Wednesday, 25 October 2017

Warcross by Marie Lu: Book Review


For the millions who log in every day, Warcross isn’t just a game—it’s a way of life. The obsession started ten years ago and its fan base now spans the globe, some eager to escape from reality and others hoping to make a profit. Struggling to make ends meet, teenage hacker Emika Chen works as a bounty hunter, tracking down players who bet on the game illegally. But the bounty hunting world is a competitive one, and survival has not been easy. Needing to make some quick cash, Emika takes a risk and hacks into the opening game of the international Warcross Championships—only to accidentally glitch herself into the action and become an overnight sensation.



Convinced she’s going to be arrested, Emika is shocked when instead she gets a call from the game’s creator, the elusive young billionaire Hideo Tanaka, with an irresistible offer. He needs a spy on the inside of this year’s tournament in order to uncover a security problem . . . and he wants Emika for the job. With no time to lose, Emika’s whisked off to Tokyo and thrust into a world of fame and fortune that she’s only dreamed of. But soon her investigation uncovers a sinister plot, with major consequences for the entire Warcross empire.

SPOILER FREE REVIEW
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I immediately fell in love with this book from the moment I realised three things:

  1. It has the same concept of using virtual reality gaming as the anime, Sword Art Online, and I ironically started to binge watch the series the same week that I started Warcross.
  2. Emika is Chinese/American and Hideo is Japanese/British - we need more of this diversity! (And books set in Japan because UGH I LOVE JAPAN!)
  3. She is a bounty hunter and hacker who knows her way around Warcross because Hideo Tanaka inspired her to find the greatness in life after her father passed away.


Emika Chen is the new female lead that everyone should aspire to be like. She is a badass teenager who can hack into Warcross like you would simply log in to Facebook, she goes on bounty hunts for extra cash (though her success rate isn't the best), and she sports rainbow coloured hair with creative tattoos and rides an electric skateboard around the streets of New York.

The whole idea of the story is that Emika manages to spot a super rare power-up in the Warcross championship game and decides to try and grab it without anyone noticing so that she might be able to sell it and pay her landlord back the money she and her roommate, Keira, owe him. Instead of being super stealthy, she accidentally glitches herself into the game and soon after that ends up being hired by Hideo Tanaka himself to try and stop the hacker, Zero, from trying to ultimately take down the technology that is a world wide phenomenon.

I have to say one thing before I continue: BUT SERIOUSLY PEOPLE CAN USE THE WARCROSS GLASSES (and later on the contacts) FOR EVERYDAY USE AND HAVE VIRTUAL DRAGONS AND TIGERS AS PETS! LIKE HONESTLY - WHAT I WOULD GIVE TO HAVE A VIRTUAL PET LIKE PINA FROM SWORD ART ONLINE! 


The futuristic world of Warcross is super cool and every page just grips you until you find yourself half way through in under a few hours of reading. Emika is the type of girl that knows how to stand up for others when they are being bullied and go to all lengths to save the people she cares about. She doesn't just go with the flow or let people control her - I wish I was as strong of a person as her! I also wish I had her hair and tattoos but those can come later (now I'm currently deciding whether I should cosplay Emika next year at Armageddon).

Somehow I didn't end up forfeiting the review - I just had to do my best to let the world know of my new obsession!


The reason I decided I wanted to read this book wasn't because it was hyped up all over the bookish community, it was because it was one of the two choices that I could read for The Booklanders meeting that we have here in Auckland, New Zealand, which is run by Lauren who is over at Bookworm Boutique on Instagram. But HOLY CHICKEN LEGS, I enjoyed this novel so much that I literally almost self-combusted like a thousand times. The plot twists and the build ups and the romance and the friendships; I can not express fully how much this book has truly made me feel excited for future gaming, let alone future technology which could allow us to walk our pet dragons to the park and feel super awesome. A girl can dream, but she can't live forever so hurry up, Besthesda! Work your powerful magic and save the world with NerveLink technology!



