Review: The Crown’s Game by Evelyn Skye.

Title โ€“ The Crown’s Game
Series โ€“ The Crown’s Game #1
Author โ€“ Evelyn Skye
How I Got It โ€“ From the publisher
Pages โ€“ 416 pages
Publication Date โ€“ May 17th 2016 by Balzer + Bray
ISBN โ€“ 9780062560605
My Rating โ€“ โ˜…โ˜…โ˜…โ˜…/5

Vika and Nikolai are enchanters – the only enchanters in Russia. The tsar needs a powerful enchanter to help him with his enemies. So the Crown’s Game is initiated.

The winner will become the Imperial Enchanter and the tsar’s most trusted advisor. The loser will be sentenced to death.

I received a copy of The Crown’s Game from HarperCollins New Zealand to review. This is the first book in a duology.ย DGB1t_4UwAMwaVm

I haven’t read a lot of books set in Russia so I wasn’t really sure what to expect politics wise or how close this was to true events – aside from the obvious (magic). I don’t know if characters in the royal family actually existed. I don’t know anything about Russian history.

I don’t know how many times I’ve said this but I am so sick of love triangles. I’m pretty sure if I’d known there was one in this book before I started reading then it probably would have put me off. So I’m glad I didn’t know but I still wish it wasn’t a thing anymore. I also thought it was really obvious who Vika would choose and I’m just assuming they’ll get together in the next book.

I thought the magic in The Crown’s Game was really interesting. I don’t think I’ve read anything like it before. Which made me want to read about the history or magic in Russia, or this version of Russia, and the history of the Imperial Enchanter.

I found Skye’s writing beautiful. The way she bought Vika and Nikolai’s magic alive on the pages kept me coming back to this book even though the love triangle drove me crazy.

I figured that the love triangle and all the secrets would eventually come between these friends. Because the love triangle (how many times have I said that?) had Vika and two friends. Not messy at all. I can’t remember if the truth behind Nikolai’s father was revealed to everyone or just him but I’m expecting it to come out in the next book. You can’t drop a bomb like that and not have any fallout.

I don’t know when I’ll get to the sequel, The Crown’s Fate, because my latest reading slump has been horrible and I have so many books to catch up on. But I am hoping to get to it soon.

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

– Aimee.

 

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August Wrap Up.

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I had a couple of reading slumps in August but still managed to read eleven books which I don’t think was that bad. So I’m just going to jump into the list and my ratings.

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The Crown’s Gameย by Evelyn Skye –ย โ˜…โ˜…โ˜…โ˜…/5
The Studentย by Iain Ryan –ย โ˜…โ˜…โ˜…/3
Darien: Empire of Saltย by C.F. Iggulden –ย โ˜…โ˜…โ˜…/5
I Have No Secretsย by Penny Joelson –ย โ˜…โ˜…โ˜…โ˜…/5
The Cause of Deathย by Dr. Cynric Temple-Camp –ย โ˜…โ˜…โ˜…โ˜…/5
A Stranger in the Houseย by Shari Lapena –ย โ˜…โ˜…โ˜…โ˜…/5
Tell It to the Moonย by Siobhan Curham –ย โ˜…โ˜…โ˜…โ˜…/5
Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Themย by J.K. Rowling –ย โ˜…โ˜…โ˜…โ˜…โ˜…/5 (re-read)
Stars Aboveย by Marissa Meyer –ย โ˜…โ˜…โ˜…โ˜…/5
And Fire Came Downย by Emma Viskic –ย โ˜…โ˜…โ˜…โ˜…/5
Moonriseย by Sarah Crossan –ย โ˜…โ˜…โ˜…โ˜…/5

I did participate in ARC August for the first two weeks in August but I think that’s what put me into my first reading slump – trying to finish all the ARCs on my list. I always try to stick to a TBR but it doesn’t always work. With me trying to force myself to read the five books I had on my ARC August TBR it just made me not want to read.

The second reading slump happened when I finished Tell It to the Moon and I have no idea why. So I ended up re-reading Fantastic Beasts and then finally picking up Stars Above, which has been on my shelves since it was released.

