Review: The Last of August by Brittany Cavallaro

the last of augustRating: 3/5 owl hoots

Published: February 14 2017

Number of pages: 316

Format: hardcover

Publisher: Katherine Tegan Books

Genre: mystery, contemporary

Audience: young adult

Get it at: Chapters Indigo

Shelve it at: Goodreads

Summary:

Jamie Watson and Charlotte Holmes are spending their winter vacation in Europe to get away for the semester that almost got them killed. But Charlotte isn’t the only Holmes with secrets as the mood in the Holmes Sussex estate is intense. On top of that, Watson and Holmes might be more then just friends, but Charlotte’s past remains a wall between them.

Charlotte’s uncle Leander suddenly goes missing disturbing the peace, and with clues that he was involved in a case dealing with an art heist in Europe, Charlotte and Jamie are off again. This time to Berlin where they meet August Moriarty (presumed dead by most people), and his entire family accused for ripping off famous paintings for years. But as they follow the underground art scene in Berlin and the art houses in Prague, Holmes and Watson realize this case is bigger than they can handle and much more complicated.Read More »

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Review; Wild Beauty by Anna-Marie McLemore

wild beautyRating: 4/5 owl hoots

Published: September 26 2017

Number of pages: 335

Format: ARC

Publisher: Feiwal and Friends

Genre: magical realism, romance, LGBTQ, fantasy

Audience: young adult

Get it at: Chapters Indigo

Shelve it at: Goodreads

Summary:

For centuries Nomeolvides women have taken care of La Pradera, the lush estate gardens that enchant guests from all over the world. But there’s a dark secret, if they fall in love their lovers vanish. But then to their surprise a boy suddenly appears in the gardens. The boy is a mystery to Estralla, the Nomeolvides girl who found him and introduced to her family. But she suddenly learns that he doesn’t even know who he is or where he came from. As Estralla tries to help Fel piece together his past, La Pradera leads the pair to deeper, darker secrets that are dangerous and magical.

An ARC was provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest reviewRead More »

Review: You Bring the Distant Near by Mitali Perkins

you bring the distant nearRating: 4/5 owl hoots

Published: September 12 2017

Number of pages: 303

Format: ARC

Publisher: Farrar Straus Giroux

Genre: contemporary, romance, feminism

Audience: young adult

Get it at: Chapters Indigo

Shelve it at: Goodreads

Summary:

Sonia and Tara are sisters struggling to fit in the life of America. Moved into Queens from London, they both find life very different from home. Girls in New York don’t hold hands or wear matching outfits to high school, and it doesn’t help that they are surrounded by nosy aunties at their apartment building. But then tragedy strikes when Sonia falls in love with a boy their mother doesn’t approve and cutting a deep wound in the Das family. This forbidden love last decades, and each Das woman decides which Bengali traditions to uphold and to leave behind, but there are some scars that take generations to heal.

An ARC was given to me by the publisher in exchange for an honest review. Read More »

Review: Girls Made of Snow and Glass by Melissa Bashardoust

girls made of snow and glassPublished: September 5, 2017

Number of pages: 372

Format: ARC

Publisher: Flatiron Books

Genre: fantasy, retellng, romance, LGBTQ

Audience: YA

Get it at: Chapters Indigo

Shelve it at: Goodreads

Summary:

At sixteen, Mina’s mother died and her vicious magician father cut out her heart and replaced it with one of glass. Her heart has never beat at all since then. When she moves into Whitespring Castle and sees its king for the first time, she forms a plan: win the king’s heart, become queen, and finally know love.

At fifteen, Lynet looks just like her late mother, and one day she discovers that a magician created her out of snow in the dead queen’s image, at her father’s order. But despite being the dead queen made flesh, Lynet would rather be like her fierce stepmother, Mina. She gets her wish when her father makes Lynet queen of the southern territories, displacing Mina. Now Mina is starting to look at Lynet with something like hatred, and Lynet must decide what to do and who to be, to win back the only mother she’s ever known.

I received an advanced reading copy from the publisher, in exchange for an honest review. Copying and editing my words is prohibited. Read More »

Why I’m on Hiatus (which I later start to ramble a bit)

How long am I on hiatus you ask?

I’m not sure

Why am I on hiatus?

Because…well there’s a story behind it which I will explain later

Are you going back to blogging?

Of course!

When are you coming back?

Still not sure.

