Jackaby by William Ritter – Spoiler Free Review

Review Header Image

Title: Jackaby
Author: 
William Ritter
Series Name: 
Jackaby
Genre: 
YA Paranormal Mystery
Publication Date: September 16th, 2014
Pages: 294 (Paperback)
Publishers: Algonquin Young Readers
Overall Rating:
5 star

Blog titles (20)

“Miss Rook, I am not an occultist,” Jackaby said. “I have a gift that allows me to see truth where others see the illusion–and there are many illusions. All the world’s a stage, as they say, and I seem to have the only seat in the house with a view behind the curtain.”

Newly arrived in New Fiddleham, New England, 1892, and in need of a job, Abigail Rook meets R. F. Jackaby, an investigator of the unexplained with a keen eye for the extraordinary–including the ability to see supernatural beings. Abigail has a gift for noticing ordinary but important details, which makes her perfect for the position of Jackaby’s assistant. On her first day, Abigail finds herself in the midst of a thrilling case: A serial killer is on the loose. The police are convinced it’s an ordinary villain, but Jackaby is certain it’s a nonhuman creature, whose existence the police–with the exception of a handsome young detective named Charlie Cane–deny.

Doctor Who meets Sherlock in William Ritter’s debut novel, which features a detective of the paranormal as seen through the eyes of his adventurous and intelligent assistant in a tale brimming with cheeky humour and a dose of the macabre.

d01c8bcf98e4d9c014501f17b3ae80ed

“That the battles are usually in her head does not lessen the bravery of it. The hardest battles always are.”

Blog titles (29)

I absolutely loved this writing! It was captivating and dragged you into the story very quickly. I got so committed to the plot and characters because of the writing just pulling me in so much! It was also extremely unpredictable which was amazing!

I also love that it delves a little bit further than most paranormal books. In most, you see werewolves, vampires and such but this one goes a bit further into the mythical creature/being side of paranormal. There is a werewolf but we also explore beings such as Redcaps & Banshees which was quite interesting. Outside of Harry Potter, I haven’t really read about them before and this took a different take on those mythical beings compared to how they are represented in Harry Potter, so that was quite interesting to learn about.

Also, I loved the world/setting of the book! This is set in 1892 but an 1892 with paranormal elements which were quite interesting. I don’t very often read books set in this time period as I generally gravitate towards Historical Fiction that is WWII based. While there wasn’t a tonne about the world, you still felt the atmosphere of the era which was nice.

Also, this quote alone made me love the book even more!
“Pockets! I was thrilled. I have never understood the aversion to pockets in ladies’ fashion – as though it has become some great shame to appear as if one might actually need to possess anything.”

Blog titles (30)

As I said earlier, the plot was extremely unpredictable which I loved! It kept you guessing the entire time! The plot is very fast paced. Most of the book takes place within 2 days I think until the last 2 or 3 chapters which show the aftermath.

Goodreads Synopsis (4)

Our main character Abigal is really enjoyable. She defied what it was to be a typical woman in that time period by not following social norms and setting out on her own. She was a strong female character while still being feminine. She is also extremely lovable and I loved her sarcastic/witty nature. It was a delight to read from her POV.

“There were enough voices in my life telling me I couldn’t this, or shouldn’t that, or that I wasn’t up to the task – the last thing I intended to do was start agreeing with them.”

Jackaby was also extremely lovable! He is extremely intelligent but also quirky and fun. He is funny without meaning to and you can’t help but laugh at some of the stuff he comes out with, in full seriousness. It was so amusing just learning about him (note, don’t ever ask him to cook your breakfast if you like your walls hole-free).

“Does this smell like paprika or gunpowder to you?”

Also, I LOVE that there was no romance in this book. There was an attraction between one of the MCs and a side character but that was it. It’s so rare to find YA without romance so I was super happy!

Goodreads Synopsis (5)

I absolutely loved this book! It was so fun and mysterious. The characters were amazing and I had so much fun reading about them. The world/setting was amazingly done and the mystery wasn’t predictable which is a plus! Everything about the writing is just excellent. I don’t have a single complaint about this book. It’s just such a fun read!
I can’t wait to get my hands on book 2, Beastly Bones, I’ve already ordered it and will order the rest of the series soon too.

“But that’s Jackaby in a nutshell. Science and magic, beauty and bedlam, things that ought to be at odds – they just don’t follow the same rules when Jackaby’s involved.” 

Copy of Goodreads Synopsis

You can purchase a copy for yourself at any of the links below.

You could also use my affiliate links for Book DepositoryBooktopia or Angus & Robertson.

Book Depository
Hardcover  //  Paperback

Booktopia
Hardcover  //  Paperback

Angus & Robertson
Hardcover  //  Paperback

Amazon (Aus)
eBook  //  Hardcover  //  Paperback

Copy of Blog titles

HAVE YOU READ THIS BOOK? WHAT DID YOU THINK OF IT? LET ME KNOW IN THE COMMENTS.

