Novel Review – ‘Children of Blood and Bone’ by Tomi Adeyemi

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Children of Blood and Bone by Tomi Adeyemi

Page Number



Fantasy, Magic, and Young Adult


They killed my mother.

They took our magic.

They tried to bury us.

Now we rise.

Zélie Adebola remembers when the soil of Orïsha hummed with magic. Burners ignited flames. Tiders beckoned waves, and Zélie’s Reaper mother summoned forth souls.

But everything changed once magic disappeared. Under the orders of a ruthless king, the maji were targeted and killed, leaving Zélie without a mother and her people without hope.

Now Zélie has one chance to bring back magic and strike against the monarchy. With the help of a rogue princess, Zélie must outwit and outrun the crown prince, who is hell-bent on eradicating magic for good.

Danger lurks in Orïsha, where snow leopanaires prowl and vengeful spirits wait in the waters. Yet the greatest threat may be Zélie herself as she struggles to control her powers — and her growing feelings for an enemy.

Pre-Reading Notes

Please let her fall in love with the princess. That’s literally all I need to like this novel. Please.

Other than that, the reviews I see for this novel are so varied. I see some that rave about it but it also seems like I see the exact same amount of people saying it’s not worth the hype. So I’m intrigued.

(Also, the author listens to BTS and I’ve been listening to them since I was like 12 so she’s automatically amazing and that means I really want to like this book)

So, lets get into this.

Thoughts While Reading

    “Go Zélie”
    “Oh no”
    “OH NO”
    “She saved her life go OFF”
    “This sounds like El Dorado”
    “Something bad is going to happen”
    “So uhm”
    “Something bad happened”
    “Why is this happening”
    “So uhhh hate him”
    “Thanks for killing him @ Amari”
    “He sounds kinda hot love that”
    “I hope this works”

    “Oh my goodness”

Post-Reading Notes

So she didn’t fall in love with the princess.

But this novel was still really amazing and had a particularly fantastic message. So let’s get into it.

Favorite Quote from the Novel

“I won’t let your ignorance silence my pain.”

– Zélie Adebola

My Thoughts



So uhhh is it just me or is Tzain kind of an ass to Zélie at times? He, one more than one occasion, has told Zélie that she can’t do anything right and basically that she should stop trying. Which maybe like a defense mechanism but it’s still a little messed up. But even beyond that, he almost left her because she decided to trust Inan. Why would you leave her, honestly, what’s the logic in that? Even if he is going to betray her, wouldn’t you rather be with her when you can do something about it??? 

Other than these times, I thought his character’s personality was okay. His romance with Amari was cute, as well. (Her and Zélie would’ve been better but I’ll take it)

Zélie and Inan 🙄


Honestly, I didn’t have a problem with the flow of their relationship because it is a common thing for people to become connected by the share of a traumatic situation. Beyond Amari and Tzain getting kidnapped, Inan also saw and felt her pain that was inflicted by his father. So I understand why that situation made them get close. Even still, though, their relationship was so forced and basically built on lies and false hopes. They were in love within a few days which is just unrealistic for the vast majority of people. 

Also, it angered me beyond believe when Inan’s chapters were him trying to rationalize his father’s actions or how he should still destroy magic because it’ll save Zélie. No, you don’t have the right to make that choice. No one except Zélie does.  



No one can ever deny that our world was never like this. And no one can deny that it’s still bad now. Racism exists. Sexism exists. Discrimination exists. Homophobia exists. There are so many social problems this world has to face but I couldn’t say it better than Tomi, or Zélie.

We are all children of blood and bone.

We are all human. We all bleed. We all feel. So why the hell do some people not have the right to? Why are unarmed black humans getting killed in the streets? Why do humans have to hide how they feel, who they are in their soul, due to the possibility of getting beaten and killed? Why is this fear still here?

This novel brings so much awareness. It reminds people that we have come far, but there is such a great distance to go. It reminds us that change has come, but more change is still due.

Thank you, Tomi Adeyemi. For reminding everyone who reads this novel that we are all children of blood and bone. And we all deserve and should have the right to prosper and grow. But above all else, that we have the right to live as ourselves — the people we were born and destined to be.

Favorite Character

Princess Amani

Though Zélie is a close second, Amani is my favorite character. She goes from this shy and timid girl to The Lionaire — a woman who will fight the good fight and who is afraid, but does what needs to be done anyways, knowing that it’s right. She always wanted to do the right thing and try to make people see the right path but when they wouldn’t, she learned to step up and do what needed to be done. She definitely had the most growth and I found myself looking forward to her chapters. 

