Top 5 Wednesday: Books you’ve read because of blogging/Booktube

Happy Wednesday everyone, here is another Top 5 Wednesday and the topic is,

September 27th: Books You’ve Read Because of Booktube/Blogging/etc.
–Discuss the books you’ve picked up because you’ve heard of them in the online book community or platform you use

Top 5 Wednesday is a group in Goodreads and was formerly created by Lainey at gingerreadslainey and is now done by Sam from Thoughts on Tomes. It is open to everyone.

Red Rising series by Pierce Brown

While this maybe cheating because this book was on my TBR before blogging, it wasn’t until several bloggers recommended it to me because of my love of sci fi. It was an amazing book and I hopefully try to finish the series.

The works of V.E. Schwab

I decided to put all of her books on here. It started with This Savage Song, loved that and than I read Vicious which was amazing and all of a sudden she became one of my auto-buy authors. She comes up with these brilliant worlds and characters that you just want to keep reading her work.

The works of Adam Silvera

Earlier this year I read More Happy Than Not, which was an amazing book. I heard so many good things about his work and I think I read it when History is All You Left Me was coming out. Both of those books were amazing. I wanted to get They Both Die at the End but it was sold out at Boston Teen Author Festival, but I was still able to meet him.

Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo

I read Shadow and Bone, and I wasn’t a huge fan of the book, so at first I wasn’t interested in reading Six of Crows. Than I kept hearing so many good things that I had to check it out and it was amazing. A great plot with extremely well done characters.

Illuminae by Jay Kristoff and Amie Kaufman

I remember hearing about this book when Gemina, the sequel was about to come out . I was also afraid to read it because how hyped up it was, and the book was worth the hype. Even if the book is written unconventional it still had an engaging plot.

Those are the books I read because of Blogging/Booktube. What books were you introduced to because of the bookish community? Let me know in the comments below!

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Hype or Like Friday: All’s Fair in War and Magic: Magical recommendations

Happy Friday everyone,

Here is another Hype or Like Friday, the theme for June is All’s Fair in War and Magic

And the Book of the Month is:

Hype or Like Friday is a meme created by Jillian, Larkin, and Britt to discuss about hyped books and see if they’re hyped up or not. There would be book of the month that you can read, and the post your review for it on the end of the month, then rate it whether it’s a hype it or like it.
June 16th – Magical Recommendations… What fantasy books do you recommend that revolve around magic?

A Darker Shade of Magic by: V.E. Schwab

I am two books into this series and I love it so far. The idea of different London’s is amazing. Kell and Lila are some of my favorite characters. I also can’t wait to finish the series with A Conjuring of Light.

The Heir Chronicles by Cinda Williams Chima

A sort of underrated series its a magical world set within a modern setting, I am about the read the third book and I am loving it so far.

Truthwitch by Susan Dennard

One of my favorite books I have read this year. I also love the magical world it is set in. Safi is one of my favorite female characters, and even the supporting cast is really good.

Falling Kingdoms by: Morgan Rhodes

While many are very split about the Falling Kingdoms series, I actually kinda like. While it may come across as Game of Thrones lite it does however get better as the books go along.

The Young Elites series by: Marie Lu

By one of my favorite authors, it deals with a young girl journey into villainy. The magic is sort of seen as a mutation and those with it would be arrested. While the final book was just okay, it is still a great trilogy.

Those are my magical recommendations. Do you have any magical recommendations? Let me know in the comments below.

A Gathering of Shadows by: V.E. Schwab

Summary:

It has been four months since a mysterious obsidian stone fell into Kell’s possession. Four months since his path crossed with Delilah Bard. Four months since Prince Rhy was wounded, and since the nefarious Dane twins of White London fell, and four months since the stone was cast with Holland’s dying body through the rift–back into Black London.

Now, restless after having given up his smuggling habit, Kell is visited by dreams of ominous magical events, waking only to think of Lila, who disappeared from the docks as she always meant to do. As Red London finalizes preparations for the Element Games–an extravagant international competition of magic meant to entertain and keep healthy the ties between neighboring countries–a certain pirate ship draws closer, carrying old friends back into port.

And while Red London is caught up in the pageantry and thrills of the Games, another London is coming back to life. After all, a shadow that was gone in the night will reappear in the morning. But the balance of magic is ever perilous, and for one city to flourish, another London must fall.

The Review:

Earlier this year, I had the great pleasure of reading and loving A Darker Shade of Magic, so of course I wanted to continue the story and the characters of both Kell and Lila.

The story picks up four months after the events of the first book and both Kell and Lila are on their separate ways. Lila is a pirate with her own crew on the Night Spire and is aided by Captain Alucard Emery, who acts as a mentor towards Lila throughout the book. Lila also begins to develop her magical abilities and Emery tries to get her to channel her new abilities.

