Bookish Features

First Lines Friday – July 19, 2019

First Lines Fridays is a weekly feature hosted by Wandering Words. The meme is based on the idea that instead of judging a book by its cover, author, prestige, we judge it instead by its opening line(s). The book I picked today is one that contains a highly  important message, especially with everything we see in YA books these days being. You can check out my review of the book here!

Love is for children, said the girl.
Death is for fools, said the shadow.

Darkness is my destiny, said the boy.
Allegiance is my undoing, said the eagle.
Suffering is our fate, said the beauty.
And they were all horribly wrong.

 


ABOUT THE BOOK

we hunt the flame

Title: We Hunt the Flame (Sands of Arawiya, #1)
Author: Hafsah Faizal
Rating: ★★★

People lived because she killed.
People died because he lived.

Zafira is the Hunter, disguising herself as a man when she braves the cursed forest of the Arz to feed her people. Nasir is the Prince of Death, assassinating those foolish enough to defy his autocratic father, the king. If Zafira was exposed as a girl, all of her achievements would be rejected; if Nasir displayed his compassion, his father would punish him in the most brutal of ways.

Both are legends in the kingdom of Arawiya—but neither wants to be.

War is brewing, and the Arz sweeps closer with each passing day, engulfing the land in shadow. When Zafira embarks on a quest to uncover a lost artifact that can restore magic to her suffering world and stop the Arz, Nasir is sent by the king on a similar mission: retrieve the artifact and kill the Hunter. But an ancient evil stirs as their journey unfolds—and the prize they seek may pose a threat greater than either can imagine.

Bookish Features

Waiting on Wednesday – July 17, 2019

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by Breaking the Spine in which we share a book that we are eagerly anticipating!

Steel Tide by Natalie C. Parker

Steel TideFrom Goodreads:

The second book in a heart-stopping trilogy that follows the captain of an all-female ship intent on taking down a vicious warlord’s powerful fleet.

Caledonia may have lost her crew, but she’s not done fighting yet. After nearly dying at the hand of a powerful foe, Caledonia is pulled from the sea and nursed back to health by a crew of former Bullets that call themselves Blades. The Blades escaped Aric Athair’s clutches and now live a nomadic existence, ready to disappear at a moment’s notice should trouble come their way.

But Caledonia wants to do more than just hide. She wants to find the Mors Navis and her beloved sisters. She wants to continue fighting Aric’s fleet and to take back the Bullet seas. She’ll need to do everything in her power to convince the Blades that fighting is their only option, that there has to be a life better than the one under Aric Athair’s reign, and that finding the women of the Mors Navis is the first step to revolution.

See my review for Seafire.

Bookish Features

Top 5 Tuesday: K, L, M, N, O

Top 5 Tuesday is weekly meme created by the Shanah @ Bionic Book Worm.

1. An Anonymous Girl, Greer Hendricks & Sarah Pekannen

2. The Broken Girls, Simone St. James

3. Caraval, Stephanie Garber

4. Delilah: Treacherous Beauty, Angela Hunt

5.  The English Wife, Lauren Willig

6. Finale, Stephanie Garber

7. Grace and Fury, Tracy Banghart

8. House of Salt and Sorrows, Erin A. Craig

9. It’s Not Lose Weight to Get Healthy, It’s Get Healthy to Lose WeightEric Berg

10. Jane Eyre, Charlotte Bronte

11. Kingdom of Happiness: Living the Beatitudes in Everyday Life, Jeffrey Kirby

12. Legendary, Stephanie Garber

13. The Murder of Roger Ackroyd, Agatha Christie

14. Not That I Could Tell, Jessica Strawser

15. Onyx and Ivory, Mindee Arnett

Book Reviews

Seafire (Seafire, #1) by Natalie C. Parker

SeafireTitle: Seafire (Seafire, #1)
Author: Natalie C. Parker
Rating: ★★★

After her family is killed by corrupt warlord Aric Athair and his bloodthirsty army of Bullets, Caledonia Styx is left to chart her own course on the dangerous and deadly seas. She captains her ship, the Mors Navis, with a crew of girls and women just like her, who have lost their families and homes because of Aric and his men. The crew has one mission: stay alive, and take down Aric’s armed and armored fleet.

But when Caledonia’s best friend and second-in-command barely survives an attack thanks to help from a Bullet looking to defect, Caledonia finds herself questioning whether to let him join their crew. Is this boy the key to taking down Aric Athair once and for all . . . or will he threaten everything the women of the Mors Navis have worked for?

