Everything that went down in QUEEN OF SHADOWS – the spoiler-full fangirling review

Queen of Shadows by Sarah J. MaasThis post is full of spoilers for Sarah J. Maas’ fourth book in the Throne of Glass series: Queen of Shadows. If you haven’t read this book or the three before it I recommend not reading this post and coming back later! BUT, if you’ve read Heir of Fire you can read my non-spoiler review of Queen of Shadows HERE

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Queen of Shadows by Sarah J. Maas – book review

Queen of Shadows by Sarah J. MaasQueen of Shadows by Sarah J. Maas

Published: September 1st 2015 by Bloomsbury USA Childrens

Length: 648 pages

Where I got it: LIbrary!

Why I got it: It’s my favourite YA series of all time. Why wouldn’t I get it?

Summary from Goodreads:

The queen has returned.
Everyone Celaena Sardothien loves has been taken from her. But she’s at last returned to the empire—for vengeance, to rescue her once-glorious kingdom, and to confront the shadows of her past…
She has embraced her identity as Aelin Galathynius, Queen of Terrasen. But before she can reclaim her throne, she must fight.
She will fight for her cousin, a warrior prepared to die for her. She will fight for her friend, a young man trapped in an unspeakable prison. And she will fight for her people, enslaved to a brutal king and awaiting their lost queen’s triumphant return.
The fourth volume in the New York Times bestselling series contrinues Celaena’s epic journey and builds to a passionate, agonizing crescendo that might just shatter her world.

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Top Ten Books That Would Be On My Syllabus If Taught YA/Children’s Fantasy 101

top-ten-tuesdays

I need everyone to know that I am taking this list very seriously.  Not only do I have the the ten books/ series that are a MUST if you want to be on my YA and Children’s Fantasy 101 course, I also have what we’ll be learning from each book and I’ve also got some wider reading suggestions too. Yupp. I loved making this week’s list.

Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone by J.K. Rowling 1. Harry Potter series by J.K. Rowling

It’s a classic. Honestly, it should be a given by now. Not only is this series super famous and all round amazing, it basically covers the old fashioned style of magic that is used in book while some of the other books on this list would have more modern styles. I’d totally be the teacher that sets Harry Potter trivia for tests.

The Lightening Thief by Rick Riordan2. Percy Jackson and the Olympians by Rick Riordan (Wider reading: Heroes of Olympus by Rick Riordan)

Now this is a series that gets compared to Harry Potter a lot so by putting it up I can teach my students the never-compare-my-two-favourite-series-and-tell-me-one-is-a-rip-off lesson. Plus, I mean, this series is just so funny AND EDUCATIONAL! Greek mythology tests would also be a thing for this one.

Throne of Glass by Sarah J. Maas3. Throne of Glass series by Sarah J. Maas

Sarah J. Maas is a Queen. Yupp. That’s the first lesson my students would learn along with Harry-Potter-is-life and the one above. From Sarah J. Maas we would learn all about world building and how to rip someone’s heart out with only a few chapters.

Vampire Academy by Richelle Mead4. The Vampire Academy by Richelle Mead (Wider reading: Bloodlines by Richelle Mead)

These books are just so funny. Plus, this series has a lot of politics and scheming so that would be fun to teach. This world is far more developed than my next choice and I think also has a better mythology background.

Twilight by Stephanie Meyer5. The Twilight Saga by Stephanie Meyer

We’re not planning on learning anything from the content of this book. We’re learning how the hell it go so popular and how to answer the every standing question: Team Jacob or Team Edward?

Clockwork Angel by Cassandra Clare6 + 7. The Mortal Instruments and The Infernal Devices by Cassandra Clare

Both of them. There’s no wider reading going on here it is COMPULSORY to read everything Cassandra Clare has every written before you even step into my classroom. From this book, we’ll be learning all about how different species of supernatural begins work together in society and we’re also learning the lesson many forget of NEVER TRUST A FAERIE OMG HOW MANY TIMES DO I NEED TO SAY THIS???

A Court of Thorns and Roses by Sarah J. Maas8. A Court of Thorns and Roses by Sarah J. Maas

This is a bad one to follow that little rant with as this book is bursting with Fae. BUT it’s Sarah J. Maas. Have I mentioned she’s a Queen yet?

A Darker Shade final for Irene9. A Darker Shade of Magic by V. E Schwab

You see, I’ve picked this one especially because it has a lot of travelling between different universes that run parallel to each other which none of the other books have. Plus, V.E. Schwab is amazing and everybody should read this book.

Fallen by Lauren Kate10. Fallen series by Lauren Kate

Here’s the thing: I’d really love to put A Daughter of Smoke and Bone in this place. I really would. But I haven’t read it yet. Yikes. So I went with this, somewhat disliked, series by Lauren Kate which I read some years ago but I’m sure I will be re reading since the movie is coming out next year. There’s a lot of “angel” YA books out there so I guess with this choice I’m covering that area.

And that’s it! Make sure to leave a link in the comments to your list and I’ll check them out!

Red Queen by Victoria Aveyard – book review

Red Queen by Victoria Aveyard

Published: 10th February 2015 by Orion

Length: 383 pages

Where I got it: Library

Why I got it: My friend. More on that below.

Summary from Goodreads:

The poverty stricken Reds are commoners, living under the rule of the Silvers, elite warriors with god-like powers.

To Mare Barrow, a 17-year-old Red girl from The Stilts, it looks like nothing will ever change.

Mare finds herself working in the Silver Palace, at the centre of
those she hates the most. She quickly discovers that, despite her red blood, she possesses a deadly power of her own. One that threatens to destroy Silver control.

