Reign the Earth by A.C. Gaughen.

Title – Reign the Earth
Series – The Elementae #1
Author – A.C. Gaughen
How I Got It – From the publisher
Pages – 438 pages
Publication Date – January 2018 by Bloomsbury Children’s Books
ISBN – 9781681199368
My Rating – β˜…β˜…β˜…β˜…/5

“She is a daughter of the desert, and she has magic in her blood.”

Shalia’s people are desperate for the war to end and their people to stop dying. So she’s willing to sacrifice her freedom to save them. Shalia agrees to an arranged marriage with the king id the adjoining kingdom, even though it’ll mean behind everything she’s ever known. In her strange new country magic is forbidden and the people who have the power to control the elements, the Elementae, are traitors.

Before the coronation, Shalia discovers she has the power to control Earth. Trapped between her husband’s hatred of the Elementae and a rebellion, Shalia has a difficult decision to make – save both her people and the Elementae or save herself.

I received a copy of Reign the Earth from Bloomsbury Australia to review. This is the first book in the Elementae series.Β DWHZTh0U8AUrTKK

Okay so I’m just going to get this out of the way first – there is emotional and physical abuse in this book. And not just between Shalia and her husband. I felt like her husband (what was his name again?) manipulated his sister too. Or that could just have been the way she was raised. I can’t really remember a lot. But I do remember her letting him get away with a lot when he needed his head pulled in. It was hard to read at times, the scenes with Shalia and her husband, because I wanted Shalia to stand up for herself and tell him where to go. But at the same time I knew what was at risk for her. Her husband was such an ass. He just came across to me as a spoiled, weak and scared child who’d been indulged and obeyed because of the title he held not because people respected him. He doesn’t come across to me as someone who’ll eventually see the error of his ways and maybe change or grow up. He likes being in control and having the people around him fear him. This dude just needs to die. I’m so done with him.

I especially hated what he did to innocent people, even children! And don’t get me started on the things he did to the Elementae and his messed up reasons why. Not only because of the spoilers but he just makes me so angry.

Moving on from him. I really liked the magic in Reign the Earth and the story of where it came from. Not the death part! But the parts about where it went and how it was freed. I loved Shalia’s family, especially her best friend/sister and her brother. And I loved Shalia too. She was a lot stronger and smarter than a certain character gave her credit for. I’m looking forward to finding out what she does next.

And the ending was so good! I mean there was one part I didn’t like. But the action just built up and oh my god that cliffhanger! I need the sequel like right now!

I definitely recommend this to anyone who likes strong female characters and some pretty awesome magic!

*Thank you Bloomsbury Australia for sending me a copy to review*

–Β  Aimee.


Review: Moonrise by Sarah Crossan.

Title – Moonrise
Author – Sarah Crossan
How I Got It – From the publisher
Pages – 400 pages
Publication Date – September 7th 2017 by Bloomsbury Childrens
ISBN – 9781408867808
My Rating – β˜…β˜…β˜…β˜…β˜…/5

“They think I hurt someone.
But I didn’t. You hear?
Cos people are gonna be telling you
All kinds of lies.
I need you to know the truth.”

Joe hasn’t seen his older brother, Ed, in ten years and its for the worst reason. Ed is sitting on death row and his execution date has been set. This might be the last summer Joe has with his brother.

I received a copy of Moonrise from Bloomsbury Australia to review. This is the second book I’ve read by Crossan. I read One a few years ago and loved it. When I received Moonrise in the mail to review I was excited to read it.Β DIWdvtbUQAAlVIo

I’m just going to get this out of the way now. Not a lot of books have made me cry but I’ll admit that I was actually crying at the end of this book. Actual tears! Which for me means it was a really good book and one of the reasons I gave it five stars. I just got so attached to Joe and Ed and I wanted them to have a happy ending.

In Moonrise, Ed is on death row for a crime he says he didn’t commit. I’m going to admit that I was a little skeptical at first. I know it’s supposed to be innocent until proven guilty but Ed was in prison. No one wants to think the justice system screws up and that innocent people are, right now, sitting in prison for something they didn’t do. And especially not on death row. But the justice system isn’t perfect and mistakes are made. Innocent people have been executed and are imprisoned. This isn’t related to the book but, for example, Steven Avery and Brendan Dassey. I believe they’re both innocent. If you haven’t seen Making a Murderer then I highly recommend it. Although it made me very angry. This book shows what happens when the justice system fails.

But it also shows what one family is willing to do for someone they love. Even if they’re aren’t sure what to believe. Ed’s family wants to be there for him at the end, when he needs them the most. Especially if it might be the last time they see each other.