Seafire: ★★★

Caledonia Styx is the captain of the infamous Mors Navis. After her family and many other families are destroyed by Aric Athair, Caledonia and her crew of mismatched women do everything in their power to stop Athair and try to restore the families lost as much as they can. But when one of the enemy boards the ship, will he only make matters worse or aid in the destruction of Athair?

pirate

When this novel came out, there were many other novels with nautical themes coming out at the same time. Having just read one, this one left me a little flat. There were many parts that I enjoyed, but many others that just had me feeling, “meh”. I wanted to love it. The premise was intriguing: an all-female crew of a ship!

I cannot promise you safety. I thought I could, but we don’t live in a safe world. We live in a world with no good options, but it’s because of you that we can make the best of them.

Probably my favorite theme of the entire novel was unity. Not only do we see it from the crew, but every other group we come across of the journey that the girls take. “Family” not necessarily in the form of blood is a big bonding theme shown throughout the novel. The selflessness for the greater good of humanity is a constant subject.

“The thing about family is sometimes you don’t have to ask us to do stupid things, and sometimes you don’t get to tell us we can’t.

arya

Girl power is probably the strongest theme throughout the novel. Women are more powerful than they appear. In most instances, women have just as much power, if not more, than the men. We see many of the leaders (besides Athair) who are women.

There are no children anymore. Just babes and the rest of us. Remember, when they call you girl, they’re trying to tell you something. They’re trying to tell you that they’re more than you, that the body you’re in makes you less. But you know, and I know, that you’re exactly what you need to be.

Parker does a great job emulating the strength and power women can also have. The sense of strength and capability established by this all-women crew instills pride and gratitude to always try your best, even when others doubt you. The unity and sense of family presence throughout the novel is heart-warming. I’m excited for what the next installment has in store!

Bookish Features

First Lines Friday – July 12, 2019

First Lines Fridays is a weekly feature hosted by Wandering Words. The meme is based on the idea that instead of judging a book by its cover, author, prestige, we judge it instead by its opening line(s). The book I picked today is one that contains a highly  important message, especially with everything we see in YA books these days being. You can check out my review of the book here!

Benat Gallego was thirteen when he watched uncle and cousin burn to death.

 

ABOUT THE BOOK

These Rebel Waves

Title: These Rebel Waves (These Rebel Waves, #!)
Author: Sarah Raasch
Rating: ★★★★

Adeluna is a soldier. Five years ago, she helped the magic-rich island of Grace Loray overthrow its oppressor, Argrid, a country ruled by religion. But adjusting to postwar life has not been easy. When an Argridian delegate vanishes during peace talks with Grace Loray’s new Council, Argrid demands brutal justice—but Lu suspects something more dangerous is at work.

Devereux is a pirate. As one of the outlaws called stream raiders who run rampant on Grace Loray, he pirates the island’s magic plants and sells them on the black market. But after Argrid accuses raiders of the diplomat’s abduction, Vex becomes a target. An expert navigator, he agrees to help Lu find the Argridian—but the truth they uncover could be deadlier than any war.

Benat is a heretic. The crown prince of Argrid, he harbors a secret obsession with Grace Loray’s forbidden magic. When Ben’s father, the king, gives him the shocking task of reversing Argrid’s fear of magic, Ben has to decide if one prince can change a devout country—or if he’s building his own pyre.

As conspiracies arise, Lu, Vex, and Ben will have to decide who they really are . . . and what they are willing to become for peace.

Bookish Features

Waiting on Wednesday – July 10, 2019

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by Breaking the Spine in which we share a book that we are eagerly anticipating!

These Divided Shores by Sara Raasch

These Divided ShoresFrom Goodreads:

The thrilling sequel to These Rebel Waves—full of deadly magic, double crosses, and a revolution—from Sara Raasch, the bestselling author of the Snow Like Ashes series.

As a child, she committed unforgivable acts to free Grace Loray from King Elazar of Argrid. Now Elazar’s plan to retake the island has surpassed Lu’s darkest fears: he’s holding her and his son, Ben, captive in an endlessly shifting prison, forcing them to make a weapon that will guarantee Elazar’s success. Escape is impossible—unless Lu becomes the ruthless soldier she hoped never to be again.

Vex failed to save Lu and Ben—and that torments him as much as his Shaking Sickness. With the disease worsening, Vex throws himself into the rebellion against Argrid. The remaining free armies are allied with the stream raider syndicates—and getting them to cooperate will take a strength Vex thought burned on a pyre six years ago.

Imprisoned, betrayed, and heartbroken, Ben is determined to end his father’s rampage. Watching Elazar sway the minds of Grace Loray as he did those of Argrid, Ben knows he has to play his father’s game of devotion to win this war. But how can a heretic prince defeat the Pious God?

As armies clash and magic rises, Lu, Vex, and Ben will confront their pasts . . . or lose their futures forever.

See my review for These Rebel Waves.