Vampire Academy by Richelle Mead, A Review

What a great beginning to this series! I am very pleasantly surprised at how much I liked this book!

Lissa and Rose are best friends, as close as humanly possible, and more because they are not exactly human. Lissa is a Moroi, basically a Vampire. But dont confuse her with a Strigoi, its these kinds of Vampires that are dangerous. Rose, however, is a Dhampir, and in this case it means she is Lissa’s Guardian, her protector. Lissa has complete trust in Rose, so much so that they have a special bond few others have: Rose can tune into Lissa and feel her emotions. She can even tune into Lissa to see from her perspective and know exactly what’s happening to her.

After they both survived the car crash responsible for the deaths of Lissa’s parents and brother, Andre, let’s just say, their lives got complicated and they ran away from the Academy hoping to feel safe. A lot more about why they ran away is covered in the book but I dont want to spoil it for anyone by going into details, suffice it to say that two years later they were caught and returned to the Academy.

They are both 17 at this point, and finishing up their time at school. It was a little overwhelming for me how accurately the author describes a high school like atmosphere. The way the rumor mill worked and particularly what the rumors were about, was dead on exactly true to what people talked about in my school, which is who is doing what with who! I’m sure I dont need to elaborate on that.

This author did a great job of discussing mental health, in my opinion. I thought she described cutting in such an easy to understand way, “to let IT out”. “It” in this context being the feelings, the emotions, to survive the pain inside of her head this is what Lissa did. I would like to add, that Rose assisted her in getting help with this. It’s just awesome to even breach this subject, to create awareness that there is help and also to create understanding which leads to weakening the stigma against mental illness, in this case Depression.

I recommend this for curling up in bed, rainy day, not feeling good maybe, reading. Lol. Well, I recommend it for anytime reading as well. Let’s just say, I recommend it, and leave it at that.

Thanks for reading my review and happy reading!!!

Season of Storms by Andrzej Sapkowski, A Review

This is not what I expected or thought it would be, which was a continuation of the main story after Lady of the Lake. And yet, in a sense it is… it really must be read after that book. It’s kind of confusing. Season of Storms, the main story in this book not including some Interludes and the Epilogue, takes place between the two prequels The Last Wish and Sword of Destiny. Okay, I’m just glad to have that point settled for myself, personally.

This story is fairly fun to read if you can get past some of the awkward structuring of how the dialogues are written. I feel like the characters do not always communicate in the most natural and relatable of ways. It feels like a written dialogue and not like I’m reading an actual conversation. The story, however, is really intriguing for The Witcher because it focuses on Geralt losing his two swords, one steel and the other silver(mostly), and how he gets through attacks from monsters, crazy sorcerers, and also protecting people, without having access to a decent sword or any sword at all at times. It shows how it pays to be a decent person to people, especially dwarves because they will really have your back.

The ending of this book, the Epilogue really, is the best part. Nimue from Lady of the Lake makes an appearance, which is about 105 years in the future, and the reader learns that not all endings to fairytales are necessarily final. Very exciting news and I have so many questions. What happened with Ciri next? What, exactly, is going on with Geralt and Yennefer? And, that’s all I can say without spoilers. So, if you wanna know, then read the books!

This is a must read for fans of The Witcher!

Thanks for reading my review and happy reading!!!

The Last Smile in Sunder City by Luke Arnold, A Review

Meet Fetch Phillips: Man for Hire. This alcoholic, who also has a penchant for pain killers, has been living bottle to bottle and job to job while trying to come to terms with his past and the guilt he feels. Fetch is a detective in Sunder City, a place populated by not only all kinds of people, but all kinds of magical being, even if there is no more magic.

Magic disappeared 6 years ago, when the Coda happened. The Coda is when humans tried to capture and control magic at its essence by using machinery. This caused the natural magic of the world to stop, which changed the lives of magical beings, like werewolves and wizards, forever. This also made the post-Coda magical community view humans as pariahs, which a lot of humans honestly deserve.

I loved how the author spent plenty of time building the history of the main character, Fetch. He doesn’t start out as the most loveable person, but turns into a character I cant help but adore and completely understand.

This story is a blast to read, fast to get through and hard to put down. I highly recommend it for fantasy fans, for humans and non-human alike!

Thanks for reading my review and happy reading!!!

The Lady of the Lake by Andrzej Sapkowski,  A Review

This story begins with Ciri relating her version of what has come to pass to another legendary character, although not a character from this particular legend. This book highlights the depths of storytelling with legends within legends and myths within myths.

