The Last Namsara (Iskari #1) by Kristen Ciccarelli

Synopsis

Asha is a dragon-slayer. Reviled by the very people she’s sworn to protect, she kills to atone for the terrible deed she committed as a child. 
  
One that almost destroyed her city, and left her with a terrible scar. 
  
She wears her scar with pride, but to others, her skin tells a story of devastation, of fiery deaths, of Asha’s irredeemable wickedness.

Only the death of Kozu, the First Dragon, will bring Asha true redemption and unite her father’s fractured kingdom. But no one battles Kozu and lives, so to defeat him she will have to do some very wicked things…
From: Gollancz
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‘The Last Namsara’ published by Gollancz (October 12, 2017)
I fought for this book. Literally. I had to dive my hand into a box full of shredded paper at the same time as four other people and try to find a golden egg in order to win this book. The result: a worsen eczema and a beautiful arc of The Last Namsara. Such is the beauty of book conventions.

Sometimes I get feelings about books; sometimes I’m wrong about them, sometimes I’m right. The first time I saw this book was on the same day I won it and I instantly knew I wanted it. I knew I needed to read it because there was something irradiating from it, like a kind of invisible light that only I could see. When I got it in my hands, I was even surer than before: I knew this book was special and I couldn’t wait to read it.

I finished it a couple of minutes ago. There is a familiar emptiness in my chest that always comes after the end of something I didn’t want to end. But there is also something else: a strange feeling that I would’ve come across this book no matter how or where because it was my destiny to read it.

The Last Namsara is a reminder of the importance of stories. It is a testament to their mighty power which cannot be silenced by anything or anyone. It is a story about stories, a tapestry of intertwined tales that isn’t yet finished. Most of all, it is the story of a girl who made the grave mistake of believing in what other people thought she was, instead of finding out for herself.

Don’t expect this book to be a straightforward tale of dragons and ruthless hunters: that is just the surface. This is a tale about identity and injustice, disillusion and violence. It is a story about a girl – Asha – who is forced to take hard decisions and to understand who she is after her choices become consequences. Asha is a heroine every girl should read about because she evolves into the person she always wanted to be without even realising it. She reminds us that we can become who we have always wanted to be, but were too scared to; most importantly, she makes us understand that regardless of whatever other people have to say about us, we can be the exact opposite.

The Last Namsara is a portal into a different world where dragons exist and stories can kill. It is one big lie and a series of unwavering truths. It will burn you from the inside out and you will be surprised to look the same after you read it. But are you the same?

After all, the best books are able to change you, even if no one else can see it.

When you read this one, try to keep its message in mind: only you can have a say in who you really are.

 

Fae
PS: I would like to thank Gollancz for this arc. I think you’re all set to launch a bestseller.
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The Ocean at the End of the Lane by Neil Gaiman

Synopsis

It began for our narrator forty years ago when the family lodger stole their car and committed suicide in it, stirring up ancient powers best left undisturbed. Dark creatures from beyond the world are on the loose, and it will take everything our narrator has just to stay alive. There is primal horror here, and menace unleashed – within his family and from the forces that have gathered to destroy it.

His only defense is three women, on a farm at the end of the lane. The youngest of them claims that her duckpond is an ocean. The oldest can remember the Big Bang.

The Ocean at the End of the Lane is a fable that reshapes modern fantasy: moving, terrifying and elegiac – as pure as a dream, as delicate as a butterfly’s wing, as dangerous as a knife in the dark.

From Goodreads

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The Ocean at the End of the Lane published by Headline Publishing Group (2015)

This is the kind of book anyone who was deeply affected by their childhood’s memories will understand. I don’t believe it’s easy or straightforward. It is a fantasy book, yes, but also a strange sort of memoir. The main character is trying to remember his childhood and some of the most important moments of his life. What we are left with is his perspective of what happened in those moments. I said ‘his perspective’ because, after all, “Different people remember things differently, and you’ll not get any two people to remember anything the same, whether they were there or not.”

Continue reading “The Ocean at the End of the Lane by Neil Gaiman”

Clockwork Princess (The Infernal Devices #3) by Cassandra Clare

I’ve finished this book months ago but it’s like I haven’t. Not really and not permanently. In fact, I feel like I will be forever reading it. The words seem too reluctant to leave my mind and the characters… those will always stay.

Synopsis

THE INFERNAL DEVICES WILL NEVER STOP COMING.

A net of shadows begins to tighten around the Shadowhunters of the London Institute. Mortmain plans to use his Infernal Devices, an army of pitiless automatons, to destroy the Shadowhunters. He needs only one last item to complete his plan: he needs Tessa Gray.

Danger and betrayal, secrets and enchantment, and the tangled threads of love and loss intertwine as the Shadowhunters are pushed to the very brink of destruction in the breathtaking conclusion to the Infernal Devices trilogy.

From Goodreads

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Clockwork Princess published by Simon & Schuster (2013)

I don’t really know what I was expecting from The Infernal Devices ending. The only thing I know is that I wasn’t expecting to finish it sobbing my lungs out for an hour or two.

Continue reading “Clockwork Princess (The Infernal Devices #3) by Cassandra Clare”

City of Lost Souls (The Mortal Instruments #5) by Cassandra Clare

Synopsis

What price is too high to pay, even for love? When Jace and Clary meet again, Clary is horrified to discover that the Lilith’s magic has bound Jace together with her evil brother Sebastian, and that Jace has become a servant of evil. The Clave is out to destroy Sebastian, but there is no way to harm one boy without destroying the other. As Alec, Magnus, Simon, and Isabelle wheedle and bargain with Seelies, demons, and the merciless Iron Sisters to try to save Jace, Clary plays a dangerous game of her own. The price of losing is not just her own life, but Jace’s soul. She’s willing to do anything for Jace, but can she still trust him? Or is he truly lost?

