Sunday, 19 August 2018

Review - The City of Brass (The Daevabad Trilogy, #1) by S.A. Chakraborty





Title: The City of Brass (The Daevabad Trilogy, #1)
Author: S.A. Chakraborty
Pages: 544
Publisher: Harper Voyager
Release Date: 14th November 2017

Blurb from Goodreads: 


Among the bustling markets of eighteenth century Cairo, the city’s outcasts eke out a living swindling rich Ottoman nobles and foreign invaders alike.

But alongside this new world the old stories linger. Tales of djinn and spirits. Of cities hidden among the swirling sands of the desert, full of enchantment, desire and riches. Where magic pours down every street, hanging in the air like dust.

Many wish their lives could be filled with such wonder, but not Nahri. She knows the trades she uses to get by are just tricks and sleights of hand: there’s nothing magical about them. She only wishes to one day leave Cairo, but as the saying goes…

Be careful what you wish for.












My Review:

*I received an ARC of this book in exchange for an honest review. Thanks to HarperCollins UK, HarperFiction and NetGalley*




Nahri lives in Cairo. With no family, she uses her wits and gift of healing to get by as a con artist. Nahri dreams of the day she will have enough money to leave Cairo.
Everything changes when Nahri unwittingly finds herself drawn into a world of magic, djinn and powerful beings.
Will Nahri survive unscathed?


I was wary going into The City of Brass that I wouldn't like it - it's popular and rather long.
However, I'm relieved to say that I did enjoy it. Very much.
I really liked the characters in this. They all had their flaws but that made them all the more relatable and believable. Nahri was witty and wily. Dara had a dark past but I loved every conversation with him in it. I liked Ali too. I felt sorry for him - he was trying to help his people but things didn't go very well for him.
The plot was interesting and held my attention.
I really liked the romance. While it happened slightly faster than I would like, I could feel the spark.
The writing style was easy to follow and I found the world that the author has created really interesting. However, there were a lot of terms introduced at once and I was a bit confused for a while.
I definitely want to read the sequel.


Overall this was an enjoyable read that I would recommend.







Saturday, 18 August 2018

My Most Anticipated Upcoming 2018 Reads




There are lots of books still to come out this year.

Here are some of my most anticipated reads for the rest of 2018...





Mirage by Somaiya Daud
August 2018


The crown of Dihya had been stripped from me, my face changed, my body broken.
But I was not a slave and I was not a spare.
I was my mother's daughter, and I would survive and endure. I would find my way back home.


In a star system dominated by the brutal Vathek empire, eighteen-year-old Amani is a dreamer. She dreams of what life was like before the occupation, and of receiving a sign from Dihya that one day, she, too, will have adventures, and travel beyond her isolated moon.

But when adventure comes for Amani, it is not what she expects: she is kidnapped and taken in secret to the royal palace, where she discovers that she is nearly identical to the cruel half-Vathek Princess Maram. The princess is so hated by her conquered people that she requires a body double to appear in public, ready to die in her place.

As Amani is forced into her new role, she can’t help but enjoy the palace’s beauty—and her time with the princess’ fiancé, Idris. But the glitter of the royal court belies a world of violence and fear and if Amani ever wishes to see her family again, she must play the princess to perfection... because one wrong move could lead to her death.


 








Toil & Trouble: 15 Tales of Women and Witchcraft
Edited by Jessica Spotswood and Tess Sharpe
August 2018


A young adult fiction anthology of 15 stories featuring contemporary, historical, and futuristic stories featuring witchy heroines who are diverse in race, class, sexuality, religion, geography, and era.

Are you a good witch or a bad witch?

Glinda the Good Witch. Elphaba the Wicked Witch. Willow. Sabrina. Gemma Doyle. The Mayfair Witches. Ursula the Sea Witch. Morgan le Fey. The three weird sisters from Macbeth.

History tells us women accused of witchcraft were often outsiders: educated, independent, unmarried, unwilling to fall in line with traditional societal expectations.

Bold. Powerful. Rebellious.

A bruja’s traditional love spell has unexpected results. A witch’s
healing hands begin to take life instead of giving it when she ignores her attraction to a fellow witch. In a terrifying future, women are captured by a cabal of men crying witchcraft and the one true witch among them must fight to free them all. In a desolate past, three orphaned sisters prophesize for a murderous king. Somewhere in the present, a teen girl just wants to kiss a boy without causing a hurricane.

