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Tuesday, April 24, 2018

A Court of Thorns and Roses trilogy review

Whether positive or negative, my review is my own and may differ from others opinions.

A Court of Thorns and Roses Trilogy Review 

picture from Amazon

Title: A Court of Thorns and Roses
AuthorSarah J Maas
Where to purchaseAmazon

Product details


    • ISBN-10: 1619634449
  • Publisher: Bloomsbury USA Childrens
    Edition: Hardcover
    Series: A Court of Thorns and Roses (book 1)
    Publication Date: May 5th, 2015
    Page length: 432 pages
    Genre: science fiction, fantasy, teen, Young Adult, Romance, Dystopian

    I borrowed this trilogy from my friend, Amy after seeing it all over Instagram for a year.



    Synopsys:



    When nineteen-year-old huntress Feyre kills a wolf in the woods a beast-like creature arrives to demand retribution for it Dragged to a treacherous magical land she only knows about from legends Feyre discovers that her captor is not an animal but Tamlin-one of the lethal immortal faeries who once ruled their world As she dwells on his estate her feelings for Tamlin transform from icy hostility into a fiery passion that burns through every lie and warning shes been told about the beautiful dangerous world of the Fae But an ancient wicked shadow over the faerie lands is growing and Feyre must find a way to stop it or doom Tamlin-and his world-forever
    Feyre mug by @thewatercoolie
    There are SO many awesome bookish merchandise around this series. The beautiful mug is by the artist The Water Colorie which I won in a giveaway on Instagram by LitJoyCrate in January which is when I decided to finally read this series. The first book, A Court of Thorns and Roses is basically a sexualized Beauty and the Beast retelling. I LOVE retellings! As a matter of fact I just read Hunted by Megan Spooner in May 2017 which is another Beauty and the Beast retelling that was great. On top of the anticipation from seeing the series repeatedly and my friend's enthusiastic recommendation I started off the new year reading ACOTAR. I HATED this book. It was so slow, and long, and awful. Feyre, the main character was not likeable. She was a hunter raised on horror stories about Fey who took care of her good-for-nothing, selfish, entitled, poor sisters and father. In the woods she comes along an impossible wolf, who she just KNOWS is a Faerie , and kills it to provide food and money for her family. The next day High Lord of Spring Court, Tamlin demands she trade Feyre's life for his wolf buddy that she killed. Feyre instantly turns into this weak pathetic character. Tamlin's 'revenge' turns into he takes care of her like a princess, and her family is given money, house, and business opportunity. WHAT?! Tamlin also leaves her alone a lot and she's bored and paints and there is some mysterious conflict going somewhere else along with sexual tension rising. 3/4ths of the book was boring and over before anything exciting actually happens. Mystery conflict is revealed and of course, since this is a retelling, true love breaks the curse. It wasn't ALL bad- but it was mostly bad.
    Book quoted mirror

    Good afternoon," I said cheerfully, with an especially saccharine smile for the High Lord. He blinked at me, and both of the faerie men murmured their greetings as I took a seat across from Lucien, not my usual place facing Tamlin.
    I drank deeply from my goblet of water before piling food on my plate. I savored the tense silence as I consumed the meal before me. "You look . . . refreshed," Lucien observed with a glance at Tamlin. I shrugged. "Sleep well?" "Like a babe." I smiled as him and took another bite of food, and felt Lucien's eyes travel inexorably to my neck. "What is that bruise?" Lucien demanded.
    I pointed my fork to Tamlin. "Ask him, he did it." Lucien looked from Tamlin to me and then back again. "Why does Feyre have a bruise on her neck from you?" he asked with no small amount of amusement. "I bit her," Tamlin said, not pausing as he cut his steak. "We ran into each other in the hall after the Rite.
    I'm ashamed to admit that my favorite part was a soft-core erotic sex scene that did not belong in a YA book.
    My friend assured me that the series gets better and I should continue my trip in Prythian ( the faerie land/setting) with book two, A court of Mist and Fury. By the way, isn't the map by Ink and Wonder that I got from my ShelfLoveCrate October 'Enchanted Journeys box gorgeous? I paid for the box, but you can see why my curiosity would be peaked, right?
    Series: A Court of Thorns and Roses (book 2)
    Publication Date: May 5th, 2016
    Page length: 626 pages

    Synopsys:

    Feyre survived Amarantha's clutches to return to the Spring Court—but at a steep cost. Though she now has the powers of the High Fae, her heart remains human, and it can't forget the terrible deeds she performed to save Tamlin's people.

    Nor has Feyre forgotten her bargain with Rhysand, High Lord of the feared Night Court. As Feyre navigates its dark web of politics, passion, and dazzling power, a greater evil looms—and she might be key to stopping it. But only if she can harness her harrowing gifts, heal her fractured soul, and decide how she wishes to shape her future—and the future of a world cleaved in two.

