Empire of Storms by Sarah J. Maas

“The long path to the throne has only just begun for Aelin Galathynius. Loyalties have been broken and bought, friends have been lost and gained, and those who possess magic find themselves at odds with those who don’t.

As the kingdoms of Erilea fracture around her, enemies must become allies if Aelin is to keep those she loves from falling to the dark forces poised to claim her world. With war looming on all horizons, the only chance for salvation lies in a desperate quest that may mark the end of everything Aelin holds dear.

Aelin’s journey from assassin to queen has entranced millions across the globe, and this fifth installment will leave fans breathless. Will Aelin succeed in keeping her world from splintering, or will it all come crashing down?”

-Synopsis taken from Goodreads

Hey guys! Meaghan here, back again with another review! I’ve been reading Empire of Storms the month of September, and finished just now! I don’t think I need to explain here, as you’ll see in my review just how much I loved it!

“Aelin Galathynius, Queen of Terrasen, knew the time would soon come to prove just how much she’d bleed for Erilea.”

Stars (Out of 10): This book made it’s own scale entirely, it’s so good it doesn’t even apply to it

Overall Thoughts: Oh my ever loving gods, THIS BOOK! I waited so long for this book, and I was not disappointed in the slightest. Yes, it took me a whole month to finish this book, and yes it has been a long long while since a book has (actively) taken me this long to finish, but that was just because I didn’t want the waiting to begin, didn’t want to lose one of my favorite series (tied with ACOTAR) again for another year. Every single thing in this book surprised me in the best way possible. Everything has begun to come full circle, and all this build up from the series is starting to mean something. This book made me love almost every character more for many various reasons, and the world was revealed to us in a million more stories and flashbacks, and I am so ready to see where this all leads. Sarah J Maas is, without a doubt, my favorite author of all time, and this book only solidified that position.

SPOILERS BEGIN HERE

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The Bronze Key by Holly Black and Cassandra Clare

Magic can save you.
Magic can kill you.

Students at the Magisterium are supposed to be safe. Under the watchful eyes of the mages, they are taught to use magic to bring order to a chaotic world.

But now the chaos is fighting back. Call, Tamara, and Aaron should be worrying about things like pop quizzes and magic contests. Instead, after the shocking death of one of their classmates, they must track down a sinister killer… and risk their own lives in the process.

As Call, Tamara, and Aaron discover, magic can only be as good as the person who wields it. In evil hands, it has the capacity to do immeasurable harm, unless it is stopped in time.

In this striking third book of Magisterium, bestselling authors Holly Black and Cassandra Clare present us with a school where anything, good or evil, can happen, and the only way to unlock the truth is to risk everything to find it.”

-Synopsis taken from Goodreads

Hey guys! Meaghan back again with another review! I finally got around to reading the newest installment in the Magisterium series, and my thoughts are below!

“That’s what heroes did. They ran straight toward danger and didn’t ever give up.”

Stars (Out of 10): 4/10 Stars

Overall Thoughts: While I enjoyed this installment in the series, and where it went to with the ending, it was by far my least favorite in the series. I didn’t see as much humor in the book, missing that spark of laughter the first two had. I also felt it was missing the constant action of the first book, dedicated instead to only constant build-up, which can be a tad boring sometimes. I still enjoyed it though, and am super curious to see where the rest of the series goes!

SPOILERS BEGIN HERE

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Red Queen by Victoria Aveyard

This is a world divided by blood – red or silver.

The Reds are commoners, ruled by a Silver elite in possession of god-like superpowers. And to Mare Barrow, a seventeen-year-old Red girl from the poverty-stricken Stilts, it seems like nothing will ever change.

That is, until she finds herself working in the Silver Palace. Here, surrounded by the people she hates the most, Mare discovers that, despite her red blood, she possesses a deadly power of her own. One that threatens to destroy the balance of power.

Fearful of Mare’s potential, the Silvers hide her in plain view, declaring her a long-lost Silver princess, now engaged to a Silver prince. Despite knowing that one misstep would mean her death, Mare works silently to help the Red Guard, a militant resistance group, and bring down the Silver regime.

