How to Save a Life by S.D. Robertson | The shot of positivity I desperately needed!

For my second book of June, I went with «How to Save a Life» by S.D. Robertson and I’m so glad that I did! After picking up several books and not really feeling any of them, I craved something light, fast-paced but meaningful at the same time. And that’s exactly what I received. 

«How to Save a Life» was the shot of positivity I so desperately needed. I just wish this book had a little bit more editing done to it, as it reads like it’s meant for an older generation while the message it carries is meant for everyone, and the sooner you learn it the better it will be.

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The Age of Witches by Louisa Morgan | Beautiful writing but disappointing slow-burn romance!

As many of you know, some books are very difficult to review. I definitely struggled with «The Age of Witches» by Louisa Morgan, considering that I finished it at the beginning of May and only sitting down to finally put my thought on paper [well… on screen] on June 10th, almost one month later. 

There were many weekends when I thought “This is it! I’m writing this review!” and then not actually doing it because I couldn’t find the right words to describe how I felt about «The Age of Witches». 

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Wonderscape by Jennifer Bell | “Travel with wonder!”

The main reason why I love watching booktube videos so much is the opportunity to discover new amazing books! «Wonderscape» by Jennifer Bell is a new middle-grade sci-fi / fantasy that I first heard about from Jade @Jadeyraereads, and I was so excited to find it on NetGalley and also getting my request approved!

Currently, on Goodreads, this is not listed as part of a series, but I’d love to read more about Arthur, Ren, and Cecily, even their school and normal life shenanigans. I just miss them and want more of these characters, and hopefully more Wonderscape worlds (?!).

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The Obsidian Tower (Rooks and Ruin, #1) by Melissa Caruso | A bizarre reading experience!

At first glance, «The Obsidian Tower» has so many elements that I love in fantasy books, that’s why I was so surprised to find out that I didn’t like it. I was even more surprised when I couldn’t pinpoint what exactly was wrong or what exactly I didn’t like. 

So this review will be my attempt to discover what went wrong and hopefully give some meaningful feedback at the same time.

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Something is Killing the Children, Vol. 1 | A Spooky Graphic Novel for Adults!

Are you a fan of Graphic Novels? I love the idea of graphic novels, comics, and manga, but I can never enjoy them to the fullest potential. Graphic Novels are a lot more than just a story. They convey their message in a different way than books do, often relying on the art style and colors. While I like looking at the beautiful art, I often find that it’s not enough to substitute the storytelling of a novel.

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The Rage of Dragons(The Burning, #1) by Evan Winter | Can’t wait for the next installment!

«The Rage of Dragons» by Evan Winter, the first book in the epic African-inspired fantasy, was one of the most intimidating books on my TBR last month. [Well… together with «A Time of Courage» by John Gwynne.] After reading one African-inspired fantasy last year that I didn’t love and had to DNF half-way through, I was rather apprehensive to try again. Besides, the first book is always the most challenging to dive in – there is a new world to get accustomed with, new words, new social and magic systems.

Who would have thought that I’d be able to finish an epic fantasy book with more than 500 pages in just 2 days?! I didn’t!

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Burn by Patrick Ness | The most weird dragon book you’ll ever read!

I have a very special relationship with Patrick Ness’s books. They either break my heart in the smallest pieces [«A Monster Calls»] or leave me dumbfounded, wondering what the heck did I just read?! [«The Rest of Us Just Lives Here»]. «Burn» definitely falls more into the second category. While I liked the characters and the story more than in «The Rest of Us Just Lives Here», it was still a very weird book. 

That’s probably why I’ve been staying away from the Chaos Walking trilogy for now. I really want to love it, but I’m scared that it might be too weird for me and I won’t be able to connect to the characters the way I want to.

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Incendiary by Zoraida Córdova | Inquisition Spain, Assassin’s Creed and a new favorite YA series?

Maybe I’m not allowed to say that, but holy *** the very early parts of this story gave me huge Assassin’s Creed vibes and I was LOVING it! Okay… maybe it was the fact that there is one scene where the characters decide that roofs are the lesser crowded spaces, and use them to get to the center of the square, but like… isn’t that what you supposed to do while playing Assassin’s Creed?! Climb and jump down from all the roofs you can find?! 

And the second important point [that has nothing to do with the story] is how gorgeous this UK edition is?! Once again, the UK publishers did it much better than the US ones (sorry, guys! ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ ). I much prefer some intricate design vs. a levitating girl, even if that girl is supposed to be Renata Convida, our main character.