Final Overall Review and Rating


My biggest complaint for this novel is the relationship between Zélie and Inan. Other than that, this novel was spectacular, in message and in execution.  

Would/Will I Continue the Series?

Oh definitely. The next novel, Children of Virtue and Vengeance, is set to release sometime in 2019. Honestly, my only hope for the next novel is that Zélie isn’t too horribly hung up on Inan for the whole thing and that she doesn’t become blinded by the need for revenge. 

Who Should Read This Novel

Those who need the reminder that they have a voice. And that no matter what anyone says, that voice is worth something. And that, above all else, they are worth fighting for. 

Question Corner

  • If you could be in one of the magic clans, which one would you be in?
  • If you’ve read this novel, who was your favorite character? Why?

Life in Books Tag

So, if you’ve seen my last post, you know I’m currently stuck inside because Hurricane Florence is GOING OFF.

Needless to say, I’m really bored. And I’ve been wanting to do a tag for a while but no one tags me because I don’t know how to socialize because anxiety.

So, I went though some blogs that I enjoy and decided to do this one from Boston Book Reader’s blog. IMG_4805.JPG

1.) Find a book for each of your initials:

2.) Count your age along your bookshelf — what book is it?

3.) A book set in your city/country:

4.) A book that represents a destination you’d love to travel to:

  • Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll (never said it had to be a real place :))

5.) A book that’s your favorite color

6.) Which book do you have the fondest memories of?

  • It’s a series as a whole and it’s The White Rabbit Chronicles by Gena Showalter

7.) Which book did you have the most difficulty reading?

8.) Which book in your TBR pile will give you the biggest accomplishment when you finish it?

  • The Tale of Genji by Murasaki Shikibu (translated by Dennis Washburn), a 1300 page Japanese classic. When I finish this book, I will have reached my final form as a human being


A Random Recommendation – ‘Saints and Misfits’ by S. K. Ali

So, here comes the third random recommendation. And there’s a mediocre story with this one so buckle up. 

If you know anything about current natural disasters, you know there is currently a hurricane, named Florence, wrecking havoc on the U.S.’s East Coast. Guess where I am.

Not on the East Coast! But I’m close to it. Close enough that they cancelled my school on Friday and I’m sitting in my office watching the rain and wind this hurricane is bringing. This led to me getting bored. So here we are, with another random recommendation. 

That’s my story. 

I actually have another recommendation planned so if that happens, I’ll link it here.

But enough of my rambling — let’s get into this rainy day recommendation.


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If you didn’t know already, I’ve actually reviewed this novel before. I want to say it was one of my first five (I think four if we’re getting specific) reviews. So, it made its way to this blog before recommendations were a thing here. And I just never got around to posting it. Until now!

I don’t even know where to start with the beauty that is this novel. So, I’ll start with another story and go into some points and hope it does this book justice. Okay? Great.

I love quotes. I’m literally planning on making a master list on here of all of my favorite quotes from the novels I’ve reviewed on here. How I used to keep track of my quotes is by putting the skinny little sticky notes on the page and I was in my library, looking at my novels when I saw a lone sticky note coming out of this novel. Which was strange because I would take the notes out when I was done. But then it came to me and I remembered exactly why I left that sticky note in there. 


The page that was bookmarked was when Janna found the courage to tell her family that she was raped. It’s at the very end of the book and I read from that bookmark to the end every time I open it. And every time, I get goosebumps. And you want to know why? Because throughout the novel, Janna consistently talks about her low opinion of herself and uses that as a reason why she hasn’t told her family, or hasn’t done something an average person would. But then Janna finds it within herself to share quite possibly the worst thing that has happened/will ever happen to her with her family. And she ends the book with this quote, 

“I can’t imagine what it means to love everyone. But I’m just going to start right here, by loving a bit more of myself. And maybe then the rest will follow.”

– Janna Yusuf

This quote still effects me and I read this novel well over a year ago. I think it does this because of how it can reach different people. We all go through things that are awful and horrendous and our own “personal tragedies” and they almost always fuck us up in some way. But this quote helps me remember that no matter what has happened or will happen, I have myself. I always will. So why should I try to fight the person who has had my back my whole life? And maybe then, the day I learn to completely love myself, will I be able to love and forgive everyone else. And I hope to God that it does the same for those who read it. 

