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review 2017-07-04 05:53
Book #2 of the Grisha...has left me feeling kind of confused...
Siege and Storm - Leigh Bardugo

 

 

Book Title:  Siege And Storm

Author:  Leigh Bardugo

Narration:  Lauren Fortgang

Series:  The Grisha #2

Genre:  YA, Fantasy

Setting:  Ravka, in the Grisha-verse

Source:  Audible Audiobook

 

 

 

Add to Goodreads

 

 

 

 

Book Theme Song

(this link will take you to my tumblr post with video)

Unbreakable by Firelight  --For Alina…because she's quickly becoming unbreakable and she's going to kick some serious butt, soon.♫

 

 

 

⇝OVERALL RATING⇜

4/5 STARS

B+

 

My Thoughts

 

 

There's a lot of reviews out there for this; so I'm going to keep this short.  Sometimes RL can really get in the way of your overall enjoyment of a book, and while I tried not to let it reflect in my overall rating of this book…it did make it so I was unable to stay focused while listening to this.  Although, the middle did drag and seem rather blah at times.  I don't know if it was me or the book, half the time. 

 

 

The site where I found the map above is really interesting…a grishaverse wiki…this really helps to fill in the gaps where I've missed pertinent info due to my spacing out.

 

 

Ratings Breakdown

 

Plot:  4/5

Main Characters:  4.8/5

Secondary Characters:  4/5

The Feels:  3.8/5

Addictiveness:  3.5/5

Theme or Tone:  5/5

Flow (Writing Style):  3.7/5

Backdrop (World Building):  4.3/5

Originality:  5/5

Book Cover:  4/5

Narration:  4.5/5

Ending:  4.5/5  Cliffhanger:  more of a "to be continued" cliffy…

 

Will I continue this series? I think so…I just need to wait until I can give my full attention.

 

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text 2017-06-30 20:07
June Re-Cap...A seriously crazy month.
The Deal - Elle Kennedy
One of Us Is Lying - Karen M. McManus
If I Fix You - Abigail Johnson Dodge
The Girl from Everywhere - Heidi Heilig
Dragon Teeth: A Novel - Michael Crichton
Gods of Anthem - Logan Keys
Underwater - Marisa Reichardt
Siege and Storm - Leigh Bardugo
Of Dreams and Rust - Sarah Fine

This year, June has been a month from hell...It started out with my birthday/Open House for my daughter, then a few days later her graduation ceremony, that all went okay...just very hectic.  Two days after my oldest daughter graduated high school, my youngest daughter and I went up the road a mile to Subway and came home and a car had driven into our house.  Like, seriously, drove through the front porch and the garage...then proceeded to go through the wall of the garage into the woods behind the house, where he hit a tree.  

 

 

 

 

 

This photo is the aftermath of what happened...apparently the guy driving had a seizure. It's pretty scary, to pull into your driveway and see that...insane.  But, hey...now we get to do some remodeling.  The month closed out with some serious medical stuff for me, that I'm unfortunately, still dealing with.  :(

 

Anyway, my reading hit a bit of slump (as in I found it hard to concentrate on reading and listening at all), with everything going on lately.  

 

(Kindle eBook) The Deal by Elle Kennedy

Finish Date:  06/06/17

5 Stars

 

(Audiobook) One of Us is Lying by Karen M McManus

Finish Date:  06/07/17

5 Stars

 

(Kindle eBook) If I Fix You by Abigail Johnson

Finish Date:  06/11/17

4.3/5 Stars

 

(Audiobook) The Girl From Everywhere by Heidi Heilig

Finish Date:  06/13/17

2/5 Stars

 

(Audiobook) Dragon Teeth by Michael Crichton

Finish Date:  06/19/17

4/5 Stars

 

(Netgalley Arc) The Last City by Logan Keys

Previously titled Gods of Anthem (booklikes won't update)

Finish Date:  06/20/17

3.8/5 Stars

 

