Immunity by Erin Bowman 💫 Spoiler Free Review

Title: Immunity
Series: Contagion
Author: Erin Bowman
Genre: YA Science Fiction
Publication Date: July 2nd, 2019
Pages: 434
Publishers: Harper Teen
Rating:

Goodreads Synopsis

Survivors of a deadly planetary outbreak take on a new, sinister adversary in the sequel to Contagion.

They thought their nightmare was over, but Thea, Coen, and Nova’s rescue was only the beginning. After being imprisoned on a ship they thought was their ticket to safety, it’s clear that the threat they left behind isn’t as distant as they’d hoped—and this time the entire galaxy is at risk.

Now that threat is about to be unleashed as an act of political warfare. To prevent an interstellar catastrophe, the survivors must harness the evil they faced on the planet Achlys and learn to wield the only weapon they have left: themselves. 

So let’s start with the positives this time as I usually get the negatives out of the road first.

So to begin with there is just something about Erin Bowman’s writing that I find extremely gripping! I just couldn’t put the book down! Contagion I read in 1 day! While it took me a couple days for Immunity, that was more because I’m (hopefully) coming out of a reading slump and I was busy, so didn’t have a day to just dedicate to reading!
Immunity was also fast paced and action packed, just as Contagion was! It was also unpredictable and I think those 3 things are what adds up to the book being very gripping! There is always something going on and there is always the anxious wait to find out what is going to happen next!
I also really enjoyed the POV in Immunity. The multi POV is done very well. Each of the characters have their own unique voice within the writing of their sections. There was also a different POV that was separated from the main 4 which I really enjoyed. I won’t say who because that’s spoilers!

Now for the negatives. Which my main one is the genre! Contagion was a YA Horror with a Sci-Fi setting. It was creepy and atmospheric which just bought the story to life! Immunity on the other hand it just a Sci-Fi. It lost that Horror element which just gave it that push from a good book to a great book in Contagion! So that was disappointing.
Then there was the ending which I just felt was unsatisfying. There was a bit of a big action scene but it felt slightly flat and then it was all over and the happily ever after part was happening. I just feel like there could of been so much more to the conclusion but as it is it just felt too easy!

So overall I still enjoyed Immunity but it definitely didn’t live up to Contagion! If this was a book on it’s own it probably would of worked well but as a conclusion to Contagion it just wasn’t on the right level. I’m super curious to see what Erin Bowman releases next and hopefully they live up to the level of Contagion.

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A Gathering of Shadows by V.E. Schwab 💫 Spoiler Free Review

Title: A Gathering of Shadows
Series: Shades of Magic
Author: V.E. Schwab
Genre: YA Fantasy
Publication Date: February 23rd, 2016
Pages: 512
Publishers: Tor Books
Rating:

Goodreads Synopsis

It has been four months since a mysterious obsidian stone fell into Kell’s possession. Four months since his path crossed with Delilah Bard. Four months since Prince Rhy was wounded, and since the nefarious Dane twins of White London fell, and four months since the stone was cast with Holland’s dying body through the rift–back into Black London.

Now, restless after having given up his smuggling habit, Kell is visited by dreams of ominous magical events, waking only to think of Lila, who disappeared from the docks as she always meant to do. As Red London finalizes preparations for the Element Games–an extravagant international competition of magic meant to entertain and keep healthy the ties between neighboring countries–a certain pirate ship draws closer, carrying old friends back into port.

And while Red London is caught up in the pageantry and thrills of the Games, another London is coming back to life. After all, a shadow that was gone in the night will reappear in the morning. But the balance of magic is ever perilous, and for one city to flourish, another London must fall.

So I may as well get my negative out of the road first and then we can look at the positives. The pacing & not being as action packed as expected was my 2 negatives. This book was fairly slow reading which was impacted by not only the pacing but with the minimal actual fast paced action.

Now as for the things I liked, firstly the word & the world development! The Shades of Magic world is very vivid & fleshed out. V.E. Schwab has a way of describing worlds that just come alive on the page and it’s one of my favourite things about her writing!

Then there was the POV. In this book we follow many POVs which is more than book 1 I believe. It’s been a long time since I read book 1 but I think it was only from 2 POV, I could be wrong though. Anyways, the multi POV in this one was done very well. The characters that we had many chapters from had a distinctive voice to the writing. They felt individual and the characters personality came through. I also just enjoyed that we had so many points of view. It added an interesting twist to the story line that we wouldn’t of gotten with just 1 or 2 POVs.