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The Fantastical Exploits of Gwendolyn Gray (The Chronicles of Gwendolyn Gray, #2) by B.A. Williamson | Middle Grade books are the answer to the reading slump!

Tell me honestly, do you love reading Middle Grade? I’ve been escaping into these whimsical worlds since March and loving every single experience! No other genre can make me feel so warm and fuzzy inside. So, of course, I had to jump on the chance of reading the sequel in the middle-grade series by B.A. Williamson. 

The first book, «The Marvelous Adventures of Gwendolyn Gray» came out in 2018 and I had a lot of fun trying to come up with adjectives to describe Gwendolyn that would start with the first letters of rainbow colors. I know! I have the craziest ideas sometimes! 😀

Since Gwendolyn lives in a Gray world that has no colors, besides her wonderful red hair, I thought it would be appropriate to bring some color in her life that way.

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5 Popular Fantasy Series I want to binge-read!

Hi, guys! I hope you’re staying safe and healthy and reading tons of books! [or not, as long as you’re doing something equally pleasing and exciting]. 

Usually, Tuesdays are reserved for Top Ten Tuesday meme, but this week I wasn’t really feeling the theme and decided to explore other memes! So here I am, joining in on Top 5 Tuesday instead! 😀 Follow the link to the Bionic Bookworm Blog to find out more about this weekly meme! 

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Gardens of the Moon (Malazan Book of the Fallen #1) by Steven Erikson | Will I continue reading this series?

The books in the Malazan Book of the Fallen series tend to be glamoured by this supernatural complexity that justifies all the negative thoughts and reviews the books get. I read some reviews on Goodreads of the first book – «Gardens of the Moon» just to see the most common adjectives thrown at it by the community, here is what I found:

  1. complex;
  2. unique;
  3. confusing;
  4. intimidating;
  5. rich; and
  6. demanding. 

This is what readers say about the masterpiece of Epic Fantasy. But do I agree with them?

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The Diviners (The Diviners, #1) by Libba Bray | An amazing cast of characters & entertaining roaring twenties!

Oh, man! «The Diviners» was such a roller coaster of emotions! 

The beginning of the book wasn’t as exciting as I hoped it would be, which translated into me starting this book twice. For the second time as I passed that first chapter (prologue) about the party and spirit summoning, I met Evie and fell in love with her character. The book just kept getting better and better from there. However, by the end, I was started to feel tired of reading the same story and the last 100 pages took me a couple of days to finish.

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Wicked Saints (Something Dark and Holy, #1) by Emily A. Duncan | Feeling disappointed by my most anticipated book of last year!

«Wicked Saints», the first book in Something Dark and Holy trilogy, was published in April last year. I remember it being one of my most anticipated releases at the time when I first saw it on NetGalley and the fact that it was inspired by Eastern European culture immediately drew my attention. As someone from Eastern Europe, I often find these books very nostalgic to read, as they tend to reference a lot of Slavic folklore or events that I used to study in my history classes. 

Emily A. Duncan said in one of her interviews that Leigh Bardugo was her favorite YA author, and you can easily see by the way the book is written where she drew her inspiration from.  «Wicked Saints» reminded me of the Darkling, Mal and Alina – not the plot of events but the characters and their interactions. 

Maybe every single YA fantasy inspired by Eastern European culture will always remind me of The Grisha trilogy now? 

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Starsight (Skyward, #2) by Brandon Sanderson | Continuing my journey through Brandon Sanderson YA books!

Here we go again, talking about yet another Brandon Sanderson book! 2020 is going to be a very Sanderson heavy year and I’m loving it so far. I’m yet to dip my toes into the Cosmere world, but I will be starting «Elantris» very soon as I want it read before the live show of Cosmerealong, which should take place sometime mid-March. 

I have now successfully read and loved all of his YA Sci-Fi books, starting with the Reckoners trilogy and finishing with the 2nd installment in the Skyward series. It feels good to finally be able to cross these books off my never-ending TBR list. 

This review might contain minor spoilers for the first book – «Skyward», so if you haven’t read that one, I’d recommend reading the book (and my review *cheeky self-promotion included*) first and then come back to this post! 🙂

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Elevation by Stephen King | One of the best short books!

I’m slowly dipping my toes into Stephen King’s works. Last year I tried his dystopian novel «Cell» and this year I decided to start with one of the shorter books – «Elevation». I’m still avoiding his horror books, even though «Elevation» is classified as Horror and even won Goodreads awards in the horror category (shocking!) you’re safe to read it because it’s nothing more than a Fiction book with elements of fantasy? sci-fi? something out of the ordinary. 

This was an outstanding story and it instantly made it to my “favorites of 2020” list!

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