Thursday, January 19, 2017

Mini-reviews: Pottermore Presents #1, #2, and #3

Short Stories from Hogwarts of Heroism, Hardship, and Dangerous Hobbies (Pottermore #1) by J.K. Rowling
Rating: 4.75 stars
Goodreads Rating: 4.21 stars
Source: Purchased
Buy the Book: Amazon
Summary: "‘Minerva was the Roman goddess of warriors and wisdom. William McGonagall is celebrated as the worst poet in British history. There was something irresistible to me about his name, and the idea that such a brilliant woman might be a distant relative of the buffoonish McGonagall.’ – J.K. Rowling

Pottermore Presents is a collection of J.K. Rowling’s writing from the Pottermore archives: short reads originally featured on with some exclusive new additions. These eBooks, with writing curated by Pottermore, will take you beyond the Harry Potter stories as J.K. Rowling reveals her inspiration, intricate details of characters’ lives and surprises from the wizarding world.

These stories of heroism, hardship and dangerous hobbies profile two of the Harry Potter stories’ most courageous and iconic characters: Minerva McGonagall and Remus Lupin. J.K. Rowling also gives us a peek behind the closed curtains of Sybill Trelawney’s life, and you’ll encounter the reckless, magical-beast-loving Silvanus Kettleburn along the way."

Review: The Potterverse is vast and rich, but only seldom are the moments when whole essays of knowledge come from The Queen herself.  I loved reading about the backstories of these beloved characters, each of whom contribute greatly to the series, but about whom we know very little outside how they impact Harry himself.  I was charmed.  It was so wonderful to get so much from Rowling, and it was a great way to get back into the wizarding world before seeing Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them.  Great, magical fun!

Review in a GIF:

Bottom Line: If you are a fan of the series, this will be a warm, enchanting walk through Potter nostalgia.  

Short Stories from Hogwarts of Power, Politics, and Pesky Poltergeists (Pottermore #2) by J.K. Rowling
Rating: 4.5 stars
Goodreads Rating: 4.2 stars
Source: Purchased
Buy the Book: Amazon
Summary: "No Muggle Prime Minister has ever set foot in the Ministry of Magic, for reasons most succinctly summed up by ex-Minister Dugald McPhail (term of office 1858-1865): “their puir wee braines couldnae cope wi’ it.”’ – J.K. Rowling
Pottermore Presents is a collection of J.K. Rowling’s writing: short reads originally featured on with some exclusive new additions. These eBooks, with writing curated by Pottermore, will take you beyond the Harry Potter stories as J.K. Rowling reveals her inspiration, intricate details of characters’ lives and surprises from the wizarding world.

These stories of power, politics and pesky poltergeists give you a glimpse into the darker side of the wizarding world, revealing the ruthless roots of Professor Umbridge, the lowdown on the Ministers for Magic and the history of the wizarding prison Azkaban. You will also delve deeper into Horace Slughorn’s early years as Potions master at Hogwarts - and his acquaintance with one Tom Marvolo Riddle."

Review: I loved every word.  These essays are a joy.  I knocked off half a star because I still have so many questions about Peeves that his chapter didn't answer, which was frustrating.  Nevertheless, I had such fun reading these.  If you're a fan, READ THEM.  It will delight you.

Review in a GIF:

Bottom Line: What more can I say?  This was such a delight to read.  If you're a big Potter fan, this will almost certainly make you fall in love with the Potterverse all over again.

Hogwarts: An Incomplete and Unreliable Guide (Pottermore #3) by J.K. Rowling
Rating: 4.75 stars
Goodreads Rating: 4.21 stars
Source: Purchased
Buy the Book: Amazon
Summary: "‘The Ministry of Magic felt strongly, however, that to construct an additional wizarding station in the middle of London would stretch even the Muggles’ notorious determination not to notice magic when it was exploding in front of their faces.’ – J.K. Rowling
Pottermore Presents is a collection of J.K. Rowling’s writing: short reads originally featured on These eBooks, with writing curated by Pottermore, will take you beyond the Harry Potter stories as J.K. Rowling reveals her inspiration, intricate details of characters’ lives and surprises from the wizarding world.

