Review: Zenith

NER REVIEWS (zenith)

Author(s): Sasha Alsberg & Lindsay Cummings
Release Date: June 21st, 2016
Publisher: Mirabel Inc.
Pages: 62 (epub)
Format: epub
Genre:
 YA | Sci-Fi | Fantasy
Idiom: English
Series: The Androma Saga #1
Read: June 1, 2016
Source & Shelf: Kindle App | Kindle
ISBN: 9781311167606

Cups:
3,5 Cups
GoodreadsKoboAmazon

Synopsis

#1 NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER

There is darkness sweeping across the stars.

Most know Androma Racella as the Bloody Baroness: a powerful mercenary whose reign of terror stretches across the Mirabel Galaxy. To those aboard her fearsome glass starship the Maurader, she’s just Andi, their captain and protector.

When a routine mission goes awry, the all-girl crew’s resilience is tested as they find themselves in a most unfamiliar place: at the mercy of a sadistic bounty hunter connected to Andi’s past and a harrowing betrayal.

Meanwhile, on the far side of the galaxy, a ruthless ruler waits in the shadows of the planet Xen Ptera, biding her time to exact revenge for the destruction of her people. The final pieces of her deadly plan are about to fall into place, unleashing a plot that will tear Mirabel in two.

Andi and her crew embark on a dangerous, soul-testing journey that could restore order to their ship—or just as easily start a war that will devour worlds. As the Marauder hurtles towards the unknown, and Mirabel hangs in the balance, the only thing certain is that in a galaxy run on lies and illusion, no one can be trusted.

From internet sensation Sasha Alsberg and author Lindsay Cummings comes a new serialized space opera, full of action, fantastical intrigue, and steamy star-crossed romance.

For fans of popular sci-fi books and fantasy books for teens such as Illuminae by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff, Wool by Hugh Howey, Truthwitch by Susan Dennard, and A Court of Thorns and Roses by Sarah J. Maas.

My Opinion

Disclaimer: I wrote this review before the news of Sasha’s and Lindsay’s announcement concerning the future of Zenith – the book is going to be published through Harlequin Teen in 2017. In the meantime, congratulations to both 🙂 

As a fan of Sasha Alsberg‘s BookTube channel, abookutopia, I had to get my hands on her debut book alongside friend Lindsay Cummings (also the author of The Murder Complex). And, let me tell you, this was an amazing book. But it was so short… I mean, I want more.

For those who don’t know, Zenith is a serialised book series, meaning that the authors will be publishing the book in individual parts. And this first part was an amazing kick-off for what I can already see as a kick-ass series. 

Zenith is about Androma, or Andi, and her all-female crew who are space pirates. Yes, you read that right, space pirates. They are travelling space in their ship the Marauder until they are on their way to a mission but get caught.

Andi was such a kick-ass character to meet. She’s also called the Bloody Baroness and the name really suits her – she is deadly. I am really looking forward to know more about her past, to know her better and to simply continue exploring this character that has the potential to be one of the best female characters in YA. Sure, there is a Celaena Sardothian vibe to her but I managed to skip that and enjoy Andi.

The rest of the girls were also kick-ass characters but as of right now, because of how short this was and was mostly centred on Andi, I didn’t connect with them. But I’m positive that with the rest of the series we might get to know them better and deeper.

There were perhaps a little bit information to construct the background information of the story that let me slightly confused. The world building was, I felt, thrown at us as if we were expected to already know it. However, since this was so short, I’m expecting to get the opportunity to know more about the galaxies.

I admit being super curious about Valen and Nor. These two characters were really mysterious and there wasn’t that many information about them. And I admit that there was very little of Valen, I can see him as a potential favourite character of mine in this series.

I have to admit that even though I truly enjoyed this book, I also feel it was too short for me to be able to review it properly. It was a nice introduction to this saga I give you that, but trying to review just half of a story doesn’t actually feel right. Still, for a 62 pages book, it was actually good.

The writing was easy and had some beautiful sentences. The only negative point is what I already mentioned about the world building.

Overall, Zenith was a short and sweet debut for Sasha and a nice introduction to this new YA series. I will definitely be looking forward for the continuation of this saga and hopefully, as it builds up more plot, it’ll introduce us to a lot more kick-ass moments.

Ner

Monthly Wrap-Up | July

Wrap-Up

August is here!! How on freaking hell is it August already? Though I felt that July was the slowest month to pass, I still cannot believe it’s August! And I still need to go to the beach!

And I’m sorry this post is super late. I had a quite busy last week of July and first week of August but now I’m back!!

Anyway, this last month I had a pretty quite interesting month when it comes to books! I’ve read four out of the six books I had planned to read and added a special one in the mix because… well, you’ll see! But I’m quite pleased with how July was a reading month and I have high expectations for August. In the meantime, take a look at the books I read last month:

Wrap-Up | July

  • Zenith [The Androma Saga #1] – Sasha Alsberg & Lindsay Cummings (3,5/5 cups) GR | Amazon
    • I quite enjoyed this one but I thought it was indeed too short! I think that if Sasha and Lindsay had waited a little bit longer and had released this book with a story that had a beginning, middle and end, it would have been amazing. But, still, I quite liked it and will be waiting for more parts to be released;-);
  • Tower of Thorns (A Torre de Espinhos -PT Edition) [Blckthorn and Grimm #1] – Juliet Marillier (4/5 cups – no review) GR | TBD
    • Even though I LOVE Juliet, this isn’t my favourite series of hers. Still, I enjoyed this one much more than the first book and I’ve also realised that I can’t write a proper review for her books. Why? Because my love for Juliet normally blinds me to the negative aspects of her stories – yes, she also has flaws; she’s human – and I always end up writing a review that mainly says ALL the good things about her books. And I think that’s not fair!;
  • And I Darken [The Conquerors Saga #1] – Kiersten White (4/5 cups) GR | TBD
    • I still don’t know what I feel about this book. I really liked it but there is something I can’t put my finger on! I mean, it’s an amazing book but I can’t still give it a proper rating! I’m giving it 3,5 cups but I can’t write my review for now… gonna wait a while before trying to review it!;
  • Harry Potter and the Cursed Child [Harry Potter #8] – J.K. Rowling & Jack Thorne & John Tiffany (4/5 cups – no review) – GR | TBD
    • OMG!! THE FEELS!!!!! I can’t control my emotions guys, you have no idea!! I read this book in one day – ONE WHOLE DAY!!I bought it and then read it in one sitting and that never happened before. And even though the book has its flaws and it was a weird HP reading experience – because it is the script of the play and not a novel – I enjoyed the book and the plot. Many people didn’t like the whole twist and turn and everything but I did. I liked how we managed to not only see our favourite trio as adults but also meet Scorpius and Albus and still be connected to the whole Voldemort plot – though I do admit some things felt slightly far-fetched even for Harry Potter. But, overall, having the opportunity to read this, to have one more story set in the HP universe was so well worth it. Even if it felt like a weird fan-fic, it was worth it and I’m sure as a play, it’ll be amazing!! Now I can only  waiting for a live DVD of the play or a movie because I know I won’t be able to actually see the play! 
  • Clockwork Angel [The Infernal Devices #1] – Cassandra Clare (4/5 cups – review to come) – GRTBD
    • Now I get why everyone loves TID! I admit it… it’s prety awesome! I loved meeting all these new characters and being able to connect it back to TMI and I adore Charlotte and Henry!! As for the main trio – I’m super curious about Will’s past because there’s a lot more going on, Jem is super sweet and I love him, and as for Tessa, I was hoping to be blown away by her character but so far she was only okay. I mean, I liked her but I’m hoping for much more from her in the upcoming books. Also, I loved that Magnus appears in this book because I freaking love him (and that bit about his favourite combination being black hair and blue eyes – MALEC ALERT!!! *swoon*);

And that’s a wrap!!!