Basically there is no other novel like this that I can think of and if there are any other Sword Art Online fans out there that need something to satisfy them until season 3 comes out, then READ THIS BOOK BECAUSE YOU WILL DIE IF YOU DON'T! So I gave this book a 5 out of 5 stars because it is nothing less. I'm telling you that this is the one sci-fi book that has made me feel excited for the future and that is really saying something!



What are you excited for in this book? Have you watched Sword Art Online? And if you have read Warcross, who was your favourite character and why? Let me know in the comments below!




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Thank you Penguin Random House NZ for the review copy!

Like and follow their links here:

Official Website: http://penguin.co.nz/


Go add Warcross to your Goodreads list HERE


Go buy it on MightyApe with 1 day delivery in New Zealand HERE

Buy it on Book Depository with free shipping world wide HERE

Find it on the Penguin Random House NZ website HERE




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Wednesday, 18 October 2017

My Very First WWW Wednesday! - August 30th 2017

This meme is hosted by Sam over at Taking on a World of Words. I found out about it through my friend Aimee from My Life In Books and felt like I wanted to try it out, especially since my previous, current, and future reads are literally so awesome this month!



The questions are:

1. What are you currently reading?
2. What did you recently finish reading?
3. What do you think you’ll read next?



What are you currently reading?




I literally had no idea that Warcross by Marie Lu was going to be as thrilling of a read as I had anticipated from all the hype prior to its release. However, this is quite a unique and very strange situation for me - especially considering the fact that the same week I received and started to read it, I was taking my first dive (no pun intended) into the world of Sword Art Online; an epically fantastic and highly addictive Japanese anime series about a world where a couple thousand gamers who try out a new virtual reality game called 'Sword Art Online' on their NerveGears who become trapped within the full-dive system and the only way to escape the game is to clear all 100 levels. Ugh, HELLO? This is basically screaming Warcross! Or sort of the other way around, considering the fact that the book was just released and SAO has been around for a few years now.

But before I begin to write an 1000 word essay on how much I love the idea of full-dive VRMMORPG gaming (SUPER obsessed atm btw!), I will just state that this is probably the only sci-fi YA that I've read and completely fell in love with from the minute I realised exactly what Marie Lu was getting at with the plot and world building (sorry, Divergent!). If I'm gonna scream about anything right now, I'm only going to say... WATCH SWORD ART ONLINE AND READ WARCROSS BEFORE I SELF COMBUST OR CRUMBLE AWAY LIKE DESTROYED DATA!


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Check out the book trailer:






What did you recently finish reading?




I had received A Semi-Definitive List Of Worst Nightmares by Krystal Sutherland from Penguin Random House NZ and finished it about a week and a half ago. Even so, my heart still throbs from how many feels I got. I've stated many times to many people that this book deserves to be called a 'Modern Classic'.

It was literally the most captivating and heart-warming contemporary novel I have ever read (I know I said this about every other contemporary but I cannot stress this enough). Think Cardcaptors where Sakura dresses up in super cool costumes and her friend, Madison, films while Sakura goes and defeats the monsters that belong in their Clow cards. This is basically, kinda, the embodiment of this book. But the difference is that the main character is a girl named Esther Solar, who believes her family is cursed with phobias, and a guy named Jonah, who robs her of many personal items by tricking her and then after reading through her semi-definitive list of worst nightmares decides that he wants to help her face them one by one until she reaches number 50; her worst fear ever.

If you're keen on finding out more about what I thought of it, I posted a review which you can read: A Semi-Definitive List Of Worst Nightmares by Krystal Sutherland: Book Review





What do you think you’ll read next?




I recently received The Language Of Thorns by Leigh Bardugo which is a mysteriously fascinating novel of fairytales that are based in the Grishaverse (I haven't read any of Leigh's books but I'm assuming it's part of the Six of Crows series). Two things reeled me in about this book: One, it looked ABSOLUTELY GORGEOUS! I loved how dark and mysterious the cover looked along with the thorns and the title. Two, I am OBSESSED with the idea of myths, legends, folklore, fairytales, lore, etc! Anything that is either an ancient tale that has been told since the beginning of time or something that has been created in the modern day to replicate that exact magical effect, I am all over it. I think this might be a good time to start checking out Leigh's other books too, since I may or may not need them to understand some of the tales that Leigh has in The Language of Thorns.

