Book Reviews

Heart of Thorns (Heart of Thorns, #1) by Bree Barton

Heart of ThornsTitle: Heart of Thorns (Heart of Thorns, #1)
Author: Bree Barton
Rating: ★★★

Fidacteu zeu bighotz limarya eu naj.

Trust your heart, even if it kills you.

I received this in the July 2018 FairyLoot box.

Once upon a time, an arranged marriage existed between Mia Rose and Prince Quin. But unlike her sister, Mia could care less about the fame and fortune. All she cares about is seeking revenge against the Gwyrach (pretty much a witch) who killed her mother. Following the below Hunters’ Creed as a lifestyle:

Heart for a heart, life for a life.

Trying to avoid the consummation of her marriage, Mia plans to escape with her sister. However, her plan backfires and she is stuck seeking revenge with none other than her beloved betrothed. Maybe not everything is how it appeared to be?

The First Law of the Dujia
The practice of magic shall never be used by Dujia to consciously inflict pain, suffering, or death on her fellow sister, unless the Dujia’s own life is in danger.

The Second Law of the Dujia
The practice of magic shall never be used by Dujia to consciously inflict pain, suffering, or death on herself.

The Third Law of Dujia
In situations wherein the practice of magic is necessary, it is at the direction of the Dujia to determine the most equitable balance of power and act accordingly.

Along their journey, Mia starts to uncover secrets, not only pertaining to her mother’s death, but about herself. 

The people you love are the ones who hurt you the most.

Speaking of love, Quin seemed, to me, to have some romance connections with three other people, so I totally get how Mia would be confused. At one point, I definitely thought things were going in a different direction. Quin is one confusing guy and everyone seems to want him.

What

So, I kind of saw the ending coming, but kind of not. I’m not sure why everyone kept blaming Mia for both deaths? Obviously, she didn’t do it and how do people make out that she did? Like, what?!

But, with that said, I did like it this novel! Unfortunately, things only start to get interesting about 75% of the way through the story. After that, I was entrapped in the plot. Two of the deaths I did not see coming whatsoever! I’m curious to see how everything will turn out in the next book as we now have a lot of loose ends to tie up. 

JULY 2018 FAIRYLOOT

Book Reviews, Bookish Features

[BLOG TOUR + GIVEAWAY] Grace and Fury by Tracy Banghart

thumbnail_GRACE AND FURY

Welcome to my stop on the Grace and Fury book tour! Thank you to Rockstar Book Tours for organizing the tour and allowing me to participate as a tour stop!  I was really happy that there was going to be a blog tour on this novel because I received it in my June 2018 FairyLoot Box!


ABOUT THE BOOK

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Title: GRACE AND FURY
Author: Tracy Banghart
Pub. Date: July 31, 2018
Publisher: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers
Formats: Hardcover, eBook
Pages: 320
Find it: GoodreadsAmazonB&NiBooksTBD

In a world where women have no rights, sisters Serina and Nomi Tessaro face two very different fates: one in the palace, the other in prison.

Serina has been groomed her whole life to become a Grace–someone to stand by the heir to the throne as a shining, subjugated example of the perfect woman. But when her headstrong and rebellious younger sister, Nomi, catches the heir’s eye, it’s Serina who takes the fall for the dangerous secret that Nomi has been hiding.

Now trapped in a life she never wanted, Nomi has only one way to save Serina: surrender to her role as a Grace until she can use her position to release her sister. This is easier said than done. A traitor walks the halls of the palace, and deception lurks in every corner. But Serina is running out of time, imprisoned on an island where she must fight to the death to survive and one wrong move could cost her everything.


REVIEW

Serina and Nomi Tessaro are sisters living in a world where men rule. Not many desirable options are available to women. And even those that are, are not entirely fulfilling. Ever since a young age, Serina was molded to become a Grace – the “perfect” companion to the Heir. However, younger sister Nomi is always up to no good. Serina is destined to pay the price for Nomi’s ignorance.

In a way, it is kind of funny that the roles are reversed, just in a more unpleasant way. The wrong move and either could die at any moment. The right moves could break them out of their prisons and save both their lives. Who can be trusted when deceit paints the walls all around them?

Listen, learn, and remember this one thing: Every rule you were ever taught in Viridia – about being quiest, modest, humble, weak – won’t help you here. Here, strength is the only currency.

The reason I preferred Nomi over Serina is because she spoke her mind. As Serina grows throughout the book, she starts to stand up for herself…kinda. She is just so passive and I find it annoying, even when she does try to stand up for herself. It’s just half-butted (sorry, not swearing…you get the point). On the otherhand, Nomi is quite annoying, as well. She has gotten so many people into trouble! Come on girl, I could tell who was going to betray you since the beginning!

