Rating: 4.5 STARS
How I got this book: ARC from Simon and Schuster UK Children's via NetGalley
Welcome to the cursed town of Sparrow…
Where, two centuries ago, three sisters were sentenced to death for witchery. Stones were tied to their ankles and they were drowned in the deep waters surrounding the town.
Now, for a brief time each summer, the sisters return, stealing the bodies of three weak-hearted girls so that they may seek their revenge, luring boys into the harbor and pulling them under.
Like many locals, seventeen-year-old Penny Talbot has accepted the fate of the town. But this year, on the eve of the sisters’ return, a boy named Bo Carter arrives; unaware of the danger he has just stumbled into.
Mistrust and lies spread quickly through the salty, rain-soaked streets. The townspeople turn against one another. Penny and Bo suspect each other of hiding secrets. And death comes swiftly to those who cannot resist the call of the sisters.
But only Penny sees what others cannot. And she will be forced to choose: save Bo, or save herself.
This book was NOT what I expected....but in the best possible way.
The book intrigued me from the start; witches, a centuries old curse and a little town called Sparrow - sounds perfect, right?
This book dragged me under really quickly. The story was quick paced and addictive. It sort of got under my skin in that I couldn't stop thinking about it even when I wasn't reading it. If I'd had the time I'd probably have devoured this in one sitting.
What I did not expect was the mind blowing revelation towards the end of the book. It was exceptionally clever to the point where I thought I'd spotted something earlier on in the book but the author then convinced me that I was wrong until BAM, at the end I was just shocked.
At his point I wanted to re-read the entire thing to see what I'd missed!
Then all the unanswered questions were revealed and I think my poor brain may have melted by this point.
This book has the perfect mixture of creepy, mystery and romance to make it really good and I loved the flitting narrative between past and present events.
The main character is so compelling, she gets under your skin and then tears you up so you don't know what to think or who to root for.
I'm giving this 4.5 stars because the characters and the plot twists were brilliant...I'm just a little torn about the ending. I can understand the author's choice, I'm just not 100% sure I'm happy with it!
Overall, I can highly recommend this to lovers of fantasy and mystery!
Rating: 5 STARS!
How I got this book: Bought
Love speaks in flowers. Truth requires thorns.
Travel to a world of dark bargains struck by moonlight, of haunted towns and hungry woods, of talking beasts and gingerbread golems, where a young mermaid's voice can summon deadly storms and where a river might do a lovestruck boy's bidding but only for a terrible price.
Inspired by myth, fairy tale, and folklore, #1 New York Times–bestselling author Leigh Bardugo has crafted a deliciously atmospheric collection of short stories filled with betrayals, revenge, sacrifice, and love.
Perfect for new readers and dedicated fans, these tales will transport you to lands both familiar and strange—to a fully realized world of dangerous magic that millions have visited through the novels of the Grishaverse.
This collection of six stories includes three brand-new tales, all of them lavishly illustrated with art that changes with each turn of the page, culminating in six stunning full-spread illustrations as rich in detail as the stories themselves.
Confession time! I completely bought this book because of it's cover. I mean, it's one of the prettiest books I've ever seen.
The hardcover and the illustrations inside are stunning! I particularly love the unique way in which the illustrations reveal new pieces of the story as you read before culminating in a large, completely gorgeous scene at the end of each short story.
I don't typically enjoy short stories as I usually need more time to connect with a character but these stories drag you under in a matter of sentences.
The world and character building is flawless, the morals are fantastic and the imagery, both visually and written is beautiful.
I love the interwoven details and themes from the fairytales we grew up with, but I love how these stories explore darker themes that are skimmed over in the child-friendly versions. Don't expect handsome princes and helpful animals in these stories; although some do talk.
Expect mystery, spine-tingling danger and difficult choices within fantasy worlds where our heroes have to battle against evil in all it's forms.
I can't even begin to choose a favourite tale. I loved each and every one and I will most definitely be re-reading these stories for years to come.
A running theme through these stories is strong, powerful women in one form or another, and I love it!
This is my first Leigh Bardugo book and I'm chomping at the bit for more! A glittering 5 stars from me!
Rating: 5 STARS!
Standalone/Series: Standalone (although I'd personally recommend reading Simon vs The Homo Sapiens Agenda first)
How I got this book: Bought
Seventeen-year-old Molly Peskin-Suso knows all about unrequited love-she's lived through it twenty-six times. She crushes hard and crushes often, but always in secret. Because no matter how many times her twin sister, Cassie, tells her to woman up, Molly can't stomach the idea of rejection. So she's careful. Fat girls always have to be careful.
Then a cute new girl enters Cassie's orbit, and for the first time ever, Molly's cynical twin is a lovesick mess. Meanwhile, Molly's totally not dying of loneliness-except for the part where she is.
