Tag Archive | non-spoiler book review

Non-Spoiler Book Review | “Legendary,” by Stephanie Garber

⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

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I just finished reading Legendary by Stephanie Garber and OMG it was such a huge improvement from the first one. If you read my review on Caraval which I wrote about more than a year ago, you know I did not like that book at all. I felt like it lacked character and purpose and the actual main character Scarlett truly pissed me off.

In this book, we follow the story of Scarlett’s sister, Tella. Donatella decides its time for her to play the game of Caraval herself this time instead of participating because in doing so she would finally be reunited with her mom who left them a long time ago. Don’t get me wrong, there’s still the conniving lies, mysterious people, and treatures adventures full of pain, loss, and sacrifice, but somehow in this book there seem to be more of a purpose. In this story, the players of the Caraval tell Tella that this time Caraval is much more than a game–the game is real this time and maybe that’s why I liked it even better.

We immediately see the differences between the two sisters in this story. Where Scarlett’s decisions were all made out of fear, Tella’s were made out of finding out what came next, her fear pushed her to be more. There wasn’t one time throughout this whole book where I felt annoyed by Tella’s decisions if anything I found myself agreeing to many of the decisions she made and found myself nodding along with her statements while playing the game. Tella is a super strong character, stronger than Scarlett for sure, but after reading this book, I do have to give Scarlett some credit because she did play out of love for her sister when it was her turn in the past book.

We are introduced to more characters in this book, there are some that we already know and that we get to know more intimately, and we are introduced to the Fates in this story who are some sort of immortal beings that ruled the earth centuries ago, who are also apparently evil creatures. Oh, and you won’t believe who’s Tella’s love interest on this one, it made me laugh with her at the end so hard LOL!

The reason I wanted to read this book was that of the letter on the last page of Caraval, the one that Tella’s friend wrote to her, and Garber didn’t disappoint. I have to hand it to her, that women can write! Her world building was beautiful–the way she describes the places and buildings throughout the book made me want to read every single detail of it (because sometimes I do skip details LOL), her descriptions were life if you were able to read music without actually listening to the sounds. The story felt so alive, she made you feel as if you were in the story with the character. Hell, I found myself playing along–participating in Caraval–with Donatella trying to figure who is Legend (which we do find out who he is in this book but I won’t tell you muahaha imagine evil laugh here) trying to find a way of not dooming the whole to the hands of the fates, trying to save herself and also trying to find her mother.

There are many things going on in this book but never once did I get lost nor did I feel like I should put the book down because it got too overwhelming–if anything every chapter of the book made me want to finish it faster, hence why I finished the book at 3 a.m. (not ashamed). Congratulations Stephanie on this beautiful masterpiece, you managed to make me truly enjoy this book and I cannot wait to read the next one, especially with that little teasing note that you left at the end of this one! How dare you?! LOL

I would recommend for ages 13 and up! Read if you liked Caraval, Ace of Shades, Six of Crows, and Crooked Kingdom! You’ll truly enjoy this one!

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Non-Spoiler Book Review | “Ash Princess,” by Laura Sebastian

2/5 Stars

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Hey, well guess what? Finally got around reading Ash Princess and unfortunately, this book didn’t do it for me. It felt like one of those books that I’ve read before somewhere else. I finished it and I was like, “Meh, I’ve read it before,” which sucked because I really wanted to like this book. TThe cover alone dragged me to it like a moth drawn to a flame, it’s so pretty and if you ever get to hold it in your hands you can feel the 3D feel of the cover.

Here we follow the story of Princess Theodosia, a princess whose mother was killed right before her eyes by the evil King and that now has to work to gain her kingdom back. She’s been in captivity for over 10 years given the title of Ash princess by the man who stole her kingdom. The story itself seems repetitive, there’s a damsel in distress, she has powers, she’s hopeless, defenseless, and abused. There’s promise to this story though, I feel like the author has great potential and her writing is incredible. I just wished she’d written a better story. However, Theo was incredibly strong, the things that she went through because of her people–for her people–are things that I haven’t read in any other books.

The king is as cruel as any king can be–but I’ve yet to read a fantasy book following this kind of line that had a king that was nice.  He was ruthless and mean and he took anything he wanted. He makes Theo wear an ash crown for each time there’s a reason to celebrate something, shaming her in front of her people, hence the title and the crown on the cover. Then there was Soren, the heir to the throne, which I believe has good intentions for the kingdom and for Thora but we’ll see how it develops. And then there’s Blaise, a friend from Theo’s past and he’s sure a keeper–or is he?

I do think that honestly, that true enigma in this book is her friend Crescentia, whom I think the next book is going to be about, and if my suspicions are confirmed, then I wouldn’t mind reading the next book.

I didn’t care much about the “world-building” but since her whole life was inside the palace, there wasn’t much to build. There were some words thrown here and there from her Astrean language that were hard to interpret and also, what kind of name is Kalovaxian for a group of people? But anyways, it just felt like another princess whose kingdom has been taken away and now she must battle to get it back.