Moonrise is told in verse. I’ve only read one other book told this way and it was also by Crossan and I loved that too. Even though it was sad. I wasn’t sure if I’d be able to connect with the story or characters with the book being written this way but both Moonrise and One was amazing and so, so sad.

I think I might have to pick up more of Crossan’s books. This isn’t the kind of book I usually read but I could not put it down.

*Thank you Bloomsbury Australia for sending me a copy to review*

– Aimee.

Review: Children of Blood and Bone by Tomi Adeyemi.

Title – Children of Blood and Bone
Series – Legacy of Orisha #1
Author – Tomi Adeyemi
How I Got It – From the publisher
Pages – 531 pages
Publication Date – March 13th 2018 by Macmillan Children’s Books
ISBN – 9781509871353
My Rating – β˜…β˜…β˜…β˜…β˜…/5

Zelie can remember when Orisha was alive with magic. So many different kinds of magic. Zelie’s mother was a Reaper who could summon spirits. But everything changed when magic disappeared. The king of Orisha ordered all maji over a certain age to be killed. Zelie was left without her mother and their people without hope.

Now, Zelie has one chance to bring magic back and get revenge. With the help of Amari, a rogue princess, Zelie needs to outrun and outwit the crown prince, who is determined to get rid of magic for good.

I received a copy of Children of Blood and Bone from Macmillan Publishers New Zealand to review.Β DXooSdXUQAA5aca

I’m going to just get this out of the way now, I freaking loved this book! It did take be a while to get through because its bigger than I was expecting and the text in the copy I got is kind of small. But it was totally worth it. I loved the characters, well most of them, and the magic!

I don’t understand why the maji’s powers needed to be taken away, why the king was so scared of magic and why he taught others to hate them. Even when his reasons were revealed I wasn’t sure I believed him. He’s such a disgusting and hateful person that I’m sure he could have made it all up. I do get how, if it is true, why he’d hate the people who did it. But that doesn’t mean he had to kill all the maji or excuse what he did. Or even give him a reason to do it.

Then there’s his son, Inan. I think he was the most frustrating character in the whole book for me. I mean, at least his father was honest about what he wanted. But Inan was all over the place. And the fact that he thought Zelie had cursed him but was willing to use that curse if it meant getting what he wanted? No. I just couldn’t with him. I mean, I can see what his father did to him growing up and his fear too.

I loved Zelie, Amari and Tzain! They were one of the best parts of Children of Blood and Bone for me. Them and the magic! The world in this book sounded mostly awful, especially for the diviners. There was even a slur for them. But there were some good things too – most of the people were good. People like Zelie, Amari and Tzain who were fighting to give their people hope again. And a fighting chance too. I hated the racism, racial slurs and prejudice. But I was drawn into Zelie and Amari’s race to save magic.

And the ending! Wow, I did not see that coming! I can’t wait to see what’s next for Zelie, Amari, Tzain and the people of Orisha.

I can’t recommend Children of Blood and Bone enough. It’s one of the best books I’ve read this year! And I definitely recommend reading the author’s note at the end of the book. I don’t normally read them so I’m not sure what made me read Tomi’s but it gave more insight into the story of Orisha.

*Thank you Macmillan Publishers New Zealand for sending me a copy to review*

– Aimee.

Review: Obsidio by Amie Kaufman & Jay Kristoff.

Title – Obsidio
Series – The Illuminae Files #3
Authors – Amie Kaufman & Jay Kristoff
How I Got It – From the publisher
Pages – 615 pages
Publication Date – March 14th 2018 by Allen & Unwin
ISBN – 9781925266726
My Rating – β˜…β˜…β˜…β˜…β˜…/5

“Asha Grant came to Karenza to escape her past. Too bad he just caught up with her.”

Asha is one of the survivors from BeiTech’s attack on Karenza and now she’s part of the resistance. The last thing Asha thought she’d have to worry about was her ex-boyfriend. But Rhys Lindstrom just landed on Karenza, and he’s looking better than ever. Even though he’s in a BeiTech uniform…

Asha isn’t the only one who’s got problems. Her cousin, Kady and the other survivors are heading towards Karenza – and they don’t have enough oxygen to get there alive. BeiTech are hurrying to fix their damaged jump gate, which will mean killing anyone alive on Karenza before they leave.

I received a copy of Obsidio from Allen and Unwin New Zealand to review. This is the final book in The Illuminae Files. You can click the links for my reviews of Illuminae and Gemina.Β DWbW7vcU0AUzyya

I loved the first two books in this trilogy. The story has been edge of your seat insane and I love how the story is told through surveillance videos, IM’s and illustrations. Obsidio was one of my most anticipated books this year and it deserved all the stars!