Hogwarts An Incomplete and Unreliable Guide takes you on a journey to Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. You’ll venture into the Hogwarts grounds, become better acquainted with its more permanent residents, learn more about lessons and discover secrets of the castle . . . all at the turn of a page."

Review: What can I say that I haven't already said... These booklets were just delightful.  They were enchanting and fun and magical and full of Jo's signature humor and insight.  I had such fun with these.  I feel a reread coming on!

Review in a GIF:
harry potter applause maggie smith

Bottom Line: In case you weren't aware from everything written above, I really loved these essays.  Highly recommended!
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Tuesday, January 17, 2017

Mini-Reviews: Furiously Happy by Jenny Lawson; The Beauty of Darkness by Mary E. Pearson; The Rose & The Dagger by Renee Ahdieh

Furiously Happy by Jenny Lawson
Rating: 4 stars
Goodreads Rating: 3.93 stars
Source: Library
Buy the Book: Amazon
Summary: "In LET'S PRETEND THIS NEVER HAPPENED, Jenny Lawson baffled readers with stories about growing up the daughter of a taxidermist. In her new book, FURIOUSLY HAPPY, Jenny explores her lifelong battle with mental illness. A hysterical, ridiculous book about crippling depression and anxiety? That sounds like a terrible idea. And terrible ideas are what Jenny does best.

According to Jenny: "Some people might think that being 'furiously happy' is just an excuse to be stupid and irresponsible and invite a herd of kangaroos over to your house without telling your husband first because you suspect he would say no since he's never particularly liked kangaroos. And that would be ridiculous because no one would invite a herd of kangaroos into their house. Two is the limit. I speak from personal experience. My husband says that none is the new limit. I say he should have been clearer about that before I rented all those kangaroos."

"Most of my favorite people are dangerously fucked-up but you'd never guess because we've learned to bare it so honestly that it becomes the new normal. Like John Hughes wrote in The Breakfast Club, 'We're all pretty bizarre. Some of us are just better at hiding it.' Except go back and cross out the word 'hiding.'"

Jenny's first book, LET'S PRETEND THIS NEVER HAPPENED, was ostensibly about family, but deep down it was about celebrating your own weirdness. FURIOUSLY HAPPY is a book about mental illness, but under the surface it's about embracing joy in fantastic and outrageous ways-and who doesn't need a bit more of that?"

ReviewRaw, honest, brave, and so, so freaking funny. I love her dedication to live happily, smack in the face of her demons that are working so hard to crush her. Recommended* to anyone with a mental illness, and to anyone who knows someone with a mental illness. You will recognize so much of yourself/your loved ones in these pages. These stories will inspire you to live fearlessly, weirdly, and furiously, but most importantly, to just live.

(*Unless you are sensitive to language, in which case I'd definitely skip this one. I also give caution to those who, like me, have a bizarrely strong dislike for taxidermy. I liked it anyway, but all the dead animals made me majorly cringe.)

Review in a GIF

kangaroo scratching guitar hero funnys strumming

Bottom Line: I was so inspired by her commitment to be happy in spite of her mental illness (and maybe to spite her mental illness).  This book made me laugh and want to live more fully today.  To hell with mental illness.  That being said, I could have done without the taxidermy because gross.  And the level of crass was a bit much for my preference.

The Beauty of Darkness (The Remnant Chronicles #3 of 3) by Mary E. Pearson
Rating: 4.25 stars
Goodreads Rating: 4.25 stars
Source: Library
Buy the Book: Amazon
Summary: "Lia has survived Venda—but so has a great evil bent on the destruction of Morrighan. And only Lia can stop it.

With war on the horizon, Lia has no choice but to assume her role as First Daughter, as soldier—as leader. While she struggles to reach Morrighan and warn them, she finds herself at cross-purposes with Rafe and suspicious of Kaden, who has hunted her down.

In this conclusion to the Remnant Chronicles trilogy, traitors must be rooted out, sacrifices must be made, and impossible odds must be overcome as the future of every kingdom hangs in the balance."

