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Crooked Kingdom by Leigh Bardugo {4 Stars}

Crooked Kingdom by Leigh Bardugo {4 Stars}

Crooked Kingdom by Leigh Bardugo (Six of Crows #2)
Published by Henry Holt and Co. on Sept. 27th, 2016
Genres: Fantasy, YA
Page Length: 536 pages
How I got my copy: Borrowed
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Kaz Brekker and his crew have just pulled off a heist so daring even they didn't think they'd survive. But instead of divvying up a fat reward, they're right back to fighting for their lives. Double-crossed and left crippled by the kidnapping of a valuable team member, the crew is low on resources, allies, and hope. As powerful forces from around the world descend on Ketterdam to root out the secrets of the dangerous drug known as jurda parem, old rivals and new enemies emerge to challenge Kaz's cunning and test the team's fragile loyalties. A war will be waged on the city's dark and twisting streets―a battle for revenge and redemption that will decide the fate of magic in the Grisha world.

4 Stars

All right, so I have a problem. During November of last year I took a break from blogging to win NanoWrimo. But of course I was still reading! I’ve been debating what to do with the notes that I took after finishing each book. I had a plan to write out a full review of them based on the notes, but three months later and I have to admit that that is just not likely to happen. I still want to talk about the books with you though! So here is a barebones, just-my-notes chat about Crooked Kingdom!

Strengths:
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Dreadnought by April Daniels eARC {3.5 Stars}

Dreadnought by April Daniels eARC {3.5 Stars}

Dreadnought by April Daniels (Nemesis #1)
Published by Diversion Books on Jan. 24th, 2017
Genres: Superheroes, YA
Page Length: 276 pages
How I got my copy: NetGalley
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Danny Tozer has a problem: she just inherited the powers of the world's greatest superhero. Until Dreadnought fell out of the sky and died right in front of her, she was trying to keep people from finding out she's transgender. But then her second-hand superpowers transformed her body into what she's always thought it should be. Now there's no hiding that she's a girl.

It should be the happiest time of her life, but between her father's dangerous obsession with curing her girlhood, her best friend suddenly acting like he's entitled to date her, and the classmate who is secretly a masked vigilante, Danny's first weeks living in a body that fits her are more difficult and complicated than she could have imagined.

She doesn't have much time to adjust. Dreadnought's murderer, a cyborg named Utopia, still haunts the streets of New Port City. If Danny can't sort through the confusion of coming out, master her powers, and stop Utopia in time, humanity faces extinction.

3.5 Stars

Note: I received an advanced copy of Dreadnought from the publisher. Some things may have changed in the final version.

Strengths:
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Caraval by Stephanie Garber ARC {4.5 Stars}

Caraval by Stephanie Garber is a luscious story of a girl willing to do anything for her sister, including win a game full of dark magic and dangerously lovely boys. If you are looking for an addictive and beautiful fantasy, look no further. This is the start of a new fantasy series that you don’t want to miss.

Note: I received an advanced copy of Caraval from the publisher. Some things may have changed in the final version.

Caraval by Stephanie Garber ARC {4.5 Stars}

Caraval by Stephanie Garber
Published by Flatiron Books on Jan. 31st, 2017
Genres: Dark Fantasy, YA
Page Length: 401 pages
How I got my copy: Publisher
Amazon - IndieBound - Book Depository - Barnes & Noble - Goodreads
Purchases made support this blog

Before you enter the world of Caraval, you must remember that it’s all a game . . .

Scarlett has never left the tiny island where she and her beloved sister, Tella, live with their ruthless father. Now Scarlett’s father has arranged a marriage for her, and Scarlett thinks her dreams of seeing Caraval, the legendary, once-a-year performance where the audience participates in the show, are over.

Then, Scarlett’s long-dreamt of invitation to Caraval finally arrives. So, Tella enlists a mysterious sailor’s help to whisk Scarlett away to this year’s show. But as soon as the trio arrives, Tella is kidnapped by Caraval’s mastermind organizer, Legend.

Scarlett has been told that everything that happens during Caraval is only an elaborate performance. But she nonetheless soon becomes enmeshed in a game of love, heartbreak, and magic with her sister, with Legend, and with the other players in the game. And whether Caraval is real or not, she must find Tella before the five nights of the game are over, a dangerous domino effect of consequences is set off, and her sister disappears forever.

4.5 Stars

Strengths:
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Windwitch by Susan Dennard ARC {3 Stars}

Windwitch by Susan Dennard ARC {3 Stars}

Windwitch by Susan Dennard (The Witchlands #2)
Published by Tor Teen on Jan. 10th, 2017
Genres: Fantasy, YA
Page Length: 400 pages
How I got my copy: Publisher
Amazon - IndieBound - Book Depository - Barnes & Noble - Goodreads
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Sometimes our enemies are also our only allies…

After an explosion destroys his ship, the world believes Prince Merik, Windwitch, is dead. Scarred yet alive, Merik is determined to prove his sister’s treachery. Upon reaching the royal capital, crowded with refugees, he haunts the streets, fighting for the weak—which leads to whispers of a disfigured demigod, the Fury, who brings justice to the oppressed.