Lizaxx1

PURCHASE ANY OF THE BOOKS MENTIONED FROM BOOK DEPOSITORY! WORLDWIDE FREE SHIPPING.
AUSSIE? WANT QUICK SHIPPING? AWESOME PRICES? WANT TO BE ABLE TO USE AFTERPAY? MAYBE TRY BOOKTOPIA OR EVEN ANGUS & ROBERTSON!
FACEBOOK    /    TWITTER    /    PERSONAL TWITTER    /    PINTEREST    /    INKY: @DUSKANGELREADS   /    INSTAGRAM  /    PERSONAL INSTAGRAM    /    GOODREADS    /    PHOTOGRAPHY TUMBLR   /    LITSY: DUSKANGELREADS
SOME OF THE LINKS ON MY BLOG ARE AFFILIATE LINKS. THIS DOES NOT CHANGE THE PRICE OF PURCHASES, HOWEVER, I RECEIVE A SMALL COMMISSION TO HELP ME KEEP THIS BLOG ALIVE!

Queens of Fennbirn by Kendare Blake – Spoiler Free Review

Review Header Image (1)

Title: Queens of Fennbirn
Author: 
Kendare Blake
Series Name: 
Three Dark Crowns
Genre: 
YA Fantasy
Publication Date: May 3rd, 2018
Pages: 232 (Paperback)
Publishers: Pan Macmillan
Overall Rating:
3 and a half star

Blog titles (20)

Uncover the sisters’ origins, dive deep into the catastrophic reign of the Oracle Queen, and reveal layers of Fennbirn’s past, hidden until now.

The Young Queens

Get a glimpse of triplet queens Mirabella, Arsinoe, and Katharine during a short period of time when they protected and loved one another. From birth until their claiming ceremonies, this is the story of the three sisters’ lives…before they were at stake.

The Oracle Queen

Everyone knows the legend of Elsabet, the Oracle Queen. The one who went mad. The one who orchestrated a senseless, horrific slaying of three entire houses. But what really happened? Discover the true story behind the queen who could foresee the future…just not her own downfall.

37902833

So I liked one story more than the other, so I’m just going to break this review into 2 mini-reviews for each story.

Blog titles

3 star

This was my least favourite of the two stories. While it was interesting, I honestly didn’t think most of it was that important. My favourite part of this one is right at the beginning when we get to meet the previous Queen as she is giving birth to the three queens we meet in Three Dark Crowns. That bit was quite interesting and did explain something that is discovered at the end of Three Dark Crowns. Besides that part, the rest of this story just kinda heightens how cruel this whole royal system is in this world. The rest of this story didn’t really shed any light on anything or really serve a purpose, so I didn’t find it overly necessary or entertaining.

Blog titles (1)

4 and a half star

This story follows a previous queen that we hear mentioned often throughout Three Dark Crowns and One Dark Throne books. There is a lot of disturbing rumours about what happened during that queen’s rule. This story basically explains what actually happened. And HOLY SHIT. First off I loved the characters, I connected with them all straight away and considering how short the story is, they were very well developed and thought out. By the end of this story, I actually felt like stabbing someone. Just the intense as hell stuff that happens in this story!! My god, I was so angry by the end of it.
This is definitely a story that drags you in from the first chapter and you end up so invested in the characters that when something happens to them you can’t help being sad/angry/etc.

Copy of Goodreads Synopsis

You can purchase a copy for yourself at any of the links below.

You could also use my affiliate links for Book DepositoryBooktopia or Angus & Robertson.

*There is an alternate cover for this book. See the covers below*

Also, note that the two stories are not available on eBook (well I haven’t been able to find them)

Book Depository
UK Paperback   /   US Paperback

Booktopia
UK Paperback   /   US Paperback

Angus & Robertson
UK Paperback   /   US Paperback

QBD
UK Paperback

Amazon (Aus)
UK Paperback

Left: UK edition
Right: US edition

Copy of Blog titles

HAVE YOU READ THIS BOOK? WHAT DID YOU THINK OF IT? LET ME KNOW IN THE COMMENTS.

Lizaxx1

PURCHASE ANY OF THE BOOKS MENTIONED FROM BOOK DEPOSITORY! WORLDWIDE FREE SHIPPING.
AUSSIE? WANT QUICK SHIPPING? AWESOME PRICES? WANT TO BE ABLE TO USE AFTERPAY? MAYBE TRY BOOKTOPIA OR EVEN ANGUS & ROBERTSON!
FACEBOOK    /    TWITTER    /    PERSONAL TWITTER    /    PINTEREST    /    INKY: @DUSKANGELREADS   /    INSTAGRAM  /    PERSONAL INSTAGRAM    /    GOODREADS    /    PHOTOGRAPHY TUMBLR   /    LITSY: DUSKANGELREADS
SOME OF THE LINKS ON MY BLOG ARE AFFILIATE LINKS. THIS DOES NOT CHANGE THE PRICE OF PURCHASES, HOWEVER, I RECEIVE A SMALL COMMISSION TO HELP ME KEEP THIS BLOG ALIVE!

