Black Wings Beating by Alex London

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4stars

Title: Black Wings Beating
Author: Alex London
Series: Skybound #1
Number of pages: 432 (hardcover edition)
Good things about this book: The world building is promising and I love all the birds.
Bad things about this book: The characters don’t always use logic and reason and are immature.
Do I recommend it? Yes, of course, it has plenty of potential.
Rate: 4-/5

Read the summary and add this book on Goodreads: here

It was going to be a solid 3-star read but then Jowyn came along and it became 4. It felt a bit underwhelming, but by the end the potential started showing. Next book will be better, I just know it!!!

While there were some parts that left me dumbfounded, there were others that had a lot of potential and let me see how this story will continue. Brysen is a teenager boy who thinks he’s in love and that makes him dumb. He is kind of annoying, but you just love him and want him to succeed in whatever he decides to do. The “boyfriend” was everything but sweet to him; I didn’t like him from the start, there was no chemistry and I felt something was off!

On the other hand, Kylee is just plain annoying in my eyes. She knows how her brother feels, what he sustained during his whole childhood, yet she persists into making him feel like he can’t do anything by himself. Maybe it’s true and he needs help, but there are so many ways to show him you’re there for him, and Kylee’s way is just not the right way. I hope her character grows; I want to like her.

The world building is amazing, and I liked a lot the writing. I have more Alex London books that sound great and super interesting and I’ll be reading them as soon as possible. He is an author I want to keep my eye on!

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The Backstagers and the Ghost Light by Andy Mientus & Rian Sygh

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4stars

Title: The Backstagers and the Ghost Light
Author: Andy Mientus (author) & Rian Sygh (illustrator)
Series: Backstagers #1
Number of pages: 208 (hardcover edition)
Good things about this book: Theater, musicals and ghosts!!
Bad things about this book: Nothing but now I want more and I’m impatient.
Do I recommend it? Yes, of course.
Rate: 4/5

Read the summary and add this book on Goodreads: here

PLOT —
How great is the backstage world? I didn’t know anything about the story behind the ghost light. Is it true? I didn’t investigate about it, but I want to believe it’s true and there are thousands of ghost lights on right now in theaters all around the world. This supernatural adventure was fun, a tiny bit scary, and sad since it dealt with loss.

CHARACTERS —
The same characters from the comics make an appearance showing more depth since there is more space for inner monologues. I loved being inside their heads and getting to know them better. They’re going through some changes and through hard times, but the good thing is they have each other and that’s beautiful. Also, new characters! Yay! Amazing addition!

THOUGHTS —
After reading the two Backstagers comics, I knew what to expect but this story just gave me more. In the comics there is so much to see, a lot of details, yet there are not enough pages to narrate a big story. They did it and I loved it, but with books, there is so much narration, more space for feelings, also more space for a little bit of heartache. I enjoyed how Andy Mientus portrayed the characters from the comics. It was a great beginning!

CONCLUSION —
From the ending and the spine of the book, this is the first of a lot of Backstagers books and I really can’t wait to find out more about what goes on behind the scenes. These stories are simple, easy to read, and very interesting. Its simplicity doesn’t take anything from the overall experience and it leaves you wanting more. And I definitely want more.

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The Lady’s Guide to Petticoats and Piracy by Mackenzi Lee

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5stars

Your beauty is not a tax you are required to pay to take up space in this world.

Title: The Lady’s Guide to Petticoats and Piracy
Author: Mackenzi Lee
Series: Montague Siblings #2
Number of pages: 450 (hardcover edition)
Good things about this book: Very funny and clever with wonderful characters.
Bad things about this book: Nothing.
Do I recommend it? Yes, of course.
Rate: 5/5

Read the summary and add this book on Goodreads: here

It’s a queer thing, to have a vacant space inside you and not know what it is that carved out the absence.

PLOT —
A treasure hunt! I was looking for the perfect description for this book and that’s what came to mind, and it fits perfectly. Felicity sets off for a very peculiar adventure from Edinburgh and ends up somewhere mysterious. Felicity has a mission: she will get to medical school and become a doctor. But the men keep denying her that possibility even if she may be even more capable than most of them put together if given the chance. Men are absurd thinking she couldn’t do the same things they did just because they thought women were weaker. Weak where? Don’t make me laugh!

It is not a failure to readjust my sails to fit the waters I find myself in. It’s a new heading. A fresh start.

CHARACTERS —
Felicity is a sweet and ferocious girl and I love her with all my heart! She surrounds herself with a couple of very interesting girls. One from her past and one from her present, each of them with secrets and goals in mind that’ll somehow bring Felicity on this dangerous journey of discovery. I love those girls so much!! All of them are so special!! I was so happy to see Monty and Percy again even if it wasn’t for many pages. They are so ridiculously and adorably in love, it gave me goose bumps and I smiled a lot.

