Fall of Thrones and Thorns

Author: Jennifer Ellision

Pages: 312

ISBN: 978-1537334653

Series: Threats of Sky and Sea

Genre: Fantasy

Bree and her friends are finally making it to Nereidium but the island is plagued by mysterious earthquakes which forces the party into action. After revealing herself as the lost queen, Bree now learns what it means to be a water thrower with the help of her people and her aunt.

When the earthquakes on Nereidium get stronger though and the people are in danger, Bree and her friends have no time to lose anymore to defeat the king of Egria and install Caden as the new ruler. Back in Egria, they have to find more allies to end up on the winning side of the fight.

With time running out, they have to give everything to stop the evil king from destroying the rest of the world. Encouraged by this, they are trying their hardest to defeat King Langdon but it might be too late as he has become stronger than ever before.


I received this book for an honest review from NetGalley.

My first reaction after finishing it: Finally, I made it. It took me so long to get through it, I had to force myself to read a bit every now and then. After I did not really enjoy the second book, I was not really hopeful that I would like this one better but I somehow was even more disappointed.

Overall, I had a problem with the story or at least how it was coming together. I feel like way too much happened conveniently in the book before the ending, and then, the final ‘battle’ was so short, I could not believe it. Not that I was overly sad by this point because I just wanted the book to end.

So, let’s start at the beginning and I am sorry, but this will contain spoilers but I have to include them as the things that happened made the book almost unbearable to finish. (If you want to avoid them, just skip the next three paragraphs.)

For me, the beginning was real slow, Bree was starting to do some queenly duties and she was for some reason separated from her friends. It did not make sense to me at all and when everybody else just seems to have an epiphany of what they will do with their life and what their part in ending the tyranny looks like, while nothing was happening. And this does not count as character development for me. It was almost already too much for me.

And then, when finally, something happened with some Shaker on the ‘mainland’, I started to get really mad at the book because the reader is given no worthy reason for all the party – including the new Queen of Neiridium – to return to Egria and fight against this threat. I know that she is the hero of the story but she is the long lost queen, it makes no sense for her to leave her people again and most certainly be in danger of getting injured or killed. This ‘twist’ was in my eye just a lame excuse in the story for her to do exactly what needed to happen so she could end up in a confrontation with king Langdon. I would be fine if there was even a tiny justification for this to happen but there is nothing.

After this extremely disappointing first half I hoped that the rest of the book might be at least all right, I mean it could not get any worse, right?! Ultimately I thought, there will be a final battle with the evil king and there was a lot of book left to make it a grand one but again, the author put a storyline in that I could absolutely not get into. I found it hard to read the very short fight with the king as there is the confrontation with this extremely powerful shaker that takes up a very big time in the narrative. And somehow, this character that appeared out of thin air for the sake of the story, is able to beat the group which has had the time to train, control and fight with their elements. I don’t mind that they lose, maybe he is more powerful, but then, and this made me even angrier, beating the king feels like a walk in the park compared to that. A bunch of trained soldiers and Elementals is not able to win against the Shaker (which did not make any sense to me why they could not while reading the scene) and then almost on her own, Bree is able to defeat the king. Especially, considering that – again without any explanation – the evil ruler was able to get powers on his own while on top of that he has an army at his disposal that should at least be able to make the fight harder.

And then the epilogue, which I don’t even want to start on…

All in all, I found the story to be not really well thought through, the things that happened seemed to be just put together to somehow end up with a confrontation between Bree and the king. Aside from that, I got really annoyed with the characters as well, there was hardly any development and depth to them. Also, the people that travel with Bree the whole time just got paired up with each other in the end. Seriously?!

I basically found nothing that I could enjoy about the book and I am really sad to say this because I am sure the author put a lot of effort in it.

This book was simply put not for me at all, I would have needed the story to be more logical.

The Young Elites

Author: Marie Lu

Pages: 357

ISBN: 978-0-141-36182-6

Series: The Young Elites

Genre: Fantasy

Adelina, survivor of the blood fever, has to fight for her life again after running away from her home and being hunted by the Inquisition Axis. The plague has marked her as a malfetto with silver hair, her left eye missing, and special powers that make the Young Elites notice her.