But this is a world of betrayal and lies, and Mare has entered a dangerous dance – Reds against Silvers, prince against prince, and Mare against her own heart.”

-Synopsis taken from Goodreads

Hey guys! Meaghan here again with another review! I absolutely loved this book, and am glad I followed the hype! Definitely recommend!

“The gods rule us still. They have come down from the stars. And they are no longer kind.”

Stars (Out of 10): 10/10 Stars

Overall Thoughts: I ABSOLUTELY LOVED THIS BOOK!! It was everything I needed at the moment. Some good high fantasy always gets me out of my small reading ruts! I fell in love with the characters almost right away, with Mare even in the first chapter! The plot also kept me incredibly hooked, and I found the pages almost flipped themselves with how entranced I was by this book. The world building was also phenomenal as it explained the facets of this strange, new society, and explained both the Red culture and Silver culture. Such a great read, that I definitely do recommend to readers of high fantasy!

SPOILERS BEGIN HERE

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The Surrendered by Case Maynard

“After a financial collapse devastates the United States, the new government imposes a tax on the nation’s most valuable resource—the children.

Surrendered at age ten—after her parents could no longer afford her exorbitant fees—Vee Delancourt has spent six hard years at the Mills, alongside her twin, Oliver. With just a year to freedom, they do what they can to stay off the Master’s radar. But when Vee discovers unspeakable things happening to the younger girls in service, she has no choice but to take a stand—a decision that lands her on the run and outside the fence for the first time since the System robbed her of her liberty.

Vee knows the Master will stop at nothing to prove he holds ultimate authority over the Surrendered. But when he makes a threat that goes beyond what even she considers possible, she accepts the aid of an unlikely group of allies. Problem is, with opposing factions gunning for the one thing that might save them all, Vee must find a way to turn oppression and desperation into hope and determination—or risk failing all the children and the brother she left behind.”

-Synopsis taken from Goodreads

Meaghan here with another Netgalley book! Really been liking these lately! Haven’t had one bad one yet!

I received this book from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review!

Stars (Out of 10): 9/10 Stars

Overall Thoughts: This book actually made me want to start reading Dystopian again. I have read so much of the same thing over and over, that it felt like dystopia was just a formula that writers kept filling in with different names and backstories. Over time, without really meaning to, I stopped reading as much dystopia as I once did. However, this book seemed almost like a breath of fresh air! It didn’t end with everything be overthrown (yet), or the main character being the chosen one or something. All the characters seemed to be important actually, which is also something I really like, since I sometimes find Dystopia to mainly stress the importance of the main character and no one else. Overall, a good and strong read, with tons of interesting plot twists and events to keep interest up!

SPOILERS BEGIN HERE

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Jess, Chunk, and the Road Trip to Infinity by Kristin Elizabeth Clark

“The last time Jess saw her father, she was a boy. Now she’s a high school graduate, soon to be on her way to art school. But first she has some unfinished business with her dad. So she’s driving halfway across the country to his wedding. He happens to be marrying her mom’s ex-best friend. It’s not like Jess wasn’t invited; she was. She just never told anyone she was coming. Surprise!

Luckily, Jess isn’t making this trip alone. Her best friend, Christophe-nicknamed Chunk-is joining her.

Along the way, Jess and Chunk learn a few things about themselves-and each other-which call their feelings about their relationship into question.”

-Synopsis taken from Goodreads

Hey guys! Meaghan here again, with another book review for a read to review book! This does deal with LGBTQ conflicts, and I am not involved enough in that community (as in I do not have first-hand experience with the conflict, but still support the issues that everyone faces), so I do not feel it is my place to comment on how this book handled it compared to real life, so my review is restricted more to elements of the plot and story, and characters themselves separated from how the community was portrayed in the story. On with the review!

Stars (Out of 10): 5.5/10 Stars

Overall Thoughts: I have quite mixed thoughts about this book. It seemed to build up for one case, when suddenly not, with the narrator being an unreliable one. I also found myself liking the characters less and less as the book continued on, finding myself more annoyed with some of the things that made me like them at first. I did like the realisticness of the personalities at points though, and like where the book led to as it ended, although it did end very abruptly.

