The City of Brass by S.A. Chakraborty.

Title – The City of Brass
Series – The Daevabad trilogy #1
Author –  S.A. Chakraborty
How I Got It – From the pubblishers
Pages – 544 pages
Publication Date – January 22nd 2018 by HarperCollins Publishers
ISBN – 9780008239404
My Rating – ★★★/5

Eighteenth century Cairo. The cities outcasts make a living swindling the rich Ottoman nobles and foreign invaders.

Their old stories still linger – tales of spirits and djinn, of cities hidden somewhere in the desert full of riches and magic.

Some people wish their lives could be filled with wonder. But not Nahri, she’s aware the things she can do are just tricks and sleight of hand – there’s no such thing as magic. All Nahri wants is to leave Cairo and study medicine. DXO3EIuUMAAbZey

I received a copy of The City of Brass from HarperCollins New Zealand to review. I’d heard good things about this book before I started it but it took me longer to get through than I expected. Not only because it’s kind of a big book but because I found one of the character’s POV annoying.

I put off writing this review so I could give myself time to think. But now I’m not really sure why Ali’s chapters annoyed me so much. I mean, I can’t even figure out who was worse, the djinn or the daeva? There were a lot of different tribes that were treated horribly and all because they were haf-human? But Ali wanted better for these people – or shafit I think they were called? So why did I find him annoying for wanted the place he lived to be better? To treat everyone equally? I don’t even know.

Maybe it was all the stuff Dara said to Nahri at the beginning about the djinn? But he was predictable and very annoying looking back on it. So was Nahri. I get she was put in a position she wasn’t expecting or even wanted and she was just expected to be what her mother was. But all the complaining just drove me a little crazy and by the end of the book I didn’t really care what happened to her or Dara.

Speaking of the ending… That was I think the best part. There was a great twist. It was just a pity that it took over 500 pages to get there and it really felt like it just dragged. Like there was too much information and not enough action for me. A lot of things felt unnecessary and just fillers to make the book longer which meant the story just dragged on and on. I’m not sure that I’ll be picking up the sequel. I kind of want to know what happens with the twist but I’m just not invested in any of the characters.

I did love that it was set in a country I’ve never been to, well until they went to Daevabad anyway. I think the only other books I’ve read that were also kind of set in Egypt are The Kane Chronicles. I do love reading about other countries and cultures.

I really wish I had liked this more but I guess it just wasn’t for me. I liked the magic and the fact there were djinn but again, I don’t think I’ll continue with the other two books.

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

– Aimee.

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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 – ★★★★★/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. 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 – ★★★★★/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. 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 – ★★★★★/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 GeminaDWbW7vcU0AUzyya

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’s AIDAN… What can I say about AIDAN? Well he didn’t disappoint. Even though he killed all those people I still missed 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.

March TBR.

monthlytbr-copy

I thought it was about time I shared my March TBR. I know I’m a bit late this month but oh well. Hopefully I’ll be more organised next moth.

DXJskAZUQAE1hRE

I’ve only read two books so far this month but they were both really long and one took me a while to get through because of a character I didn’t like. Actually they both had a character I didn’t like.

So I’ve read The City of Brass and Children of Blood and Bone. And I loved Children of Blood and Bone. I gave it five stars. I ended up giving The City of Brass four stars. I’ll post reviews of both soon.

I’m trying to decide what to read next. It’s between Deception and Scythe. I’m leaning more towards Deception because the first book in the Dark Matter trilogy, Contagion, was a fast read for me.

And then who knows? I’m a mood reader so these books aren’t in any type of order. I read The City of Brass first because it was on my February TBR and I didn’t get to it. I’ll guess I’ll see what mood I’m in when I finish my next read.

What’s on your March TBR?

Aimee.

February Book Haul.

Watercolor flower wreath background for beautiful design

I thought it was about time that I shared my February book haul. I know it’s a little late but better late than never I guess. DXZPYvrVQAAJQfO

So last month I got a total of 20 books. I bought ten and received ten to review.

I’d read three before but wanted different copies and out of the rest I only managed to read one last month.

I cannot believe how much my reading has slowed down since last year. But I am watching more TV at night now instead of reading so that might be why? But I like having a break from reading sometimes. I think I burnt myself out last year and three reading slumps were what came of it. Anyway, onto my book haul.

So the first book I got last month was Almost Midnight. I bought a copy of this randomly. 1I wasn’t looking for it. I do have a copy of one of the short stories in this book, Kindred Spirits, but haven’t actually read it yet.