So, that’s my story. Now for the points I talked about. The majority of the characters are Muslim, which I really enjoy. The writing is so utterly powerful at the perfect times, but projects Janna’s emotions really well. And, the love interest and hint at a blossoming relationship is so perfect under the circumstances of Janna’s life. 

I will always and forever cry over this novel (not actually cry but like a joy-cry kinda thing?) and I hope you do the same. But again, a joy-cry. I think? I HOPE YOU LOVE IT A LOT IS WHAT I’M TRYING TO SAY okay bye. 

Saints and Misfits Review


Novel Review – ‘Tempests and Slaughter’ by Tamora Pierce


Tempests and Slaughter by Tamora Pierce

Page Number 



Fantasy and Young Adult



Is a lightning rod for peril.

And a storm is brewing.

Arram Draper is on the path to becoming one of the realm’s most powerful mages. The youngest student in his class at the Imperial University of Carthak, he has a Gift with unlimited potential for greatness — and for attracting trouble. At his side are his two best friends: Varice, a clever girl with an often-overlooked talent, and Ozorne, the “left-over prince” with secret ambitions. Together, these three friends forge a bond that will one day shape kingdoms. 

As Arram’s education continues, he discovers a disturbing dark side of the Carthaki Empire — one that not even his powerful masters at the university can protect him from. And as Ozorne gets closer to the throne and Varice gets closer to Arram’s heart, Arram realized that one day soon he will have to decide where his loyalties truly lie. 

Bestselling and award-winning author TAMORA PIERCE crafts a richly realized world as only she can. Here, an intricately developed mage school sets the stage for friendship and fate to meet. And a kingdom’s future rests on the shoulders of a talented young man with a knack for making enemies. 

Pre-Reading Notes

Is it just me, or does this plot sound slightly familiar to The Novice? Like the idea of a mage in a school who is the only thing standing between his kingdom being utterly destroyed? But there are a fair amount of differences, I just thought that thought was similar. 


I’m really excited for this novel (I’m realizing I say that every time but it’s fine)! I’m ready to get into another magic wielding novel, I’ve always had a soft spot for them. 

Thoughts While Reading

    “I mean at least he didn’t die”    
    “This took a turn”
    “He seems nice”
    “Oh I don’t think he meant to do that”
    “That lady seems rude”
    “Oh yeah she is”
    “He made friends I’m so proud”
    “Oh. . .he’s a god. . .but he’s crocodile. . .okay”
    “I would die for Preet”
    “That doesn’t sound fun”
    “Oh my god he’s back I love him”
    “He has to go WHERE”
    “Oh he really just saved his life”

    “This is literally the calm before the storm isn’t it? Great, can’t wait for the storm”

Post-Reading Notes

The storm comment is funny because I’m literally about to be hit with a storm. Thanks @ Hurricane Florence.

Anyways, I’m gonna be real with you all — I had absolutely no idea Arram, excuse me Numair, was a character in some of Pierce’s previous novels. This is the first novel of Pierce’s that I’ve ever read so put down your pitchforks. I was wondering where the name Numair came from in the series title and fell down this hole. So, that means this review will be just based off of my thoughts of this novel in particular. 

(Also I have no idea who the fluff this kid grows to be so this should be fun {read painful})

Favorite Quote from the Novel

“They should know even the smallest viper is a killer.”

– Master Yadeen 

My Thoughts

Interesting *Gasp* Politics

I KNOW! I know. This was unexpected because HI my name’s Ash and I really dislike books that are heavily influenced by politics. But here the fluff I sit, writing this because Pierce actually made the talk of politics interesting. This book isn’t politic-talk heavy by any means, but it’s still there. Arram is best friends with a prince, so it’s understandable. 


The relationships is this were so cute. The growth of Arram, Ozorne, and Varice’s friendship was so cute in the base of it, but still had a lot of depth that could lead to potential conflicts later in the game. Also, the pining between Arram and Varice was so soft, thought I don’t know what happened between Arram and that one girl I can’t remember the name of because I’m awful and running on a lack of sleep. And finally, another relationship that stands out to me is the one between Yadeen and his husband. I love the representation, but I also love that it was in there so casually and there was no conflict with it. But primarily, I love it because their SO CUTE TOGETHER OOF. 

I’m Intrigued

Pierce did such a good job at setting this novel up for another book. There wasn’t anything huge that happened but it left this space open that something good happen. Tensions are beginning to get high and Arram is beginning to uncover pieces of his world and its politics that should’ve remained hidden from him. 

