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review 2017-11-18 08:00
Fantastic Beasts And Where To Find Them (Hogwarts Edition)
Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them - J.K. Rowling

Do you know that feeling that when you wake up in the morning and some strange creature is moving in your room, you suddenly get the urge to find out what it is? Yes? Then this is a wonderful book for you. Identify that Fantastic Beast and find out whether or not to panic (but remember to always take a towel with you)! Really useful!

Even if you haven't had any strange encounters with unidentified animals (?) this can still be a really nice book to read if you're a Potterfan...

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review 2017-11-15 23:39
Beasts of Extraordinary Circumstance by Ruth Emmie Lang
Beasts of Extraordinary Circumstance - Ruth Emmie Lang

This review can also be found at Carole's Random Life in Books.

This was such a magical story. I don't read a whole lot of magical realism but it seems that I love them when I do read them. I am not sure that this book would work for every reader since there are a whole lot of strange occurrences but it worked well for me and I am so happy that I decided to pick it up.

This book tells the story of Weylyn Grey. We don't learn his story from Weylyn. Instead, we learn about him in different points in time from others that are close to him. We see Weylyn as others see him and learn all of the incredible things that play a part in his life. Each section of the book shares a very vivid snapshot of this wonderful character.

Weylyn lives a life unlike anyone else. He is different in a lot of ways. He has a certain innocence throughout the book and it is hard not to fall in love with him. I also really liked the characters in the story that shared Weylyn's story. These characters grew and changed over the course of the book and seemed to be positively changed through their association with Weylyn.

There is a bit of magic on nearly every page of this charming story. This was a strange book in a lot of ways but it was strange in the best way possible. There are so many strange things associated with Weylyn and his life that I never knew what to expect. I quickly learned not to even try to guess what Weylyn would do next and just sat back and enjoyed the journey. 

I would highly recommend this book to fans of magical realism. I found this book to be a wonderful story filled with magic. I am very impressed by Ruth Emmie Lang's debut novel and can't wait to read more of her work in the future.

I received an advance reader copy of this book from St. Martin's Press via NetGalley. 

Initial Thoughts
I really enjoyed this book filled with things you wouldn't expect. This probably won't be a book for everyone but it worked well for me.

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review 2017-10-28 15:40
My Review of The Forgotten Beasts of Eld
The Forgotten Beasts of Eld - Patricia A. McKillip

The Forgotten Beasts of Eld by Patricia A. McKillip is a story about Sybel, a wizard that does not need the outside world. She locks herself behind her gates with her enchanted beasts, but when a soldier beckons at her gates with an infant, she about to find out about love and deceit.

 

This story is about love, deceit, and revenge, and the toll it can have on one's heart and mind. It was well written with lively characters, and magical beasts. A wonderful story with clean romance.

 

I received this book from Netgalley in exchange for and honest review.

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review 2017-08-18 13:30
Beasts Made of Night by Tochi Onyebuchi
Beasts Made of Night - Tochi Onyebuchi

When I first heard about this book I was immediately interested. I haven't read a Nigerian influenced fantasy before, so I thought that this would be really unique and have some intriguing concepts. I really liked the idea of this book and I was interested enough in the world to enjoy reading this, but there are also a few aspects of this book that I didn't really enjoy.


I highly enjoyed the idea of sin beasts and the aki. It's unique and unlike anything I've ever read before, so I was really interested in that. I would have liked things to be a little more clear with the world building though, like what math has to do with the Unnamed. It wasn't entirely clear to me why the aki are treated so poorly by the Mages and the rest of their society, other than this is what happens. The ideas were great, I just enjoy a little more clarification when it comes to things I'm not really familiar with and especially in fantasy worlds.

 

The main plot wasn't anything out of the ordinary, which was kind of disappointing, but it wasn't boring. I didn't really understand the reasoning behind Taj getting brought to the palace just to be shipped off to train aki. It seemed like an easy was for Taj and the princess to meet, but it didn't really make a whole lot of sense, especially considering how aki are viewed in this society. There was a lot of build up to the ending and most of it felt a little like filler. I wish that the more exciting stuff at the end of the book had taken up more of the story. It wasn't really a rushed ending, but I would have enjoyed it more if it was more drawn out. I haven't seen anything about a sequel yet, but there must be one coming because the ending was a little bit of a cliffhanger.


While the characters weren't bad, they also didn't feel unique. There was nothing that really stood out to me about any of the characters. Taj is super special and it's never really explained why and it doesn't really seem necessary for people to keep saying that. Having a super special main character is something that bothers me because it's essentially saying that this person is important and the hero because they're so special. Taj really cares about his fellow aki, but I didn't really feel a connection to the people he cares about. The romance felt like it came out of nowhere. As soon as Taj and the princess met, it seemed like they were into each other and I didn't really get it. It seemed like Taj liked her just because she was pretty and the princess, which isn't a good reason to like someone.


I especially enjoyed the writing during scenes with the sin beasts. I could vividly picture the beasts and the action that was happening. The descriptions of the world were also very easy to picture. Where the writing fell flat was with the character development. Overall, I did like the story though, which is unusual for me because good character development is something that is usually a must.


I did have a few issues with the book, but as a whole I liked it, mainly because it was so unique to me. If there is a sequel, then I may pick it up, but I won't be in rush. 


*I received this from First Reads in exchange for an honest review

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text 2017-08-17 09:08
DNF: Beasts Made of Night
Beasts Made of Night - Tochi Onyebuchi

I received a copy from Penguin First to Read.

 

I used some of my points to secure a copy of this one. I was quite looking forward to it. While it's not bad, at 187 pages, I've come to the point where I just don't care anymore. The concept is quite fascinating. In this Nigerian inspired fantasy, the hero Taj is an Aki, a Sin Eater. The Royal Family of the fictional city of Kos are supposed to be pure and free of sin, sin comes in the form of Sin Beasts which the Aki consume and absorb into their skin in the form of tattoos. Interesting enough.

 

But there was something off about the plot and the execution of the story. I can't say I felt particularly attached to any of the characters. The world building was interesting enough but the writing was kind of flat. And the plot seemed to jump from one thing to the next. There was a barely there romance that felt way too insta-lovey for my liking. He meets with a princess once or twice and then he's fascinated with her. Understandable, but again, there was something that just wasn't there to make it work for me.

 

It's getting to the point where I'm not looking forward to finishing, and as I said early, I'm bored with and don't care enough to find out how its end. There is definite potential in the writing and as I said the world building was interesting and quite unique. While this book was not for me I would certainly be interested in seeing more from this author.

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