This edition is really pretty in person, it had glitter all over the book. I don’t know when I’ll get around to reading it. Maybe if I fall behind in my reading challenge.

I’ve read a few of Rainbow Rowell’s books and I think my favourite out of the ones I’ve read might be Landline? But Fangirl is still on my TBR. I have a copy of that, I just haven’t gotten around to reading it yet.

The next book I also bought for myself. I actually sent money to my cousin in England to pick me up a copy of this because I loved the Waterstones edition and couldn’t find it on2 Book Depository. Well, I think it’s a Waterstones edition?

Anyway this is the first book in Philip Pullman’s new series. I have to confess that I’ve only read Northern Lights in the His Dark Materials trilogy but I really enjoyed it and I plan on continuing the trilogy at some point this year. Then I will pick up La Belle Sauvage.

This edition also has a daemon inside the cover. I think there were a few you could get but I can only remember three, the monkey, one that I think was Pan (??) and a cat. I got the cat. There are more photos of the book on my Instagram but I’m sure you could Google to see too.

I also finally got the Shadow and Bone trilogy last month. I’ve been wanting to read these 3for years but the library I used to go to didn’t have them and I never got around to getting myself a copy of them until now. But that doesn’t mean I’ll be reading them anytime soon. I’ve had books sitting unread on my shelves for years and yet I still buy more…

I do want to read at least the first book this year though. At least then I’ll know if I should get copies of the Six of Crows duology. I’ve been really tempted to just buy them now but I don’t even know if I’ll like this trilogy. Which is why I haven’t actually bought them even though the hardbacks are so pretty with their sprayed edges! I love these editions though and the box set even came with a map!

Another book I bought for myself. Well, this one is a graphic novel of a book. I loved 4Marie Lu’s Legend trilogy so when I saw this for only $3 I had to get it. I don’t read a lot of graphic novels. The last one I read was the Northern Lights edition. I don’t know if the other two books have graphic novels though…

I haven’t read this yet. I’m planning to read it if I fall behind on this years reading challenge on Goodreads because graphic novels are really fast reads. And I haven’t read this trilogy in years!

I also want to get this trilogy in hardback too because my copies are different sizes and it frustrates me. I like have a series be the same size.

The next book was sent to me from Walker Books Australia to review. I’ve heard really 5good things about Scythe and I cannot wait to read it. It’s actually on my March TBR but I don’t know when I’ll pick it up…

I can’t remember what this is about and I don’t want to assume things here because I’ll probably just be wrong so I’m not going to. Someone told me that it made her cry both times they read it. It takes a lot for a book. TV show or movie to make me cry. I think I cry more watching something than reading though but there have been books that have made me cry. I can’t remember what the last one was though. I just looked at my reading challenge on Goodreads and none of the books I’ve read this year have made me cry. So I guess I’ll see if this one does when I eventually pick it up.

The next two books were sent to my from HarperCollins New Zealand to review. Firstlife is the first book in a trilogy I think. I think it was something about you live your first life6 and then die and go on to the next one? Which is your actual life? Oh wow that is a crap summary but it’s been a while since I read the synopsis.

That ‘hot price’ on the cover really annoys me because I can’t take it off. Why do you do this to pretty books!!!

Anyway, Firstlife is on my March TBR too. I don’t have my TBR in an order of when I’ll read the books. I just pick up a book I’m in the mood for. I think I tried to have them in some kind of order once and it never worked. Looks like I’m a mood reader. Especially if it’s a contemporary. I have to be in the mood for one of them to read them.

HarperCollins NZ also sent me a copy of Zenith to review. I love sci-fi books but I haven’t 7been hearing good things about this and to be honest it’s kind of put me off a little bit. I mean, I’ll read it eventually because it’s a review book but I’m just not in the mood for it yet. I will say that my expectations have dropped though. I’m not going to go into it expecting to have the same opinion as everyone else but the things I’ve heard just aren’t making me excited to read it.

I do like the cover though and the story still sounds good. I kind of hope I like it but if it’s as bad as I’ve heard it is then I also don’t want to at the same time? I don’t know.

I bought the hardback edition of Illuminae last year when I saw it at a local store for $7. So obviously I had to have the other two in hardback. Gemina arrived last month and it is8 gorgeous! I love the Illuminae Files and can’t wait for my copy of Obsidio to arrive. It’s finally been shipped!!

I really want to re-read this trilogy but it’ll have to wait until later in the year or next year. I have too many review copies I need to read first.