Next I really enjoyed the plot of this one! I hadn’t read a synopsis going in and I just loved this game/challenge aspect that was introduced. It was very different from book 1 but also had that underlying plot which has continued from book 1 which I enjoyed. Even though it didn’t fell super action packed the story itself was intriguing and I’m super keen to find out where this is all going!

Lastly we have the characters! Much like the world all the characters are very fleshed out and well developed. This was helped with having the multi POV as you get to learn about the characters from their own view point as well as the views of others. My favourite character is definitely Lila. She is just super interesting and stubborn and kinda badass and I love her! I do also of course love Kell but Lila is my fave.

So overall I really enjoyed this one and I’m keen to get to book 3, which I hoping will be a bit more action packed! Now I just need to read it soon rather than waiting a couple years like I did between books 1 & 2!

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Wilder Girls by Rory Power 💫 Spoiler Free Review

Title: Wilder Girls
Author: Rory Power
Genre: YA Mystery Horror
Publication Date: July 9th, 2019
Pages: 353
Publishers: Delacorte Press
Rating:

Goodreads Synopsis

It’s been eighteen months since the Raxter School for Girls was put under quarantine. Since the Tox hit and pulled Hetty’s life out from under her.

It started slow. First the teachers died one by one. Then it began to infect the students, turning their bodies strange and foreign. Now, cut off from the rest of the world and left to fend for themselves on their island home, the girls don’t dare wander outside the school’s fence, where the Tox has made the woods wild and dangerous. They wait for the cure they were promised as the Tox seeps into everything.

But when Byatt goes missing, Hetty will do anything to find her, even if it means breaking quarantine and braving the horrors that lie beyond the fence. And when she does, Hetty learns that there’s more to their story, to their life at Raxter, than she could have ever thought true.

So, firstly this book was just super disappointing for me! I’ve heard a fair amount of hype for this one & I expected to really enjoy this one! A dystopian sounding mystery? I was in! But overall it was just a nope for me in the end.

So for the thing that I did enjoy to start off with. I really enjoyed the setting of this one. It was super creepy & eerie feeling and it had so much potential if the rest of the story had followed through.

So mostly I think it was the writing that overall let this one down. To begin with the writing just felt super flat! I didn’t feel engaged in the story or hooked to it in anyway. Because of that I ended up not really caring what happened or about the characters. As for the characters I just couldn’t connect with them at all. Again they were just flat. It didn’t really feel like they had a personality or individuality that we were meant to connect with. The MC described the other characters & their personalities but it didn’t really follow through to what we actually saw of those characters.

Then there was the kind of romance I guess you could call it. You guys know that I’m not a huge romance fan but in this case I don’t believe it was just my dislike of YA romances that was an issue. The romance was just bad. The romance was just completely pointless and did not anything to the story. It felt forced and like the author was kinda only half going for it. To some degree it felt like the romance was just there to make sure you understood that the 2 girls were not straight.. I love a LGBT feature in a book but it wasn’t necessary to throw this not very thought out and forced romance in there just to prove the sexuality of the two characters. We believed it perfectly fine when the MC mentions it, it didn’t need to be anything more.

Then lastly I just want to talk about the plot. So, the plot was unpredictable but because the writing was so flat the ‘big reveals’ just left me thinking ‘oh, yeah okay’ and not ‘holy shit I didn’t see that coming’. There just wasn’t that anxious excitement of wanting to know what would come next.

So overall there was only one thing I really liked about this book. This one just really disappointed me! It had so much potential between the setting and the overall idea/synopsis of the world/plot but the writing just let it down majorly!

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As She Ascends by Jodi Meadows 💫 Spoiler Free Review

Title: As She Ascends
Series: Fallen Isles
Author: Jodi Meadows
Genre: YA Fantasy
Publication Date: September 11th, 2018
Pages: 550
Publishers: Katherine Tegen Books
Rating:

Goodreads Synopsis

Mira, the Hopebearer

Mira Minkoba is on the run with her friends after a fiery escape from the Pit, where she’d been imprisoned for defending the dragons she loves. And she wants answers. Where have all the dragons been taken? Why are powerful noorestones being shipped to the mainland? And did the treaty she’s been defending her whole life truly sell out the Fallen Isles to their enemies?

Mira, the Dragonhearted

As her connection to the dragons—and their power—grows stronger, so does Mira’s fear that she might lose control and hurt someone she loves. But the only way to find the truth is to go home again, to Damina, to face the people who betrayed her and the parents she’s not sure she can trust.

Home, where she must rise above her fears. Or be consumed.