Final Overall Review and Rating


I’m actually kind of surprised I liked this novel as much as I did. There was little to no extreme action, which I heavily gravitate towards with these types of novels so this was refreshing. But even with a lack of action, this novel is still really interesting and leads for a lot of potential in the next three novels. 

Would/Will I Continue the Series?

Yes. Definitely. If nothing else, I would still read this novel for Preet (he’s so cute don’t shame me). But I’m really excited for the next novel! The next novel is called The Exile’s Gift and is set to release sometime in 2019. 

Who Should Read This Novel 

Those who love magic and watching characters grow throughout a few years’ time. And those who feel like they are ahead of their time. 

Question Corner

  • If you could go into one field of magic (i.e. healing, war, crafting, etc.) what would it be?
  • Or, what element of magic would you focus on?

Novel Review – ‘Ink’ by Alice Broadway


Ink by Alice Broadway

Page Number 



Fiction, Fantasy, and Science Fiction – Dystopia


There are no secrets in Saintstone.

From the moment you’re born, every achievement, every failing, and every significant moment are all immortalized on your skin. There are honorable marks that let people know you’re trustworthy. And shameful tattoos that announce you as a traitor. 

After her father dies, Leora finds solace in the fact that his skin tells a wonderful story. That is, until she glimpses a mark on the back of his neck . . . the symbol of the worst crime a person can commit in Saintstone. Leora knows it has to be a mistake, but before she can do anything about it, the horrifying secret gets out, jeopardizing her father’s legacy . . . and Leora’s life.

In her startlingly prescient debut, Alice Broadway shines a light on the dangerous lengths we go to make our world feel orderly — even when the truth refuses to stay within the lines. This rich, lyrical fantasy with echoes of Orwell is unlike anything you’ve ever read, a tale guaranteed to get under your skin . . . 

Pre-Reading Notes

Fun Fact about Ash (that’s me if you’re new here)!

I love tattoos. So I knew I had to read this book. And the idea that a man who seems so amazing to his peers committed the worst crime in a given community is really interesting. And what is the worst crime in Saintstone???? I have questions. 

(Also, the cover is really pretty so I wanted to read it even more don’t shame me)

Thoughts While Reading

    “Wow that’s pretty metal”
    “How did this happen???”
    “How did literally no one notice?”
    “There’s no way that should’ve been this easy”

    “I was rightttt”

Post-Reading Notes

I’m conflicted. So let’s talk about it. 

Favorite Quote from the Novel

“We’re all a bit bad, Leora. We all have things in our lives that bring us shame and regret. Things that have hurt our souls or hurt the people we love. But we’re all a bit good too. I reckon we’re mostly good, actually. And life is about trying to learn the balance, plot our place on the continuum. We’re a little but good, a little bit bad — but that’s not gray. It’s this. We’re not just made up of good and bad — we’re everything else too.”

– Obel

My Thoughts

The Alternate Universe

I really love this concept. The idea that our past deeds are immortalized on our skin is such an interesting idea and there are so many possible things that could be done with it. 


Now, the execution of this really cool concept wasn’t the best to me. It seemed cut off in some places. This novel is actually pretty short and I honestly think it could’ve benefited from being a bit longer to help build the character relationships and conflicts more. If I’m being real with you guys, I didn’t like a lot of these characters because they seemed pretty one dimensional, but I think that could’ve been fixed if it were longer. There were also some plot lines that completely dropped off and then picked back up with an answer and a very weird path to that answer. There were a few that really got to me but there was one that I’m still simmering about. That’s foreshadowing, btw.

But on the plus side, I did enjoy the “bedtime stories” inside the novel that tell the past of Saintstone. 


Oscar ???

Who’s ready to talk about the plot line that angered me the most? Great. 

So a run down of Oscar — he saves Leora in the museum from possible getting arrested, plays her to get what he wants, and gets mad when she makes a decision based off of what little information she has. But apparently, Leora ends the book being in love with him. After very few interactions. And I’m JUST CONFUSED. Like they met for coffee a few times to literally talk about their fathers’ skin book and broke into an official office to steal something. So, uhm. Correct me if I’m wrong, but that’s not really falling in love material. 

Or have I been doing it wrong this whole time?


Final Overall Review and Rating


I really wanted to like this book guys. But it wasn’t my favorite. Whoops. 

Would/Will I Continue the Series?

Honestly? If the opportunity arrises, probably. I’m intrigued because Leora kinda did a badass thing at the end and I wonder if she’ll regret it. The next novel is called Spark!