Scythe by Neal Shusterman – Spoiler Free Review

Review Header Image

Title: Scythe
Author: 
Neal Shusterman
Series Name: 
Arc of a Scythe
Genre: 
YA Sci-Fi
Publication Date: Nov 22nd, 2016
Pages: 443 (Paperback)
Publishers: Walker Books
Rating:
4 and a half star

Blog titles (20)

Thou shalt kill.

A world with no hunger, no disease, no war, no misery. Humanity has conquered all those things, and has even conquered death. Now scythes are the only ones who can end life—and they are commanded to do so, in order to keep the size of the population under control.

Citra and Rowan are chosen to apprentice to a scythe—a role that neither wants. These teens must master the “art” of taking life, knowing that the consequence of failure could mean losing their own.

scythe-book-cover-neal-shusterman

Blog titles (29)

I just love this book honestly. But the writing is definitely my favourite part. This book makes you question so many things. For one, you can vividly see how this could be us in the future, which is scary as hell honestly. There is a lot of discussions around morality and mortality/immortality in this book. It just basically makes you question everything and I loved it.

The world building is amazingly done. Like I said it is extremely vivid because of how close to reality it is but also all those differences just stand out. We basically learn through Citra & Rowan being bought into the world of the Scythes and also through the Scythe Journal Entires.

Speaking of the Scythe Journal Entries, I really enjoyed them. They always gave you that bit of background, something to think about and just let you dive a little deeper into the mind of that specific person.

Blog titles (30)

While the plot was a bit slower at times, there were enough twists and turns to keep me interested. Besides one major thing that I guessed before even picking up the book, the plot was not predictable. Whenever there was a twist, it was generally something extremely shocking and there was no way to prepare for that thing to happen!

Blog titles (31)

We follow two POV in this book, Citra & Rowan. While I did enjoy Citra as a character a bit more than Rowan, I did like reading from Rowan’s POV because of his situation.

Citra is a more of the strong and intelligent one and then Rowan is a little questionable at times. He goes through a tonne of character development and while I didn’t always agree with how that was turning out there were times when I 100% agreed with his choices.

As for the Scythes, we have our ‘good guys’ & our ‘bad guys’. Scythe Faraday was an interesting character and I enjoyed his methods. It just felt like there were more thought and reasoning behind Faraday’s choices than some of the others.
Scythe Curie is a wise woman and can usually judge what is best. She is loyal and caring and I really enjoyed her.

As for the ‘bad guys’, while I wouldn’t like them as people as they are horrible, I did enjoy them as characters. They were very well done and you couldn’t help but hate them. However, I did find myself agreeing with some of the main ‘bad guy’s opinions, I didn’t agree with his methods though. He also totally got what was coming for him.

The only weak point of this book is the romance. It quite simply didn’t feel natural. I found them connecting as characters but it kinda jumps straight into a potential romance and it just didn’t feel right.

Blog titles (32)

I loved everything about this book excluding the romance. It is such an interesting, unique and well developed world. The characters are amazingly done and the plot is a little slow but worth it for all the twists and turns throughout! Highly recommend.

Copy of Goodreads Synopsis

You can purchase a copy for yourself at any of the links below.

You could also use my affiliate links for Book DepositoryBooktopia or Angus & Robertson.

Book Depository
Paperback   /   Hardcover

Booktopia
Paperback   /   Hardcover

Angus & Robertson
Paperback   /   Hardcover

Amazon (Aus)
eBook   /   Paperback   /   Hardcover

Copy of Blog titles

HAVE YOU READ THIS BOOK? WHAT DID YOU THINK OF IT? LET ME KNOW IN THE COMMENTS.

Lizaxx1

PURCHASE ANY OF THE BOOKS MENTIONED FROM BOOK DEPOSITORY! WORLDWIDE FREE SHIPPING.
AUSSIE? WANT QUICK SHIPPING? AWESOME PRICES? WANT TO BE ABLE TO USE AFTERPAY? MAYBE TRY BOOKTOPIA OR EVEN ANGUS & ROBERTSON!
FACEBOOK    /    TWITTER    /    PERSONAL TWITTER    /    PINTEREST    /    INKY: @DUSKANGELREADS   /    INSTAGRAM  /    PERSONAL INSTAGRAM    /    GOODREADS    /    PHOTOGRAPHY TUMBLR   /    LITSY: DUSKANGELREADS
SOME OF THE LINKS ON MY BLOG ARE AFFILIATE LINKS. THIS DOES NOT CHANGE THE PRICE OF PURCHASES, HOWEVER, I RECEIVE A SMALL COMMISSION TO HELP ME KEEP THIS BLOG ALIVE!

This Mortal Coil by Emily Suvada – Spoiler Free Review

Review Header Image.png

Title: This Mortal Coil
Author: 
Emily Suvada
Series Name: 
This Mortal Coil
Genre: 
YA Sci-Fi
Publication Date: Nov 2nd, 2017
Pages: 450 (Paperback)
Publishers: Penguin Random House
Rating:

5 star

Blog titles (20)

When a lone soldier, Cole, arrives with news of Lachlan Agatta’s death, all hope seems lost for Catarina. Her father was the world’s leading geneticist, and humanity’s best hope of beating a devastating virus. Then, hidden beneath Cole’s genehacked enhancements she finds a message of hope: Lachlan created a vaccine.

