Review: The Girl in the Tower

34050917The Girl in the Tower by Katherine Arden

Series: Winternight Trilogy
Genres: Historical Fiction, Fantasy, Fiction
Maturity Rating: 4
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Rating: ⋆⋆⋆⋆


Orphaned and cast out as a witch by her village, Vasya’s options are few: resign herself to life in a convent, or allow her older sister to make her a match with a Moscovite prince. Both doom her to life in a tower, cut off from the vast world she longs to explore. So instead she chooses adventure, disguising herself as a boy and riding her horse into the woods. When a battle with some bandits who have been terrorizing the countryside earns her the admiration of the Grand Prince of Moscow, she must carefully guard the secret of her gender to remain in his good graces—even as she realizes his kingdom is under threat from mysterious forces only she will be able to stop. 


The Girl in the Tower was not quite as amazing as The Bear and the Nightingale, but was still an outstanding read.

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Ranking Austen

Since Star Wars Episode 8 came out about a month ago, I’ve seen TONS of lists ranking the Star Wars movies from worst to best, favorite to least favorite, whatever. Oh my gosh, it’s so much fun, and I just had to do it too! Which led to a LONG list ranking my favorite Marvel movies (lots of unpopular opinions there!), and then led to me talking about all the bookish rankings I could do.

Oh my gosh. Ranking books and movies is my new addiction.

So, for absolutely no reason at all other than this is what I WANTED to do on a Sunday morning while I’m stuck in bed having braxton-hicks contractions, my list of Jane Austen novels from most favorite to least favorite. Enjoy! Continue reading

Review: Renegades

la-et-renegades-cover-20170515Renegades by Marissa Meyer

Series: Renegades
Genres: Young Adult, Action/Adventure, Fiction
Maturity Rating: 3+
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Rating: ⋆⋆⋆⋆


The Renegades are a syndicate of prodigies—humans with extraordinary abilities—who emerged from the ruins of a crumbled society and established peace and order where chaos reigned. As champions of justice, they remain a symbol of hope and courage to everyone…except the villains they once overthrew.

Nova has a reason to hate the Renegades, and she is on a mission for vengeance. As she gets closer to her target, she meets Adrian, a Renegade boy who believes in justice—and in Nova. But Nova’s allegiance is to a villain who has the power to end them both.


They told me Marissa Meyer was a genius at world-building, and it wasn’t that I didn’t believe them, I guess I just didn’t get it. HO-LY COW. This world was completely real to me. I was so convinced, there was so much detail, just wow. Only occasionally did the extra-super-hero-y names and words kind of jump out and jolt me into remember that this book is, in fact, pretend. Words like “chromium”, “Galton City”, stuff like that. I don’t know, it was a little cheesy. Perfect for a super hero novel. But I loved how easy it was to get absorbed into the world and the characters and the story.

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Review: The Song of Achilles

51erEvChGpL._SX331_BO1,204,203,200_The Song of Achilles by Madeline Miller

Genres: Historical Fiction, Fiction
Maturity Rating: 5
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Rating: ⋆⋆⋆⋆


Greece in the age of heroes. Patroclus, an awkward young prince, has been exiled to the court of King Peleus and his perfect son Achilles. Despite their difference, Achilles befriends the shamed prince, and as they grow into young men skilled in the arts of war and medicine, their bond blossoms into something deeper – despite the displeasure of Achilles’ mother Thetis, a cruel sea goddess. 

But when word comes that Helen of Sparta has been kidnapped, Achilles must go to war in distant Troy and fulfill his destiny. Torn between love and fear for his friend, Patroclus goes with him, little knowing that the years that follow will test everything they hold dear.


The Song of Achilles was just so completely different from what I was expecting that I’m not even really sure how to review it. I wasn’t expecting a love story AT ALL, but that’s essentially what the book was. I suppose if I was better versed in Greek History I wouldn’t have been surprised, or if I was any good at reading a synopsis properly, lol.

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Review: Stalking Jack the Ripper

51nTreUEtgL._SX331_BO1,204,203,200_Stalking Jack the Ripper by Kerri Maniscalco

Series: Stalking Jack the Ripper
Genres: Young Adult, Historical Fiction, Fiction
Maturity Level: 4-
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Rating: ⋆⋆⋆⋆


Seventeen-year-old Audrey Rose Wadsworth was born a lord’s daughter, with a life of wealth and privilege stretched out before her. But between the social teas and silk dress fittings, she leads a forbidden secret life.

Against her stern father’s wishes and society’s expectations, Audrey often slips away to her uncle’s laboratory to study the gruesome practice of forensic medicine. When her work on a string of savagely killed corpses drags Audrey into the investigation of a serial murderer, her search for answers brings her close to her own sheltered world.


While not the best-written book I have ever read, Stalking Jack the Ripper sure was a lot of fun! There’s not enough books out there about Jack the Ripper in my opinion, and I’m glad Maniscalco gave this one such a fun twist.

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Review: Turtles All the Way Down

35504431Turtles All the Way Down by John Green

Genres: Young Adult, Fiction
Maturity Level: 5
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Rating: ⋆⋆⋆⋆


Sixteen-year-old Aza never intended to pursue the mystery of fugitive billionaire Russell Pickett, but there’s a hundred-thousand-dollar reward at stake and her Best and Most Fearless Friend, Daisy, is eager to investigate. So together, they navigate the short distance and broad divides that separate them from Russell Pickett’s son, Davis.

Aza is trying. She is trying to be a good daughter, a good friend, a good student, and maybe even a good detective, while also living within the ever-tightening spiral of her own thoughts. 


I have always felt that it’s important to differentiate between something’s quality and how much you personally liked it, but with Turtles All the Way Down that distinction is even more necessary than usual.

Not everyone will like this book.

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Review: Shopgirl

10873Shopgirl by Steve Martin

Genres: Fiction, Novella
Maturity Rating: 5
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Rating: ⋆


Lonely, depressed, Vermont transplant Mirabelle Buttersfield, who sells expensive evening gloves nobody ever buys at Neiman Marcus in Beverly Hills and spends her evenings watching television with her two cats. She attempts to forge a relationship with middle-aged, womanizing, Seattle millionaire Ray Porter while being pursued by socially inept and unambitious slacker Jeremy.


Ouch, one-star? Sorry Steve. I wanted to love your book as much as I love your movies, but I just didn’t. The humor style was completely different than I’m used to seeing from you, and I didn’t connect with it at all.

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