Book Review

A Song Below Water |Book Review

Image Copyright: marinainw0nderland

(Disclosure: There are things that I don’t know and through literature I seek answers. Please educate me on things that I don’t know. As always I try to be inclusive. kind and respectful in my reviews. xoxo, Rina )

Synopsis:

Legacies meets Nic Stone’s Dear Martin in Bethany C. Morrow’s debut YA, A Song Below Water, about two best friends discovering their magical identities against the challenges of today’s racism and sexism.

Tavia is already at odds with the world, forced to keep her siren identity under wraps in a society that wants to keep her kind under lock and key. Nevermind she’s also stuck in Portland, Oregon, a city with only a handful of black folk and even fewer of those with magical powers. At least she has her bestie Effie by her side as they tackle high school drama, family secrets, and unrequited crushes.

But everything changes in the aftermath of a siren murder trial that rocks the nation; the girls’ favorite Internet fashion icon reveals she’s also a siren, and the news rips through their community. Tensions escalate when Effie starts being haunted by demons from her past, and Tavia accidentally lets out her magical voice during a police stop. No secret seems safe anymore—soon Portland won’t be either. (Goodreads)

REVIEW

This was a surprising read. This was marketed to me as a mermaid tale. This intrigued me a lot because I had never before read a book that revolved around mermaids.

Pros:

This book had social commentary that I feel is relevant in today’s times. The book revolved around black characters and police violence. I feel like police brutality in the black community has taken a rise, and representation of it is important in literature to begin the conversation of how we can change this. This novel acknowledged the right to protest and showed it in a way of being able to use your voice in order to demand social change. I liked that this novel also showed the use of media, such as Youtube as a means to educate the public on social issues. I valued that this novel portrayed a true representation of what a protest looks like, the precautions one takes when protesting and the risk that one puts themselves in when they are protesting.

I enjoyed that this book included people of color representation and it was written by a black author.

While the book dealt with difficult social issues and had mythical creatures in it, it also displayed teenage love and the innocent feelings of crushes. While it did have a serious undertone to the story, the teenagers still acted like teenagers with magical powers. While the reader is trying to figure out who and what our main characters are, the main character Tavia and Effie are on the same journey as the reader trying to learn about their abilities and what it means to have those abilities in there life.

Favorite Quote:

” What is the status of that? Are we avoiding labels or is he officially your boyfriend?”

“Okay, what makes it official?”

“If he asks you to go steady. Doy.”

“I just don’t think guys literally ask that anymore.” (P.173, Bethany C. Marrow )

Cons:

However, the plotline of having police conflict within the black community was a promising touch, because I thought this was a very important point that provided space to educate the reader. I feel like this giant event was lost among the storyline. This story seemed to not contain a plot other than two girls having to protect one another.

There were different characters that were introduced without any explanation of their mythical origin besides their mythical names. Throughout the entire book, the main characters spent running away from an invisible evil force without really knowing why. Tavia and Effie also spend the greater part of the book not knowing their true identities and the reader spends a lot of the time being confused who is who.

There is a society of mythical creatures that are created to protect the girls called eolokes but, their origin is not explained. It is hard to understand their place in society. All the supernatural creatures lacked a back story. The creatures were all new to me, they were ones that I have never read about before. Which at first gave me excitement for a new fantasy world but the story fell short due to lack of back story and too much trying to be fit in such a short novel.

The family lines were very confusing, as the reader early on find out that the “sisters” are not related by blood. It was hard to identify which sister belonged to which family because it seemed that there was no strong connection between the family. When the families got together it felt like it was one large family, until the reader was reminded that the girls had lived previously in different homes. I personally struggled with making strong connections to their family lines. It did seem that the book tried to make the two families an important aspect of the story but it lacked in creating the connections that helped the reader be able to easily identify which family went to which girl and what roles the family played.