Ner

Blog Tour Stop: Guest Post + Excerpt: Zaria Fierce and the Dragon Keeper’s Golden Shoes by Keira Gillett (+ Giveaway)

Blog Tour Stop:
Guest Post + Excerpt + Giveaway

Zaria Fierce and the Dragon Keeper’s Golden Shoes

Hi guys! Today I’m bringing you a stop for Keira Gillett‘s Blog Tour for Zaria Fierce and the Dragon Keeper’s Golden Shoes. If you don’t know, I’ve been following Keira’s adventure of Zaria and her friends throughout Norway and I love this trilogy. So when Keira asked me if I wanted to be part of this tour, I immediately accepted!

There’s a guest-post where Keira shares with us some fun facts about the third book in the Zaria Fierce series, an excerpt and a giveaway at the end – keep an eye out on that!

My review for the book can be read here if you want to know what I thought about this last adventure. To be honest, I just highly recommend you pick up these books if you like fantasy, Norwegian folklore (or would like to know), friendship, adventure and magic! And you can download the first book – Zaria Fierce and the Secret of Gloomwood Forest – on Kindle for FREE till August 9th. Go get your copy here (you won’t regret it, trust me :D)

Zaria3Author: Keira Gillett
Illustrator: Eoghan Kerrigan
Narrator (aubiobook): Michele Carpenter
Release Date: July 1st, 2016
Publisher: Keira Gillett
Pages: 300 (Kindle)
Format: 
Epub
Genre:
 MG | Fantasy | Adventure
Idiom: English
Series: Zaria Fierce #3
Get the Book:

atmbaddbook70x25Amazon

Synopsis

“Nothing can save you now, Princess.”

How can anyone be tricked twice? Isn’t there even a saying about that? Zaria Fierce is determined to get things right this time and with the Drakeland Sword in her possession she’s ready to take on trolls, dragons, and whatever else may come… but first she and her friends are going to have to figure out just how much trouble they’re in at home.

Praise for Zaria Fierce and the Dragon Keeper’s Golden Shoes (Book #3):

“That’s the great thing about the Zaria Fierce trilogy: adventure is fast, furious, and loaded with Norse mythology, but the friendship between Zaria and her group of friends is the heart that drives this story.” Rosemary, Mom Read It

“I think the Zaria Fierce series mixes together all the things that I love about reading fantasy books, there is a sense of good versus evil, strong friendships, dragons, gorgeous illustrations, a captivating world, a perfect middle-grade book for someone looking for an action packed story filled with Norse mythology.” – Brenda, Log Cabin Library

“Zaria Fierce and the Dragon Keeper’s Golden Shoes was a spectacular conclusion to a great trilogy (though the ending left the door open for more adventures). Filled with magic, a great story line, amazing and real characters, wonderful settings and beautifully explored themes, Keira Gillett created a trilogy that I will always cherish and will visit anytime. If you like The Chronicles of Narnia, The Hobbit, The Spiderwick Chronicles or simply love a book filled with Norwegian folklore and fantasy, then this is the ultimate series for you to read, devour and lose yourselves in.” – Ner, A Cup of Coffee and a Book (that’s me guys ^_^)

Guest Post:

10 Fun Facts About Zaria Fierce and the Dragon Keeper’s Shoes:

Good day everyone! My name is Keira Gillett and I’m so glad to be invited back to talk more about the Zaria Fierce Trilogy. Briefly, the trilogy is about a young girl who moves to Norway, meets a troll, and goes on a quest to save her friend. Ner’s asked me to share some facts with you about the final instalment, Zaria Fierce and the Dragon Keeper’s Golden Shoes. I hope you enjoy this behind the scenes look. Let’s dive in!

1. The first draft of Zaria Fierce and the Dragon Keeper’s Golden Shoes was completed in eight months on 2/5/2016. According to the document information I spent a total of 3 days 3 hours 3 minutes writing time on the book. How funny is that? I couldn’t have planned that. LOL;

2. The ending sequence in the epilogue is there purely because I have amazing beta readers who demanded more from me and the books than where I had originally left it. They wanted more and on reread I agreed, so I gave it to them. The final result? They were so right!! The book is so much better;

3. The Gjallarbrú Bridge in folklore is a covered bridge with a gold roof. If you’ve been to Lake Lucerne in Lucerne, Switzerland the bridge will feel familiar to you. Crossing the water is a beautiful covered bridge and it was my inspiration for the bridge in the book.

4. I wrote Hector’s scene down in the Under Realm before anything else in book three. About halfway through the book I jumped ahead again and wrote half of Zaria’s encounter with Koll. These scenes just demanded to be written and wouldn’t wait their turn!;

5. The palace grounds for the Under Realm are based on a real place, called Uranienborg Castle. The grounds are shaped like a quatrefoil, which coincidentally is also one of my sorority’s symbols. It’s super fancy looking with four circles and a large central diamond. It was a no-brainer to add it into the books;

6. I’ve actually tried cloudberry preserves. The description Zaria applies to them in the book is exactly how I think they taste. I’m glad I didn’t go with the flavors others were ascribing to them on the web, because I didn’t think it tasted that way at all. Of course, maybe that’s the difference between eating them fresh in the field and eating a preserve. I found that they’re very mild for a berry. I’m also told that it’s great served warm on vanilla ice cream. Have you tried it?

7. My dog Oskar was a big help although we both didn’t know it at the time. His behavior and personality inspired pint-sized Vingar’s behavior and personality. If you knew my dog, you would agree. I saw it clearly during the edits and added a few more antics to seal the deal. He’s a cheeky fellow – playful and mischievous.

8. 16 gorgeous illustrations are in the third book, just like the first two books. Eoghan actually did 18 drawings, two each of Granny and Hector. I thought all four drawings were great! I had a tough time choosing the version for each character that would be in the book. The Granny I picked reminds me of my cousin’s grandma with her apple cheeks and sweet smile. I absolutely adore them both.

9. Michele Carpenter is finishing her narration of the third book. I got to hear a preview with Granny. LOVED IT. Her voice is perfect and cracks me up every time I hear it;

10. Michele also told me she started a new process to keep track of all the voices she’s using for the series so she’d be able to draw upon them again quickly for this book and the next books in the series. I think that’s so cool, and yes, that does mean there are more books coming! Yay! The next books focus on Aleks Mickelsen, but all our favorite characters will be back.

Thanks for having me! This was great! If you stick around there’s giveaway information at the end! One lucky person has a chance to win a Zaria Fierce audiobook package.

Thank you so much Keira. I loved knowing all these facts about book 3; it makes the reading experience far more interesting when knowing certain details about how the author wrote it. Am I right fellow readers?!

Also, the bridge in Lake Lucerne looks so beautiful – adding it to my endless list of places to visit. And your dog is the cutest; can I adopt him?! 😉

Excerpt:

Hector was right that the group wasn’t far from Malmdor. They reached the entrance before night fell, and in the gloomy dusk that slipped around them like a cloak, they reached the edge of the forest and stopped. Below them in a wide clearing was an abandoned quarry filled with water.

The lake was nestled at the bottom of a deep, steep pit. Its deep blue water was smooth and glassy, protected from wind by the rocky walls and surrounding forest. Zaria could see the lakebed in the shallower areas. Something large swam in the center, too deep to see clearly.

“What is that?” asked Filip, having spotted the creature at the same time.

Hector said, “It’s a water-wyvern.”

“Is that like the Loch Ness Monster?” asked Christoffer. “Cool. No wonder they can’t find it in Scotland.”

“You haven’t seen a winter-wyvern,” Zaria said. “I bet it’s more like Norwick.”

“The flying snow leopard-bear-bat thing you told me about? Even better,” Christoffer said, rubbing his hands together in glee. “Do we get to meet it?”

“Is it friendly?” worried Geirr.

“The beastie is not friendly,” said Hector, grimly. “And yes, we will be meeting it. Water-wyverns are wild, unpredictable creatures. This one is particularly nasty. It was captured and transported to this quarry lake over a century ago. It can’t escape – water-wyverns aren’t able to live out of water for very long. This makes it very angry. The lake is too small for him.”