When the Bloodwitch Aeduan discovers a bounty on Iseult, he makes sure to be the first to find her—yet in a surprise twist, Iseult offers him a deal. She will return money stolen from him, if he locates Safi. Now they must work together to cross the Witchlands, while constantly wondering, who will betray whom first?

After a surprise attack and shipwreck, Safi and the Empress of Marstok barely escape with their lives. Alone in a land of pirates, every moment balances on a knife’s edge—especially when the pirates’ next move could unleash war upon the Witchlands.

3 Stars

Note: I received an advanced copy of Windwitch from the publisher. Some things may have changed in the final version.

Strengths:
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The Cursed Queen by Sarah Fine ARC {4 Stars}

The Cursed Queen by Sarah Fine ARC {4 Stars}

The Cursed Queen by Sarah Fine (The Impostor Queen #2)
Published by Margaret K. McElderry Books on 432
Genres: Fantasy, YA
How I got my copy: Publisher
Amazon - IndieBound - Book Depository - Barnes & Noble - Goodreads
Purchases made support this blog

Ansa has always been a fighter.

As a child, she fought the invaders who murdered her parents and snatched her as a raid prize. She fought for her place next to Thyra, the daughter of the Krigere Chieftain. She fought for her status as a warrior in her tribe: blood and victory are her way of life. But the day her Krigere cross the great lake and threaten the witch queen of the Kupari, everything changes.

Cursed by the queen with fire and ice, Ansa is forced to fight against an invisible enemy—the dark magic that has embedded itself deep in her bones. The more she seeks to hide it, the more dangerous it becomes. And with the Krigere numbers decimated and the tribe under threat from the traitorous brother of the dead Chieftain, Ansa is torn between her loyalty to the Krigere, her love for Thyra, and her own survival instincts.

With her world in chaos and each side wanting to claim her for their own, only one thing is certain: unless Ansa can control the terrible magic inside her, everything she’s fought for will be destroyed.

4 Stars

Note: I received an advanced copy of The Cursed Queen from the publisher. Some things may have changed in the final version.

Strengths:
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The Dark Days Club by Alison Goodman Audiobook {4 Stars}

The Dark Days Club by Alison Goodman Audiobook {4 Stars}

The Dark Days Club by Alison Goodman
Narrated by Fiona Hardingham
(Lady Helen #1)
Published by Brilliance Audio, Viking Penguin on Jan. 26th, 2016
Genres: Historical Fantasy
Page Length: 482 pages
Audio Length: 14 hrs and 59 mins
How I got my copy: Publisher
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New York Times bestseller Alison Goodman’s eagerly awaited new project: a Regency adventure starring a stylish and intrepid demon-hunter!

London, April 1812. On the eve of eighteen-year-old Lady Helen Wrexhall’s presentation to the queen, one of her family’s housemaids disappears-and Helen is drawn into the shadows of Regency London. There, she meets Lord Carlston, one of the few who can stop the perpetrators: a cabal of demons infiltrating every level of society. Dare she ask for his help, when his reputation is almost as black as his lingering eyes? And will her intelligence and headstrong curiosity wind up leading them into a death trap?

4 Stars

Note: I received an advanced copy of The Dark Days Club from the publisher. Some things may have changed in the final version.

Strengths:
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Seriously Shifted by Tina Connolly {4 Stars}

Seriously Shifted by Tina Connolly {4 Stars}

Seriously Shifted by Tina Connolly (Seriously Wicked #2)
Published by Tor Teen on Nov. 1st, 2016
Genres: Contemporary Fantasy, YA
Page Length: 240 pages
How I got my copy: Publisher
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Teenage witch Cam isn’t crazy about the idea of learning magic. She’d rather be no witch than a bad one. But when a trio of her mother’s wicked witch friends decide to wreak havoc in her high school, Cam has no choice but to try to stop them.

Esmerelda is the mean girl of the witches. Valda likes to drop anvils on people’s heads. And Malkin—well, Malkin is just plain terrifying. Their idea of fun is a little game—they each pick a student from Cam’s high school and compete to see who can make their teen the most miserable. But Cam suspects one of the witches may have an ulterior motive…which means someone at school could be in worse danger yet.

Now Cam’s learning invisibility spells, dodging exploding cars, and pondering the ethics of love potions. All while trying to keep her grades up and go on a first date with her crush. If the witches don’t get him first, that is.

Can’t a good witch ever catch a break?

