A Court of Wings and Ruin by Sarah J. Maas | Book Review

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Looming war threatens all Feyre holds dear in the third volume of the #1 New York Times bestselling A Court of Thorns and Roses series.

Feyre has returned to the Spring Court, determined to gather information on Tamlin’s maneuverings and the invading king threatening to bring Prythian to its knees. But to do so she must play a deadly game of deceit-and one slip may spell doom not only for Feyre, but for her world as well.

As war bears down upon them all, Feyre must decide who to trust amongst the dazzling and lethal High Lords-and hunt for allies in unexpected places.

In this thrilling third book in the #1 New York Times bestselling series from Sarah J. Maas, the earth will be painted red as mighty armies grapple for power over the one thing that could destroy them all.

Publisher: Bloomsbury

Date Published: May 2, 2017

Date Read: May 15, 2017

Genre: Fantasy, Romance

Pages: 699

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This book will seriously give you the worst book hangover in the history of all book hangovers. The moment I’ve put it down I immediately wanted to reread the whole series. I’m gonna miss everyone, I’m gonna miss the adventure, the banters, the magical world, the romance, the heart-stopping scenes, the way I held my breath. Oh Cauldron, I will miss every bit of this series. Especially Cassian.

So I would have to apologize in advance if this review will come out incoherent. I just couldn’t fully grasp what went down with the final book of Rhysand and Feyre’s story, but I am happy that there would be three novels set in this world, more of Cassian please.

Also because I was dilly-dallying in writing this review, (seriously Eunice, it has been two weeks, what is wrong with you?) I’ve perused Tumblr, oh yes that magical world where everything is so beautiful but also is a dark place full of spoilers so be warned. So as I was wasting my precious time there, I stumbled upon a post where it says “A Court of Thorns and Roses is the longest prologue since everything starts at A Court of Mist and Fury” and I couldn’t help but agree 100% haha. You have to give it to Sarah J. Maas to turn a prologue into a full blown book, haha but seriously though, that is the most real short description of this series I came across with. This series had me hooked like crazy, and it has been a long time since that happened and for that I am eternally grateful.

I mentioned in my review of A Court of Mist and Fury  that I could not even begin to fathom what would book three be like since ACOMAF totally outdid A Court of Thorns and Roses  and now book three – A Court of Wings and Ruin. And boy did I like it? I LOVE IT! It was way better than ACOMAF. Some may disagree with me since most of the people I know really loved ACOMAF more than ACOWAR, but I tell you ACOWAR totally did a great job concluding the story of Rhysand and Feyre. There were loose ends, yes, but it’s more of about the other characters which I am positive will be given answers to in the next three books to come. So fret not, we will all get the answers and elaborate stories we need to tie everything up into a nice satin black ribbon. Let’s cross all our damn fingers for that.

A Court of Wings and Ruin is very plot driven, so much so that I had hard time processing all the vital information coming my way. I had to take mental notes on who’s who and what happened to this and that and all that crazy back pedaling on what transpired from the first two books that correlated with what was happening with book three. This is what I get for not re-reading ACOTAR and ACOMAF, but seriously ain’t nobody got time for that. So I relied mostly on my review of the the first two books, read summaries online (which did little help to be honest), and asked friends to refresh my memory, hello Cath of To All The Books I’ve Read Before. And so I dived in. At first I was confused as hell, happens to the best of us I suppose, but here’s what I commend about ACOWAR – it was able to guide the reader into easing their way in to the book. What I’m trying to say is, it was helping out the readers to fully remember what had happened in the previous books while injecting new information in a smooth and flawless manner. It’s like you just picked up where you left off.

I cannot say much about what went down with this one since I don’t want to spoil anyone. But what I can say is kudos to SJM for writing about characters of color and painting them in the best light possible and for injecting LGBTQ theme, my heart is happy. See this guys, authors actually listen to their readers. Authors learn too. This is such a beautiful thing and I hope this continues on. So now back to the story, ACOWAR had those heart-stopping scenes, and I wish I could name a few of my favorites but again that would be spoiling you guys. But note this, Cassian and Azriel, both are more bad-ass than ever! Like seriously I could marry Cassian right now. This book was complex yet very easy to follow, if that even makes sense. There were intricacies but also they were presented in a digestible manner. Not too overwhelming and not lackluster either, it was just right and perfect. There are parts that I savored longer than necessary and there are parts that broke my heart. It was a perfect mixture of everything exciting and heartbreaking yet you wouldn’t have it any other way. Can we get the next three books now? Nope? Please release us of this agony.