“That’s what I was afraid of,” Geirr said, stuffing his hands into his pockets. “So, can it eat us?”

Hector nodded. “It once devoured an entire legion of dwarf handlers because they smelled bad. They’ve showered regularly ever since.”

Geirr looked at Zaria. “Why?” he moaned. “Why do we have to meet it?”

“Look on the bright side, mate,” Filip said, clapping Geirr on the back. “Maybe we get to ride it.”

Hector shook his head. “The water-wyvern is the guardian of Malmdor. Its job is to keep out all trespassers.”

Christoffer sighed, disappointed. “Too bad. I would have loved to ride him.”

“Will we have to feed it to get by it? What does a water-wyvern eat?” Aleks asked, readjusting his backpack and bow.

“It eats whatever it can catch,” Hector said forebodingly. “We’ll have to be careful as we near the shoreline. A water-wyvern might not have much in the way of limbs, being adapted to the water, but it has enough leg-power to propel itself onto the shore and attack.”

“At least it can’t fly,” said Geirr, relieved. “Small favors.”

Zaria and her friends gasped as it breached the surface, blowing out a large stream of air. The water-wyvern was magnificent with a gray-and-white pattern. It had a seahorse face, with a long snout, and no ears. The top of its head bore a wavy crest that trailed down its neck.

As the creature dove beneath the water, it flipped its body into the air. There were no scales anywhere on it, as far as she could see. Zaria half-expected a whale fluke, but its tail looked like an eel’s. The thing was massive, at least four times bigger than Norwick, and hideous.

They stood there, watching the shifting, undulating, shadow in the water. Aleks wore a pensive frown, his brown eyes narrowed. “Does it have a name?”

“The dwarves call it Vingar.”

Giveaway:

One lucky winner will win a Zaria Fierce Audible Package (codes for the first two books) – INT (Ends: 14th August)

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Good luck everyone 🙂

About:

Keira Gillett (Author):

Keira_Gillett_Author_2Keira Gillett is a technical publications librarian, book blogger, world traveler, artist, and now author.

She graduated from the University of Florida with a Bachelor of Arts in Drawing and Painting.

From an early age her mother instilled a love of the written word, as such she has always been a big reader.

Her first book, Zaria Fierce and the Secret of Gloomwood Forest, is about a young girl who must complete a quest to save her friend from a nasty river-troll.

Website | Twitter | Facebook | Pinterest 

Eoghan Kerrigan (Illustrator):

Eoghan_Kerrigan_Illustrator_1Eoghan Kerrigan is an illustrator from Kildare, Ireland who draws primarily fantasy characters and creatures.

He studied illustration in Ballyfermot College of Further Education and has produced work for various independent projects.

He has two cats and a soft spot for trolls.

Website Twitter | Facebook

Michele Carpenter (Narrator):

Michele_Carpenter_Narrator_2Michele Carpenter is an artist at heart, with a passion for acting.

She and her husband (also a voice actor) often work on projects together and help one another through the journey.

Together, they have three kids. Michele’s children love to hear her read stories and beg her to edit her narrations in the same room with them so they can listen too.

It’s partially for this reason that Michele has come to feel a personal responsibility to only record books that aren’t inappropriate for children or young adults–at their respective age levels and according to the maturity levels of the books they’re able to read.

“We never know how long we have on this earth and I’d rather leave behind a legacy of books that I’m not ashamed to have my friends, family and even future grandchildren, listen to forever.”

Website | Twitter | Facebook | YouTube
Ner

UNITED Launch Day Blitz (+ Giveaway)

UNITED Launch Day Blitz!

UnitedLaunchPic1

Hey there, booklovers!

I’m author Melissa Landers, and I’m thrilled to announce the release of UNITED, the final book in the Alienated trilogy. Our star-crossed lovers Aelyx and Cara have overcome some heavy obstacles to be together—riotous mobs, alien hybrids, and worst of all, high school on two planets. Now to stay together they’ll have to unite their people against a common enemy, a threat more deadly than they ever imagined. (NBD, right?) I’ve written an ending to this trilogy that makes my heart happy, and I hope you’ll love the conclusion as much as I do!

What do reviewers have to say? 

“The author’s storyline is out of this world.” –VOYA on Alienated

“The unusual plot and world building are ingenious.” –Library Media Connection on Alienated

“If [the third novel] is as entertaining as this tale, it can’t come soon enough.” –Kirkus Reviews on Invaded

“A fun genre-blending series that will only gain traction as it continues.” –Booklist on Invaded

If you love hot aliens, snarky humans, and wild sci-fi adventure, make sure to pick up a copy of UNITED today. It’s now available in stores and online.

Amazon | iBooksBarnes & Noble | TBDIndie Bound

To celebrate my book birthday, I’m offering one lucky winner a set of all 3 mini-posters in the Alienated series—signed by me! The giveaway is open internationally.

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Best of luck, and happy reading 🙂

About the Book:

UnitedFinal

Title: UNITED
Series: Alienated #3
Author: Melissa Landers
Release Date: August 2nd, 2016
Publisher: EverAfter
ISBN: 9780997086805
Add Goodreads

Synopsis:

*Might contain spoilers Alienated and Invaded*

After thwarting a deadly coup and saving the alliance between their worlds, Cara and Aelyx have finally earned a break. Their tiny island colony is everything they dreamed it would be―days spent gathering shells on the beach and nights in each other’s arms.

But the vacation is short-lived.

The treaty between Earth and L’eihr has awakened an ancient force that threatens to destroy them all. The Aribol, mysterious guardians charged with maintaining interstellar peace, deem the alliance a threat to the galaxy. They order a separation of the races, decreeing humans and L’eihrs must return to their own planets within the month or face extinction. In fact, they already have agents in place on Earth, ready to begin.

With the clock ticking, Aelyx and Cara assemble a team of colonists and race back to Earth, where they unite with old friends to solve the mystery of who the Aribol are, what they want, and the real reason the alliance has provoked them. As tensions build to a full-scale war, Aelyx and Cara must fight harder than ever―not just for their future, but for the survival of both their worlds.

About the Author:

Melissa1

Melissa Landers is a former teacher who left the classroom to pursue other worlds.

A proud sci-fi geek, she isn’t afraid to wear her Princess Leia costume in public—just ask her husband and three kids.

She lives outside Cincinnati in the small town of Loveland, “Sweetheart of Ohio.”

For more information, or just to say hello, visit http://www.melissa-landers.com.

Ner

Book Haul | July

Book Haul

Hello fellow bookworms!!

Today I’m bringing you my July bookhaul!! Not that I bought that many books this last month but the ones I bought, I’m super excited to show you 🙂 Why?! Because there is one particular book that was worth everything this month!! I’ll get to that in a bit!

Of course, as always, if you have been following me on Snapchat (nerthewitch), Twitter (@LeonorNer) and/or on Instagram (@nerthewitch), you probably know the books I got this month but it’s always different posting it on the blog! As you know, I always share everything with you 😉

Check out the books I got this month:

-Physical-

So, the first books I got this month are second-hand copies and they were cheaper than buying them online or on my local bookstore. By the price of one, I bought two and, even though they are used, they book brand new!

I bought these books through an Instagram account – the person sells used books at a cheaper price. If you are Portuguese, you can follow it here!