Anyway, I don’t think I did that badly. Hopefully September will be better but I’m not going to hold my breath.

How many books did you read in August and what was your favourite?

– Aimee.

WWW Wednesday [August 9th 2017] โ€“

 

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This meme is hosted by Sam over atย Taking on a World of Words.ย All you have to do isย answer the following three questions in a post and then put a link to that post in the Comments over atย Taking on a World of Words.

The questions are:
1. What are you currently reading?
2. What did you recently finish reading?
3. What do you think youโ€™ll read next?

Currently Reading โ€“ ย DFy3ukSUIAAFpZq
I haven’t taken a photo of my current read yet because the weather is crap and so is my lighting…

Anyway, I started I Have No Secrets this morning. I’m not that far in yet but I like what I’ve read so far.

This book follows Jemma who has cerebral palsy. She can’t move or talk so she relies on her parents and carer for everything. But Jemma is smart and loves to learn. She also knows a lot of secrets – and one of them is so terrible she doesn’t know how to deal with it. But what can she do about it?

I really like Jemma and I am looking forward to finding out more about her and her family.ย DGajxgdU0AAN5B0

Recently Finished โ€“
I finished reading Darien: Empire of Salt yesterday and I really enjoyed it. It did take me a while to get into but I think that was because I wasn’t in the mood to read not because of the story.

This is the first book in a YA fantasy series. It follows a few different characters and I was confused what was going on at the start but it did all come together in the end. I’ll be reviewing this soon so if you’re interested in reading that keep an eye out.

I also read The Student by Iain Ryan. This is a very shot book but it felt like there was a DGWQ9JZUQAA9v89lot going on. Murder, drugs, gang members and this one guy is in the middle of it all. Not for anything he’s done but because of the company he keeps and the fact he deals drugs.

I don’t really know what to think of this book. I don’t like drugs at all so I didn’t like the MC for dealing them or his friends for dealing them either. I guess I’ll have to get my thoughts together when I write my review… Or before then actually… Anyway hopefully I’ll get this reviewed soon too.

The Student and Darien: Empire of Salt were also books I read for ARC August. Oh and so is I Have No Secrets.ย DGB1t_4UwAMwaVm

I finished The Crown’s Game too and I really enjoyed it. It’s not what I was expecting but in a really good way. To be honest I don’t actually know what I was expecting but that wasn’t it.

I can’t wait to read the sequel, The Crown’s Fate, even though I’m like 100% sure how it’ll end for two of the characters. I’m not really into it for the romance or whatever but I do want to see how the story will end. I have no idea when I’ll get to it though.

Reading Nextย โ€“ย 4
A Stranger is the House was sent to me from Penguin Random House New Zealand to review. It was a complete surprise but it sounds like something I’ll enjoy reading so I’m looking forward to picking it up.

All I know about this is that a woman is in her kitchen making dinner and then she’s waking up in the hospital with no memory of how she got there or what happened. Her husband doesn’t know what to think but her best friend seems to think she was up to no good.

I can’t wait to find out what’s going on in this book!

What have you been reading?

– Aimee.

August TBR.

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I know this is a week late but better late than never I guess… I have read two and a bit books this month but only one of them is actually in the TBR pile… One I totally forgot about and the other one I was reading at the time and it slipped my mind.

I’ve read The Crown’s Game by Evelyn Skye and The Student by Iain Ryan. I enjoyed both of them but I did like The Crown’s Game more. I’m currently reading Darien: Empire of Salt by C.F. Iggulden. This is the first book in a new YA fantasy trilogy/series. I’m enjoying this too but I just haven’t been in the mood to read so I’m kind of struggling with it. I don’t think it’s the book though.

Then there’s the books on my TBR that I haven’t gotten to yet. My next read will be I DGLyLltVoAAjiAtHave No Secrets by Penny Joelson. This sounds really good and I can’t wait to pick it up. It will also be my third book for ARC August.

