Tag Archive | Series

Review: The End of Oz

Title: The End of Oz

Author: Danielle Paige

Date of Publication: March 14th, 2017

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Goodreads Summary:

Ding dong—Dorothy is dead.

I watched as the Emerald Palace crumbled to the ground, burying Dorothy, the Girl Who Rode the Cyclone, under the rubble. And now that the rightful ruler, Ozma, has been restored to the throne…

Oz is finally free.

My name is Amy Gumm. You might remember me as the othergirl from Kansas. When a tornado whisked me away to the magical land of Oz, I was given a mission: Dorothy must die.

But it turns out girls from Kansas are harder to kill than we look.

Now the Road of Yellow Brick is leading me away from Oz to the dark world of Ev, where I have a new, powerful enemy to deal with: the Nome King. And—surprise—he has a gingham-clad bride.

With my magical shoes and a shrinking group of allies, I have one final chance to fulfill my mission, and save not only what’s left of Oz, but Kansas, too. As the line between Good and Wicked blurs even further, I have to find a way to get rid of Dorothy once and for all—without turning into a monster myself.

Dorothy once said there’s no place like home. Can I stop her from destroying mine?

My Review:

This was an excellent ending to this fun series! All the books including this one has had the perfect blend of light and dark. One of my favorite aspects here were the Wheelers!!!! I loved them in Return to Oz, and the author made them seem so much creepier and awesome in this one!

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I have always loved the bond between Knox and Amy, but I felt it was really good here, and there were some super cute moments! The author has extraordinary world building skills, I could visualize all the details throughout this series, but even a lot more in this one. There were some pretty creepy stuff in EV, and the descriptions were on point.

“We all have a witch somewhere inside us.”

This one is also told in dual POV between Dorothy and Amy, and Dorothy’s chapters were all kind of crazy because she IS crazy! And the Gnome King was a freak as usual. I’m seriously going to miss this series and all it’s quirks!

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Review: Anything But Extraordinary

Title: Anything But Extraordinary

Author: Mary Frame

Date of Publication: November 9th, 2017

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Goodreads Summary:

When the local authorities ask Ruby Simpson to help them find a thief in the small town of Castle Cove, she doesn’t have much of a choice. She predicted the most recent theft, and the cops have no other leads.

There are just two small problems.
One, she’s not psychic.
Two, she’s not Ruby Simpson.

Okay, maybe they’re not small problems. But Charlotte needs a place to lay low with her younger sister, somewhere her parents won’t find her and the locals won’t ask too many questions. Getting involved with the cops, especially Deputy “Cute Butt” Jared, isn’t a smart thing for a reformed con artist to do. But Charlotte has to make a choice: raise her little sister on the right side of the law or put food on the table. What the real Ruby doesn’t see in her crystal ball won’t hurt her, right?

My Review:

I absolutely love Mary Frame’s Imperfect series, so when I had a chance to read an ARC of this, I was pretty excited. And I did not get let down!

This book was a hilarious ride, and I loved the characters! Especially Charlotte’s little sister Paige. Charlotte pretends to be this psychic named Ruby in order to make a quick buck from a persistent customer. When something happens and it leads back to Ruby, she ends up being hired by the police to help try to solve a crime.

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The Romance starts in this book, and I love it! This is the first of a trilogy. I read an ARC of A Life Less Extraordinary as well, and it’s excellent!

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Pre-order ebook on Amazon * Paperback already available

 

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Review: Tower of Dawn

Title: Tower of Dawn

Author: Sarah J. Maas

Date of Publication: September 5th, 2017

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Goodreads Summary:

Chaol Westfall has always defined himself by his unwavering loyalty, his strength, and his position as the Captain of the Guard. But all of that has changed since the glass castle shattered, since his men were slaughtered, since the King of Adarlan spared him from a killing blow, but left his body broken.

His only shot at recovery lies with the legendary healers of the Torre Cesme in Antica—the stronghold of the southern continent’s mighty empire. And with war looming over Dorian and Aelin back home, their survival might lie with Chaol and Nesryn convincing its rulers to ally with them.