I was definitely expecting death in this one. I mean, why wouldn’t I after what AIDAN did in Illuminae and Gemina? And I didn’t want to get my hopes up that everyone that I liked would survive because I felt like I’d just be setting myself up for heartbreak. But that’s all I’m going to say about that.

I love Kady, Ezra, Hanna, Nik and Ella. It didn’t take me long to add Asha to that list but I wasn’t sure what to think of Rhys. Not just because he was in a BeiTech uniform but I was hoping he’d end up on the right side.

There were so many time while reading Obsidio that I thought people were dead. I can only remember one part where I knew some of the characters weren’t dead even though people thought they were. I’m not going to say who because I don’t want to spoil anything.

I loved the ending of Obsidio! The part where Kady, Ezra and Nik were talking about Leanne made me laugh out loud. And that final tribunal scene was hilarious! But I did enjoy the tribunal scenes in Illuminae and Gemina too.

Oh my god – the identity of the person doing the surveillance footage was revealed in this. How did I not see that coming? It’s so freaking obvious now! They were one of my favourite parts of all three books.

And then there’sΒ AIDAN… What can I say aboutΒ AIDAN? Well he didn’t disappoint. Even though he killed all those people I still missedΒ AIDAN. Is that weird?

If you haven’t read The Illuminae Files you’re totally missing out! There’s zombies, disgusting giant worm things that always make me cringe when I read about them and a psychotic AI who kills people. Seriously, what’s not to love? This trilogy has made me actually laugh out loud in every books. I love the story, the characters, the sarcasm and Marie Lu’s illustrations. I gave every book five stars. I can’t wait to see what Kaufman and Kristoff come up with next!

*Thank you Allen and Unwin New Zealand for sending me a copy to review*

– Aimee.

Review: Nexus by Scott Westerfeld, Margo Lanagan & Deborah Biancotti.

Title – Nexus
Series – Zeroes #3
Authors – Scott Westerfeld, Margo Lanagan & Deborah Biancotti
How I Got It – From the publisher
Pages – 432 pages
Publication Date – November 2017 by Allen & Unwin
ISBN – 9781925267259
My Rating – β˜…β˜…β˜…β˜…/5

“The Zeroes are in disarray. One of them has vanished. One of them is in prison. The rest of them are on the most-wanted list. And something big is brewing.”

Bellweather is being held in a high-security prison, accused of murdering Swarm. He’s alone and unable to use his power. Flicker, Mob, Crash and Scam are on the run – wanted for domestic terrorism. And the FBI have a secret weapon of their own – a teenage girl with a power the Zeroes have never seen before.

After breaking Bellweather out of prison the Zeroes travel to New Orleans, where Mardi Gras crowds promise power to anyone who can channel it. It’s there that an army of Zeroes are gathering around a very powerful leader. And they don’t have anything good planned.

Time is running out. The Zeroes need to trust each other again and combine their powers for good to stop the coming threat.Β DVYpwdyV4AA4fan

I received a copy of Nexus from Allen and Unwin New Zealand to review. This is the final book in the Zeroes series. You can click the links for my review of the first two books, Zeroes and Swarm.

I enjoyed both Zeroes and Swarm more than I thought I would. So I was looking forward to finding out how the story would end. I didn’t want to go into Nexus with any expectations so there was no way I could be disappointed. However the story ended. I did have one thing that I wanted to happen though. I won’t say what here.

I think Nate has annoyed me in all three books now. I never liked that his power meant he had control over the Zeroes and the fact that he loved it. But his obsession in Nexus with the leader of the group in New Orleans was ridiculous. He didn’t even know what this person was up toΒ  – good or bad. But I am glad Riley found her voice. I definitely preferred her as a leader over Nate.

Speaking of the leader in New Orleans… I have no idea what happened to make them come up with this insane plan but clearly it wasn’t worth it. I don’t know if I want to know their story but I think it might have been interesting. Or maybe not.

I am glad that there was kind of an epilogue to Nexus and there was a way to see what happened to most of the characters. But I did feel bad for Ethan. I definitely prefer when a series has an actual ending.

I can’t remember if there was ever an answer to where their powers came from though? It was a question I had when I was reading the first book. I think all the Zeroes were born in 2000? Or I could be completely wrong. But I did want to know where they came from. Especially because Riley got a power but her twin didn’t…

The Zeroes series was really good. I wasn’t sure if I’d like it at first. The superpowers thing drew me in with the first book because I love Marvel and DC movies. But there was just something about it that had me read the next two books.

If you like X-Men (kids developing random powers) then you should check out the Zeroes series.

