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review 2019-06-15 17:15
The Grace Year
The Grace Year - Kim Liggett

White ribbons for the young girls, red for the grace year girls, and black for the wives.
Innocence. Blood. Death.

The Grace Year has gotten already a lot of hype. Pitched as a combination of two very popular books you can easily see why. Heck, this is why I requested an ARC in the first place.

 

However, I was disappointed in the end, as in my personal opinion, the book needs more polish. I could fill this review with things I liked, with highlighted quotes, but I won't. Sure, the society depicted is very dark and the author walks you through the story with a lot of skill giving you snippets of the way things work, but (that dreadful word) a lot of the relationships felt a) predictable and b) not fully fleshed out.

 

And that's mainly where the book was weak: the characters. From the main protagonist, whom we follow trying to piece the story together, to the side characters, who are in the end just that: side characters.

 

Additionally, there were a lot of instances when I wanted to know more about them, which brings me to another problem I had with the book: the pacing. I read the story on a kindle, which showed the reading progress in the corner. At around 70%, the pace picked up and by the end I felt like whole sections were skipped. Even the ending left more to be desired.

 

Overall, this will be discussed a lot when it will be published eventually in the fall. It will probably be hailed as one of the best blends of dystopian and feminist books ever. I won't be in that crowd. I will tell you what I honestly thought of it: it's an enjoyable read that has its moments and all the makings of a great book, hence the 3 ½ stars but it's far from the best ever written. 

 

Reviews Published80%Professional Reader

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review 2019-06-11 16:56
Sister BFFs
Sister BFFs - Philippa Rice

Sister BFFs follows a pair of sisters who are not quite adults, but trying desperately to act like them. From job searches to embarrassing encounters with former crushes, these twenty-something sisters navigate the ups, downs, and in-betweens of early adulthood – together. Loosely based on the author’s own life, Sister BFFs celebrates the complicated love-hate relationship between sisters to hilarious effect. They tease and trick each other but always stay loyal.

This was a fun read!

Philippa Rice wrote Soppy an adorable graphic novel that featured real life moments with her boyfriend. In this one however she illustrates memories with her sister. Having a sister myself, I felt a personal connection to a lot of the stories. 

 

That one actually happened not long ago, as we were watching on YouTube excellent auditions in talent shows:

 

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review 2019-06-08 16:41
Romanov - A Retelling
Romanov - Nadine Brandes

 I finally realized why Papa always asked me to forgive. Because it takes more strength and courage to forgive than it does to enact revenge.❞

The story of the famous Romanov family and their downfall is re-imagined by Nadine Brandes. Anastasia narrates their story of how they coped in exile as a family. The author of course took some creative liberties with the story adding magical elements, giving Anastasia the power of a spell master. An ability that isn't fully explored and just acted for me as a major plot device. Politics aside, the story featured insta-love and underlied  religious aspects that I didn't really liked.

 

Ultimately, Romanov by Nadine Brandes was a disappointing read. Retellings based on real life characters are always tricky: the writer has to work with the fact that the reader will be familiar with the history of their characters. But in order for the book to stand out they have to make the story their own. The latter is where this book was weak. I never connected with any of the characters in the Romanov family, as they felt more one dimensional descriptions of their real life counterparts. If you want a historical retelling done right, take a look at And I Darken by Kiersten White.

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text 2017-02-14 14:05
Happy Valentine's Day!

Wishing a "Happy Valentine's Day" to my fellow book lovers! Click here to send some bookish love to your significant other! xxx

~M.

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review 2017-02-13 02:46
Descender vol. 1
Descender Volume 1: Tin Stars (Descender Tp) - Jeff Lemire,Dustin Nguyen,Dustin Nguyen

Descender, Vol. 1: Tin Stars has some exceptional artwork and the story is very engaging. I recently watched the series, "Westworld", sparking my interest in stories with androids. This series by the talented Jeff Lemire certainly doesn't disappoint. The main character is the cutest bot ever! Illustrated beautifully the first volume begins with TIM 21 embarking on a journey to find his human companion, Andy. Full of mystery this strange new world is very intriguing! Little bot, big universe, indeed.

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