But what they discover in Antica will change them both—and be more vital to saving Erilea than they could have imagined.

My Review:

I have never been a fan of Chaol since day one. However, I did love the friendship bond between him and Celaena in the first book. But, I already knew up front I would love Sarah’s writing because I always do—I just wasn’t sure if I would be able to fall in love with this character since I hadn’t yet. But… I did!

Chaol’s journey had ups and downs, and there were dark reminders of his past that still tortured him. But that’s the thing… we sometimes make mistakes or make choices that you don’t know how it’s going to affect the people around you, even if you thought the choice was right to begin with.

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The struggle with Chaol after his accident and trying to walk again was haunting to read, because it felt real. Maas did an excellent job of depicting disability in this book, of a person’s struggle inside there own head trying to walk again or with the idea of it may not happening.

I fell in love with the other characters, Yrene, Nezryn, and Sartaq, as well as some of the other side characters. There were some parts in this book where some serious stuff went down, and I actually got pretty worried during some of the action scenes. A lot of this book didn’t go the way I assumed it would, and in fact it went in an even better direction. I can’t believe I have to wait a whole year for the next book!

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Review: The Girl in the Tower

Title: The Girl in the Tower

Author: Katherine Arden

Date of Publication: December 5th, 2017

Goodreads Summary:

The magical adventure begun in The Bear and the Nightingalecontinues as brave Vasya, now a young woman, is forced to choose between marriage or life in a convent and instead flees her home—but soon finds herself called upon to help defend the city of Moscow when it comes under siege.

Orphaned and cast out as a witch by her village, Vasya’s options are few: resign herself to life in a convent, or allow her older sister to make her a match with a Moscovite prince. Both doom her to life in a tower, cut off from the vast world she longs to explore. So instead she chooses adventure, disguising herself as a boy and riding her horse into the woods. When a battle with some bandits who have been terrorizing the countryside earns her the admiration of the Grand Prince of Moscow, she must carefully guard the secret of her gender to remain in his good graces—even as she realizes his kingdom is under threat from mysterious forces only she will be able to stop.

My Review:

I’m not sure if I liked this one more or the same as the first book. The first one was really good, and this was just as good, if not better!

I was very excited to get more of Vasya, she is a character where nothing can hold her back. That mean’s she is awesome in my book, even though sometimes her actions lead to consequences. I loved the bond between Vasya and her siblings, Sasha and Olga. Their family relationship felt real, and never forced.

Now, lets get to the Frost Demon. Morozko! This is where my problem lies. Just like it did with the first book. I needed him to appear more often!!! There was more of him than there was in the first book, but there still needed to be more of this awesome Winter King! Hopefully in the next book!

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The writing was excellent, Russian setting is perfection, and the action was awesome. There’s so much more I want to learn about this awesome world, and I hope I get more answers in the next book!! But overall, this was an excellent second book.

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Have you read The Bear and the Nightingale?

Review: Dorothy Must Die: Short Stories

I’m starting Dorothy Must Die as a group read for September, so I thought I should read these prequel novellas since they were on Overdrive!

Title: No Place Like Oz

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Mini Review: Dorothy is on her second trip back to Oz, and she does not want to return to Kansas ever again. Her aunt and uncle journey with her, and the demise of Dorothy was excellent! 5 stars!

Title: The Witch Must Burn

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Mini Review: Loved, loved, loved this one! I really like Jellia and Knox. I want to read more about Knox! Glinda is also a real piece of work. 5 stars!

Title: The Wizard Returns

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Mini Review: I normally hate the Wizard. I just have never liked his character, and James Franco made it worse in his adaptation and douche bag of a character. After reading this, my opinion has not changed of the Wizard, only intensified. He’s an idiot! However, the story was excellent. He never went away in his balloon. Instead, he lost his memory, and we learn more about him along the way. Very interesting! 5 stars!