Who Should Read This Novel 

Those who want a quick read. And those who enjoy dystopian type novels. 

Question Corner 

  • Would you want to live in this type of society or one like it? Where your past accomplishments and your past mistakes are forever immortalized on your skin and you are subject to judgment because of them? 
  • What would you change? 

Novel Review – ‘Girl in Pieces’ by Kathleen Glasgow

Before we begin, this novel does talk about triggering topics and so will this review, so if you aren’t comfortable with that, I would skip this review. 

Also, if you are going through something, please talk to someone. It may not seem like it helps, but I promise you it does. It doesn’t have to be someone you know, or someone you’re ever going to see again. There are a number of resources to contact. But please, get help. Because you deserve to be in this world just as much as any other decent human being.

I’ll be rooting for you. 

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Girl in Pieces by Kathleen Glasgow

Page Number 



Young Adult, Contemporary, Mental Health, and Fiction

You can spot the girls     

who have it easy.

And then there is me. 

Charlotte Davis is in pieces. At seventeen she’s already lost more than most people do in a lifetime. But she’s learned how to forget. The broken glass washes away the sorrow until there is nothing but calm. You don’t have to think about your father and the river. Your best friend, who is gone forever. Or your mother, who has nothing left to give you. 

Every new scar hardens Charlie’s heart just a little more, yet it still hurts so much. It hurts enough to not care anymore, which is sometimes what has to happen before you can find your way back from the edge. 

Pre-Reading Notes

I’m really excited about this book. I think if this novel portrays the expected content at least somewhat accurately, this novel has the potential to help a lot of people. And that would be really powerful and helpful to a copious amount of people. So, let’s do this. 

Thoughts While Reading

    “Well this is sad and I’m one page in”    
    “I have chills”
    “Hey I’m on yearbook staff too”
    “Oh wow”
    “Oh my god”
    “I may just cry because of this book”

    “Oh my god I’m crying because of this book”

Post-Reading Notes

I can’t think of a time that I’ve cried while reading a book. Until now. The second to last page, the tears started flowing and when I finished the novel and the author’s note, I set the book down and cried. Now, let me tell you why.

Favorite Quote from the Novel

“Everyone has that moment, I think, the moment when something so . . . momentous happens that it rips your very being into small pieces. And it takes such a very long time, not to fit them back together, but to assemble them in a new way, not necessarily a better way. More, a way you can live with until you know for certain that this piece should go there, and that one there.”

– Grandpa Felix

My Thoughts

This is So Important

I think everyone knows someone who has self harmed, whether they are aware of it or not. It’s such a widespread situation and no two cases are the same. I cried while reading this novel because someone finally understood. It wasn’t some guess into the life of someone who has self harmed. No, instead, it was an in depth look into the emotions, the pain, the healing, and so much more that comes with self harming. How not every distraction works and how sometimes you can’t help but hide your scars. This novel gives those who self harm representation and validation. 

But even those who have never self harmed should read this book. Because it’s raw and it’s eye-opening and the emotions Charlie feels aren’t limited to just her self harm, but to her issues with her mother, her homelessness, and so much more. Everyone can find something they relate to in this novel. Beyond that, though, is that this novel can help educate others on what it’s like and give them an idea as to how to help. 

Trigger Warning

This novel isn’t especially graphic but it has its moments. To read this novel, you have to know your mental limits and if you get triggered, put the book down and go do something else, and then come back. Everyone’s emotions and triggers are different and you can’t ignore them. Just know that when you read this book, it’s going to hurt. But it’s the kind of pain that has the power to open up your eyes to something you may be unfamiliar with, if you just take the time to look. 

Final Overall Review and Rating


Everyone has a story, and just like over two million teenage girls, Charlie’s is on her skin. This novel shows the journey of Charlie trying to overcome her self harm and her trauma to finally realize that the scars on her skin don’t make her any less. And I don’t know about you but that’s a lesson a lot of us may need. 

Would/Will I Continue the Series?

This novel is a stand-alone but I wouldn’t mind a short story about Charlie. I would like to know how New York is treating her, if she met with Ellis, and so much more. 

Who Should Read This Novel 

Everyone. I don’t care who you are or what you’ve been through — read this book. Be mindful that it’s going to hurt, but it will be worth it. I promise. 

August 2018 Recommendation – ‘The Bone Witch Series’ by Run Chupeco

Let’s forget that this recommendation is two days late. I’m sorry whoops. Anyways, let’s get into this. 