BEFORE SHE IGNITES REVIEW

So firstly, if you have seen my review for Before She Ignites then you may have noticed that I rated it 5 stars. However, I definitely believe that As She Ascends was a lot better than Before She Ignites. I wrote the review for Before She Ignites AGES ago, well before I really figured out my rating system. I’m also more critical now than I was when I reviewed Before She Ignites. Looking back now I would probably only rate Before She Ignites a 4 stars.

So, as I said I enjoyed As She Ascends even more than Before She Ignites! This book is full of unpredictable twists and turns that kept you guessing the entire book! As She Ascends also felt a lot more fast paced than Before She Ignites which made it more engaging and kept you wanting to know what would happen next.

I enjoyed how this series including As She Ascends plays with time & POVs. In this one we get the past from the POV of one of the side characters leading up to the events of Before She Ignites. Which I thought was quite interesting. I enjoyed learning more about them & it helped you develop a better understand on this world & that character.

I also enjoyed that we got even more into the political side of things in this book. I imagine it will be even more prominent in book 3, When She Reigns, which I can’t wait for. It helps develop the world and the background and adds another interest factor.

Also just the development in this book, from the plot to the characters everything to flowed and grew in this book. I love learning about this world which is developing more and more with each book. The character development as well was really well done. We learn more about the characters and see them develop together as a team & as people.

Lastly, from by review of Before She Ignites, I still think this book needs a map! This would be the perfect book for a map displaying all the islands & there placement. There is a fair amount of boat travel in this one and it would be nice to get a better idea of that journey with a map

So overall, there is so many elements in this book that I enjoyed. From the characters, to the world, to the writing. It’s just all done so damn well! I can’t wait to get my hands on Book 3, When She Reigns which I ordered about an hour ago! Hopefully it will arrive soon and I can jump straight in!

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The Devouring Gray by Christine Lynn Herman 💫 Spoiler Free Review

Title: The Devouring Gray
Series: The Devouring Gray
Author: Christine Lynn Herman
Genre: YA Diverse Fantasy
Publication Date: April 2nd, 2019
Pages: 368
Publishers: Titan Books
Rating:

Goodreads Synopsis

On the edge of town a beast haunts the woods, trapped in the Gray, its bonds loosening…

Uprooted from the city, Violet Saunders doesn’t have much hope of fitting in at her new school in Four Paths, a town almost buried in the woodlands of rural New York. The fact that she’s descended from one of the town’s founders doesn’t help much, either—her new neighbours treat her with distant respect, and something very like fear. When she meets Justin, May, Isaac, and Harper, all children of founder families, and sees the otherworldly destruction they can wreak, she starts to wonder if the townsfolk are right to be afraid.

When bodies start to appear in the woods, the locals become downright hostile. Can the teenagers solve the mystery of Four Paths, and their own part in it, before another calamity strikes?

This was a bloody amazing debut! This book was an intense & creepy read that I just couldn’t put down! In the beginning this book was a little confusing. You are thrown straight in with no background which usually would irritate me but I think it was done really well. There was enough that left you curious & interested. Then slowly you are given background and this world blossoms around you.

This book was extremely atmospheric! You couldn’t help being engrossed in this world and the setting. It was creepy, vivid and very well developed. The setting & atmosphere of this book was probably my favourite part of the book. The plot and characters were great but the atmosphere is what really made this book for me.

The plot was very unpredictbale! There were plenty of twists and turns which kept me gripped to this story the whole time! I just didn’t want to put it down .

All of the characters were very well developed as well! They all felt fleshed out and realistic. I also really enjoyed the multi POV of this one! Even though there was no direct indication of whose POV you were reading from at the time there was no confusion. Each of the POV felt very individual to the character, with their own personality.

Overall, I really enjoyed this book and can’t wait for book 2! Everything was very well developed, from the setting to the characters. The book was gripping and I just couldn’t put it down!

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One Word Kill by Mark Lawerence – Spoiler Free Review

Title: One Word Kill
Series Name: Impossible Times
Author: Mark Lawerence
Genre: Adult Sci-Fi Fantasy
Publication Date: May 1st, 2019
Pages: 201 (Paperback)
Publishers: 47North
Rating:

Goodreads Synopsis

In January 1986, fifteen-year-old boy-genius Nick Hayes discovers he’s dying. And it isn’t even the strangest thing to happen to him that week.

Nick and his Dungeons & Dragons-playing friends are used to living in their imaginations. But when a new girl, Mia, joins the group and reality becomes weirder than the fantasy world they visit in their weekly games, none of them are prepared for what comes next. A strange—yet curiously familiar—man is following Nick, with abilities that just shouldn’t exist. And this man bears a cryptic message: Mia’s in grave danger, though she doesn’t know it yet. She needs Nick’s help—now.