Only she can find and decrypt it, if she can unravel the clues he left for her. The closer she gets, the more she finds herself at risk from Cartaxus, a shadowy organization with a stranglehold on the world’s genetic tech. But it’s too late to turn back.

There are three billion lives at stake, two people who can save them, and one final secret that Cat must unlock. A secret that will change everything.

9780141379272

Just picture the most epic book with more twists and turns than chapter headings that you know? Got one, cool, now picture that book on Steroids…. Ladies & Gentlemen I present…… This Mortal Coil.

Blog titles (29)

The only way I can describe this book is insane (in the best way possible).

The writing is amazing! This book hooks you from the first page and does not let you go! There are tonnes of brilliantly done world building. It is done in a way that you feel like you know everything you need to, but it was never excessive info dumping. Besides the world building that sets the scene at the beginning of the book we mostly learn as the main character learns new things. The world building was so vivid and I wasn’t left disappointed at all.

This book is pretty heavy on the coding/technology side of Sci-Fi. Which is something I personally don’t know jack crap about. However everything was very well explained in this book, I never found my self utterly confused about anything that was discussed in this book. Again it didn’t feel like info-dumping, we were given enough to understand what we needed to in that particular moment and then we moved along.

My only issue with this book is that I didn’t like the romance (I know, no surprise there, I just don’t like romance, but…). I simply felt like the two in the romance didn’t have chemistry between them. I kinda get it in some ways because of, well of everything I can’t talk about without spoiling you. But yeah I just didn’t feel an actual connection. There is also a love triangle, also didn’t enjoy that…

Blog titles (30)

I started This Mortal Coil before I started annotating my books and when I jumped back in I didn’t bother annotating only the last half of it. I’m so glad I made that choice! With the number of twists & turns in this book, I would have run out of orange sticky tabs easily (the colour I use for shocking/unexpected)!!!

This entire book is full of smaller things that are shocking and crazy. But then at the end it all comes together and is explained, to some degree. Everything had a purpose, it didn’t feel like plot twists just for the sake of plot twists! They had meaning and there was an overall plan from the beginning.

Absolutely love the plot! It kept me interested for the entire book!

Blog titles (31)

I really don’t feel like I can talk about the characters too much. Some of it would lead to spoilers & some I just can’t put into words because life in this book is confusing and all over the place and I don’t know what to think.

However, I do enjoy the characters, there are all so well done, even the questionable/bad guys. All the characters are fleshed out really well and each by themselves is interesting and unique.

Blog titles (32)

I loved nearly everything about this book! It is such an interesting world that is fully developed and explained amazingly. The characters are amazing as characters even if not all of them are amazing people. The plot was intense and a little crazy, okay a lot crazy. I can’t wait to get my hands on book two!!

Copy of Goodreads Synopsis

You can purchase a copy for yourself at any of the links below.

You could also use my affiliate links for Book DepositoryBooktopia or Angus & Robertson.

*There is an alternate cover for this book. I will insert it below. The Links with a * next to them are editions with the alternate cover*

Penguin Australia
Paperback

Book Depository
Paperback*

Booktopia
Hardcover*   /   Paperback

Angus & Robertson
Hardcover*   /   Paperback

Amazon (Aus)
eBook   /   Hardcover*   /   Paperback

Audible (Aus)
Audiobook

Alternate Cover:
this-mortal-coil-9781481496339_hr

Copy of Blog titles

HAVE YOU READ THIS BOOK? WHAT DID YOU THINK OF IT? LET ME KNOW IN THE COMMENTS.

Lizaxx1

PURCHASE ANY OF THE BOOKS MENTIONED FROM BOOK DEPOSITORY! WORLDWIDE FREE SHIPPING.
AUSSIE? WANT QUICK SHIPPING? AWESOME PRICES? WANT TO BE ABLE TO USE AFTERPAY? MAYBE TRY BOOKTOPIA OR EVEN ANGUS & ROBERTSON!
FACEBOOK    /    TWITTER    /    PERSONAL TWITTER    /    PINTEREST    /    INKY: @DUSKANGELREADS   /    INSTAGRAM  /    PERSONAL INSTAGRAM    /    GOODREADS    /    PHOTOGRAPHY TUMBLR   /    LITSY: DUSKANGELREADS
SOME OF THE LINKS ON MY BLOG ARE AFFILIATE LINKS. THIS DOES NOT CHANGE THE PRICE OF PURCHASES, HOWEVER, I RECEIVE A SMALL COMMISSION TO HELP ME KEEP THIS BLOG ALIVE!

Grace & Fury by Tracy Banghart – Spoiler Free Review

Review Header Image (2)

Title: Grace & Fury
Author: 
Tracy Banghart
Series Name: 
Grace & Fury
Genre: 
YA Fantasy
Publication Date: July 31st, 2018
Pages: 320 (Paperback)
Publishers: Hodder Children’s Books (Imprint of Hachette Australia)
Rating:
4 star

Blog titles (20)

Bold, brutal and beautiful, this is a must-read with the glitter and romance of The Selection and the thrilling action and intrigue of Red Queen.

