Heartless

31458203credit: goodreads

HeartlessMarissa Meyer

Genre: Fantasy, YA

RATING: ★★★★✩

Goodreads page

This was a real gem. But I expect nothing less from Marissa Meyer, who is the author of, still to this day, one of my absolute favourite fantasy series, The Lunar Chronicles. Now this was no Cinder or Cress so, in that regard, it did fall short. However, this book was still phenomenal and the creative backstory of the Red Queen in Wonderland was extremely enticing. I’m an absolute lover of Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland and Meyer’s work only enhanced my love for the Lewis Carroll’s world – Marissa Meyer is brilliant at taking inspiration from a pre-existing tale and morphing it into her own, all without tarnishing the original. It contains all things baking, forbidden love and magic – sound up your alley? A truly incredible read for most, I’d say.

Read More »

Advertisements

Harry Potter and the Cursed Child

29069989

Harry Potter and the Cursed Child – J.K. Rowling & Jack Thorne
Genre: Fantasy, Young Adult

RATING: ★★★✩✩

Goodreads page

Well, this was something… different. I’m not going to lie, when I first heard that they were releasing the script for the Cursed Child, I did not plan on reading it. I knew that, regardless of how incredible the story might be and how great it would be to return back to my favourite fantasy world ever, reading it as a play just wouldn’t be the same. And, saying that, I wasn’t overly excited by the plot anyway. I only think this worked because we know the world of Harry Potter so well; had I read this alone without background knowledge, I doubt I would have given it more than two stars at best. At the end of the day though, there were some quite endearing and nostalgic parts that, ultimately, leveled out the negatives enough to warrant a mediocre three stars.

Read More »

Stars Above

25689074.jpg

Stars Above – Marissa Meyer
Genre: Fantasy, Sci-fi, Novellas

RATING: ★★★★★

Goodreads page

I was so pleasantly surprised by this! It’s not often that a novella (or several for that matter) creates a good impression on me. I’m normally left wanting more depth and detail so novellas rarely cut it. That said, Stars Above was incredible! There were loads of short stories which gave a tremendous insight into the past of all the main characters of the series but, without a doubt, the greatest novella was the last one, which was set after Winter and saw the whole team come together again to celebrate Scarlet and Wolf’s wedding. I personally wasn’t a massive fan of Fairest, the prequel to the Lunar Chronicles which gave a background on Levana, so if you’re skeptical to read this collection because the other novella didn’t quite do anything for you, I can assure you that these novellas are incomparable and an absolute joy. Any fans of the Lunar Chronicles would, I am certain, really love this accumulation of epic short stories.

Read More »

Warbreaker

7969594

Warbreaker – Brandon Sanderson
Genre: High Fantasy

RATING: ★★★★★

Goodreads page

I can thank my two friends for encouraging me to give this one a go! With a lot of college reading over the summer, I knew a great big fantasy series just wasn’t on the cards but I wanted my fantasy fix and this did just that. If you’ve heard of Sanderson, you’ve probably heard of the Mistborn trilogy and while I sincerely loved that series, this stand-alone had something extra and I was even more impressed. Any fantasy lovers will know the genre has an abundance of epic fantasy series’s but is lacking in some powerful one-offs. Luckily, Warbreaker filled that void and by no half-measure either. Racking up to about 600 pages, it’s still hefty but provides a fast-paced, exciting tale that I guarantee will take an awful lot of willpower to put down!

Read More »

Daughter of Smoke and Bone

10305156

Daughter of Smoke and Bone (DOSAB #1) – Laini Taylor
Genre: Young Adult, Fantasy

RATING: ★★★★★

Goodreads page

I seem to be on a re-reading kick at the moment (and I’m not complaining!). This book was just as good as I remember it with such beautifully crafted characters through some incredible writing. Laini Taylor most definitely knows how to make a dull scene interesting. Great for anyone who is looking for an introduction to the fantasy genre and for those who really appreciate good writing.

Read More »

Throne of Glass

13519397

Throne of Glass (Throne of Glass #1) – Sarah J. Maas
Genre: Young Adult, Fantasy

RATING: ★★★★★

Goodreads page

This book was even better the second time round! I read Throne of Glass when it was all the hype a couple of years ago and absolutely adored it, along with the current sequels. There are a few more being released into this series soon, including Empire of Storms (coming out in September – so exciting!!) and a TOG colouring book around the same time too! These books are about a young assassin named Celaena Sardothien who has been taken out from the mines in Endovier, where she is currently imprisoned, to partake in a competition against fellow felons and criminals to become the King’s Champion, where she’ll have four years of service before absolute freedom. Being the self-assured, confident character that she is, Celaena doesn’t quite anticipate the strength of her competitors, like monstrous Cain, and other difficulties that stand in her way. Who knows if she can do it? And at what cost?