From good witches to bad witches, to witches who are a
bit of both, this is an anthology of diverse witchy tales from a
collection of diverse, feminist authors. The collective strength of
women working together—magically or mundanely--has long frightened society, to the point that women’s rights are challenged, legislated against, and denied all over the world. Toil & Trouble delves deep into the truly diverse mythology of witchcraft from many cultures and feminist points of view, to create modern and unique tales of witchery that have yet to be explored.










Sadie by Courtney Summers
September 2018


A missing girl on a journey of revenge and a Serial-like podcast following the clues she's left behind.

Sadie hasn't had an easy life. Growing up on her own, she's been raising her sister Mattie in an isolated small town, trying her best to provide a normal life and keep their heads above water.

But when Mattie is found dead, Sadie's entire world crumbles. After a somewhat botched police investigation, Sadie is determined to bring her sister's killer to justice and hits the road following a few meager clues to find him.

When West McCray—a radio personality working on a segment about small, forgotten towns in America—overhears Sadie's story at a local gas station, he becomes obsessed with finding the missing girl. He starts his own podcast as he tracks Sadie's journey, trying to figure out what happened, hoping to find her before it's too late.

Courtney Summers has written the breakout book of her career. Sadie is propulsive and harrowing and will keep you riveted until the last page.












The Sisters of the Winter Wood by Rena Rossner
September 2018



Raised in a small village surrounded by vast forests, Liba and Laya have lived a peaceful sheltered life - even if they've heard of troubling times for Jews elsewhere. When their parents travel to visit their dying grandfather, the sisters are left behind in their home in the woods.

But before they leave, Liba discovers the secret that their Tati can transform into a bear, and their Mami into a swan. Perhaps, Liba realizes, the old fairy tales are true. She must guard this secret carefully, even from her beloved sister.

Soon a troupe of mysterious men appear in town and Laya falls under their spell-despite their mother's warning to be wary of strangers. And these are not the only dangers lurking in the woods...

The sisters will need each other if they are to become the women they need to be - and save their people from the dark forces that draw closer.













Not Even Bones by Rebecca Schaeffer
September 2018


Nita doesn’t murder supernatural beings and sell their body parts on the internet—her mother does that. Nita just dissects the bodies after they’ve been “acquired.” Then her mom brings home a living specimen, and Nita decides she wants out. But there’s a problem: Nita herself is supernatural being and a prime target for the black market if anyone ever found out. When Nita decides to help her mother's latest victim escape, she ends up taking his place instead. Nita did a good deed, and it cost her everything. Now she needs to escape and make sure no one can ever sell her again. And to do that, there’s no line Nita won’t cross.














What If It's Us by Becky Albertalli and Adam Silvera
October 2018 



Arthur is only in New York for the summer, but if Broadway has taught him anything, it’s that the universe can deliver a showstopping romance when you least expect it.

Ben thinks the universe needs to mind its business. If the
universe had his back, he wouldn’t be on his way to the post office
carrying a box of his ex-boyfriend’s things.

But when Arthur and Ben meet-cute at the post office, what exactly does the universe have in store for them?

Maybe nothing. After all, they get separated.

Maybe everything. After all, they get reunited.

But what if they can’t quite nail a first date . . . or a second first date . . . or a third?

What if Arthur tries too hard to make it work . . . and Ben doesn’t try hard enough?

What if life really isn’t like a Broadway play?

But what if it is?


















Beneath the Citadel by Destiny Soria
October 2018



In the city of Eldra, people are ruled by ancient prophecies. For centuries, the high council has stayed in power by virtue of the prophecies of the elder seers. After the last infallible prophecy came to pass, growing unrest led to murders and an eventual rebellion that raged for more than a decade.
 


In the present day, Cassa, the orphaned daughter of rebels, is determined to fight back against the high council, which governs Eldra from behind the walls of the citadel. Her only allies are no-nonsense Alys, easygoing Evander, and perpetually underestimated Newt, and Cassa struggles to come to terms with the legacy of rebellion her dead parents have left her — and the fear that she may be inadequate to shoulder the burden. But by the time Cassa and her friends uncover the mystery of the final infallible prophecy, it may be too late to save the city — or themselves.
 














Bridge of Clay by Markus Zusak
October 2018




Here is a story told inside out and back to front: The five Dunbar brothers are living with their menagerie of animals in the perfect chaos of a house without grownups. Today, the father who walked out on them long ago is about to walk right back in.

And so the life of Clay, the quiet one with a harrowing secret, is about to change forever.

From a grandfather, whose passion for the ancient Greeks still lights up their lives, to a mother and father who fell in love over a mislaid piano, to the present day, where five sons co-exist in a house with no rules, Bridge Of Clay is an sweeping portrait of how a ramshacklefamily, held together by stories and by love, come to unbury one boy’s tragic secret.

