Happy Fourth of July!

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Book Review: The Robber Bride by Jerrica Knight-Catania

Book Review: The Robber Bride by Jerrica Knight-Catania

Image result for The Robber Bride by  Jerrica Knight-CataniaVictoria knew she needed to enact change in the world when she saw a poor girl on the streets.  So, she robbed the rich and gave all of the money to those who needed it more than the haughty aristocrats.  Her friend Phineas Dartwell, Earl of Leyburn suspects that Victoria is hiding something.  He wishes that Victoria would confide him but she refuses and he severs their friendship because of a wounded pride and an injured heart.  But when Victoria’s activities are brought to life, Phineas will do anything to see that his friend and perhaps future wife be acquitted of the charges.

The Robber Bride was a wonderful tale that I truly enjoyed.  I adored the main character who cared about those more unfortunate than her.  Indeed, she stole from the rich and gave to the poor much like Robin Hood but she did it all alone and almost no one knew of her illegal activities.  She cared about everyone even though she was a part of the peerage.  I loved how she was not afraid to back down even if her impetuousness sometimes got her into trouble.  Her friend, Fin was quite a wonderful gentleman who loved painting and cared dearly about Victoria and her brother.  It was hard not to like his character.  I was further endeared to Fin when he adopted Sally even though she was from the streets.

Image result for it was perfect gifBesides the fascinating characters, I liked how the book did not completely focus on the romance.  In fact, the romance seemed to be a major side note.   The two main characters were in fact friends for the entirety of the book.  There were a couple kisses thrown in but it wasn’t until the very end of the book that the romance blossoming between Victoria and Fin finally came to a head with a proposal of marriage and a declaration of love.  This contributed to my enjoyment of the book for some books can become tedious and dramatic when they focus completely on the romance and add little action to spice the book up.

I would recommend this book especially to those who enjoy a romance with a lot of action.  In the case of this book a little action of a lady highwayman who steals from her peers to give to those who have less than she.

 

Sharing Saturday Thirty-One

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Thirty-one weeks of Sharing Saturdays has reached us.  Time has just flown by me.  So, today I will share with you a poem I wrote about time.  It is about how we have little time on this Earth and we must use it wisely.  The poem is meant to be encouraging to show that each and every person is important in the scheme time has laid.

We are but minutes in the vast expanse of time

A single tiny thread in a grand tapestry

As one ends another continues

Without one thread or minute

The pattern of the world itself is disrupted

Author Highlights Seven

Shannon Hale 1 (1)Here is the second Author Highlights I promised for the month of June.  Finally, I will be caught up with this post.  It only took a few months but here we are.  This means that we are in the seventh month of me doing this post.  It’s been over half a year which is weird since it seriously seems like yesterday when I started this blog.  I know I say that a lot but it’s true.  Anyways let’s get this post started.  The author of today is…..

Shannon Hale

Image result for Shannon HaleShannon Hale has written over thirty books.  Several are individual books while other are part of a series.  She is most known for her Princess Academy Series.

I have read the Princess Academy series, The Goose Girl,  and the Book of a Thousand Days.  I loved each of these stories and I still treasure them despite the fact that the books are for a younger audience.

Miri lives on a mountain where, for generations, her ancestors have quarried stone and lived a simple life. Then word comes that the king’s priests have divined her small village the home of the future princess. In a year’s time, the prince himself will come and choose his bride from among the girls of the village. The king’s ministers set up an academy on the mountain, and every teenage girl must attend and learn how to become a princess.

Miri soon finds herself confronted with a harsh academy mistress, bitter competition among the girls, and her own conflicting desires to be chosen and win the heart of her childhood best friend. But when bandits seek out the academy to kidnap the future princess, Miri must rally the girls together and use a power unique to the mountain dwellers to save herself and her classmates.

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Image result for The Goose GirlAnidora-Kiladra Talianna Isilee, Crown Princess of Kildenree spent the first years of her life listening to her aunt’s incredible stories and learning the language of the birds. Little knowing how valuable her aunt’s strange knowledge would prove to be when she grew older. From the Grimm’s fairy tale of the princess who became a goose girl before she could become a queen, Shannon Hale has woven an incredible, original and magical tale of a girl who must understand her own incredible talents before she can overcome those who wish her harm.

Image result for Book of a Thousand DaysWhen Dashti, a maid, and Lady Saren, her mistress, are shut in a tower for seven years because of Saren’s refusal to marry a man she despises, the two prepare for a very long and dark imprisonment.

As food runs low and the days go from broiling hot to freezing cold, it is all Dashti can do to keep them fed and comfortable. With the arrival outside the tower of Saren’s two suitors–one welcome, the other decidedly less so–the girls are confronted with both hope and great danger, and Dashti must make the desperate choices of a girl whose life is worth more than she knows.

For more information on the author visit her website at http://www.shannonhale.com/.

 

 

Book Review: The Duchess War by Courtney Milan

Book Review: The Duchess War by Courtney Milan

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Minnie is shy and timid, a common wallflower.  That is how she wants to be seen to escape from the scandal of her past.  A past that caused her to change her name and hide her nature.  However, her facade is soon threatened when the Duke of Clermont comes to town.  He is immediately drawn to the seemingly inane Minnie but he soon realizes she is not all that she attempts to appear to be.  He tries to uncover her secrets even as she searches for his.  But this women may prove to be more than his match…..

