout, until the big reveal at the end. While not a bad thing, my expectation was for a higher level of action, and I was mildly disappointed at the resulting slowness.
As haunting as a ghost story, SERVANTS OF THE STORM brings terror, doubt, and brief triumphs against staggering odds. As Dovey struggles amongst the wreckage and rot left behind by Hurricane Josephine, this is a story only to be read on safe, sunny afternoons when you can remind yourself that the storm isn’t real… no matter how true it feels.
OF METAL AND WISHES hits that perfect blend of interesting world building, real characters, and romantic danger. Reminiscent of The Phantom of the Opera and THE HUNGER GAMES, these familiar components click together to create an altogether different dynamic. I couldn’t get this story out of my head until the very last page, and now I daydream about what comes next.