Red Queen – A Review

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Title:                   Red Queen
Author:              Victoria Aveyard
Genre:                Science Fiction, Dystopian YA
Topics:                Kingdom, Superficial Powers
Publisher:          Harper Teen
Published on:    July 3rd, 2015
Pages:                  388
Rating:                ★★★
Formats:             Paperback, Hardback, Kindle
Short Review:   Fighting Kingdoms, Magical powers, detestable villains, love triangles and a bit of everything for a fantasy fanatic.
“Anyone can betray anyone.”

#NMBookReview


The similarity between Red Queen and Hunger games in uncanny! So much of this book reminds me of Katniss, and later of Joffrey and his evil mother, the queen; Cersei. I would’ve liked it much more if it weren’t for all the similar plot lines. That being said, Aveyard definitely walked in the zone with a strong debut novel leaving plenty of us hooked and anticipating the series.

I picked up the book for all the hype over on Instagram (read bookstagram) and the mesmerizing cover, I hadn’t known then it was a dystopian novel, only that it was YA fantasy, I’m glad it turned out better than expected.

Victoria builds a strong female protagonist who struggles to fit in and ends up realizing how that never would be possible. The dystopian world of Red Queen series is divided into two sides, the Red and the Silver, the color of their blood and later reveals those who aren’t neither or both?

The writing is brilliant for a young debut author, better than most debut YA fantasy novels but feels a bit too descriptive sometimes, especially in the later installments of the series. There are plenty of Characters to hate and admire, all with powers and secrets of their own, but that’s not the best part, the best is the plot twist that comes about half way into the series, I loved how it was unexpected (was for me) and cleverly played. Usually, the story before the twist seems dragged but this wasn’t the case for Red Queen, it’s interesting throughout.

The kingdom keeps expanding, houses keeps evolving, love interests develop, characters gradually grow complex ( mostly the main characters ), revolution against revolution, blood against blood, superficial powers against masterminds, battles, and challenges, the commoners stand against the elite in power, and the poor despairing Mare Barrow goes from a rat in the scum scheming in desperation for bread and water to become the face of power within a day.

I’d recommend it to anyone who enjoyed The Hunger Games, you’d enjoy discovering who the lightning girl is and what the silencers can do. You’d find out about strongarm’s strength and the magic of a magnetron, of all the colors of the houses and their command on specific powers.

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Synopsis


This is a world divided by blood – red or silver.The Reds are commoners, ruled by a Silver elite in possession of god-like superpowers. And to Mare Barrow, a seventeen-year-old Red girl from the poverty-stricken Stilts, it seems like nothing will ever change.

The Reds are commoners, ruled by a Silver elite in possession of god-like superpowers. And to Mare Barrow, a seventeen-year-old Red girl from the poverty-stricken Stilts, it seems like nothing will ever change.

That is until she finds herself working in the Silver Palace. Here, surrounded by the people she hates the most, Mare discovers that, despite her red blood, she possesses a deadly power of her own. One that threatens to destroy the balance of power.

Fearful of Mare’s potential, the Silvers hide her in plain view, declaring her a long-lost Silver princess, now engaged to a Silver Prince. Despite knowing that one misstep would mean her death, Mare works silently to help the Red Guard, a militant resistance group, and bring down the Silver regime.

But this is a world of betrayal and lies, and Mare has entered a dangerous dance – Reds against Silvers, prince against a prince, and Mare against her own heart.

A Court of Wings and Ruins – A Review

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Title
: A Court of Wings and Ruin
Commonly Known as ACOWAR

AuthorSarah J. Maas
Author of Throne of Glass Series

GenreFantasy Fiction

Pages: 705

Rating: ⭐⭐⭐

 

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My Review

A Court of Wings and Ruins is the third (and the worst so far) installment in A Court of Thorns and Roses series of six. I’ve loved the first book; A Court of Thorns and Rosesand the second; A court of Mist and Fury.

If you haven’t already read the first two book, here’s a quick recap, if you have then you may skip the next paragraph.