He finds himself in a race against time to unravel an impossible mystery and save the girl. And all that stands in his way is a probably terminal disease, a knife-wielding maniac and the laws of physics.

Challenge accepted.

So just a little note, I actually read this back in July. I was planning on reading book 2, which I also had from NetGalley soon after & review them together as they are very short books. But here I am in September and I still haven’t read book 2. So I finally decided to review this one. I am basing this review on my memory of a book I read a couple months ago, so it may not be super indepth.

At the time this was the first book I had read by Mark Lawernce and I was not disappointed. The author created this very mysterious but vivid world full of time travel and other odd sci-fi stuff but with the background of the 1980s and blended it all together brilliantly. Everything is in this 200 page book was thought out and very well developed. Of course there was mystery but that’s the whole idea.

Also this super short book kept me hooked from page 1 to page 201! It was full of twists & turns, none of which were predictable. It was gripping and just dragged you into it with full force.

I really enjoyed the strong friendships that Lawerence built in One Word Kill. You felt like you were part of them and it made you care about the characters just as much as they did each other in the story. The characters were very well developed as well which made it easier to connect with them as they felt more real. There was of course a blossoming romance which I didn’t hate. It developed well and didn’t feel overly tropey in any way which is a plus.

I will say that there is a trigger warning for Cancer, however it’s not a major part of the plot, it’s just apart of that characters life and it comes up throughout the book.

Overall, for a book this short it well and truly packs a punch. I recommend picking this one up and I can’t wait to have time to continue the series.

Thank you to NetGalley & 47North for providing me an eARC of this book in exchange for an honest review!

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Graphic Novel 📚 Misfit City, The Woods & Heartstopper 💫 Mashup Mini Spoiler Free Reviews

Misfit City, Vol 1: The Arrow

Title: Misfit City: Vol 1
Series: Misfit City
Author: Kirsten Smith, Kurt Lustgarten & Naomi Franquiz
Genre: YA Mystery
Publication Date: December 19th, 2017
Pages: 112
Publishers: BOOM! Box
Rating:

Goodreads Synopsis

Nothing’s happened in Wilder’s hometown since they filmed that cult kids’ adventure movie there in the 80s…Until one day, she and her friends come upon a centuries-old pirate map!

Smothered by her backwater hometown and frustrated by its 1980s cult-movie fame (The Gloomies…have you seen it? It’s a real classic, y’know.), Wilder is pretty sure she’s seen everything Cannon Cove has to offer. She’s desperate to get away from home as soon as she can, and move on to bigger, better, and less annoying things…even if that might mean leaving her best friends behind.

But when Wilder discovers a centuries-old pirate map, she may find out that REAL adventure was in their tiny town all along…and they need each other to get to the bottom of it! It’s a rip-roaring adventure written by award-winning screenwriter Kiwi Smith (10 Things I Hate About YouLegally Blonde) and Kurt Lustgarten, and illustrated by Naomi Franquiz.

This is one of the only Graphic Novels I’ve read that I was hooked basically straight away! I love a good mystery so I was intrigued from the very beginning and I can’t wait to continue to the next volume!
This one so far is easy to follow & mysterious which I’m loving. I’ve only read 1 volume so far, so not quite far enough in to really get into the plot and get a real feel for the characters just yet but enjoying both so far.
Also I love that there is dog in this one that just comes along for all the adventures. That would be my girl too!

The Woods: Vol 1, 2 & 3

Title: The Woods, Vol 1: The Arrow
Series: The Woods
Author: James Tynion IV & Michael Dialynas
Genre: YA Sci-Fi Horror
Publication Date: September 23rd, 2014
Pages: 128 & 112
Publishers: BOOM! Studios
Rating:

Goodreads Synopsis

On October 16, 2013, 437 students, 52 teachers, and 24 additional staff from Bay Point Preparatory High School in suburban Milwaukee, WI vanished without a trace. Countless light years away, far outside the bounds of the charted universe, 513 people find themselves in the middle of an ancient, primordial wilderness. Where are they? Why are they there? The answers will prove stranger than anyone could possibly imagine.


Title: The Woods, Vol 2: The Swarm
Series:The Woods
Author: James Tynion IV & Michael Dialynas
Genre: YA Sci-Fi Horror
Publication Date: May 12th, 2015
Pages: 112
Publishers: BOOM! Studios
Rating:

Goodreads Synopsis

An entire high school has been transported to an alien world and must now survive together or die individually.