Overall

This book was not exactly my cup of tea. I enjoyed parts of it as I read. There was not much in this book that was very memorable to me and I do not see myself revisiting this book in the future. While I enjoyed the “people of color” representation and I thought that the book gave an interesting and important overview of protesting. The fantasy elements were not for me. I felt that the book lacked a lot of back story, while it introduced numerous amounts of supernatural creatures. I think that just by adding back story and having the book be slightly longer the story could have had a much more lasting effect on me. This siren tale was just not for me.

XOXO,

Rina

Book Review

Dragon Pearl by Yoon Ha Lee

Pages : 320

Publisher: Disney Hyperion

Synopsis:

To keep the family safe, Min’s mother insists that none of them use any fox-magic, such as Charm or shape-shifting. They must appear human at all times. Min feels hemmed in by the household rules and resents the endless chores, the cousins who crowd her, and the aunties who judge her. She would like nothing more than to escape Jinju, her neglected, dust-ridden, and impoverished planet. She’s counting the days until she can follow her older brother, Jun, into the Space Forces and see more of the Thousand Worlds.

When word arrives that Jun is suspected of leaving his post to go in search of the Dragon Pearl, Min knows that something is wrong. Jun would never desert his battle cruiser, even for a mystical object rumored to have tremendous power. She decides to run away to find him and clear his name.

Min’s quest will have her meeting gamblers, pirates, and vengeful ghosts. It will involve deception, lies, and sabotage. She will be forced to use more fox-magic than ever before, and to rely on all of her cleverness and bravery. The outcome may not be what she had hoped, but it has the potential to exceed her wildest dreams. (Goodreads)

Review:

I read this book because the book “DragonsAndTeaBookClub” on instagram was reading this last month. This was a book that took me a while to get into. It told the story of a girl “fox” named Min who wanted to go find her brother after her family was told that he deserted in the line of duty in the space force. She decided to go and find her brother to prove to everyone that he was not a deserter. This led her on a wild adventure through space, working for an evil captain and making the most unlikely of friends.

I really enjoyed the aspect that this book was based loosely on Korean folklore mixed with a space narrative. I loved the whole aspect of space and that the story took place on different space crafts and traveled through the different planets. 

I loved the loyalty that Min had for her brother that she would do anything to defend his name. This book had mystical creatures, foxes who could shapeshift and use charm to get out of trouble, goblins conjuring junk food, and dragons possessing the powers to control the weather. 

This was a new release (January 15, 2019) in the middle-grade genre. At times I did find this book slow to read around the middle but the last 100 pages or so were extremely entertaining. I was super satisfied with the ending and felt that everything was tied together very nicely without loose ends. I can see this book being a stand-alone or it has the potential to be made into a series.

As Many As Possible By 2019 · Book Review

A Wrinkle In Time |Book Review

A Wrinkle in Time (Time Quintet, #1)
Pages. 219
Published: November 7,2017
1st Edition Published in 1962
Publisher: Square Fish

A Wrinkle in Time by Madeleine L’Engle
Synopsis:

It was a dark and stormy night.

Out of this wild night, a strange visitor comes to the Murry house and beckons Meg, her brother Charles Wallace, and their friend Calvin O’Keefe on a most dangerous and extraordinary adventure – one that will threaten their lives and our universe.

Winner of the 1963 Newbery Medal, A Wrinkle in Time is the first book in Madeleine L’Engle’s classic Time Quintet. (Goodreads)

REVIEW:
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

What a beautiful read! I listened to the audio book for this story. And it was so intriguing. I loved the characters and the plot was interesting to me. I think that this story has a deeper meaning.

It was written as a fantasy novel for the time, but it is something else indeed. I think everyone can find something to relate to in this book.

Apart from the magical elements in novel, the book holds a stronger meaning of love, friendship and family. And how the support from your friends and family can get you through the darkest of times.

I think that the darkness that is identified in the novel, is a darkness that is among all of us. Only love can break through the darkness and heals us.

This novel is beautiful with a lot of hidden meaning that is meant to be identified by the reader themselves.

Surprisingly enough this was not one of the books that I read in school, experiencing this for the first was something magical.