(Kindle eBook) Underwater by Marisa Reichardt (review pending)

Finish Date:  06/23/17

4.7/5 Stars

 

(Audiobook) Siege and Storm by Leigh Bardugo (review pending)

Finish Date:  06/26/17

4/5 Stars

 

(Kindle eBook) Of Dreams and Rust by Sarah Fine (review pending)

Finish Date:  06/30/17

4.5/5 Stars

 

9 Books Total (3,074 Pages Read)

4 Audiobooks, 4 eBooks, and 1 Netgalley Arc.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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review SPOILER ALERT! 2017-06-22 01:51
I loved reading this one!
Shadow and Bone - Leigh Bardugo

I was so immersed in the book I didn’t even realize what time it was when I was halfway (about 2 AM in the morning.) Yes it was that good. I loved everything about it.

The plot was fast moving and good - although it had some different elements, it is with the same template of: “Girl finds out she’s got extraordinary powers to make a difference in the world and is sent to a boarding school to enhance those skills”. Although it’s not any different from those types of books out there, the characters and the setting make up for it and provides an exciting read.

It seems like the language is based on Russian words (correct me if I’m wrong here.) With the terminology and setting loosely based on the language. I found this pretty interesting and fun to read, it certainly does provide a particular theme and flavor to the novel which adds to the joy of reading the book.

Character wise, I loved just about everyone in the book. Alina isn’t your typical character. She’s got a wry humor and has a tendency to be hard on herself. I really like her though. She’s not a damsel in distress, she’s a tomboy, but when push comes to shove she can look like a girly girl and enjoy it if she wants to. Her character develops throughout the book and she goes through some real tough times. She’s not whiny about it but she takes it all in almost to the point of admitting self defeat. I actually liked reading this about her. It’s makes her more human.

 

 

 

 

*****spoilers below you’ve been warned*****

 

Now who to choose? Mal or the Darkling? I fell for the Darkling. I really did. I loved his mystery and his charm and I wanted to kick myself in the butt for falling for him as hard as Alina did. He just HAD to be the bad one. Well, sometimes we just fall for the bad ones don’t we? ;)

I liked Mal too though. He was everything you wanted in a guy friend about to be boyfriend. He was just as charming but he had the good boy persona on him. I’d have to say, Alina had some good prospects (if only the Darkling didn’t have such a horrible agenda.)

Overall I loved this book and I’m definitely going to grab the second one. Can’t wait to see what happens!

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text 2017-06-01 23:25
May 2017 Wrap-up.
Crucible of Gold (Temeraire Series #7) - Naomi Novik
Scarlet - Marissa Meyer
Six of Crows - Leigh Bardugo
Under Witch Moon - Maria E. Schneider

I'm happy I have more to list than will feature in the 10 + we can link at top of post.

 

I only had one DNF (and one that I stopped so soon I don't even consider that starting).  

 

Unusually for me, I discovered quite a few new authors.  

 

I didn't read a lot of straight-up science fiction of the sort with spaceships, new worlds, aliens and robots (except for Scarlet which sort of counts by having cyborg and lunar colony if you can get past how the spaceship piloting resembled bad teenage clunker-automobile parallel parking the way they zigged it about in earth's atmosphere with immediate corrections ...).  I need to correct that next month, but I'm pretty caught up on my SF series.

 

I'm also discovering that — while I enjoy character growth and when the plot/story has twists or gets shaken up — I don't like it when author changes the underpinnings or basics of what I thought I knew about characters and worldbuilding logic from reading previous books.  Reveal surprises, sure, even relationship ones; toss out everything developed earlier in series, not so much.  Thankfully this month there were no books completely with  characters having amnesia plus time travel to relive a previous storyline ... those are just aaaaarrrggghhh... (first third of Blood of Tyrants Laurence had amnesia and that whole unnecessary part dropped rating for me).

