Review – The Archived by Victoria Schwab

Image result for the archivedTitle: The Archived

Author: Victoria Schwab

Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

Genres: Young Adult, Fantasy

Synopsis: Imagine a place where the dead rest on shelves like books.

Each body has a story to tell, a life seen in pictures only Librarians can read. The dead are called Histories, and the vast realm in which they rest is the Archive.

Da first brought Mackenzie Bishop here four years ago, when she was twelve years old, frightened but determined to prove herself. Now Da is dead, and Mac has grown into what he once was: a ruthless Keeper, tasked with stopping often violent Histories from waking up and getting out. Because of her job, she lies to the people she loves, and she knows fear for what it is: a useful tool for staying alive.

Being a Keeper isn’t just dangerous—it’s a constant reminder of those Mac has lost, Da’s death was hard enough, but now that her little brother is gone too, Mac starts to wonder about the boundary between living and dying, sleeping and waking. In the Archive, the dead must never be disturbed. And yet, someone is deliberately altering Histories, erasing essential chapters. Unless Mac can piece together what remains, the Archive itself may crumble and fall.

In this haunting, richly imagined novel, Victoria Schwab reveals the thin lines between past and present, love and pain, trust and deceit, unbearable loss and hard-won redemption.


“I’ve been thinking.”

“A dangerous pursuit.”

“Indeed.”

I LOVE THIS BOOK SO MUCH. It’s extremely well-written, gripping from page one, with an extraordinary uniqueness to it, as well as some fantastic characters, and a plot that will keep you hooked until the end, with constant twists and turns to keep your mind whirring.

I was so, so glad that I had the sequel on my hands because I picked that up straight away and I don’t know if I would have been able to survive if I hadn’t had it so close at hand.

It’s just so unique (I know I’ve said that already). This whole concept of a library of dead people, with keepers, and crews, and librarians and all of these secrets spiralling around at every corner. It’s thrilling! And I might even say a little scary at times (it’s not marked “horror” on Goodreads genres for no reason).

The characters were fabulous stuff. Mackenzie… I can relate somewhat, though generally I am a talkative person so I don’t know how long I’d last lying like that. Also, I might add, I’m a particularly awful liar.

Battling curiosity and torn between disguises of right and wrong, Mac is forced to make tough choices, and whether she should harness her feelings or let them guide her to forbidden quarters.

And by far my favourite character…. Guyliner, is the name. If you haven’t read the book it’s natural you have absolutely no idea what I am going on about, read the book and you will totally understand (and agree) with me.

Mackenzie and Wes, their friendship, aaaand… guys you’ve just got to read the book, trust me when I say, you will be surprised! Um, that’s enough hinting for now, yeah. And then there’s also Owen, and there is a lot of doubt. Trust me, a lot of doubt.

Definitely one of my favourite books of the year so far (well I haven’t read that many so far, so….)! Highly recommend it to lovers of YA fantasy. Stay tuned for my next review on the sequel (*fangirling alert*)!

Speak soon!

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Top 5 Tuesday – Top 5 Series I Want to Start This Year

Hey guys!

Today I’m taking part in Top 5 Tuesday created by Shanah from the Bionic Bookworm!

Although I’m already knee-deep in a load of other series/trilogies/duologies:

  • Six of Crows Duology (I’m on Crooked Kingdom – second book)
  • Grisha Verse trilogy (I’m on Siege and Storm – second book)
  • The Lunar Chronicles (I’m on Cress – third book)
  • The Raven Cycle (I’m on Blue, Lily, Blue – third book)

(I hope that’s all of it, but I’m not sure!)

…I of course want to explore a load more! The more the merrier, right? However, I can’t guarantee I will end up reading the rest of the series of these books, because I may not like the first book enough to want to read the rest.

Blood Song  (Raven’s Shadow #1) by Anthony Ryan

Image result for blood songTitle: Blood Song

Author: Anthony Ryan

Series: Raven’s Shadow

Genres: Young Adult, Epic Fantasy

Synopsis: “The Sixth Order wields the sword of justice and smites the enemies of the Faith and the Realm.”

Vaelin Al Sorna was only a child of ten when his father left him at the iron gate of the Sixth Order. The Brothers of the Sixth Order are devoted to battle, and Vaelin will be trained and hardened to the austere, celibate, and dangerous life of a Warrior of the Faith. He has no family now save the Order.