ReviewI was happy with the way this series ended, but thought this book alone could have used a bit more of an individual arc. That being said, I was impressed with Lia's fortitude and resilience, and really came to like some of the minor characters too. The Komizar is really a fantastic villain, though this book in the series focuses more on some of the other minor villains.  The use of stories and traditions are really well done here.  And I loved the role of the "gift" in the story. I kind of wished I had read these books back to back because they build heavily on each other and don't you leave with with much breathing space. So the fact that I had forgotten a few things since I read the last book (a year ago) was problematic. But once I regained my footing I had a great time with this novel. It was a compelling story with a heroine you can really root for.

Review in a GIF:
Playboy Fragrances happy excited nice clapping

Bottom Line: A really solid series with intriguing characters and a unique world.  I'm jealous of all of you who can now read the whole series back to back without waiting. Recommended!

The Rose & The Dagger (The Wrath & The Dawn #2 of 2) by Renee Ahdieh
Rating: 2.75 stars
Goodreads Rating: 4.22 stars
Source: Library
Buy the Book: Amazon
Summary: "The darker the sky, the brighter the stars.

In a land on the brink of war, Shahrzad is forced from the arms of her beloved husband, the Caliph of Khorasan. She once thought Khalid a monster—a merciless killer of wives, responsible for immeasurable heartache and pain—but as she unraveled his secrets, she found instead an extraordinary man and a love she could not deny. Still, a curse threatens to keep Shazi and Khalid apart forever.

Now she’s reunited with her family, who have found refuge in the desert, where a deadly force is gathering against Khalid—a force set on destroying his empire and commanded by Shazi’s spurned childhood sweetheart. Trapped between loyalties to those she loves, the only thing Shazi can do is act. Using the burgeoning magic within her as a guide, she strikes out on her own to end both this terrible curse and the brewing war once and for all. But to do it, she must evade enemies of her own to stay alive.

The saga that began with The Wrath and the Dawn takes its final turn as Shahrzad risks everything to find her way back to her one true love again."

Review: Can I just take a moment to say how much I dislike the duology trend?  Seriously, book world, duologies are not a thing.  It's either a stand-alone, or a series.  And two books does not a series make.  It's one story, ripped in half, and sold in two parts in order to make more money.  It's irritating and unnecessary and stop please.

ANYWAY.  This book wasn't actually its own book, with a hook, rising action, climax, and denoument.  It was a continuation of its predecessor.  It failed to shine as much as the first in every way.  But it still managed to sparkle a bit in places.  It didn't get to be compulsively readable until the last 20%, which I enjoyed immensely, but the first 80% was a struggle.  An unnecessary struggle, since I would have enjoyed it much more had I just come off reading The Wrath & The Dawn, instead of waiting a year to get to the second half.  This could have been so much better if it were condensed and sold together with the first half as one book.  Its predecessor was so promising.  Sigh.

Review in a GIF:
game of thrones hbo annoyed ugh eye roll

Bottom Line: A disappointing conclusion, mostly because this story was obviously (poorly) cut in half in order to make money.  Also because the first one was so good.  This one was okay, but okay doesn't cut it with this series. 

Tuesday, November 22, 2016

Mini-reviews: Morning Star by Pierce Brown; When by Victoria Laurie; Fairest by Marissa Meyer

Morning Star (Red Rising #3) by Pierce Brown
Rating: 3.75 stars
Goodreads Rating: 4.5 stars
Source: Library
Buy the Book: Amazon
Summary: "Darrow would have lived in peace, but his enemies brought him war. The Gold overlords demanded his obedience, hanged his wife, and enslaved his people. But Darrow is determined to fight back. Risking everything to transform himself and breach Gold society, Darrow has battled to survive the cutthroat rivalries that breed Society’s mightiest warriors, climbed the ranks, and waited patiently to unleash the revolution that will tear the hierarchy apart from within.

Finally, the time has come.

But devotion to honor and hunger for vengeance run deep on both sides. Darrow and his comrades-in-arms face powerful enemies without scruple or mercy. Among them are some Darrow once considered friends. To win, Darrow will need to inspire those shackled in darkness to break their chains, unmake the world their cruel masters have built, and claim a destiny too long denied—and too glorious to surrender."