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  • Harry Potter and the Cursed Child [Harry Potter #8] – J.K. Rowling, Jack Thorne & John Tiffany (YES!! I AM FANGIRLING AND CRYING SO HARD!!! I haven’t bought a HP book in nine years – no, I haven’t bought any new editions or the illustrated edition because money is tight! – and this was quite expensive but WHO CARES?! IT’S HARRY POTTER!!! As soon as I was able to place my reserve, I went to my local bookstore and did it! And I have it… in my hands! And it’s beautiful, glorious, precious and I’m crying!!! Since I know I won’t be able to actually see the play, having the script and knowing the story is as close as I can get to be present. And now that WB bought the rights of the play, it’ll give every single one of us that won’t see it live, watch it for real! And yes, I’m freaking out so much I’m actually rambling… okay, I’m off!! *pats book lovingly*);

-NetGalley/Edelweiss-

My Wrap-Up for the month of July and my TBR for August will be coming up this week for sure. I just been slightly busier than usual since I have to go back and forth between my house and my sister’s to take care of her cats!! But, they’re coming 🙂

Ner

Wishlist Wednesday (#137)

Wishing on Wednesday is a weekly book blog hop hosted by Dani @Pen to Paper where we’ll post about one book that has been on our wishlist for some time – or recently added – and which we can’t wait to get our hands on.

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Wintersong
S. Jae-Jones
Publication Date: February 7th, 2017

Beware the goblin men and the wares they sell.

All her life, nineteen-year-old Liesl has heard tales of the beautiful, mysterious Goblin King. He is the Lord of Mischief, the Ruler Underground, and the muse around which her music is composed. Yet, as Liesl helps shoulder the burden of running her family’s inn, her dreams of composition and childish fancies about the Goblin King must be set aside in favor of more practical concerns.

But when her sister Käthe is taken by the goblins, Liesl journeys to their realm to rescue her sister and return her to the world above. The Goblin King agrees to let Käthe go—for a price. The life of a maiden must be given to the land, in accordance with the old laws. A life for a life, he says. Without sacrifice, nothing good can grow. Without death, there can be no rebirth. In exchange for her sister’s freedom, Liesl offers her hand in marriage to the Goblin King. He accepts.

Down in the Underground, Liesl discovers that the Goblin King still inspires her—musically, physically, emotionally. Yet even as her talent blossoms, Liesl’s life is slowly fading away, the price she paid for becoming the Goblin King’s bride. As the two of them grow closer, they must learn just what it is they are each willing to sacrifice: her life, her music, or the end of the world.

Goodreads Page | Author’s Goodreads Page | Author’s Website

Random Questions About Me

TAG

So, no time no see!

Today I decided to bring you a random tag I saw somewhere on the blogosphere. I don’t remember exactly where I saw it so I can’t link it to the proper person. If I happen to find out, I’ll leave the link 😉

This tag is mainly about silly questions concerning me and I found them so hilarious I had to share it with you. Plus, the fact that I have been slightly absent also helped me decide to post it 🙂

Okay, here we go:

  • Do you like blue cheese?

I simply don’t like cheese let alone blue one (I didn’t even know such thing existed!). I only like cheese on my pizza and on garlic bread… but cheese alone… *shivers*

  • Have you ever been drunk?

Yes! Well, not drunk as not remembering what happened or anything but drunk as being totally silly and pathetic and making my family roll their eyes 🙂

  • Do you own a gun?

Nope! I do have a knife in my bedroom though that made several appearances on my Bookstagram 😉

  • What flavour of Kool Aid was your favourite?

Since I have no idea what that is because I don’t think we have that here in Portugal… I’ll have to skip this one.

  • Do you get nervous before doctor appointment?

Always! I’m a bit hypochondriac but that sort that tries to avoid doctors in case I’m dying from a terrible disease. I know, I shouldn’t, but whenever I have a twinge of pain, I won’t survive the year (trust me, I’m like that and can be pretty annoying!)

  • What do you think of hot dogs?

I like to eat it but since I have a stupid allergy to pork meat, I try not to eat that much. I know, I could try other kind of sausage but, let’s be honest, a hot dog without pork meat? I just wouldn’t be the same 🙂

  • Favourite Christmas movie. 

A Disney version of ‘A Christmas Carol’ that my sister and I normally watch every single year! 

  • What do you prefer to drink in the morning? 

I always need my coffee in order to fully wake up… and I normally don’t drink anything during breakfast since I eat cereals and don’t drink the milk – I know, what a waste! But when I eat a proper breakfast, it’s normally chocolate milk 🙂

  • Can you do push ups? 

There was a time in my life I could because of PE. Now, not really!

  • What’s you favourite piece of jewellery?

My father works in the jewellery business so I grew up surrounded by it. But jewellery that I own I love my witch’s necklace that my sister gave me, my rings (they also make a cameo in some of my bookstagram pics) and a special ring that belonged to my mum – it’s a serpent and I always thought it was my sister’s because she is the eldest… but she gave up on that ring and on my 20th birthday, my mum gave it to me ^_^

  • Do you have A.D.D.?

I don’t think I do but when I was a child my mum thought I was hyperactive. 

  • What’s your favourite shoe?

My converses!! If I had Doc Martens I would say my boots but since I don’t… my converses are everything to me 😉

  • Middle name.

I don’t have a middle name though I wish I had. But a friend of mine normally calls me Leonor Marina and I admit I quite like it 😉

  • Name 3 thoughts at this exact moment.

I should be wearing my glasses. It’s freaking hot. I’m hungry!

  • Name 3 drinks you regularly drink.

Coffee, water and now I’m drinking milk at night because I need calcium on my system 😉

  • Current worry.

I’m going to be 10 days without my niece and just thinking about it is already painful :S

  • Current hate right now.

This stupid heat!! Seriously, it’s (and I kid you not) 33ºC today in Lisbon… WHAT?!

  • Dum Da Dum Dummmm what is that?

Hum… Vikings preparing for war?

  • How did you bring in the new year?

That was six/seven months ago but I spent it with my family preparing dinner and playing with my niece and my sister’s cats. Then we talked and waited for midnight and then went to bed. We are not the sort of people to go partying on New Year’s Eve… we prefer to stay home and enjoy the company of each other.

  • Where would you like to go?

Right now… to the beach!!! But I would love to go to the United Kingdom, Ireland, New Zealand and the Smithsonian.

  • Name three people who will complete this.

I prefer not to! If people want to do it, they are welcomed to 😉

  • Do you own slippers?

Yep, wearing them right now! Okay, maybe I’m wearing flip-flops right now but I do have slippers 😀

  • What colour shirt are you wearing right now?

A long and loose white shirt with the stamping of a girl on it! It was my sister’s and she gave it to me 🙂

  • Do you like sleeping on satin sheets?

I never slept on those before but I can tell it’s pretty uncomfortable. At least that’s what my mum says :S

  • Can you whistle?

Yes but poorly!

  • Favourite colour.

Blue though I also like purple!

  • Would you be a pirate?

Well YES!! Even though I haven’t watched that many pirates movies or read that many pirates books, I love pirates! So, yeah… I would totally be a kick-ass pirate like Geena Davis on Cutthroat Island 🙂

  • What songs do you sing in the shower?

I don’t sing in the shower… I recite the prologue of Beauty and the Beast and The Lord of the Rings while showering 😉

  • What’s in your right pocket right now?

I’m wearing a skirt so I don’t have pockets today!

  • Last thing that made you laugh.

My niece as always!!

  • Best bed sheets as a child. 

You know, I never cared much for that and still don’t. As long as my bed sheets are comfortable and fit my bed, I’m good to go 🙂

  • Worst injury you had as a child.

Well, at three I broke my left leg. At five I had a tumour and at eight I broke my right wrist 🙂

  • Do you love where you live?

Yes I do! Lisbon is one of the most beautiful cities in the world and even though I love Paris and other cities, I always miss my city and its hills, history, activity, everything!

  • How many dogs do you have?

None! My mum suffered a lot when her dog died when she was younger and she never wanted us to go through the same experience. However, now that my sister has two cats, I can already feel my heart breaking when one day they are gone 😦

  • Does someone have a crush on you?

That I’m aware no!

  • What is your favourite candy?

I love chocolate which isn’t exactly a surprise; gummy bears and another type of candy I don’t know the name but it’s like ribbon candy but with sugar! And now I want candy!!

  • Favourite sport team.

