Grace and Fury – ARC Review

Grace and Fury

By Tracy Banghart

Details:


Title: Grace and Fury


Author: Tracy Banghart


Publisher: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers


Pub. Date: July 31st, 2018



Synopsis:


In a world where women have no rights, sisters Serina and Nomi Tessaro face two very different fates: one in the palace, the other in prison.

Serina has been groomed her whole life to become a Grace–someone to stand by the heir to the throne as a shining, subjugated example of the perfect woman. But when her headstrong and rebellious younger sister, Nomi, catches the heir’s eye, it’s Serina who takes the fall for the dangerous secret that Nomi has been hiding.

Now trapped in a life she never wanted, Nomi has only one way to save Serina: surrender to her role as a Grace until she can use her position to release her sister. This is easier said than done. A traitor walks the halls of the palace, and deception lurks in every corner. But Serina is running out of time, imprisoned on an island where she must fight to the death to survive and one wrong move could cost her everything.


Disclaimer: The publisher provided me with ARC of Grace and Fury through Netgalley in exchange for my honest review.

 

My Review 


            What do you get when you mix together badass female characters, an amazing plot, and an interesting world? The answer: Grace and Fury. From the second I started this book I knew it was going to be fantastic, and it did not let me down. Tracy Banghart tells the story of two sisters, Nomi and Serina, in such a way that draws you in from the first sentence and leaves you begging for more at the last. I don’t even know where to begin in writing this review because I loved everything so, so much, and I can guarantee that none of my readers want to read a ten page essay on how much I enjoyed this book.

            The world building throughout the story is great. Set in an Italian inspired fantasy world where women are oppressed, the reader immediately gets the sense that something isn’t right. Girls aren’t allowed to learn how to read or write, and to do so is a capital crime. Men rule over everything, and the women who don’t submit to them are sent off to the Hawaiian inspired prison at Mount Ruin. Banghart does a fantastic job in describing both the prison at Mount Ruin as well as the palace, which also happens to work as a prison for some of its inhabitants.

            I will admit that I was a little worried when I read the first couple chapters of Grace and Fury--it gave me major Selection vibes with the whole Heir and Grace thing, and anyone who knows me knows that I strongly dislike the selection, but luckily that ended as soon as the Heir selected his Graces and I WAS SHOOK! I love it when a story catches me off guard, and that’s what Grace and Fury did from the very beginning. There are a multitude of twists and turns which are absolutely wonderful and unpredictable. The ending in particular left me absolutely shell shocked, and I kept trying to flip the page on my kindle, hoping there was more because I was not ready for it to be over. Banghart leaves the story on a cliffhanger which has the reader already begging to have book two in their hands (I NEED IT NOW!!!). 

            While both the setting and the story itself are incredible, it’s the characters who truly steal the show. Nomi and Serina couldn’t be more opposite: Serina has trained her whole life to become a Grace and be submissive to men, while Nomi is a rebel who constantly fights the role which has been set for her. Both girls end up somewhere they never could have imagined, and they have to fight to survive. If someone asked me to pick my favorite of the two sisters, I would not be able. Both characters go through so much throughout the story, and neither are the same person they were at the beginning of the story at the end. Their character devlopment is fantastic, and I can only imagine how much effort Banghart put into bringing these characters to life. Even for the side characters, Banghart does an incredible amount of characterization. She gives each and every one their own backstory, and she doesn’t skip over any details. Personally, I really enjoyed getting to know about the others on mount doom–specifically Oracle and Val, but I also liked getting to know those within the palace–especially towards the end when I started to doubt everything I’d been told. The characters are the shining stars of Grace and Fury, and the character development throughout the story is truly some of the best I’ve ever seen.


In conclusion, I give Grace and Fury five out of five stars for being a fantastic opening to a new series as well as a fun story that promotes feminism within its pages. Grace and Fury is a story of strong women and family love, and I highly recommend it to anyone and everyone. Be sure to pre-order a copy today because I can guarantee this is a book everyone is going to be talking about.

