Review of The Blazing Star by Imani Josey

The Blazing Star by Imani Josey. ★★ By the end, reading The Blazing Star was painful. If I weren’t intending to review this one, there is no way I would have finished. I was seriously considering quitting when I only had twenty percent of the book left. Portia White has always dwelt in the shadow of her genius twin…

Review of Guardian of the Dead by Karen Healey

Guardian of the Dead by Karen Healey. ★★1/2 Going into Guardians of the Dead, I had only vague ideas of what it was about. I knew that it was set in New Zealand, involved Māori mythology, contained an asexual side character and appeared on many asexual representation lists. The last two are largely why I picked up the book….

Review of The Bear and the Nightingale by Katherine Arden

The Bear and the Nightingale by Katherine Arden. ★★1/2 Trigger warning – rape The Bear and the Nightingale is one of those books that everyone seems to love… except me. Vasya’s grandmother was a wild woman with strange powers, and Vasya has inherited some of her ability. She can see and speak to the spirits of the hearth…

Review of Grudgebearer by J.F. Lewis

Grudgebearer by J.F. Lewis. ★★ Grudgebearer is the start to an epic fantasy trilogy. Unfortunately, it wasn’t to my tastes. If I weren’t reading it for review, I wouldn’t have finished. Grudgebearer is set in a world with a wide array of species, some of whom are immortal. Kholster is the first of the immortal Aern, a wolf-like, carnivorous…

Review of Throne of Glass by Sarah J. Maas

Throne of Glass by Sarah J. Maas. ★★1/2 Throne of Glass is a YA fantasy that felt like a compilation of YA tropes I’m not fond of. The heroine, Celaena Sardothien, is the best assassin in the world at the age of eighteen. She’s spent the last year in a prison camp but is offered the chance at freedom…

Review of The Dead House by Dawn Kurtagich

The Dead House by Dawn Kurtagich. ★★1/2 This was a let down. I was hoping I’d get something with a creepy atmosphere that would keep me turning the pages. Turns out I got a shambling mess of a book. Years ago, Elmbridge High School burned to the ground. Three people were killed and one went missing. Told through…

Review of Man Tiger by Eka Kurniawan

Man Tiger by Eka Kurniawan. ★★1/2 Trigger warning: rape There’s not a whole lot I like about Man Tiger. When you get right down to it, the only element I find intriguing is the structure. Maybe it’s just too literary for me? Man Tiger starts with a revelation that shakes a small, rural Indonesian community: Margio, a local youth, has…

Review of Cast in Shadow by Michelle Sagara

Cast in Shadow by Michelle Sagara. ★★1/2 My reading relationship with Cast in Shadows had a lot of ups and downs. The beginning made it seem like it would be terrible again. The middle made it seem like it’d be all right. Then the ending brought it to back down to a “not very good.” Kaylin is a Hawk,…

Review of Perfect State by Brandon Sanderson

Perfect State by Brandon Sanderson. ★★1/2 I generally like Sanderson’s work, but I was not enthralled by this novella. The concept behind the world was clever, but I found the protagonist annoying, which might have been inevitable due to the set up of the story. The plot was mostly lackluster, although there was one twist which was…

Review of The Queen of the Tearling by Erika Johnsen

The Queen of the Tearling by Erika Johansen. ★★ On one hand, The Queen of the Tearling has an interesting premise and a promising lead. On the other hand, the world building has more holes than a slice of Swiss cheese and some sizable blind spots regarding race, culture, and religion. Basically, the author writes a medieval European…

Review of Of Scions and Men by Courteny Sloan

Of Scions and Men by Courtney Sloan. ★★1/2 On the surface, Of Scions and Men looks like it could be really cool – a dystopian urban fantasy world ruled by vampires. However, it’s poorly executed and often feels like a collection of little thought out tropes. If I weren’t reading this with the intention to review, I would…

Review of Never Let Me Go by Kazuo Ishiguro

Never Let Me Go by Kazuo Ishiguro. ★★1/2 Never Let Me Go is essentially a fictional memoir with dystopian undertones. It’s a coming of age story, and possibly a metaphor for life. Unfortunately, I hardly ever cared about anyone or anything in the entire book. Right off the bat, you know there’s something strange going on in Never Let Me…