Oh, and if you haven't seen the cover in a physical copy before, you totally should! It feels like actual material and it just can't get any more magically beautiful! I feel so much more like a badass sorceress holding her book of shadows when it is in my hands!... Oh, too much daydreaming? Sorry!




🌟 I'm excited to know what you guys are reading right now! Have you got any awesome books lined up in your TBR? And have you got any interesting thoughts on any of the books I mentioned today? Leave me a comment below - I'd love to hear your thoughts! 🌟



Please consider donating a small tip so that I may be able to continue doing what I love! I am currently studying but I would love to be a stay-at-home mum and make a living through my blogging and BookTubing - I will do the best I can to provide top quality content that is interesting and worthy of your subscription ❤




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Monday, 9 October 2017

Flame Kissed (Seeking The Dragon - Book One) by Alexis Radcliff: Book Review


On a romantic night at a ski lodge, 17 year-old Ella Denton has the perfect opportunity to finally confess her feelings to her long-time crush, Nick Gauss, before she goes off to college. But before she has the chance, everything goes horribly wrong: Ella is kidnapped by a mysterious grinning monster-man to the heart of the Ether-Realm, a magical land with a strange red sky at the nexus of all possible worlds. She is placed in chains and taken to a golden city ruled by the dark and brooding dragon prince, Kaden Kolrath, and told that she is now his slave. 

It seems her fate is now to be lost forever in a strange land far from home, never to return to Nick or her family back home in Havery Falls. That is, until Ella discovers she carries a mysterious spark of power… a spark that could change everything, forever. 

Flame Kissed is the first book in Alexis Radcliff’s exciting new fantasy romance serial, Seeking the Dragon. It’s a short, 15,000-word novella perfect to knock out in a single, quiet evening, and one of five total episodes.

SPOILER FREE REVIEW
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I was pretty blown away when I ended up reading this all at once within an hour and felt almost compelled to read the next instalment. I don't usually get offers to read novellas as short as this but I was super pumped to have an opportunity to try something new, but it turned out to be a blissfully short experience and a great way to shove anyone out of a reading slump with a super relatable character and a beautifully crafted world filled with magic, golden cities, and brooding dragon princes.

"The golden city covered by an ethereal, translucent dome stretched out below us, with an enormous, sparkling castle at the center. The castle had seven towers, each taller than the next, and the largest of them rose up in the middle. Delicate bridges with intricate designs connected them in a spiral pattern, and the light shimmered across the surface of it all."

Ella Denton (another reason I thought the main character was absolutely awesome - I never come across people or characters who have the same name as me) is like any other teenage girl who is about to go off to college but first decides that confessing her love to her crush, Nick Gauss, is more than a good idea. She seems to be quite close to her adopted sister, Katie, as she once was with her real sister, Fiona, before her whole family was killed in the flames of a house fire. Ella miraculously survived and was thrusted into the care of another family where she took awhile to accept the truth of her real family's fate. Flames have always intimidated Ella and despite her constant attempts to avoid it, they come surging for her when she least expects them too.

The whole layout of the story was perfectly done, along with the story of how she came to be where she is and why she is such an introverted person who would rather stay home and play the piano than go out to a party with her adopted sister. The pace gave enough to catch on to important details and was fast enough that you don't get bored while waiting for the good bits - this is me saying that basically everything is the good bits, even before she is whisked away to a world of enslavement and magical dragon princes with bad attitudes and responsibility issues.

"I can still remember the terror I felt when I wondered what she meant by “whatever happens,” but before I could give her an answer, she’d slipped through the doorway and closed it behind her. That was the last time I ever saw my sister."