The characters were also distinct from one another. You will definitely love how they have developed. We have Nesta (whom I was annoyed most of the time) who was feisty and snob haha, we have Elain whom I feared was crazy but also proved to be an important character towards the end. Also let’s not ignore the #NightCourtSquad, starting off with Cassian, my love, ahhhh Cassian is so swoon-worthy! Im pretty positive Im gonna name my kid after him. That’s how obsessed I was with his character. He took bad-assery to whole new level. Azriel on the other hand is also quite the character. Azriel and Mor’s story is just, I can’t form a coherent sentence, they make my heart hurt but also made me understand. God I wish I could say why, but again that would be a spoiler. Also Amren! Amren is also such a kick-ass character. I loved her participation towards the end, I swear every character in this book played a crucial role in the development of the story. Then of course we have Feyre, our cursebreaker, our High Lady of the Night Court. I know I made mention that I was annoyed by her character in ACOMAF, well in ACOWAR that seemed to change. Well she still isn’t a favorite but her character here is so clever and cunning that I have no choice but to like her. There certainly was a shift in her character in ACOWAR. It was more put-together. Then we have Rhysand, while he isn’t also a favorite but I don’t hate his character. I have hated him in ACOTAR but then loved him in ACOMAF, and in ACOWAR he was just all things amazing. What I specifically love about Rhysand’s character was he was always giving Feyre the choice, always putting her decision and want first more than anything. I love that he wasn’t pushy or controlling *ahem Tamlin*, but he was just so good Feyre doesn’t deserve him haha. Rhysand was selfless and a true leader, add the fact that he wouldn’t let anything bad happen to Feyre but at the same time always giving Feyre the opportunity to do things on her own or her way – which was nice for a change. And this doesn’t make him any less manly. Sarah J. Maas made sure to point this out in this book, stressed it even, that Rhysand and Feyre are equal. So yass Feminism right there! I loved that Feyre wasn’t portrayed to be a weak damsel in distress, she actually had balls! So kudos to that! I would also like to take the opportunity to tell you guys that you shouldn’t go on hating Tamlin okay, his character was unbearable most of the time but I swear he has a redeeming quality, so watch out for it! Of course I won’t forget Lucien, I remember saying in my review of ACOTAR that I am #TeamLucien but then that changed in ACOMAF, now in ACOWAR let’s just say I wanted more of him but his character fell short. I would love to know more about his back story. God so many things to watch out for.

Can I also mention that I was too afraid about possible deaths here? The anticipation of it killed me, especially during the crucial parts of the war. All I was murmuring was “Kill everyone else, just not my Cassian please.” And why can’t they fucking leave Cassian’s wings alone! I was furious.

This incoherent review has gone on for too long, I’m going to end your suffering now. All I can say is this book was worth losing sleep over! So yes read it!!!

 

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“Night Triumphant- and the Stars Eternal.”
Sarah J. Maas, A Court of Wings and Ruin

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The Willoughby Book Club

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The Willoughby Book Club was founded by Adam & Chloe Pollard in 2012 in the small, south Leicestershire village of Willoughby Waterleys. Today, the growing team send books to thousands of subscribers in almost 40 countries across the world. The Willoughby Book Club is an award-winning, independent business. They pride themselves on offering a personalized, unique and memorable book subscription box service.

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Of course they have Classics! Seriously what more can you possibly ask for?

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One True Loves by Taylor Jenkins Reid | Book Review

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From the author of Maybe in Another Life—named a People Magazine pick and a “Best Book of the Summer” by Glamour and USA Today—comes a breathtaking new love story about a woman unexpectedly forced to choose between the husband she has long thought dead and the fiancé who has finally brought her back to life.

In her twenties, Emma Blair marries her high school sweetheart, Jesse. They build a life for themselves, far away from the expectations of their parents and the people of their hometown in Massachusetts. They travel the world together, living life to the fullest and seizing every opportunity for adventure.

On their first wedding anniversary, Jesse is on a helicopter over the Pacific when it goes missing. Just like that, Jesse is gone forever.