In a world where women have no rights, sisters Serina and Nomi face two very different fates: one in the palace, the other on an island prison where women must fight to survive.

Serina has spent her whole life preparing to become a Grace – selected to stand by the heir to the throne as a shining example of the perfect woman.

But her headstrong and rebellious younger sister has a dangerous secret, and one wrong move could cost both sisters everything.

Can Serina fight? And will Nomi win?

9781444941951

Blog titles (29)

First I want to talk about the feminist situation. While I do agree that there are feminist ideals in this book, I don’t think that it was any more feminist than other books I have read that aren’t specifically labelled as feminist. I think because we are told from the start that this book is feminist I just noticed it more because I was looking for it. This wasn’t necessarily a bad thing but I just wanted to bring it up as this book is labelled as feminist every time I hear it talked about.

Now as for the actual writing, it was fine. I don’t have anything necessarily bad or good to say about it. The pacing was fine and it was a very quick and easy read but the writing also didn’t wow me in any way.

The world, however, is very well developed and vivid.

Blog titles (30)

Like I said in the writing section, the book was a quick mostly fast paced read. There were the odd slower bits but they weren’t enough to annoy me. There were plenty of twists and turns and for the most part, I didn’t see them coming. There was the odd time I had the feeling that something was off but couldn’t actually guess what it was until after it was revealed.

Blog titles (31)

I’ll only talk about the 2 MCs as I feel like talking about the others too much would mean being extremely vague or giving away spoilers even if it is just about the type of people they are.

Serina was my lesser favourite of the 2 sisters at the start but I did grow to enjoy her and liked her more in the end. While I didn’t necessarily agree with her all the time I mostly liked her as a character.

Nomi I enjoyed more in the start but liked less in the end because of her choices and the way she went about things. I guess she was just thinking of the bigger picture but then also risking a certain person she cares about alot?… That really didn’t make sense to me.

The romances were my least favourite part of the book. I won’t say names but I felt like one was slightly more realistic than the other. One felt like instalove, there was even one hint of marriage whereas the other had a little more building and wasn’t really love, more caring for each other and I don’t remember any proclamations of love from this couple. One of them was also slightly a love triangle as one of the girls has conflicting thoughts about who she should be attracted to. So my thoughts when said love triangle started developing were ‘please god no, I did not sign up for this crap!’.

Blog titles (32)

So while this wasn’t an absolute favourite, I did enjoy myself reading it and it was pretty easy and quick. There were things I liked and things I didn’t but hopefully book 2 will remedy some of those dislikes because I do find the world very interesting and developed and I do really want to see what happens next!

Trigger Warnings: Attempted sexual assault/rape.

Copy of Goodreads Synopsis

I was provided with an ARC of this book in exchange for an honest review. Thank you very much to Hachette Australia for this opportunity.

You can purchase a copy for yourself at any of the links below.

You could also use my affiliate links for Book DepositoryBooktopia or Angus & Robertson.

*There is an alternate cover for this book. I will insert it below. The Links with a * next to them are editions with the alternate cover*

Hachette Austalia
Paperback

Book Depository
Paperback

Booktopia
Paperback   /   Hardcover*

Angus & Robertson
Paperback   /   Hardcover*

Amazon (Aus)
Paperback   /   Hardcover*   /   eBook

Alternate Cover:
grace-and-fury

Copy of Blog titles

Have you read this book? What did you think of it? Let me know in the comments.

Lizaxx1

PURCHASE ANY OF THE BOOKS MENTIONED FROM BOOK DEPOSITORY! WORLDWIDE FREE SHIPPING.
AUSSIE? WANT QUICK SHIPPING? AWESOME PRICES? WANT TO BE ABLE TO USE AFTERPAY? MAYBE TRY BOOKTOPIA OR EVEN ANGUS & ROBERTSON!
FACEBOOK    /    TWITTER    /    PERSONAL TWITTER    /    PINTEREST    /    INKY: @DUSKANGELREADS   /    INSTAGRAM  /    PERSONAL INSTAGRAM    /    GOODREADS    /    PHOTOGRAPHY TUMBLR   /    LITSY: DUSKANGELREADS
SOME OF THE LINKS ON MY BLOG ARE AFFILIATE LINKS. THIS DOES NOT CHANGE THE PRICE OF PURCHASES, HOWEVER, I RECEIVE A SMALL COMMISSION TO HELP ME KEEP THIS BLOG ALIVE!

A Darker Shade of Magic by V.E. Schwab – Spoiler Free Review

Review Header Image (1)

Title: A Darker Shade of Magic
Author: 
V.E. Schwab
Series Name: 
Shades of Magic
Genre: 
YA Fantasy
Publication Date: Feb 27th, 2015
Pages: 384 (Paperback)
Publishers: Titan Books
Rating:
5 star

Blog titles (20)

Kell is one of the last Antari—magicians with a rare, coveted ability to travel between parallel Londons; Red, Grey, White, and, once upon a time, Black.

