Girls of Paper and Fire: Review

girls

 

336 pages
Expected publication: November 6th 2018 by Jimmy Patterson Books
Thank you to Edelweiss for providing the E-ARC.
WARNING-This book contains sexual abuse, abusive language and the death of an animal (sad face)
I have to be honest, I wasn’t expecting much from this book. The plot reminded me a lot of a mix between The Hundredth Queen, The Selection and other books with plots that involve girls being chosen as companions to a royal. But from the very first pages, I knew I was in for something unique.
Lei is chosen as a Paper Girl, a sort of courtesan to the Demon King. She goes, but not without a fight. Soon after arriving she realizes she must play the part if she wants to survive. But that’s hard to do when you begin to develop feelings for a fellow Paper. She doesn’t hide her emotions well, which causes major issues with the king, who is basically a rapist, so trigger warning there, everyone.
To quickly give a summary about the world, which was inspired by Malaysia much to my delight. There are the demon Moon castes which are hybrid animals people, the Steel Caste which is the middle ground and then paper which has no demon qualities at all.
The writing, the world-building, and the characters were all on point. Though, I have to say the plot kind of took a 360 at one point, making the first half drag a bit and seem sort of pointless. But it all came together and didn’t jarr me too much.
If you’ve been dreaming of an Asian inspired fantasy with a “love, despite the world falling apart around us” theme and girl power, this is the one.  I seriously hope a book sub box does this in November because I cannot wait to stroke the beautiful cover like the weirdo I am.

The Smoke Thieves: Review

smoke

 

400 pages
Published May 1st 2018 by Viking
First off, this book was not 400 pages. It was 531 some odd pages so don’t believe the lies.
Second off, this book has five POV’s. Count them with me. FIVE. Though multiple POV hasn’t turned me off in the past, this one almost did. Even though I bought the book and was holding in my trembling hands, asking myself WTF I got myself into.
530 pages
Okay, so when a book is compared to Game of Thrones, I used to find myself squealing like a little piggy. Each and every time though, the book has disappointed me. Maybe because it was marketed incorrectly or maybe nothing can be compared to GoT. Fight me.
I am going to go with what I didn’t like first:
Too many POV’s. It didn’t have to be that way.
A tedious plot where nothing happens for quite some time and when it does, it’s jarring.
Too many POV’s.
The demons and the smoke could have had a bigger bearing on the story than they did.
The ending was too abrupt and so clearly set up for a sequel.
What I liked:
Great writing
Awesome cover
That I probably could have stopped at page 300 and got the gist of it
Somehow I felt myself hooked and even though I finished this two days ago, I can’t figure out why. I mean, the characters were well fleshed out save for Ambrose or whatever, he was boring AF and the love between him and the princess Catherine didn’t seem too believable. But that was all right because it didn’t really need it. Especially for her character arc. March wasn’t any better. I think the only character I truly loved for the gay rep and the Arya Stark wannabe, Tash, who is a demon hunter and you can’t really go wrong there.
I don’t know. I mean, I might read the second one only because I am anxious to see what happens. Please don’t let it be as long as this one. I swear I lost muscle tone and gained some cataracts while reading this book.

Grace and Fury: review

gracefury

 

320 pages
Expected publication: July 31st 2018 by Little, Brown Books for Young Readers
Thank you to NetGalley for the e-arc of this title.
This story was so addicting. Not only was the world inspired by Italy (where I currently live) but the characters themselves reeled me in. I was so thankful that there wasn’t magic in this fantasy, as with most YA’s nowadays. Even though this is a fantasy there are some underlying tones to situations in the world right now. The feminism is strong with this one.
Two sisters, Nomi and Serina grow up in a world where women are suppressed. Serina vies for a chance to become a “Grace” which is basically a courtesan to the king and future kings. As fate and misunderstanding have it that Nomi, the defiant of the two, is chosen and Serina is spirited away to an island prison. Nomi, who has learned how to read, which is against the law, and Serina, who has trained all her life to become a servant to the future king, find themselves at odds with the worlds around them and take on roles neither had ever dreamed of choosing.
It was so funt o see each character grow and fight against the world around them. Serina, having always been the docile one is forced to overcome her fears and finally understand where Nomi was coming from when she questioned the roles of women in their country. Circumstance also changes Nomi when she is forced to play the role of Grace, a role she abhors with all her heart. Both of fighting different battles. They realize the choices they make not only affect themselves but the future of women everywhere.
I recommend this book. Highly. It has fist pumping feminism and high stakes and also some love, but not quite the way you think. If you’re looking for a YA fantasy that will hook and captivate you, this is the one. Also, if you’re sick of magic, give this one a try. It was a breath of fresh air for me.