    Anyways... this book is 200 pages longer than ACOTAR ugh. Book two starts after happily ever after with Feyre now a Fey that "stole" a little bit of all the High Lord's special sauce and Tamlin keeps her literally locked in the house. There is sex, again NOT YA, and an wedding arrangement. Also we were introduced to Rhysand, High Lord of the Night Court, who helped her at the end of book one with the enchanted agreement that she would spend time with him every so often. As a 'villain' Rhys takes Feyre on her wedding day after ignoring her for months. He teaches Feyre how to read and write by copying sentences but otherwise leaving her alone again.
    Rhysand is the most handsome High Lord
    Tamlin is really the villain though because he is super controlling an keeps Feyre caged when all she wants is to continue to help rebuild Prythian and be useful. Tamlin's right hand man, Lucien, tries to help her kind of, a little, by taking her on strolls around the grounds but doesn't even stand up when Tamlin become abusive.
    Bookmark of Lucien from ShelfLoveCrate March 2018 box
    I was not a pet, not a doll, not an animal.
    I was a survivor, and I was strong.
    I would not be weak, or helpless again
    I would not, could not be broken. Tamed.
    Sarah J. Maas, A Court of Mist and Fury (A Court of Thorns and Roses, #2)

    So, through Rhysand's and Feyre's enchanted agreement he sends his ladies of the Night Court to break her out. Rhys also gives Feyre a choice on where she wants to go, and what she wants to do. Basically the exact opposite of Tamlin. She travels all over Prythian with the Night Court. Feyre's character grows A LOT. There is even MORE sex, now with Rhys instead of Tamlin and TONS of quotable lines. I dubbed book two 50 Shades of Feyre
    Night Court Girls: Mor, Feyre, Amren
    Spoiler alert: Feyre becomes Rhy's secret bride/mate and the Night Court Girls are much better sisters than Feyre's own. Wait, about them, they become Fey at the end of the story too. What?! Ok, I started to like this story better than book one, but I was really not impressed with the 180 of so many characters and NO ONE just BECOMES a Fey, your are born that way but somehow the Archeon family all gets to be immortal? What? Ok, I'm done.

    I'm not done, my friend INSISTS I have to finish the series. I HAVE to know what everyone is talking about. Its only ONE MORE BOOK, its a Trilogy. Read A Court of Wings And Ruin!
    Publication Date: May 2nd, 2017
    Page length: 699 pages

    Synopsis:

    Feyre has returned to the Spring Court, determined to gather information on Tamlin's manoeuvrings and the invading king threatening to bring Prythian to its knees. But to do so she must play a deadly game of deceit – and one slip may spell doom not only for Feyre, but for her world as well.

    As war bears down upon them all, Feyre must decide who to trust amongst the dazzling and lethal High Lords – and hunt for allies in unexpected places.

    Ok, Ok. I'm only a year behind. I'm already invested with tons of merchandise about this fandom because EVERYONE else is obsessed. Candles, Mug, bookmark, mirror, map, art print that I've acquired either because I won it in a giveaway or it came inside a book subscription box that I had paid for.  Fine, book two was better than book one and book three is the longest so maybe there'll be a lot of action. HA! There are some really funny parts in ACOWAR but its so LONG! I flew through the first part, Feyre is a savage getting back at Tamlin for keeping her locked up but the rest is long. The whole 'Mate' thing SJM likes to put in her stories is SUPER annoying. I read the word 'MATE' so many times I'll be happy if no one ever uses it again.. Mate=One True Love but its more than that. More like animal imprinting from Twilight? I don't know, super annoying. Tamlin didn't realize Feyre was already married so she played him like a violin. The middle was just a lot of planning and talking and bickering and repeat. Why couldn’t it have been more than one book? Is the author planning on telling Lucien’s journey like she did Choal’s in Tower of Dawn? If so I would’ve liked chronological books or do different POVs like A Song of Ice and Fire. The rest of the story is drawn out bickering, simmering romance, and planning. I want to watch this movie 🎥 spend two hours and be done. Not read about all the high school drama between all of the courts. UGH. Also, there was more SEX.
    That half smile danced on his mouth. “Well?”
    “As much as I’d like to see you attempt to lick off a week’s worth of dirt, sweat, and blood…” His eyes gleamed with the challenge, and I laughed again. “Normal bath, please.”
    Weird sexual tension. I'm sure it was meant to be charming or sexy, I don't know but it was distracting and unneeded. I loved the journey and seeing more of Prythian but for Fey that are 100s of years old to act like high schoolers was annoying to read. Maybe a little was necessary but again, way too long. Also the ending was not satisfying. Why did Rhys have to die and come back like Feyre? Ugh just no.


    The whole series hangs around Feyre being dependent on one man or another, either by captivity or lust. There is a lot of sex and high school drama. Some great conflict action, some quotable moments and vivid scenes. I would not recommend. There are way better stories out there. I don't understand the hype.



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    Disclosure: I understand I have a very unpopular opinion. Whether positive or negative, my blog review is my own and may differ from others opinions. This review is simply a compilation of my thoughts and opinions of this product.  If you have any questions, just post them and I'll be happy to answer as best as I can. All pictures were taken by me except the first one from Amazon. 