4 Stars

Note: I received an advanced copy of Seriously Shifted from the publisher. Some things may have changed in the final version.

Strengths:
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The Hammer of Thor by Rick Riordan {4.5 Stars}

Here we go again …. Seems like Magnus Chase’s afterlife is going to be spent chasing (yes, I went there) down magical weapons that the Norse gods have somehow misplaced.  First, it was his father’s sword; now it is Thor’s great hammer, which, in this universe, can be picked up by the (very) unworthy.   Fortunately, Magnus has friends throughout the Nine Worlds who can help him on this quest, and we are treated yet again to Samira, Heath, Blitz, and new friends as the intrepid band of heroes do their best to twart Loki’s attempts to bring on Ragnarok.

The Hammer of Thor by Rick Riordan  {4.5 Stars}

The Hammer of Thor by Rick Riordan (Magnus Chase and the Gods of Asgard)
Published by Disney Hyperion on October 4, 2016
Genres: Fantasy, YA
Page Length: 480 pages
How I got my copy: Purchased
Goodreads
Purchases made support this blog

Thor's hammer is missing again. The thunder god has a disturbing habit of misplacing his weapon--the mightiest force in the Nine Worlds. But this time the hammer isn't just lost, it has fallen into enemy hands. If Magnus Chase and his friends can't retrieve the hammer quickly, the mortal worlds will be defenseless against an onslaught of giants. Ragnarok will begin. The Nine Worlds will burn. Unfortunately, the only person who can broker a deal for the hammer's return is the gods' worst enemy, Loki--and the price he wants is very high.

4.5 Stars

Strengths:
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Merrow by Ananda Braxton-Smith eARC {4.5 Stars}

Merrow by Ananda Braxton-Smith is a quiet and beautiful tale of a girl trying to understand her mother’s disappearance and the rumors that have been circulating about her fantastical parentage. This book combines a rich historical setting of Ireland as Christianity is just starting to come into the land and the question of whether the Merrow (Irish mermaid/selkies) are real or not. If you’re looking for a book that sneaks up on you before sweeping you away to a mystical land, this is the one.

Note: I received an advanced copy of Merrow from the publisher. Some things may have changed in the final version.

Merrow by Ananda Braxton-Smith eARC {4.5 Stars}

Merrow by Ananda Braxton-Smith (Secrets of Carrick #1)
Published by Candlewick Press on Nov. 8th, 2016
Genres: Historical Fantasy, YA
Page Length: 240 pages
How I got my copy: NetGalley, Publisher
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Purchases made support this blog

In this breathless and beautifully crafted tale, twelve-year-old Neen Marrey must separate town gossip from town lore to learn the truth about her mother—and herself.

The people of Carrick Island have been whispering behind Neen’s back ever since her father drowned and her mother disappeared. The townspeople say her mother was a merrow and has returned to the ocean. Neen, caught in her hazy new in-between self—not a child, but not quite grown up—can’t help but wonder if the villagers are right. But if her mother was a merrow, then what does that make Neen?

4.5 Stars

Strengths:
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The Midnight Star by Marie Lu Audiobook {4 Stars}

The Midnight Star by Marie Lu is the concluding book of the Young Elites trilogy. Adelina must confront the growing darkness in her and decide whether her sister’s life is worth rejoining with her friends-turned-enemies to save the world. If you’ve been wondering what these Young Elite powers really are, this is the book for you!

Note: I received an advanced copy of The Midnight Star from the publisher. Some things may have changed in the final version.

The Midnight Star by Marie Lu Audiobook {4 Stars}

The Midnight Star by Marie Lu
Narrated by Carla Corvo, Lannon Killea
(The Young Elites #3)
Published by GP Putnam's Sons Books for Young Readers on Oct. 11th, 2016
Genres: Dark Fantasy, YA
Page Length: 316 pages
Audio Length: 9 hrs and 7 mins
How I got my copy: Publisher
Amazon - IndieBound - Book Depository - Barnes & Noble - Goodreads
Purchases made support this blog

The thrilling finale to the New York Times bestselling Young Elites series from “hit factory” Marie Lu.

There was once a time when darkness shrouded the world, and the darkness had a queen.

Adelina Amouteru is done suffering. She’s turned her back on those who have betrayed her and achieved the ultimate revenge: victory. Her reign as the White Wolf has been a triumphant one, but with each conquest her cruelty only grows. The darkness within her has begun to spiral out of control, threatening to destroy all that she’s achieved.

Adelina’s forced to revisit old wounds when a new danger appears, putting not only Adelina at risk, but every Elite and the very world they live in. In order to save herself and preserve her empire, Adelina and her Roses must join the Daggers on a perilous quest—though this uneasy alliance may prove to be the real danger.

4 Stars

Strengths:
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