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The Bone Witch Series by Rin Chupeco

I already have a Random Recommendation on The Bone Witch but for this month, we’re doing the whole series. Because I can. Deal with it.

I’m not going to go too in depth with The Bone Witch because of the prior recommendation so this will mainly be focused on The Heart Forger and/or the entire series. 

The Heart Forger was such a good sequel to The Bone Witch. Honestly, I enjoyed it more, though I love them both. But in The Heart Forger the reader got to see the change begin in Tea in real time while discovering more and more of what is still to come. 

I will never stop raving about the format of this series. It’s the perfect way to capture a reader because they are learning with Tea what’s happened but they are learning through the chronicler what Tea does in response to certain actions that we don’t know about yet. It’s just so entrancing. 

This series really changed something in me, and I hope it does the same to you.

I’m sorry if this recommendation was a little boring! A lot of what I wanted to say about this series, I’ve already said in the Random Recommendation for The Bone Witch (which will be linked in both mentions of it and below ;)) so I really recommend reading that!

The Bone Witch Review

The Heart Forger Review

The Bone Witch Recommendation

Novel Review – ‘Stars of Fortune’ by Nora Roberts

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Stars of Fortune by Nora Roberts

Page Number 



Fiction, Romance, and Fantasy – Magic


To celebrate the rise of their new queen, three goddesses of the moon created three stars: one of fire, one of ice, one of water. But then they fell from the sky, putting the fate of all worlds in danger. And now three women and three men join forces to pick up the pieces. . . 

Sasha Riggs is a reclusive artist, haunted by dreams and nightmares that she turns into extraordinary paintings. Her visions lead her to the Greek island of Corfu, where five others have been lured to seek the fire star. Sasha recognizes them, because she was drawn them: a magician, an archaeologist, a wanderer, a fighter, a loner. All on a quest. All with secrets. 

Sasha is the one who holds them together – the seer. And in the magician, Bran Killian, she sees a man of immense power and compassion. As Sasha struggles with her rare ability, Bran is there to support her, challenge her, and believe in her. 

But Sasha and Bran are just two of the six. And they all must work together as a team to find the fire star in a cradle of land beneath the sea. Over their every attempt at trust, unity, and love, a dark threat looms. And it seeks to corrupt everything that stands in its way of possessing the stars. . . 

Pre-Reading Notes

“. . .in a cradle of land beneath the sea.” ATLANTIS. CALLING IT RIGHT NOW. 

Okay, I’ll stop. But I’m excited to finally read this novel! My grandmother has actually wanted me to read this novel for so long so she’ll be proud.

Thoughts While Reading

    “He sound a bit fine”
    “I retract my previous statement :(“
    “I’m calling it now – she’s a mermaid”
    “‘Adorable ass kicker’ That’s so cute awww”
    “I really thought he was going to ride an actual dragon I’m disappointed now”
    “He can fly????”
    “The dog fought omg I love dogs”

    “She’s a werewolf???”

Post-Reading Notes

Okay so it wasn’t Atlantis. But, I just feel happy. And now, I’ll tell you why. But first, a very ominous quote.

Favorite Quote from the Novel

“She destroys what loves because she does not. And when she comes, death marches with her.”

– Sasha Riggs

My Thoughts

The Perfect Summer Read

This novel is perfect for a light summer read. It passes by quickly and the writing is easy to read and has an overlaying positive feel to it. The identities of the characters are primarily straightforward but each of them have their own secrets that aid in keeping the plot interesting. And the idea behind the conflict itself is fascinating — a tale of goddess, both good and evil, from eons ago. It’s nothing too in depth and haunting or too complex and straining — perfect for the summer when you just want an easy read.

Only Slightly Cringe-y Sex Scenes

This novel does deal highly in romance, as quite a few of Nora Roberts’ books do. The sex scenes aren’t awful but they definitely make me laugh in disbelief sometimes. But that’s a personal thing I guess. 

Final Overall Review and Rating


I’m glad I read this novel during the summer because I feel like I wouldn’t like it as much if I had waited until another season. Sorry there isn’t a lot of different points! This novel is one for me that can be summed up as easy and interesting. 

Would/Will I Continue the Series?

Oh yeah. My grandmother actually has the rest of the books so when I see her next, I’ll make sure to get them. The next novel in this series is called Bay of Sighs. 

Who Should Read This Novel 

I think any book nerd who is at least okay with romance should read this during the summer. It’s just peaceful. Other than that, romance fanatics. 