Read More »

Maddie Recommends: Fantasy

I thought I would create a new series on the blog that I’ll release every now and again, that being a classic recommendations post. There are so many amazing books that I’ve read in the past that I feel the need to share and discuss with you but, without the novel fresh in my memory, I know I’d struggle to write a proper review so I thought this would be next best thing! Likewise, if you ever fancy a book from a particular genre then there should hopefully always be a post to directly go to! So, seeing as fantasy is one of my absolute favourite genres, I thought it’d be a good idea to start with that so here are my top fantasy books that I’d recommend:

MistbornBrandon Sanderson (s)
I read this trilogy for the first time in 2015 and it was amazing. Sanderson is adding to the trilogy rather rapidly (2 books this year!) and I cannot wait to see where they take our characters. The characters in these books are probably the driving force for me; I adore Vin’s fiery, vivacious attitude and the countless relationships she forms with the group. These novels are seriously unique, my favourite concept being the burning of metals, which really sets it apart from other fantasy novels. They’re chunky books and admittedly, for all three of them. it does take me about 100 pages in to get myself hooked but once I am, you’ll have to struggle with me before I put it down!

Daughter of Smoke and BoneLaini Taylor (t)
These books are some of the most beautifully written novels out there. The descriptions are so vivid that you cannot help but take your time with them, you must appreciate how meticulously every word has been selected. A far less conventional fantasy, we follow Karou who has a very different life to what one may perceive from the outside, one filled with theft and mystery. I’d rather say too little than too much about this trilogy because I think it can really speak for itself once you get going.

The Lunar ChroniclesMarissa Meyer (s)
TLC are a series of books that are, simple, fairy-tale re-tellings; Cinder telling the tale of Cinderella, Scarlet telling the tale of Little Red Riding Hood, Cress telling the tale of Rapunzel and Winter telling the tale of Snow White. If that doesn’t intrigue you enough, how about sticking them in a futuristic world that contains cyborgs and androids? As the series progresses, another fairy-tale princess is added and by the end, they all work together to fight against the evil empress of Luna, Levana, who wishes to takeover Earth and have all the ‘earthens’ worship her courtship. These books have some real inspirational female characters and I truly adore how Meyer took elements from the traditional fairy-tales and integrated them so craftily (the amount of times I’ve stopped reading and thought, ‘oh I see what she’s done there!’). A great, introductory read to the genre!

Throne of Glass Sarah J. Maas (s)
Wowee, I hate to be predictable but there’s a reason everyone raves about these books. This perfectly flowing series contains one of my top female protagonists of all time, but that certainly wasn’t the case in the beginning. When everybody adored Celaena Sardothian for her badass attitude, I was rolling my eyes in distaste; I found her boastful and arrogant. But you cannot help falling in love with her, the first novel consists of a challenge of which Celaena must win or she’ll be returned to her past life. The love triangle is frustrating, yes, but as the series goes on, becomes less significant to the plot, which I do prefer. This is going to be a hell of a long series so if you fancy joining me on the ride, come along!

The Bone SeasonSamantha Shannon (s)
A brilliant series that follows Paige, a teenage clairvoyant in Scion London. Paige beholds special abilities that categorised her as a ‘dreamwalker’, somebody who can look into and depart from the minds of the public. When she is suddenly captured, she embarks upon a frighteningly unique adventure. There was a lot of action in the first two novels and I’m glad that The Mime Order (no.2) gave more of an explanation of the world Paige lives in, which I had thought was lacking in the first novel. Beautiful writing that accompanies a thrilling story.

A Song of Ice and Fire George R.R Martin (s)
These are some chunky, intimidating books but they’re certainly rewarding once you finish one! As with the television series, there are so many characters thrown in all at once in the first book which can be a little overwhelming (I ended up watching the first season in full before returning to book just so I could get my head around the characters!). Personal favourite characters are Sansa Stark, for the difficulties she’s faced and the sheer miserable, sassy attitude she manages to maintain throughout the books and Tyrion Lannister, the humorous dwarf were all know and love. The writing is very simple and easy to follow which makes the thousands of pages seem more feasible! A must-read for fans of the show and anyone who wants fantasy without the magical, supernatural elements but still all the mystery and excitement.

Happy Reading Bookworms!