ReviewI think too much time passed from when I read the first two books until I started this one. I had forgotten a lot and didn't feel very connected to the characters. I figured my memory would refresh as I read, but... it didn't really. This book is action packed, which is normally a good thing, but I found myself more drawn to the quieter moments: little conversations between Sevro and Darrow; Moments of forgiveness or acceptance; pretty much any scene with Cassius; ... and that about covers the quiet scenes. The more I read the more engrossed I became, happily, but it took me a good long time to get there. I ended up skimming a good chunk of the battles because my stomach was not agreeing with them, which is too bad because I think I missed out on some fine plotting. I was satisfied with the ending, which was a huge relief since I wasn't sure that was a possibility.  This whole series is pretty brutal.  Though this story was maybe more bitter than sweet, I am glad I saw it through.  And I'm just as glad that it's over.

Review in a GIF:
relief phew

Bottom Line: A solid conclusion to an exhilarating series.  The level of crass and violence was a little above what I'd prefer, but I'm glad I stuck it out. 

When by Victoria Laurie
Rating: 4.75 stars
Goodreads Rating: 4.14 stars
Source: Library
Buy the Book: Amazon
Summary: "Maddie Fynn is a shy high school junior, cursed with an eerie intuitive ability: she sees a series of unique digits hovering above the foreheads of each person she encounters. Her earliest memories are marked by these numbers, but it takes her father’s premature death for Maddie and her family to realize that these mysterious digits are actually death dates, and just like birthdays, everyone has one.

Forced by her alcoholic mother to use her ability to make extra money, Maddie identifies the quickly approaching death date of one client's young son, but because her ability only allows her to see the when and not the how, she’s unable to offer any more insight. When the boy goes missing on that exact date, law enforcement turns to Maddie.

Soon, Maddie is entangled in a homicide investigation, and more young people disappear and are later found murdered. A suspect for the investigation, a target for the murderer, and attracting the attentions of a mysterious young admirer who may be connected to it all, Maddie's whole existence is about to be turned upside down. Can she right things before it's too late?"

Review: This book was my favorite surprise of the year.  I picked it up from the library on a whim, not even expecting to read more than a few pages, but I couldn't have been more wrong.  It hooked me from the very beginning and I blew through the whole thing really quickly.  This book is a really fantastic mystery/thriller!  I don't usually reach for paranormal books anymore - I got a little over-saturated and needed other genres - but this book reminded me why I liked them in the first place.  Maddie feels real, which makes her wisdom and her bravery all the more impressive.  The plot was almost perfect.  I certainly didn't see the end coming.  This book came so, so close to five stars. Suspenseful, exciting, and satisfying. Definitely reach for this one next time you need a who-dun-it.

Review in a GIF:
dance crazy happy dance gru done with finals

Bottom Line: I wish more people knew about this book - it's a suspenseful and compelling thriller, and I bet you a dollar you won't guess the mystery's grand reveal.

Fairest by Marissa Meyer
Rating: 3.5 stars
Goodreads Rating: 4.03 stars
Source: Library
Buy the Book: Amazon
Summary: "In this stunning bridge book between Cress and Winter in the bestselling Lunar Chronicles, Queen Levana’s story is finally told.

Mirror, mirror on the wall,
Who is the fairest of them all?

Fans of the Lunar Chronicles know Queen Levana as a ruler who uses her “glamour” to gain power. But long before she crossed paths with Cinder, Scarlet, and Cress, Levana lived a very different story – a story that has never been told . . . until now. 

Marissa Meyer spins yet another unforgettable tale about love and war, deceit and death. This extraordinary book includes full-color art and an excerpt from Winter, the next book in the Lunar Chronicles series."

Review: I liked the Lunar Chronicles so much that I read this novella.  I think this is only the second novella I've ever read.  And while it was fun to be back in this world, I was reminded why I'm not particularly interested in novellas... they're just not as complete or as clever as I want them to be.  And I missed the humor that is so abundant in Meyer's other work.  This story made me feel badly for Levanna, but also frustrated that there weren't more checks and balances in place to prevent all the atrocities done during her reign, and the reigns preceding her.  All those poor people... especially Evret and Winter.  This novella is basically one giant cautionary tale of why it's a bad idea to have delusional people in positions of power.  AHEM.