If you would like to pre-order Grace and Fury

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 There’s also a pre-order campaign going on right now, so you can get some pretty cool swag if you submit your receipt. Click here to learn more.

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The Supervillain and Me – Book Review

The Supervillain and Me

By Danielle Banas

Details:


Title: The Supervillain and Me


Author: Danielle Banas


Publisher: Swoon Reads


Pub. Date: July 10th, 2018



Synopsis:


Never trust a guy in spandex.

In Abby Hamilton’s world, superheroes do more than just stop crime and save cats stuck in trees—they also drink milk straight from the carton and hog the television remote. Abby’s older brother moonlights as the famous Red Comet, but without powers of her own, following in his footsteps has never crossed her mind.

That is, until the city’s newest vigilante comes bursting into her life.

After saving Abby from an attempted mugging, Morriston’s fledgling supervillain Iron Phantom convinces her that he’s not as evil as everyone says, and that their city is under a vicious new threat. As Abby follows him deeper into their city’s darkest secrets, she comes to learn that heroes can’t always be trusted, and sometimes it’s the good guys who wear black.


Disclaimer: The publisher provided me with ARC of The Supervillain and Me through Netgalley in exchange for my honest review.

 

My Review:  


            As soon as I saw The Supervillain and Me on NetGalley, I knew I had to read it. I’m a die hard superhero fan and a die hard YA fan, so the combination of the two was practically screaming my name. I started reading it the minute I was approved…and finished it two hours later. I can already tell you that Danielle Banas is going to become one of my insta buy authors–her writing style has to be one of my favorite that I’ve read in a while, and I can’t wait to see what she comes out with next.

            This story is so freaking funny and cute!!!! Banas does a fantastic job of pulling the reader in with her fun and easy to follow writing style, and I found myself laughing out loud on several occasions. Overall, I thought the story was perfectly paced with no dull moments, and I just couldn’t put it down. The one complaint I have is that, although I enjoyed the story, it was somewhat cheesy and cliche. The cheesiness didn’t bother me at all because that’s to be expected with anything involving superheroes, but I was able to figure out one of the big reveals of the story very early on. Even though I found the plot to be a bit predictable during certain parts, it didn’t do too much to diminish my enjoyment of the story. I also wish we got a little bit more background on Morriston and why it’s so crime ridden when other cities don’t seem to have that big of a crime problem. Overall, I thought the story was super fun and action packed, and I really enjoyed it.

            The characters were probably my favorite part of The Supervillain and Me, and I could tell that Banas had spent a lot of time creating each and every one of them. Abby was a wonderful main character, and an absolute theatre nerd. She had so many wonderful lines that had me in stitches, and her romance with the Iron Phantom was absolutely swoon worthy. The Iron Phantom himself was a fun character as well, and I enjoyed getting to know both of his personas. Each of Abby and the Iron Phantom’s interactions in Abby’s bedroom were some of my favorite scenes of the entire book. The other supers we get to meet in the book, Red Comet, Abby’s older brother, and Fish Boy, were both really fun as well. I loved getting to know each of  their back stories and see both of them in action. Sarah, Abby’s best friend, might’ve stolen the show for me because she reminds me so much of some of my friends who have One Direction shrines as opposed to Red Comet shrines. I love the description of  her car as well as her reaction when she discovers Red Comet’s true identity. As one of my teachers one said, a good plot is only possible through good characters, and the plot of The Supervillain and Me is truly driven by the wonderful character development done by Banas.

In conclusion, I give The Supervillain and Me four out of five stars for being a funny, cute, entertaining story that’s perfect for the summer time. I highly recommend it to anyone who enjoys super heroes and  cute teen romance stories. 

              

If you would like to order The Supervillain and Me

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Sky in the Deep – Blog Tour and Q&A with Adrienne Young

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Hey guys! I’m so excited to be a part of the blog tour celebrating Adrienne Young’s debut novel, Sky in the Deep! I just want to say a quick thank you to Wednesday Books for letting me be a part of this tour because, as those of you who read my review already know, I absolutely adore this book! Here’s a link to my review in case any of you wanted to read it, and today I’m gonna share a Q&A with the author, Adrienne Young. Be sure to let me know if any of you are excited for Sky in the Deep or if any of you have already read it because I NEED to talk about it with someone!