A few of the books on this month’s TBR were also on my July TBR… I have been reading really slowly lately. My new medication makes me nauseous and I just can’t read when I feel like throwing up all the time. But I’m hoping to actually read Godblind, Midnight Jewel and Song of the Current this month.

It’s kind of an ambitious TBR pile considering my reading has been slowing down but whatever. We’ll find out how many I’ll actually get through at the end of the month.

What’s on your TBR for August?

– Aimee.

WWW Wednesday [August 2nd 2017] โ€“

 

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This meme is hosted by Sam over atย Taking on a World of Words.ย All you have to do isย answer the following three questions in a post and then put a link to that post in the Comments over atย Taking on a World of Words.

The questions are:
1. What are you currently reading?
2. What did you recently finish reading?
3. What do you think youโ€™ll read next?

Currently Reading โ€“ย DGB1t_4UwAMwaVm
I’ve been in a reading slump for the past week I think. I have been forcing myself to read but I haven’t been reading much. I was hoping that The Crown’s Game would help get me out of it and I am enjoying the book but it’s just not helping that much. Or, my phone and social media keep distracting me. Plus Game of Thrones and Teen Wolf are back and I was watching them the other day instead of reading. So those are all my excuses.ย 

This is the first book in a duology I think. It takes place in Russia but an alternate Russia, one with magic. There are two enchanters competing in a game to be the Imperial Enchanter. It’s been pretty good so far.

Recently Finished โ€“ย DFsce4jUAAAn4vE
I read The Leaving last week. I think this might have been the book that put me in a reading slump. It wasn’t as good as I was expecting. I really enjoyed The Possible when I read it a few months ago so I guess I had my hopes up for this which is always a bad thing to do.

Anyway, so six kids go missing and eleven years later five come back with no memory of where they were or who took them.

I thought it sounded really interesting but it was just a little bit weird for me. I don’t know. I might do a review on this, I’m not really sure yet.ย DFdGElAXgAIw6N7

I also finished Countless which I really enjoyed. I think I talked about what this book was about in my last WWW Wednesday post so I don’t really feel like repeating myself. But I will say this was surprisingly good. To be honest, I wasn’t expecting anything when I started this which is probably why it was so good.

I will be reviewing this soon-ish. I don’t really know when. I haven’t written it yet and I have a few others to write first so if you’re interested in seeing my thoughts on Countless then keep an eye out for my review.

Reading Nextย โ€“ย 16
I have a few books that I want to read next and I do have my ARC August TBR figured out but I just found a book that I was sent a few months ago and never got around to so I think I’ll be reading that.

I don’t actually have a photo of it by itself but it’s The Student by Iain Ryan. I don’t know much about it but I did think it sounded interesting when I first read the synopsis. This is an ARC so it’ll go towards my ARC August post at the end of the week. If I get it read by then…

What have you read in the last week?

– Aimee.

Monthly wrap up & TBR

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I didn’t read as much as I wanted to in June. I mean, nine books is still good it just wasn’t what I had planned. But whatever.

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Contagionย by Teri Terry –ย โ˜…โ˜…โ˜…โ˜…/5
One of Us is Lyingย by Karen M. McManus –ย โ˜…โ˜…โ˜…โ˜…/5
The Cowsย by Dawn O’Porter –ย โ˜…โ˜…โ˜…โ˜…/
The Names They Gave Usย by Emery Lord –ย โ˜…โ˜…โ˜…โ˜…/5
Pieces of Youย by Eileen Merriman –ย โ˜…โ˜…โ˜…โ˜…/5
Idaย by Alison Evans –ย โ˜…โ˜…โ˜…/5
Defy the Starsย by Claudia Gray –ย โ˜…โ˜…โ˜…/5
Flame in the Mistย by Renee Ahdieh –ย โ˜…โ˜…โ˜…โ˜…/5
Beyond the Wallย Tanya Landman –ย โ˜…โ˜…โ˜…โ˜…/5

So read some pretty good books in June. I think my favourite was Flame in the Mist. But I’ll talk about that more in my review.

Onto my July TBR.

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I’ve almost finished reading The Glittering Court and I’ve actually enjoyed it. I’m looking forward to reading Midnight Jewel soon.