Feyre is a hunter that kills a Faerie to survive and then is taken captive by the High Lord Tamlin to the Spring Court of Prythian; the Faerie Realm, to pay for the life she’s taken. There she’s welcomed as a guest and less as a prisoner and meets her new best friend; Lucien, later she falls for Tamlin and discovers that Prythian is under a curse. The Faerie Realm is almost destroyed as Feyre fights Amarantha and free not just his beloved but the rest of the Prythian as well. Later she learns that she’s bound to Rhysand, the High lord of the Night Court and eventually falls for him too. Meanwhile, Tamlin acts overprotectively and drives Feyre away, she runs off to the Night Court and gets sold out to Hybern; the evil of them all. Hybern ruins all of Feyre’s dreams and turns both her human sisters into Fae, she also looses her High Lord and mate and is taken back to the Spring Court by Tamlin who she now despises for trading her sisters and their safety to Hybern. The third book starts from when Feyra is in Spring Court and plotting against her former betrothed and Hybern. 

This book is 700 pages long and I was bored for at least the half of it. Mind that I like Sarah’s writing but ACOWAR was nothing like the first two books, it was slow and dragged and I felt that it was very repetitive. Not to forget the cringeworthy overinclusive sex scenes. I did enjoy the steamy Feyre and Tamlin/Rhysand in the first two books but as the story proceeds it just made me furious how they could manage to be so horny in the middle of all the chaos and the life-ending situations. By the end of 300 ish pages, I was furious as the story was just revolving and not proceeding at all. Emphasizing again and again over the characters and their strengths which didn’t make them sound strong impact made them look the opposite like the author is trying to sell them.The last few

The last few chapters, however, were great, the war and the details were beautifully put but I don’t see the point of dragging the book to seven hundred something pages for it, it could’ve easily been a 500 pages book and would’ve been more interesting and thrilling. There were also some plot holes unlike in the earlier books, a lot of new characters were introduced and I loved them all but I wish the story had more of it, it just revolved around the same old Mor, Azriel, Feyre, Lucien, Cassion, Rhysand… We meet the High Lords of all the other courts and well that’s it, just meet them, briefly. There is an interesting twist with Lucien which is one thing I’m looking forward to in the next installment, I also wish they talked more of the Firebird and Elain was also featured more.

Overall the experience wasn’t worth at all, I anticipated this book SO much over the past few months that when I started reading it I was absolutely disappointed. ACOMAF took me a day or two to finish but this took me six and there were parts where I just skimmed through a page and skipped lines to read dialogues, I even forced myself to finish off a chapter which hardly happens in the middle of a fantasy series, it’s almost impossible. Only the last couple of chapters comprising of about 200 pages was thrilling and enjoyable like a usual J.Maas.  I also feel like the story could’ve ended here, I don’t really like how they’re going to drag it just for the sake of making it commercial.

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Quoting from ACOWAR

“My rage had become a living thing inside my chest, an echoing heartbeat that soothed me to sleep and stirred me to waking.”  

“And will you come with me; On this adventure – and all the rest?…Always” 

“Kindness can thrive even amongst cruelty.” 

“We’re all a broken, in our own ways – In places, no one might see.” 

“When you erupt, girl, make sure it is felt across worlds.” 

“Night Triumphant – and the Stars Eternal. If he was the sweet, terrifying darkness, I was the glittering light that only his shadows could make clear.”

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Synopsis

A nightmare, I’d told Tamlin. I was the nightmare.

Feyre has returned to the Spring Court, determined to gather information on Tamlin’s maneuverings 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.

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Other Books From the Series

#1   A Court of Thorns & Roses – May 2015
#2   A Court of Mist & Fury – May 2016
#3   A Court of Wings & Ruins – May 2017

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More from the Author

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Similar to the Series

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An Ember in the Ashes – A Review

20560137.jpgTITLE: An Ember in the Ashes

AUTHOR: Sabaa Tahir

Series: An Ember in the Ashes

GENRE: YA Fantasy / Romance

PAGES: 446

RATING ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

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Quotes from  AEITA

 

“Fear is only your enemy if you allow it to be.” 

“You are an ember in the ashes, Elias Veturius. You will spark and burn, ravage and destroy. You cannot change it. You cannot stop it.” 

“I’d rather die than live with no mercy, no honor, no soul.” 

“There are two kinds of guilt: the kind that drowns you until you’re useless, and the kind that fires your soul to purpose.” 

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Synopsis

Laia is a slave. Elias is a soldier. Neither is free.

Under the Martial Empire, defiance is met with death. Those who do not vow their blood and bodies to the Emperor risk the execution of their loved ones and the destruction of all they hold dear.

It is in this brutal world, inspired by ancient Rome, that Laia lives with her grandparents and older brother. The family ekes out an existence in the Empire’s impoverished backstreets. They do not challenge the Empire. They’ve seen what happens to those who do.