Vaelin’s father was Battle Lord to King Janus, ruler of the unified realm. Vaelin’s rage at being deprived of his birthright and dropped at the doorstep of the Sixth Order like a foundling knows no bounds. He cherishes the memory of his mother, and what he will come to learn of her at the Order will confound him. His father, too, has motives that Vaelin will come to understand. But one truth overpowers all the rest: Vaelin Al Sorna is destined for a future he has yet to comprehend. A future that will alter not only the realm, but the world.

The Lies of Locke Lamora (Gentleman Bastard #1) by Scott Lynch

Image result for the lies of locke lamoraTitle: The Lies of Locke Lamora

Author: Scott Lynch

Series: Gentleman Bastard

Genres: Young Adult, Fantasy

Synopsis: In this stunning debut, author Scott Lynch delivers the wonderfully thrilling tale of an audacious criminal and his band of confidence tricksters. Set in a fantastic city pulsing with the lives of decadent nobles and daring thieves, here is a story of adventure, loyalty, and survival that is one part “Robin Hood”, one part Ocean’s Eleven, and entirely enthralling…

An orphan’s life is harsh — and often short — in the island city of Camorr, built on the ruins of a mysterious alien race. But born with a quick wit and a gift for thieving, Locke Lamora has dodged both death and slavery, only to fall into the hands of an eyeless priest known as Chains — a man who is neither blind nor a priest.

A con artist of extraordinary talent, Chains passes his skills on to his carefully selected “family” of orphans — a group known as the Gentlemen Bastards. Under his tutelage, Locke grows to lead the Bastards, delightedly pulling off one outrageous confidence game after another. Soon he is infamous as the Thorn of Camorr, and no wealthy noble is safe from his sting.

Passing themselves off as petty thieves, the brilliant Locke and his tightly knit band of light-fingered brothers have fooled even the criminal underworld’s most feared ruler, Capa Barsavi. But there is someone in the shadows more powerful — and more ambitious — than Locke has yet imagined.

Known as the Gray King, he is slowly killing Capa Barsavi’s most trusted men — and using Locke as a pawn in his plot to take control of Camorr’s underworld. With a bloody coup under way threatening to destroy everyone and everything that holds meaning in his mercenary life, Locke vows to beat the Gray King at his own brutal game — or die trying…

Red Rising (Red Rising #1) by Pierce Brown

Image result for red rising

Title: Red Rising

Author: Pierce Brown

Series: Red Rising Saga

Genres: Young Adult, Sci-Fi

Synopsis:  “I live for the dream that my children will be born free,” she says. “That they will be what they like. That they will own the land their father gave them.”

I live for you,” I say sadly.

Eo kisses my cheek. “Then you must live for more.”

Darrow is a Red, a member of the lowest caste in the color-coded society of the future. Like his fellow Reds, he works all day, believing that he and his people are making the surface of Mars livable for future generations.

Yet he spends his life willingly, knowing that his blood and sweat will one day result in a better world for his children.

But Darrow and his kind have been betrayed. Soon he discovers that humanity already reached the surface generations ago. Vast cities and sprawling parks spread across the planet. Darrow—and Reds like him—are nothing more than slaves to a decadent ruling class.

Inspired by a longing for justice, and driven by the memory of lost love, Darrow sacrifices everything to infiltrate the legendary Institute, a proving ground for the dominant Gold caste, where the next generation of humanity’s overlords struggle for power. He will be forced to compete for his life and the very future of civilization against the best and most brutal of Society’s ruling class. There, he will stop at nothing to bring down his enemies… even if it means he has to become one of them to do so.

The Queen’s Poisoner (Kingfountain #1) by Jeff Wheeler

Image result for the queen's poisonerTitle: The Queen’s Poisoner

Author: Jeff Wheeler

Series: Kingfountain

Genres: Young Adult, Fantasy

Synopsis: King Severn Argentine’s fearsome reputation precedes him: usurper of the throne, killer of rightful heirs, ruthless punisher of traitors. Attempting to depose him, the Duke of Kiskaddon gambles…and loses. Now the duke must atone by handing over his young son, Owen, as the king’s hostage. And should his loyalty falter again, the boy will pay with his life.

Seeking allies and eluding Severn’s spies, Owen learns to survive in the court of Kingfountain. But when new evidence of his father’s betrayal threatens to seal his fate, Owen must win the vengeful king’s favor by proving his worth—through extraordinary means. And only one person can aid his desperate cause: a mysterious woman, dwelling in secrecy, who truly wields power over life, death, and destiny.

The Crown Conspiracy (The Ryria Revelations #1) by Michael J. Sullivan 

Image result for the crown conspiracyTitle: The Crown Conspiracy

Author: Michael J. Sullivan

Series: The Ryria Revelations

Genres: Young Adult, Fantasy

Synopsis: THEY KILLED THE KING. THEY PINNED IT ON TWO MEN. THEY CHOSE POORLY.