The Portuguese football team? Okay, I don’t really care much for sports but when Portugal is playing in any football sort of cup, I always root for them. WE ARE THE EUROPEAN CHAMPIONS!!!

. . .

And that’s it! I hope you guys enjoyed it and had fun with this tag. And if you want to do it, you can say I tagged you and leave a link for me to check out your answers 😉

Ner

“Until the very end.”

Two years ago I posted the reason why Harry Potter was important to me – you can read it here. And today (21st July, 2016), Deathly Hallows turns nine years and I still am, and will ALWAYS be a proud Harry Potter fan no matter what.

Happy Anniversary!  

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Ner

Wishlist Wednesday (#136)

Wishing on Wednesday is a weekly book blog hop hosted by Dani @Pen to Paper where we’ll post about one book that has been on our wishlist for some time – or recently added – and which we can’t wait to get our hands on.

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Replica [Replica #1]
Lauren Oliver
Publication Date: October 4th,, 2016

Gemma has been in and out of hospitals since she was born. ‘A sickly child’, her lonely life to date has revolved around her home, school and one best friend, Alice. But when she discovers her father’s connection to the top secret Haven research facility, currently hitting the headlines and under siege by religious fanatics, Gemma decides to leave the sanctuary she’s always known to find the institute and determine what is going on there and why her father’s name seems inextricably linked to it.

Amidst the frenzy outside the institute’s walls, Lyra – or number 24 as she is known as at Haven – and a fellow experimental subject known only as 72, manage to escape. Encountering a world they never knew existed outside the walls of their secluded upbringing , they meet Gemma and, as they try to understand Haven’s purpose together, they uncover some earth-shattering secrets that will change the lives of both girls forever…

Goodreads Page | Author’s Goodreads Page | Author’s Website

Review: The Faerie Guardian

NER REVIEWS (thefaerieguardian)

Author: Rachel Morgan
Release Date: Octoer 27th, 2012 (originally April 5th, 2012)
Publisher: Rachel Morgan
Pages: 298 (epub)
Format: epub
Genre:
 YA | Urban Fantasy | Fairies
Idiom: English
Series: Creepy Hollow #1
Read: from June 27 to May 1, 2016
Source & Shelf: Kindle App | Kindle
ISBN: 9780994667908
(Paperback)
Cups:
3,5 Cups
GoodreadsTBDAmazon

Synopsis

Enter a hidden world…

Protecting humans from dangerous magical creatures is all in a day’s work for a faerie training to be a guardian. Seventeen-year-old Violet Fairdale knows this better than anyone—she’s about to become the best guardian the Guild has seen in years. That is, until a cute human boy who can somehow see through her faerie glamor follows her into the Fae realm. Now she’s broken Guild Law, a crime that could lead to her expulsion.

The last thing Vi wants to do is spend any more time with the boy who got her into this mess, but the Guild requires that she return Nate to his home and make him forget everything he’s discovered of the Fae realm. Easy, right? Not when you factor in evil faeries, long-lost family members, and inconvenient feelings of the romantic kind. Vi is about to find herself tangled up in a dangerous plot—and it’ll take all her training to get out alive.

My Opinion

It’s is one of those books you had no expectations whatsoever but managed to actually surprised it. Though it has its flaws, I ended up enjoyed The Faerie Guardian more than what I anticipated. Which is always a great surprise to be honest. Who doesn’t like to be surprised by a book?

The Faerie Guardian is about Violet, a fairy who is training to become a guardian. During one of her assignment, she’s followed to Creepy Hollow, her forest, by a human boy. And that was one of the main and biggest rules in her world. But when she’s about to bring him back to his world, they end up being kidnapped and a lot more follows after that event that will make Violet realise that there is more about this human boy than she thought. Not to mention that she has a rare gift that is being haunted down for evil proposes.  

It’s an easy story to follow but it sure begins to get complicated as you read the book. What I thought was going to be the main plot, ends up being pushed aside to give another story the centre stage and I enjoyed that particular aspect of this book quite a lot.

Violet was a nice character to met. She’s funny, sarcastic and a kick-ass young girl with a determined goal set: to become a guardian. When she meets Nate, the human boy she was assigned to protect from a evil creature, she breaks the rules and pretty much jeopardises her chances at finishing her training first. And that was perhaps the only think about Violet I didn’t enjoy the most.

Well, to be honest, their relation was mainly what I didn’t like in the book. It was too sudden, too fast and quick. I mean, we all know that most of the time books have insta-romance but there are some I can’t really enjoy. Not because I don’t like the couple but because it was simply too sudden! There was no time for the characters to get to know each other properly. It’s a romance I can’t seem to connect with because the characters didn’t allowed me to see it grow and develop.

But there is another character in this book that might be a potential love-interest and that one clicked with me way more than Violet and Nate. But I won’t get into that because of spoilers! But this character I’m talking about allowed me to get to know him and his relationship with Violet didn’t feel too rushed. 

I really enjoyed the whole Creepy Hollow universe. I feel this world has great potential and the little we got to know made super excited about it. The author didn’t throw everything about this fantasy world at us expecting us to know it already. Instead she allowed the characters to introduce us to their environment.

The plot, in the beginning, felt slightly rushed as if the author was trying to get the action started without wasting time. But it was only part of it as a lot more ends up happening towards the end of the book. The first half of the action – mostly related to Nate – only helped the plot to reach another plot and they end up being connected. And Rachel Morgan‘s easy and effortless writing helped connect the dots and made an entertaining read

In the end, The Faerie Guardian was a really huge surprise. It was a fun, quick read with a main character that I enjoyed (at times!) and a fantasy world that has all the potential to be amazing. Really looking forward to read more in this series and see where the story goes.
Ner

Wishlist Wednesday (#135)

Wishing on Wednesday is a weekly book blog hop hosted by Dani @Pen to Paper where we’ll post about one book that has been on our wishlist for some time – or recently added – and which we can’t wait to get our hands on.

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Hunted [Hunted #1]
Meagan Spooner
Publication Date: March 14th, 2017

Beauty knows the Beast’s forest in her bones—and in her blood. Though she grew up with the city’s highest aristocrats, far from her father’s old lodge, she knows that the forest holds secrets and that her father is the only hunter who’s ever come close to discovering them.

So when her father loses his fortune and moves Yeva and her sisters back to the outskirts of town, Yeva is secretly relieved. Out in the wilderness, there’s no pressure to make idle chatter with vapid baronessas…or to submit to marrying a wealthy gentleman. But Yeva’s father’s misfortune may have cost him his mind, and when he goes missing in the woods, Yeva sets her sights on one prey: the creature he’d been obsessively tracking just before his disappearance.

Deaf to her sisters’ protests, Yeva hunts this strange Beast back into his own territory—a cursed valley, a ruined castle, and a world of creatures that Yeva’s only heard about in fairy tales. A world that can bring her ruin or salvation. Who will survive: the Beauty, or the Beast?

Goodreads Page | Author’s Goodreads Page | Author’s Website

Review: Relentless

NER REVIEWS (relentles)

Author(s): Tera Lynn Childs & Tracy Deebs
Release Date: June 7th, 2016
Publisher: Sourcebooks Fire
Pages: 288 (Hardcover)
Format: PDF
Genre:
 YA | Superheroes | Sci-Fi
Idiom: English
Series: The Hero Agenda #2
Read: from June 20 to 27, 2016
Source & Shelf: NetGalley | Kobo
ISBN: 9781492616610
(Hardcover)
Cups:
3,5 Cups
GoodreadsTBDAmazon

Synopsis

Revenge is easy, but justice is worth fighting for…

Kenna is tired of being lied to—and hunted by the very allies she once trusted. Unearthing the dark secrets of the superhero world has not only endangered her life, now her boyfriend faces execution for crimes he didn’t commit and her mother is being held captive in a secret governmental prison.