The Dagger society, a group of Young Elites, and Adelina soon realise that her powers are dark and have the potential to be the most advanced yet. She struggles to keep her dark thoughts buried deep inside her but at the same time, they make her powerful so she can take revenge on all the people that wronged her.

The Daggers and their leader Enzo Valenciano are determined to free the nation from the king and queen and their attempts to kill all malfettos with the help of Adelina. She tries to trust Enzo and his group but she is plagued by doubts and when she meets Teren Santoro, the leader of the Inquisition Axis, she must decide which side she is on as he has a secret that has the potential to ruin everything.


It’s hard to write this review as I am really torn about how I feel. I can‘t really describe what it is that makes me feel this way. I heard so many good things about the book that I maybe went in with too many expectations.

I think first of all, from the synopsis on the book I was somehow expecting something different, a more badass main character Adelina and a real secret of Teren that the reader does not know until very late in the book.

I thought Adelina would be ruthless and trying to get revenge no matter the cost but she is a character that struggles with her dark side and does not want it to take the better of her but because it enables her to fight, she is using that power. I don’t necessarily have a problem with this kind of character but I just could not see the ‘desire to destroy all who dare to cross her’ which I was promised… Aside from that, I really think it makes sense that she is the way she is, wanting to take revenge but also just be free and safe from people like her father and the Inquisition.

My problem with Teren’s secret is that it not really is a secret because the reader is informed about it very early on in the book, it’s just that other characters in the story don’t know about it. This is not an issue with the character itself but more with the writing and how the story is developed during the book. Nevertheless, Teren was kind of the only character I wanted to know more about, his background and why he became the way he is now.

This was exactly the opposite for Enzo although he is quite mysterious with the way he is acting and because we don’t really know what he is doing when he is away from the Dagger’s hideout. But still I could not bring myself to be thoroughly interested in his character. I also felt the connection between him and Adelina to be developing too fast as they don’t really talk a lot and it feels fuelled only by the mystery between them. I have my aversions with insta-love and as they don’t spent a lot of time together, this comes awfully close to it.

Apart from the protagonists, I had a problem with the world building, mainly because of the writing style I guess. I It is very straight forward and to the point which isn’t bad at all but somehow it took the imagination of how the world looks like away. It seems very Italian with the names, the buildings and the things that happen in the world, at least to the extent that the reader gets to know.

Although there is quite a lot I found not to my liking, I still overall liked the book, which is a little weird. I did not read it in one sitting and had to take brakes while reading but due to the writing style I made it through very quickly and it did not feel time consuming. I am interested how Adelina’s story continues and the epilogue left me rather intrigued by what could happen. I am hoping that the Rose Society can convince me more but I don’t want to go into it with too many expectations again to not be disappointed again.

More from Marie Lu

Spinning Starlight

Author: R.C. Lewis

Pages: 327

ISBN: 978-148472368-5

Series: -

Genre: Fairy Tale Retelling

Facing an almost unsolvable task, 16-year-old Liddi Jantzen has to rescue her brothers without saying a word as this trigger their death. After she comes home to find shots being fired, she runs away only to discover an interplanetary conspiracy including her brothers being held captive and a device implanted that will kill them if she says anything.

Not wanting to accept that there is no hope, she travels to another planet but without a decent form of communication her chance to rescue her brothers in time are getting slimmer every day. Although the process is slow, Liddi is able to deduce more and more of how her brothers’ lives and the fate of the planets she knows is interconnected.

With the help of Tiav, a dignitary from the planet she run off to, and almost out of time, she has to come up with a way to save everything and return order to her universe.   


There was no other option than to read the book after I read the first chapter at the end of Stiching Snow. I loved the way it started and also the premise of the book, another fairy tale-retelling set in space.