This book was an intriguingly simple tale of a Duke and girl who suffered scandal at the young age of twelve.  I adored the book especially the characters.  The main character Minnie hid behind a timid facade that I enjoyed uncovering throughout the course of the book. However, I was occasionally annoyed by her inaction and unwillingness to let herself go. Robert, the Duke, was sweet, likable, and kind.  He had a horrible childhood and he struggled to find peace with his mom.  I was endeared to him because he was a sweet talker.  Furthermore, he was concerned for the working class and wished for the peerage to be abolished even though he ranked highly among it. Minnie and Robert were two wonderful main characters whose adventure I loved to read about.

Image result for yes gifBeyond the characters, the premise of the story which took place in Regency England was quite like many other English historical romance books.  A girl was looking for a husband but she was not all that she seemed and then she met an unattainable man.  However, I enjoyed how the book mentioned the works being done for the poor and those who worked in factories.  It spent a portion of the book focusing on the rights of the middle class and lower classes and how the peerage of the time could have helped and how some did.  In the case of the book stirring pamphlets were written by the Duke.

The backstory continued to add appeal to the book for Minnie had been a world-renowned chess player.  I myself have always enjoyed chess and it was fun to read about a young girl who could beat grown men at the game.  The book also applied chess to Minnie’s character by constantly showing how she weighed each move she made like life was one big chess game.

The Duchess War was a fun and easy read.  I would recommend this book to those in need of a sweet story with lovable characters. I truly enjoyed this book and if you read it I know you will too.

 

Sharing Saturday Thirty

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Saturday is here!  This is one of my favorite times of the week for I love this post.  Today we are going to do something a little different.  I am going to share book trailers for some of my favorite books and my opinions on whether they represent the book well.  This is going to be so fun.  I may start doing this more often during my Sharing Saturday’s so let me know what book trailers I should do.  Let’s get started!

Rebel of the Sands by Alwyn Hamilton:

The imagery is good.  It is blue and sandy much as the cover suggests it should be.  The blue-eyed bandit is decently portrayed but I think less time should have been spent on what authors and journals thought about the book and more on what the book is actually about.  The music is a wonderful addition adding drama and intrigue to the trailer.  I think overall that the book trailer decently portrayed the book but it did not show the true fire and spirit of the book.

Reawakened by Colleen Houck:

I think this trailer did a much better job of portraying the book than the previous one.  We are shown the magic of the world through the disappearing words and images and the book is thoroughly explained.  However, the music was horrible.  I did not think it went very well with the book.  I did like that certain images and creatures were shown that are seen throughout the book.  Overall, I think it did an excellent job of showing us Reawakened.

The Bone Witch by Rin Chupeco:

This trailer did a pretty good job of depicting the book.  The background was amazing and fully gave me a sense of the book.  However, I felt that what the book was about was not fully given.  Despite that, I love the little bit of music that was included which added drama and emotion at the perfect moments.  This trailer was suitable for the book but I think it could have been improved upon a little bit.

 

 

Book Review: The Forbidden Wish by Jessica Khoury

Book Review: The Forbidden Wish by Jessica Khoury

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Zahra has been trapped in her lamp for thousands of years until a young thief by the name of Aladdin rubs her lamp and becomes her master.  She is shoved into a greatly changed world where her magic and she is forbidden.  In order to survive, she must use her shapeshifting magic until Aladdin uses his three wishes.  When the King of Jinn offers her freedom if she saves his son she seizes onto the opportunity.  Except she finds that she is falling in love with Aladdin.  She will have to betray him to get the freedom she seeks.  As time unravels and her enemies close in, Zahra finds herself suspended between danger and desire.  But which will win, her desire for freedom or her love for Aladdin?

The Forbidden Wish was a wonderful retelling of Aladdin.  I loved how it was not from the point of view of Aladdin but that of the Jinni, Zahra.   Zahra was a wonderful character who was easy to love.  It was effortless to relate to her feeling of being trapped because sometimes we all feel trapped.  Zahra was filled with thousands of years of pain and regret and the reader watched as she struggled to overcome the past that plagued her.

The book conveyed the meaning of being at the mercy of others, of being trapped and unable to escape.  I think it helped me to understand how it would truly feel to be a Jinni of the lamp who could grant powerful wishes but never leave and was always under the command of others.

The other characters were each uniquely stunning in their own ways.  Aladdin was a thief determined not to become the leader the people wanted him to be.  The princess and her companions were awesome because it was unexpected to see young women in such a society behave as they did.  The other characters added their own personalities and touches to parts of the book making it burst full of life.

Beyond the colorful characters the book was filled with descriptions of a wonderful and magical world.  A world of bazaars and trees that carried the fruit of gems such as diamonds, rubies, and emeralds.  It was sensational to read of all the things that magic had wrought in the book’s setting.

Overall the book was an enchanting retelling of the classic tale of Aladdin.  I would exceedingly recommend this book for the writing style and voice express the pain, anger, regret, joys, and sadness of an infinite being: the Jinni.

“As the poets say, stories are truth told through lies.”   – The Forbidden Wish.  Read this book and see the truth behind the story of an infinite tale that has withstood the ravages of time.