[ARC] The Thing About Alice by Jean-Luke Swanepoel

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3stars

Title: Aurora Burning
Author: Amie Kaufman & Jay Kristoff
Release date: May 5th 2020
Number of pages: 512 (kindle edition)
Good things about this book: I think it conveys the hardness and hopefulness of life pretty well!
Bad things about this book: It’s very peculiar and I don’t think I understand it.
Do I recommend it? Yes.
Rate: 3/5

Read the summary and add this book on Goodreads: here

*ARC from NetGalley*

I don’t think I understood what the book wanted to tell me. The writing was a bit hard to follow but I synchronised with it. Then the time jumps started and I got confused. I didn’t understand what was going on, who was who. And the last chapter is where the book lost me.

The story follows Alice, an old woman living with her husband, who knows everything about everyone and feels abandoned when her friends and neighbours start moving on and away. Each chapter focuses on a character important to Alice: it’s often raw, intense, you can’t catch a break, it’s rushed, things happen without you noticing.

I don’t know if I was supposed to feel like Alice, lost and having reality getting away from me, or it was just me who didn’t get what all of this was about. Nonetheless it was a very peculiar novella, one that left me wanting for so many information I didn’t get but wanted to know. I wasn’t expecting what I got, but the book has something that can’t be denied; life, crude life, with all it throws your way.

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[ARC] Aurora Burning by Amie Kaufman & Jay Kristoff

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4stars

Title: Aurora Burning
Author: Amie Kaufman & Jay Kristoff
Series: The Aurora Cycle #2
Release date: May 5th 2020
Number of pages: 512 (kindle edition)
Good things about this book: Kal!
Bad things about this book: A trope I really hate.
Do I recommend it? Yes.
Rate: 4/5

Read the summary and add this book on Goodreads: here

*ARC from NetGalley*

I have words, and I have feelings, and I have anger. Yes, all three. And while I know this is typical behavior in Kristoff/Kaufman books, I’m still in this position nonetheless. I never learn, right? The writing as usual is full of sass, lots of banter, jokes, innuendos, and while it might seem too much sometimes, it gives the story the lightness it needs to balance the harder parts.

It’s a 99% action packed book, with only a few chapters of a sort of calm for both the readers and the poor characters. They can’t catch a break, and neither can we. Every chapter, with the different POVs is full of fights, blood, secrets, and mysteries.

I loved seeing and learning more about Kal, who is definitely my favorite character of the whole series. He is just the sweetest and it pained me being uncertain about things that have happened and are happening to him and his new friends. The story about his past was heartbreaking and I just wanted to hug him and make him better.

Not all characters were given the same space to allow us to get to know them better (I want more Fin in the next book, please), but the ones that we did get to know more of (Zila) gave the way they interact and grew from the previous book a brand new meaning. I love seeing characters grow into their better selves. It’s refreshing.

One thing I absolutely didn’t like was the use of one particular trope. Every time I see that trope used, my blood boils, and I get so furious! Without spoiling the trope is this one: blaming the children for the sins and crimes of their relatives. And everyone forgetting all the good things of a person because of that, like all their experiences are automatically fake, and now all they feel is hate, everything else cancelled. I really didn’t like that part and I’m still fuming because of it.

That’s why I’m not giving the 5 stars I initially wanted to give it. It’s my subjective opinion because I personally don’t like it, it’s unnecessary and the response of the other characters just ridiculous.

But the book has a lot of fulfilled potential and I can’t wait to have the next book in my hands because I need to know! That ending! They sure know how to leave the readers hanging.

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Starsight by Brandon Sanderson

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5stars

Title: Starsight
Author: Brandon Sanderson
Series: Skyward #2
Number of pages: 461 (paperback edition)
Good things about this book: So many things happened and it was hard to put down.
Bad things about this book: Nothing comes to mind.
Do I recommend it? Yes.
Rate: 5/5

Read the summary and add this book on Goodreads: here

Where do I start? Where can I start? So many things happened in this book. Many new characters were introduced. I didn’t read the description before starting it so I didn’t know what to expect, and wow, my mind would never have expected what went down here.

Spensa is undercover at Starsight. We meet different kind of aliens, what goes through their minds, and exactly what the space alien politicians has been saying to everyone who would listen just how dangerous the humans are. Things got complicated easily. Spensa was very in over her head, but we can’t help but cheer for her, right?

