From the Earth to the Shadows | Amanda Hocking

Amanda_Hocking_FB_Cover_v4

Image result for from the earth to the shadows amanda hockingFrom the Earth to the Shadows by Amanda Hocking

Goodreads rating: 3.52

Pages: 336

Genre: Young Adult, Fantasy, Urban Fantasy, Romance

Date published: April 24th, 2018 (USA)

My rating: ★★★☆☆

Goodreads // Buy this book: Paperback

Synopsis

The epic conclusion to the thrilling Valkyrie duology by New York Times bestselling YA author Amanda Hocking, From the Earth to the Shadows.

While dealing with dark revelations about her life and her world, Malin finds herself with new allies–and new enemies. Her quest for the truth leads her to places she never thought possible, and she’s never been one to shy away from a fight. But for all her strength and determination, will it be enough to save the world before it’s too late?

About the author

Image result for amanda hockingAmanda Hocking is the author of over twenty young adult novels, including the New York Times bestselling Trylle Trilogy and Kanin Chronicles. Her love of pop culture and all things paranormal influence her writing. She spends her time in Minnesota, taking care of her menagerie of pets and working on her next book.

Social Links:

Author Website: http://www.worldofamandahocking.com/
Twitter: @Amanda_Hocking
Facebook: @AmandaHockingFans
Author Blog

My review

Firstly, I’d like to thank St. Martin’s Press for providing me with an eARC of this book in exchange for my honest opinion.

Since From the Earth to the Shadows is a sequel, I can’t tell you much about the story. I reviewed the first book in the duology a couple months ago, so if you’d like to get a sense of what this is about, you can read that review here.

This second book is more of a heist and quest book. Our characters have to steal objects, as they were chosen for this mission by a Vanir god. In order to do this, they have to go to Kurgunia, the Underworld, where all immortals live after their time on Earth is done. 💀

Valeska nodded once. “At noon, we go to hell.”

We have way more action in this book than we did in the first one. There are more fighting scenes – and an uprising -, so almost every chapter is action-packed, which makes the book a fast read. ⚡️

I read it in two days, and although I enjoyed it, there was something missing. I can’t put my finger on it, but I liked the first book a bit more. Maybe it’s all the heartbreak this one caused… ☹️

Our main characters are back, and now there are so many new ones!! I really enjoyed meeting Valeska, for one, she’s badass. I mean, any girl that can fly is automatically badass, amirite? But my favorite new character was probably Lyra, she was very sweet and just wanted to do whatever she could for her daughter! 😢

“I don’t want to overwhelm him or scare him off.”
“Overwhelm him?” he asked once I’d closed the door behind him. “This guy alleges to have dated your mother. If she didn’t overwhelm him, nothing will.”
“Fair enough.”

There are LGBT characters in this book, as well as the first one, which I always appreciate. And it’s girls!! Usually, the LGBT books I read are about boys, so I really enjoyed this, it’s a breath of fresh air ☺️ The main romance in this book is very cute, and I loved every second of it! Asher is the sweetest 😍

His voice was low and husky as he stared into my eyes and said, “When they brought me here, they showed me the unimaginable enchantment of the world outside these walls. I have seen beauty beyond anything I could’ve dreamed, the full breadth and majesty of everything their heavens have to offer.” He smiled softly and cradled my face in his hand. “And still, I’ve never seen anything as wonderful and beautiful as you walking through that door in the dungeon.”

As for the plot, I thought it was well-thought-out and -executed, so that is definitely a strong point of this book. I loved seeing Hocking’s interpretation of the Underworld, as it’s something I think about a lot. When you think about the Underworld, what do you imagine it’s like?

Once again, this book was filled with mythology. In this world, all the different mythology from different cultures is mashed together, so you have gods like Bastet, Tsukiyomi, Prometheus, all in the same book. Additionally, there are creatures from many different cultures like a chupacabra, kalanoro, alkonost and wolpertinger. I love how the author combines all of this in one story, it’s very cool!

Along with mythology, there is also magic, as one of the main characters works with thaumaturgy and alchemy. Here are some of the spells she uses:

“Omnium visibilium et invisibilium omnium manemus”

“Lux splendida!”