I have been thinking that I might mix up my review books with some of my own books. I think that’s what’s been putting me in a reading slump. So I’m not expecting to stick to this TBR too closely.

What’s on your July TBR?

Aimee.

June Book Haul.

DDnXvkMUAAE_3FMI got a total of 17 books this month. Three I’ve read previously and just wanted my own copy. The rest I haven’t managed to get to yet.

So I’m just going to jump right into the haul because they always take so long to type up.

So the first book I got was Lady Midnight by Cassandra Clare. I used to have all The

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Mortal Instruments and Infernal Devices books but when we moved I got rid of a lot of books and DVDs. But I’ve wanted to read The Dark Artifices for a while. I know the second book came out recently but I’m going to see if I like this before getting a copy of that.

I don’t really know much about this other than Emma wants to know what really happened to her parents.

I don’t think I’ll be reading this any time soon because my TBR is crazy and this is like 800 pages. But I hope to have read it by the end of the year. Maybe…

I wasn’t planning on getting both the hardcover and paperback editions of Philosopher’sย 1Stone. I’d pre-ordered the hardback months ago from Book Depository. But then I saw the paperback in a bookstore over here for 20% off and free Hogwarts house postcards. So, I couldn’t say no.

I read the extras inside the paperback edition when I got it and I really enjoyed them. I also love all the new illustrations too. I didn’t have a very long look though. I just sort of skimmed everything. I’ll read them all again one day. There’s no rush.

What Hogwarts house are you in? Are you planning on getting all the house editions or just the house you’re in?ย 3

I received an ARC of Empire of Salt from Penguin Random House New Zealand to review. This is the first book in a new fantasy trilogy (I think) and I’m pretty sure it’s YA… But I’m not 100% sure.

I’m also not really sure what’s it about other than 12 families fighting for one throne. Kind of sounds like A Game of Thrones but I don’t want to compare it to that before even reading it because I’ll just get disappointed. I love the Song of Ice and Fire series. I love fantasy books so I’m looking forward to reading this. I think it’s released in August so I’ll read it closer to the release date.

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HarperCollins New Zealand sent me a copy of The Crown’s Fate to review. I haven’t read The Crown’s Game, even though I’ve had a copy of it since it was released last year.

But I think I’ll be putting The Crown’s Game on my July TBR, which I haven’t even really thought of yet. And if I have time I’ll try to squeeze The Crown’s Fate onto it as well. But knowing my reading at the moment I don’t think that’s going to happen.

I don’t really know much about these other than they’re set in Russia (I think) but I’ve heard really good things about both of them so I’m excited to read them.ย 5

Hardie Grant Egmont sent me a copy of The Huntress: Sea to review. I think that’s how you do the title? I requested this a few months ago so I can’t remember what this is about anymore. It was sent to my old address so I didn’t receive it straight away and will admit I completely forgot about it.

I will be putting this on my July TBR since it kind of went missing for a while. I don’t know when it was released but I’m probably behind…

I finally bought a copy of Cinder. This was the last book that I needed to complete my6ย collection of The Lunar Chronicles. I love this series and wanted them all in hardbackย because I won a copy of Winter last year I think and it was a hardback so I wanted the rest of the series to match and now they do. I don’t have a copy of Fairest though because I can’t stand Levana and I don’t want that on my shelves. She’s an evil, twisted cow.

I loved this series! I’ve read the first three books twice, I had to re-read them before I could read Winter. But I haven’t read Stars Above yet. I’ll get to it one day. Soon I hope. If you haven’t read The Lunar Chronicles then I recommend finding copies.

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I received a copy of The Ones that Disappeared from Hachette New Zealand to review. I think this is set in Australia by an Australian author but I could be completely wrong.

I think this is about kids disappearing and a fictional version of what may have happened to them. I really can’t remember.

I don’t know if this will be going on my TBR for this month yet. I have another book from Hachette that will be in this post that I want to read more. If I can fit it in I definitely will though. I love this cover. It’s kind of velvety in person and so pretty.

