Sea Witch by Sarah Henning

Sea Witch by Sarah HenningSea Witch by Sarah Henning
Published by HarperCollins on July 31st 2018
Genres: Fairy Tales & Folklore, Fantasy, Young Adult
Pages: 368
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The sea is a fickle witch.
She is just as likely to bestow a kiss as to steal the breath from your lips.

 

I gave myself a bit of a headache trying to rate this book. Parts of it were 2 teacups, other parts 4/4.5, so in the end I’ve settled on this. But I will say one thing: this book is probably not what you are expecting. I hope it can find the right readers.

One StarOne StarOne StarHalf a Star

If You Don’t Have Anything Nice to Say by Leila Sales

If You Don’t Have Anything Nice to Say by Leila SalesIf You Don't Have Anything Nice to Say by Leila Sales
on May 1st 2018
Pages: 336
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Before we go any further, I want to make sure you understand this: I am not a good person. If that’s important to you, to only read things by good people and about good people, where all their conflicts are unfair things that happened to them despite their pluck and kindness, then you should stop reading right now. I am not the girl for you.

 

^Heed this warning. Seriously. If you are someone who needs to like your protagonist, this book – and Sales’s books in general – are not for you. If you need books where bad actions are justly punished and all the right moral lessons are learned, this book isn’t for you. This book made me angry, made me pause, think, and question; it is not an easy book to read.

One StarOne StarOne StarHalf a Star

This Savage Song by V.E. Schwab

This Savage Song by V.E. SchwabThis Savage Song by Victoria Schwab
Published by HarperCollins on July 5th 2016
Genres: Paranormal, Young Adult
Pages: 464
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Kate Harker and August Flynn are the heirs to a divided city—a city where the violence has begun to breed actual monsters. All Kate wants is to be as ruthless as her father, who lets the monsters roam free and makes the humans pay for his protection. All August wants is to be human, as good-hearted as his own father, to play a bigger role in protecting the innocent—but he’s one of the monsters. One who can steal a soul with a simple strain of music. When the chance arises to keep an eye on Kate, who’s just been kicked out of her sixth boarding school and returned home, August jumps at it. But Kate discovers August’s secret, and after a failed assassination attempt the pair must flee for their lives. In This Savage Song, Victoria Schwab creates a gritty, seething metropolis, one worthy of being compared to Gotham and to the four versions of London in her critically acclaimed fantasy for adults, A Darker Shade of Magic. Her heroes will face monsters intent on destroying them from every side—including the monsters within.

She liked the idea that there were a hundred different Kates, living a hundred different lives.
Maybe in one of them, there were no monsters.

One StarOne StarOne StarHalf a Star

The Alloy of Law by Brandon Sanderson

The Alloy of Law by Brandon SandersonThe Alloy of Law by Brandon Sanderson
Published by Gollancz on November 10th 2011
Genres: Fantasy
Pages: 325
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Centuries after the Mistborn trilogy, Scadrial is on the verge of modernity – railroads, electric street lights, and skyscrapers. Waxillium Ladrian can Push on metals with his Allomancy and use Feruchemy to become lighter or heavier at will. After 20 years in the dusty Roughs, in the city of Elendel, the new head of a noble house may need to keep his guns.

 

“The mark of a great man is one who knows when to set aside the important things in order to accomplish the vital ones.”

This book was such a fun ride!
Brandon Sanderson has become a comfort writer to me. Whenever I find myself in a reading slump or I am in that mood where I don’t feel like reading anything on my TBR, I can always count on Sanderson to produce something that I will greatly enjoy.
The Alloy of Law is a continuation/spin-off series of the Mistborn trilogy and takes place in the same world. Although it is set hundreds of years in the future and follows different characters, you still need to read Mistborn before diving into this one.

One StarOne StarOne StarHalf a Star

Scarlet by Marissa Meyer

Scarlet by Marissa MeyerScarlet (The Lunar Chronicles Book 2) by Marissa Meyer
Published by Penguin UK on February 7th 2013
Genres: Young Adult, Science Fiction
Pages: 464
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This is not the fairytale you remember. But it's one you won't forget.SCARLET BENOIT'S grandmother is missing. The police have closed her case. The only person Scarlet can turn to is Wolf, a street fighter she does not trust, but they are drawn to each other.
Meanwhile, in New Beijing, Cinder will become the Commonwealth's most wanted fugitive - when she breaks out of prison to stay one step ahead of vicious Queen Levana.
As Scarlet and Wolf expose one mystery, they encounter Cinder and a new one unravels. Together they must challenge the evil queen, who will stop at nothing to make Prince Kai her husband, her king, her prisoner . . .

