The Medievalist

I will say that this was surprising, despite it being a time travel tale but set out to tell the tale of one of Britain’s most perplexing mystery that has raged for five hundred years.

Many will say that he killed his nephews and recently many will disagree. Well, I won’t take a stand here but it does fascinate me how such a mystery still is such a huge mystery today, and that we are nowhere closer. Although this book gives a slightly fictional but plausible ending for the Princes in the Tower, and a slightly more sympathetic light to King Richard III.

Although Jayne was originally really okay, I never found her to really stand out but she really had much connection with me and was a suitable narrator for this extremely perplexing mystery and although a little biased. But this is fiction, so, I can’t say that she was wrong and there is still no hard evidence that she was right.

But the tale is in the 15th century, and that the narrators being from different times does set it out. Jayne is still rather modern, while Richard takes a older style which is what I will expect of him since he is a medieval figure and here is where I feel that the time does set them apart.

As for the plot, it is how history unfolds but the ending is a nice twist and final end to this. I do like that closure was found in the modern world, and Jayne was right. And that this is fiction although she can never say that he did it and neither can anyone say that he did not, the princes merely dissaapeared there was no bodies of them, no definite evidence that they were certainly dead by the hand of his uncle.

But this is simply a take on the whole mystery, deviating from the usual. However this will be prove to be interested and even entertaining sometimes heartwarming sometimes rather clever. But I guess I’ll just leave it as it is.

Rating: 4 out of 5


The Becoming Of Ellicia Wayfield

This is simply a case of it not being to my expectations. I expected it to be a much funnier then what I got. I guess urban fantasy and paranormal only works for me when it simply is much funnier than it seems.

And well, this just doesn’t cut it. Ellicia, she has very little interesting things about her. I thought that perhaps she will be more active and at least more snarky in a way that I wanted it.

But it never had the same kind of effect that I wanted in it. And that although the world does seem different, but really it doesn’t do a really through explanation. And that I simply didn’t like how some things seemed so out of control for Ellicia, or that Ellicia didn’t do anything to rebel against it. Or at least test the limits out.

I just wanted more than what I got, and that my expectations for such a book is a little more to the funnier side. And those are the ones that stick at least for me.

This isn’t just to my expectations, it didn’t really do anything that really stood out to me. Hence I just didn’t like it nor enjoy it. Well, I will still recommend it, it may be for you but just wasn’t for me.

Rating: 2 out of 5

Our Dark Duet

Once again, this author has managed to find the unbelievable to kill me again, I loved This Savage Song, and these is a satisfying sequel. One with an ending that is suitable in my eyes yet completely torn me apart.

Returning to this world, again is as bleak as it always was. We make our own monsters, and these monsters have been created through our sins. Is there an easy way out? I doubt so and the author doesn’t try some deus ex machina, everything has its consequences. And every price is paid here.

And here is where there is an ending to it all, dealing with all the problems the previous book left us with. Sloan making a rebellion, and running it all with a secret weapon. Kate, outside and hunting monsters continuously, before making her way back. August, doing what he was meant to do. Except that there is so much more of the final fight, the final end to this story. With plenty of stakes and consequences, the author really did what she always did. And also, she never lets us off the hook.

Like I said, dealing with the whole theme of us making our own monsters was simply amazing. And again, I always know that there isn’t one way to make it easy. And Kate, as well as August both make sacrifices here. Kate who is plagued by the chaos eater, to August who had probably killed so many of them as he goes along. And well, this would end their story. In a bittersweet way, and one ending that there is no definite answer. A true open ending, and one where answers were given yet there were so many possibilities unexplored.

But again this is a story about us making out own monsters. One which the author knew how to make it difficult, and even saddened me by the ending. A fitting end for Kate and August and one which is bleak, but had a ray of hope. Will I recommend? Yes, it is quite rare to see this ever dealt with, and in such a satisfying way too.

Rating: 4.5 out of 5

How Important Is Pacing?