Novel Review – ‘The Death and Life of Zebulon Finch, Volume Two: Empire Decayed’ by Daniel Kraus

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The Death and Life of Zebulon Finch, Volume Two: Empire Decayed by Daniel Kraus

Page Number 



Historical Fiction, Fantasy, and Young Adult


Half a century has passed since Zebulon Finch was gunned down and then inexplicably resurrected to suffer a second life. During that time, he has faced more violence, lust, and heartbreak than any other seventeen-year-old in history. But nothing can prepare him for what is coming next. 

Enthralling and gut-wrenching, The Death and Life of Zebulon Finch, Volume Two: Empire Decayed is the thrilling conclusion to the epic saga of one young man’s journey down the long road of redemption.

Pre-Reading Notes

This has virtually nothing to do with the plot of this novel but I really want you all to know that MY WRISTS HURT FROM WRITING THIS TITLE SO MUCH OH MY LORD. 

Now, to get to business, I’m pretty excited to read more about Zebulon Finch and his really problematic lifestyle, well death-style?? I don’t know; he’s dead but he’s still kicking. Let’s see what damage he brings to those around him now. 

Thoughts While Reading

    “‘Adolf Hitler was a handsome devil’ ARE YOU SURE, ZEBULON??? ARE YOU REALLY SURE?”
    “His death is truly a mess”
    “Yeah no shit concentration camps aren’t a good thing, Zebulon”
    “This is so sad Alexa play despacito”
    “This man really shoved his whole hand through his chest like it was nothing”
    “He really hates dogs wow”
    “Who has ever named their dog ‘Clown’?”

    “Okay now he’s talking to a dog. Relatable”

    “Ha he’s such a big softy for this dog”
    “The dog is now eating his pinky toe”
    “He’s secretly a huge softy”
    “He really just stabbed himself to get out of a conversation ME”

    “Ah, the Greasers”

Post-Reading Notes

Okay so I’m going to be honest with you guys – I have not finished this novel. But I’m working on it and I’m over halfway done with it, so I have a general idea of my thoughts. So what I’m going to do is post this review with my thoughts currently, and update it when I finish it completely. Sweet. Great. Anyways, speaking of my thoughts, let’s get into it. 

Update. Hey I finished it! And I don’t really have anything else to add so uhm. Yeah, bye 🙂

Favorite Quote from the Novel

“Who am I? I am the crumbs from your erasers. I am the paper shredded into your baskets. I am the ink that will never be spilled, only kept in a jar to coagulate, solidify, and become a black heart that has no more utility, not to anyone.”

– Zebulon Finch

My Thoughts

The Historical Aspect 

So, if it wasn’t obvious, this novel takes history and centers it around this undead guy, named Zebulon Finch. And Zebulon is involved in a lot of history events. Kraus does a really fantastic job of maneuvering Zebulon into these situations of importance without making it seemed forced. The idea that someone can be involved in every single one of these historical events is a little far-fetched, but hey, it’s historical fiction for a reason. 

Zebulon Finch

The thing with Zebulon is that he’s kind of a mess. In most ways. But, beyond that, his character is very interesting. He has this “I don’t care” attitude but he leaves the people he cares about when their safety is in danger. He curses God and everything somewhat holy but a part of him wants something to believe in again. He maims and kills when he must and a part of him feels sorry for every innocent soul he’s ever harmed. He’s character is made up of contradictions but not the bad ones. Just the intriguing ones. 

I Get A Little Bored Sometimes

There are just times with this novel that I find myself skimming over certain paragraphs because the situation at hand is lackluster. It just seems like some scenes are fillers for what’s to come, which is normal, but sometimes these scenes are the ones that are supposed to be important, and I just can’t get into them because they are going so slow. 

Final Overall Review and Rating


This duology is extremely poetic and holds a very unique concept. I’ve never read anything quite like it. Zebulon is the definition of a lost soul roaming earth in search of something and we get to go on a journey with him to see if he finds whatever it is he’s looking for. 

Would/Will I Continue the Series?

Seeing as I haven’t finished the first novel yet, I don’t really know if I would like to hear more from Zebulon or not. It depends on the ending. Though, this is the last official novel for this series.

Update part 2! Upon finishing this novel, I think I’m okay with where I am left with Zebulon. I do think it would be funny if he were still in the modern world and how he would navigate it but I’m content with his longer than normal life as it is.

Who Should Read This Novel 

History buffs should definitely read this novel. Also, those who really want to sit down and read a novel that will make them think, not just something that will pass the time. 

