The Demon Race (Spoiler Free Review)

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The Demon Race

Author: Alexandria Warwick (Her website HERE)

Publisher: Wolf Publishing

Release Date: September 18, 2018

My Rating: 4.5 Stars

Goodreads

You can pre-order at Amazon (This is my affiliate link)

I am having really good luck with lesser known authors this year. This book was not on my radar the beginning of this year, but let me tell you, it should be on yours. This is a story of a girl who doesn’t want to get married so she goes and enters in the Demon Race. But the Demon horses (Heck yes. Awesome.), feed off of the participants emotions and soul.

This book had such a good moral compass. I thought that what the characters go through was actually very relatable in any society. I tabbed the crap out of this book because of that. So, when the demons feed on your emotions, they aren’t actually MAKING you do anything. They just heighten the bad emotions in you. But it is still your CHOICE to do the evil things. Even though to choose good is the hardest choice. Tricky, Warwick, tricky. I like it. I truly believe that this is a real occurrence that happens. People have bad thoughts all the time, it is how you respond to them that matters. People also like to blame, blame, blame. Blame their circumstances, blame the people around them. Yes, just like the demons in the story, those have a lot of play in your emotions. However, it is ultimately up to you to decide what to do with those emotions. You CAN choose good even when everything is against you. This was actually the core message I got out of this story.  I just couldn’t believe an author was actually writing about this! It was awesome!

Okay, I know by now your like, enough with the sappy stuff. So let me get into the characters. Namali, our heroine, was an extraordinary character. She fought what she knew was wrong, but she also forgave. How many heroines now-a-days forgive? It’s all about “I deserve vengeance.” She forgave her father and the men around her that were forcing her to do things. Wow. That’s actually quite beautiful. Now, don’t get me wrong, she fought like a hell-cat, as she should have. But I loved the forgiveness that followed. No one forgives anyone in this day and age. Her character progression was some of the best I’ve ever seen.

Here comes another slightly sappy sentiment… In this book, people suffer. Namali suffers because she is a woman and women in her culture are seen as property. Sameen suffers because he was born with a twisted foot. Now, there were times when Namali was all about her suffering. But she learns that other people suffer too. Wow. Imagine that. She’s not the only one who struggles. It would be nice to see a world where everyone had compassion on other people’s suffering instead of being selfish and just saying, “Well surely I suffer more, so I deserve more!” Warwick, you are an amazing story teller.

One of my favorite lines:

You don’t understand. She assumed that of him more often than she was comfortable admitting. And it was unfair. It was unfair because in doing so, she invalidated his opinion simply because they, as people, were different.

Final Thoughts. I loved this book. I thought it had MANY lessons in here that should be learned by girls and boys from around the world. I thought Warwick was brave in putting some of these things in here. I loved her writing style. It was also a clean book. I liked that. The ONLY reason this did not get 5 stars is because I’m not sure yet if I will re-read this. Y’all know my 5 stars are books I will definitely be re-reading.  Dare I say this slightly reminds me of The Horse and His Boy by C.S. Lewis? 

Happy Adventuring

 

August 2018 TBR

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I can’t believe it is August already. I blinked and I missed July! Anyways, as per usual I am determined to read four books this month! I rarely do but it’s always my goal! And I’ve got more ARCs to review this month that I’m super excited about! I hope you are too! 

*Let me say that I finished a book in between writing my Wrap-Up post and my TBR post. The Demon Race by Alexandria Warwick. I will be reviewing that bad boy tomorrow (Fri, Aug. 3)!

First up…. The 48 by Donna Hosie. 33006920

 

I am super excited about this one! I got this ARC from Storygram Tours! (Check them out HERE )And while a review is not required, I would still like to provide one! So, thank you Storygram! This one is about time traveling assassins! It already pretty much only has 5 star reviews. Check it out on Goodreads HERE

 

 

Second…. Ignite the Stars by Maura Milan38469737

I am really loving mixing genres at the moment. Once I’m done with historical fiction, I will jump into Sci-fi! My friend, Mel gave this book a great review and she had an interview with the author on her blog! Milan seems like she’d be awesome to hang out with!