Now here’s the story…Read More »

Review: Norse Mythology by Neil Gaiman

norse mythology by neil gaimanRating: 5/5 owl hoots

Published: February 7 2017

Number of pages: 283

Format: hardcover

Publisher:W. W. Norton & Company

Genre: fantasy, retellng, mystery, romance,  comedy

Audience: older adult

Get it at: Chapters Indigo

Shelve it at: Goodreads

Summary:

Neil Gaiman has long been inspired by ancient mythology and here, he stays true to the myths on envisioning the major Norse pantheon: Odin the All-Father, wise, daring and father to Thor, incredibly strong but not the wisest of gods. Loki, son of the giant and blood brother to Odin and a trickster and manipulator.

Gaiman fashions these stories into a novelistic arc that begins with the legend of the nine worlds and delves into the exploits of deities, dwarfs, and giants. Once when Thor’s hammer is stolen, Thor must disguise himself as a woman to steal it back. But can he succeed without his beard and immense appetite to give him away? More poignant is the tale of Kvasir in which his blood is turned into mead that infuses drinkers with poetry. The work culminates Ragnarok, the twilight of the gods and rebirth of a new time and people.

Through Gaiman’s witty prose emerge these gods with their fierce competitive natures and their susceptibility to being duped and to duping others, and their tendency to let passion ignite their actions, making theses ancient myths breathe life again.

My Review:

Neil Gaiman is one of my favourite authors sitting close to Victoria Schwab. Never have I ever been disappointed by any of his books, well there are some of his short stories that didn’t appeal to me but his novels did. So when Neil Gaiman comes out with a new book based on mythology, I immediately buy it. As a fan of Norse mythology (myself included) it didn’t surprise me that he decided to come out with this collection; he did write American Gods (now turned into a TV series) and is still one of the most weird and bizarre story I’ve read.Read More »

Review: Timekeeper by Tara Sim

timekeeper by tara simRating: 3.5/5 owl hoots

Published: November 8 2016

Number of pages: 404

Format: hardcover

Publisher: Sky Pony Prese

Genre: LGBT, romance, steampunk, fantasy

Audience: younger adult

Get it at: Chapters Indigo

Shelve it at: Goodreads

Summary:

An alternate Victorian world controlled by clocktowers where a damaged clock can fracture time, but a destroyed one could stop time completely. A young mechanic who can fix any clockwork and determined to rescue his father from a Stopped town. A series of mysterious bombings on clocktowers that could put all of England in danger. A romance that will shake the foundations of time and a boy who will do anything to risk it all.

A first book in a steampunk trilogy introducing a magical world of mythology and innovation that readers might never want to leave.

My Review:

I love reading steampunk but nowadays the genre is over saturated; we now see steampunk everywhere from YA to adult fiction and it’s almost tiring to keep up. Now when I see a new steampunk coming out that promises to be original I ask “is it really?” because we see new steampunk stories coming out that it’s really hard to promote that story as being original; most of time the story sounds the same. It takes place in Victorian England, it involves a young hero who is ahead of their time, it either has supernatural creatures and you see flying machines and dirigibles. There is also an opportunity of a romance although I haven’t read a steampunk story that had no chemistry in it. So when I heard about Timekeeper and Victoria Schwab blurbing it as “an extraordinary debut, at once familiar and utterly original” on the cover, I was hesitant. On the one hand, Victoria Schwab is my auto-favourite author but on the other, I was pretty doubtful if this was going to be an original story; as the saying goes: when you read one, you’ve read them all. Read More »

Review: Bull by David Elliott

bull by david elliottRating: 3/5 owl hoots

Published: March 28 2017

Number of pages: 200

Format: advanced reading copy

Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt for Young Readers

Genre: retelling, myth, romance, humour

Audience: younger adult

Get it at: Chapters Indigo

Shelve it at: Goodreads

Summary:

See the story of Theseus and the Minotaur in a whole new light.

(This is very short premise from Goodreads, but it also does a good job of summarizing my experience with this story in one sentence. Read on you will see what I mean)

My Review:

I received an advance reading copy from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. Any copying and editing of my words is strictly prohibited.

I requested this ARC without closely reading the premise. I remember reading the words “retelling” and “myth” and thinking that this was going to be another retelling about the famous Greek myth, Minos and the Minotaur. I absolutely love reading stories about mythologies and the Greeks have the most interesting, entertaining, and mostly horrifying myths I’ve read. So when I learned that Bull was a retelling of the Minotaur story I automatically requested it without thinking twice. By the time the ARC arrived and I flipped the first few pages I was in for a surprise.Read More »