Madeline E’Langle has so many beautiful quotes but my favorite of these is the following one “the problem is, it’s not too difficult for kids, but that’s it’s difficult for grown ups. Too many grown ups tend to put themselves into little rooms with windows that don’t open and doors that are locked. And they want to close themselves off from new ideas.”



Book Review

Slayer by Kristine White | Book Review

By Kristen White
Pages:416
Published: January 18, 2019
Publisher: Simon Pulse

SYNOPSIS:

Into every generation a Slayer is born…

Nina and her twin sister, Artemis, are far from normal. It’s hard to be when you grow up at the Watcher’s Academy, which is a bit different from your average boarding school. Here teens are trained as guides for Slayers—girls gifted with supernatural strength to fight the forces of darkness. But while Nina’s mother is a prominent member of the Watcher’s Council, Nina has never embraced the violent Watcher lifestyle. Instead she follows her instincts to heal, carving out a place for herself as the school medic.

Until the day Nina’s life changes forever.

Thanks to Buffy, the famous (and infamous) Slayer that Nina’s father died protecting, Nina is not only the newest Chosen One—she’s the last Slayer, ever. Period.

As Nina hones her skills with her Watcher-in-training, Leo, there’s plenty to keep her occupied: a monster fighting ring, a demon who eats happiness, a shadowy figure that keeps popping up in Nina’s dreams…

But it’s not until bodies start turning up that Nina’s new powers will truly be tested—because someone she loves might be next.

One thing is clear: Being Chosen is easy. Making choices is hard. (Goodreads)

REVIEW:

This book was not what I expected. I was so eagerly waiting for a Buffy-verse book. I was disappointed that there was not as much interaction with Buffy and the original characters. With that said, lets talk about the book.

I really liked that there was a continuation of slayers post-Buffy. This was also the first Buffy-verse book that has been published and it gained popularity from Buffy fans recently. The reason I personally picked it up was that I loved the Buffy-verse so much. It was a no brainer for me that I will be reading it because I was an original Buffy Fan.

My disappointment came from the lack of interaction that happened between our main character Nina and Buffy. For an action/ adventure novel there was not a lot of action events that occurred. There was a lot of information on the Watchers, which is the main characters of the book.

I felt that there was a little confusion involving who the main evil was. The book messed with your head a little because the person that you thought it was, ended up not being it.

I liked the family tension in this book and how it ended up being more of a mystery that Nina had to solve without even knowing. Nina, always thought that her mother hated her but she had no idea why. She resented her mother for events that occurred in her childhood, among her looking for answers she finds information that changes her outlook on her life and her family.

I thought there was a lot of different events that were occurring that were action packed but they were very short and seemed to have an easy resolution to them. I am hoping to see Nina, the slayer fight a danger that is harder to resolve. I think I am comparing the book a little with the tv show in the sense that there were vampires that Buffy killed off easily but there usually was a bigger evil that was planning something. It would have been interesting to see the story play out at the same time from the evils perspective to understand that when Nina, is not fighting it isn’t because something isn’t brewing.

I really enjoyed that there was LGTBQ+ representation and it was done in a very nice way. The characters really cared about there partners and they were willing to risk their lives in order to save them.

Clearly, this is a series and I think the next books are going to get more in-depth of slayer action and Nina stepping into her role as a slayer. However, the ending of the first book left me with questions that I didn’t expect to have in the last 2% of the story.

I am hoping that the next book brings back more of the old characters because I think this generation of watchers can learn a thing or two from the scooby-gang.