I would recommend this book if you liked Red Queen, Blood Rose Rebellion, and any other princess need to save her kingdom book out there! For ages 13 and up!

I’m also trying to be more active in my book social media, so if you guys could give me a follow that would be awesome! @deniareads is my username

Non-Spoiler Book Review | “Love & Luck,” by Jenna Evans Welch

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So, first off,  let me start by saying I’m finally out of school! At least for the summer. It’s going to be a crazy one and I’m so excited. This is the first summer in forever where I’m not taking classes–which means that I going to read all summer, I’m going to catch up on TBR pile and I’m going to bring it down! I’m also trying to be more active in my social media, so make sure you follow me on that @deniareads

3.5/5 Stars

Now, enough about me ranting, let’s get to the review, ’cause we all know that’s what you are here for. Do you like sour candies? The really sour sour kind? Like at first when you put it in your mouth, the candy is so sour you can barely handle it, but after a few minutes the really sweet flavor of the candy starts coming through, but it takes you a long while to get to that sweet part of the candy. Well, that’s how I feel about this book.

This book follows the point of view of Addie and her journey through Ireland. She’s going through a recent heartbreak and that’s literally what the book is about. Her brother Ian keeps pestering her to tell her mom about something that happened before school ended. In the story Addie tries to fix her relationship with brother because of that situation. This was my sour moment. I think that the author dragged their issue way too long throughout this book when she totally could’ve fixed it in, like, the first three chapters, but instead we get a whole 200 pages of them fighting and honestly it was so hard to get through it. I really wanted to like this book because I loved her other book, Love and Gelato, it was amazing, and Jenna is amazing. She’s like the sweetest person ever. But, Oh God, this book.

However, there were some sweet moments, I like the part of the heartbreak and how this book guides Addie through it and helps her deal with her pain. The book gets better in the last 50 pages. I also loved how Jenna describes places, I feel like she’s my own tour guide that took me through Ireland for a couple of days, but the trip was kinda moppy because of Addie and her heartbreak and her fights with her brother. I would like to travel with Jenna though, I feel like she would be the perfect tour guide as I mentioned above.

I would recommend for all of you who liked her first book, which is also correlated to this one, because this is Lina’s best friend that we meet briefly in Love and Gelato. But, anyways, read this book if you like traveling, have a broken heart and love Ireland. 14 years old and up.

Non-Spoiler Book Review | “High Voltage,” by Karen M. Moning

5/5 Stars

Again, another masterpiece by the all-time great and wonderful Karen Marie Moning.

Champions don’t spring from happy childhoods

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Where to start? Every time I read one of her books I feel like I’m reading the Bible (not really, but you know what I mean?) What I mean is that she’s so wise. Every two pages I would find something that I could relate to. I promise you: there are more tabs and bookmarks in this book than actual words, LOL. I could just post a whole post about the quotes that I found interesting in this book and it would be very long.

I think that that’s one of the things I love the most about her writing, she’s sophisticated yet simple. She thrives on greatness and the perfect expression of the characters emotions. I also learned about 500 new words in this book–every chapter had a new big word that I didn’t know and at some point, I looked forward to finding them. I feel like an intellectual when I read her books and I love it. Not once in the story did I felt lost. Her point always comes across. The world-building was on point. The characters were well represented and each had a clear idea of what their purpose should be.

I do think that sometimes she includes things that are incredibly unnecessary and redundant. Like, she’s just trying to fill in space. This book is also shorter than it looks. It has roughly about 415 pages. That’s not counting the deleted scenes and the glossary at the end. That’s another thing that I appreciate about this author, if this is the first Fever book you’ve ever picked up, she provides you with an extensively detailed glossary of each character and place at the end of the book. It comes in very handy (trust me) and you wouldn’t have to read 9 other books to catch up–though I highly recommend that you do so.

In this one, the Fever Series #10, we follow the story of Dani O’Malley and the years after the song of making was sung. There are still terrors hunting the streets of Dublin, the song of making did repair their world from being absorbed by the black holes but it also brought many powerful and dangerous creatures that want to end the human race. We also discover that Dani has some sort of superpower–more than the ones she already has and we discover finally what she’s meant to be. She still shows levels of immaturity in the early chapters of the book, you know, she’s still growing. She misses Dancer very much and even though it’s been two years she still loves him.

Things start to get better in the picture when Ryodan comes back (he left to have her figure out her life). He grounds her. Makes her feel things about herself that she wouldn’t have seen otherwise. I love how raw and unapologetic he is. We don’t realize how much he loves her until this book–well, at least it is very clear to see how much he loves her. How long he’s been waiting for her and how patient he is. They fight most of the time because they are the same person and in a chapter of this book Dani explains it better than I ever will. There are quite literally two pages of her talking on how similar they are and that’s why they crash so much, but also, that’s why they love each other.

Love doesn’t build cages. It builds stairways to the stars.

Ryodan is so smart–I love this man. I think that his love for Dani is unconditional and he’s even more emotional and perceptive than Barron’s. It took us at least 9 books to clearly figure out how Barron’s felt about Mac. It only took us 3 to figure out how Ryodan felt about Dani. Together they discover a new evil that’s been hunting the streets of Dublin and together they stop it.