Title: Heart of Tin

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Mini Review: I actually started with this one since the Tin Man is my favorite. Well, he was an odd one here. He lets his actions be overpowered by his obsession with Dorothy. It was dark and showed just what obsession can do to a person. 5 stars!

Title: The Straw King

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Mini Review: I was hoping that this one was going to be dark like Heart of Tin, but it was actually more about some history of OZ. It was still great, but I really wanted to see the demise of the Scarecrow! I definitely do not like Glinda! 4 stars!

Title: Ruler of Beasts

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Mini Review: I really loved this one! Return to Oz is one of my favorite movies ever, so Nome King, yes! I liked the Ozma/Lion team. I thought they worked great together! But as again, Glinda needs to get out of here! 5 stars!

Title: Order of the Wicked

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Mini Review: This one was really good! This one was very character driven, which was pretty awesome to get me so invested in a novella! I hope to see a lot more of these characters in the series! 5 stars!

Title: Dark Side of the Rainbow

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Mini Review: I absolutely love the cover on this one! There was more of Dorothy in this, and I really liked the main character Polly. I did find Polly to be naive at times, but it was just how she was. The world in this one was magnificent! 4 stars!

Title: The Queen of Oz

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Mini Review: Again, back to Return to Oz (the movie), which I loved Mombi in it. Collecting heads? Awesome! That doesn’t happen here, though. Anyway, I’m going off course here. But I love the character, Mombi, and this novella did not let me down. It is told between two parts, Mombi and Pete. And it was pretty darn interesting uncovering things about these characters! 5 stars!


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Review: Fallen Heir

Title: Fallen Heir

Author: Erin Watt

Date of Publication: August 28th, 2017

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Goodreads Summary:

These Royals will ruin you.

Easton Royal has it all: looks, money, intelligence. His goal in life is to have as much fun as possible. He never thinks about the consequences because he doesn’t have to.

Until Hartley Wright appears, shaking up his easy life. She’s the one girl who’s said no, despite being attracted to him. Easton can’t figure her out and that makes her all the more irresistible.

Hartley doesn’t want him. She says he needs to grow up.

She might be right.

Rivals. Rules. Regrets. For the first time in Easton’s life, wearing a Royal crown isn’t enough. He’s about to learn that the higher you start, the harder you fall.

My Review:

I was not sure how I was going to like this book since Easton was always such a screw up in the last books. Being in his head was pretty intense, and I’m proud to say, Watt did an amazing job of creating such a complex character. I wanted to slap him at times… HARD. I wanted to hug him at times… EVEN HARDER.

Hartley I did like most of the time, but there were times where I wanted to shake her as well, but the book is only told from Easton’s POV, so I could never really know what was going on in her head.

Easton is full of problems, with alcohol being one of his main downfalls. He lashes out and does things that he doesn’t mean to do. Instead, he should really think before doing the things that he does. But that is what makes him feel so incredibly real.

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The ending to this one, is one that I was not expecting AT ALL. I knew there would be a cliffhanger based on the other books, but this was all kinds of unexpected. Next book now pleaseeeeeeeeeee!

 

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Ozmander: Review + Author Interview

Title: Ozmander

Author: Luke Taylor

Date of Publication: June 13th, 2017

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Goodreads Summary:

The first book of The Woven Worlds, Ozmander is the epic tale of a young healer accompanying a mysterious man on a dangerous journey.

My Review:

First off, this book stands out from the normal YA fantasy books I usually read. Second off, I was all about the dragon parts. Can I have some dragon milk, please?

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I am pretty good at guessing stuff, and there was some stuff in here that I didn’t guess! I loved the lead character, Ros, and she was not your normal whiny character. She was great, and she had some great sass.

This book had fun action and great character interaction, and I did not want to put this book down!

“They were puppet masters. Shaping the Woven Worlds as they saw fit.”

Purchase for only .99 on Amazon!