Kell is back with Rhy and their brotherly bond is stronger, especially after being bound to him at the end of the previous book. You really see how they are bounded to one another and it makes their relationship a lot stronger and see each as brothers. But Rhys’s parents, the King and Queen still see Kell as a servant, which also affected his relationship with Rhy. The book added a lot of Rhy chapters, which really aided in his character development, and seeing the Kell/Rhy relationship from his perspective.

The main plot of the book is dealing primarily with the Essen Tach, a magical tournament, which pits magicians from different Londons against one another. Both Lila and Kell spend a majority of the book training for that tournament and both have different reasons for entering. It is because of that tournament they were finally reunited.

Both Kell and Lila spend a majority of the book apart from one another, which was one of my main gripes with it, mainly because I love both of them together, but I think it was needed to further develop them separately. But I did like the scene when Kell found out he was fighting Lila in the middle of the fight.

I also really liked the concept of the Essen Tach tournament, and you got see many of the different Londons and how magic is used in those Londons. There was also the development of Holland, while it wasn’t a huge shocker that he was still alive but he spent most of his time planning his return. even though his chapters were very brief it did explain a lot about his character. Also the climax was also really good and it had so many twists and turns. It also had a really a really good cliffhanger, that makes me so excited to read A Conjuring of Light.

It would also feel like I am repeating myself with how great the writing. But the writing was extremely well done, and VE Schwab keeps proving why she is one of my favorite authors. Every word she makes is extremely well done and she also does a good job at keeping the pace up. I was never bored when reading the book.

In the end, Gathering of Shadows was a really good sequel, and while it was not as plot driven as A Darker Shade of Magic, it did a good job at developing characters that I already love and also the world it is set in.

Grade: 4.5/5

Hype or Like Friday: All’s Fair in War and Magic: Fantastical Magics

Happy Friday everyone,

Here is another Hype or Like Friday, the theme for June is All’s Fair in War and Magic

And the Book of the Month is:

Hype or Like Friday is a meme created by Jillian, Larkin, and Britt to discuss about hyped books and see if they’re hyped up or not. There would be book of the month that you can read, and the post your review for it on the end of the month, then rate it whether it’s a hype it or like it.

June 9th – Fantastical Magics… What are some of your favorite magical systems?

The Wizarding World of Harry Potter

Yeah, I know this is an obvious choice, but come on who can’t love the world of Harry Potter. I would have loved to attend Hogwarts, play Quidditch, and become an Auror.

The Heir Chronicles

While this is a very underrated series, it does have a good magical system , in which each child is born with a wizard stone or a warrior stone in their heart.

A Darker Shade of Magic

The idea of multiple Londons is amazing. Also with each different London has a different magical system in that London.

Mistborn 

The world of Mistborn is amazing. It is basically so good. I also love how magic is infused into the political system. I think I may reread the series again.

Those are my favorite magical systems. What are your magical systems? Let me know in the comments below.

 

Top 5 Wednesday: Favorite SFF on your TBR

Happy Wednesday everyone, and here is another Top 5 Wednesday and the topic is,
April 5th: Top SFF Books on Your TBR *Booktube SFF Awards Babble Crossover Topic!*
–Talk about the science fiction and fantasy books you want to read ASAP!

Top 5 Wednesday is a group in Goodreads and was formerly created by Lainey at gingerreadslainey and is now done by Sam from Thoughts on Tomes. It is open to everyone.

As I always say, science fiction and fantasy are always my go to for reading and they always have great stories and characters

The Fate of Flames by Sarah Raughley

From the premise it sounds like cool new version of Sailor Moon meets Buffy with a prophecy element. I keep seeing it at bookstores, I always pick it up then out it down. I may actually will try to read the book.

A Gathering of Shadows/A Conjuring of Light by VE Schwab

I read A Darker Shade of Magic earlier this year and loved it and I want to see how the story continues. I have heard nothing but good things about the series and the author so I hope it won’t disappoint.

Wintersong by S. Jae-Jones

From what I was told it is a retelling of the movie Labyrinth, and I have heard some good things about it from the bookish community.

The Long Way to a Small Angry Planet by Becky Chambers

I was told since I was a fan of Firefly, this would be a book for me. I always like the ragtag group of people going around and kicking ass in space.

A Daughter of Smoke and Bone by Laini Taylor

This is a book that has been on my TBR for a long time and I know she has another book out but I feel that I need to read it. I heard a lot of good things about the book and I will be sure to read it when I have the time.

Those are the SFF books on my TBR. What SFF books are on your TBR? Let me know in the comments below.

 

 

Top 5 Wednesday: Favorite Science Fiction and Fantasy Books

Happy Wednesday everyone, and here is a Top 5 Wednesday and the topic is:

March 8th – Favorite Science Fiction & Fantasy Books *BooktubeSFF Awards Crossover Topic!*
–In collaboration with the BooktubeSFF Awards, talk about your favorite science fiction and fantasy books of all time!