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SUMMARY:

Sky in the Deep_cover image

OND ELDR. BREATHE FIRE.

Raised to be a warrior, seventeen-year-old Eelyn fights alongside her Aska clansmen in an ancient rivalry against the Riki clan. Her life is brutal but simple: fight and survive. Until the day she sees the impossible on the battlefield—her brother, fighting with the enemy—the brother she watched die five years ago.
Faced with her brother’s betrayal, she must survive the winter in the mountains with the Riki, in a village where every neighbor is an enemy, every battle scar possibly one she delivered. But when the Riki village is raided by a ruthless clan thought to be a legend, Eelyn is even more desperate to get back to her beloved family.

She is given no choice but to trust Fiske, her brother’s friend, who sees her as a threat. They must do the impossible: unite the clans to fight together, or risk being slaughtered one by one. Driven by a love for her clan and her growing love for Fiske, Eelyn must confront her own definition of loyalty and family while daring to put her faith in the people she’s spent her life hating.

 

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General Q&A:

1. What inspired SKY IN THE DEEP? How did the idea and Eelyn come to you? Do you have any favorite Viking stories?

The sibling betrayal was definitely the first inspiration for this story. I was driving in the pouring rain on this country road and that first scene just hit me – Eelyn, seeing her brother on the battlefield after thinking that he was dead for five years. I pulled over on the side of the road and scribbled a million notes on an old envelope. I was immediately hooked to the idea and I wanted to know what had happened. I started writing that first chapter and I just never stopped.

2. What type of research did you do for your characters and world-building? What languages did you study to implement the languages that the Aska and the Riki speak? What was the strangest thing you had to research for this book?

I did a ton of research for this story. I actually really love to research things so it was a lot of fun. A lot of it was stuff like clothing, landscape, weapons, food, etc. But I did a lot of research into Norse mythology as well to build a foundation for this world. The language used is Old Norse, but it’s a dead language so studying it was really difficult. There is a lot of controversy about it among scholars and there’s no real way to fully understand it, so I just did my best based on my own investigation. I’m definitely not an expert! The weirdest thing I had to research was how to tear out someone’s eyeball. Yuck.

3. What was your writing process like for SKY IN THE DEEP?

Complete and utter obsession. When I draft, I get really buried in the world and I don’t really come up for air until I get to the end. I write as much as I can and limit my intake of other influencers that could mess with my mindset. I don’t watch TV or movies or listen to music that’s not on my playlist, and I kind of don’t have a social life until it’s done.

4. What was your hardest scene to write? What was the easiest?

I really didn’t struggle to get this story on the page the way I have with other books so I really don’t know what the hardest scene to write was. But the easiest was the first chapter. I wrote it so fast and it just clicked in so perfectly.

5. Which of your characters are you the most like? Who was your favorite to write?

Eelyn! We have so much in common and she really inspires me. But I think Halvard was the most fun to write. I really, really love him.

6. Do you have a soundtrack for SKY IN THE DEEP? Can you share a couple songs? What would Eelyn’s favorite song be?

Yes! Music plays a HUGE role in my writing process and I have a playlist for every project. The ones I probably listened to the most while drafting SKY are To the Hills by Laurel, Bare by Wildes, and Rise Up – Reprise by Foxes. But a link to the whole playlist is on my site!

7. What books have inspired you to write? What books are you looking forward to reading this year?

The ones that inspired me to write are nothing like my books. One of the most influential ones for me was A Tree Grows in Brooklyn, because the human element is so beautiful and the author explores so many things in that book that really took my breath away. I wanted to write stories that went deep like that, but I love fantasy so I try to it within that realm.

8. Any advice on querying? Or writing advice for aspiring writers?

Querying – do not just sign with any agent who will take you. Make a dream agent list of qualified agents who have good reputations and make consistent sales. Query them. If they don’t bite, then write another book that they might want. Believe me when I say it is worth waiting for the right agent!