She’s far less reckless than she was in the first book, thank goodness. I didn’t like much her attitude in Skyward. Rebel just for the sake of it. Here we have a Spensa who wants to save her people, putting herself at risk in a very suicidal mission. The things she finds out will either help her or doomed all of them. I’m very scared about what’s going to happen in the third book. But I need it right now!

The new characters!! I liked them! The kitsen, so cute and tiny and no, they don’t have a King, even if they serve this little poet Lord Hesho who sits on a throne and likes to give super long names to his ships. But nope, no monarchy here. So cute! Morriumur, an experiment being, a draft, half blue and half red, each part a parent. I can’t even begin to explain them to you so I won’t. Vapor, a figment, a scent in the air. Like wth? I need to know more! Brade, the brainwashed human. I hated her from the beginning. Cuna, the blue dione with the creepy smile. And Wiznik, the krell. All of them different and important to the story. I was a bit sad we only got a few chapters from Jorgen’s pov, but I love where the story is going.

I liked how the story went from months after the ending of Skyward, to Spensa going far away from home to Starsight, to her learning more about the enemies they all share, to understanding why the humans are hated so much, to seeing who the real enemies are. It’s hard not to be immerse in the story. Spensa is very charismatic and M-Bot is as usual hilarious, even with all that happens in this book. I can’t wait to know more. I need more!

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[ARC] Eat, Gay, Love: A Memoir by Calum McSwiggan

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5stars

Title: Eat, Gay, Love: A Memoir
Author: Calum McSwiggan
Release date: July 9th 2020
Number of pages: 304 (kindle edition)
Good things about this book: Very entertaining, my very first memoir.
Bad things about this book: Nothing.
Do I recommend it? Yes.
Rate: 5/5

Read the summary and add this book on Goodreads: here

*ARC from NetGalley*

I’m so very happy I lost my nonfiction virginity with this book, this memoir. It was emotional, funny, important and full of hope. From the very first pages you know you’re in for a very wild and queer ride. I’ve never read a memoir so I really didn’t know what to expect. I got a story of a young man trying to find himself in the world while traveling. He knows he’s privileged to be able to just leave everything behind after a break up, and just travel, working a bit, but mostly just experiencing all kinds of lives.

What I love the most is how each LGBT member of the community just kind of attracts the other. Wherever Calum went, he found someone dealing with coming out, finding out they may not be straight, being in a relationship, closeted because of their countries’ laws, lovely drag queen, and many more. It was like a videogame in which the character needs to complete certain tasks in certain places and he’ll be given advice or he’ll learn something new and important from the experience to just keep going forward.

At first I envied Calum so much, going around the world, meeting interesting people, gaining adventure points and stories he could tell others. I wish I did just that. Then little by little I realized he was also very lost, like many others, lonely even, in need of guidance. Aren’t we all? It hit hard, close to home. He also experienced something really bad and also something pretty scary, and I was so heartbroken.

I liked how Calum pointed out every single flaw in each countries’ system towards LGBT+ people. He talked openly with the locals and got insights he would never could have gotten otherwise. Even where you think all is very openminded, there’s something hidden. Huge steps forwards have been made, a few backwards, but the path is till very long and in need of everyone’s voices to be truly equal. I loved how he pointed out everything he learned during his travels. How much there’s still to achieve.

How awesome is to be bitten by a baby tiger during your first day of work? I truly liked this memoir. It’s both fun and sad, light and heavy, makes you feel lonely among people you know, but also widely accepted among strangers. It gives you a beautiful sense of community, even among people who barely know each other.

Highly recommended. To both nonfiction fans and not.

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[ARC] Shorefall by Robert Jackson Bennett

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5stars

Title: Shorefall
Author: Robert Jackson Bennett
Series: The Founders Trilogy #2
Release date: April 21st 2020
Number of pages: 400 (kindle edition)
Good things about this book: Full of action and twists and mysteries.
Bad things about this book: I want the last book right now.
Do I recommend it? Yes.
Rate: 5/5

Read the summary and add this book on Goodreads: here

*ARC from NetGalley*

Action packed rollercoaster from beginning to end. I don’t even know what to say, where to begin without giving anything away. Because everything, in every single chapter, is essential for the story, everything is part of something bigger. I love how all is connected and we’re given clues little by little, clues we don’t notice right away until it’s too late.