Geralt is currently “wintering” in Toussaint, a land of fairytale beauty. Yennefer, however, is a prisoner in Vilgeforte’s citadel. But although her captor and associates are trying to break her down, she keeps her spirit and stays the strong-willed sorceress I love.

This second to last book has everything. Daring rescues and all out battle, particularly the Battle of Brenna which is the last in the war that has been raging between the Northlands and Nilfgaard.

Although I loved this book, the ending makes me wonder exactly how this story is going to continue when it feels like it practically already has finished.

The Tower of Swallows by Andrzej Sapkowski, A Review

Right now it is the autumnal equinox, Velen, and the people are celebrating and feasting throughout the land. However, as night fell, this did not hold back the nightmares that came to life, galloping across the midnight skies. Perhaps this was a sign, a sign for a specific occurrence linking many individuals and leaving them awake and gasping, wondering about the meaning of these horrific dreams or visions.

Ciri, very luckily, finds herself in the hands of the learned hermit, Vysogota, and in his hidden and out of the way dwelling in the marshlands. As Vysogota heals Ciri, particularly her wounded face, she reveals her story of what brought her to this place at this time. Vysogota matches her embittered spirit with his own, and they find common ground to create a healing friendship and perhaps lose some of the bitterness and gain some inner strength to keep fighting.

I will say, I did figure out what happened to Yennefer… only to finish this book and be in the exact same situation… not having any idea if Yennefer is dead or alive. I have an idea, but I wish it was clearer. The Witcher, Geralt, is still among his friends, however his story seems to stop about midway through this particular book and I really cannot say what state he actually is in at this time. Time, that particularly would be a good thing to be made more clear in this book.

So… I really did love this book. I did immensely enjoy the intriguing politics and the intricate details that may make other readers, well, bored! I can see how some people would feel that way, and, in fact, I talked to a few people with that opinion. However, that doesn’t mean it is how everyone or even the majority of readers feel, just the handful I talked to.

I have already started The Lady of the Lake, which is the fifth installment and second to last in this series. So far, I am very excited and thoroughly enjoying it!

Thanks for reading my review and happy reading!!

Baptism of Fire by Andrzej Sapkowski, A Review

This, the third book in the Witcher series, begins with Geralt healing in the forest of Brokilon with the help of the dryads while the outside world has erupted in chaos. This is where the reader meets Milva, AKA Maria, whom I did not have a good first impression of, however, that changed throughout the book as I got to know her better.

Milva brings Geralt news of the outside world, accidentally leading him to believe that Ciri has been taken by the enemy, Nilfgaard. This belief sets the Witcher on his journey to rescue Ciri with the help of initially just the bard Dandelion. Geralt’s retinue grows to include a diverse crew of misfits who refuse to leave his side. Much like Ciri and her involvement in the gang, The Rats, Geralt is overcome by unexpected friendships.

The land they travel through is war torn and full of horrific scenes of the aftermath of battle and pillaging. The ghastly leavings of war are not only found in the remains of burned villages, but in the gathering of desperate people. Desperate people that will point fingers and blame anyone weaker than them resulting in pure savagery.

This book eluded to much that was prophesied and did manage to answer some questions. Another thrilling read in The Witcher series, but for all the questions it DID answer, it still left me with more unanswered questions that are driving me crazy!

Next up is the fourth book in the series, The Tower of Swallows! Thanks for reading my review and happy reading!!

The Brightest Fell by Nupur Chowdhury, A Review

This story begins with Jehan finding himself buried in paperwork, which he hates. However, he may be expecting the boredom of this seemingly endless paperwork but what he doesn’t expect is the explosive attack on the nearby metro.

Jehan works at the Institute and he is the creator of a drug called Amven which is supposed to make people less violent and more docile. However, he may have his own beneficent ideals for this drugs use, but others want to use it to gain power. Jehan wants to keep the drug out of the hands of politicians, even if that means betraying his close friend and mentor, the Prime Minister.

This is when the reader will meet a few other very colorful characters, the son and daughter of the prime minister, Abhijat and Rito. Abhijat left the army to revenge his father and becomes the prime example of when hatred and vengeance blind a person to the truth.

This book is full of intense political maneuvering but the author makes it so much fun to read and easy to understand. Chowdhury is a pro at writing intriguing dynamic characters and, I must say, that this book went in a direction that I never saw coming and I LOVED IT. The serious nature of political manipulation mixed with the appropriate and distinctive sense of humor the author uses makes for a genuinely fun read that I could not put down.

I highly recommend this book and I am looking forward to seeing more from the author, Nupur Chowdhury!

Thanks for reading my review and happy reading!!!