SPOILERS BEGIN HERE

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Hello, Goodbye, and Everything in Between by Jennifer E. Smith

“On the night before they leave for college, Clare and Aidan only have one thing left to do: figure out whether they should stay together or break up. Over the course of twelve hours, they’ll retrace the steps of their relationship, trying to find something in their past that might help them decide what their future should be. The night will lead them to friends and family, familiar landmarks and unexpected places, hard truths and surprising revelations. But as the clock winds down and morning approaches, so does their inevitable goodbye. The question is, will it be goodbye for now or goodbye forever?”

-Synopsis taken from Goodreads

Hey guys! Meaghan here again! So I always find it really nice to break up some more intense series and books by throwing a book by Jennifer E. Smith in there every once in a while, and it ended up being exactly what I needed now too!

“The only thing harder than leaving is being left behind.”

Stars (Out of 10): 10/10 Stars

Overall Thoughts: This book really hit hard, since I’m in a long-distance relationship myself. I related to the deciding, and while it was never as open conversation wise as here, I remember talking about it and figuring out how to work around the problems. I was the Aidan in the beginning, wanting to try without thinking of the consequences, so I actually thought his character was pretty accurate in that thinking. This book was also extremely realistic in all aspects of it, which I won’t go into detail of here due to spoilers. A great, yet very emotional, read.

SPOILERS BEGIN HERE

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The Girl in the City by Philip Harris

“With the oppressive Transport Authority controlling every aspect of their existence, Leah and her father do what they can to carve a good life for themselves. Leah spends her nights scavenging in the rural zone around the City, risking capture by the Wild Ones as she hunts for salvage her father can trade for food and other essentials.

But when Leah takes a bag of salvage from a dying stranger, she and her father are drawn into the world of Transport and its war against the terrorist organization, TRACE.

A war that could cost them both their lives.

The Girl in the City is a standalone science fiction novella set in the world of Michael Bunker’s Pennsylvania.”

-Synopsis taken from Goodreads

Hey guys! Meaghan back again, this time with a short story! I usually don’t review the short stories/novellas I read, since there is often very little to review, but this one caught my eye on Netgalley!

I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review through NetGalley!

Stars (Out of 10): 8/10 Stars

Overall Thoughts: Since this was a fairly short novella, I didn’t necessarily expect the author to be able to craft too fantastical of a story, but what this author was able to create in 80 pages ended up really surprising me! It was a quick but great read, and exceeded my expectations in every way! While the end wasn’t a twist, it definitely wasn’t expected, and that was one of my favorite parts! Overall an enjoyable read that I would definitely recommend! (Also love the new cover!)

SPOILERS BEGIN HERE

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The Winner’s Curse by Marie Rutkoski

Winning what you want may cost you everything you love…

As a general’s daughter in a vast empire that revels in war and enslaves those it conquers, seventeen-year-old Kestrel has two choices: she can join the military or get married. But Kestrel has other intentions.

One day, she is startled to find a kindred spirit in a young slave up for auction. Arin’s eyes seem to defy everything and everyone. Following her instinct, Kestrel buys him—with unexpected consequences. It’s not long before she has to hide her growing love for Arin.

But he, too, has a secret, and Kestrel quickly learns that the price she paid for a fellow human is much higher than she ever could have imagined.

Set in a richly imagined new world, The Winner’s Curse by Marie Rutkoski is a story of deadly games where everything is at stake, and the gamble is whether you will keep your head or lose your heart.”

-Synopsis taken from Goodreads

Hey guys! Meaghan here again! I recently picked up this series, and decided to start it now!

“The truth can deceive as well as a lie.”

Stars (Out of 10): 9.5/10

Overall Thoughts: This was definitely a great book to end my reading slump with. It was extremely unique from the recent books I read in my opinion, from the inner battles the characters faced, to how the plot was carried out, and the state the world was in at the time. I also enjoyed the writing style of the book, as it kept me drawn in when so many books have been unable to for a while now!