But when Laia’s brother is arrested for treason, Laia is forced to make a decision. In exchange for help from rebels who promise to rescue her brother, she will risk her life to spy for them from within the Empire’s greatest military academy.

There, Laia meets Elias, the school’s finest soldier—and secretly, its most unwilling. Elias wants only to be free of the tyranny he’s being trained to enforce. He and Laia will soon realize that their destinies are intertwined—and that their choices will change the fate of the Empire itself.

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My Review

Very few stories actually start from page 1 and even fewer maintain the thrill and anticipation till the end, An Ember in the Ashes is one of the best Crime Fantasy I’ve ever read with an exceptionally strong character line and plot.

The story starts when Laia decides to fight back for her brother, her family and goes through torture, adventure, manipulation and a lot that we weren’t ready for. There are so many other characters in the series that I love and hate, friendships and relationships and also magic.

The commandant is one of the best features of the series, reminds me of Umbridge but exceeds in cruelty by at least 10 times and oh boy will you hate her, but that’s not even the start of it, there’s war in every corner of the Empire and Magic and Rebels and Scholars and tribes…

Sabaa doesn’t deprive us of any fun and thrill and writes POV of all the characters, gotta love her for that. oh and she isn’t merciful at all, the author would make you sob and fear and Love and hope and then just take it all back in an instant but at the same time leaving you craving for so much more.

I don’t remember the last time I enjoyed the series so much, I tried not giving out any spoilers but then the review doesn’t do justice to the book at all.

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Throne of Glass – A Review

13519397.jpgTITLE
Throne of Glass

AUTHOR
Sarah J. Maas

Series
Throne of Glass # 1

GENRE
YA Fantasy / Romance

RATING ⭐⭐⭐⭐

page-breakh.jpgQuotes from Throne of Glass

Meet Celaena Sardothien.
Beautiful. Deadly.
Destined for greatness.

❤“Libraries were full of ideas–perhaps the most dangerous and powerful of all weapons.”
❤“Shall I gag you, or are you capable of being silent without my assistance?”
❤“Second place is a nice title for the first loser.”
❤“You could rattle the stars,” she whispered. “You could do anything if you only dared.”
❤“Some people just need a high-five. In the face. With my knives.”

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Synopsis

In the dark, filthy salt mines of Endovier, an eighteen-year-old girl is serving a life sentence. She is a trained assassin, the best of her kind, but she made a fatal mistake. She got caught.

Young Captain Westfall offers her a deal: her freedom in return for one huge sacrifice. Celaena must represent the prince in a to-the-death tournament—fighting the most gifted thieves and assassins in the land. Live or die, Celaena will be free. Win or lose, she is about to discover her true destiny. But will her assassin’s heart be melted?

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My Review

Sarah J. Maas made my favorite authors’ list from the ACOTAR series and I wanted to indulge in more of her fantastical worlds so I started the TOG when the Empire of Storms came out last year. The series is well hyped and I knew I wouldn’t be disappointed at least and boy was I right.

Although I felt a bit downstep while reading Throne of Glass but give it chance guys, she started it when she was 16! and now that I’m reading Crown of Midnight ( second book of the series) I feel how Maas has so much to offer, the ACOTAR and ACOMAF proves that the writer has grown so much since.

The story starts with Sardothien, a character I fell in love with since I read the prequel to the series, and how she is rescued from Endovier to fight for the crown prince. Endovier is a barbaric prison which not just physically tortures but mentally breaks down its prisoners, Caleana’s year in the horrific vast also costs her, but what?

The king of Adarlan is a cruel, cruel man and have conquered Erilea forcefully. Most of the Erilea despise their monstrous king, and so does Caleana, but she fights for the crown prince nevertheless, for her freedom. But she isn’t alone, and Dorian; the crown price isn’t the only one mesmerized by Celeana, she managed to intimate the captain of the royal guard as well.

Celeana is an assassin, all her life she worked for Arobynn Hamel; the assassin-king, and then was sent to a nightmare of a prison camp, now she’s in the Glass Castle representing the crown prince and fighting off death till she’s the king’s champion.

But Celeana isn’t the only one sponsored for the deathly competition, there are numerous other soldiers, warriors, thieves and even beasts that would be a part of the fatal games. Sooner than our heroine expected, she starts questioning her choices and decisions.

We also expect romance, since J.Maas knows how to please her readers, but who is the romance between? The assassin and the royal family are not the only players in the series, there’s Fae, magical creatures of the ancient history, and of course magic.