Old characters and new characters, a new very interesting baddie, new mysteries, flashbacks, heists, surprises around every corner: a wholesome plot in full Robert Jackson Bennett style. As complex as it is and sometimes a bit hard to follow, I love the magic system; both that and the world building are so detailed and mind-blowing.

The way the story was written, the plot unfolding, is just as I’m used from this author, and it never ceases to amaze me. There are so many details you can almost see the whole city of Tevanne if you close your eyes. And I think it’s refreshing how, even if the romance is not the main theme, the main love story is never questioned, it flows naturally and without drama. It seems the whole Founders world is a world where you can love whoever you like, and I think this gives the story more points in my eyes.

The next and last book can’t come soon enough. I need to know how the story is going to end. Every time one of this books gets to the last pages, I know my patience is going to be tested!

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[ARC] Starcrossed by Allie Therin

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5stars

Title: Starcrossed
Author: Allie Therin
Series: Magic in Manhattan #2
Release date: May 18th 2020
Number of pages: 282 (kindle edition)
Good things about this book: It was just as great as the first.
Bad things about this book: Nothing.
Do I recommend it? Yes.
Rate: 5/5

Read the summary and add this book on Goodreads: here

*ARC from NetGalley*

This was just a delight. So much cuteness, action, FEELINGS; all in the same amazing magical world I came to love. Arthur and Rory as still as adorable as in the first book. The slow burn from the first book, turned into a soft jealousy and coming to terms to what exactly their relationship means. What they are willing to do to make it work.

The relics mystery is super interesting, and the figure of the Baron as the bad guy is terrifying and he still hasn’t showed his face. He better stay the hell away from my boys because they need to have at least some time for themselves without all the kidnappings and torture.

The writing is still excellent and the magic system is phenomenal. Hyde? Wow! The characters and side characters are all very detailed. Arthur and his nightmares, my heart hurt. Rory being his temperamental self as usual, but understanding he needs to open up a bit and accept what the world is trying to give him, in the form of Arthur and his magnificent non-magical self!

The story, the characters, the magic. I loved it all!

I can’t wait for the next book in 2021!

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Theft of Swords by Michael J. Sullivan

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5stars

“Aren’t you going to say, I told you so?” Hadrian whispered.
“What would be the point in that?”
“Oh, so you’re saying that you’re going to hang on to this and throw it at me at some future, more personally beneficial moment?”
“I don’t see the point in wasting it now, do you?”

Title: Theft of Swords
Author: Michael J. Sullivan
Series: The Riyria Revelations #1-2
Release date: May 7th 2020
Number of pages: 649 (kindle edition)
Good things about this book: Action packed and hard to put down.
Bad things about this book: Nothing comes to mind.
Do I recommend it? Yes.
Rate: 5/5

Read the summary and add this book on Goodreads: here

It’s been a long long time since I last read a high fantasy book non focused on romance. It was refreshing and I didn’t know I needed it. At the beginning it surprised me that not all the chapters were from Hadrian and Royce pov, but I get how it gives us more perspective into the whole story. It’s complex, I don’t think I fully understand the mechanics of who’s who, the royals, imperialists, nationalists, dwarfs, elves, etc. I also think I’m mispronouncing all the names. But oh well, I enjoyed myself a lot reading it and I ordered right away volume two.

I went to Tumblr looking for fanarts and I think I stumbled onto a spoiler. It wasn’t really unexpected, and I looked away immediately so I don’t think I read it well, but if it’s the truth I think it wouldn’t have been something that my not Sherlock level mind would have missed. We’ll see how things go and if it’s really true what my spoiler magnet eyes saw on the hellish website.

I love love love Hadrian and Royce. The tall and the tiny, the ray of sunshine and the grumpy cinnamon roll. I knew I was going to love them from the very first chapter. How could I not? Now I know even more about them and I love them more. If that awful guy and the guy guy do something to harm my babies I will be furious!

I hope we’ll see more of the side characters of both book 1 and 2 in the next volume. Myrion was a delight. I want to see more of him and his love for horses! I’m not one to binge read a series, but if the shipping gods will give me the sequel soon, I’ll read it when I open the package!

Did I mention anything useful in this review? No, I didn’t! Why? I went in blindly, I didn’t know a thing about this book but the main characters’ name and I think that needs to be enough to enjoy the book fully.

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