Top Ten Tuesday | Books That Surprised Me

 

Okay, I’m going to play nice for this week’s Top Ten Tuesday, hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl. I want to talk about books that surprised me for the good. I can rant about books I can’t stand, but I don’t see the point right now. So here’s my list of the books that pleasantly surprised me:

Warcross by Marie Lu

Rainbow hair, virtual reality, plot twists. I’M IN HEAVEN. I’m not a huge sci-fi reader, but Marie makes me want to be one. I’m still thinking about this book. And that cliffhanger is killing me right. I adore Emika. She’s one of my favourite characters!

If the sequel isn’t called Darkcross, I’ll be salty. Salty, people.

 

Everless by Sara Holland

Okay, I’ve read this book only once, but I want to read it again…and again. I adore the main character, Jules, who fights for the people she loves. She understands and knows of poverty, hunger, and a resentment of people who want nothing more than to push the poor down further. But Sara builds in twists that surprise you. I know I’ll read this book again.

 

The Cruel Prince by Holly Black

Court intrigue, politics, dark romance, and21 trickery all rolled up into one beautiful book. Can I fangirl any harder? No, I need to buy candles to reach that level (don’t tempt me; I’ll buy them). I know Holly from Cassie Clare, but I wish I found her work much sooner though. Her dark writing is gorgeous.

And can we talk about a certain male character having a tail? 😂 He. Has. A. Tail. I’ve seen it all, apparently.

 

A Darker Shade of Magic by V. E. Schwab

Grey London. Red London. White London. Black London. ALL THE LONDONS. Okay, maybe not the Black. I loved this book. It’s been on my TBR list for years, but I didn’t read it until last year though. The way Victoria blends in fantasy and sci-fi just makes me love those genres more. I’m all for a time travel story, but she takes it to a different dimension.

 

Wintersong by S. Jae-Jones

This book is whimsical and enchanting. And it took me a while to get over the story and that ending. I am a huge fan of the Goblin King, Bowie’s and the original version. So I had a high expectation for Wintersong. I didn’t know what to expect or what I’d love, but Sarah didn’t disappoint. Her writing and storytelling for a debut author are superb, and I cannot wait to read Shadowsong.

Review: The Cruel Prince by Holly Black

The Cruel Prince by Holly Black

Published by: Little, Brown Books

Publication Date: January 2, 2018

Genre: Young Adult, Fantasy

Page Count: 370

Rating: 5/5

Source: Purchase

Goodreads | Indigo | Amazon CAN | Amazon US | Book Depository


Of course I want to be like them. They’re beautiful as blades forged in some divine fire. They will live forever.

And Cardan is even more beautiful than the rest. I hate him more than all the others. I hate him so much that sometimes when I look at him, I can hardly breathe.

Jude was seven years old when her parents were murdered and she and her two sisters were stolen away to live in the treacherous High Court of Faerie. Ten years later, Jude wants nothing more than to belong there, despite her mortality. But many of the fey despise humans. Especially Prince Cardan, the youngest and wickedest son of the High King.

To win a place at the Court, she must defy him–and face the consequences.

In doing so, she becomes embroiled in palace intrigues and deceptions, discovering her own capacity for bloodshed. But as civil war threatens to drown the Courts of Faerie in violence, Jude will need to risk her life in a dangerous alliance to save her sisters, and Faerie itself.


Instead of being afraid, I could become something to fear.

I don’t usually find a book that renders me useless when writing its review. But Holly Black’s The Cruel Prince does all that and more. I struggle writing it because I wonder how I can possibly match the level of creativity in this book. I certainly hope so, but let’s get one fact straight: I am an instant Holly fan. And I want to go back to Elfhame.

Political power plays, deception, and betrayal beautifully introduces you to a wicked and depraved world where deceitful acts are a way of life in Faerieland, and you must be brutal to survive this magnificent yet threatening landscape.

Holly brings you complex and multi-faceted characters who outwit their enemies and betray their family. What do you expect from the fae? In this harsh world though, humans are sometimes no better than the faeries who trap them in Faerieland.

Most of all, I hate you because I think of you. Often. It’s disgusting, and I can’t stop.

Jude—whether villain or heroine—adapts rather well even though the fae man who brought her and her sisters killed their parents in front of them. Forced to live in this surreal land, she lets her revenge guide and forge her into a warrior, and her ambition to never be weak again shapes her into a clever and devious main character. She kept me guessing her every move. And her development and scheming make this book captivating.

Cardan, the broken prince with a past to hide, surprises me. Yes, at first, I couldn’t stand how he treats Jude and her twin sister, Taryn. But this world has molded him into the wicked prince he is. But that reason is not an excuse though. And yet this character conceals more than what he shows though. I’m intrigued to see how his character development unfolds.

The family dynamic builds throughout the story. Taryn often warns Jude not to offend or to draw attention from any of the fae, especially from Cardan. The three sisters’ relationship is rather complicated, I find though. Vivienne, the oldest sister who is half-fae, infuriates me since she doesn’t shield her siblings from her world. But these siblings grow to love General Madoc, which murdered their loved ones. In the end, Jude wonders who she can trust. Will blood betray her, or will she be forced to deceive them?