Kell was raised in Arnes—Red London—and officially serves the Maresh Empire as an ambassador, traveling between the frequent bloody regime changes in White London and the court of George III in the dullest of Londons, the one without any magic left to see.

Unofficially, Kell is a smuggler, servicing people willing to pay for even the smallest glimpses of a world they’ll never see. It’s a defiant hobby with dangerous consequences, which Kell is now seeing firsthand.

After an exchange goes awry, Kell escapes to Grey London and runs into Delilah Bard, a cut-purse with lofty aspirations. She first robs him, then saves him from a deadly enemy, and finally forces Kell to spirit her to another world for a proper adventure.

Now perilous magic is afoot, and treachery lurks at every turn. To save all of the worlds, they’ll first need to stay alive.

9781783295401

Blog titles (29)

“Hesitation is the death of advantage.”

This was my second experience with Victoria Schwab’s writing (first being the Monsters of Verity Duology). I enjoyed her writing when I first read one of her books, but I think I enjoyed it, even more, this time around. She has the ability to get to the point and move along quickly to keep the book feeling well paced but also takes enough time to build and develop the world and characters. She created a very vivid world (well worlds, plural,  actually) in this book. However, it was in no way info dumping. We gradually learn about each London and it’s done in a way that feels natural rather than just for the sack of world building.

I also really enjoyed the way the characters were introduced and developed. Even in this first book of the series all the characters we meet feel fleshed out and realistic. Nothing felt forced or fake about these characters or their relationships with each other.

This is also a book that has the right amount of romance for me. As in very little. In A Darker Shade of Magic, not once did I feel like the romance was taking over the plot of the book. It felt natural and for once the characters were more focused on the world ending than their relationship. That is a pet hate for me in YA books. Characters just go off and do romantic or sexual crap when the world is falling apart around them, yet they claim to be helping. That was not the case in this book. The characters had their priorities straight for once!

Blog titles (30)

In the beginning, the plot was a little slow. However, it was done well. In the beginning, the author is setting the scene and things are happening but you can’t make the connections. Then at around 1/4 of the way into the book, we dive straight into the action. From then on out the book is full of action, mystery & twists and turns.

“I’d rather die on an adventure than live standing still.”

Blog titles (31)

First off me have Lila, who I loved and also she reminded me or myself. For one thing, she has a sarcastic attitude, which is totally me. She is also funny at the perfect times, which while I’m not going to toot my own horn by saying I’m the same, I do amuse myself with my well-timed jokes, whether other people find it funny, well I don’t particularly care haha.

“I apologize for anything I might have done. I was not myself.”
“I apologize for shooting you in the leg.” said Lila. “I was myself entirely.”

She also has an awesome attitude to life. She doesn’t let anyone tell her what she can’t do, she takes opportunities when they come along and she tries to live life to the fullest even if that means risking her own neck.

“I’m not going to die,” she said. “Not till I’ve seen it.”
“Seen what?”
Her smile widened. “Everything.”

Next, we have Kell who is such an amazing character. He is one of those characters that is just straight out good. He is caring, loving and protective even when he doesn’t know people fully. His relationship with his brother Rhy is amazing! I love strong family dynamics in books and even though the whole situation between them is a little rough they care about each other fiercely. They try and keep each other on the right track (even if it doesn’t always work) and they protect each other with everything they have.

Kell wore a very peculiar coat.

It had neither one side, which would be conventional, nor two, which would be unexpected, but several, which was, of course, impossible.

Rhy, Kell’s brother, we only actually see a couple times in the book. However, in that short time we do, I really liked him. Like I said above I really enjoy his and Kell’s relationship. He is another simply good guy in this book (There were 3). He is kinda sweet an innocent some of the time but then he is also a bit of a troublemaker and wants to have fun. He is also just so nice and cares so much.

Holland is a questionable character. While I don’t agree with some of the things he does, I don’t hate him either. He is a mysterious character and I hope we get to learn more about him.

Lastly, I want to talk about Barron, who only have a small role in the book. I loved him! He is my 3rd good guy type character. He is so nice and just wants to help those in need. He is one of those people that would do anything to help someone even if he doesn’t really know them. What happened to him throughout the book killed me, like a lot. I won’t say anything more as I don’t want to spoil anyone.

Blog titles (32)

Overall I really enjoyed this book. There is nothing I can complain about or that I didn’t enjoy. The writing, world building, character development and plot are all amazing. The characters are so well done and just amazing people! I love it!
I did read this as part of the A Darker Shade of ReadALongs which is hosted by Common Spence on YouTube. So I won’t be reading Book 2 until next month! Which kinda sucks as I want to start it right now, but I will wait so I don’t get confused with what happens in which book during the discussion!

She considered him a moment before answering. “Delilah Bard,” she said. “But Lila will do.” Lila. A soft name but she used it like a knife, slashing out on the first syllable, the second barely a whisper of metal through air.

Copy of Goodreads Synopsis

You can purchase a copy for yourself at any of the links below.
*There is an alternate cover for this book. I will insert it below. The Links with a * next to them are editions with the alternate cover*

You could also use my affiliate links for Book Depository, Booktopia or Angus & Robertson.