Book Review

Girl Who Played with Fire | Review

Pages: 630
Published: March, 2010
Vintage Crime/Black Lizard

Synopsis:

Mikael Blomkvist, crusading publisher of the magazine Millennium, has decided to run a story that will expose an extensive sex trafficking operation. On the eve of its publication, the two reporters responsible for the article are murdered, and the fingerprints found on the murder weapon belong to his friend, the troubled genius hacker Lisbeth Salander. Blomkvist, convinced of Salander’s innocence, plunges into an investigation. Meanwhile, Salander herself is drawn into a murderous game of cat and mouse, which forces her to face her dark past.
(back cover) Goodreads

Review:

It had been a long time since the first time that I visited the world of Lisabeth Salander. Her world does not disappoint. I enjoyed the second installment of “the millennium” series. The book starts with a series of murders of which Lisabeth is being accused of. Our main character Mikael Blomkvist, is determined to prove Lisabeth’s innocence. 

This book gives a better glimpse into who Lisabeth is. Essentially, all of Sweden thinks she is guiltily but there is only one person who believes her innocence and is willing to go to hell and back to prove it.

It was interesting to see how even through the strained relationship that Blomkvist and Salander had throughout the book, he never stopped believing that she was innocent. He didn’t have much proof but, he knew her character. He had so much faith in her innocences that he stopped at nothing to prove it to be true. 

The story is connected with past events that begin to show why Lisabeth is the way she is. Everyone is portraying her as a nutcase but is she really or is someone trying to cover up their wrong doings? 

The second half of the book is extremely fast paced, as the mystery of the murders is being resolved. I personally loved Lisabeth’s character. I think that she is so strong, for how many events occurred to her that were not part of her doing . I also liked that her character was not seen to be painted in angelic form. She had a lot of flaws, but she never tried to pretend that she didn’t. 

This is a slow burn book- the events take time to occur and in the meantime the author gives little glimpse of our protagonist. There are a lot of side characters, who provide a lot background information to our main characters. At first I felt like there was way too much information about them but once you hit the resolution of the book it is so worth having all the side characters and story lines. Every single character in this book plays a role in making the story come together at the end. 

I love thriller novels, this one did not disappoint. The slow burn was very much worth it. The time that I spent reading this book, made me feel as if I was in Sweden. It was extremely nice to escape reality with this story, even though the content did have heavy based material such as rape, abuse, and prostitution. I thought it was written in a way that supported the novel and gave the reader a backstory to the events that occurred in the book. It was written in a very classy way. The ending was everything that I wanted and more. The book resolved so well. I can’t wait to read the next installment. 

Rest In Peace Mr. Larsson! ❤️

0 by 2020 · Book Review

Ignite Me | Book Review

Pages:421
Published: February 24, 2014
Harper Collins

Synopsis:

With Omega Point destroyed, Juliette doesn’t know if the rebels, her friends, or even Adam are alive. But that won’t keep her from trying to take down The Reestablishment once and for all. Now she must rely on Warner, the handsome commander of Sector 45. The one person she never thought she could trust. The same person who saved her life. He promises to help Juliette master her powers and save their dying world . . . but that’s not all he wants with her. Goodreads

REVIEW:

I loved this book. I shipped Warner and Juliette so freaking much. I honestly, did not expect to like this book as much as I thought I would. But, honestly, Warner made it so worth. Clearly, we already know that I am team Warner. I really enjoyed how Warner and Juliette’s relationship was portrayed as if they were equals. I noticed that Warner has always thought that Juliette is such as strong and independent character. He sees that she doesn’t need his protection and his belief in her makes her a stronger individual. I loved that he empowers her and doesn’t bring her down.

I struggled liking Adam, he seemed like such a little whinny character. He tries to protect Juliette while not letting her live up to her fullest potential. I loved Kenji so much, I thought that he can totally be my best friend. He is such a light and fun character. I think that he makes all the tough situations a little lighter. I also enjoyed seeing that he stands up for what he believes even though some of his actions can cause tension between the people in the Omega Point group. Oh my goodness, can I just give a shout out to James. I loved Adams little brother and I love his connection to Warner. James is such a light-hearted individual. I love that he wants to be part of the action but he is also so loved and protected by the others (Juliette, Kenji, Castle, Adam).