If you haven’t read Illuminae and Gemina then I cannot recommend them enough. They’re so unique and amazing and Gemina has beautiful illustrations by Marie Lu too. I gave both books five stars and I’ve already read them twice. I actually re-read them when I heard Obsidio’s publication date had been pushed back.

Walker Books Australia sent me an ARC of Small Spaces to review. This is a debut novel (I 9think) and comes out in April. It’s also a YA thriller and I love thrillers so I’m hoping to pick it up soon.

I can’t remember what this is about. I do remember requesting it and I think I read a synopsis but I’m not sure. I think I read it last year… My memory is crap though.

I think this is also from an Australian author too. I don’t read many ‘local’ authors. I mean, Australia isn’t really local, I’m in New Zealand, but it’s not like Australia is that far away. And I know a couple of New Zealand authors that fall under the LoveOZYA category so I guess we share…

Allen and Unwin New Zealand surprised me last month and sent me a copy of Obsidio to10 review. This is the only review book that I received last month that I read. There was no way I was waiting until closer to the review date to read it. That would drive me crazy. My review will be up when Obsidio is officially released in New Zealand but I will say that I gave it five stars too. This trilogy was amazing! But I’m not saying anything else here. You’ll just have to wait for my review.

The ANZ edition is so shiny though! I had to angle the book away from me because I kept showing up in the cover. I can’t wait to see what the hardback looks like in person. I don’t think it’s shiny though.

The next two books I got because I am buying The Selection Series in the hardback 11editions. Now I have the first three. When I first picked up The Selection and The Elite a few years ago I heard The CW were making it into a TV show and I wanted to read the book first. Well that never happened but I did fall in love with the story and America and Maxon.

I didn’t acutally think I would because it’s kind of like The Bachelor except with royalty and also sort of dystopian. The third book, The One, has a lot more action. Well, when I say action I really mean death. Which I did not see coming by the way. I know people don’t like The Heir and The Crown but I did. Eadlyn was annoying at first but as she grew up I found her less annoying. 12

I’m planning on buying The Heir, The Crown and Happily Ever After in hardback too. I’m not in any rush because I’ve read the series so I know what happens.

I was planning on re-reading them as I got them too but that hasn’t happened yet. Probaby because I need to catch up on my review books from last year and this year first. Taking a break over the holidays really put me behind and I haven’t caught up yet. I don’t even know if I will unless I stop requesting more books. Which I probably should. But there are so many good books coming out this year!

I bought a copy of The Librarian of Auschwitz from Book Depository when I saw it for 13$14. That’s not bad for a hardback in New Zealand. Anyway, this is based on a true story and has been translated into English. I haven’t read a book set in Auschwitz before so it’ll be different. I’ve read The Diary of a Young Girl a few times and Anne Frank Remembered, which was so sad but really good too.

My mother is reading this at them moment. Well, she’s been at 21 pages for the last two weeks so I can’t say she’s actually reading it. But she knows I won’t be picking it up any time soon so there’s no rush for her to finish it. I do want to read The Librarian of Auschwitz this year though.

Lighthouse Media New Zealand sent me a copy of Children of Blood and Bone to review. I’m actually reading this now and it’s so good! The release for New Zealand is the 13th I14 think so I have time to finish it and get my review up. I do recommend reading this though, it’s so good!!

I’ve also bought a copy of the Barnes and Noble special edition. I’m hoping it arrives in once piece. I’ve never bought anything from them before but I couldn’t pass up that edition! It’s so pretty. I also chose the cheapest shipping which means the longest. But I didn’t need it straight away because I have this to review.

But if you haven’t got a copy or weren’t planning on getting one then you definitely should! Or get it from a library! The magic and characters are amazing! And the cover is gorgeous.

HarperCollins New Zealand sent me a copy of The Queen’s Rising to review. This also has 15a pretty cover. And no I don’t remember what it’s about. But I’m assuming it’s about a queen.

This isn’t on my TBR for March but I think if I get time I might squeeze it on? But I’ll have to see what happens. So far I’ve only read The City of Brass, which was good, and I’m 3/4 way through Children of Blood and Bone. They are both big books though and my copy of Children of Blood and Bone has tiny text. Hopefully I’ll finish it in the next couple of days. And then I’ll figure out what I want to read next. I have six books to choose from. I also still need to post my March TBR…

So the last books I received in February were the 10th anniversary editions of the Chaos Walking Trilogy. These editions are beautiful and even have black sprayed edges. I’m 16hoping to read The Knife of Never Letting Go soon. I don’t have it on my TBR but hopefully my reading picks up again soon. I don’t know why it’s slowed down so much.

What books did you get in February?

– 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 – ★★★★/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.” 

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