 

Not a lot of reviews.  Partly a mood I'm in.  Mainly bcause so many were in series where likely however I reviewed previous books is how I'd review that book.  Happily in many  cases because it's just harder for me to express why I loved a book enough to rate it ★★★★☆ to ★★★★★ .

 

 Silver Shadows - Richelle Mead Premiere - Melody Carlson  My Soul to Take - Rachel Vincent  

 

Silver Shadows - Richelle Mead , I rated ★★★★☆ , paranormal, #5 in Bloodlines (Alchemists spinoff from Vampire Academy) series.

 

Premiere - Melody Carlson , I did not rate.  Characters are in college so guess it's New Adult but reads YA.  An interesting premise, lots happens, a quick read of first book in a series my library had complete set.  I had mixed feelings on main character I initially liked but between them seeming more YA, the situations too unrealistic, the MC so "perfect" and accepting of submissive role to more glamorous sister and constantly praying to God as if he was her own personal genie or life coach — I decided series wasn't for me.  Likely appeal to others, particularly teens.  #1 in On the Runway series.

 

My Soul to Take - Rachel Vincent , I rated ★★★½☆ , paranormal, #1 in Soul Screamers series (new series by familiar author with banshees and grim reapers).  Some YA moments.

 

The Ruby Circle - Richelle Mead  Victory of Eagles - Naomi Novik  Six of Crows - Leigh Bardugo  o

 

The Ruby Circle - Richelle Mead , I rated ★★★½☆ , paranormal, #6 in Bloodlines series.

 

Victory of Eagles - Naomi Novik , I rated a resounding squeezing fanpoodle ★★★★★, fantasy (alternate history of Napoleonic War with dragons), #5 in Temeraire series.

 

Six of Crows - Leigh Bardugo , I rated ★★★★★, fantasy, review is here , #1 in Dregs series from a new to me author (despite the glowing ★★★★★ rating, I suspect I should have read author's Grishna series first).

 

Empire of Storms - Sarah J. Maas  Daughter of Smoke & Bone - Laini Taylor  Under Witch Moon - Maria E. Schneider  

 

Empire of Storms - Sarah J. Maas , I rated ★★★★½ , fantasy, #5 in Throne of Glass series.

 

Daughter of Smoke & Bone - Laini Taylor , I rated ★★★★☆ , urban fantasy (paranormal romance? fantasy because of Otherworld characters?), review is here , #1 in same named series, new to me author -- what a voice and an atmosphere this author creates.

 

Under Witch Moon - Maria E. Schneider , I rated ★★★½☆ , paranormal mystery, review is here , #1 in Moon Shadows series, new to me author discovered via Leafmarks, likely someone more into mysteries would rate higher, one of few indie works I read this year although could not tell it was self-published from writing/editing.

 

 

Death Before Decaf: A Java Jive Mystery - Caroline Fardig Mug Shot: A Java Jive Mystery - Caroline Fardig  A Whole Latte Murder - Caroline Fardig  

 

Death Before DecafMug Shot, and A Whole Latte Murder - Caroline Fardig .  Binge read first three books of cozy mystery series Java Jive Mystery because really enjoyed first two books.  Discovered first book from a friend's review in goodreads ( read first two via library overdrive borrow then bought third).  Main character engaged me, wacky stories, not necessarily the greatest mystery in the books.  Possibly a side effect of binge reading, but I did not like the third book (murked everything up throwing too much into it, too many clues, too many characters, too many too easily dismissed injuries/assaults and the whodunnit depended way too much on twisting what we thought we knew of characters).  May give it another chance if book #4 hits library; may not.

 

Closer to the Chest - Mercedes Lackey  Scarlet - Marissa Meyer  My Soul to Save - Rachel Vincent  

 

Closer to the Chest - Mercedes Lackey , I rated ★★★½☆ (wavered between that and ★★★★☆), review is here, fantasy, #3 in Herald Spy series (Valdemar Universe).  If you like Mags, you'll like reading more of his story.