Top 5 Wednesday is a group in Goodreads and was formerly created by Lainey at gingerreadslainey and is now done by Sam from Thoughts on Tomes. It is open to everyone.

Science fiction and fantasy books are usually my go-to genres that I love reading.

Disclaimer: What I won’t put on the list because I feel I talked about them a lot already: Harry Potter, A Song of Ice and Fire, Ready Player One, and Lord of the Rings. Those are very obvious choices to me and I want to discuss other books I read.

Star Wars: The Thrawn Trilogy by Timonty Zahn

I know it is not in continuity any more but I strongly recommend this series to any Star Wars fan because it does give us a glimpse of the expanded universe, and also one of my favorite Star Wars villains Admiral Thrawn.

A Darker Shade of Magic by: V.E. Schwab

I could also put other V.E. Schwabs books on the list as well, but this is one of my favorites. I love the use of magic and the different Londons that was introduced to this world. Kell and Lila are some of my favorite characters, and I want to see where the story takes them.

The Illuminae files by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff

A very unconventional, unlike anything that I have ever read, in the best way possible. While the format may put some people off for a bit, it is very worth it. It is action packed, has great developed characters, and a great story.

Red Rising series by Pierce Brown

I am currently reading Golden Son, at the moment and I am enjoying it very much. Red Rising was an amazing book that I would like to call The Hunger Games in space. Red Rising was one of my favorite books I read last year, and I am so glad that I am continuing  the series.

Six of Crows duology by Leigh Bardugo

Another one of my favorite books, the Six of Crows duology is one of my favorite series. It also has one of the best ensembles I have read in YA, which reminded me a lot of the crew from Firefly. It has a great plot, well written and developed characters, and it is also a heist novel which is always good.

Those are my Top 5 science fiction and fantasy books. What are your favorite science fiction and fantasy novels? Let me know in the comments below.

 

A Darker Shade of Magic by VE Schwab

Summary:

Kell is one of the last travelers–magicians with a rare, coveted ability to travel between parallel universes connected by one magical city.

There’s Grey London, dirty and boring, without any magic, and with one mad King–George III. Red London, where life and magic are revered–and where Kell was raised alongside Rhy Maresh, the roguish heir to a flourishing empire. White London–a place where people fight to control magic and the magic fights back, draining the city to its very bones. And once upon a time, there was Black London. But no one speaks of that now.

Officially, Kell is the Red traveler, ambassador of the Maresh empire, carrying the monthly correspondences between the royals of each London. Unofficially, Kell is a smuggler, servicing people willing to pay for even the smallest glimpses of a world they’ll never see. It’s a defiant hobby with dangerous consequences, which Kell is now seeing firsthand.

Fleeing into Grey London, Kell runs into Delilah Bard, a cut-purse with lofty aspirations. She robs him, saves him from a deadly enemy, and finally forces Kell to spirit her to another world for a proper adventure.

Now perilous magic is afoot, and treachery lurks at every turn. To save all of the worlds, they’ll first need to stay alive.

The Review:

With A Conjuring of the Light being released, and also as a new fan of V.E. Schwab (her two other books I have read was Vicious and This Savage Song), I felt a need to read this book series because I have heard great things about and it definitely lived up to the hype.

What I love about her writing style is how descriptive everything is, every single word means something, and adds to the world building, in which multiple London  exist, which is already a great concept in itself.

Kell, is a erand boy for the King and Queen of Red London, where magic is worshiped and has to travel between London’s in order to do so. It is while he is traveling through London’s he meets Lila, or becomes a victim on Lila’s theft, and then the two go on an adventure.

I love Kell and Lila, and what strikes me about V.E Schwab’s writing is how she writes characters interactions with each other, without having a romantic aspect seem forced. They also worked well together with Lila using her skills as thief and Kell using his skills with magic

A lot of the supporting characters are also great like, Prince Rhys, Kell’s “brother”. While Kell was adopted into the royal family, not much is given about his life before that. But Rhys and Kell’s relationship is also really well done, while we don’t see much of Rhys at least until towards the end of the book, but you still get a sense of their relationship throughout the book.

Another set of supporting are the villains, the Dane twins who are trying to take over all of the London’s with the use of a stone that both Lila and Kell has with them. They were great villains, even if they didn’t get as much development as they should have. But boy were they evil.

While the plot of the book is a slow burn, but it is a good slow burn which does a good job at developing the characters and the world around them and makes you care about what happens to the characters. The different London’s were very good and I want to see more of them.

In the end, A  Darker Shade of Magic was a great first book in what hopefully will be a great series. As a fan of V.E. Schwab’s writing it always kept me wanting more and seeing how the story continues.

Grade: 5/5