Because I liked Stiching Snow so much, maybe my expectations were a little high but nevertheless I felt really disappointed after only reading a few chapters. After enjoying Liddi in the first chapter, this feeling could not be sustained continuing the story. Even though there were a lot of background information that should make me care, I was not really moved by her story or her parent’s death or her being constantly surrounded by paparazzi. I also did not care about her missing brothers in a way I wished I would.

In general, all the characters in the book could not ignite the spark or sympathy or anything like that so I was concerned about what might happen to them or how they feel. This seems to be mainly because there were so many different protagonists playing a role from so many different alien races which weren’t properly introduced to round up the picture.

This is leading me to the point of the book that made it hard to read sometimes and I found myself having to re-read some passages a few times. The world building is not great in my eyes. Maybe the surroundings are described nicely and I can imagine how the planets look like but the ‘science’ is not explained properly to an extent that it makes sense to me. Liddi’s brothers are trapped in some kind of conduit-interplanetary travel system interaction with some living beings but the explanation of how everything works is way too confusing. I don’t want to say that the system is not well thought trough but when the book is only about 320 pages long and a lot of time is spent with Liddi trying to communicate with others, something has to come short.

Another negative for me is the relationship between Liddi and Tiav. After he initially helped her because she was lost and could not speak, he tries really hard to communicate with her. As writing is not used anymore from where Liddi is from, it is really hard for her to express herself. Even though Tiav writes a computer program which helps her to formulate sentences but the process takes forever for just a short sentences. This though is not what bothers me although we are reminded about every few pages how hard it is and how long it takes to write anything. My problem is that somehow they have such a deep connection that after only a few days working together he looks into her eyes and somehow can tell what she wants to convey. And then obviously after only a few weeks they fall in love even though they hardly know anything about each other, well Liddi knows more about Tiav than the other way around as he can actually speak.

I have read few stories where I am not annoyed with characters that barely know the other person, then fall in love, kiss, and hold hands and him/her choses the new love over the family or only thing he/she knew for the whole life.

In the end I have to say that the interesting premise was sadly only that for me and the execution and building of the story could not move me. Still I think that if you have no problem with the relationship between Liddi and Tiav, this book can be an entertaining read.


Author: Julie Dill

Pages: 250

ISBN: 978-1944995058

Series: -

Genre: Contemporary

Chelsea’s life is not easy. Being alone with her dad, they have a hard time paying the bills yet it still isn’t enough and Chelsea starts gambling. After her mother left, it’s only Chelsea and her dad and as life somehow seems to get more expensive with Chelsea’s cheering and food and electricity, Chelsea is desperate to find a way out of the misery.

Because she has been playing poker with her dad when she grew up she is sure this is the way to make some extra money. The problem though is her age. As she is only seventeen, she is not yet legally allowed to play in a casino so she has to construct lie after lie to not be exposed. She also hides her late night activities from her father and friends at school.

While it gets harder and harder to keep up her story, she also starts to fall for one of the security guys at the casino. Still sure she got everything under control it might just be a matter of time before everything starts to go south.


I received this book from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

I though the synopsis sounded really interesting not only dealing with gambling addiction but also with a character that is under age at the same time. I have to admit that I was really disappointed by the book and the story. I don’t intend to offend anyone with my review, I can only say how realistically executed I found the book.

First of all, I think the premise was set quite nicely, the fact that Chelsea is so desperate to get her hands on money as her father is somehow unable to take care of them. So she tries her luck at the poker table of the local casino. I just don’t see why she is not just getting a job as she apparently has an enormous amount of time which she can spend gambling instead. I think the author could have found at least one convincing reason for her not to take this action.

To be honest though, her life situation being broke and not wanting to go to her rich friends for money because she would be ashamed was about the only thing I found in any way convincing about the book.

I was not able to feel for Chelsea whatsoever, I was mostly annoyed by her decisions although I know that addicted gambles don’t necessarily have rational thoughts. I mean on one occasion she wins about $1200 and the first thing she does is buy designer shoes for around $150 and clothes. I felt betrayed in this situation because normally all Chelsea could thing about was paying the bills and she could as well have bought shoes for maybe only $40. In addition to that, her friends at school asked her about the new expensive shoes and she found a stupid excuse that nobody actually questioned although everybody knows about her financial situation?!