Also, there were some steamy romance scenes that I was just living for. I also really enjoyed that this book shows progression of mental health. When the series began you can see that Juliette has a lot of anxiety but as the series progresses she has some great quotes that she says that really show how she is dealing with her mental health and becoming a strong individual. I really enjoyed that Warner owns his flaws. He knows that he has done some bad things, he knows that he is not perfect and he never claims to be. I love that about him. I feel like Adam contradicts himself so much in this book, he claims to love Juliette but the moment that she does something that he is not happy with he shames her for it and makes her out to be this delicate person.

Genuinely enjoyed this book. I hope to get into “Restore Me” soon. I hope that romance between Warner and Juliette continues because I a 100% living for it.

book reflection · Book Review

Beautiful Disaster By Jamie McGuire| Review

15749887Synopsis: The new Abby Abernathy is a good girl. She doesn’t drink or swear, and she has the appropriate number of cardigans in her wardrobe. Abby believes she has enough distance from the darkness of her past, but when she arrives at college with her best friend, her path to a new beginning is quickly challenged by Eastern University’s Walking One-Night Stand.

Travis Maddox, lean, cut, and covered in tattoos, is exactly what Abby needs—and wants—to avoid. He spends his nights winning money in a floating fight ring, and his days as the ultimate college campus charmer. Intrigued by Abby’s resistance to his appeal, Travis tricks her into his daily life with a simple bet. If he loses, he must remain abstinent for a month. If Abby loses, she must live in Travis’s apartment for the same amount of time. Either way, Travis has no idea that he has met his match. (Goodreads)

Review Reflection: 

This was a reread for me. I remember reading this book a few years ago and being completely goo-goo-gaga over Travis Maddox. This book is a love story, following a dysfunctional relationship between Travis and Abbey. Travis is known for sleeping with all the girls on campus and when he meets Abbey, for some reason he wants to change his ways and just be with her. Although, the two struggle with their past selfs and entangle in a dysfunctional abnormal relationship.

If you are looking for healthy romantic representation this is not it. This book shows everything that a relationship should not be, however, the writing and storyline are addicting to read. On a 5 star scale, as an older adult, I would rate this book starsstars/5 stars.  If you are reading this for the entertainment purposes I think you won’t be disappointed, if you are dissecting the book like a science experience, better hold your breath and were your safety goggles.

Initial Thoughts (2013) +Commentary

I loved this book from beginning to end. Although many people compare Jamie McGuire to E.L. James, I think that these two authors are nothing alike.

I really liked watching our female character Abby, grow from being just Travis’s best friend to girlfriend to a girl who stands up for her believes to Travis’s savior. (I still enjoyed this aspect of the book. I really liked how for the first half of the book, the main characters were just friends. It didn’t seem as insta-love, as a lot of young adult books are. )

Man, was Travis something else too. I loved his character. I enjoyed seeing his dark side and how Abby brought out the good in him. ( I still enjoyed seeing the chemistry between Abby and Travis. ) He is impulse and possessive. (Marina, what in the world?? Impulsivity and possessive is now a major turn off for me. In the book, Travis pretty much threatened anyone male who came within 50 feet of Abby. Those situations could have been dealt with in a much classier way.) But, something about his nature makes him sexy. He is afraid of losing the one thing in the world that means the most to him, Abby. He makes stupid decisions and sometimes says the wrong thing but, is willing to give up anything not to lose her. (The thing that makes their relationship irresistible is they go through so much shit together and yet at the end of the day after they decide to be together. I think that was a part that was important to see. Half the book the two main characters are not even together, then they get together and mess up only to break up again, but in the end that work out their differences. I think that in one way it is important to show that it is easy to walk away from something, but with your head on straight it is important to note how important a person is in your life and not be judged for giving second chances or wanting to try again. ) 

The minor characters were really great as well, Shep and America, try their hardest to protect both water and fire elements of Abbey’s and Travis’s personalities. (Still relevant) 

The ending of this book was shocking and unexpected. Overall, I was sad when it all came to an end. I can’t wait to read the story from Travis’s point of view in “Walking Disaster”. (Still, have not read this story from Travis’s point of view)

Book Review

Now or Never: 5 Steps to an Epic Life| Book Review

Now or NeverAuthor: Alexi Panos & Preston Smiles

Pages:  240

Format Devoured: Audio Book

Synopsis: Alexi Panos and Preston Smiles, the internationally recognized next generation thought leaders, redefine what’s possible in relationships, career, and life.