Kenna is determined to stand up for what’s right and save those she loves from unspeakable fates. It’s time for the betrayal to end. It’s time for the real criminals to face justice.

But the truth is even more terrifying than Kenna could imagine. A conspiracy threatens the fate of heroes, villains, and all of humanity. If Kenna’s going to survive, she must draw on her deepest strength: her resilience. Because when Kenna’s pushed to the limit, she doesn’t break down. She fights back.

My Opinion

Disclaimer: Thank you NetGalley and Sourcebooks Fire for providing me with a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

Relentless is the second book and conclusion to The Hero Agenda duology. And, if you remember my first review, I really enjoyed the concept of this superheroes vs. villains series. Powerless was, overall, a great introduction to a brand new YA series and I’m glad to see that Relentless was also good.

Well, it did dragged a little bit but it was a great sequel nevertheless!

In this book we continue following Kenna and her group of villains and superheroes in order to overthrow the bad guy. Not wanting to dwell too much in the plot since it’ll pretty much spoil the first book, let’s just say that this one centred more in wanting to stop someone from doing something despicable to the whole world and, in the meantime, to save someone. I know, it sounds like the plot of every single YA book but let’s not forget that this is a sequel.

The characters in this book changed somewhat since Powerless. Kenna suffers quite a lot in this book – no spoilers, I promise – and I admit feeling pretty bad for her. Right in the beginning of the book she has two twists and turns that affected her emotionally. But I admit that she managed to endure quite a lot throughout Relentless and her bravery was, at times reckless but a way for her to cope with what she had to do. Instead of whining about how much in pain she was, she channelled it into action in order to save the world.

And of course that being finding a few truths, she finds out a lot more about herself. And there was one particular part I really enjoyed and that I did not see coming at all. In a way it makes sense and was a huge step towards Kenna decision to stop someone from hurting peoples. And it made her even stronger than she previously was.

Rebel, a character I had no connection in the first book changed and I admit beginning to like her a little bit more in this one. But there is something in her that I can’t quite put my finger on that makes me not particularly like her though she’s a great friend. I think she’s just one of those characters you can’t really care for (it happens!).

Draven’s character was, in my opinion, the character that didn’t change that much. He was the same though his mind was perhaps affected by the events of the end of book one. His relationship with Kenna continued to be sweet and adorable and I know he was the rock that held her together.

I have to say this: I continue to FREAKING LOVE Nitro! And in this book we have a new character that opens up Nitro’s character a little bit more. Not only is he Scottish, a villain but his love interest was not who I had expected. And I loved it. I love really love to have a novella solemnly about Nitro!

Even though there was not a single moment in the book where the characters could take a deep breath without running for their lives, I found that there were moments were the plot dragged slightly. Not as in nothing happening but as in Kenna’s inner struggles in dealing what was happening too repetitive and tiring! That is one of her major flaws: she repeats herself a lot! She has a thought in a chapter and in the next one she repeats it.

I found this plot engaging and truly action-paced. And I remember mentioning on my first review that I loved the fact that these characters failed at their attempts and I was glad to see it continued in Relentless. They are not the bunch of people that have a plan and can make it work with no problems whatsoever. They fail and it shows they have flaws and there’s nothing better than reading about flawed characters! It makes them human in a super world.

Relentless had a lot of twists and turns that I was not expecting (a few minor ones that were predictable though). From the plot to characters to actions, I was hooked and eager to read more and more.

This book was the conclusion of Kenna’s story but the authors certainly let the door open in the end. They didn’t disregard the possibility of more books set in this world and I like the idea of visiting this universe in the future (though I still want a book about Nitro first!). And their writing was so easy to read, Kenna’s voice sarcastic when needed to be and hilarious at the same time.

Relentless was an amazing book despite its flaws (dragging, a few things concerning secondary characters being perhaps too predictive). It had action, science-fiction, superheroes and villains, good vs. evil, friendship and romance and much more. The Hero Agenda was a great duology by Tera Lynn Childs and Tracy Deebs and it’s the sort of book I could easily see as a TV-series. Definitely a series I enjoy and will continue reading if the authors release more stuff!
Ner

Wishlist Wednesday (#134)

Wishing on Wednesday is a weekly book blog hop hosted by Dani @Pen to Paper where we’ll post about one book that has been on our wishlist for some time – or recently added – and which we can’t wait to get our hands on.

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Spindle Fire
Lexa Hillyer
Publication Date: April 11th, 2017

Perfect for fans of Sarah J. Maas and Leigh Bardugo, Spindle Fire is an enthralling, wholly original re-imagining of a classic faerie story.

Half-sisters Isabelle and Aurora are polar opposites: Isabelle is the king’s headstrong illegitimate daughter, whose sight was tithed by faeries; Aurora, beautiful and sheltered, was tithed her sense of touch and voice on the same day. Despite their differences, the sisters have always been extremely close.

And then everything changes, with a single drop of Aurora’s blood, a Faerie Queen who is preparing for war, a strange and enchanting dream realm—and a sleep so deep it cannot be broken.

Spindle Fire is a tour de force fantasy set in the dwindling, deliciously corrupt world of the fae, and featuring two truly unforgettable heroines.

Goodreads Page | Author’s Goodreads Page | Author’s Website

TBR | July

TBR

HAPPY 4TH OF JULY MY FELLOW AMERICANS FRIENDS!!!

Alright, another month is beginning (or is already underway hehe xD) and with it a brand new TBR!!

So far I’ve been quite good at keeping up with my list, never once straying from it. I’m really excited to show you all the awesome books I’m planning to read during this month of hot weather (depending on which side of the hemisphere you live) and vacations.

Check out the books I’m planning on reading this month:

TBR | July:

What about you? What are your reading plans for this month? 

Ner

Monthly Wrap-Up | June

Wrap-Up

Another month gone which means, another Wrap-Up!

I’m quite happy with this month because I managed to read a total of five books. It might not look like it’s a lot but for someone who had a terrible few months, this is progress!

Wrap-Up | June

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  • City of Glass [The Mortal Instruments #3] – Cassandra Clare (5/5 cups) GR | TBD
    • This is, so far, my favourite book in The Mortal Instruments series. I loved the action, the characters, pretty much everything! Even though people tell me that the next book is the worse, I’m super pumped to continue with this amazing series.;
  • Re-Read: The Witch Hunter [The Witch Hunter #1] – Virginia Boecker (5/5 cups) GR | TBD
    • This was a re-read because I wanted to start reading the sequel with every single detail fresh in my mind. And if I previously had loved this book, the second time around was way better;
  • The King Slayer [The Witch Hunter #2] – Virginia Boecker (5/5 cups) GR | TBD
    • I cannot believe how good this book was!! One of my favourite series, without a doubt. And I’m so happy I decided to re-read the first book because if I haven’t, I probably wouldn’t have enjoyed this one as much as I because a lot of details from the first book are important in this one!;
  • The Healer [The Witch Hunter #0,5] – Virginia Boecker (5/5 cups – no review) – GR | Amazon (US)
    • This is a novella about John, a main character in The Witch Hunter series and it works as a prequel to the first book. I didn’t count this one as a whole book because this is a novella and it was quite of a short one. And I read it not only because I wanted but also because I wasn’t ready to leave this universe and characters behind. I have a mini-mini-review on Goodreads though if you want to check it out :P;
  • Relentless [The Hero Agenda #2] – Tera Lynn Childs & Tracy Deebs (3,5/5 cups) – GR | TBD
    • I’m not yet sure about the rating. I still need to write the review. But I did enjoyed this one! As a sequel, it was pretty solid;
  • The Faerie Guardian [Creepy Hollow #1] – Rachel Morgan (3,5/5 cups) – GR | TBD
    • This was a surprise. I enjoyed this one far more than what I anticipated! A really entertaining fantasy story :D;

And that’s a wrap!!!

Ner

Book Haul | June

Book Haul

Hello beautiful people!!