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HarperCollins New Zealand sent me a copy of Godblind to review. I think this is a debut novel and the first in a new fantasy series.

This sounded really interesting when I first heard about it and I am really hoping to get to it this month. I know it’s about some kind of red gods but that’s all I remember. And yes, I can see that on the cover in the photo…

Speaking of the cover, it is so eye-catching. I’m not sure but I think this is an adult fantasy book and not YA but again, not 100% sure. So I’m expecting a lot of death and gore…ย 10

The next two books were sent to me from Penguin Random House New Zealand to review.

Juniper Lemon’s Happiness Index follows Juniper after the death of her sister and how she’s trying to move on/put her life back together. And she writes these index cards of happy things. But one goes missing with a big (maybe?) secret on it. And I think the book is what follows. Or something along those lines. I have heard good things about this so I’m looking forward to reading it.

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The second book I received from Penguin Random House New Zealand was Midnight Jewel. This is the sequel to The Glittering Court which I got in a giveaway but haven’t actually read yet. I’m reading it at the moment. Although I’m not really that far in but I have enjoyed what I’ve read so far.

I’ll be putting Midnight Jewel on my July TBR because I need to have it read this month. Hopefully I can get to it soon. But I don’t think I’ll be reading it straight after The Glittering Court. I have too many other books to read first. I think this is out on the 6th?ย 12

Hachette New Zealand sent me a copy of When Dimple Met Rishi to review. I have heard so many good things about this books and I am so excited to read it. I’ve been getting into contemporary books a lot more in the last couple of months. They’re a nice break from all the fantasy books I read.

When Dimple Met Rishi will definitely be going on my July TBR. I think I might actually read it really soon. I’ve got my next read picked out but it might be the one after that. Anyway, I’m just rambling now…

I went shopping alone a couple of days ago, which is never a god idea, and I saw a ‘buy

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one get one half price’ on YA books and I just couldn’t resist.

I’ve wanted to read Hunted for a while now. I’ve never actually need it in store till the day I bought it though.

I love Beauty and the Beast and I think this is a retelling. I saw the name Beast when I flicked through the book so I’m pretty sure it is. So I’m excited to read it. I haven’t read a lot of Beauty and the Beast retellings. I’m not sure when I’ll actually be reading it though, probably not any time soon because I have a crazy long TBR.ย 14

The second book I got was York. It’s the first book in a trilogy/series. I’m not really sure which.

I will admit that the cover drew me in because it’s gorgeous and so much better in person. But the story sounded pretty good when I read the synopsis. And then fact I got it for $8.50 wasn’t bad either.

I don’t know when I’ll get around to reading this. I’m not in a huge rush at the moment. Maybe when the sequel comes out.

I received a 10% off code from Book Depository earlier this month and I used it to buyย 15two books. The first book was Our Dark Duet, the sequel to This Savage Song. I read and loved This Savage Song not long after it was released.

I’m hoping Our Dark Duet picks up not long after the ending of This Savage Song. I might have to read the last couple of chapters again to see what happened but I do remember the last scene because that stuck in my head.

This is another book that I hope to read soon but I’m not really sure when I’ll actually get to. These are the first books I’ve read by V.E. Schwab. I have one of her other books, A Darker Shade of Magic, in my Book Depo wishlist. I just haven’t gotten around buying it yet.ย 16

The other book I got with my code was A Court of Wings and Ruin. I haven’t actually read the first two books in this trilogy yet but now I have them all I don’t really have an excuse, other than my crazy TBR, not to read them.

I know this is like the first three books in the series but also the story in these books has an ending or something. The size of ACOWAR is kind of putting me off wanting to read it soon. I like fast reads at the moment. Much easier to get through and get off my TBR. I need to go on a book buying ban.

The last book I received in June was sent to me from Bloomsbury Australia to review. I love17ย this cover and pirates so I cannot wait to read this.

I also can’t remember much about this because I read the synopsis so long ago but I did like the sound of what I read. And this cover is gorgeous!

So that’s my June book haul. I got some amazing books this month that I can’t wait to read.

What did you get in June??

– Aimee.