*Thank you Allen and Unwin New Zealand for sending me a copy to review*

– Aimee.


Review: Still Me by Jojo Moyes.

Title – Still Me
Series – Me Before You #3
Author – Jojo Moyes
How I Got It – From the publisher
Pages – 480 pages
Publication Date – January 23rd 2018 by Michael Joseph
ISBN – 9780718183196
RRP – $30.00
My Rating – β˜…β˜…β˜…β˜…/5

“Lou Clark knows too many things . . .

She knows how many miles lie between her new home in New York and her new boyfriend Sam in London.

She knows her employer is a good man and she knows his wife is keeping a secret from him.

What Lou doesn’t know is she’s about to meet someone who’s going to turn her whole life upside down.

Because Josh will remind her so much of a man she used to know that it’ll hurt.

Lou won’t know what to do next, but she knows that whatever she chooses is going to change everything.”Β 

I received a copy of Still Me from Penguin Random House New Zealand to review. This is the third book in the Me BeforeΒ You series.Β DVn6EXwVMAALufa

I’ve enjoyed all three books in this series. I was only ever expecting there to be one book, Me Before You, and it’s still my favourite of the three. But I do like the other two as well.

I love Lou! She’s just so uniquely herself and I love reading about her outfits even though I’m not into fashion at all. I also love her family, especially her parents! I think they’ve made me laugh out loud in every book.

I was really looking forward to seeing what Lou got up to in New York City because knowing her luck it wouldn’t be smooth sailing. I wasn’t expecting anything bad to happen but still. I mean, she had fallen off a roof!

There was one thing I didn’t like about Still Me and its big part of why I couldn’t give the book five stars. I felt like the Will Traynor doppelgΓ€nger was a bit much and completely unnecessary. The story could have done without it. It just felt like a way to keep Will in Lou’s story and there was already a pretty good way he was connected to her time in New York without this guy… So I don’t get why Josh needed to look like Will. I just wish that one detail wasn’t in it. I mean, she couldn’t even introduce him to people who knew Will without thinking she’d be judged. I just don’t get why he was even needed in this?

Anyway, Lou and her family definitely made up for it. Oh and a few new characters from New York were great too. I’m not going to say who but the neighbour was one of my favourite characters in Still Me.

I feel like there doesn’t need to be another book after this. Lou seems like she’s in a great place from where the book ended. I’m happy to leave her there. I’ll definitely miss reading about what Lou and her family are getting up to but I feel like a fourth book would drag it on.

I have loved the Me Before You series/trilogy. Whatever it is. And I love Lou, her parents and Will.

If you haven’t read these books then I definitely recommend them! Especially for the characters and how funny they are.

*Thank you Penguin Random House New Zealand for sending me a copy to review*

– Aimee.

Review- Harry Potter: A History of Magic by The British Library.

Title – Harry Potter: A History of Magic
Author – The British Library
How I Got It – From the publisher
Pages – 256 pages
Publication Date – October 20th 2017 by Bloomsbury
ISBN – 9781408890769
My Rating – β˜…β˜…β˜…β˜…β˜…/5

“Harry Potter: A History of Magic is the official book of the exhibition, a once-in-a-lifetime collaboration between Bloomsbury, J.K. Rowling and the brilliant curators of The British Library.Β 

It promises to take readers on a facinating journey through the subjects studied at Hogwarts School of Whitchcraft and Wizardry – from Alchemy and Potions classes through to Herbology and Care of Magical Creature.”

I received a copy of Harry Potter: A History of Magic from Bloomsbury Australia to review.Β Β DUv0WJdVwAABMGf

I read a copy of Harry Potter: A Journey Through a History of Magic last year and even though I liked it, I felt like the target audience was families and children. If you want to check out my review of that edition you can here. But this edition definitely has a lot more information and is targeted toward older readers.

I haven’t been to the exhibition, even though I’d love to, so I can’t say if all of what is shown at the exhibition is included in the book. But I don’t see why it wouldn’t…

I had read some things in this from the other edition. But this one had a lot more information. My favourite parts were from Rowling’s archives and the illustrations from Jim Kay and Olivia Lomenech Gill. I did like reading all the other parts of the exhibit, especially because I won’t see it in person. They were really interesting.

There’s no question that I preferred this edition of Harry Potter: A History of Magic to the other one. I do wish that I could see it in person but I’m glad that Bloomsbury, J.K. Rowling and The British Library created this amazing book for people who can’t travel to London.

If you’re a fan of Harry Potter then I definitely recommend reading a copy of this. Especially if you can’t see it in person too.

*Thank you Bloomsbury Australia for sending me a copy to review*

– Aimee.