Mel’s blog HERE

Check it out on Goodreads HERE

 

 

Third… Impostors by Scott Westerfeld     37825397

 

I read the Uglies series years ago. So I am super happy to have traded an ARC for this ARC! I really enjoyed that series and am excited to see where Westerfeld will take it again!

Check it out on Goodreads HERE

 

 

 

Fourth… The Storm Runner by J. C. Cervantes34966353

 

 

I haven’t read a middle grade book in some time and am excited to get into one! This one is a take on Maya mythology! It sounds so interesting!

Check it out on Goodreads HERE

 

 

This month is pretty slow, life wise, for me so I am hoping I can get through all of these! What are you reading this month?

Happy Adventuring

The Forest Queen Review (Spoiler Free)

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Author: Betsy Cornwell

Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt

Publication Date: August 7, 2018

My Rating: 4 Stars

Goodreads

Amazon (Contains my affiliate link)

*I received an ARC from the publisher in exchange for an honest review*

The Forest Queen gives me all the nostalgic feels of my childhood favorite fairy tales. It is a Robin Hood retelling with a girl named Sylvie, who steals from the rich and gives to the poor. I loved the adventure to be had here!

The Story. For being a shorter book than what I usually read, the story was actually pretty well rounded. There were a few questions I had, and when I re-read through some paragraphs to see if I missed something, I didn’t find what I was looking for. But they weren’t any major plot holes, more like how did this character get from A to B.

The Writing. I liked Cornwell’s writing but it wasn’t my favorite. She is a good storyteller, but I feel as though the story could have gone to higher places if she had added more descriptions. Sometimes I was confused when Sylvie dreamed but then it turned out to be real life. Or if she was imagining something or not. I had to re-read paragraphs a few times.

The Characters: I really enjoyed the characters in this book. I thought that Sylvie’s character progression was actually quite good! The romance was cute but not an essential part of the story. The side characters were really likable and had personality. Especially Little Jane! And Bird is just the cutest! I also have to say that I felt as though Cornwell threw in LGBT characters at the last moment to try and give it some diversity. It just seemed random, like she was like, “Whoops, forgot to add diversity. Let’s just quickly add in some new side characters at the end here.”

Final Thoughts. I almost gave this book 3 stars but the nostalgic feel of it along with the ending bumped it up to 4 stars. I had a good time reading this retelling, and would love to read more of her work! Also, that cover is completely drool worthy.

July TBR

TBR

Hey bookish lovers! Once again I am hoping to read 4 books this month! And three of them are ARCs coming out in the next couple of months! So keep an eye out for those non-spoiler-y reviews!

*Amazon links are my affiliate links*

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As you can see from my last post, I picked up Mistborn at the end of June. I am hoping to finish this first week of July! It’s so good y’all! I personally think it lives up to the hype! This is my first Sanderson book (Unless you count him finishing The Wheel of Time series) and like any person with no self control, I have already looked up fan-art and started reading about the Cosmere… Whoops. I just jumped in there.

Goodreads

Amazon

 

 

 

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First of all, can we all gawk and drool over this cover? Okay, now that we’ve got that out of the way…. The Forest Queen! I cannot wait to sink my bookish teeth into this one! It is a retelling of Robin Hood with a female! Heck to the yes! Betsy Cornwell is also the same author as Mechanica!

Releases from Houghton Mifflin Harcourt on August 7, 2018.

Goodreads

Amazon

 

 

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And let us also take a moment to ogle this cover as well. Grim Lovelies is probably one of my most anticiapated reads this year. With a lot of really cool Fantasy elements, I am hoping this will wow me! An animal enchanted into a human, Anouk dreams of living free in Paris! Seriously, this sounds so freaking awesome.

Releases from HMH Books for Young Readers on October 2, 2018.