Your ability to mask your true feelings, your true self, will be your greatest weapon.

For someone who has a hard time paying attention, I loved that the chapters were shorter and it alternating perspectives between Nomi and Serina every chapter. Also, it is nice to see a sibling connection of our protagonists. Generally, the protagonists don’t initially know each other and somehow end up banding together. We start with them intertwined in the story and the reader gets to understand the characters not only from their own perspectives, but with the knowledge they each know of each other.

We obviously knows there will be at least a second book in the series and I’m excited to see how things pan out. Also, I just really want to know what happens with Renzo. Poor guy. Haha!

In the back of my mind, it had a lot of similarities to The Selection. So, for those of you who liked the series, I think you would enjoy this. However, there is the added benefit of The Hunger Games-like fighting for your lives in a ring feel.

★★★★


ABOUT THE AUTHOR

TracyTracy Banghart grew up in rural Maryland and spent her summers on a remote island in northern Ontario. All of that isolation and lovely scenery gave her the time to read voraciously and the inspiration to write her own stories. Always a bit of a nomad, Tracy now travels the world Army-wife style with her husband, son, cat, and sweet pupper Scrabble. She wrote Grace and Fury while living in Hawaii.

Follow Scott:
Website | Twitter | Facebook | Instagram | Goodreads


GIVEAWAY DETAILS

3 winners will receive a finished copy of GRACE AND FURY, US Only.

ENTER GIVEAWAY HERE


FOLLOW THE TOUR

Week One:
7/23/2018 |Tea Party Princess
7/24/2018 |Paperback Princess
7/25/2018 |Confessions of a YA Reader
7/26/2018 |Book Dragon Lair
7/27/2018 |laura’s bookish corner

Week Two:
7/30/2018 |The Desert Bibliophile
7/31/2018 |Do You Dog-ear?
8/1/2018 |Synopses By Sarge
8/2/2018 |CoffeeCocktailsandBooks Blog
8/3/2018 |Kat’s Books

Week Three:
8/6/2018 |Feed Your Fiction Addiction
8/7/2018 |Portrait of a Book
8/8/2018 |To Be Read
8/9/2018 |Brooke- Reports
8/10/2018 |Cindy’s Love of Books

Week Four:
8/13/2018 |A Court of Coffee and Books
8/14/2018 |Smada’s Book Smack
8/15/2018 |The Young Folks 
8/16/2018 |Book-Keeping
8/17/2018 |A Gingerly Review

Book Reviews

Onyx & Ivory (Rime Chronicles #1) by Mindee Arnett

Onyx and IvoryTitle: Onyx & Ivory (Rime Chronicles #1)
Author: Mindee Arnett
Rating: ★★★★

I received this in the May 2018 FairyLoot box.

Traitor Kate

Kate Brighton, member of the Relay (aka Rime Postal Service), inherited her new name after her father took a go at assassinating the high king. Every day poses some troubles with nightdrakes on the prowl to devour any Relay members and their horses if they don’t make it behind castle walls on time. But Kate has a secret…she is a wilder: she can use magic to influence the minds of animals. However, if she is caught, the same beautiful magic could quickly lead to her death.

In moments like these, atop a horse and flying over the ground, she glimpsed her old life. She became Kate Brighton again. Daughter of Hale Brighton, master of horse to the high king. She was free. A girl with a future. Someone who mattered.

Things take a turn when Kate saves the life of Corwin Tormane (with the help of magic), the high king’s son and her former lover. Unbeknownst to the lie behind the secret weapon, Corwin invites Kate and her two closest friends to accompany him to Norgard in hopes that with their help (and the manufacturing of this new secret weapon), the people won’t have to live in fear of the drakes any longer.

The uror sign was a horse. One half of his body was inky black, the other white as ivory.

The sign of the uror was always equally half black and half white, and always would appear when it was time for an heir to be named king. Edwin and Corwin were tested for their “worthiness as heir”, bringing them to multiple decisions and tasks, many times making them re-hash not-so-pleasant moments of their lives.

What is Kate’s father’s secret? What led her father on his attempt to assassinate the king?What will Kate do with her secret power? Will she ever tell Corwin, and if she does, what will happen? Who will become the heir?

Was anyone else’s favorite Dal? He was funny, serious when needed, and always trying to brighten the mood. Then again, I tend to always like the supporting characters more than the protagonists.

The world is black and white and all the shades of gray in between

A war storm is brewing. Who will win? What devastation will come from this brawl? 

Besides for the opening scene (ugh! it almost made me cry…I used to ride horses) and infidelity (oh, how I hate thee), I really enjoyed this novel. Also, the cover is absolutely astonishing. 

MAY 2018 FAIRYLOOT