Expect blood, blade, love, battle, and indulge in a  fight for the freedom. We know Celeana doesn’t die, but she sure can be sent back to Endovier or tortured, or worse, she could be bound to serve another master.

  • What does Celeane lose in Endovier?
  • Does Celeana beat them all to become King’s Champion?
  • What kind of monsters and Magical creatures lure around Erilea?
  • Who does Caleana fall for, The royal or the Noble?

Well, Read Throne of Glass to experience all the magic… There’s soon to be Series out as well, watch the trailer here.

page-breakh.jpgOther books in the Throne of Glass Series

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The Assassin’s Blade – A Review

163ed178e195986472b56310add33be8TITLE
The Assassin’s Blade
Novella from Throne of Glass Series

AUTHOR
Sarah J. Maas
Author of Throne of Glass Series

GENRE
Thriller/Fantasy Fiction

RATING ⭐⭐⭐⭐

page-breakh.jpgQuotes from The Assassin’s Blade

❤“She was fire, she was darkness, she was dust and blood and shadow.”

❤“I can wait,” he said thickly, kissing her collarbone. “We have all the time in the world.”

❤“The silence was suddenly too charged, his face too beautiful in the light.”

❤“Rain continued beating against the hall windows, a distant reminder that there was still a world around them.”

❤“If you can learn to endure pain, you can survive anything. Some people learn to embrace it- to love it. Some endure it through drowning it in sorrow, or by making themselves forget. Others turn it into anger.”

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Synopsis

Celaena Sardothien is Adarlan’s most feared assassin. As part of the Assassin’s Guild, her allegiance is to her master, Arobynn Hamel, yet Celaena listens to no one and trusts only her fellow killer-for-hire, Sam. In these action-packed novellas – together in one edition for the first time – Celaena embarks on five daring missions. They take her from remote islands to hostile deserts, where she fights to liberate slaves and seeks to avenge the tyrannous. But she is acting against Arobynn’s orders and could suffer an unimaginable punishment for such treachery. Will Celaena ever be truly free? Explore the dark underworld of this kick-ass heroine to find out.

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Review

When I started this book, it was only to get a better insight on Celaena Sardothien’s Character, which it did, but not just that. The Assassin’s Blade is a back story of the Throne of Glass Series, it compiles all 4 Novellas published in one and another story in the end. Overall, it was a remarkable experience reading it, there’s thriller, romance, drama and a little bit of Sarah J. Maas in each page of the story.

The story starts off easy and paces slowly as you progress. I personally felt like its going to be just one other book, like its not that much of a read, but then it started and woah is it intense!200_s

Assassin Blade takes you to many places and you meet many people, each magical in their own way, each intense and throbbing than the other. I love how strongly and swiftly Sarah makes us fall in love with her characters, it’s impossible to not feel they’re real, I have such strong feelings and imagination in my mind for all them Assassins. Anyway, there are many characters that you’ll love and hate in the book, namely:

Sardothien – Our knight and fighter
Sam – The handsome guy that breaks our heart
Lysandra – That necessary Bitch
Ainsel – The girl you either absolutely Love or Absolutely hate
Arobynn – Well can I say Bellatrix? But no he’s not all bad 😉 For Vampire Diaries fans – He’s close to Daemon (close I said)

There are more characters, the pirate and the mute master and Ben, who dies, btw. Did I mention Celaena is head over heels crazy in love in this book? oh wait, that’s not a spoiler so don’t just freak out on me yet. But just so I don’t give out spicy details, let’s leave you hanging with these thoughts —

  • Who killed Ben and Why?
  • Which Character does our Kickass Heroine fall for? A-B-R-S-shhh 
  • Is the Mute Master (of Assassin’s) Sardothien’s  Friend or Enemy?
  • We know Sardothien isn’t going to die, but who does she kill to survive?

Well Read The Assassin’s Blade to find out!
A Throne of Glass Series by SARAH J MAAS – Book#0.5

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Other Books from the Throne of Glass Series
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More from the Author

 

Check out my Review on the Above Books :
#1   A Court of Thorns & Roses   –    May2015
#2   A Court of Mist & Fury         –   May2016

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Similar Series : The Greisha by Leigh Bardugo!

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Buy The Assassin’s Blade NOW!
(International)
Hardcopy $18.81
Softcopy $9.44

(Pakistan)
Softcopy PKR 998