Overall, it was an enjoyable read, and a nice conclusion to the duology. I am not a fan of urban fantasy, but I like these two books, so if you’re a reader of the genre, definitely give these a try!

★★★☆☆ 3.5/5 stars


Have you read this duology? What did you think about it? Let me know in the comments! ♡

I hope you enjoyed reading my thoughts on From the Earth to the Shadows and if you’d like, check out my other book reviews!


Thank you so much for reading,
I’ll see you in my next post ♡

Advertisements

Review: The Lost Woman by Sara Blædel

Processed with VSCO with a6 preset

ecc66b567676f0fc96692fd498b958f6The Lost Woman by Sara Blaedel

Goodreads rating: 3.77

Pages: 281 (Portuguese edition)

Genre: Adult, Contemporary, Thriller, Crime, Mystery, Nordic Noir

Date published: Nov 7th, 2014 (Denmark)

My rating: ★★★★☆

Goodreads // Buy this book: Paperback & Hardback

Synopsis

Shot with a hunting rifle through her kitchen window, the woman is dead before she hits the ground. Though murdered in England, it turns out that the woman, Sofie Parker, is a Danish citizen–one who’s been missing for almost two decades–so Louise Rick is called on to the case.

Then the police discover that the woman, Sophie, had been reported missing eighteen years ago by none other than Eik, Louise Rick’s police colleague and lover. Impulsive as ever, Eik rushes to England, and ends up in jail on suspicion of Sofie’s murder. Unsettled by the connection, and sick with worry for Eik, it falls to Louise to find the killer in what will become her most controversial case yet…

My review

I picked this book up on a whim when I was at a bookstore one day and I ended up really enjoying it.

The Lost Woman is the 9th book in the Louise Rick series, and yet you can totally read it without reading the previous ones. Of course, you don’t get to see the development of each character’s background story, but that doesn’t really affect your reading – and you can always pick up the rest of the series after.

I thought the plot was very nicely crafted, and I loved the way the characters were connected, and how we got to delve into one of the main characters’ emotional past. Speaking of characters, I really liked the way Blædel wrote them, they were quite mysterious, which I appreciated. That aspect made it so that you didn’t really know who to trust, although the author did sort of hint at the culprit at one point (they acted a bit weird).

One aspect I really loved was how the author presented a controversial issue – don’t want to spoil it for you – that is still being discussed today, and is one of the main subjects in the book. You can tell the author did a lot of research, in order to realistically present to us how the issue is handled by different people and in different countries. I also loved the solving of the case, I thought it was very clever, and it made perfect sense, which doesn’t always happen in crime books, does it?

My only issue with this book was how the pacing was consistent throughout the whole thing – a very nice pace, mind you – but as soon as we started figuring things out, everything happened too fast. A lot was happening simultaneously and at an exhaustive pace, which threw me off a bit. And just like that, the book is over and you’re already reading the epilogue. I do enjoy a fast-paced book, but I hate it when it gets too fast towards the end, to the extent that it confuses the reader.

As for the writing, I can’t really rate it because I read a translated version (I have yet to learn Danish), but I did like the style of the narration that the translator presented.

Processed with VSCO with a6 preset

My rating

In conclusion, I quite enjoyed “The Lost Woman”, with the exception of that aspect I mentioned earlier.

Zuky, you might like this one!

I also think it’s a nice Nordic Noir book for people who, like me, are just getting into the genre, and don’t really have that much experience with this kind of reading.

Writing – translation –
Characters 4-01
Plot 4-01
Pacing 3-01

Overall

3.66 stars


Have you read many Nordic Noir books? Which do you recommend? Let me know in the comments down below ♡

I hope you enjoyed reading my thoughts on The Lost Woman and if you’d like, check out my other book reviews!


Thank you so much for reading,
I’ll see you in my next post ♡

I Hate Everyone But You: review & GIVEAWAY [closed]

Processed with VSCO with a6 preset

I Hate Everyone But You by Gaby Dunn and Allison Raskin

Goodreads rating: 3.72

Pages: 352

Genre: Young Adult, Contemporary, Romance

Date published: September 5th, 2017 (USA)

Goodreads // Buy this book: Paperback & Hardback

Synopsis

Dear Best Friend,
I can already tell that I will hate everyone but you.
Sincerely,
Ava Helmer
(that brunette who won’t leave you alone)

We’re still in the same room, you weirdo.
Stop crying.
G

So begins a series of texts and emails sent between two best friends, Ava and Gen, as they head off to their first semesters of college on opposite sides of the country. From first loves to weird roommates, heartbreak, self-discovery, coming out and mental health, the two best friends will document every moment to each other. But as each changes and grows into her new life, will their friendship be able to survive the distance?