SPOILERS BEGIN HERE

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Ignite Me by Taherah Mafi

The heart-stopping conclusion to the New York Times bestselling Shatter Me series, which Ransom Riggs, bestselling author of Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children, called “a thrilling, high-stakes saga of self-discovery and forbidden love.”

With Omega Point destroyed, Juliette doesn’t know if the rebels, her friends, or even Adam are alive. But that won’t keep her from trying to take down The Reestablishment once and for all. Now she must rely on Warner, the handsome commander of Sector 45. The one person she never thought she could trust. The same person who saved her life. He promises to help Juliette master her powers and save their dying world . . . but that’s not all he wants with her.

The Shatter Me series is perfect for fans who crave action-packed young adult novels with tantalizing romance like Divergent by Veronica Roth, The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins, and Legend by Marie Lu. Tahereh Mafi has created a captivating and original story that combines the best of dystopian and paranormal, and was praised by Publishers Weekly as “a gripping read from an author who’s not afraid to take risks.” Now this final book brings the series to a shocking and satisfying end.”

-Synopsis taken from Goodreads

Hey guys! I decided to re-read this book a few days ago, and relive the magic it gave me while reading it the first time!

“Don’t do that,” he says. “Don’t ask me questions you already know the answers to. Twice I’ve laid myself bare to you and all it’s gotten me was a bullet wound and a broken heart. Don’t torture me,” he says, meeting my eyes again.

“It’s a cruel thing to do, even to someone like me.”

Stars (Out of 10): 10/10 Stars

Overall Thoughts: I forgot the reasons why this has been one of my favorite books for so long, and reading it again only solidified that, rather than lowering my opinion of it. The way Mafi writes is so unique, and so emotional, that it completely draws us in and puts us in tune with the characters emotions. Her characters are also magnificent and so diverse, from the comedic relief but still deep Kenji, to a broken but strong Juliette, and to the morally ambiguous Aaron, who has learned how to deal with his hardships in the only way he can. This book will never bore me, no matter how many times I read it or how well I know what will happen next, and will continue to stay on my list of favorites for years to come. Overall a great finale to one of my favorite series.

SPOILERS BEGIN HERE

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Sweet Temptation by Wendy Higgins

“Bad boy Kaidan Rowe has never wanted for anything—money, popularity, musical talent…hot girls—but seducing them is part of his duty as a Nephilim, slave to the demon Dukes. As the son of the Duke of Lust, Kaidan has learned his father’s ways, becoming a master of passion, a manipulator of chemistry. Disobeying his father would mean certain death. Thankfully for Kaidan, he’s good at his job. And he enjoys it.

Until he meets Anna Whitt—smart, feisty, and inexplicably good—the one girl seemingly immune to his charms. The daughter of a guardian angel and a fallen one, she makes him wish for more than he could ever deserve.

Determined to save all the Neph from their dark lives, Anna joins forces with Kaidan to overcome the Dukes’ oppressive ways. In the light of her affections, Kaidan must undergo his toughest test of all, a battle of the heart.

Sensual and swoonworthy, this companion volume to the Sweet Evil series, told from the perspective of the mysterious Kaidan Rowe, gives readers revealing insights into the true emotions that drive him.”

-Synopsis taken from Goodreads

Hey guys! Finally finished the final book of the Sweet Evil series, Sweet Temptation! This book is basically the entire series in Kaidan’s point of view. However, without reading the original Sweet Trilogy first, this book won’t make much sense since it doesn’t fully elaborate on the actually plot!

“I think Anna Whitt is bad for my health.”

Stars (Out of 10): 8/10 Stars

Overall Thoughts: I thought this book would feel like a useless addition to the series, but it actually gave way more of insight into Kaidan’s character, as well as embellished on points not fully explained in the original trilogy. The epilogue was also way more general, and focused on the after as a whole, not a specific scene in the future, so I felt we got a much more complete ending to the series.

SPOILERS BEGIN HERE

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