9. Any details about the companion novel?

I can’t say anything about the companion novel yet! But I’m hoping that we can start talking about it soon because I am really excited about it!

About the Author

Final_Young, Adrienne_NO CREDIT

Adrienne Young is a born and bred Texan turned California girl. She is a foodie with a deep love of history and travel and a shameless addiction to coffee. When she’s not writing, you can find her on her yoga mat, scouring antique fairs for old books, sipping wine over long dinners, or disappearing into her favorite art museums. She lives with her documentary filmmaker husband and their four little wildlings beneath the West Coast sun.
For information on release, appearances, ARCs, giveaways, and exclusive content, sign up for the newsletter at https://adrienneyoungbooks.com/

Instagram: @adrienneyoungbooks
Twitter: @adriennebooks

 

Sky in the Deep by Adrienne Young releases on April 24th, 2018. If you would like to pre-order Sky in the Deep:

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Snow City – Book Review

Snow City

By G.A. Kathryns

Details:


Title: Snow City


Author: G.A. Kathryns


Publisher: Sycamore Sky Books


Pub. Date: February 7th, 2017



Synopsis:


Her name is Echo Japonica, and she lives in Snow City. But she was not always Echo, and she did not always live in Snow City. Somewhere else, she was someone else, and it was to Snow City that she fled in order to escape a place and a self that had at last become intolerable.

For Snow City is a dream — Echo’s dream — of a better place, an idealized place, a place of both anonymity and fulfillment. It is, for Echo, a haven of peace, a refuge, a sanctuary.
But Snow City remains, nonetheless, a dream, and dreams, being such fragile things, can so easily shade into nightmare…


Disclaimer: I was provided a review copy of Snow City in exchange for my honest review.

 

My Review:  


            Upon reading the summary for Snow City by G.A. Kathryns, I was instantly intrigued. I really love magical realism when it’s done right, like The Night Circus or A Monster Calls, so I went in to Snow City with high expectations. However, it turned out to not be what I was expecting.

            This story is weird, let me get that out of the way right now, and I often found myself unsure as to where the story was going. It wasn’t that the plot was bad–it was just very slow paced. It took me longer to finish this book than normal because I often had to put it down after every chapter or two to take a break before I continued on. Aside from the pacing, I did actually find the plot to be very interesting. Out main character, Echo, creates Snow City to be a sanctuary from the horrible real world. One day she meets this girls, Charity, who actually turns out to be a ghost. Echo doesn’t like the way people treat Charity, so she takes her in, and, in doing so, she starts to notice that the utopia of Snow City isn’t all she thought it was. This book made me constantly question what is real, and that’s something I found I quite enjoyed.

            Kathryns’ poetic, elegant writing style really added to the book as a whole. It was very beautiful, and almost Jane Austen-esq. I found myself reading the story with a very British accent in my head at times. Every description was enchanting, and it really helped to emerge me into the world of Snow City. Although I found the writing style so beautiful, there were some instances where sentences felt as if they were dragged out for the sole purpose of making them poetic, and that just made the point of the sentence get lost in the delivery. Overall, I thought the writing was fantastic, and I’d love to read something in this style again.

            Finally, let’s talk about the characters. It took me a while to warm up the the main character, Echo, but that might’ve had more to do with the pacing rather than the actual characterization. I kind of felt like the author was trying a little too hard to make her come off as odd and quirky, but as the book progressed that feeling went away. I think Charity actually ended up being my favorite character from the novel. Kathryns writes her to be extremely brave and generous, and I love the mother-daughter like bond formed between Charity and Echo. This is a story truly built around the characters.

In conclusion, I give Snow City by G.A. Kathryns three and a half out of five stars. It’s a truly weird, unique book, and that’s something you need to be ok with if you decide to pick it up. I recommend it to fans of magical realism, and I hope that you enjoy it if you decide to read it!