Novel Review – ‘The Heart Forger’ by Rin Chupeco

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The Heart Forger by Rin Chupeco

Page Number 



Young Adult, Fiction, and Paranormal 

Life isn’t fair. 
And sometimes, 

neither is death.

No one knows death like Tea. A bone witch who can resurrect the dead, she has the power to take life. . .and return it. And she is done with her self-imposed exile. Her heart is set on vengeance, and she now possesses all she needs to command the mighty daeva. With the help of these terrifying beasts, she can finally enact revenge against the royals who wronged her–and took the life of her one true love.

But there are those who plot against her, those who would use Tea’s dark power for their own nefarious ends. Because you can’t kill someone who can never die. . . 

War is brewing among the kingdoms, and when dark magic is at play, no one is safe. 

Pre-Reading Notes

Oh my goodness, I’m so excited! This is the second novel to The Bone Witch Trilogy and it’s taking me back. A little over a year ago, I read The Bone Witch and ranted to anyone that dared to listen about how much I loved it. I was staying with my grandmother at the time and she gave me the idea to start a blog and write what I feel about books. And well, here we are. So this series in general will always hold a very special place in my heart. Besides all the mushy stuff, this novel is so unique and I can’t wait to see what else happens with Tea. 

“Mid” Reading Thoughts

    “Oh boy, we’re going straight in”
    “Please stop pining”
    “Kalen please”
    “TEA NO”
    “This is going badly for our heroes oh boy”
    “Tea – spill”
    “About time”
    “I ship it”

    “Oh this is really bad oh no”

Post-Reading Notes

I am so enamored with this series. There’s something in the characters combined with the never ending action, whether prevalent or not, that entrances me. I finished this novel in one day because I couldn’t bear to part with Tea, Fox, Kalen, and all the other characters I’ve grown to love. So, let’s enjoy a quote together and then dive into The Heart Forger.

Favorite Quote from the Novel

“Some days will be better than others. Some days you will wake up crying, his name the first to fall from your lips. Some days, you will look up at the stars in the sky from a lonely beach and know none of them look down on him. That is the nature of grief. But to grieve means you have loved. To love opens up the possibility for grief. There cannot be one without the other.”

– Tea Pahlavi

My Thoughts

Fox is the Character We All Need and Deserve

I’ve always enjoyed humor in the novels I read, even if it’s in the middle of action and is supposed to be really serious. I just find that it livens up the story and makes the characters seem more human, rather than these people who fight and fight with no varying emotions. Because of this, Fox may just be my favorite character out of this whole series. I love the way that he makes light of losing his limbs in a fight or his little jokes in times of crisis. In times like that, it’s important to have someone who reminds you of who you were before the chaos began and that’s what Fox is to the rest of our heroes. 

The Dynamic of Knowing What Happens but Not Knowing How You Get There

I talked about this in my previous review of The Bone Witch but I am so in love with how Chupeco wrote this novel. For a quick run down, the chapters go back and forth between two point of views, and two time periods. One point of view is of Tea in first person as she is living her life and the other perspective is of “Bard”, a chronicler that Tea summoned to tell her story to, so he can tell it to others after she is gone. Both point of views move forward, it’s just a matter of when they began. 

One of the reasons I love this layout so much is because it doesn’t leave me guessing with the end result, but it makes me theorize and ponder over how they got there. Kudos to Chupeco because it’s so hard to write a piece of work that tells the reader the answer, but makes them still want to find out the formula of how that answer was achieved. It’s so unlike anything I’ve ever read and I love that in a novel. 

Every Detail is Useful

There are no useless details in this series. Everything that is revealed, even if it seems minor, is so important in the end result. I really appreciate that because it blocks out the need to decipher which details are important and which are not, but it also allows turns into this game of connecting the dots. And it seems I keep losing to Chupeco because she keeps surprising me, but I don’t think I mind. 

Final Overall Review and Rating


I honestly enjoyed this novel more than The Bone Witch, though I do love them both. During The Heart Forger, I felt like I got closer to the characters, before and after Tea’s self-proclaimed exile. I also enjoyed this new depth in Tea’s character. Even though we already know how it ends, the journey of how she gets there is still so interesting. (Also, Tea and Kalen for the win thanks)

Would/Will I Continue the Series?

Of course! The final edition to this trilogy is called The Shadowglass and it’s expected to be released in March of 2019.

Who Should Read This Novel 

I think those who love magic and witches should read this novel, of course. But I also believe that those who love an anti-hero/a hero with a dark side that’s getting more and more severe should read this novel.