Emma quits her job and moves home in an effort to put her life back together. Years later, now in her thirties, Emma runs into an old friend, Sam, and finds herself falling in love again. When Emma and Sam get engaged, it feels like Emma’s second chance at happiness.

That is, until Jesse is found. He’s alive, and he’s been trying all these years to come home to her. With a husband and a fiancé, Emma has to now figure out who she is and what she wants, while trying to protect the ones she loves.

Who is her one true love? What does it mean to love truly?

Emma knows she has to listen to her heart. She’s just not sure what it’s saying.

Publisher: Washington Square Press

Date of Publication: June 7, 2016

Date Read: May 19, 2017

No. of Pages: 327

Setting: Massachusetts | California

Genre: Adult Fiction, Romance, Contemporary

Get Your Copy Here: Book Depository | Amazon

 

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“There are all kinds of love in this world, but never the same love twice.” – F. Scott Fitzgerald

This quote from F. Scott Fitzgerald is One True Loves in a nutshell. I honestly don’t know where I am drawing my strength from. This book had my heart shattered in its rawest form. I feel like a huge part of me is still grieving. I kid you not. I feel like crying every.damn.time I think about it. I had to compose my self every hour or so. But a review has to be made, has to be shared, so here I am trying my best to relive everything, but boy is it hard. One True Loves is the second book I’ve read by Taylor Jenkins Reid. The first one being Maybe In Another Life, you can check my review of it here.  I don’t know why it took me almost a year to pick up another Taylor Jenkins Reid book. Had I known that it would be this good, I would have read it sooner. (Take this as a public service announcement, if you are second guessing if you should read this book or not, do yourself a favor and read it already. Yep, you’re welcome.)

Well, for starters, DON’T READ THE BLURB or do, it’s up to you. This book is best enjoyed if you have the littlest of idea of what’s about to go down. I don’t know why they had to write the blurb like that. (NOTE TO PUBLISHERS don’t give away major details). It may or may not have given away the whole story, but it depends on how you look at it. In my case, I didn’t read the blurb until I was half way through the book – if you already know me by now I seldom read blurbs. I only know small details and take it from there. I always crave the element of surprise. So yes, take my word for it and DON’T READ THE BLURB or at least skim it if you can’t help it. Don’t worry there is so much more in the story that the blurb wasn’t able to ruin, so just read on.

“I am finishing up dinner with my family and my fiancé when my husband calls.”

Note that first sentence, if you’re not in for some emotional ride then I don’t know anymore. That first sentence is enough to send my brain haywire.

One True Loves will bring you immense pain yet come out of it with a profound understanding of what true love really is. It is complicated, yes, but at the same time it was as real as it could get. There was no sugar-coating it, there was no cushioning the blow, there was no beating around the bush, it presented everything in its rawest glory, its ugly head rearing in the surface. Isn’t that how life really is, it was never perfect, and this book made it a point to tell a story that would encompass everything about love and loss – and yes it isn’t always rainbows and butterflies, it had ugly parts too. And did I mention I cried buckets? It was literally river of tears, my tear glands have been working like crazy and I can’t seem to pacify myself, I had to pause once in awhile because I feel that gnawing ache in my chest – yep much like feeling of a true blue breakup. I didn’t know how I was able to survive it, but I tell you it was hard, it was a struggle. Not because the book was bad, but because the book was so heartbreakingly beautiful you have to risk your heart to be completely cut open. And you’d be a willing victim.

The characters were painted in a realistic way, they were flawed much like any other human, and that’s what drew me in. TJR didn’t make her characters to be likable, she wrote them to represent real humans with real struggles. Emma for an instance, her character was a very conflicted one but you’d understand where she was coming from. You would get why she acted the way she did, you would get why she made such and such decision. It was simple yet complicated altogether, something you cannot quite explain fully but you get her. And Jesse, after all that he’s been through. You feel for him too. You understand what he was demanding, he saw it in black and white, it is this or that. Then we have Sam, oh boy, Sam. Majority of the book I cried for him. He was everything good and then some. God how selfless he was! I want to hug him! You’ll end up as conflicted as Emma when it comes to choosing between Sam and Jesse. Both are good men! And though I already knew who she’ll end up with because of the subtle hints in the beginning, I still wanted to stick around to see how the author would play out the characters, how everything will come about. And when it did, I was left awestruck and basically broken. I had to compose myself every now and then. It was hard to read through the exchange between the characters. It is as if you feel the pain emanating from them, it is as if the collective pain they are feeling are now induced inside of you. I was inconsolable to say the least.  I also love how Emma and Marie’s relationship grew, I loved that part when Marie explained things to Emma (but I can’t say it because that would be a spoiler). Just ugh, please read this book!