So, June is over! And with it I bring you a brand new Book Haul filled with awesome books! I’m quite happy because this month we had the Lisbon BookFair where I bought a few books and a brand new book by my favourite author came out… so, yes, I’m quite excited!

If you have been following me on Snapchat (nerthewitch), Twitter (@LeonorNer) and/or on Instagram (@nerthewitch), you probably know everything I got this month but still… I want to share it you!

On the BookFair I bought a total of three books for myself (plus two more for my mother!). I went there first with my aunt and the books I got were pretty much a bargain! And then I went there with Carla and before I left, I managed to buy one more book. Since it was the last day, all books were with 20% discount so the one I chose was cheaper than when I went there the first time. 

So, let’s jump straight into the books I got on the Lisbon BookFair:

-Physical-

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  • Evernight [Evernight #1] – Claudia Gray (This is a second hand copy I got at the BookFair at a really cheap price. And since I’ve never read any Claudia Gray’s books and apparently this is “Twilight” done right” – according to author Maria V. Snyder – I thought, why the heck not?! I just didn’t know there were five books in this series… If I happen to enjoy this one, it’s going to take a while to get the whole series :S); 
  • Sapphire Blue [Ruby Red/ Edelstein Trilogy/ Precious Stone Trilogy #2] – Kerstin Gier (This was so cheap and such a bargained, I couldn’t really resist buying this book! It was only 3,50€ and since this is a sequel to a book I’ve read back in January/February, I couldn’t leave it behind, right?!);
  • Heir of Fire [Throne of Glass #3] – Sarah J. Maas (OMG!! I freaking finally have this! I bought this one when I went there on my second trip and I was lucky because all the books on that day – it was the last day – were 20% off so I bought this one at a cheaper price than when I went there the first time. My initial idea on my first trip was to buy Heir of Fire and Queen of Shadows – probably Heir of Fire and A Court of Thorns and Roses if available (which wasn’t by the way) but I found the prices – even the bookfair prices – ridiculously high! I mean, I could buy them online and they would be cheaper! But on my second trip it was 50/50 – meaning, it would be the same buying it online or buying it on the fair. So I made my choice! Unfortunately I couldn’t buy Queen of Shadows but that one will definitely be my next online buy :D);

I also got that bookmark with my name on it. It has the meaning of Leonor and on the back it has famous women with the same name. They were all Queens of Portugal 🙂 With the bookmark there was also the pencil with the same design and my name plus the meaning. I basically use it to pin my hair ;P I wanted to buy my mum one as well but they were quite limited when it came to names. My name and my twin’s were the only ones available though :S

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  • A Torre the Espinhos/ Tower of Thorns [Blackthorn and Grim #3] – Juliet Marillier (You all know that Juliet is my favourite author… I mean, she’s my Master!! And I’ve been waiting for the sequel to Blackthorn and Grim for AGES now! And it finally came out, the second book but still… it’s better than nothing! I LOVE this cover so much… it’s so freaking beautiful and I’m super happy that Planeta – the PT publisher – decided to stick with the original ones!);

-ebook-

keep-calm-book-cover-to-come

  • Zenith [The Androma Saga #1] – Sasha Alsberg & Lidnsay Cummings (For those of you who don’t know, Sasha is one of my favourite BookTubers – check out her channel abookutopia – so when I found out that she was releasing a book with Lidnsay Cummings, I told myself I would support her as much as I could. And I admit I’m super pumped to read this! I will be reading it in July and I will always support both Sasha and Lindsay. I hope their book will be picked up by a publisher – they are currently self-publishing this book themselves (hence it being out only as an ebook) – and that we all will have it as a physical book sometime in the future.);

-NetGalley/Edelweiss-

  • Magic Bitter, Magic Sweet – Charlie N. Holmberg (I was auto-approved for this title and when I saw the cover, I had to get it. And then I read the synopsis and I was immediately sold! Let’s hope this book will amaze me as well as the cover :D);
  • And I Darken [The Conquerors Saga #1] – Kierstin White (You guys have no idea how excited I am for this book! I mean, a book. When I first cam across this book, read the description – back then it was something like “Vlad the Impaler for YA” – I knew I had to get my hands on this book! And I was not expecting to actually be approved for this title but I was!! I will definitely be reading this one in July! So freaking excited! I even had this one as one of my Wednesday Wishlist so… I’m so pumped indeed :P);
  • The Beginning Woods – Malcolm McNeill (This book was basically approved today – June 30th – and I really wanted to share it because, not only the cover looks super intriguing, but because the plot also sounds super interesting! Let’s see what this book will bring :D);
  • Split the Sun [Inherit the Stars #2] – Tessa Elwood (I haven’t read the first one yet but when I saw the sequel/conclusion – me thinks it’s also the last one – I thought it would be quite cool to have both books and marathon them. And since I’m auto-approved for these titles, even better! Let’s hope this series is good – I’ve read a few negative reviews though – because I quite like the sound of the plot!);

Ner

Review: Zaria Fierce and the Dragon Keeper’s Golden Shoes

Author: Keira Gillett
Illustrator: Eoghan Kerrigan
Release Date: July 1st, 2016
Publisher: Keira Gillett
Pages: 300 (Kindle)
Format: PDF
Genre:
 YA | Fantasy | Magic
Idiom: English
Series: Zaria Fierce #3
Read: from May 29 to June 2, 2016
Source & Shelf: Author | Kobo
ISBN: 9781942750048 
(ebooks)
Cups:
45 Cups
GoodreadsAmazon

Synopsis

“Nothing can save you now, Princess.”

How can anyone be tricked twice? Isn’t there even a saying about that? Zaria Fierce is determined to get things right this time and with the Drakeland Sword in her possession she’s ready to take on trolls, dragons, and whatever else may come… but first she and her friends are going to have to figure out just how much trouble they’re in at home.

My Opinion

Disclaimer: Thank you Keira Gillett for providing me with a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

Zaria Fierce and the Dragon Keeper’s Golden Shoes is the third (and possibly the last) book in the adventure series Zaria Fierce. This is a series I have been following since I was first contacted by the author, Keira Gillett, last year and I am so happy I accepted Keira‘s request to be part of this wonderful journey. I adored every single minute of this adventure and I’m looking forward for more books from this author.

This book happens immediately after the events of the second book – Zaria Fierce and the Enchanted Drakeland Sword – where Zaria unfortunately was tricked into freeing Koll using the Drakeland Sword. With the help of her friends and Hector, the Stag Lord, they venture into various realms in order to finally rescue Hart. And after they accomplish that, they have to get Queen Helena’s shoes so they can travel to the Under Realm to finally defeat Koll and his brothers.

One of the most important themes in Keira‘s books is friendship and I always marvel at how beautiful she describes Zaria and her group of friends. They always support each other and are always there for whatever comes their way and never once falter to protect the other. They develop in such a slow and fluid way you basically see these characters grow since book one and see their friendship becoming tighter. And Zaria was perhaps the one that grew up the most since the first book. After learning the truth about her birth parents, realising how important her role is in saving the world, she could just turn her backs and leave – or letting it all go to her head – but she stays and fights till the end though not without doubting herself. She’s brave and courageous and I will miss her. Well, I will miss all of them to be honest.

In the Dragon Keeper’s Golden Shoes we finally met Hart – later known by a different name but I won’t spoil it for you. And, I have to admit this, when I read his description I couldn’t help but picturing the Beast after his transformation in Beauty and the Beast but in a much younger version. He’s a character that I would really love to know more, to have more adventures with him. He seemed to be as wise as his father and I wish to see his friendship with Zaria grow and develop… maybe into something more? Who knows 😉

As always, I’m completely mesmerised by how much the Norwegian folklore is present in these books. There were a few new “beasts” such as the banshees and the mares (which scared the living hell out of me to be honest) but the same old creatures made a cameo. We had the trolls, witches, the dwarves, the ellefolken, dragons, the lot. The fantasy in these books is strong and so beautifully explore and described I almost felt like I could wander through Norway and stumble upon these eerie creatures and realms.