I have given this book a 4.5 out of 5 stars because I loved it enough to really want to read the next instalment, Flame Bound, but it just fell slightly flat of an amazing read. I feel that continuing on with the series will help me raise that impression to a full 5 stars. I also hope that the series will be printed one day so that I can put them all on my shelf - it's always awesome to imagine what could be of a series with such potential!


*I received a free electronic copy of this book from the author in exchange for an honest review*

Thank you Alexis Radcliff for the review copy!




Go add Flame Kissed to your Goodreads list HERE

Go buy it on Amazon HERE

Check out the sequel Flame Bound on Goodreads HERE and Amazon HERE
Check out Alexis' debut novel A Vanishing Glow on Goodreads HERE and Amazon HERE






Please consider donating a small tip so that I may be able to continue doing what I love! I am currently studying but I would love to be a stay-at-home mum and make a living through my blogging and BookTubing - I will do the best I can to provide top quality content that is interesting and worthy of your subscription ❤




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Wednesday, 4 October 2017

A Semi-Definitive List of Worst Nightmares by Krystal Sutherland: Book Review



Ever since Esther Solar's grandfather was cursed by Death, everyone in her family has been doomed to suffer one great fear in their lifetime. Esther's father is agoraphobic and hasn't left the basement in six years, her twin brother can t be in the dark without a light on, and her mother is terrified of bad luck.



The Solars are consumed by their fears and, according to the legend of the curse, destined to die from them. 

Esther doesn't know what her great fear is yet (nor does she want to), a feat achieved by avoiding pretty much everything. Elevators, small spaces, and crowds are all off-limits. So are haircuts, spiders, dolls, mirrors and three dozen other phobias she keeps a record of in her semi-definitive list of worst nightmares. 

Then Esther is pickpocketed by Jonah Smallwood, an old elementary school classmate. Along with her phone, money and a fruit roll-up she d been saving, Jonah also steals her list of fears. Despite the theft, Esther and Jonah become friends, and he sets a challenge for them: in an effort to break the curse that has crippled her family, they will meet every Sunday of senior year to work their way through the list, facing one terrifying fear at a time, including one that Esther hadn't counted on: love.

SPOILER FREE REVIEW
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*Trigger warnings for anxiety, depression, and cutting*




“Anxiety felt like a grapnel anchor had been pickaxed into your back, one prong in each lung, one through the heart, one through the spine, the weight curving your posture forward, dragging you down to the murky depths of the sea floor. The good news was that you kind of got used to it after a while. Got used to the gasping, brink-of-heart-attack feeling that followed you everywhere. All you had to do was grab one of the prongs that stuck out from the bottom of your sternum, give it a little shake, and say, “Listen, asshole. We’re not dying. We have shit to do.”


It feels like a century since I had last found something which really resonated with all the internal struggles and pain that I've had to suffer throughout my whole life. A Semi-Definitive List Of Worst Nightmares encaptures the whole package deal that comes with the curse of anxiety and depression. I found myself relating to almost every second sentence and had originally sat down to read at least half of the novel two days before it was due for release - I feel terrible that I was not able to complete it sooner and have one heck of a review waiting for everyone to read and hear my thoughts on. However I'm glad I was able to spend the month returning every now and then to get a fix of a beautifully truthful and empowering novel. One thing that just made me instantly love this book as much as the actual content was the fact that Esther is a natural red-head with an array of freckles on her face, and Jonah basically resembles Finn from Star Wars: The Force Awakens almost exactly and I am so glad I was given that visual because that is exactly how I pictured him for the rest of the novel!

This shot that I posted to my Instagram story could not be more accurate!