Luckily, Cassie's new girlfriend comes with a cute hipster-boy sidekick. Will is funny, flirtatious, and just might be perfect crush material. Maybe more than crush material. And if Molly can win him over, she'll get her first kiss and she'll get her twin back.
There's only one problem: Molly's coworker, Reid. He's an awkward Tolkien superfan, and there's absolutely no way Molly could fall for him. Right?
Crush number 28 - Book of the epic feels, Molly of the so damn familiar it'd be creepy if it wasn't so awesome!
Reading this book was really surreal. Have you ever read a book and felt as though it was written just for you? That's what this book felt like.
I felt like Molly every single day of my life growing up and now isn't that much different. I have serious body confidence issues, I'm anxious, self-doubting and really introverted. Reading about Molly took me right back to being an insecure teenager, to all those unrequited crushes, the feelings of not knowing who I was or where I belonged, feeling like the very last person in the race when it came to first kisses, first love and all the stuff that follows.
Thankfully, when I was 17 I met my very own Tolkien obsessed, adorably geeky Reid-type and I'm also really close with my sister (much more so now than we were as kids).
I love this author's work. The way she perfectly encapsulates a character and makes them relatable to you, makes you invest in them and care about what they're going through. On that note, if you haven't read Simon vs The Homo Sapien's Agenda, you really really should, especially before you read this, because even while it's a standalone it's set in the same 'world' and features some of the characters including Simon himself!
I love how Becky Albertalli supports and advocates for the LGTBQ+ community in all of her work. It's refreshing, realistic and just pure awesome!!
Molly is relatable (I think I've already mentioned that), she's sweet and compelling. Her relationship with her sister is tangible and develops throughout the story along with Molly's own character.
This book is packed full of feels, and my face is tired from a whirlwind of expressions, mostly the goofy smile I couldn't shake for hours afterwards!
I can't wait to read the next book in the series when it comes out and I know Molly and her story are going to stick with me for a very long time to come.
Did I mention that I love this story??
Rating: 4.5 STARS
Genre: Romantic Comedy
Standalone/Series: The Naughty Princess Club #1 - (can be read as a standalone)
How I got this book: ARC from St. Martin's Press
Meet the Naughty Princess Club: a brand new series from USA Today bestselling author Tara Sivec that introduces readers to Fairytale Lane and the hilarity—and romance—that ensue when three women start a new business to make it rain.
Once upon a time Cynthia was the perfect housewife. Between being the President of the PTA and keeping her home spotless without a hair (or her pearls) out of place, her life was a dream come true. Her husband was once her knight in shining armor, but now he’s run off with all their money…and the babysitter.
Dressed as a princess at the annual Halloween block party on Fairytale Lane, she meets two other “princesses” also facing money troubles: antique store owner Ariel and librarian Isabelle. When the women are invited to wear their costumes to a party where they’re mistaken for strippers, Cindy, Ariel, and Belle realize that a career change could be the best way to make their money problems go bippity-boppity-boo.
But can structured Cindy approach a stripper pole without sanitizing wipes? And could the blue-eyed anti-prince that has been crossing her path become Cindy’s happily ever after? At the Stroke of Midnight is a hilarious, empowering story where princesses can save themselves while slaying in stilettos.
Tara Sivec is the queen of adult comedy!
I've said it before and I'll say it again, nothing makes me laugh like Tara's romantic comedies.
"Okay, I get it now. If he had said it makes his frickle hard, that wouldn't have been as hot."
The characters are fun, real and crazy (in the best possible way)! The one-liners in this book had me laughing so hard I snorted. I love the ladies in this book. Cindy is strong-willed, ballsey and sexy but years of oppression force her into the mould of a prude. It takes a crappy wake up call, new friends and a man who lights everything on fire with his smoulder to give Cindy the push she needs to take back control of her life. And she does it in style!
"You will tell me everything about why you walked over here an hour ago just to talk business and suddenly I find you riding him like Seabiscuit."
Fans of Tara's Holiday's series will also be happy to spot the little Easter Egg from two of our favourite Holiday's characters in this book.
This book is perfect for anyone who needs a side-splitting laugh with a heavy dose of grin-inducing romance, a hero to swoon for and three badass leading ladies (plus the other awesome ladies in this book) who pack punches, kicks and more dirty talk than a ship full of sailors. Fans of Tara's Chocolate Lovers/Chocoholics Series and Jed Had to Die will devour this book!
"My God, you have eye chlamydia! See, I told you it wasn't an urban legend!"
If you love princesses, but wish they were a little more 'real' you need to read At the Stroke of Midnight! I can't wait for Belle to tackle the Beast in book number two!! I'll be over here still laughing at this book while I wait, and ordering myself a few tequila t-shirts ;)
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Book addict, film mad, music lover, business owner, aspiring writer and mum (not necessarily in that order), living in the UK.
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