My review

Firstly, I’d like to thank St. Martin’s Press for providing me with an ARC in exchange for review, and for partnering up with me to give a copy away to one of you ♡

So, a cool detail about this book is its format: it is told through emails and text messages between our two main characters, Ava and Gen. However, this format makes it quite tiring to read, and I got bored in some parts.

Concerning the characters, I wasn’t exactly fond of them, they were just alright – probably because I could not relate to either of them. They make some bad decisions, but I think that only made them more human – we all screw up, don’t we?

The story itself is pretty cliché (with some unusual aspects), but still enjoyable. It’s a simple plot, that we might have seen a hundred times before, but enjoy nonetheless. I’d say it’s a typical contemporary that you read in one summer afternoon!

There are a couple topics that are important and were addressed throughout the book – mental health and sexuality -, which I really appreciated.

I think the book could have been just a tad bit longer, so everything wrapped up a little better, but all in all, I liked how the story went!

For a debut novel, I thought the writing wasn’t bad at all, and in this format, there’s an extra challenge for the writer: writing emails and texts without making them sound weird, or using words/sentences that no one would use in this context. In that sense, I think Gaby and Allison nailed it!

My rating

Overall, I Hate Everyone But You is a quick, light-hearted summer read that you will really enjoy. Especially relevant to people going into college, since that’s the setting of this book!

★★★☆☆ 3.5/5 stars


GIVEAWAY

As the winner, you will receive a copy of I Hate Everyone But You. Here’s how to enter to win in 4 easy steps:

  1. Follow my blog
  2. Follow me on Instagram
  3. Subscribe to my Youtube channel
  4. Leave a comment in one of my blog posts

For an extra entry, tag a friend in the comments on the Instagram post

And that’s it!! After these steps, you are entered to win the giveaway!

This giveaway will end on September 27, so you have around two and a half weeks to enter. Good luck to everyone participating! ♡


Thank you so much for reading,
I’ll see you in my next post ♡

Review: The One That Got Away by Melissa Pimentel

Processed with VSCO with hb2 preset

The One That Got Away by Melissa Pimentel

Goodreads rating: 3.45

Pages: 400

Genre: Adult, Contemporary, Romance

Date published: August 22nd, 2017 (USA)

Goodreads // Buy this book: Paperback & Hardback

Synopsis

Ruby and Ethan were perfect for each other. Until the day they suddenly weren’t.

Now, ten years later, Ruby is single, having spent the last decade focusing on her demanding career and hectic life in Manhattan. There’s barely time for a trip to England for her little sister’s wedding. And there’s certainly not time to think about what it will be like to see Ethan again, who just so happens to be the best man.

But as the family frantically prepare for the big day, Ruby can’t help but wonder if she made the right choice all those years ago. Because there is nothing like a wedding for stirring up the past…

 

My review

Firstly, I’d like to thank St. Martin’s Press for providing me with an ARC in exchange for review ♡

Trigger warning: sexual assault

As soon as I read the synopsis for this book, I knew I had to read it. It sounded like the classical brit lit book that is funny, but deep at the same time. I must say, my expectations were quite high, and I wasn’t disappointed!

I quite enjoyed it, and I especially liked how the story was told through flashbacks, as well as present time. It gives you another perspective that I like to have when reading a story.

I liked the main character, Ruby, she wasn’t frustrating (probably because it’s an adult novel) and worked great as a lead character. The other characters were alright, but my favorite was Piper, the Bridezilla. Who doesn’t love a good Bridezilla character, am I right?

The author’s writing is nice, and totally fits with this type of book. If you ever pick it up, I’d suggest you do it over the summer – it’s 100% the perfect summer read!

My rating

Overall, The One That Got Away is a nice, fluffy read, with sassy characters and a typical plotline that will definitely hook you up from the start.