If you would like to purchase Snow City

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Aru Shah and the End of Time – Book Review

Aru Shah and the End of Time

By Roshani Chokshi

Details:


Title: Aru Shah and the End of Time


Author: Roshani Chokshi


Publisher: Rick Riordan Presents


Pub. Date: March 27th, 2018


Synopsis:


Twelve-year-old Aru Shah has a tendency to stretch the truth in order to fit in at school. While her classmates are jetting off to family vacations in exotic locales, she’ll be spending her autumn break at home, in the Museum of Ancient Indian Art and Culture, waiting for her mom to return from her latest archeological trip. Is it any wonder that Aru makes up stories about being royalty, traveling to Paris, and having a chauffeur?

One day, three schoolmates show up at Aru’s doorstep to catch her in a lie. They don’t believe her claim that the museum’s Lamp of Bharata is cursed, and they dare Aru to prove it. Just a quick light, Aru thinks. Then she can get herself out of this mess and never ever fib again.

But lighting the lamp has dire consequences. She unwittingly frees the Sleeper, an ancient demon whose duty it is to awaken the God of Destruction. Her classmates and beloved mother are frozen in time, and it’s up to Aru to save them.

The only way to stop the demon is to find the reincarnations of the five legendary Pandava brothers, protagonists of the Hindu epic poem, the Mahabharata, and journey through the Kingdom of Death. But how is one girl in Spider-Man pajamas supposed to do all that?


Disclaimer: The publisher provided me with ARC of Aru Shah and the End of Time through Netgalley in exchange for my honest review.

 

My Review 

            As a kid, I grew up reading Percy Jackson and the Olympians, The Kane Chronicles, The Hero’s of Olympus, and basically any other Rick Riordan novel available to me. From these books sprang my love for all things mythology, and I’m so, so excited about Rick Riordan Presents so future generations can learn all about different mythologies  through characters they will grow to know and love throughout their life times. Aru Shah and the End of Time by Roshani Chokshi being the first book by Rick Riordan Presents has me very optimistic about the future of this imprint. 

            Before even entering Aru’s world I loved Chokshi’s writing style from her previous novels, and I knew she would do an absolutely fantastic job. Aru Shah is a twelve year old girl who lives with her mother above the Ancient Indian Art and Culture. She has a bad habit of lying, and ends up getting caught in a web of lies by her three class mates. As a result, she lights the Lamp of Bharata, freezing everyone in time, releasing the Sleeper, and setting Aru off on the adventure of a life time. I don’t really want to say too much about the plot in fear of spoling anything, but it was just so much fun to go on the adventure with Aru, Mini, Boo, and everyone else. It was wonderfully paced, and there was never a dull moment. I really learned so much about Hindu mythology through this novel, and it has even inspired me to go out and do some of my own research to learn some more. 

            What I think really made me enjoy this novel was Aru herself. Chokshi gave her such a fantastic voice and a sense of humor that I found very Percy-esq that made this book just so much more enjoyable. There was a moment in the very beginning of the book where Aru made a reference to the song “A Boy Named Sue” by Johnny Cash, and I knew from that moment forward that I absolutely loved her. Overall I think Chokshi did a fantastic job with the novel as a whole, and I can’t wait to see where she goes with the rest of the Pandava Quartet. 

In conclusion, I give Aru Shah and the End of Time four out of five stars for being fun, hilarious, and a great entrance into the Pandava QuartetI highly, highly recommend this for young readers, anyone with any interest in Hindu mythology, and anyone who grew up loving Rick Riordan novels as much as I did.

              

If you would like to order Aru Shah and the End of Time

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Furyborn – ARC Review

Furyborn

By Claire Legrand

Details:


Title: Furyborn


Author: Claire Legrand


Page Count: 512


Publisher: Sourcebooks Fire


Pub. Date: May 22nd, 2018


Synopsis:


When assassins ambush her best friend, the crown prince, Rielle Dardenne risks everything to save him, exposing her ability to perform all seven kinds of elemental magic. The only people who should possess this extraordinary power are a pair of prophesied queens: a queen of light and salvation and a queen of blood and destruction. To prove she is the Sun Queen, Rielle must endure seven trials to test her magic. If she fails, she will be executed…unless the trials kill her first.