The Crown Conspiracy is book one of the multi-book saga: The Riyria Revelations. The series is told through six novels conceived as a single epic tale. Across the entire chronicle, mysteries build, characters evolve, and plots thicken, but each is self-contained and can be read independent of one another.

In the first episode, the reader is introduced to Royce Melborn, a skilled thief, and his mercenary partner, Hadrian Blackwater, who make a profitable living carrying out dangerous assignments for conspiring nobles until they become the unwitting scapegoats in the murder of the king. Sentenced to death, they have only one way out…and so begins this epic tale of treachery and adventure, sword fighting and magic, myth and legend.


As you can see, I’m really going to delve into the fantasy genre! Have you read any of these books, and what did you think of them? Would you recommend them, or do you think that I should rethink wanting to read them?

Speak to you all soon!

My Personal Experience with Writing!

Hey guys!

I’ve had this blog for around 3 months now, and the only indication you get that I write for pleasure are a couple of references on my posts, the single poem I published and of course, the sub-header.

This post is going to be a sort of introduction to my personal experience with writing.

What got me into writing?

I feel like I have always loved storytelling, and my love of writing is definitely a huge part of that. When I was nine, we started writing a lot more stories at school, and that was when I started scribbling adventures down in my notebook. They weren’t anything spectacular (to be honest, at times I was more into the curves of my handwriting!), just little scenes from stories developing at the ends of my imagination. But it was still something.

When I was twelve years old I started this English course, and there was a lot of story writing involved. I had always loved reading (find more about that here), but hated writing, only associating it with tasks at school and aching hands.

It was this course that my love of writing really bloomed. I love creating my own worlds and characters, and doing anything I want with them. I love the feeling of having a whole world at your fingertips just as you begin to touch the keyboard. I love and loathe the loneliness of a blank document, and relish the tingling urge to fill it with wonderful places, people and plots.

What inspires me to write?

I would get inspired (and still am!) from the books I read, and hence the fifty unfinished stories that are held in various notebooks in my drawers and folders on my desktop. Nowadays it’s all I can do to force myself not to write something similar to the amazing book I had just read.

I can now understand the writers of all the fan-fiction out there. I tried writing fan-fiction before, but I ended up stressing too much about if whether that was what the characters would really do and how I didn’t want to spoil them for myself, so I stopped.

~ My Current Journey with Writing ~

When I was thirteen I opened up a blank blue notebook I had bought, felt like writing about a murder story, and just began – just like that!  This eventually turned into my first big project, and the pages went to fifty, and then a hundred, and then a hundred and fifty, my excitement growing with the turn of each page, because it was the first time I had even gone past twenty pages like this.

And thus, I learned the lesson of quality over quantity. Of course, I had already heard of that phrase. My mother kept reminding me of this as I kept sharing the progress of my story, but if you know me well, you know I tend to learn things the hard way. 

My interest in it dropped, and then I came back to the story a year later, and found it too childish for my current tastes. At first I re-wrote it and tried to expand on the story, but I simply could not. So I stopped.

I read and read and read. I began unfinished story after unfinished story, never really finding anything I felt enthusiastic enough about to continue past the twenty page milestone. Then when I was looking through my unfinished stories, I came across these diary entries about a princess, and I really liked what I had written so far, so began writing some more.

I began brainstorming more and more about the story, the setting, the characters in my notebook, and writing more and more. I became more inspired with the beginning of each page and chapter. By the previous summer holidays, I was setting an alarm for 8am, and would get up and type away at my laptop. I reached 200 pages.

I was stumbling across huge plot holes, and eventually realised, writing YA fantasy really wasn’t for me. At least, not yet. It was extremely difficult to admit, and even more painful to give up, but I knew I wasn’t experienced enough as a person or a writer to be able to accomplish such a feat. I would keep reading and scheming, and maybe I’d come back to it, maybe I wouldn’t.

And now, I have reached my third major project in my writing journey. I gave up my YA fantasy manuscript in September, and since then, I flourished in my poetry, while all the while at the back of my mind, I was plotting for my next project. In October, I began writing bios for my character, and a brief outline for my plot.

In January, now, I have a good idea of where I want to take the story and what my characters are going to be. I have a vague plan of the ending. I have written about thirty pages in total, and I’m still going!