3.5/5 stars3.5-01

Wrap Up: July 2017

Processed with VSCO with hb2 preset


 

Read in English

July was quite a productive month, if you ask me. Between going to the beach and all the other summer activities, I managed to read four books, three of which already have a review up on the blog!


812bsf2bbnqul

The first book I read was my first graphic novel: Saga, vol. I by Brian E. Vaughan and Fiona Staples.

I thoroughly enjoyed it and, since it is a graphic novel, I flew through it in about an hour (maybe one and a half).

The world is super cool and intricate, and it is sort of set in space, so I’m all about it!

The characters were super funny, but I must say the dialogue is not children-friendly – there’s a ton of swearing, and some of the scenes themselves are NSFW.

The illustrations are GORGEOUS, and the story is very captivating. I can’t wait to read the rest of the series!

4-01


Inevitable Collision of Birdie & Bash FINAL

For one of the blog tours I am a part of, I read The Inevitable Collision of Birdie & Bash by Candace Ganger.

This one I absolutely LOVED. It was heart-wrenching and heart-warming, all at once.

It’s a brilliant debut novel, and a very different kind of contemporary romance.

You can read the review here, in which I go more into detail about the book.

4-01


33151805
Next up, I read Into the Water by Paula Hawkins.

I really enjoyed it, it was a great first experience with thrillers, and I can’t wait to dive more into the genre – and to read Hawkins’s other book!

I won’t go into detail about it, because I already have a post entirely dedicated to it – you can read it here.

4-01


literally-lucy-keating-book-cover1

The last book I read was Literally by Lucy Keating.

This one was a bit of a disappointment, since I absolutely loved Dreamology, the author’s debut novel. I went into Literally with high expectations and, sadly, it never met them.

You can read all about my thoughts in the review I posted.

3-01


So those were all the books I read during the month of July. I enjoyed all of them – some more than others, of course.

What did you guys read in July? Let me know in the comments, I’d love to know!

Thank you so much for reading,
I’ll see you in my next post ♡

 


 

Lê em Português

O mês de Julho não foi mau de todo: entre idas à praia, piscina e tudo a que o verão nos dá direito, acabei por ler quatro livros, sendo que escrevi/gravei opinião de três deles. Um mês produtivo!!

Se gostarem do vídeo, não se esqueçam de clicar no “like”, subscrever o canal e partilhar o vídeo com todos os amantes de literatura!


Obrigada por visitarem o meu blog,
Vêmo-nos no próximo post! ♡

 

Blog Tour: Bad Girl Gone Review


Processed with VSCO with hb2 preset

img_0334-1

Bad Girl Gone by Temple Mathews

Goodreads rating: 2.95

Pages: 256

Genre: Young Adult, Contemporary, Paranormal, Romance

Date published: August 8th, 2017 (USA)

Goodreads // Buy this book: Hardback

 

Synopsis

Sixteen year-old Echo Stone awakens in a cold sweat in a dark room, having no idea where she is or how she got there. But she soon finds out she’s in Middle House, an orphanage filled with mysteriously troubled kids.

There’s just one problem: she’s not an orphan. Her parents are very much alive.

She explains this to everyone, but no one will listen. After befriending a sympathetic (and handsome) boy, Echo is able to escape Middle House and rush home, only to discover it sealed off by crime scene tape and covered in the evidence of a terrible and violent crime. As Echo grapples with this world-shattering information, she spots her parents driving by and rushes to flag them down. Standing in the middle of street, waving her arms to get their attention, her parents car drives right through her.

She was right. Her parents are alive but she’s not.

She’s a ghost, just like all the other denizens of Middle House. Desperate to somehow get her life back and reconnect with her still-alive boyfriend, Echo embarks on a quest to solve her own murder. As the list of suspects grows, the quest evolves into a journey of self-discovery in which she learns she wasn’t quite the girl she thought she was. In a twist of fate, she’s presented with one last chance to reclaim her life and must make a decision which will either haunt her or bless her forever.

My review

Firstly, I want to thank St. Martin’s Press for providing me with a copy of this book for review.

Trigger warnings: violence, murder, haunting

This book has a cool premise, I thought the plot was very interesting. It’s not the best book I’ve ever read, but I really liked seeing the story from the ghosts’ perspective. It’s not a very common thing – or at least I don’t know of many books that feature the perspective of ghosts.