With the rest of the money, one thing she also did was fill up her tank and then she fantasised how far she will get with all this gas but only a couple days later she was out of gas again. I mean, where is she driving the whole time? The only thing we get told is her driving to school and to the casino. I was really annoyed by that.

The whole thing is getting even more disturbing when she tells her best friend that she was gambling for some extra money. So somebody knows about her having been at the casino multiple times and she does not really try a lot to help her, especially when Chelsea is separating herself from everybody else even more.

These were only a few things that I could not get into at all concerning the main protagonist. Apart from that, the ‘supporting cast’ of the story was one-dimensional and unlikable in my eyes. Her love interest was cute and only had eyes for her after he saw her for the first time (cliché) and I could not help myself but wait for something bad or shady he does. I feel like if this character would have been left out, there would definitely have been more story left to make Chelsea’s story more rounded.

I think that the issue brought up by the book is a really important one to make but there was too much that was not convincing in my view. And I have to say that the ending almost left me with an even bigger shake of the head but the last page was actually the most realistic thing about the book.

All in all, I had to force myself to read through the book. There are actually a lot more issues in this read for me than I wrote about. My ultimate critique about the book is the fact that in order to raise the problem of a gambling addiction, the author attempted to put too much into the story so that the realism of the situation was lost on the way.


Author: Amie Kaufman & Jay Kristoff

Pages: 659

ISBN: 978-1-78074-981-5

Series: The Illuminae Files #2

Genre: SciFi

After its close escape, the Hypatia cannot make contact with space station Heimdall because BeiTech is determined to leave no witnesses this time. Not willing to repeat the mistake they made with the last hunt, they now send an elite assault team to finish the job once and for all.

But they have underestimated the crew’s determination to fight for their lives, in particular Hanna Donnelly and Niklas Malikov. They both could not be more different, she the daughter of the station’s captain, he a member of a crime family selling drugs. When everything starts to go wrong, they have to work together to have a chance to get out of this alive.

With more and more people dying and more and more problems staring to stand in their way, it seems to be only a matter of time until the trained soldiers can overpower the revolt and finish the job.


This is one of those books I read on one day and that is quite something, considering the page count is about 660. I just was not able to put it down, it was just too good. I mean, yes, it was not easy at times to get your hopes up when things went well only to be politely reminded by the authors that this is not the way it works. But still I had to keep going and going and going.

This book was one of my most anticipated reads this year, if not the one I wanted to get my hands on the most.

I already said it about Illuminae, but the style of the book again is one of the things I loved the most. Although I can’t really say that because I can’t chose which aspect is the best really. I can understand why this is not for everyone yet I am grateful that not every book is the same and only has chapters named after the person that is telling the story or numbers (This is a totally acceptable way to do it but I still crave for chapter titles deep down in my heart). I was actually always looking forward to finish the surveillance camera parts as fast as possible to enjoy the other styles of telling the story again. Especially the graphics and illustrations of the happenings outside the station which brings me to something that I will forever cherish about the books.

I know that I have some advantages over other readers when it comes to the physic parts of the book as I have a degree in Physics. Nevertheless, I think the authors did an amazing job in waving theoretical physics into a story for young readers although I can admit it can be a bit much when you are not familiar with the topic at all. I am happy that readers can learn about the multiverse theory, wormholes and more fun facts about space. I get enthusiastic when reading it or writing about it, so I just better stop now, but it’s so cool.

Apart from the realistic descriptions of space, I find the plot to very believable, especially because the main characters of the story don’t get everything right and have to fight very hard to get out of situations (alive). And they have to deal with losses and uncertainty which I think they do very realistically in certain aspects which is first and foremost the language. I realize that all the blacked out words can be a little annoying sometimes, especially when you can’t figure them out (well, I’m not native speaker and don’t know all the swear words) but to me they are just so much more genuine and comparable to real life conversations. Ok, maybe not the swear words, but in general the way the characters speak and act feels way more normal, I mean, how often do you have a conversation where you don’t find the perfect words at the first try or it takes some time to finish a thought and speak it out loud.