This tale of a young life caught in a current - a life in search of greatness and the cure for a painful past - is as intense, inspiring and ambitious as only Markus Zusak can be.
 














Girls of Paper and Fire by Natasha Ngan
November 2018



Each year, eight beautiful girls are chosen as Paper Girls to serve the king. It's the highest honour they could hope for...and the most demeaning. This year, there's a ninth. And instead of paper, she's made of fire.
 
Lei is a member of the Paper caste, the lowest and most persecuted class of people in Ikhara. Ten years ago, her mother was snatched by the royal guards, and her fate remains unknown. Now, the guards are back and this time it's Lei they're after - the girl with the golden eyes, whose rumored beauty has piqued the king's interest.

Over weeks of training in the opulent but oppressive palace, Lei and eight other girls learns the skills and charm that befit a king's consort. There, Lei does the unthinkable - she falls in love. Her forbidden romance becomes enmeshed with an explosive plot that threatens her world's entire way of life. Lei, still the wide-eyed country girl at heart, must decide how far she's willing to go for justice and revenge.


Goodreads

 




What books are you looking forward to?






Thursday, 16 August 2018

Blog Tour + Guest Post + Giveaway - Harbinger (Dragonrider Legacy #2) by Nicole Conway


Find the tour schedule here.




Harbinger (Dragonrider Legacy #2)
by Nicole Conway
Publisher:  Month9Books
Publication Date:  August 14, 2018

Victory is written in the blood of the brave. As the armies of the Tibran Empire continue to march across Maldobar, a path of scorched destruction and despair is left in their wake. Even with the formidable princess, Jenna Farrow, leading the charge, the strength of the dragonriders is waning. Tibran victory appears inevitable—especially after Princess Jenna and Prince Aubren are taken hostage by the infamous Lord Argonox. Separated from her brother and tortured for information, Princess Jenna refuses to bend to the iron will of Argonox. But her strength and resolve may only last so long. Held prisoner in his dark tower, it would take a miracle to set her free—or perhaps a pair of demigods and their dragons. With revived dragonrider legend, Jaevid Broadfeather, at his side, Reigh must now make a choice: face the truth about the origin of his dark powers, or turn his back on world in need. But throwing off a lifetime of shame and self-doubt is not so easily done—especially when the cost of failure means the destruction of the world. The long-awaited hero has awakened. The ancient spirits are stirring. The dark goddess has chosen her champion. But is he ready to embrace that rite and become the HARBINGER Maldobar needs him to be?







Purchase Links:


B&N | Kobo | TBD | iBooks 









 
PRINCESS JENNA FARROW – Character Discussion


I don’t usually hit it off with female narrators – reading or writing them. In fact, in the past, I have dutifully avoided writing from the perspective of a female narrator because I just find it uncomfortable. Why? I’m honestly not sure. But that wasn’t the case for Jenna. From the start, she was comfortable. She felt real. I really hope readers will come to like her as much as I did.

Jenna is strong. She’s fierce, brave, and takes her dragonrider oath very seriously. But she’s still a woman—so I had to find a way to convey her strength without compromising her humanity or her femininity. She’s a little rough around the edges because she’s spent most of her life surrounded by men after losing her mother at a young, formative age. She’s more comfortable in pants than skirts because she wants to dress for functionality not fashion. She struggles with anxiety and self-doubt. She’s in denial about falling in love everyone expects her to. She has a temper, but a deeply empathetic heart. She loves her family fiercely and would give anything for them. After getting to know her, for me, I began to agree more and more with Felix’s choice to make her queen over Aubren.







About the Author
  




Nicole is the author of the children’s fantasy series, THE DRAGONRIDER CHRONICLES, about a young boy’s journey into manhood as he trains to become a dragonrider. She has completed the first two books in the series, and is now working on the third and final book.  Other works include MAD MAGIC (Sept 2017), FAULBENDER (tbd), SCALES (tbd), and THE DISTANCE BETWEEN STARS (May 2017).

Originally from a small town in North Alabama, Nicole moves frequently due to her husband’s career as a pilot for the United States Air Force. She received a B.A. in English with a concentration in Classics from Auburn University, and will soon attend graduate school.

She has previously worked as a freelance and graphic artist for promotional companies, but has now embraced writing as a full-time occupation.

Nicole enjoys hiking, camping, shopping, cooking, and spending time with her family and friends. She also loves watching children’s movies and collecting books. She lives at home with her husband, two cats, and dog.



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