I was starting to get mad, thinking I could not go off into eternal rest looking like a country-western singer!

The characters could have been developed a bit better, and I think the book is too short for so many characters! If we had 100 more pages it could have been a way better book. I did enjoy the kids, and they were very funny, but they lacked development.

There is sort of a love triangle, between the living and the dead, so if you’re someone who can’t stand love triangles, this one might not be for you.

The kiss lingered and he was already halfway down the hall, and about three-quarters of the way into my heart.

The pacing was a little inconsistent at times – there were a couple parts in which I felt as though everything was happening very fast, others very slow -, but the majority of the book felt fine!

There is a mystery element all throughout the book, which hooked me. I really wanted to find out what had happened! And when we finally found out, I was perplexed. Did not see that coming!

“Sometimes bad things happen to good people,” said Zipperhead. “There’s no accounting for it. Shit happens, and then you die.”

The author’s writing was nice, and the way he wrote Echo felt true to a teenage girl – at least in my opinion! I could relate to her most of the time, although she made stupid decisions from time to time. Don’t we all?

I liked the atmosphere of the book, too, it felt very creepy in the beginning, and then it turned into sort of an adventure, and I loved both!

The ending was a bit predictable, but that’s very common in contemporary books.

My rating

In conclusion, I did enjoy this book, and I recommend it for the fact that it’s different, and also a quick, spooky read – perfect for Autumn and Halloween time!

Writing 3.5-01
Characters 2.5-01
Plot 3-01
Pacing 3.5-01

Overall

3.13 stars


Do you have any recommendations of books told from the perspective of ghosts? Let me know in the comments below! ♡

I hope you enjoyed reading my thoughts on Bad Girl Gone and if you’d like, check out my other book reviews!

Thank you so much for reading,
I’ll see you on my next post ♡

 

Review: Literally by Lucy Keating

literally-01


Read in English

literally-lucy-keating-book-cover1 Literally by Lucy Keating

Goodreads rating: 3.39

Pages: 256

Genre: Young Adult, Contemporary, Romance

Date published: April 11th, 2017 (USA)

Goodreads // Buy this book: Paperback & Hardback

Synopsis

Annabelle’s life has always been Perfect with a capital P. Then bestselling young adult author Lucy Keating announces that she’s writing a new novel—and Annabelle is the heroine.

It turns out, Annabelle is a character that Lucy Keating created. And Lucy has a plan for her.

But Annabelle doesn’t want to live a life where everything she does is already plotted out. Will she find a way to write her own story—or will Lucy Keating have the last word?

My review

I went into Literally with high expectations, and I didn’t even know anything about it when I started reading, but, sadly, it was a bit of a letdown. I never wrote a review for Dreamology, Lucy Keating’s first book, but it was amazing and I gave it 5 stars on Goodreads. However, Literally was just not as good, and it makes me sad because I love the author. Don’t get me wrong, I did enjoy the book, but less than her debut novel.

The story, overall, although it’s creative, I felt it was a bit silly. Basically, the main character, Annabelle, finds out that an author named Lucy Keating (same name as the real author of Literally) is writing her life, as well as the life of everyone around her. And so, there is this sci-fi-ish element throughout the whole book, but nothing is even remotely believable. There is also some “theory of writing” thrown in the story, since Annabelle is taking a Fiction class in high school, so she starts identifying the concepts she learns in class in her life, which, again, is being written by an author. The whole thing was just silly, in my opinion. It is very original, though, I will give her that!

“I rest my head against him and I think, This is not a sure thing. There are no promises here. But I’m seventeen years old, and the only place in the world I wanna be is on this couch, with this guy, listening to this song over and over again. And maybe tomorrow it will all be different. But I don’t care.”

The author’s writing is great, as usual, it reads super easily and next thing you know, you’ve finished the book. It’s not a long book either, so it goes by super fast!

“My dad taught me a long time ago that a run would calm me down. He walked into my room one Saturday afternoon and found me rearranging my bookshelf, stacks and stacks surrounding me like building blocks.
“Didn’t you just do this a month ago?” he asked.
I paused. “That was by genre,” I explained. “This time it’s by color.””