You have to give it to TJR for writing an unrealistic story and making it something that hits home. It may have been too unrealistic but the essence of it is still there, the wisdom and all that realization will hit you without preamble. It is as if Taylor Jenkins Reid had a one on one sit down encounter with you to tell you how things are, how they truly are. Again without sugar-coating or over-analyzing stuff, that it is what it is and you have to accept it even if you don’t want to at first. I love that in a book, it is as if it offers you a brand new perspective towards the real world, and yet it is just there waiting for you to finally acknowledge it, it may have come under different circumstance but the result is all the same. You just have to slightly veer away from what you believe in and take what is offered in front of you. Reading this book is heartbreaking yet it was satisfying. And I don’t know how much more I could give it justice, but all I know is you have to read this even once in your life. And oh this is the first book since a very long while that I’ve finished in a day! So if that doesn’t spell how invested I was then I don’t know what would.

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“Don’t think that true love means your only love.

I think true love means loving truly.

Loving purely. Loving wholly.

Maybe, if you’re the kind of person who’s willing to give all of yourself, the kind of person who is willing to love with all of your heart even though you’ve experienced just how much it can hurt . . . maybe you get lots of true loves, then. Maybe that’s the gift you get for being brave.”
Taylor Jenkins Reid, One True Loves

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Dead Men Naked by Dario Cannizzaro Out Now!

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I was ecstatic to learn that Dario Cannizzaro released his very first novel. Back in October of 2016 I had the pleasure of reading his collection of short stories – Of Life, Death, Aliens and Zombies which I enjoyed a lot! Dario has that talent not many are blessed with. He has this way with words that are on point yet profound. His stories are a mixture of funny, relevant, thought provoking and charming at best. It was everything good rolled into one. Thus I am very pleased to share to the world about his first novel – DEAD MEN NAKED. This book came out last May 7th!

Dead Men Naked  is Dario’s debut novel. Narrated with the characteristic prose that differentiates Dario’s work – minimalistic at its core, but with incredibly powerful and lyrical flights of fancy – this modern and magical tale uses a touch of humor, philosophy, and poetry, to explore what it takes to accept our own mortality.

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After the sudden death of his best friend Neil, involving a 6-foot giant crow and quite some Tequila, Lou’s life takes an unexpected turn toward the impossible.

As Lou discovers his unwelcome gift to see Neil’s ghost, he starts to question his sanity; but the real challenge is just coming up.

Mallory, a self-proclaimed medium, offers her services to help Neil pass over. Drunk on spirit, lust, and hope, Lou agrees to perform a ritual, which, unforeseen, leaves him alone to face death.

Not any death, but his personal one; a skinny, sarcastic anthropomorphic embodiment of his end-of-time which – who? – goes by D.

Summoned during the ritual, D will help Lou in the search for Angelene, Mallory’s twin sister, the only clue to finding the disappeared Mallory and reverse the ritual.
The strange duo begins a road trip from dusty interstates to lousy strip clubs, during which they’ll have time to know each other and discuss the meaning of life, love, and what does it means to be mortal.

Will our unconventional couple find Angelene, and persuade her to help in the search for Mal? Will Lou be able to save his friend Neil, or his own soul for that matter?

But more importantly: will he make peace with his own Death?

You can get a copy of his book:

Amazon

http://www.dariowrites.com/books/dmn/

 

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

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DARIO CANNIZZARO

Was born in the sun-eaten Naples, Italy in 1982. He moved to Ireland in 2011, and has called it home ever since.

Since this biography is written by himself, which is me, I’ll switch to the first person and won’t bother you with more details you don’t really care about.

Hi. I’m Dario. Thanks for reading this.