Review in a GIF: 
film 90s pretty wink blonde

Bottom Line: Read it if you already love The Lunar Chronicles.  It won't make you love it more, but the greater context is interesting.

Thursday, November 17, 2016

Review: Truly Madly Guilty by Liane Moriarty

Truly Madly Guilty by Liane Moriarty
Rating: 3 stars
Goodreads Rating: 3.57 stars
Source: Library
Buy the Book: Amazon
Summary: "Six responsible adults. Three cute kids. One small dog. It’s just a normal weekend. What could possibly go wrong?

Sam and Clementine have a wonderful, albeit, busy life: they have two little girls, Sam has just started a new dream job, and Clementine, a cellist, is busy preparing for the audition of a lifetime. If there’s anything they can count on, it’s each other.

Clementine and Erika are each other’s oldest friends. A single look between them can convey an entire conversation. But theirs is a complicated relationship, so when Erika mentions a last minute invitation to a barbecue with her neighbors, Tiffany and Vid, Clementine and Sam don’t hesitate. Having Tiffany and Vid’s larger than life personalities there will be a welcome respite.

Two months later, it won’t stop raining, and Clementine and Sam can’t stop asking themselves the question: What if we hadn’t gone?

In Truly Madly Guilty, Liane Moriarty takes on the foundations of our lives: marriage, sex, parenthood, and friendship. She shows how guilt can expose the fault lines in the most seemingly strong relationships, how what we don’t say can be more powerful than what we do, and how sometimes it is the most innocent of moments that can do the greatest harm."

Review: You guys, I WAS BORED WHILE READING A MORIARTY BOOK.  This has never happened to me before.  Perhaps my expectations were too high, but this one just didn't reach that level of amazing that I've come to expect from her.  It just wasn't as funny or as charming or as tightly spun as I know Moriarty is capable of.

The mystery wasn't that difficult to figure out either.  And the whole first half of the novel really dragged.  I was bored!!  Did I mention that I was bored?  Because I was.  Bored.  At no point did I feel that compulsion to keep reading.  I cared more for Clementine's audition than for any of the relationships between characters, and that's usually what pulls me in: the relationships.  I thought all the relationships were toxic.  Instead of being fascinated at how we all have such goodness and such blind spots and somehow make each other better despite all the crap we all deal with... instead I just wanted everyone in this story to call it a day and go their separate ways.  Including myself.

So I spent a lot of the novel being turned off and let down.  But still... Moriarty's worst is still a whole lot better than most other people's best.

Review in a GIF:
bored boring music video britney spears

Bottom Line
: Maybe my least favorite Moriarty.  But it's Moriarty, so I forgive her.

Wednesday, November 16, 2016

Review: The Bollywood Bride by Sonali Dev

The Bollywood Bride by Sonali Dev
Rating: 3 stars
Goodreads Rating: 3.54 Stars
Source: Purchased
Buy the Book: Amazon
Summary: "Ria Parkar is Bollywood's favorite Ice Princess--beautiful, poised, and scandal-proof--until one impulsive act threatens to expose her destructive past. Traveling home to Chicago for her cousin's wedding offers a chance to diffuse the coming media storm and find solace in family, food, and outsized celebrations that are like one of her vibrant movies come to life. But it also means confronting Vikram Jathar. 

Ria and Vikram spent childhood summers together, a world away from Ria's exclusive boarding school in Mumbai. Their friendship grew seamlessly into love--until Ria made a shattering decision. As far as Vikram is concerned, Ria sold her soul for stardom and it's taken him years to rebuild his life. But beneath his pent-up anger, their bond remains unchanged. And now, among those who know her best, Ria may find the courage to face the secrets she's been guarding for everyone else's benefit--and a chance to stop acting and start living. 

Rich with details of modern Indian-American life, here is a warm, sexy, and witty story of love, family, and the difficult choices that arise in the name of both."

ReviewThis book made me crave Indian food so badly. I loved everything Indian about this story: the colors, the clothes, the traditions, the family dynamics, and the FOOD.  Oh my gosh, the food.  I like Indian food anyway, but WOW this book gave me some serious cravings.