The characters were another fault in the book. The main character and her love interest were great – relatable even -, but everyone else was as flat as an ironing board. This is what I meant when I talked about how characters usually are in other books in my last review: the main characters are nice, but everyone else is just there to interact with the main character, which sucks because you want to KNOW them properly.

“And just because something ends, doesn’t mean it didn’t mean anything. Sometimes, you have to take the risk.”

The pacing was nice, the story had a good flow – also thanks to Lucy’s great writing – and, even though a lot of things happened in this book, they happened at good rhythm – good enough for you to not get lost in all of it.

 

My rating

In conclusion, I did enjoy this book: it’s just a fun, cutesy read with a twist that is, simultaneously, silly and addicting. It had a nice, original story, but not very well executed. The writing was great, and so was the love interest ♡ but, overall, it was a bit of a letdown, especially compared to Dreamology.

Writing 3.5-01
Characters 2.5-01
Plot 3-01
Pacing 4-01

Overall

3.25 stars

Ler em Português

literally-lucy-keating-book-cover1 Literally de Lucy Keating

Avaliação no Goodreads: 3.39

Páginas: 256

Géneros: Young Adult, Contemporary, Romance

Data de publicação: 11 de Abril, 2017 (USA)

Goodreads // Compra este livro: Capa mole & Capa dura no BookDepository; Capa dura na Wook

 

Opinião

 
Literally conta-nos a história da Annabelle, que sempre teve uma vida perfeita. Um dia, na aula de escrita creativa, a sua professora apresenta à turma uma escritora chamada Lucy Keating (sim, tem o mesmo nome da autora real do livro), que lhes fala do seu novo livro. Quando Annabelle ouve a descrição da história desse livro, apercebe-se de que é exactamente igual à vida dela e confronta a autora – que admite estar a escrever a vida dela, bem como a de todos à sua volta.

Eu comecei este livro com expectativas um pouco altas, porque li o primeiro livro da autora, Dreamology, e adorei, avaleei-o com 5 estrelas no Goodreads. No entanto, o Literally não foi tão bom como o anterior, o que me entristece porque eu adoro a autora. Eu gostei do livro de qualquer forma, mas não tanto como do Dreamology (nem perto).

A história, apesar de criativa, pareceu-me um pouco tola. Nada daquilo que ia acontecendo foi credível. Também há partes em que a protagonista fala da teoria da escrita que aprende na aula, e a aplica à forma como a tal Lucy está a escrever a vida dela. Como eu disse, original, mas bastante tolo!

“I rest my head against him and I think, This is not a sure thing. There are no promises here. But I’m seventeen years old, and the only place in the world I wanna be is on this couch, with this guy, listening to this song over and over again. And maybe tomorrow it will all be different. But I don’t care.”

A escrita da autora foi óptima, como sempre. Lê-se super bem, e quando damos por nós já acabámos o livro. Ademais, o livro é relativamente curto, portanto lê-se muito rapidamente.

“My dad taught me a long time ago that a run would calm me down. He walked into my room one Saturday afternoon and found me rearranging my bookshelf, stacks and stacks surrounding me like building blocks.
“Didn’t you just do this a month ago?” he asked.
I paused. “That was by genre,” I explained. “This time it’s by color.””

As personagens foram outra falha do livro. A protagonista e o rapaz por quem se apaixona são maravilhosos, mas todos os outros são pãezinhos sem sal. Era disto que falava na última review: as personagens principais são maravilhosas e estão desenvolvidas; as restantes estão lá somente para interagir com as principais, e nunca as chegamos a conhecer mesmo.

“And just because something ends, doesn’t mean it didn’t mean anything. Sometimes, you have to take the risk.”

O ritmo agradou-me, a história é fluida – também graças à escrita da autora – e, apesar de imensas coisas acontecerem, não acontecem super rapidamente, têm um bom andamento e não nos perdemos em tudo o que está a acontecer.

Avaliação

Resumindo e concluindo, eu gostei da leitura: é um livro fofinho com aquele twist que é, simultaneamente, tolo e viciante. A história é original, mas foi mal explorada e executada. Foi um pouco desapontante, especialmente comparada ao Dreamology.

Escrita 3.5-01
Personagens 2.5-01
Enredo 3-01
Ritmo 4-01

Total

3.25 estrelas