Esther Solar is introduced to us vividly in the first few pages along with a few vital pieces of information:

  1. Her family is cursed with developing unhealthy phobias which prevent them from being anything but a normal human being. 
  2. She dresses in a spontaneous costume every day - on this particular day/night she is dressed as Red Riding Hood. 
  3. Her mother, Rosemary, is afraid of bad luck, her father, Peter, is an agoraphobe and has lived in the basement for six years since his sudden confinement, and her brother, Eugene, is afraid of the darkness and and anything related to it. 
  4. She is super gullible and too kind for her own good. 
  5. She protested Dumbledore's death as a child for a week before the movie came out, even though the books were written years prior to the movie release. (She is a sweet little cinnamon roll!) 
  6. We basically need to keep reading to find out why the hell Esther would somehow eventually fall in love with Jonah Smallwood - the guy who robs her of her grandmother's bracelet, iPhone, Fruit Roll-Up, library card, copy of The Godfather, her semi-definitive list of worst nightmares, AND her diginity, all within the time-frame of four minutes in a bus stop at night. (Trust me when I say that you will enjoy the hell out of these two characters together!)

If I am going to give an accurate review of this book, I'll have to point out how important the topics discussed in this novel are and why many of the creative analogies such as The Man Who Was Death, the curse on the family, and Esther's interpretation on the way love works backwards, all have deeper meanings that we might realise. I have taken photos of particular quotes that I resonated with personally and also felt like they needed a bit of recognition.







The hard truth with mental illnesses and disabilities, but it doesn't mean that everyone does. I just felt like this was a 'in the moment' quote that I could relate to a lot. People have given up on me before, but then there are people who haven't given up on me. Chad is a great example of someone who has stayed with me for four years, even though I have ADHD, anxiety/panic disorder, and an unknown joint disease that gives me pain on a daily basis and has rendered my legs useless multiple times before. I am forever grateful for him ❤

Jonah is the love interest/semi-hero that every other novel needs (and every person that needs a little push towards confidence and self love); the type of person that would take your deepest fears and throw them at you lovingly, all the while knowing very well (sorta) that you won't actually die if you face them. He is the one who gives Esther a reason to live - in saying that, she is not suicidal, she just doesn't live a very interesting life before she bands up with Jonah to face her fears every Sunday of the week until she reaches number fifty and finds out what she's really afraid of. I have to say that this book has truly inspired me to live my life no matter the fears that I face when I start to think about the real world. I honestly felt like I was living an adventure that was exhilarating and eye-opening at the same time. I was reminded that mental illness can almost feel like a curse and death can feel like a person that is just hanging around in the shadows waiting for you to say the okay, yet at the same time you can also tell them to just f**k off.

The caption on the photo is the only one that is needed.

If this book has taught me anything, it is to know that anxiety and depression will always be a tough fight, but it is possible to come out the other side eventually. There is no instant cure but it can be managed and it is important to remember that there are many other people who suffer from the same things, if not many other mental illnesses, as well. We're not alone in the world - we can choose to either let the pain subdue us or we can choose to rage a war against the darkness and make life something worth living, even if it means facing a few fears to find the light.

I've decided to present my own list of fears so that I might inspire someone else to do the same and show that we are not all invincible but we are all human (I do believe some of us are magical shapeshifting unicorns but that is besides the point).

Things that terrify me on a daily basis:


  1. Loosing someone I love.
  2. Heights.
  3. Blood and anything to do with surgery or cut open skin. (UGH!)
  4. Crossing busy roads. (I used to have panic attacks every morning walking to school)
  5.  Depression creeping back up on me when I least expect it.
  6. Panic attacks.
  7. Wasps and hornets. (I have more faith that bees aren't a****les)
  8. Not knowing what is wrong with me. (Currently going through this crisis)
  9. I might die before I get the chance to accomplish my dream of becoming a best selling author and inspire others with my stories of struggle.
  10. Living in a city surrounded by volcanoes that are due to erupt with 1.3 million people who may or may not care.
  11. The possibility that my current life is really just a very long dream and I will wake up from a coma to a life I never wanted.
  12. Loosing both my voice and my hearing. (Both are my sources of music which keep my depression at bay. See no. 5*)
  13. New Zealand is a tiny country/island that could sink just like Hawai'ki did centuries ago. (I'm a big believer of Maori legends. Don't judge me!)
  14. Donald Trump ruling the most powerful country in the world.
  15. Racism. (It terrifies me because I've seen people be killed just because they're dark skinned and I have panic attacks thinking about loosing my partner, Chad, my daughter, Zoey, my brother, Devontaye, or anyone that I love just because their skin is darker)
  16. WETAS! THEY ALL DESERVE TO DIE! (For those who don't know, they are a native species to New Zealand and are literally spawns of the devil. They are super hard to kill–I used a whole fly spray can and tried squashing one to no avail–and they make me sick!) I dare you to search the name on Google Images.
One fear I used to have but don't anymore?: I can take a photo with no makeup on and feel confident about it! Even if there is a book in front of my face in this one. Baby steps, guys. Baby steps.