Dani–even though she shows immaturity at the beginning of the book–she also shows growth and passion. She’s very passionate about everyone she loves and everything she does. Ryodan is there every step of the way, helping her grow, watching her become the woman–the creature that she was supposed to be.  Something that’s worth mentioning is that we don’t see Mac at all in this book, which leads me to believe that we’ll have at least a couple more books to read in Dani’s perspective because there are still unresolved issues that need addressing.

I cannot wait to join Dani and Ryodan and Mac and Barrons in their new adventures. If you like paranormal romance, anything fae induced and two of the most obtuse people you’ve ever met, then this book is the best thing for you.

I would recommend for 18 year-olds and older.

Non-Spoiler Book Review | “Turtles All the Way Down,” by John Green

3.5/5 Stars 

I read this book a couple of months ago when it first came out, I just never got to write down a review for it. I’m just so lazy you guys. LOL. (Don’t judge).

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I was actually expecting so much more from John Green, he’s such an amazing author, but this book was not all that. I like the subject that the author wrote it on, I feel like mental health–especially the kind that our main character had–is not talked a lot about in YA books.

This book follows the story of Aza, whom with her best friend Daisy try to solve a murder mystery. Aza has a mental problem (and I don’t know if I’m explaining it right, so don’t roast me, LOL) that she lets her thoughts consume her. It doesn’t sound bad, but in her case it is. I’ve never read anything like it but, again, it’s not John Green Material. When you read John Green you expect to cry for two weeks after you read the book, to always have a box tissue next to you and your soul to be destroyed for the rest of your life.

When I read this book, I was like “meh.” And don’t get me wrong–it was an interesting story and it has a lot of potential and I’m pretty sure a lot of you would love it, but again, I was expecting more from JG. Aza was a very interesting character, to get inside her head and experience her illness was mindblowing and I recommend everyone to read just because it is a good thing to be aware of this situation.

I feel like most of us can relate to Daisy, Aza’s best friend. There’s a scene in this book (I don’t think this is a spoiler) where Daisy hardcore judges Aza and the way Aza reacts and teaches her about her illness at the end of the book really made an impact on me. I can see myself easily falling into the zone that Daisy was in when she said what she said, and I appreciate the effort the Green put into explaining how that illness feels like.

Finally, if you’re interested in mental health issues, a dab of romance and an interesting friendship, oh! and murder mystery, give this book a try. I would recommend for readers 12 years and older.

I’m Out! xoxo.

Non-Spoiler Book Review | “Hunting Prince Dracula,” by Kerri Maniscalco

Again, an amazing, intriguing and intense story by the wonderful Maniscalco.

4.5/5 Stars

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In this story, we follow Audrey Rose and her friend Thomas to Romania, where they are to compete for a spot in a prestigious forensic studies school. The twist in this story is that they are going where the infamous Dracula lived—the school is situated in his castle.

A quick history lesson for you guys, Prince Vlad Dracula reigned in the Country of Romania around the 1600s and when he died people believed he turned into a vampire. This book was written in a late 1800s perspective and I find it fascinating the way the author makes these connections and chooses these myths and folklore to create an amazing story. Maniscalco manages to fuse both, history and fiction in a way that will have you at the edge of your chair with goosebumps all over your body.

We meet a variety of different characters and I must say that I despised the headmaster of the school, but there were some interesting developments throughout the story. I also loved how she incorporated a romance that, in that period of time, would have been seen as wrong and unforgiving—but that didn’t stop the author from bringing that aspect in, which I found very brave. You’ll see what I’m talking about once you read the book.

In other words, if you like solving mysteries, page-turning thrillers, murder investigation, and you are curious about Dracula, then this is the perfect book for you. With the right amount of romance, action, and suspense, Maniscalco will have you craving for me after each page. I cannot wait for the next to come out, “Escaping Houdini,” I’m so excited.

I recommend it to 14+ years-old.

Non-Spoiler Book Review | “Shuffle, Repeat,” by Jen Klein

4/5 stars

This was a beautiful book with an amazing story. I think it has DUFF and Easy A vibes. I enjoyed reading this book a lot, more than I expected, and this is my first book by this author and I’m very satisfied with it.

26067503This book follows the story of June and Oliver. June’s mom and Oliver’s mom arrange for both of them to ride together to school. June doesn’t like this arrangement, but there’s nothing she can do about it. June and Oliver know each other, or knew each other–but then they grew up, and high school happened. June believes that High School traditions are stupid and can’t wait to go to college to leave all of that stupidity behind. Oliver, on the other hand, believes that high school is all there is and that you need to make your high school years the best because you will remember them forever.

Since they have different opinions about high school, they argue most of the time, and to pass the time they listen to music on their way over to the school, hence the title. This story is full of fun, humor, lies, friendship, and future. I would recommend this story to anyone who’s having conflicting feelings about high school or college, and how two strangers can overcome anything, and find the truth in their hearts. 14 and up could read this. Enjoy!