“She did not know that the wolf was a wicked sort of animal, and she was not afraid of him.”

One StarOne StarOne StarHalf a Star

Starflight by Melissa Landers

Starflight by Melissa LandersStarflight by Melissa Landers
Published by Disney Book Group on February 2nd 2016
Genres: Romance, Science Fiction, Young Adult
Pages: 309
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Solara Brooks needs a fresh start, someplace where nobody cares about the engine grease beneath her fingernails or the felony tattoos across her knuckles. The outer realm may be lawless, but it's not like the law has ever been on her side. Still, off-world travel doesn't come cheap; Solara is left with no choice but to indenture herself in exchange for passage to the outer realm. She just wishes it could have been to anyone besides Doran Spaulding, the rich, pretty-boy quarterback who made her life miserable in school. The tables suddenly turn when Doran is framed for conspiracy on Earth, and Solara cons him into playing the role of her servant on board the Banshee, a ship manned by an eccentric crew with their own secrets. Given the price on both Doran and Solara's heads, it may just be the safest place in the universe. It's been a long time since Solara has believed in anyone, and Doran is the last person she expected to trust. But when the Banshee's dangerous enemies catch up with them, Solara and Doran must come together to protect the ship that has become their home—and the eccentric crew that feels like family.

“I guess we’re stuck with each other.”
“Guess so,” she said. “Too bad you make lousy tea.”

One StarOne StarOne StarHalf a Star

An Infinite Number of Parallel Universes by Randy Ribay

I received this book for free from the author in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

An Infinite Number of Parallel Universes by Randy RibayAn Infinite Number of Parallel Universes by Randy Ribay
Published by Merit Press on October 16th 2015
Genres: Contemporary, Friendship, Gay, Romance, Young Adult
Pages: 240
Format: ARC, digital ARC
Source: the author
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As their senior year approaches, four diverse friends joined by their weekly Dungeons & Dragons game struggle to figure out real life. Archie's trying to cope with the lingering effects of his parents' divorce, Mari's considering an opportunity to contact her biological mother, Dante's working up the courage to come out to his friends, and Sam's clinging to a failing relationship. The four eventually embark on a cross-country road trip in an attempt to solve--or to avoid--their problems.
Told in the narrative style of Akira Kurosawa's RASHOMAN, AN INFINITE NUMBER OF PARALLEL UNIVERSES is at turns geeky, funny, and lyrical as it tells a story about that time in life when friends need each other to become more than just people that hang out.

You know those books that are obviously flawed, but you still end up enjoying immensely? An Infinite Number of Parallel Universes is one of those books. It wasn’t a perfect book by any means, but it’s the kind of book that’ll bring a smile to your face on a rainy (or sunny) day.
One of the main things that’ll make you smile, of course, is the quirky cast of characters. Archie, Mari, Dante and Sam are all huge gaming geeks, with different and totally distinct personalities. They’re totally diverse physically and in terms of background as well–bonus points!
If there’s one thing they have in common, though, it’s that they’re all realistically portrayed. Each character has their own problems, insecurities, and little things that make them happy. They all have their lives outside of their little gaming circle, lives that they’re not always happy and confident with. But they try really hard to cope.
The best part about them is that they all grew throughout the course of the book. To be honest, at first I wanted to hit most of the characters upside the head at the beginning–Archie and Sam especially were huge assholes–but as we got to know them, I understood them better. They understood themselves better, too.
The characters’ relationship grew along with them, too. At first, it’s pretty obvious that the characters aren’t really close, but after they had their little road trip together, they grew into a pretty tight group of four quirky kids. (Although the romance grew in the opposite direction for me. I liked it more when it was just starting out.)
I did have a few gripes about the book, though. For one, the writing was just a tad too simple for me. Sentence structures hardly had any variation, and it made me feel disconnected from the story at some points. While I knew I understood a lot of what the characters felt, I didn’t feel them myself, you know?
The story was pretty typical, with a bit more charm and less of the “I’ve seen that before” feeling. But the lack of that feeling comes with a price–a few scenes seemed to come out of nowhere and were a bit random. At times, they bordered on unrealistic.
Overall, I’d still recommend An Infinite Number of Parallel Universes for anyone looking for a quick road-trip read about geeks and their geeky relationships.