But power is a dangerous game. And in this world divided by blood, who will win?

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A Time to Reap by Jonas Lee – book review

A Time to Reap by Jonas Lee

A Time to Reap || Jonas Lee || Fantasy || 250 pages || Createspace || 4.26 on Goodreads

Summary from Goodreads

Pemberton Academy is not just a school, it’s a gathering place for the children of the future that are afflicted with Temporal Displacement and Telepathy; in short, time travelers and mind readers who have been diagnosed with this “disease.” The Academy is not all as it seems after an explosion nearly takes one of its classmates, but not before Carter Gabel rescues her by using an unknown symptom related to his described illness. An unsanctioned group called the Program begins taking notice as the two classmates exhibit stronger abilities when they are together. Carter’s sense of reality begins to unwind as he learns more about his estranged father’s involvement with it all.

Carter will have to overcome the past of his father leaving, the present of an unknown adversary hunting him down and a future that seems to change with each decision he makes. He will have to learn who to trust out of the people in his life if he wants to conquer the looming notion that the government may be hunting him down because of his developing abilities.

*I received a free copy of this book in exchange for my honest opinion.*

Going into this book, I didn’t know what to expect. The synopsis caught my interest and I haven’t read a lot of time travelling books in the past so this read definitely interested me and I wanted to give it a go. As a whole, I pleasantly surprised.

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Bloodlines by Richelle Mean – book review

Bloodlines by Richelle MeadBloodlines || Richelle Mead || Paranormal || 421 pages || Razorbill || 4.24 on Goodreads

Summary from Goodreads:

Blood doesn’t lie…

Sydney is an alchemist, one of a group of humans who dabble in magic and serve to bridge the worlds of human and vampires. They protect vampire secrets – and human lives. When Sydney is torn from her bed in the middle of the night, at first she thinks she’s still being punished for her complicated alliance with dhampir Rose Hathaway. But what unfolds is far worse. Jill Dragomir – the sister of Moroi Queen Lissa Dragomir – is in mortal danger, and the Moroi must send her into hiding. To avoid a civil war, Sydney is called upon to act as Jill’s guardian and protector, posing as her roommate in the last place anyone would think to look for vampire royalty – a human boarding school in Palm Springs, California. But instead of finding safety at Amberwood Prep, Sydney discovers the drama is only just beginning…

Six months after I finished the Vampire Academy series I finally picked up Bloodlines! I don’t really know why I didn’t carry on with this vampire universe immediately but I needed to pick this up now because, firstly, if Richelle Mead can’t pick me up from a reading slump, nobody can and, secondly, because the last book in the series is coming out next month so I think it’s a perfect opportunity to marathon this series. Let’s go straight into the review.

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First impressions: A Darker Shade of Magic by V.E. Schwab

A Darker Shade of Magic || V.E. Schwab || Fantasy || 400 pages || Tor Books

*I received a free preview of this book from the publishers in exchange for my honest review.*

Recently, I got my hands on a preview of A Darker Shade of Magic which is the first in a series by V. E. Schwab who is also the author of the immensely loved Viscous and The Archived series. V.E. Schwab has been on my radar for a long time and so, for me, this is a highly anticipated book and I’m so glad it’s coming out so early in the year (and so near my birthday yay). Here’s a summary from Goodreads:

Kell is one of the last Travelers—rare magicians who choose a parallel universe to visit.

Grey London is dirty, boring, lacks magic, ruled by mad King George. Red London is where life and magic are revered, and the Maresh Dynasty presides over a flourishing empire. White London is ruled by whoever has murdered their way to the throne. People fight to control magic, and the magic fights back, draining the city to its very bones. Once there was Black London – but no one speaks of that now.

Officially, Kell is the Red Traveler, personal ambassador and adopted Prince of Red London, carrying the monthly correspondences between royals of each London. Unofficially, Kell smuggles for those willing to pay for even a glimpse of a world they’ll never see. This dangerous hobby sets him up for accidental treason. Fleeing into Grey London, Kell runs afoul of Delilah Bard, a cut-purse with lofty aspirations. She robs him, saves him from a dangerous enemy, then forces him to another world for her ‘proper adventure’.

But perilous magic is afoot, and treachery lurks at every turn. To save all of the worlds, Kell and Lila will first need to stay alive — trickier than they hoped.

If writing styles were foods, V.E. Schwab would have a chocolate way of writing. When she writes, it’s smooth, gorgeous and it’s difficult to stop reading because you’re so immersed in this world. It’s the kind of writing that I could comfortably read from morning to night and that’s one of the reasons why I absolutely flew through this extract in one sitting and was immediately wanting the whole thing when I was done.

Seriously, who wouldn’t want to read a story set in London? And not just one but multiple Londons! I absolutely adore that city and everything about it so I was really excited to get into the book when I found out about where it is set. The different versions of London that we encounter aren’t really like the touristy version I’m used to but that city definitely has a certain charm surrounding it which is why I fell in love with the setting of this book. Not to mention that the idea of multiple versions is interesting and very original.

From what I can tell, this is going to be a duology, therefore I was really glad to find that the fantasy and the magic is not over-complicated. I wouldn’t say it was basic, because that would downplay how wonderful that element is but it’s simple in the way that we’ve seen both elemental magic before and most can visualize someone travelling in a portal-like way, right? I felt like that’s exactly what needed to happen for a short fantasy series and I wasn’t disappointed.

From the 130 page preview that I’ve read, I’d definitely give it a five-star rating.

Is it 24th February yet?