Keira‘s writing is always fluid and easy to read and, even though I’m repeating myself it’s always worth mentioning, you can see how much she has developed as a writer since The Secret of Gloomwood Forest. The way she describes the characters, the setting, the fantastic creatures makes everything seem real. Not to mention how she approaches not only the Norwegian folklore part of the book with such a dedication, but other themes such as friendship, bravery, family and believing in yourself.

The illustrations by Eoghan Kerrigan are stunning as I keep mentioning. There was one particular illustration I adored above all else. Alongside Keira, he made this wonderful universe come to life and gave them a real aspect. I think that this book would be incomplete without his touch in it.

Overall, Zaria Fierce and the Dragon Keeper’s Golden Shoes was a spectacular conclusion to a great trilogy (though that ending left the door open for more adventures). Filled with magic, a great story line, amazing and real characters, wonderful settings and beautifully explored themes, Keira Gillett created a trilogy that I will always cherish and will visit anytime. If you like The Chronicles of Narnia, The Hobbit, The Spiderwick Chronicles or simply love a book filled with Norwegian folklore and fantasy, then this is the ultimate series for you to read, devour and lost yourselves in.

Thank you Keira once again for allowing me to be part of this adventure. Bring the next one 🙂
Ner

Wishlist Wednesday (#133)

Wishing on Wednesday is a weekly book blog hop hosted by Dani @Pen to Paper where we’ll post about one book that has been on our wishlist for some time – or recently added – and which we can’t wait to get our hands on.

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Blood Rose Rebellion
Rosalyn Eves
Publication Date: March 28th, 2017

In an alternate Victorian England where social prestige stems from a trifecta of blood, money, and magic, sixteen-year old Anna Arden is barred from the society she yearns for by a defect of blood. She believes herself Barren, unable to perform the most rudimentary spells. Anna would do anything to belong, but after inadvertently breaking her sister’s debutante spells, Anna finds herself exiled with her aging grandmother to her grandmother’s native Hungary.

Her life might well be over.

But in Hungary, Anna finds that nothing about her world or her own lack of magic is quite as it seems. Fissures in the Binding that holds her world’s magic are expanding, and the ancient creatures bound by that spell beg Anna to release them. As rebellion sweeps across Hungary, Anna’s unique ability to break spells becomes the catalyst everyone is seeking. In the company of nobles, revolutionaries, and Roma, Anna must choose: deny her unique power and cling to the life she’s always wanted—or embrace her ability, destroy the Binding, spark a revolution, and change the face of magic itself.

This book will appeal to fans of Leigh Bardugo’s Grisha trilogy and Naomi Novik’s UPROOTED.

Goodreads Page | Author’s Goodreads Page | Author’s Website

Review: The King Slayer

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Author: Virginia Boecker
Release Date: June 14th, 2016
Publisher: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers
Pages: 368 (Hardcover)
Format: Ppaperback
Genre:
 YA | Fantasy | Witches
Idiom: English
Series: The Witch Hunter #2
Read: from June 16 to 20, 2016
Source & Shelf: Sent by Author | Own
ISBN: 9780316327237
(Hardcover)
Cups:
5 Cups
GoodreadsTBDAmazon

Synopsis

“I think, in time, you’ll either be my greatest mistake or my greatest victory.”

Former witch hunter Elizabeth Grey is hiding within the magically protected village of Harrow, evading the price put on her head by Lord Blackwell, the usurper king of Anglia. Their last encounter left Blackwell ruined, but his thirst for power grows stronger every day. He’s readying for a war against those who would resist his rule—namely Elizabeth and the witches and wizards she now calls her allies.

Having lost her stigma, a magical source of protection and healing, Elizabeth’s strength is tested both physically and emotionally. War always means sacrifice, and as the lines between good and evil blur once more, Elizabeth must decide just how far she’ll go to save those she loves.

My Opinion

*This review might contain spoilers*

Disclaimer: I won this book on a giveaway hosted by the author herself, Virginia Boecker. Thank you for providing me with a copy of this book.

The King Slayer is the sequel to The Witch Hunter, one of my favourite books from 2015. I loved the first book, so my expectations for the second book were slightly higher than usual. And let me tell you, it surpassed all expectations!

In this book we continue Elizabeth’s story as an old with hunter whose life was turned upside down after being accused of witchcraft. By helping the most wanted wizard in the kingdom and by finding out her role in all of it, Elizabeth begins to understand that nothing is exactly as it seems. In The King Slayer, after the events of the first book, she’s faced with some serious decisions that might kill her or those she cares about.

One of the things I loved about this book was how many of the small details from the first book play a major role in this one. And some characters that are only mentioned, happen to be important to the future of the kingdom.

I thought that Elizabeth’s character developed in such a slow and amazing pace. In the first book she’s thrown into a conspiracy that was against pretty much everything she believed in. In this one, after everything that happened, she’s careful to analyse people and consequences, always putting the others first and trying her best to save her friends. Though at times she was slightly reckless and perhaps a little bit too blind, I loved how human, brave and courageous she was.

John’s character broke my heart at times throughout the book. The fact that he’s carrying Elizabeth’s stigma (what used to heal her when she was a witch hunter), the fact that its magic is in conflict with John’s healing abilities, makes him a completely different person, someone who doesn’t care about anything else but end Blackwell’s reign. And it was terrifying how much he had to battle against it and pretty much on his own. The way he treated Elizabeth was so heartbreaking I felt sorry for her.

I missed George in this book. If you guys remember my review for The Witch Hunter, I mentioned that I loved his character, that he was my favourite in the book. And I was hoping to have more of him, to have his comic-relief in Th King Slayer but unfortunately his role played a role outside the kingdom and he only appeared right at the end. And I missed him so much! I’m hoping to have a novella solemnly dedicated to him because he is one of the best characters in this amazing universe.

There were two twists in this book that had me stop reading and basically stare at the book not believing what I was reading. Actually, there was one particular twist that I had theorised about but never thought would actually happen. And when it did, I did not see that result coming.

Virginia Boecker‘s writing is always effortless and so easy to read, her description of Elizabeth’s feelings and thoughts so well crafted you feel such a strong connect to each and every single character.

A few twists and turns made me gasp and hooked in the book since page one, such as the first book did. The action had me on the edge of my sit and the whole plot developed slowly and at the right pace.

Overall, The King Slayer was an amazing sequel and an awesome book. Filled with action, characters that I have a connection with and love dearly, magic, fantasy, romance and friendship. This is the sort of book I love to read, that has everything I love and will always cherish and treasure. 
Ner

Wishlist Wednesday (#132)

Wishing on Wednesday is a weekly book blog hop hosted by Dani @Pen to Paper where we’ll post about one book that has been on our wishlist for some time – or recently added – and which we can’t wait to get our hands on.

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Kingdom of Ash and Briars
Hannah West
Publication Date: August 20th, 2016

Bristal, an orphaned kitchen maid, lands in a gritty fairy tale gone wrong when she discovers she is an elicromancer with a knack for shape-shifting. An ancient breed of immortal magic beings, elicromancers have been winnowed down to merely two – now three – after centuries of bloody conflict in the realm. Their gifts are fraught with responsibility, and sixteen-year-old Bristal is torn between two paths. Should she vow to seek the good of the world, to protect and serve mortals? Or should she follow the strength of her power, even if it leads to unknown terrors? She draws on her ability to disguise herself as a man to infiltrate a prince’s band of soldiers, and masquerades as a fairy godmother to shield a cursed princess, but time is running out. As an army of dark creatures grows closer, Bristal faces a supernatural war. To save the kingdoms, Bristal must find the courage to show her true form.

Building on homages to Cinderella, Sleeping Beauty, Jane Austen’s Emma and the Chinese legend of Hua Mulan, Hannah West makes a spectacular debut

Goodreads Page | Author’s Goodreads Page | Author’s Website