 

Scarlet - Marissa Meyer , I rated ★★★★½ , fantasy, #2 in Lunar Chronicle series which I so regret taking so long to read -- it was just so overhyped and YA sounding I wrongly put off thinking could not live up to rep.  Series will quickly suck you in.

 

My Soul to Save - Rachel Vincent , ★★★★☆ , paranormal, #2 in Soul Screamers, less YA with character growth but still rushing in because too compassionate.

 

 

Tongues of Serpents (Temeraire Series #6) - Naomi Novik  Crucible of Gold (Temeraire Series #7) - Naomi Novik  Blood of Tyrants - Naomi Novik 

 

 

Tongues of Serpents  - Naomi Novik , ★★★★★ , fantasy , #6 in Temeraire series.

 Crucible of Gold , ★★★★☆, fantasy, #7 in Temeraire series.

 Blood of Tyrants , ★★★½☆ (although parts 2 and 3 I'd rate higher), fantasy, #8 and penultimate in Temeraire series .

 

 

Stakes & Stilettos - Michelle Rowen Blackveil - Kristen Britain  

 

Stakes & Stilettos - Michelle Rowen , ★★★☆☆ , paranormal romance, review is here , #4 in Immortality Bites, author almost lost me with the twists and character changes introduced plus leaving main character's curse to be resolved in next book.

 

Blackveil - Kristen Britain , ★★★½☆ , epic fantasy, review is here ,  #4 in Green Rider.  I cannot believe I'm saying this after how much I loved the first three books, but this one was too long.  I may be dropping the series because everyone says next book is even more "way too long" plus twists the series from traditional fantasy into steampunk (why on earth couldn't Ms. Britain just start a new steampunk series if wanting to foray into steampunk?).

 

Ratings scale used in absence of a booklikes suggested rating scale:

★★★★★ = All Time Favorite 
★★★★½ = Extraordinary Book. Really Loved It.
★★★★☆ = Loved It.
★★★½☆ = Really Liked.
★★★☆☆ = Liked.
★★½☆☆ = Liked parts; parts only okay. Would read more by author.
★★☆☆☆ = Average.   Okay. 
★½☆☆☆ = Disliked or meh? but kept me reading in hopes would get better.
★☆☆☆☆ = Loathed It. Possibly DNF and a torturous read.
½☆☆☆☆ = So vile was a DNF or should have been. Cannot imagine anyone liking.  (Might also be just an "uploaded" word spew or collection that should not be dignified by calling itself a "published book." If author is going batshit crazy in the blogosphere over reviews -- I now know why they are getting bad reviews.  Or maybe author should take remedial classes for language written in until basic concepts like using sentences sink in. Is author even old enough to sign a publishing contract or do they need a legal guardian to sign for them?)

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review 2017-05-14 18:14
Six of Crows
Six of Crows - Leigh Bardugo

Six of Crows can probably best be described as "Oceans Eleven in a fantasy universe." A gang of criminals can get immensely rich, beyond their wildest dreams, if they pull off an impossible crime - in this case, breaking a man out of the world's toughest prison.

 

It manages to be a good read despite having 6 or 7 narrators.  My heart drops as a general rule when I see that many narrators listed, because mostly authors can't pull off that much character creation.  Leigh Bardugo did a pretty good job here - she labels the narrator of each chapter up front (so you don't have to guess), doesn't switch in mid-chapter or even mid-paragraph (I've seen that, and it's not pretty), and they're each distinct characters - you can tell them apart, they all have believable motivations, and they each read differently.

 

Bardugo does not info dump, I am thankful to say.

 

The novel ends on quite a cliffhanger.  (I was not happy, as I was under the impression that this was a stand alone.  Also my library does not have the sequel.)

 

I was also not happy that the novel ended at 76% of the ebook.  Did we really need a quarter of the space for not one, but two previews of other books?

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