Even though Holly’s writing is inspiring, it never stops you from seeing the seedy underbelly of the fae and their land. The vicious behaviour faeries show toward humans harshly contrasts against the elegance of this world. Holly reminds you that even though they are stunning, with a smile on their face, they’ll always find a way to slit your throat. This constant threat heightens the storyline. And I have to admit, that I love that.

With court and political intrigue, a budding dark romance, and atmospheric writing, Holly Black’s The Cruel Prince reveals the dark side of Faerie. It is one of the most gratifying books I’ve read in a long time. And now I’m counting down the days until I have The Wicked King in my hands.

Monthly Wrap-Up | February 2018

Hi, dearies!

February is gone? Really? I feel as if it flew past me, and I had no time to get anything done. I certainly haven’t put any dent into that TBR pile, which likes nothing than to laugh at me. Okay, I may need a break if I think my books are taunting me (send help).

This part may not be book related, but I absolutely loved the Black Panther. Can I get more Shuri, please?! I’m so happy to see a female character championing STEM. I really do, and I’m counting down the days until I see Infinity Wars.

 

Look at that. I read more than four books in a month. Woo!!! 😅 I wish I had more time to get to more though. They’re too tempting to see on my shelf. And if you know the secret of how to read quicker, teach me your ways, please.

 

 

Everless by Sara Holland

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

I love, love, LOVE this book. I cannot get enough of it. I don’t always rave about a debut novel, but you need to read it. Please. I need someone to fangirl with. Sara blends together deception, secrets, and political intrigue in this novel. I’m seriously impressed with her writing and storytelling.

 

Romanov by Samaire Provost

⭐⭐⭐

I thought I left vampires behind, but I was reminiscing over the books I loved, so I signed up for this tour. While it has some rough sections, Romanov is a family-centred fantasy with Russian lore mixed in.

 

Devil’s Gold by Amanda McKinney

⭐⭐⭐⭐

This novella is short yet sweet and so steamy. I want to read more mystery and thriller novels, and I’m glad I picked up this one. Amanda draws you in with independent and strong-willed female characters and a fast-paced writing. I can’t wait to see the next story.

 

The Cruel Prince by Holly Black

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

I find that writing the review of this book is hard. But The Cruel Prince, by far, one of my favourite reads of 2018. There is a lot of hype surrounding this book, so I wasn’t sure what I’d get out of it. However, Holly knows how to write fae stories. Jude is a ruthless human who can easily rival faeries. Cardan, the broken prince, is a worthy opponent for her.

My review is coming soon!

 

This Fallen Prey by Kelley Armstrong

⭐⭐⭐⭐

Am I Kelley fan? Yup. Did she make a stellar thriller? Hell yes. Her Rockton Thriller is burning up the mystery scene, and I cannot wait to read the next book.

If you’re looking for an atmospheric book with a touch of romance and fantastic writing, pick up this series.

 

You can find my review posts linked in the titles above.


 

I think I’ve lost count on how many books I need to read, but I keep adding to my literal TBR pile, without actually tackling it. Am I ever going to see it go down to single digits? HA. Now I understand why there are so many memes to help bloggers lower their list.

I lucked out this month by winning a free copy of The Hazel Wood. Thank you, Indigo Teen! I can’t wait to read it.

 


 

How exciting was February for you? Did you grab your most anticipated book of the month? Let me know in the comments.

Monthly Wrap-Up | January 2018

 

Hey book nerds!

As you can tell, I’ve redesigned some of my blog graphics. And I’ve combined the reading round-up and book haul posts into one, which is more easier to handle. I hope to revamp my entire blog, including my name (about time I can do that). Last year I struggled to keep up with some posts and just kept pushing things off, but I want to stay on top of my blog, so I’ll be scheduling much more this year.

Last month wasn’t that eventful, but I had the opportunity to jump on several blog tours and finish a few books that have been waiting on my TBR list. So here they are:

 

I was trying to catch up on my TBR pile since a particularly nasty cold hit me hard in December. So even though I wanted to read more, I could only get to four books in January.

 

 

Warcross by Marie Lu

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

I haven’t read any of Marie’s previous work, and right now, I feel like I missed out on great writing. Warcross surprised me, and I instantly fell in love with this virtual reality clashing with reality.

I highly recommend this book.

 

Deadly Sweet by Lola Dodge

⭐⭐⭐¾

I’m always down for a witch story. For the past couple of years, I’ve steered clear of them because I’ve read too many that just blended in to each other. Just picture the sweetest bakery with a high dose of magic, and you have Deadly Sweet. I’m interested to see what Lola has in store for the sequel(s).

 

Rise by Sierra Cross

⭐⭐⭐⭐

Another witch book in one month? Really? Don’t worry. This story didn’t disappoint either. But this adult one has the sexual tension cranked high.

 

Batman: Nightwalker by Marie Lu

⭐⭐⭐⭐

Surprisingly, as a Batman fan, I wasn’t sure how this book might stand up to the other stories and back history of the character, but Marie truly doesn’t disappoint DC fans. There are slow scenes that may detract from the storyline, but just hold on though. You’ll get your action soon enough.

 

You can find my review posts linked in the titles above.


I didn’t buy a huge lot in January. There weren’t many books that interested me. But a few caught my eye, and I couldn’t pass up on snagging them. I’ve already read two, and I can’t wait to read my first Holly Black book.

 

 

 


What caught your eye last month? Why don’t we catch up in the comments’ section!