I have given this novel 5 out of 5 stars because I have never read a book in my life that I have related to so much (Twilight doesn't count right now, okay?) and felt like it deserves a place on the modern classics table for future generations to study in school and refer to for inspirational quotes when life feels overwhelming and sometimes like nothing at all. Krystal Sutherland has definitely done everyone a huge service by writing such a beautiful story which will always stay close to our hearts. I will go to the ends of the earth to make sure this book does not become underrated in the bookish community. We need more relatable stories like this (as I've probably stated many times before) because so many people like myself need them when we're at our worst to sit down with and feel like we have a chance to be revived. I sat down a couple of weeks ago when I was drowning in stress and tears, and having Esther and Jonah to comfort my fears by facing their own gave me so much strength that I managed to avoid a panic attack. I ended up having one a few days later anyway but somehow I felt a little more hopeful afterwards when I reminded myself that so many people suffered the same way as me even for the simplest things like being in the presence of frogs, corn fields, or lobsters.

Krystal got all the nostalgic feels perfectly - I love little details like this one!


Thanks to A Semi-Definitive List Of Worst Nightmares, I am super keen to read Krystal's first novel, Our Chemical Hearts and fall in love with her writing all over again. I've always been interested in dipping into the genre of contemporary with my writing, so maybe Krystal's books will be the reason I run head first into action - no fear, no pain, just love, passion, and novels of inspiration.




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✮A Semi-Definitive List Of Worst Nightmares!✮



Thank you Penguin Random House NZ for the review copy!


Like and follow their links here:

Official Website: http://penguin.co.nz/



Please contact any one of these helplines if you need help:

• LIFELINE: 0800 543 354 (available 24/7)
• SUICIDE CRISIS HELPLINE: 0508 828 865 (0508 TAUTOKO) (available 24/7)
• YOUTHLINE: 0800 376 633
• NEED TO TALK? Free call or text 1737 (available 24/7)
• KIDSLINE: 0800 543 754 (available 24/7)
• WHATSUP: 0800 942 8787 (1pm to 11pm)
• DEPRESSION HELPLINE: 0800 111 757



Are you suffering with a mental illness such as depression or anxiety? Here are some helpful links from BetterHelp that you can check out and find tips on how to live a happier life:

BetterHelp Advice - Anxiety
BetterHelp Advice - Depression
How To Deal with Depression: Tips, Techniques And Finding the Right Treatment

How Do I Find A Therapist Near Me?



Go add A Semi-Definitive List of Worst Nightmares to your Goodreads list HERE


Go buy it on MightyApe with 1 day delivery in New Zealand HERE

Buy it on Book Depository with free shipping world wide HERE

Find it on the Penguin Random House NZ website HERE




Please consider donating a small tip so that I may be able to continue doing what I love! I am currently studying but I would love to be a stay-at-home mum and make a living through my blogging and BookTubing - I will do the best I can to provide top quality content that is interesting and worthy of your subscription ❤




Find more out about me at:










Snapchat: FeathersnFaith

Tuesday, 12 September 2017

Frostblood by Elly Blake: Book Review


The first in a page-turning young adult fantasy series perfect for fans of Victoria Aveyard's Red Queen and Sarah J. Maas's Throne of Glass series.