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ONE lucky winner will receive a HARDCOVER copy of An Infinite Number of Parallel Universes! This giveaway is open internationally. For full terms and conditions, check out the Rafflecopter.
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One StarOne StarOne StarHalf a Star

Death Sworn by Leah Cypress

Death Sworn by Leah CypressDeath Sworn by Leah Cypess
Published by HarperCollins on March 4th 2014
Genres: Young Adult
Pages: 352
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When a young sorceress is exiled to teach magic to a clan of assassins, she will find that secrets can be even deadlier than swords. Teen Vogue proclaimed, "It's impossible not to fall deep into the dark yet alluring world of sorcery and secret assassins." A dangerous and eerie fantasy about murder, shocking discoveries, and fiery star-crossed romance that readers of Cinda Williams Chima and Robin LaFevers won't be able to put down.
Ileni is losing her magic. And that means she's losing everything: her position as the rising star of her people, her purpose in life, and even the young man she loves. Sent to the assassins' cave hidden deep within the mountains, she expects no one will ever hear from her again. The last two sorcerers sent died within weeks of each other. Accidents? Or something more sinister? As Ileni navigates the dangers—both natural and human—of the caves, she'll discover secrets that have been kept for decades. And she'll find an ally in Sorin, the deadly young man who could be the assassins' next leader. With Sorin determined to protect her, sparks—magical and romantic—will fly. But will even he understand the choice she must make in the end?

“She might be about to die, but she didn’t have to do it cowering.”

One StarOne StarOne StarHalf a Star

Slasher Girls & Monster Boys by April Genevieve Tucholke (editor)

Slasher Girls & Monster Boys by April Genevieve Tucholke (editor)Slasher Girls & Monster Boys by Stefan Bachmann, Leigh Bardugo, Kendare Blake, A. G. Howard, Jay Kristoff, Marie Lu, Jonathan Maberry, Danielle Paige, Carrie Ryan, Megan Shepherd, Nova Ren Suma, McCormick Templeman, April Genevieve Tucholke, Cat Winters
Published by Dial Books on August 18th 2015
Genres: Horror, Young Adult
Pages: 400
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For fans of Stephen King, Neil Gaiman, Lois Duncan, and Daphne Du Maurier comes a powerhouse anthology featuring some of the best writers of YA thrillers and horror 
A host of the smartest young adult authors come together in this collection of scary stories and psychological thrillers curated by Between the Devil and the Deep Blue Sea’s April Genevieve Tucholke.
Each story draws from a classic tale or two—sometimes of the horror genre, sometimes not—to inspire something new and fresh and terrifying. There are no superficial scares here; these are stories that will make you think even as they keep you on the edge of your seat. From bloody horror to supernatural creatures to unsettling, all-too-possible realism, this collection has something for any reader looking for a thrill.

What a fantastic anthology! Loved it. Some of the stories were phenomenal and there was only one I actively disliked. Overall, I’m very impressed with how original and strange some of these stories were. I feel like the authors really dared to do something different here. Although none of these short stories truly scared me, I still found them to be creepy and eerie. If you’re in the mood for something fitting for Halloween, definitely pick this one up.

One StarOne StarOne StarHalf a Star

The Creeping by Alexandra Sirowy

The Creeping by Alexandra SirowyThe Creeping by Alexandra Sirowy
Published by Simon and Schuster on August 18th 2015
Genres: Horror, Mystery & Thriller, Young Adult
Pages: 400
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Romance, friendship, and dark, bone-chilling fear fill the pages of this summertime thriller in the spirit of Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children.
Twelve years ago Stella and Jeanie vanished while picking strawberries. Stella returned minutes later, with no memory of what happened. Jeanie was never seen or heard from again.
Now Stella is seventeen, and she’s over it. She’s the lucky one who survived, and sure, the case is still cloaked in mystery—and it’s her small town’s ugly legacy—but Stella is focused on the coming summer. She’s got a great best friend, a hookup with an irresistibly crooked smile, and two months of beach days stretching out before her.
Then along comes a corpse, a little girl who washes up in an ancient cemetery after a mudslide, and who has red hair just like Jeanie did. Suddenly memories of that haunting day begin to return, and when Stella discovers that other red-headed girls have gone missing as well, she begins to suspect that something sinister is at work.
And before the summer ends, Stella will learn the hard way that if you hunt for monsters, you will find them.

One StarOne StarOne StarHalf a Star