Hey all, Dani here.
I was going to try and have this up yesterday, but I had a lot to do and I was recovering from a very busy day Saturday…and sadly I wasn’t as accomplished on the reading front as I would have liked. Instead I had a twice-delayed Mother’s Day dinner with my mom and had to run some errands and such.
Still…I did read 2.5 books during National Readathon Day.
I started the day off with The School for Good and Evil by Soman Chainani and it was actually a cute and fun read that I really enjoyed. It is a Middle Grade novel that follows two girls from the same village, Sophie and Agatha. Sophie is blond, pretty, and thinks of herself like a sweet princess, so she’s sure that she’s going to be taken to the School for Good, while she thinks her friend Agatha, who is a loner and everyone see’s her as strange and different, must obviously be going to the School for Evil. And yet, when the girls are taken, it is Agatha that is dropped into the School for Good, and Sophie finds herself in the School for Evil. Both girls are sure this is a mistake and work their hardest to try and get switched to the proper schools, but that only seems to cause more problems. I might actually try to do a longer review on this later, but I gave it a 4.5 star rating out of a possible 5 stars.
Then I jumped into The Crown’s Game by Evelyn Skye. This book just came out so I’ll do a longer review later so I don’t potential spoil anything, but it is a historical fantasy novel that takes place in Imperial Russia. It follows Vika and Nikolai, who are both enchanters, and Pasha, the prince. The basic premise is that people have forgotten about magic, thinking it the stuff of stories. But the Tsar of Russia knows that magic still exists and the time is coming where he will need an Imperial Enchanter at his side. There’s just one problem: there are two people with enchanter abilities, and that can’t last. Magic is drawn from the same source and an enchanter only has full power if they are the only one using the source. The only thing to do is to hold The Crown’s Game, a challenge of five rounds where the two enchanters compete against each other to prove they are the better enchanter. The winner will become the Imperial Enchanter and the loser will die. Things get complicated when Nikolai and Vika are drawn to each other due to their magic, but Nikolai’s best friend, Pasha, also is falling for Vika. I admit that at first I was going to go 4 stars or maybe 4.5 stars, but the last 10 chapters or so cut me emotionally and I ended up giving the book 5 stars.
So, around 9:30-10:00 pm I picked up An Ember in the Ashes by Sabaa Tahir. It’s been on my TBR for months and I figured it was time to finally read it, even if I wouldn’t be able to finish it by midnight. I did finish it yesterday, so I’ll still give my mini-review here. This story follows Laia, who is of the people known as Scholars, and Elias, who is a Martial (the ruling people). After her grandparents are killed and her brother is taken prisoner, Laia seeks out the Resistance to save her brother. They agree to do so, but only if Laia goes into Blackcliff Academy and spies on the Commandant. Elias is about to graduate from Blackcliff but all he wants to do is be free. He doesn’t agree with how they control things or treat the Scholars or anyone else. He is told by an Augur that if he doesn’t desert, if he stays, then he’ll participate in the Trials to determine the new Emperor and doing so will earn him his freedom. Things get complicated from there, with Laia and Elias being drawn to each other. I wanted to like this book much more than I did. Frankly I found the “draw” between Laia and Elias to be a bit too near to Insta Love, and I thought the connection of Elias and his best friend Helene to be much better. The story did mostly hold my interest until the end, and with the way it ended I am super curious about what will happen in the next one, but the book just didn’t blow me away. I ended up giving it 4 stars out of 5.
Well, I guess that’s it for right now. I have some more reading to get back to, so I will be back tomorrow with another post (a review of an ARC I received that I really enjoyed).