One thing that is essential with writing, and that is perseverance. I’m telling you, writing a book is no easy thing! All authors, you should be incredibly proud of yourselves. Even if people didn’t like your book, it doesn’t matter. What matters is that you created a world and characters and plot that you loved, and managed to get to the ending in one piece 🙂 


What has your experience with writing been? What did you think of mine?

Do you want more writing posts like this? Be sure to let me know!

Speak to you all soon!

Change of Plans!

“Unfortunately, I will be taking a five months break from blogging while I prepare for my exams in May.” …exactly 10 days later…

Hey guys!

As you can see, there is a change of plans. I’ve decided that I love blogging so much that five months is just too long. Seriously. I read The Archived and The Unbound and it took every ounce of my self control not to jump onto here and write up a review for you guys. So, despite upcoming exams, I’m going to be uploading a post once a week, as usual. 

If things do happen to lag a bit though, I trust you guys will understand that it’s a somewhat busy time of the year for me, and that I will make up for it once these dreaded exams are finally over.

However…

I will not be responding to author’s requests to read their book until after my exams, at the end of May, because it takes a lot of time that I can’t afford right now – I still need to set up an email for the blog (it’s currently my personal email) and a Netgalley account. I hope you understand 🙂

If you are an author and you are interested in me reviewing a book for you: Please, still, do not hesitate to contact me! I am keeping track of all of the many emails I am receiving (thank you!), and will respond once my exams are up 🙂

Speak to you all soon!

Five Months Break from the Blog

Hi guys!

Unfortunately, I will be taking a five months break from blogging while I prepare for my exams in May. After my exams, I will come back, and pick up the blog like normal, but probably posting a lot more often to make up for my absence.

If you are an author looking for a book you want me to review and you like the way my reviews are laid out, please do not hesitate to contact me, as although I may not respond until after my exams, I am keeping track of these emails and will respond to them afterwards. Until then, feel free to check out my book review policy 🙂

If you are a blogger that likes the way my blog is, my previous reviews and posts, then please don’t hesitate to still ‘follow’ as everything will pick up as usual  once I get back 🙂 Until then, feel free to check out my review index!

I will be keeping track of the books I read, and I may write separate reviews for them all when I come back (it depends how many books I end up ploughing through!) or I might make a recap post summing each book up in a couple of sentences. Otherwise, feel free to check out my Goodreads as you can still see my readings and ratings on there, though I won’t be reviewing 🙂

Thanks for understanding, and I’ll speak to you all very soon!

 

2018 Bookish Resolutions

Happy New Year, everyone! What were you all doing when it officially turned 00:00 on the 1st January?! I was watching the clock 😉

We should totally celebrate since we managed to live through 2017, which has been a crazy year in so many different ways. Congratulations, you should be very proud of yourself. 

Since I’m new to the blogging world, having just started in October 2017, this is the first time I’m making bookish resolutions for the new year, or, as called in Weezie’s post, 2018 Bookolutions! It was actually her post that inspired this one, so thank you, Weezie 🙂

So here are my resolutions for 2018! 

  • Read 70-100 books. Despite having some major exams this year, I am going to attempt to read 100 books this year. However, I’m not really going to sweat about it. If I don’t make it, it’s cool. Although I didn’t really count last year’s books, I think I read around a hundred anyway.
  • Start reviewing books by request. Already I’ve had quite a few requests from authors to read their books, thank you so much 🙂 I will definitely get onto doing that and responding to those emails!

What are your bookish resolutions for 2018?! Please share

Speak soon!

December Wrap-Up

Helloooo!

2017 is over already. Can you believe it? I’m still recovering from the shock, slowly but surely. There were so many things I wanted to read this year, and I remember freaking out around mid-September over all of the mounds of books that I had yet to devour.

See my December TBR. This month has been a glorious reading month! Definitely some all-time favourites here!

The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins

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Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

See my review for it here

Catching Fire by Suzanne Collins

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Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

Mockingjay by Suzanne Collins

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Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

Shadow and Bone by Leigh Bardugo

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Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

See my review for it here

The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater

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Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

See my review for it here

A Voice by Umm Zakiyyah

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Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

This is the second book in the If I Should Speak series. Reviews for the first book and this one coming soon.

Scarlet by Marissa Meyer

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Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

See review for it here

The Dream Thieves by Maggie Stiefvater

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Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

Review coming soon!


I’d like to thank you for reading my blog and taking your time to scroll through my post(s)! I’m new to the blogging world, I just started in October, and so far it’s been really great 🙂

It’s December 31st today, and tomorrow will be the start of a fresh year, a new slate, lovely new months stretching out ahead of us. It’s exciting, scary… exciting!

What are your bookish new resolutions?

Speak to you all very soon!