“Prickly?” I say. “I’m not prickly.”
“Felicity Montague, you are a cactus.”
“Debatable.”

THOUGHTS —
It was infuriating reading about how women were treated not long ago. It’s so actual, maybe not the same, but this superiority complex of men has to stop. It has expired, and it shouldn’t exist anymore. I’m truly sick of it: sick of all the mansplaining, the condescending smiles, the little derision laughs, the way men make us feel. I loved how Felicity challenged this injustice and made everything she could to change the unjust situation.

I have spent so long building up my fortress and learning to tend it alone, because if I didn’t feel I needed anyone, then I wouldn’t miss them if they weren’t there.

CONCLUSION —
Loved the story, loved the characters, and love the ending. I was ready to kick some butt and was glad to see it done by the amazing ladies in this book. If Mackenzie wants to give us one more book with the Montague siblings I’ll accept it with open arms, open heart, and with lots of fangirling.

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Vengeful by V.E. Schwab

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5stars

Maybe we are broken. But we put ourselves back together. We survived. That’s what makes us so powerful. And as for family—well, blood is always family, but family doesn’t always have to be blood.

Title: Vengeful
Author: V.E. Schwab
Series: Villains #2
Number of pages: 575 (hardcover edition)
Good things about this book: It’s just perfect.
Bad things about this book: Nothing.
Do I recommend it? Yes, always yes to a Schwab book.
Rate: 5/5

Read the summary and add this book on Goodreads: here

PLOT —
I have to admit that I didn’t remember in detail everything that happened in Vicious because I didn’t manage to read the book again before Vengeful came out. The first couple of chapters were a bit confusing but then everything fell in place and I remembered everything! The plot of this book, with its back and forward chapters in different points of views built perfectly what was going to be the climax, the chapter that was in development from page one. And I loved every page of it!

You do what you can. You fight, and you win, until you don’t.

CHARACTERS —
Victor Vale is my boy, all in black, emo af, hard outside but a little soft on the inside, and all kinds of brooding. As much as I didn’t like seeing him suffering, I loved seeing him being almost my age: I’m also a 30 something person with questionable life choices. I relate. Eli’s point of view chapters came later in the book and they were fire! Backstory and a sane dose of bromance (more like brohate), exactly what I expected from our Eli boy! Sydney was a little bit annoying for me in this book, too whiney, didn’t see reasons behind choices that were made. I get it, teenager years on the run are not nice but, come on, see the bigger picture, make good decisions! Our big boy Mitch never disappoints, I don’t have anything more to add.
New characters were introduced, and I have to say that, besides a few annoying traits, they were both fantastic additions to the already fantastic crew. Won’t tell anything about them, I went in ignorant and enjoyed the experience more than ever imagined!

Perhaps she was glass. But glass is only brittle until it breaks. Then it’s sharp.

THOUGHTS —
I’m usually in a love or hate relationship with narrations that are told during a very long period of time, but not in this case. While I had to adjust my perception of how I saw the characters, at least the ones that actually grew old, I loved how the story of the book happened during 5 years. The characters not only grew old in aspect, the ones that could, but they were also very different persons inside. Five years on the run, five years imprisoned, can do that to a person, and the way Victoria told the story really conveyed all the aspects of the time passing.

Men look at anyone with power and see only a threat, an obstacle in their path. They never have the sense to see power for what it really is. Potential.

CONCLUSION —
Another perfect book from a perfect and gorgeous woman. That’s why she is an instabuy author for me, she can’t do no wrong in my opinion. Different books, for different audiences, and all of them hit the mark. Amazing job! If there’s going to be a third book, I’m going to be both ready and not ready at all, but I’m going to be there to read it!

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Record of a Spaceborn Few by Becky Chambers

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5stars

From the ground, we stand. From our ships, we live. By the stars, we hope.

Title: Record of a Spaceborn Few
Author: Becky Chambers
Series: Wayfarers #3
Number of pages: 358 (paperback edition)
Good things about this book: It’s just beautiful, perfect, I loved it.
Bad things about this book: Nothing.
Do I recommend it? Yes, 500% yes.
Rate: 5/5

Read the summary and add this book on Goodreads: here

PLOT —
The story is simple, but at the same time very complex, because humans are complicated creatures. We have met different kind of aliens in the last two books, and we’ve met the humans living and working on alien planets; but this time we are seeing humans, focusing on a few, living in an all human community on the Fleet. The Exodus Fleet, the ship the humans built when they knew the Earth didn’t have much longer left to live, is a world unto itself with a very particular way of living that set them apart from the rest of the communities. It was very interesting seeing how they share resources, worked different jobs to maintain the balance in society and economy, all without using money.

CHARACTERS —
There are five main characters, each with a story to tell, each with chapters in their point of view: Tessa, Kip, Sawyer, Eyas, and Isabel. I liked all of them with their different lives and dreams. Loved the diversity, so natural. I won’t explain each character because I think it’ll spoil the story a little bit. They were all so authentic, with their everyday lives; some with a future still to be chosen, some thinking something is missing from their lives, others with a live well lived and with so much history to tell, and some willing to take a leap of faith to change their present to have a better future.