From Goodreads

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City of Lost Souls published by Walker Books 2012

Loving a book is not hard. If you read books regularly, the probabilities of finding a book that you love are very high. You’ll probably find a book that will make you think of it when you’re waiting for the money to come out of the ATM for no apparent reason. You’ll find a book that will force you to stay up late when you have to be up and ready by 7a.m. the next morning. You’ll find that book and you know you really love it when you reach the last page and you think “Goddammit, why does this book have two blank pages after it ends when they could have more of the story for me?”

City of Lost Souls by Cassandra Clara had that effect on me, as every single one of the previous books of the series did. It made me feel guilty when I was too tired to keep my eyes open to continue reading. It made me want to cry, it made me laugh, it made me feel sick, upset, happy and broken. It made me feel everything a great book should make you feel.

Continue reading “City of Lost Souls (The Mortal Instruments #5) by Cassandra Clare”

A Court of Thorns and Roses (A Court of Thorns and Roses #1) by Sarah J. Maas

Warning: this review contains (unnecessary) sexual content; just like the book does.

Synopsis

When nineteen-year-old huntress Feyre kills a wolf, a beast-like creature arrives at her home to avenge it. Forced to go to a dangerous magical land she only knows about from legends, Feyre discovers that her captor is not an animal: he is Tamlin—one of the lethal, immortal faeries who once ruled their world.

As she dwells on his estate, Feyre’s feelings for Tamlin change. But an ancient, wicked shadow grows over the faerie lands, and Feyre must find a way to stop it… or doom Tamlin—and his world—forever.

From Goodreads

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A Court of Thorns and Roses published by Bloomsbury 2015

A Court of Thorns and Roses (or, like Chaos always said when asking me if I was done with it already, A Thorn of Court) turned out to be a surprise. I was very curious about it and my curiosity grew every time I saw a beautiful drawing of the characters, or people talking about it on Instagram. I thought I was on my way to discover another book series that would make me fall in love. I was wrong.

Continue reading “A Court of Thorns and Roses (A Court of Thorns and Roses #1) by Sarah J. Maas”

Throne of Glass (Throne of Glass #1) by Sarah J. Maas

Let’s talk about what’s in now: courts and thrones and badass girls.

Synopsis

After serving out a year of hard labour in the salt mines of Endovier for her crimes, 18-year-old assassin Celaena Sardothien is dragged before the Crown Prince. Prince Dorian offers her freedom on one condition: she must act as his champion in a competition to find a new royal assassin.

Her opponents are men-thieves, assassins, and warriors from across the empire, each sponsored by a member of the king’s council. If she beats her opponents in a series of eliminations, she’ll serve the kingdom for four years and then be granted her freedom.

Then one of the other contestants turns up dead… quickly followed by another. Can Celaena figure out who the killer is before she becomes a victim? As the young assassin investigates, her search leads her to discover a greater destiny than she could possibly have imagined.

From Goodreads

 

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Throne of Glass published by Bloomsbury

Celaena Sardothien is an unexpected heroine. She is not a villain but that doesn’t stop her from being wicked. Her heart is good, her essence fierce. She is brave and smart and strong. But in her complexity, there is also arrogance and faithlessness. Not as much as a true heroine but more as an ordinary girl, sometimes she doesn’t know what she wants. And that, somehow, made me love her even more.

Continue reading “Throne of Glass (Throne of Glass #1) by Sarah J. Maas”

Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children (Miss Peregrine’s Peculiar Children #1) by Ransom Riggs

This book has grown in popularity ever since the screen adaptation by Tim Burton was announced. It has a huge fanbase and I’m sure that when the movie comes out, everyone will rush to the bookstores to get it. So it’s time to review it.

Synopsis

After his grandfather’s mysterious death, sixteen-year-old Jacob travels to a remote island off the coast of Wales, where he discovers the crumbling ruins of Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children. As Jacob explores its abandoned bedrooms and hallways, it becomes clear that the children were more than just peculiar. They may have been dangerous. They may have been quarantined on a deserted island for a good reason. And somehow—impossible though it seems—they may still be alive.

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Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children published by Quirk Books (2013)

It hooked me from the very first sentence:

“I had just come to accept that my life would be ordinary when extraordinary things began to happen.”

I’m lucky to have thought “oh, I know that feeling” when I first read it. It is precisely because of this that I defend the idea that a book must have, mandatorily, a good opening line. But this book has way more than one great line. And that’s mainly the reason why I didn’t stop reading it when I got slightly bored with it after the leading mystery was solved.

Ransom Riggs has the kind of writing that makes you feel guilty of putting the book down before you’re officially finished with it. That’s why I don’t regret having stuck with his peculiar story until the very end. Even though it gets too weird at some point, his writing makes everything seem better, sound better, work better.

I won’t spoil anything. Instead, I will leave here one of my favourite passages from the book in an attempt to seduce you into his strange world:

“Stars, too, are time travelers. How many of those ancient points of light were the last echoes of suns now dead? How many had been born but their light not yet come this far? If all the suns but ours had collapsed tonight, how many lifetimes would it take us to realize that we are not alone? I had always known the sky was full of mysteries – but not until now had I realized how full of them the earth was.”

Fae

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