Book Depository
Paperback   //   Paperback*   //   Hardcover*

Booktopia
Paperback   //   Paperback*   //   Hardcover*   //   Hardcover Collector’s Edition   //   Hardcover Collector’s Edition*

Angus & Robertson
Paperback   //   Paperback*   //   Hardcover*   //   Hardcover Collector’s Edition   //   Hardcover Collector’s Edition*

Amazon (Aus)
Kindle   //   Paperback   //   Hardcover*

Scribd (Available in Australia – there is no way I can see if it is available elsewhere)
eBook

Alternate cover:

A Darker Shade final for Irene

Copy of Blog titles

HAVE YOU READ THIS BOOK? WHAT ARE YOUR THOUGHTS ON IT?!

IF YOU ARE GOING TO SHARE SPOILERS IN THE COMMENTS THEN PLEASE WARN IT SO OTHERS DON’T GET SPOILED!

Lizaxx1

Purchase any of the books mentioned from Book Depository! World Wide Free Shipping.
Aussie? Want quick shipping? Awesome prices? Want to be able to use AfterPay? Maybe try Booktopia or even Angus & Robertson!
FACEBOOK    /    TWITTER    /    PERSONAL TWITTER    /    PINTEREST    /    INKY: @DUSKANGELREADS   /    INSTAGRAM  /    PERSONAL INSTAGRAM    /    GOODREADS    /    PHOTOGRAPHY TUMBLR   /    LITSY: DUSKANGELREADS
SOME OF THE LINKS ON MY BLOG ARE AFFILIATE LINKS. THIS DOES NOT CHANGE THE PRICE OF PURCHASES, HOWEVER, I RECEIVE A SMALL COMMISSION TO HELP ME KEEP THIS BLOG ALIVE!

LIFEL1K3 by Jay Kristoff – Spoiler Free Review

Review Header Image (9)

Title: LIFEL1K3
Author: 
Jay Kristoff
Series Name: 
Lifelike
Genre: 
YA Sci-Fi
Publication Date: May 29th, 2018
Pages: 398 (Paperback)
Publishers: Allen & Unwin
Rating:
3 and a half star

Blog titles (20)

On a floating junkyard beneath a radiation sky, a deadly secret lies buried in the scrap.

Eve isn’t looking for secrets—she’s too busy looking over her shoulder. The robot gladiator she’s just spent six months building has been reduced to a smoking wreck, and the only thing keeping her Grandpa from the grave was the fistful of credits she just lost to the bookies. To top it off, she’s discovered she can destroy electronics with the power of her mind, and the puritanical Brotherhood are building a coffin her size. If she’s ever had a worse day, Eve can’t remember it.

But when Eve discovers the ruins of an android boy named Ezekiel in the scrap pile she calls home, her entire world comes crashing down. With her best friend Lemon Fresh and her robotic conscience, Cricket, in tow, she and Ezekiel will trek across deserts of irradiated glass, infiltrate towering megacities and scour the graveyard of humanity’s greatest folly to save the ones Eve loves, and learn the dark secrets of her past.

Even if those secrets were better off staying buried.

9781760295691

If you don’t follow me on Insta or my youtube then you may not know, but I have started annotating my books. So for that reason, I can easily find quotes I remember and can easily add them to my reviews. So my reviews from now on will have quotes throughout. Well for books I read physically or eBooks anyway as I can tab & underline real books and highlight on eBooks. Audiobook however are a lot harder unless you are following along in the book at all times.

Blog titles (29)

Okay, so the writing is the main reason that this book got such a low rating. I HATED this writing. It made it so damn hard to read & this book took me nearly double the time it usually would for a book this size.

First off we have the slang. I’m okay with slang in books BUT it needs to be explained! Don’t just throw words in that we have no idea the meaning of without explaining it! It’s infuriating and you spend more time trying to guess the meaning than concentrating on enjoying the book. One of the main slang words, “Fizzy”  was explained but it wasn’t until past halfway through the book, so I spent over 200 pages have no bloody idea what that word meant.
Then there was the spelling!! So many words were deliberately spelt incorrectly. I guess the author was trying to make it seem that the characters weren’t that educated, I have no clue! But the incorrect spelling really messed with the flow of the book as it just puts you off when reading. Without meaning too I started picking out every one of them and thinking about the incorrect vs correct spelling. It just ruins the flow because you’re unintentionally concentrating on the incorrect spelling of the words than just going with the flow of the book. Books need a good flow!

Here are two examples of the spelling:
“Kalifornya”
“Skillz”

My last writing complaint was that the humour, especially Lemon’s, a lot of the time felt forced. There were some actually funny things but the rest of the time it felt like the author was just forcing her to be funny.

My only like about the writing of this book was there were a fair few good quotes thrown in this book.

“…but there’s nothing quite the same as sitting with a real book in your hands. Breathing in the ink and feeling all those wonderful lives beneath your fingertips. In between the pages, I’m an emperor. An adventurer. A warrior and a wanderer. In between the pages I’m not myself – and more myself than in any other place on earth.”

