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.

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Harry Potter and the Cursed Child

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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.

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Stars Above

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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.

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Daughter of Smoke and Bone

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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.

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Throne of Glass

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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?

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Salt to the Sea

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Salt to the SeaRuta Sepetys
Genre: Historical fiction, YA

RATING: ★★★✩✩

Goodreads page

As soon as I found out that Sepetys was releasing another book, the excitement levels were high. I absolutely adored her other two stand-alone novels, Out of the Easy and Between Shades of Gray. Historical fiction is also my favourite genre along with fantasy so to see a new one on the shelves got me seriously eager to read it. While the story was truly heart-breaking, I didn’t entirely enjoy it; struggling to connect to the characters and the abrupt ending to name a few problems. The writing was still beautiful though and Sepetys managed to translate a very sad story in a delicate, meaningful way.

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Mara Dyer series

The Unbecoming/Evolution/Retribution of Mara DyerMichelle Hodkin
Genre: Young Adult, Paranormal, Thriller

RATING: #1 – ★★★★★, #2 – ★★★★✩, #3 – ★★★✩✩

Goodreads page

This series, as a whole, was seriously good. It’s a shame that my fondness lessened as the series went on but my overall judgement towards the trilogy is positive. As a brief summary for the first book, Mara Dyer is a teenage girl who has recently moved away from her home town after experiencing a traumatic event that really shook her but the most frightful aspect is that she can’t remember it at all. The story follows Mara adapting to new life as she slowly uncovers what happened that night and more is revealed about her character. While adjusting, she meets a boy named Noah Shaw who, on the surface is a player and arrogant teen but, in reality, has a connection to Mara that is remarkably unimaginable.

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