Alexi and Preston went through periods in each of their lives where they felt like they were doing all the right things, but never got the desired results. They read all the best books in self-empowerment and positive thinking, took classes, and sought advice, but there was always something missing. After all of their soul-searching and personal development, they realized that they were missing a connection between mind, body, and soul.

Based on their 12-week successful online program The Bridge Method, Now or Never combines the couple’s years of training into five principles that can help you navigate the real world, learn how to overcome your inner obstacles, and become your best self. Filled with narratives and stories from the duo’s own lives as well as from those they have helped along the way, Now or Never shares exercises, insights, and challenges to help you attain the personal freedom you have always been seeking.

If you want to lead an ideal life, you must become the best version of yourself. Alexi and Preston can be your guides. Choose your life. It’s now or never.

Bookish Thoughts:

This was good. It had a lot of great information and easy to follow prompts to get you thinking about the ideas that were presented in this book. I would love to own the physical copy of this book to mark up all my favorite lines and go back to reference information.

This was a book that was realistic in terms of how you can use the information in this book in your day to day life and it got you thinking about the things you would like to change while prompting you with how you can make those things a reality. I really enjoyed the little prompt questions at the end of each chapter because as a reader you are able to physically use the information rather than just absorb it.

The audiobook was enjoyable and read like a light radio show.

Book Review

Matilda by Roald Dahl | Book Review

MatildaPages: 240

Published: June 1, 1998

Publisher: Puffin Books

Synopsis: Matilda is a little girl who is far too good to be true. At age five-and-a-half she’s knocking off double-digit multiplication problems and blitz-reading Dickens. Even more remarkably, her classmates love her even though she’s a super-nerd and the teacher’s pet. But everything is not perfect in Matilda’s world. For starters she has two of the most idiotic, self-centered parents who ever lived. Then there’s the large, busty nightmare of a school principal, Miss (“The”) Trunchbull, a former hammer-throwing champion who flings children at will and is approximately as sympathetic as a bulldozer. Fortunately for Matilda, she has the inner resources to deal with such annoyances: astonishing intelligence, saintly patience, and an innate predilection for revenge.

She warms up with some practical jokes aimed at her hapless parents, but the true test comes when she rallies in defense of her teacher, the sweet Miss Honey, against the diabolical Trunchbull. There is never any doubt that Matilda will carry the day. Even so, this wonderful story is far from predictable. Roald Dahl, while keeping the plot moving imaginatively, also has an unerring ear for emotional truth. The reader cares about Matilda because in addition to all her other gifts, she has real feelings. (Goodreads)

My Bookish Thoughts: 

This is one of my rereads for this year. I have always loved this book, and it is so near and dear to my heart. I have read it several times in my life. This book tells a story of a young girl named Matilda who is a lot wiser than her age.

I feel like this particular book is very much character driven. I initially connected with Matilda through her love of books. I visually can picture the first few chapters of the book so vividly in my mind and how Matilda goes to the library while her mom is out playing bingo. This book has stuck with me from the first time that I have read it back in elementary school until now.

I love how whimsical characters are. Matilda plays a lot of pranks on the evil Trunchbull. Matilda likes justice and throughout the book whenever the Trunchbull does something that seems to be unfair Matilda is the one to try to get revenge on the Trunchbull.

I really enjoyed the magical element in this book it really ties everything nicely together and gives the book a satisfying conclusion. I really enjoyed having Kate Winslet narrate the audiobook. She is such a fabulous narrator for this particular book. She brought all the characters and situations to life and it was very enjoyable.  If you have not read this, what are you doing? You are literally missing out on a childhood favorite. Go check it out. Right now!!!