A thousand years later, the legend of Queen Rielle is a mere fairy tale to bounty hunter Eliana Ferracora. When the Undying Empire conquered her kingdom, she embraced violence to keep her family alive. Now, she believes herself untouchable–until her mother vanishes without a trace, along with countless other women in their city. To find her, Eliana joins a rebel captain on a dangerous mission and discovers that the evil at the heart of the empire is more terrible than she ever imagined.

As Rielle and Eliana fight in a cosmic war that spans millennia, their stories intersect, and the shocking connections between them ultimately determine the fate of their world–and of each other. (Goodreads Summary)


Disclaimer: The publisher provided me with ARC of Furyborn through Netgalley in exchange for my honest opinion.

My Review 


            I was so sad to see that I had missed receiving an arc of Furyborn in the November ‘Ladies that Slay’ Fairyloot box, but then I was granted an ARC off of Netgalley and all of my sadness was forgotten because I finally had the book in my hands! I didn’t read too much about it before starting because I wanted to be surprised, and I think I have discovered one of my new favorite fantasy novels of all time!

            Legrand does a fantastic job of weaving two stories together in Furyborn–Rielle’s story and Eliana’s story. Though the two take place in different time periods, they are connected in multiple ways which are revealed as the story goes on. Each chapter switches back and forth from Rielle to Eliana, which some people might find annoying, but I was so invested in both story lines that I didn’t mind it at all. It seemed to me, even though the book is over 500 pages, that it is very fast paces and almost every chapter ends on a cliffhanger that leaves you wanting more. There were multiple times throughout Furyborn that I found myself completely caught up in the story, completely oblivious to the outside world. I managed to finish it in one sitting during an 11 hour plane ride, and I could barely notice the crying baby just three rows ahead of me. I thought that the plot itself was brilliant. Rielle is a lady who has grown up in court hiding her powers over pretty much every element from everyone else, until her best friend, the prince, is in danger. After revealing her power, the people are frightened, and she has to prove to them that she is the good queen, the Sun Queen, who has come to help the world. She’s put through a series of trials to prove herself, and in the midst of the difficult physical challenges, she’s going through several things in her personal life–like how to deal with this voice which has appeared in her head and her feelings for the crown prince who just happens to be engaged to one of her other best friends. That’s pretty much all I can say about Rielle’s story without spoiling it. Now, Eliana’s story reminded me somewhat of Celaena/Aelin from the Throne of Glass series. She’s a bounty hunter working for the government, but after her mom gets captured by a mysterious group who’s been kidnapping women and a group of deadly assassins try to recruit her–her life gets turned upside down. Oh, and she also has these powers she can’t explain. I really can’t say too much about her story because then I really would be spoiling it, but I think I liked her story slightly more than Rielle’s because I found it less cliche. 

            Aside from her wonderful storytelling abilities, Legrand also possesses the ability to create an abundance of characters you just can’t help but care for. The two main characters, Rielle and Eliana, are both bad ass women. There’s a constant juxtaposition between the two, and by switching perspectives each chapter, the reader gets to see how they both react to somewhat similar situations. Rielle has been forced to hide her powers her entire life in fear of what might happen to her if someone was to find out, while Eliana is the famed ‘Dread of Orline,’ a famed assassin who’s just trying to survive and keep her loved ones safe. I found myself enjoying both characters for several different reasons, and I enjoyed both of their characters immensely. Aside from the main characters, Legrand includes a plethora of side characters people are sure to love. My personal favorite is Simon, also known as The Wolf, because he is the perfect companion for Eliana, and, I’m not going to lie, they are one of my new favorite ships. In Rielle’s story, she has two best friends, Ludavine and Audric. I adored Ludavine because I could see a lot of my best friend in her, and Audric was so sweet and truly cared for Rielle. Now, let’s talk about the big, bad Corien. I loved him. I thought the way Legrand introduced him as a voice inside Rielle’s head was wonderful, and he definitely gave me some Darkling vibes which was just the cherry on top. I can’t go into too much detail on the characters in fear of spoiling something for y’all, but just know that each and every one of them is fantastic in their own way.