Perhaps none of us can truly explain death. Perhaps none of us should.

THOUGHTS —
As it was always described, these books are a spaceopera. A tale of lives lived in different environments, surrounded by different people, facing different challenges. Each one of these books has given me a sense of tranquility, without taking away a sense of surprise and awe when something didn’t go as planned. This story, with the sole alien character seeing things from her perspective, is meant to show you human beings evolved to an almost perfect and uncorrupted society. But things can’t be perfect all time, it’s just not possible. I loved how things were portrayed, I loved how easy I found myself cheering for the characters!

CONCLUSION —
Simply fantastic. There’s nothing more to add. Superb writing and storytelling. These books have been worth every second I spent reading them and thinking about them when they were over. I will carry them in my heart for eternity.

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And the Ocean Was Our Sky by Patrick Ness & Rovina Cai

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5stars

Here is the truth behind the myth: all men are Toby Wick.
For who needs devils when you have men?

Title: And the Ocean Was Our Sky
Author: Patrick Ness & Rovina Cai (Illustrator)
Number of pages: 160 (hardcover edition)
Good things about this book: It’s beautifully peculiar and very true.
Bad things about this book: Nothing.
Do I recommend it? Yes.
Rate: 5/5

Read the summary and add this book on Goodreads: here

So far, Patrick Ness has never failed me. Every single book he’s written that I’ve read has given me everything I love about books. This book, as peculiar as it may seem, has done just that, and I enjoyed every second of it.

PLOT —
The story was weird, there’s no point denying it: whales hunting humans, whales in search of the mysterious and infamous Toby Wick, who wants all whales dead. Its myth has driven many whales to their death, but still there are some who wants to find him and kill him, avenging the ones who lost their lives by his hand. Pretty simple in its structure, the plot hides surprises you wouldn’t expect.

CHARACTERS —
Bathsheba is the main character. She has lost loved ones because of men, and she joins the hunt because it’s tradition and she’s meant to do it. She is different from the other whales, though. She doesn’t believe in the myth of Toby Wick and she is curious. This curiosity will bring her to doubt everything she encounters because maybe things aren’t just black and white like others paint them.

“You notice what the others don’t.”
“Maybe I do.”
“Doesn’t mean you’re right, though.”
“No. But I begin to wonder if doubt is better than the wrong knowledge.”

THOUGHTS —
Fearlessly strange. That’s what’s been said about this book and they were completely right. I didn’t have issues about the main characters being whales who hunt humans, why would I? This is a Ness’ book, I expect everything. I was surprised by the ending, but it really was so true. I won’t say anything, just read it.

CONCLUSION —
Beautiful written, it kept me glued to the pages. I may not know anything about Moby Dick, so I don’t know how many things these two may have in common, but of one thing I’m certain: it had the usual magic touch, extremely human and intimate and real, that makes Patrick Ness’ books fantastic!

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Cloaked in Shadow by Ben Alderson

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3stars

Title: Cloaked in Shadow
Author: Ben Alderson
Series: The Dragori #1

Number of pages: 350 (paperback edition)
Good things about this book: Elves with magic and shapeshifting abilities!
Bad things about this book: There were a lot of grammar errors.
Do I recommend it? Yes, it’s a nice story!

Read the summary and add this book on Goodreads: here

I’m unsure. While I liked it, and enjoyed it, I felt that something was amiss. I’ll give this book 3.5 stars, a good rating, for a book full of potential, with a main character that was a tad melodramatic and emo, an ex that was forced to play a role that I felt unnecessary, and a prince that was sweet and adorable (Hadrian has flaws but he is a cutie).

Some scenes felt a bit random, like wth is going on, why is Zacriah acting like a child? He was at times annoying, I could picture him in my head whining. The ex-boyfriend thing still bothers me: it just didn’t make any sense and it ruined a nice situation with a pointless scene played by our drama queen Zac!

Don’t get me wrong, I enjoyed the book, even with the many grammar errors I found (then instead of than, lots of your instead of you’re and more), and I can’t wait to see what’s going to happen to Hadrian and the ever so theatrical Zac!

Things left unexplained that I hope are going to be explained in the next two books, because, yes, this is a trilogy and it sounds promising. I have the second book ready, but I never binge read a series; it will have to wait. I just hope the boys are going to be okay in the end, and I hope that Zac will start acting less childish and get a grip! Things are more difficult now and he is needed!

Elves, shapeshifters, druids, magic, there’s a little bit of everything and I will be there to see how the story unfolds, no matter what. The cover made me read the book, it’s beautiful, and the story made me stay. I’ll be here until the end, fingers crossed it’s not going to be the end of the happiness the boys clearly deserve!

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