    **No monetary compensation was received for this review. Posts may contain affiliate or referral links. Thank you for your support!**




    Sunday, April 22, 2018

    The Last Time I Lied by Riley Sager Book Review

    This product was provided to me at no cost.  Whether positive or negative, my review is my own and may differ from others opinions. 


    The Last Time I Lied by Riley Sager



    photo from Goodreads

    Author: Riley Sager
    Where to purchase: Amazon 
    Product details

    Print Length: 384 pages
    • Publication Date: July 3, 2018
    • Sold by: Penguin Group (USA) LLC
    • Language: English
    • ASIN: B076GNTWQM
    Publisher: Dutton Books
    Edition: Kindle
    Genre: fiction, suspense, mystery, thriller, horror, women's fiction, Psychological

    I received an ARC of The Last Time I Lied from Netgalley for review purposes.



    Synopsys:

    Two Truths and a Lie. The girls played it all the time in their tiny cabin at Camp Nightingale. Vivian, Natalie, Allison, and first-time camper Emma Davis, the youngest of the group. The games ended when Emma sleepily watched the others sneak out of the cabin in the dead of night. The last she--or anyone--saw of them was Vivian closing the cabin door behind her, hushing Emma with a finger pressed to her lips.

    Now a rising star in the New York art scene, Emma turns her past into paintings--massive canvases filled with dark leaves and gnarled branches that cover ghostly shapes in white dresses. The paintings catch the attention of Francesca Harris-White, the socialite and wealthy owner of Camp Nightingale. When Francesca implores her to return to the newly reopened camp as a painting instructor, Emma sees an opportunity to try to find out what really happened to her friends.

    Yet it's immediately clear that all is not right at Camp Nightingale. Already haunted by memories from fifteen years ago, Emma discovers a security camera pointed directly at her cabin, mounting mistrust from Francesca and, most disturbing of all, cryptic clues Vivian left behind about the camp's twisted origins. As she digs deeper, Emma finds herself sorting through lies from the past while facing threats from both man and nature in the present.

    And the closer she gets to the truth about Camp Nightingale, the more she realizes it may come at a deadly price



    Main Character


    ·       Emma Davis is the main point of view character. She is battling PTSD from events that happened at summer camp when she was 13 years old. She tries to cope with her anxiety and guilt by painting and making her lost camp mates disappear in the background with each new work of art. She is still haunted by her camp-sister Vivian which spurs her to try to solve the 15 year old mystery.

    Plot


    ·      The synapsis does a pretty good job explaining what the standalone book is about. Told in present day and 15 years ago.


    Setting- Summer at Camp Nightingale in New York

    The prologue starts "This is how it begins" in italics and is told in third person point of view as we're told what is happening at Camp Nightingale. Chapter 1 and the rest of the book is told from the main character, Emma's, POV 15 years after a tragic incident. Still haunted by the disappearances of her friends and cabin mates, Emma has an opportunity to go back to Camp Nightingale after 15 years for the grand reopening to investigate for herself and hopefully get some closure. The story bounces between things that happened 15 years ago and now as Emma tries to remember the last time she lied and what all led up to the end of the camp. Everyone seems to be a suspect at one point or another, and I wasn't sure if I was even reading a reliable narrator because mental health issues were well written. This was a fast paced read and kept me interested from start to finish. The twist at the end, I did not see coming. LOVED IT.
    I assume that this is what death must feel like. Not a drift into deep slumber or a slow edge toward a warm light. Just a sudden halt.

    What did I like about the book?

    • I liked being with the main character's horror of losing 3 girls and trying to figure out what really happened 15 years ago. The characters all seemed shady and like suspects and I never really knew who to trust, including the narrator because she already admitted to being a liar. There were a few twists and the whole story was presented wonderfully

    What did I not like about the book?

    • I read an uncorrected Kindle proof and there were weird errors like random hyphens and paragraph breaks in the middle of sentences. Not really a big deal, and there wasn't anything about the actual story I didn't like except maybe the switch in POV at the beginning and end.

    Date Started/Finished :

    April 16-22, 2018 per Goodreads but I didn't really start it until after I finished my previous book. Actually took me less time.

    The center of the dial bears a motto, written in Latin. Omnes vulnerant, ultima necat. I remember the phrase from high school Latin class, although not because I excelled at the language. In fact, I was terrible at it. I remember only because it sent a chill through me when I first learned what it mean. All hours wound; the last one kills.

    Recommend?

    yes - if you like suspense thrillers or a good mystery, this book is for you.


    Rating: 5/*****


    Language level- easy adult






    Disclosure: This ebook was provided to me for free from a Netgalley wish-granted promotion. Whether positive or negative, my blog review is my own and may differ from others opinions. This review is simply a compilation of my thoughts and opinions of this book.  If you have any questions, just post them and I'll be happy to answer as best as I can.



    **No monetary compensation was received for this review. Posts may contain affiliate or referral links. Thank you for your support!**