                In conclusion, I give Furyborn by Claire Legrand five out of five stars for being a refreshing, new fantasy novel everyone is sure to love. I already can’t wait to read the second novel, and the first isn’t even out yet! I highly recommend it to anyone who is a fantasy lover, as well as anyone who is looking to get into fantasy. I can’t wait for everyone to read it–I’m bursting at the seams to discuss it with someone! 

If you would like to pre-order Furyborn

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Sky in the Deep – Spoiler Free ARC Review

Sky in the Deep

By Adrienne Young

 

Details:

Title: Sky in the Deep


Author: Adrienne Young


Date of Publication: April 24th, 2018


Publisher: Wednesday Books

 

Thank you so much to the publisher for providing me with an ARC of Sky in the Deep in exchange for my honest feedback.

Summary:

            Seventeen-year-old Eelyn’s world is war. Raised to fight alongside her Aska clansmen in a generations-old blood feud against the Riki, her life is brutal but simple: fight and survive. Until the day she sees the impossible on the battlefield—her brother, fighting with the enemy—the brother she watched die five years ago.
Faced with her brother’s betrayal, she must survive the winter in the mountains with the Riki if she wants to make it back to the fjord after the thaw. But when she begins to see herself in the people she’s been taught to hate, the world Eelyn once knew begins to crumble. And after the village is raided by a ruthless clan many believe to be a myth, Eelyn is given no choice but to trust Fiske, her brother’s friend who has tried more than once to kill her. Together, they must end the blood feud between their clans or watch their people be slaughtered.

A lush, Viking-age inspired fantasy about loyalty, forgiveness, and the definition of family. (Goodreads Summary)

 

My Review 

           As a massive fan of the Vikings TV show as well as the history of the vikings in general, I was looking forward to Sky in the Deep from the moment I read its description on Goodreads, and I did not leave this book disappointed. I managed to finish it in one sitting, and am already dying to get my hands on Young’s next novel.

            I don’t often get to read YA historical fiction/fantasy stories, so I jumped at the chance to get my hands on Sky in the Deep.  Young manages to build a lush, wonderful world while following what we know of the vikings from history. The story itself had me hooked in from the very first moment with an epic battle scene to start the story off. While reading it, each chapter seems to flow into the next, leaving you wanting more until you reach the very end. It’s both brutal and violent, while also managing to be a touching story about family and loyalty. I especially love the description Young includes in her fighting scenes; she never holds anything back and allows for there to be blood and gore. I don’t want to say too much about the plot in fear of spoiling it, but Young does a fantastic job in pacing her story so it doesn’t feel rushed, letting things occur naturally. Sky in the Deep is truly an incredible Viking inspired story that will not only make your pulse race with adrenaline, but also cause you to appreciate those you have in your life.

            A badass story has to have some badass characters, and Young certainly delivers in that category. Our main character, Eelyn, is a piece of work and I absolutely love her. She is a fierce warrior who loves ferociously, and will do anything to protect those she loves. I loved how we got to see her develop throughout the story from an Aska who hates the Riki with every fiber of her being, to living and fighting amongst them. Fiske, her love interest, is the strong, silent type. He and Eelyn don’t start off on the right foot, but we see them grow together, bringing out the best in one another. Young did a fantastic job in not letting the romance take over the story. Instead, the romance sneaks up on you when you least expect it, and actually adds to the story as a whole. Aside from the two main characters, there are also several other well written characters with tons of personality such as Inge, Halvard, Runa, Iri, Myra, and so many more! I can’t discuss everything I loved about every single one of them without spoiling things–or making this review about five thousand pages long–but I feel I need to mention how Young doesn’t skip out on the character development of any of the side characters as well. I’ve truly finished this book with several new favorite characters who will stay with me for years to come.

                In conclusion, I give Sky in the Deep by Adrienne Young four and a half out of five stars for being an exciting, action packed piece of YA historical fiction, and I highly recommend it to anyone looking for a new book to read–but especially to anyone who enjoys the history of the vikings. I can’t wait to see what else Adrienne Young comes out with in the future.

If you would like to purchase Sky in the Deep

Book Depository

Barnes and Nobles

Amazon

-CG