 

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Find Luke on Goodreads

Author Interview:

What made you want to become a writer?
When I was 7 it was just something I started doing and couldn’t stop myself from doing. It was just always a part of who I was. It’s the way I was made.
Who is your favorite character in Ozmander?
Daisey! I can’t compare any of the characters, they’re all great, but Daisey is my favorite for the obvious reasons.
Where did you get the dragon’s milk idea from?
My imagination! I am a seat-of-the-pants writer, always have been, and so everything just sort of happens. I wouldn’t have it any other way. And in this world, yes, there are reptilian dragons, but there are also mammalian dragons, and they are, for all intents and purposes, just giant dogs with wings, and they are a lot of fun and very lovable.
What made you want to write Ozmander?
I have always loved fantasy and for the longest time I wanted to remove all the limits from myself and my writing and write a fantasy series that I was committed to doing for years and years, something that was completely imagination unhindered, and could touch some pretty big concepts and ideas but keep it light and simple and fun and still deep, if that was possible, and thank God, it was the right time, and Ozmander is the right story to open the flood gates to a fantasy world that I hope never stops growing.
What is your next book project?
I have several. I am currently working on the YA Sci-Fi/Horror novel Exospherica, a comic book adaptation for Ozmander, and book two in the Woven Worlds series.
What inspires you to write?
Everything! Truly, everything.
Who is your favorite author?
Roshani Chokshi! I am utterly convinced she is the best writer of all time but her work speaks for itself in that regard.
What advice do you have for writers wanting to be authors.
If you have a story to tell, there is someone that wants to hear it, so write it and make sure it’s finished! There are so many avenues to get your story into people’s hands, but the biggest advice I can give is to be humble and always know the reason why you’re doing what you’re doing. Always know the motive behind your writing.
What is your favorite color?
Sapphire Blue!
What is your favorite book you have written and why.
Vault of Dreams. It’s my favorite because it’s the most personal, but also, it balanced everything I wanted to communicate on a thematic/heart level with everything I wanted to do on a technical level. It felt like a very special book from the moment Aerlyn stole the show. I was swept away just writing it, and I hope that readers will always feel that when they read Vault of Dreams. The whole experience was very liberating and enriching and started me in writing YA Fantasy, which I truly believe is where I belong.
There are some unique terms you use such as Tempus, sanctus, and mystis. Can you describe those?
Yes, those are mind, body, and spirit. Mystis is mind, Tempus is body, and Sanctus is spirit. In the Woven Worlds, there is Craft, or magic, related to each one of those. MystisCraft, TempusCraft, and SanctusCraft. When they are used in complete balance and harmony, that is CovenCraft. I wanted to have a series where the world-building was essential to the character development, and a fantasy universe where the world and the universe was directly shaped by those you read about. Not something that was super dense and just exists for three books for our characters to have their adventures, but something that is completely interactive with the characters both good and bad throughout the course of the series. The Woven Worlds is an interconnected multiverse and it is radically altered, shaped, and affected, by the characters through either mind, body, or spirit, or the combination of all three. As one reads on they will find how these things can be incredibly divisive and cause great conflict, and several books will deeply explore the possibilities of the magic system through the characters.
How many books do you have planned in this series?
I say 10 – 15 just to be safe, but I can guarantee at least 7 books that introduce the main characters of the series. These first books establish all of the heroes that will later join up in the arcs that connect each other and build up to series finale. So, that said, it’s not a solid number, but I say 10 – 15 just to be safe. Also, remember, they will be comics, too! Let us not forget that!
Who designed the cover?
The cover was made by Laura Gordon, whom I have worked with for years. Each one will have a geometric symbol, a one word title, and be a different color. When the series is finished a big old stack of them all together should look pretty cool.
What do you consider to be each of your character’s strengths and weaknesses?
That’s such a great question but I want to answer that without spoilers or giving away the journey and the plot. I don’t really know if I can. I would say, in one way, each character’s weakness is themselves, and you can see in the way that they interact with each other that they are really helping each other get past that. Also, in the same token, certain character’s weakness is another character in the story, and that is addressed as well. I think Nurmedov’s weakness is anything baked, and his strength is his attitude. I hope he shows how essential a great attitude is to survive and overcome extreme difficulty.

 

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