Indie authors don’t get the same love as their mainstream counterparts. I know what you think. You see the pictures of people like JK Rowling, King, Ellis, and then our pictures. The indie author. With a photo that’s either too professional – look at me! I’m a pro! – or just a terrible smartphone pic. I assure you, we’re not all ugly and pimply, and not all of us have horrible looking covers.

Also, some of us actually care about putting out the best possible product. After all, it’s my name on the cover. I don’t want you to associate my name with terrible writing.

And honestly, I believe I write good stuff. You should give it a try. I do write quirky stories, with very normal characters thrown in implausible situations. It’s a bit surreal but very real at the same time, I guess. You can buy one of my books – it’ll cost you less than a beer – or you can head over to some literary magazines that published my stories, such as The Galway Review, Trigger Warning, Two Thousand Words and Chantwood Magazine.

But if it’s the first time you’re getting to know me, well, you can start anywhere. Some people loved the short novella Impurità a lot (and I get why, it has some serious Murakami vibes), while some others liked Summer’s end or Bathroom Love for their Fante-sque setting and style. So if you’re still on the fence, go for the short story collection Of Life, Death, Aliens and Zombies and you’ll know.

I also just published my first novel, Dead Men Naked , which is a modern tale, and uses a touch of humor, philosophy, and poetry, to explore what it takes to accept our own mortality. Boy, what a thing to write – a novel that is. It sucks up most of your life and people will talk to you and you will stare blankly in their eyes – or just behind them, ever so slightly – and they’ll ask you What are you thinking about? and you’ll simply reply Nothing, but in reality, you’re thinking about everything that’s happening to the main character of your novel. In Dead Men Naked, he has to witness his best friend’s death – in very very improbable circumstances, which will bring him to hang out with the anthropomorphic embodiment of the Grim Reaper itself. It’s dark but funny and full of poetry.

Anyhow. That’s my version of a biography – I figured, since very few people will read it, let’s give them something. If you want to know a bit more about me – I love literature of course, Saramago, McCarthy, Dick. Geniuses. I love music – I sing and play guitar – and comic books. And I do love technology plenty, and actually have a day job in tech, and maybe one day will write a SciFi novel, which is very hard for me because I love SciFi.

Thanks for stopping by. I hope you’ll like my stuff!

ciao,

Dario.

_

Check out his site here.

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The Difference Between Us by Rachel Higginson | Cover Reveal and Pre-order

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Ahhhh who’s excited to know more about Ezra and Molly’s story? I know I am! Here’s the cover of The Difference Between Us, it is the second book in the Opposite Attract series. Check out my review of the first book in the series – The Opposite of You.  

The Difference Between Us comes out July 25, 2017! I can’t wait to know their story. I loved Killian and Vera from The Opposite of You and I am pretty sure I will love Ezra and Molly just the same if not more. I will leave the blurb for you guys!

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I’m cursed.

At least when it comes to finding Mr. Right.

I’m tired of men that only want one night stands or blind dates that are nothing but awkward and uncomfortable. I’m tired of avoiding inappropriate text messages and the constant disappointment of always meeting Mr. Wrong.

After all these years of dates that lead nowhere, I can admit that it’s me. I’m the problem. I’m shy and picky and cursed. Definitely cursed.

So I’ve decided two things.

The first? I’m giving up dating and relationships and men in general. Maybe, possibly, forever.

The second? I’m going to have to try harder to avoid Ezra Baptiste.

If I couldn’t hack it in the kiddy pool of dating, I certainly can’t swim in his deep end. He’s too successful. Too intense. He’s all man when I’m used to nothing but boys pretending to be grownups. He’s everything I’m afraid to want and so far out of my league we might as well be different species entirely.

So he’ll need to find a different artist to paint his mural. And a different graphic designer to help him with his website. He’ll need to find someone else to glare at and flirt with and kiss.

It can’t be me.

We’re too different.

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You can preorder here:

 

About the Author:

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Rachel Higginson is the best-selling author of The Five Stages of Falling in Love, Every Wrong Reason, Bet on Us and The Star-Crossed Series.

She was born and raised in Nebraska, and spent her college years traveling the world. She fell in love with Eastern Europe, Paris, Indian Food and the beautiful beaches of Sri Lanka, but came back home to marry her high school sweetheart. Now she spends her days writing stories and raising five amazing kids.

Twitter: mywritesdntbite

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