In a land governed by the cruel Frostblood ruling class, seventeen-year-old Ruby is a Fireblood who has spent most of her life hiding her ability to manipulate heat and light - until the day the soldiers come to raid her village and kill her mother. Ruby vows revenge on the tyrannous Frost King responsible for the massacre of her people.

But Ruby's powers are unpredictable...and so are the feelings she has for Arcus, the scarred, mysterious Frostblood warrior who shares her goal to kill the Frost King, albeit for his own reasons. When Ruby is captured by the Frost King's men, she's taken right into the heart of the enemy. Now she only has one chance to destroy the maniacal ruler who took everything from her - and in doing so, she must unleash the powers she's spent her whole life withholding.

Frostblood is set in world where flame and ice are mortal enemies - but together create a power that could change everything.

SPOILER FREE REVIEW

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The only reason it took me nearly three weeks to finish this book was because I was constantly trying to keep up with my university work while also balancing other responsibilities at home with my family. I definitely found this book to be absolutely refreshing and delightful, although the overall feeling I got when finishing was between a happy but bittersweet ending and slight dissatisfaction. I had originally requested a review copy from Hachette New Zealand because I found the cover to be thoroughly enticing and the synopsis had given me Throne of Glass and Red Queen feels. It definitely lived up to my expectations but failed to soar beyond that point. Really I'm just trying to say that this was just an enjoyable read for those looking for something that will definitely be interesting and a safe read if you're trying to avoid or get out of a reading slump. Preferably also for those that might be new to YA fiction and need something that would introduce them to what we harbour in our little world of fantasy.

"The book says that a west wind will blow when the child of light is born, a powerful Fireblood who will fight the darkness and destroy it forever."

Ruby Otrera was a character that I liked almost instantly because of her fiery (no pun intended) attitude and soft heart (for the things that meant most to her like her mother or learning how to heal using herbal remedies). When the Frost King's soldiers come to take Ruby for being a Fireblood, they kill her mother and lock her away where she is kept isolated and weakened with cold buckets of water, until she is saved by a very powerful Frostblood monk and a mysterious young man, who also harbours a rough attitude, who goes by the name, Arcus.

I felt like this story was very well written considering the characters back stories and motivations, and Ruby definitely gave an all round convincing performance as a young girl with little control over her Fireblood power. Having the monk, Brother Thistle, and Frostblood warrior, Arcus, there to convince Ruby that her power is most likely the only way to defeat the Frost King and melt the Ice Throne, which supposedly holds a dark power that influences the mind of whoever sits on it is a great motivation for her to stay and prove that she can begin to wield her fire with absolute precision. This comes with a lot of training involving peaceful meditation and even a bit of sword fighting, which is a nice twist considering a lot of fantasy heroines who wield magical powers only stick to training with that power. If you consider Celaena Sardothien from Throne of Glass, she was already a trained assassin before she started learning to wield her power, so having a protagonist who has absolutely no knowledge of how to fight is a nice change.

"You don’t know the effect your words have on me, Lady Firebrand. It took years to build up this ice. You will melt it and then I will be broken."

The descriptions are vividly written and the fight scenes are simple but effective, plus I love how the castle of ice and throne with darkness inside was described. I really felt submerged within this novel - it is definitely a beautifully written story, however I would have liked if there were more information regarding the back stories of their people and their Gods and Goddesses. I know that some fantasy treads lightly considering the lore since it can get super detailed and too much to handle without a whole seperate handbook of information, but personally I love the heavy stuff. Maybe in the future something like that would be released and I would just fall in love with this series even more!

"But history could be twisted and warped to suit the person telling it."

I have rated this novel a 4 out of 5 stars because it was an all-round great read, however it seemed to fall flat of a satisfying ending, despite the fact that it was very satisfying with most of the conflict resolved. I love books that end with a cliffhanger but then I always seem to hope for a happy ending, so I can never really win, can I? *Facepalms and keeps sipping coffee*


Thank you Hachette NZ for the review copy!
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