A Reaper at the Gates by Sabaa Tahir

A Reaper at the Gates by Sabaa TahirA Reaper at the Gates by Sabaa Tahir
Published by Penguin on June 12th 2018
Genres: Young Adult Fiction, Fantasy
Pages: 480
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“There are worse things than death,” I say. “Shall we learn about them together?”

 

When it comes to heart-racing action scenes, I cannot think of another YA author who does it better than Sabaa Tahir. She plunges you into the chaos almost immediately and once again, for the third book in a row, she keeps the drama and bloodshed coming until the very end.

One StarOne StarOne StarOne StarHalf a Star

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

A Thousand Beginnings and Endings

A Thousand Beginnings and EndingsA Thousand Beginnings and Endings Published by HarperCollins on June 26th 2018
Genres: Fantasy, Short Stories, Young Adult
Pages: 336
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This is definitely one of the better YA short story collections I have read. As with all anthologies, some stories are much stronger than others, but I enjoyed far more than I disliked. Plus, it was just so great to see the exploration of mythologies we don’t often see in the mainstream. My average rating over the fifteen stories was 3.7.

One StarOne StarOne StarOne Star

The Poppy War by R.F. Kuang

The Poppy War by R.F. KuangThe Poppy War by R. F. Kuang
Published by HarperCollins on May 1st 2018
Genres: Fantasy
Pages: 544
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“But I warn you, little warrior. The price of power is pain.”

 

Holy hell, what did I just read??

➽ A fantasy military school
➽ A rich world based on modern Chinese history
➽ Shamans and gods
➽ Detailed characterization leading to unforgettable characters
➽ Adorable, opium-smoking mentors

One StarOne StarOne StarOne StarOne Star

The Bird and the Blade by Megan Bannen

The Bird and the Blade by Megan BannenThe Bird and the Blade by Megan Bannen
Published by HarperCollins on June 5th 2018
Genres: Fantasy
Pages: 432
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“Should you fail to answer correctly each riddle by the end of seven minutes, you shall forfeit your life. Do you understand?”

 

Mongolian fantasy with ghosts and riddles, anyone?

One StarOne StarOne StarOne Star

My Plain Jane by Cynthia Hand

My Plain Jane by Cynthia HandMy Plain Jane by Cynthia HandBrodi AshtonJodi Meadows
Published by HarperCollins on June 26th 2018
Genres: Fantasy, Historical
Pages: 464
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I really wanted to love this. So badly. My Lady Jane was so so much fun when I read it last year, but I just felt like both the humour and the story were pretty bland in this book. I felt like the previous book was a hilarious historical comedy; this one was a meh Jane Eyre retelling.

One StarOne Star

The Queen of Sorrow by Sarah Beth Durst

The Queen of Sorrow by Sarah Beth DurstThe Queen of Sorrow by Sarah Beth Durst
Published by HarperCollins on May 15th 2018
Genres: Fantasy
Pages: 432
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I suppose I’ll need Jastra’s plan after all. Pity.
It would have been nice to avoid murdering anyone.

 

I have really enjoyed this series. I came to the end of The Queen of Sorrow and, aptly, felt a lot of sorrow at having to leave these characters behind. At least the author’s note promises a standalone set in the same world – in Belene this time – so I will get to return to, and explore more of, Renthia.

One StarOne StarOne StarOne Star

Furyborn by Claire Legrand

Furyborn by Claire LegrandFuryborn by Claire Legrand
on March 1st 2018
Genres: Fantasy
Pages: 512
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The one question that kept spinning around in my mind as I read Furyborn is “why should I care?” I didn’t like the characters, the story almost put me to sleep, the stakes were never high enough to get my blood pumping, and the sex scenes made me laugh (not in a good way). I dislike giving one star but there was literally nothing I enjoyed about this book.

One Star