But I actually wanted to talk about the plot. The fact that it is SciFi with real life physics, inventions and problems (personal ones, not that it happens so regularly being ambushed by elite soldiers) is a perfect combination for my taste. Having grown up with Star Trek and so on, the story just transports me back to those years and I just wish to go explore the universe on a spaceship or a space station (and I want to see a wormhole, for real).

All in all, this book was somehow too much for me. After the last sentence I had so many feelings, I was happy to be finished as I knew the ending but the way there was also very exhausting because getting your hopes up and all just to have them crushed. But the worst feeling was the fact that now I have to wait another year (!!!!!) to read the next one which is making me quite sad. I knew before reading that 660 pages will not be enough and I was right, I want more, right now, I need the next book.

What’s left to say? Well, …

The pattern is always the same.

More from Amie Kaufman, Jay Kristoff

Crooked Kingdom

Author: Leigh Bardugo

Pages: 536

ISBN: 978-1-78062-230-9

Series: Six of Crows #2

Genre: Fantasy

Kaz and his crew are just back from the heist, yet they are double-crossed and have to fight to get one of their own back and ultimately take revenge. As Jan van Eck is not honouring the deal he made with Brekker, the Crows are determined to take him out and destroy everything he worked for and tries to protect.

The revenge on van Eck though is not all they have on their minds as a war seems inevitable over what they brought back from the heist and everyone is interested in getting their hands on. Short on allies and resources it seems like everything and everyone is working against them.

The unlikely crew has to be on their best to see their plans through but with that many players and all out on the hunt for them, there is a great chance for things to go terribly wrong.


So I remember thinking after reading ‘Six of Crows’ that it was so good and everything that it could have worked as a standalone. And honestly I still think it does. But there is no way for me to describe how glad I am that there is another book following Kaz Brekker’s crew. I tried to make this spoiler free, otherwise this would not be so short (although it already is quite long for my standards).

I would have so regretted to not read this book just because everything was absolutely and genuinely perfect, from the first page through the last (which means, I also like the ending). Maybe also because Kaz is my favourite male character of all the books I read so far (and he will most likely not been dethroned in a very long time). I just can’t help myself, even though he is not what one considers to be a good person. He is scheming and stealing and trying to destroy other people’s lives (well, sure, they have wronged him, but to what lengths he goes to do this is kind of scary). In short, you should not have him as your enemy.

Which is what happens in the story and so he makes his planes to take them down. And I just love every single one of his plans and schemes because they just seem so realistic and very carefully planned, it’s truly beautiful to read. But although he tries to plan everything, sometimes even he is surprised (so yeah, he is not perfect) even though he will most likely find a way out of the situation with at least a little advantage on his side.

Anyway, all the other main characters in the book are great as well in my eyes. Well, they have been in the first already yet some of them weren’t as convincing for me in ‘Six of Crows’. But now, they get so much more depth to them, well written background stories which makes them come to life even more.

This is actually one of the things I love so much about the book as the characters history is revealed when the protagonist is in the middle of a situation that makes him or her remember the past. Even if it is just two or three pages, there are so well done and perfectly written that they were not in any way too much or interfering with the plot. On the contrary, they made it so much more thought trough.

Another aspect that I could not get enough of were the interactions between the characters as those made them grow as people but it also showed how skilled the author is. I love the funny lines, the deep conversations, and how those show the personalities and feelings of each of them. The writing in general is amazing, the description of the surroundings, the world and the atmosphere made me want to be in the same room or at the same place as the action. And as far as I can tell, not all of Ketterdam is a place you would want to find yourself to be in…

And of course, I adored the plot, I need more stories of this kind. It just made so much sense and the best part is, the reader never knows the whole story. Even the members of the crew don’t know all of it, just what they need to know. Sure, there are some things that one could guess but to be honest, I actually did not want to do this because I wanted to be amazed by the perfection of the resolution and outcome. More than once I was sitting there and thinking: ‘Nooooo, this is not happening. Please, Kaz thought about this and has a plan for this, plaese.’ And just before the last part (hmm, yet another aspect I love, that the book is divided into different parts and each one has a name) realisation dawned on me that I am starting the last pages of one of the best things I ever got to read.