With Warm Cups of Tea and Just a Few More Chapters,

Rina

 

Book Review

Wonderwoman: Warbringer by Leigh Bardugo |Book Review

WarbringerPages: 364

Published: August 28, 2017

Publisher: Random House Children’s Publishing

Synopsis:  Daughter of immortals.

Princess Diana longs to prove herself to her legendary warrior sisters. But when the opportunity finally comes, she throws away her chance at glory and breaks Amazon law—risking exile—to save a mortal. Diana will soon learn that she has rescued no ordinary girl, and that with this single brave act, she may have doomed the world.

Daughter of death.

Alia Keralis just wanted to escape her overprotective brother with a semester at sea. She doesn’t know she is being hunted by people who think her very existence could spark a world war. When a bomb detonates aboard her ship, Alia is rescued by a mysterious girl of extraordinary strength and forced to confront a horrible truth: Alia is a Warbringer—a direct descendant of the infamous Helen of Troy, fated to bring about an age of bloodshed and misery.

Together.

Two girls will face an army of enemies—mortal and divine—determined to either destroy or possess the Warbringer. Tested beyond the bounds of their abilities, Diana and Alia must find a way to unleash hidden strengths and forge an unlikely alliance. Because if they have any hope of saving both their worlds, they will have to stand side by side against the tide of war. (Goodreads)

My Bookish Thoughts:

This book has been sitting on my shelf for such a long time. I remember that I bought it right when it came out because of the cover art on this book. It is absolutely gorgeous. Also, it was written by Leigh Bardugo whom I have read in the past so, I had rather high expectations for this book.

Honestly, I was quite disappointed. I wanted this to be more of an origin tale about wonder woman and how the Amazons came to be. But, this was not that at all. In fact, I felt that Diana wasn’t even the main character of the novel. This was quite a let down for me.

If you are expecting this to be solely about Wonder woman, I have to say you may be disappointed with this book. As it really follows our main character Alia,  who is wanted dead because she is supposed to be the next warbringer, meaning she causes people around her to become angry which leads to the outbreak of war. Diana is determined to find a way to save Alia from the curse of being the warbringer.

This book wasn’t terrible but if you are a fan of Leigh Bardugo, I feel you may notice that the writing style in this book seems to be a little forced and not her regular enticing writing as in “Shadow and Bone”. I didn’t feel any connection to the characters and honestly could have cared less if anyone died in the book. Also, the storyline was overly complicated and it really didn’t need to be. I think that if the book just told the history of Diana and her entrance into the human world halfway through the novel, the story would have been more enjoyable. I wanted more backstory on her life as an Amazon, vs Diana running around New York.  Diana, had the potential of being this kick-ass character. And although she had a few high action scenes in this novel, I felt it didn’t really do her justice.

This is the second time that I picked this book up. The first time that I tried reading it I couldn’t get past the first chapter. This time around it helped that I listened to the audiobook because I feel like I would have personally dnf’ed it had I been reading the physical copy. It honestly didn’t capture my attention from the very beginning and I only continued with the audiobook because it was going by a lot faster. I noticed that I had to relisten to some portions because I would miss a few details. But, it held my attention better as an audiobook.

This book was just meh.  I’m glad to have it off my TBR (To be read) shelf. But, it just was disappointing, it dragged in a lot of parts and I couldn’t relate to any of the characters or world building in this book. This book had so much potential, as being an origin story but it just felt like nothing really happened for the majority of the book. The major action-packed scene occurred with 21 minutes left in the audiobook. And the ending of the book seemed to just resolve way to easily and quickly.

In conclusion, it was just meh… I loved that Young Adult literature tried to play around with iconic D.C. Characters but, it just ended up being flat. If you loved the movie “Wonder Woman”, I would honestly skip this read. But, the cover was HELLA pretty!!!

With Warm Cups of Tea and Just A Few More Chapters,

Rina