Hunted by Meagan Spooner

Title: Hunted

Author: Meagan Spooner

Series: It’s a standalone

Publisher: HarperTeen

Pages: 374

Publication Date: March 14 2017

Genres: Retelling, fairy tale, fantasy, young adult

Goodreads: 4 Stars

Synopsis:

Beauty knows the Beast’s forest in her bones – and in her blood. Though she grew up with the city’s highest aristocrats, far from her father’s lodge, she knows that the forest holds secrets, and that her father is the only hunter who’s ever come close to discovering them.

So when her father loses his fortune and moves Yeva and her sisters back to the outskirts of town, Yeva is secretly relieved. Out in the wilderness, there’s no pressure to make idle chatter with vapid baronesses… or to submit to marrying a wealthy gentleman. But Yeva’s father’s misfortune may have cost him his mind, and when he goes missing in the woods, Yeva sets her sights on one pretty: the creature he’d been obsessively tracking just before his disappearance. The Beast. Deaf to her sister’s protests, Yeva hunts this strange creature back into his own territory – a cursed valley, a ruined castle, and a world of creatures that Yeva’s only heard about in fairy tales. A world that can bring her ruin – or salvation.

Who will survive: the Beauty, or the Beast?

Beauty and the Beast, my all time favourite.

This book has a very special place in my heart. It took me far far away into a distant land, where fairy tales come to life in an ordinary girl’s world. I loved reading this retelling, I thought it was so very well done. It was refreshing and real, I ignored all else when I reading Hunted, and I couldn’t put it down!

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Ruin and Rising by Leigh Bardugo

Title: Ruin and Rising

Author: Leigh Bardugo

Series: The Grisha (Book 3)

Publisher: Henry Holt and Company

Pages: 417

Publication Date: June 17 2014

Genres: Young adult, fantasy, magic

Goodreads: 4 stars

Synopsis:

The capital has fallen and the Darkling rules Ravka from his shadow throne.

Now the nation’s fate rests with a broken Sun Summoner, a disgraced tracker, and the shattered remnants of a once-great magical army. 

Deep in an ancient network of tunnels and caverns, a weakened Alina must submit to the dubious protection of the Apparat and the zealots who worship her as a Saint. Yet her plans lie elsewhere, with the hunt for the elusive firebird and the hope that an outlaw prince still survives.

Alina will have to forge new alliances and put aside old rivalries as she and Mal race to find the last of Morozova’s amplifiers. But as she begins to unravel the Darkling’s secrets,she reveals a past that will forever alter her understanding of the bond they share and the power she wields. The firebird is the one thing that stands between Ravka and destruction – and claiming it could cost Alina the very future she’s fighting for.

This book really took off and it was non stop action! I really enjoyed the fast pace and I was torn between wanting the Darkling to turn around and be good, I loved the way Bardugo made us have such mixed feelings about him!
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Flame in the Mist by Renee Ahdieh

 

Title: Flame in the Mist

Series: Flame in the Mist

Publisher: Hodder & Stoughton

Pages: 392

Publication Date: 16th May 2017

Genres: Fantasy, Young Adult, Historical, Japan, Retellings, Gender Bender

Synopsis:

The only daughter of a prominent Samurai, Mariko has always known that being a woman means she’s not in control of her fate. Never mind her cunning or her skills as an accomplished alchemist, Mariko was raised for one purpose only: to marry.

At just seventeen years old, Mariko is sent to the imperial palace to meet her betrothed, a man she did not choose. But the journey is cut short when her convoy is ambushed by the Black Clan – a group of bandits hired to kill Mariko before she reaches the palace. 

The lone survivor of the attack, Mariko swears revenge on those who want her dead: she infiltrates the Black Clan disguised as a peasant boy and befriends their leader. The clan warms to Mariko, impressed by her intellect and ingenuity – but as she gets closer to her enemies, Mariko uncovers a dark history of secrets that will force her to question everything she’s ever known.

Review:

** spoiler alert **

 

I adored this book! Japanese mythology, samurais, feudal Japan, is totally down my alley. With a Mulan twist, which I absolutely loved, how could I resist? I loved the fact it’s only slightly like Mulan, not as predictable but loved the similarities. But don’t get me wrong, Flame in the Mist definitely had tonnes of originality.

Warning… spoilers ahead…

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The Immortal Bind by Traci Harding

Title: The Immortal Bind

Series: Stand alone

Publisher: Harper Collins Publishers

Pages: 384

Genres: Fanatasy

Goodreads: 4 Stars

Synopsis:

The adventure of a lifetime… or two, or three

When Sara is gifted a beautiful antique chair as a wedding present, she is completely unaware that it is one of a unique pair. On the other side of the world, the chair’s twin is presented to a reclusive artist, Jon, as a birthday gift.