So if there is one thing I kind of hate is that the book had to end. On the one hand I am happy that the end of the series was this amazing read as it somehow feels that the story of the Crows is told and more could end in disaster (forced story and so on). On the other hand I sincerely hope that one day, there is another story about Kaz (haha, yep, he truly is my favourite!) because I just need to know more and can’t let go just yet. I think there is much more to tell about the other characters as well, so I plead for more, I’ll take whatever I get!!

Finally, the book is filled with so many quotes and stories that deserve to be repeated and told and shouted out to the world but for me, there was one particular moment at the very beginning of the book. It is so random and has no deep meaning as maybe other passages but it stuck and after reading it, I just knew that I would adore this book.

“There’s coffee,” said the clerk when Retvenko entered the harbourmaster’s office, gesturing toward a copper urn in the corner.


“There’s coffee.”

This country.

I’m doing an imaginary curtsy for the author, her story and her writing!

More from Leigh Bardugo

Riot of Storm and Smoke

Author: Jennifer Ellision

Pages: 350

ISBN: 978-1515288152

Series: Threats of Sky and Sea

Genre: Fantasy

After escaping the king and the castle for now, Breena and her friends now have to make it out of the city alive and get to Nereidium to fight back. With the help of the Underground they try to make it to Clavins to find a ship that will bring them to the Island Kingdom Nereidium.

The journey to the port city is not easy though on its own as they have to face different climates, a lack of water to drink and bandits taking them hostage. As some unfortunate incident in the bandit camp separates Breena from the others she has to find a way to Clavins and back to her friends.

All the while, Prince Caden is trying his best to fight the king in his own way, rallying the nobles and trying to convince them to fight for good side. With the help of an old friend he is trying to get as many troops as possible before the king can defeat them. But as not everything goes as planned, he has to retreat to Clavins where there is a chance to be reunited with the Breena and her group before the journey across the sea.


The book was provided by NetGalley for an honest review.

I was hoping for more after the first book but here I am, disappointed by the outcome.

The flaws that were outweighed by the good things in the first book are really much disturbing me now. I still don’t have any idea of the geography, sometimes Clavins seems to be the country, sometimes it’s the name of the city or I might just get it wrong. There is also some little politics coming up yet there is an utter lack of background information and so I can’t really bring myself to care about it. It gets so hard to read those passages though as there is too much missing for my taste.

I also have this problem with the ‘magic’ again and by now it feels like some kind of magic being in the book as apparently nobody knows anything about it or if they do, they don’t share their knowledge. It might be fine in the beginning of a series but with time I get the feeling that the author can do anything she likes to with the abilities the characters have as anything can be possible with almost no boundaries existing.

On a good note though, there was some character development as Breena has to accept the news she got at the end of book one. I think this was nicely done as the actions of her seem to fit to the state of mind she is in. I also liked that we get inside the head of Caden as there are chapters told from his perspective now as well. Unfortunately, I feel not a single bit for the characters and would not really mind if one would be left behind or died…

I also think that the overall story is still plausible yet somehow although something is constantly happening in the book, there is not really that much overall progress plot wise. Somehow it feels that there is going to be so much in the third book that I am a little afraid that there will be even less world building.

But although there is so much I did not like about the book, it was in the end readable and it was not necessarily that I had to force myself to read it.It

Threats of Sky and Sea

Author: Jennifer Ellision

Pages: 360

ISBN: 978-1494955847

Series: Threats of Sky and Sea

Genre: Fantasy

16 year-old Breena Perdit’s life is turned upside down when she encounters three Elementals in the woods who are looking for a traitor to the crown. Although she thinks that she has nothing to do with this affair, she soon has to face the fact that they are searching for her father.