The characters themselves were fine, though they didn't really stand out to me. Ria was frustratingly uncommunicative, but she had her reasons.  It is clear from the beginning that Ria and Vikram have a lot of baggage to overcome, and most of the book is about their journey finding themselves and finding out whether or not they really belong together.  I appreciated that their story wasn't rushed, but never felt bogged down.  The pacing was just right.  I appreciate a good romance, so long as it isn't cheesy.  This, being Bollywood, certainly has its cheesy moments.  And the characters, while distinct and unique, weren't exactly lovable.  However, it was a fun, quick read, and I hoped Ria and Vikram had a happy ending.  You'll have to read it yourself to find out whether they do.  :)

In conclusion, the story was just okay, but the Indian elements made up for it.

Review in a GIF:
bollywood kajol kareena kapoor hrithik roshan amitabh bachchan
I am one of the above people, depending on what element of the book you're talking about.

Bottom Line: If you're in the mood for romance then read it on a beach somewhere.  Then go eat massive quantities of Indian food.

Thursday, September 29, 2016

Review: Deviants of Giftborn (Etherya #1) by Zuri Amarcya

Deviants of Giftborn (Etherya #1) by Zuri Amarcya
Rating: 3.75 stars
Source: Copy provided by the author
Buy the Book: Amazon 
Summary: "Better deviant than dead. 

Raised among hostile, violent beggars, Nemma longs for the safety of her family and a better quality of life. She uses trickery and brute force to survive, but living among the desperate has its risks. When she inadvertently kills two powerful magiens, with a power she didn’t realize she had, she is forced to flee and seek help. This sets in motion a chase that will have a fatal end for her if she is unable to escape the all-powerful Sovereign Order. 

Ambitious merchant, Clisantha, manipulates others to work her way up the social hierarchy in Torak City. She uses her illegal powers to preserve her status, scrutinize her devious Lord stepfather and meddle with a mysterious magien. However, when hidden memories of her long-deceased father resurface, she becomes absorbed in the mystery surrounding his death, forcing her to put herself, her beliefs and everything she has strived for at risk. 

Nemma and Clisantha’s lives collide and revolve as they fall deeper into the secrets of their past, revealing a truth far more devastating than they could ever have imagined. 
Deviants of Giftborn is the first installment of The Etherya Series, a thrilling epic fantasy saga exploring the cost of consequence, justice and power. If you like compelling action, determined heroines, and magical societies, Zuri Amarcya’s adventurous and enchanting tale is perfect for you."

Review: First off, I want to thank the author for forwarding a copy of her novel to me.  Thank you!  I also want to reassure my readers that this has had no impact on my review.   On to the review!

The first thing that stood out to me is the world building.  This is a very imaginative world, complete with a competitive economy, class struggles, corruption, and misogyny, and with an original and interesting magic system.  It reminded me a little bit of Sanderson's Mistborn series, actually, and I think fans of that series would do well to look into this series as well.  Though I have to be honest, I can tell that this world was better defined in the author's mind than in mine.  I got the gist, but wished it was less fuzzy overall. And the misogynistic elements were frustrating.

About the characters, I noticed that the female characters covered a wide range in personality, morality, looks, habits, strengths, and weaknesses.  Brava!  I didn't know how to pronounce a lot of the names, but I appreciated the range in characterization. 

There are themes of friendship and choice and power, but they aren't explored too widely. Maybe in the next book.  I don't really take issue with this though.  It bothers me a lot more when books have an Agenda.  This book was just trying to tell a story.  Much more enjoyable than an Agenda Book.

Ms. Amarcya does a great job with her action scenes.  There were real moments of adventure and excitement.  The chapters between the action scenes were quite slow, alas.

This book tells this story through rotating perspectives from two very different people, and I never was confused as to which protagonist's head I was in. (Yay!)  The two stories don't connect or build on each other very well, however. I often felt like I was reading two different books.  

And while we're talking about the two protagonists' stories, I have another grievance.  The blurb mentions that the two protagonists lives "collide and revolve as they fall deeper into the secrets of their past," which is true, but I think is a little bit misleading.  I was expecting them two to connect much sooner than they did.  Truly, the amount of time Nemma and Clisantha spend in each others' presence is extremely small.  Perhaps it was a case of mismatched expectations, but from the blurb I thought they two would become a dynamic duo to overthrow the injustices around them.  In reality, their two lives rarely touched.  I liked both characters and enjoyed reading both stories, but I didn't think their respective stories flowed together the way they should have.