Goodreads

Amazon

 

 

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I am really hoping to get to this debut author, Alexandria Warwick, first novel, The Demon Race. It sounds like an amazing horse back riding adventure that anyone would want to go on… if your horse is actually a shadow demon seeping darkness into your soul. I honestly don’t think I have ever read something like this and I cannot wait to see what it has in store!

Releases from Wolf Publishing on September 18, 2018.

Goodreads

Amazon

 

 

This month looks like a very promising reading month! What are you reading this month?

Happy Adventuring!

Blood and Sand (Spoiler Free Review)

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“‘Spartacus was a Thracian from the nomadic tribes and not only had a great spirit and great physical strength, but was much more than one would expect…’ Plutarch of Chaeronea, AD 100” 

Title: Blood and Sand

Author: C.V. Wyk

Publisher: Tor Teen

My Rating: 4 Stars

*Synopsis taken from Goodreads*

“Roma Victrix. The Republic of Rome is on a relentless march to create an empire―an empire built on the backs of the conquered, brought back to Rome as slaves.

Attia was once destined to rule as the queen and swordmaiden of Thrace, the greatest warrior kingdom the world had seen since Sparta. Now she is a slave, given to Xanthus, the Champion of Rome, as a sign of his master’s favor. Enslaved as a child, Xanthus is the preeminent gladiator of his generation.

Against all odds, Attia and Xanthus form a tentative bond. A bond that will spark a rebellion. A rebellion that threatens to bring the Roman Republic to its end―and gives rise to the legend of Spartacus…”

*I got a copy from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review! Thank you!*

Sweet mother of Caesar what a grand adventure this book was! It had action, adventure, romance, and a butt kicking heroine who takes a licking and keeps on kicking! (I seriously want to learn her crazy moves.) I loved Attia. I thought she was the perfect amount of feisty while still maintaining a gentleness. Just look at her relationship with Rory, who is a six year old child. Six year olds are crazy and wild and a lot to handle! Attia managed her caretaker duties flawlessly in one scene and then maim some dude in the next! She was everything I imagine a warrior princess should be! She is by far my favorite character I’ve read about in a long time!

And can we talk about Xanthus?! He is basically the worlds best gladiator! He was the perfect calm to her storm. Don’t get me wrong, he also knows a million ways to kill a guy, but he does it all with a stoic demeanor. I adore his tortured soul.

Now, the reason I gave this book 4 stars was because I felt as though the romance moved too quickly and didn’t make a smooth transition. At one point, they didn’t trust each other at all, then a day later they were best friends. It was just a little too choppy. And y’all remember that I only give a book 5 stars if I am going to re-read it. I don’t feel as though this was that type of book for me.

Overall:  I found this book to be HIGHLY entertaining with a unique plot! I would recommend this to anyone who loves Roman culture, adventure type, YA, historical fiction. Also, the ending is brutal and I need Fire and Ash RIGHT NOW!

My Top 10 2018 Book Releases

There are so many great books coming out in 2018! I am dying to get my hands on quite a few! One of my reading goals this year is to read one new release book each month. So, without further ado… The books!

(Each photo will take you to the book on Goodreads)

A Traitor's Game        Brightly Burning

A Reaper at the Gates       The Hazel Wood

A Court of Frost and Starlight       Sky in the Deep

Rage       Obsidio

Legendary       Furyborn

Honorable Mentions:

This Splintered Silence by Kayla Olson (It doesn’t have a cover yet, which is why it isn’t shown. But trust me, this book is in my top 10. She’s an auto-buy author for me!)

Throne of Glass #7 by Sarah J. Maas (No cover and no title yet! The anticipation is killing me!)

A Treacherous Curse by Deanna Raybourn (I had an ARC of this and was reading it until it expired on my phone. 😦 So I am very excited to have this one!)

I have 59, 2018 releases listed on my Goodreads under the shelf ‘2018’ if you want to check it out! What are some of your most anticipated releases??