They are both being dragged to the capital and her Da is thrown in prison for treason. Trying to save both their lives, Breena is striking a deal with the king to find out her father’s secrets and why he left his position so many years ago. Contrary to how she hoped this would turn out, she cannot make her dad talk and on top of that has to play her part at court of the evil king.

The longer it takes, the more she finds out about herself and her past and with the help of some new friends she made at court, she might even have a chance to free her father and escape the clutches of the king.


The book was provided by NetGalley for an honest review.

Reading the synopsis I was curious about the story so getting into the story was easy although it started a little weak in my eyes. After some time though, things started to get clear and I liked the overall story and it made sense for the most part although there are many things that we don’t know yet.

I liked the main character as she is thrown into a world she never wanted to be in and never could have imagined to find herself in. It is nice to see her struggle with her new impressions and information she find out as this just makes so much more rounded. She has her flaws and weaknesses and tries her best to overcome those in order to save those she loves and cares about. In the end, although all that, she is determined not to fail and is not afraid to provoke those around her.

I think there is so much more to learn about the other protagonists in the story but I already like one of them in particular because of how she acts and what she says. Yet all the characters who get a little more attention are very different from each other and it is fun to see the interactions between them.

Another good thing about the book is the ‘magic’ as I liked the idea of different people being able to control different elements. I just wish that is was a little more explored, giving more details on how it works or what is possible.

I think this is the general problem for me in this book, things are just being thrown into the world but they are lacking the proper description or background story. I feel like there is almost no world building which seems very important to me when there is an evil king oppresses almost the rest of the world. But what is this world, are there different countries and how do they connect.

And also the magic, even though the principle is as mentioned interesting, it just is not really well explained. I get that as the story is told from Breena’s perspective the reader can only know as much as she does yet I was more than once asking myself ‘how’ and ‘why’.

Regarding the characters, I feel there was not much explanation about how the look which is kind of bad as I cannot picture them so I cannot feel hugely attached to them. The only thing that stuck was the colour of the eyes of two protagonists and the hair colour of one other.

I really hope that the author is doing that in the second book to make it more rounded in my eyes. And I also am quite curious as to how the author is exploring continuing the story with the little plot twist at the end which was quite predictable in my eyes.

Overall I think it was still a good read though and I was able to get through the book relatively fast.

Street Soldier

Author: Andy McNab

Pages: 352

ISBN: 978-0857534699

Series: -

Genre: Action

Sean Harker finds himself in prison after he is caught by the police because the job he was doing with his crew did not go as planned. Meeting two guys from his gang there, he is determined to just do his time but when something happens that makes him think his life over, he takes a chance that was presented to him.

Joining the British Army for a project which recruits young offenders he finds a way out of his old life. Another benefit, he becomes part of a family that really looks out for each other and not like his old gang. He realises that after he has to buy their protection of his mum and in order to do so, he has to do things that could make him loose everything he gained in the Army.

Trying to right his mistakes, he has to find a way to save the citizen of London from one group’s crazy scheme. Still, Sean efforts might not be enough to save his career and all the innocent people.


I received a copy from NetGalley to give an honest review. I was eager to start reading it because reading the synopsis made me think of my very early reading days. And in the end, I was really happy to dive back into this genre.

As a fan of the Alex Rider series by Anthony Horowitz I was hoping that this book was kind of similar. It’s not, that you can really compare the stories yet I found some similarities and familiar elements and that made me really glad that I got to read this book.

I first had to get used to the language as this is not something you often find in YA although I would not necessarily consider that book YA, more like a hybrid. I think though that it really fit the character Sean and the overall atmosphere of the book. I like that Sean is really far from a character you might like at the start of the book, he is a thief and steals cars or whatever his crew is feeling like to steal. Yet, when accompanying him through the story, some very good character traits are revealed although he was still far from perfect. This is something that I really appreciate in my books as it makes it so much easier to relate to the characters when they are real people with faults and dark sides.