The two new owners are thrust into a mind-expanding adventure through the ages – medieval East Anglia, Scotland, France and India. In each instance they experience significant junctions in their lives past, to remember and redress ripples of karma they set in motion, and thwart an evil entity that still threatens their present day lives.

Their journey exposes a cursed love affair spanning one thousand years and ten thousand miles. Only the full realisation of their own short comings will prevent the tragic reoccurring outcome of their immortal bind.

Review:

I was lucky enough to receive this review copy from Harper Collins Australia. I haven’t read a Traci Harding book in years and this was so intriguing, I felt like I had to devour it slowly.

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Who’s Afraid? by Maria Lewis

Title: Who’s Afraid?

Series: Tommi Grayson (Book 1)

Publisher: Piatkus

Pages:  343

Genres: Urban fantasy, paranormal, fantasy

Goodreads: 4 Stars

Synopsis:

‘It was like my wolf had been there all along, waiting for me to tap its hand and step into the ring…’

Tommi Grayson’s never exactly been a normal girl. Bright blue hair, a mysterious past and barely controlled rage issues have a way of making a woman stand out. Yet she’s never come close to guessing who she really is…

When her mother dies, a shattered Tommi decides to track down her estranged father. Leaving Scotland for a remote corner of New Zealand, she discovers the truth of her heritage – and it’s a whole lot more than merely human.

Barely escaping with her life, now Tommi must return to her friends, pretending everything is normal while all too aware of the dangers lurking outside – and within. Worse still, something has followed her home…

With the clock ticking, can Tommi learn to control her new powers in time to save the ones she loves?

This book was so enjoyable! From page one, I was intrigued about what was going on with Tommi. Lewis has created a sassy, fun character, who speaks her mind and I really enjoyed Tommi’s point of view. Her references are funny and I couldn’t stop reading! It’s been awhile since I’ve read a werewolf book and I thoroughly enjoyed it. It was fast paced and there was always a twist lurking around the corner!

Enter Lorcan and the story really picked up! I loved the how he entered the scene and his purpose. Although it reminded me of another series, I still thoroughly enjoyed his character and their connection. As Tommi learns to adjust to her new life and skills, she seems to master them easily. Although she does ‘master’ them quickly, I appreciate how fast paced the book is. Sometimes I prefer to read a more fast paced book, a lot of it was already focused on the training and I was quite happy to get on with the plot. Lewis also explains the reason for her fast mastery of skills due to her ancestry. Tommi also is already a fighter with her Muay Thai background as well.

Overall, I really enjoyed this book! It feels like it’s been awhile since I’ve had an urban fantasy book I couldn’t put down. Now I feel like I will be looking for other urban fantasy books to read! I’m looking forward to Tommi’s next adventures in Who’s Afraid Too? Luckily, I don’t have long to wait as it comes out in January!

The Assassin’s Blade by Sarah J. Maas

Title: The Assassin’s Blade

Series: Throne of Glass (Novella/Prequel 0.1-0.5)

Publisher: Bloomsbury Children’s Books

Published: March 2014

Pages: 437

Genres: Young Adult, Fantasy

Goodreads: 4 Stars

Synopsis:

The twist of a knife, the birth of a legend…

Celaena Sardothien owes her reputation to Arobynn Hamel. He gave her a home at the Assassins’ Guild and taught her the skills she needed to survive.

Arobynn’s enemies stretch far and wide – from Adarlan’s rooftops and its filthy dens, to remote islands and hostile deserts. Celaena is duty-bound to hunt them down. But behind her assignments lies a dark truth that will seal her fate – and cut her heart in two forever…

These novellas, compiled into one book, forming the prequel to The Throne of Glass series is a must read! I have read everywhere that it should be read before Queen of Shadows, the fourth book in the series as it adds a lot of depth and understanding of what happens before Celaena Sardothien is pulled out of Endovier.

At first I thought the book was quite slow, to be honest, I couldn’t be bothered reading it all that much. But then I read somewhere that it is recommended to be before the release of Queen of Shadows, and that someone from the prequel shall be revealed, I thought; gosh I better get started! So I started the book slow, but once I got into it, I wanted to know more! I wanted to know more about Sam, the boy she loved before everything happened, and what he would be like. Definitely you will get to see him throughout the book. As I read on, The Assassin and the Pirate Lord, I could see the beginning of Celaena and Sam’s relationship, how it they were always at each other, and then slowly seeing that change as they worked together through the first novella. By then you can see hints of what Sam feels for Celaena, but she is oblivious to it.

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