On October 16, 2013, 437 students, 52 teachers, and 24 additional staff from Bay Point Preparatory High School in suburban Milwaukee, WI vanished without a trace. Countless light years away, far outside the bounds of the charted universe, 513 people find themselves in the middle of an ancient, primordial wilderness. Where are they? Why are they there? The answers will prove stranger than anyone could possibly imagine. Catch a glimpse of Bay Point Preparatory High School before the fateful events of October 16, 2013 in this new story arc. On opening night of the school’s rendition of A Midsummer Night’s Dream, the lives of the students and faculty crossed paths in an almost premonitory way, seeding the various horrors to come. Collects The Woods #5-8. 


Title: The Woods, Vol 2: New London
Series: The Woods
Author: James Tynion IV & Michael Dialynas
Genre: YA Sci-Fi Horror
Publication Date: Jan 19th, 2016
Pages: 112
Publishers: BOOM! Studios
Rating:

Goodreads Synopsis

The first year of the GLAAD nominated series concludes. The more the crew finds out about the woods, the deeper the mystery gets. With Clay and the Duke teaming up to try and force the school into servitude for the New London army, the kids need to think up a plan to save their peers, and fast. And with Adrian uncontrollable and on the loose, no one knows what his next move will be

So I’ll review these three volumes together.
Firstly, this series so far is just freaking weird, but I enjoy it. This is a YA Sci-Fi Graphic Novel that is very mysterious and crazy. This one is full of weird things happening with no explanation and these kids are just basically trying to figure out what the hell is happening. Vol 3 I have enjoyed least out of the 3 volumes I’ve read so far. It introduced this second timeline and was kinda hard to follow at times. It felt very choppy and all over the place which I didn’t love. Basically with this series I am just super curious to find out how and why all this happened, which is keeping me hooked enough to keep going even though its a bit confusing at times. Hopefully I’ll enjoy Vol 4 more than I did Vol 3.

Heartstopper: Vol 1 & 2

Title: Heartstopper: Vol 1
Series: Heartstopper
Author: Alice Oseman
Genre: YA LGBT Contemporary
Publication Date: October, 2018
Pages: 278
Publishers: Hodder Children’s Books
Rating:

Goodreads Synopsis

Charlie, a highly-strung, openly gay over-thinker, and Nick, a cheerful, soft-hearted rugby player, meet at a British all-boys grammar school. Friendship blooms quickly, but could there be something more…? 

Charlie Spring is in Year 10 at Truham Grammar School for Boys. The past year hasn’t been too great, but at least he’s not being bullied anymore, and he’s sort of got a boyfriend, even if he’s kind of mean and only wants to meet up in secret.

Nick Nelson is in Year 11 and on the school rugby team. He’s heard a little about Charlie – the kid who was outed last year and bullied for a few months – but he’s never had the opportunity to talk to him. That is, until the start of January, in which Nick and Charlie are placed in the same form group and made to sit together.

They quickly become friends, and soon Charlie is falling hard for Nick, even though he doesn’t think he has a chance. But love works in surprising ways, and sometimes good things are waiting just around the corner…

From the author of Solitaire and Radio Silence comes a bind up of the first two chapters of Heartstopper, an ongoing webcomic.


Title: Heartstopper: Vol 2
Series: Heartstopper
Author: Alice Oseman
Genre: YA LGBT Contemporary
Publication Date: July 11th, 2019
Pages: 296
Publishers: Hodder Children’s Books
Rating:

Goodreads Synopsis

Boy meets boy. Boys become friends. Boys fall in love. An LGBTQ+ graphic novel about life, love, and everything that happens in between: this is the second volume of HEARTSTOPPER, for fans of The Art of Being Normal, Holly Bourne and Love, Simon. 

Nick and Charlie are best friends. Nick knows Charlie’s gay, and Charlie is sure that Nick isn’t. 

But love works in surprising ways, and Nick is discovering all kinds of things about his friends, his family … and himself. 

Heartstopper is about friendship, loyalty and mental illness. It encompasses all the small stories of Nick and Charlie’s lives that together make up something larger, which speaks to all of us. 

This is the second volume of Heartstopper, with more to come.

As you probably know by now, I don’t really enjoy romance books. However, there is something about Alice Oseman’s writing & stories that I just enjoy. This one is basically straight up romance but I still enjoyed it. It’s just a super fun, easy and light read. Also, I loved realising how these characters tie into Alice Oseman’s other book, Solitaire. Nick is one of the main characters of Heartstopper & his sister, Tori, is the main character of Solitaire. So that was a fun discovery.
Also, Heartstopper started out as a webcomic before being turned into physical books that they are still releasing. You can read the webcomic HERE!

Have you read any of these Graphic Novels?
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