All in all, it's a fun new fantasy story, if not completely polished.  I'd give it a go if you like fantasy and are looking for a new series to entertain you.  It ends on a cliffhanger, though, so don't expect much closure!
Review in a GIF:
obama nod nodding not bad

Bottom Line: An entertaining new fantasy series, though it's got a few issues.  Still fun.

Tuesday, September 27, 2016

Mini-reviews: The Name of the Wind by Patrick Rothfuss and The Wise Man's Fear by Patrick Rothfuss

The Name of the Wind (Kingkiller Chronicles #1) by Patrick Rothfuss
Rating: 3 stars
Source: Library
Buy the Book: Amazon
Summary: "Told in Kvothe's own voice, this is the tale of the magically gifted young man who grows to be the most notorious wizard his world has ever seen. 

The intimate narrative of his childhood in a troupe of traveling players, his years spent as a near-feral orphan in a crime-ridden city, his daringly brazen yet successful bid to enter a legendary school of magic, and his life as a fugitive after the murder of a king form a gripping coming-of-age story unrivaled in recent literature. 

A high-action story written with a poet's hand, The Name of the Wind is a masterpiece that will transport readers into the body and mind of a wizard."

ReviewThis one snuck up on me. I almost DNFed about twenty times, and then I found myself requesting its sequel from the library. It's a slow burn for sure, with the first 150 pages being exceptionally slow. And it ended rather abruptly without any real conclusion. But some of the scenes were real lessons in masterful writing. And Qvothe is such a likable rogue.  While I ended up liking much of the book by the end, I'm still torn on my feelings for it as a whole.

Review in a GIF:
confused larry david decision conflicted

The Wise Man's Fear (Kingkiller Chronicles #2) by Patrick Rothfuss
Rating: 4.5 stars
Source: Library
Buy the Book: Amazon
Summary: "There are three things all wise men fear: the sea in storm, a night with no moon, and the anger of a gentle man.

My name is Kvothe.  I have stolen princesses back from sleeping barrow kings. I burned down the town of Trehon. I have spent the night with Felurian and left with both my sanity and my life. I was expelled from the University at a younger age than most people are allowed in. I tread paths by moonlight that others fear to speak of during day. I have talked to Gods, loved women, and written songs that make the minstrels weep.  You may have heard of me.

So begins the tale of a hero told from his own point of view — a story unequaled in fantasy literature. Now in The Wise Man's Fear, an escalating rivalry with a powerful member of the nobility forces Kvothe to leave the University and seek his fortune abroad. Adrift, penniless, and alone, he travels to Vintas, where he quickly becomes entangled in the politics of courtly society. While attempting to curry favor with a powerful noble, Kvothe uncovers an assassination attempt, comes into conflict with a rival arcanist, and leads a group of mercenaries into the wild, in an attempt to solve the mystery of who (or what) is waylaying travelers on the King's Road.

All the while, Kvothe searches for answers, attempting to uncover the truth about the mysterious Amyr, the Chandrian, and the death of his parents. Along the way, Kvothe is put on trial by the legendary Adem mercenaries, is forced to reclaim the honor of the Edema Ruh, and travels into the Fae realm. There he meets Felurian, the faerie woman no man can resist, and who no man has ever survived...until Kvothe.

In The Wise Man's Fear
, Kvothe takes his first steps on the path of the hero and learns how difficult life can be when a man becomes a legend in his own time."

ReviewI really enjoyed this high fantasy. Qvothe is a really spectacular character. I was engrossed in his adventures, and enjoyed speculating about the mysteries. I am concerned about how past-Qvothe turns into present-Qvothe. I hope this isn't a tragedy in the end, but all the times present day Qvothe insists that this isn't a happy story has me worried. The thing I am the most concerned about, however, is that there is no release date for book three yet. This is a complex story with a large cast. Hurry up and release the last book before I forget anything!!

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