Overall the writing was just annoying, made it difficult to read & messed with the flow of the book.

Also, there is the fact that the Australian paperback edition of the book that I have has American English spelling rather than Australian English. Things like this are a pet hate for me. And before anyone makes this comment, yes I know the book is set in America, well Kalifornya, however, would you expect a book set in Japan to only be in Japenese to make it accurate to the book? No, because there would be a Japanese edition, in Japenese & then other editions in other languages. If there is a US edition of a book then it should be in American Eglish, but if there is an Australian Edition, it should be in Australian English..

Blog titles (30)

I actually really enjoyed the plot of the book. It was very action packed, so you were always on your toes. There were tonnes of twists and turns, so it kept you guessing & most of the time it was unpredictable. There were a couple smaller things I guessed but most of the big plot points were unpredictable to me.

Blog titles (31)

Firstly I didn’t love the main character, Eve. She was just annoying at times. Besides that I don’t really know why I don’t like her, I just couldn’t connect to her like I did the other characters in the book.

Lemon Fresh, I loved. Even with the forced humour, I talked about in the Writing section. Lemon is funny, sarcastic, loyal and fierce. She is just such an amazing female character and I did mostly enjoy her friendship with Eve.

“I’ve been thinking about what you said,” Lemon declared. “About whether your past makes you what you are. That’s all our memories are, right? The pieces of our yesterdays that make us who we are today?”

“So you’ve had some bad days, no doubt,” Lemon said. “But I figure, instead of letting your yesterdays bring you down, maybe you can concentrate on building some happier memories today. And that way you’ll have them for tomorrow?”

Crick was awesome too. He is sarcastic, a little aggressive at times but relentlessly protective. Well, he tried, 3/4 of the time they didn’t listen to him, but he tried to be the voice of reason.

 “My vocab software lacks the capacity to describe how disgusted I am right now.”

Also

“You know, democracy sounds like a great idea until you spend three minutes with the average voter.”

Also, Kaiser, he doesn’t talk as he is a dog, but I cannot not mention him!! He is precious.

Then there is Ezekiel who is my least favourite of the side characters  Again I can’t really pinpoint why I don’t like him. The romance is the main thing as I simply didn’t care for it. Half the time it feels one-sided, with one person obsessively in love and the other questioning if it really is love or just lust. Also, it felt insta lovey even if it wasn’t. We see the romance in kinda flashbacks of sorts. These flashbacks are skipping through time quickly, so one moment they meet and the next they are in love. So even though I know there was time between then, because I didn’t actually see that development, it felt like insta love.

Lastly, we have Grandpa, Silas. He is a grumpy dying old man but also very caring and loveable.

“How’s the cough? You take your meds? How much you got left?”

“Fine. Yes. Plenty.” Grandpa scowled. “Although I sometimes hear this annoying voice in the back of my head, speaking at me like I was a three-year-old. Is that normal?”

“Eve leaned down and kissed her Grandpa’s cheek. “You know the whole loveable grouch thing? Really working for you.”

Blog titles (32)

There are parts I really love about this book and parts I really didn’t. Most of the side characters are amazing and the plot was spot on. But the writing just made it so hard for me to absolutely love this book and like I said I didn’t love the MC or the romance.

“Grandpa said it’s always better to be shot at for who you are than hugged for who you aren’t.”

Also Trigger Warnings: Detailed family murder, suicide & suicide attempts, detailed descriptions of someone suffering from Cancer, animal injury & animal death. 

Copy of Goodreads Synopsis

You can purchase a copy for yourself at any of the links below.

There are alternate covers, as you can see below. There will be a ‘*’ next to editions with the gold cover & “+” next to the editions with the red cover.

Book Depository
Paperback   /   Paperback+

Booktopia
Paperback   /   Paperback+   /   Hardcover*

Angus & Robertson
Paperback   /   Paperback+   /   Hardcover*

Amazon (Aus)
Paperback   /   Hardcover*   /   eBook

Alternate Covers:

Copy of Goodreads Synopsis

HAVE YOU READ THIS BOOK? WHAT ARE YOUR THOUGHTS ON IT?!

IF YOU ARE GOING TO SHARE SPOILERS IN THE COMMENTS THEN PLEASE WARN IT SO OTHERS DON’T GET SPOILED!

Lizaxx1

Purchase any of the books mentioned from Book Depository! World Wide Free Shipping.

Aussie? Want quick shipping? Awesome prices? Want to be able to use AfterPay? Maybe try Booktopia or even Angus & Robertson!

FACEBOOK    /    TWITTER    /    PERSONAL TWITTER    /    PINTEREST    /    VERO: DUSK ANGEL READS    /    INSTAGRAM  /    PERSONAL INSTAGRAM    /    GOODREADS    /    PHOTOGRAPHY TUMBLR   /    LITSY: DUSKANGELREADS
SOME OF THE LINKS ON MY BLOG ARE AFFILIATE LINKS. THIS DOES NOT CHANGE THE PRICE OF PURCHASES, HOWEVER, I RECEIVE A SMALL COMMISSION TO HELP ME KEEP THIS BLOG ALIVE!