What was really good in my eyes as well was the pace of the book, there were no unneeded pages with descriptions of the surroundings or places that would not contribute much to the story. I felt it was overall much more a ‘story book’ because of that which was exactly what it good for the story, there was more time to concentrate on the ideas of the people. I found it very interesting to see that Sean has to go through a process where he is also part of something really wrong to realise that the ideas and plans of some are the wrong ones. And that he needs the help of others to figure that out, which is fine as he in the end still is just a teenager.

When I say there was not that much describing the world it’s not necessarily true as there is some detailed description of his activities in the army and how Sean feels when handling a gun or driving in a military vehicle for example. I felt that those feelings were quite accurate – as far as I can tell – especially with Sean’s background and early life.

At the end the book is going a little too fast for my taste though as everything just happens in few pages compared to the rest of the story. Due to that, I sometimes had the feeling that some situations seemed a little unrealistic even though it could totally be possible for Sean to do those things (I actually have too little knowledge of these matters to tell).

Overall though, I really enjoyed the book and the story and the characters, even if there is not too much information about some of the side characters revealed.


Author: Cinda Williams Chima

Pages: 535

ISBN: 978-0-06-245490-4

Series: Shattered Realms #1

Genre: Fantasy

Ash sets out on a journey on which he wants to take revenge of the bad things that happened to his home the people he loves by the king of Arden. As the son of the queen of the Fells, Adrian sul’Han feels he has the obligation to help his people regain their freedom.

After a series of murder, he trains to be a healer at the academy at Oden’s Ford when he finally sees a chance to get close to the king of Arden and kill him so the suffering can end. Plotting his move, he discovers that the king has plans on his own which include a girl with a magemark, Jenna.

As Jenna is as unwilling to part of the plans of the king, Ash is full of hatred for the man and so they have to work together to escape and maybe turn the tides in the war between Arden and the Fells.


As this is the companion series to the ‘Seven Realms’ series, this was a no brainer for me as I devoured the original series within less than one week. And this book did not disappoint as well. I actually wished I would not have picked it up before the series was over, just like with the ‘Seven Realms’ because I just NEED to know how everything turns out!

I just love the world that the author build and the characters are all just so easy to fall in love with. I could even do this – to some extend – with the bad ones. And she makes me care for the protagonists in a way that I really truly care what happens to them, I have to spot reading for a while after one of those events just because I have to get over the fact that I cannot hear their voice or story anymore.

Aside from that, which was just generally about the – in my eyes – greatness of the author, I find it really hard to write something about a book that I have not one single think I did not like about. It’s always the things you don’t like that make it easy to write anything really productive, yet I will try my very best.

What I liked about Ash is that he, in some ways, is still a little naïve in his actions and believes, I mean he is still quite young. But he can also take the lead and make difficult decisions. He just seems as such well rounded character, which also applies to Jenna, the other main protagonist of the story. Hiding who she is since a very young age, she is acutely aware that she has to be extra careful all the time and mistakes could potentially be deadly. But still, she is fighting against those that are responsible everything and is not willing to give in – she is determined to find a way to make it right. But also all the side characters that appear are real people and not just having a role because it is convenient for the story. And again, some of the bad people seem to not be so bad at all but just because the somehow have to be or were raised under certain circumstances.

I also like the world and that the story is centring on a different part of the world than in the ‘Seven Realms’ series and there is more to explore about the different places the story takes place in. And it’s so well described, my mind just expanded the map I already had of the world in my head. And it all fit so well together, the original picture was somewhat getting completed further and I hope for so much more to explore in the next books.

In the end, there is another thing I found that made me smile and overall content and rounded up everything I already thought about this piece of writing. It’s an unspectacular quote. It’s not poetic or anything but it is one of the reasons I like the character(s) so much:

“I guess it was the rain or the wind,” he said finally, thinking, It’s never the rain or the wind when you want it to be the rain or the wind.

Finishing, it will always be a mystery even for myself why it took my so long to read it, I mean it was published early this year and it took me till late summer?!