Pacing needs to be just right, there is something that we cannot deny. I have read and dropped many books due to poor pacing, such as reveals happening too late in the story or something. Which tells me that pacing is important.

The right kind of pacing does depend on the story. Here are some questions which I think can help with deciding the pace you’re moving at. And to decide whether a story might need revision.

#1 Is There Breathing Space?

It is extremely important for many books, you cannot have too many reveals at one go. Have a moment where the reader can take a break from the non stop action. There are plenty of ways to make the breathing space seem less like fluff, but ensure that there is enough space so that it does not overwhelm the reader.

#2 Is something happening?

Usually this applies to a book around the first half, since I have read books that seemed to have zero plot movement for the first half or moves at a snail’s pace. And then, there are authors who save everything for the last book in a series, creating what everyone calls middle book syndrome where almost nothing happens but setting things up.

Pacing doesn’t need to be fast, but it must be able to move and reveal certain things about the character or perhaps a certain development. Something has to happen otherwise why is it even a book if the main characters do not go through a journey.

#3 Are all the characters still the same?

For me, character development need not always be good. And also, they need not to have grown, but something must be revealed about them and changes them. It doesn’t always have to be their personality, perhaps their attitude towards a certain issue. Or perhaps their perspective.

Or if you tend to write characters who don’t grow but have plenty of depth, and different aspects to his character that just need time to be revealed.

If your character at the beginning is still the same person, without anything that gives them more depth, then I will say that it may need some work.

So overall, this is how I judge pacing of a story. However, do tell if you have another opinion.

Lord Of Shadows

Well this was one completely different ride from what I thought. And one that I had enjoyed far more than any other book in this world, really this was by far the best.

The stakes here are indeed higher, and it deals with the mess of the previous story as we all know it. Of the Dark war and the Cold Peace. And I’m amazed at how seamless it was for me to integrate into the world once again, something about her writing made it easy to remember everything. And well, I had a couple of moments where I did smile. And moments where I really felt nothing but agony.

Most importantly, was how large this cast was. And how diverse they all were. Mental illness isn’t a stigma, it is accepting that they are different. That they just need to spend time together to learn to be together. And well, as for Diana, trust me I’m utterly blown away by what she was. It will be something that is much more different than what anyone thinks, and the author handled her well. Presenting her as a capable, strong woman.

As for the main plot, such as the faeries who want an end to the cold peace. Or shadowhunters who wished to do a lot worse to them. Here I really feel that almost all the characters make very difficult decisions. Including Emma and Julian, both of them are not going to destroy a world for themselves, instead they are going to make some sacrifices to fall out of love. And you know what, that will be sensible since the kind of miracle that came with Clary and Jace will never happen again. And here, there are some losses. And I do really feel it right now, since the author is a lot more nuanced with them. And that there are plenty of consequences to every action and there really isn’t an easy way out of many issues.

But again, I really wonder why can’t Kit make his own choices? He would be a fine help to Ty, that’s true since he knows that they exist. And that they just need a little help. But really he should be given a chance to choose for himself. That is really my only complaint.

But the characters are awesome. I did warm up to Mark, but Julian is still my favourite. I mean, he has the most amount of problems and he became a father when he was the grand age of twelve. And you know, he is just as he is, and well he is still my favourite out of all of them. Emma has become more readable but nothing around her stands out. But I do rather like Cristina, and love the way thay Ty is characterized as strong and capable, he just needs a little help.

I think that with this world, I can finally say that I really want to continue reading this world, and I’m more than willing to continue reading the next book and most definitely The Last Hours. Will I recommend even for new readers to this? Yes, this is easy to read and it is easy to find yourself really in the world and immersed in it. And also, plenty of diversity in the way that is respectful and still proving that they are capable people.

Rating: 4.5 out of 5

Vassa In The Night

Something about this book clicked with me, took me on a wild ride and did make my mind go all the way in trying to make sense of what was happening.

And well, I did like the Russian folklores even if I have almost no idea of what any of them tell. But definitely, loved the story here. The way that it managed to make me interested in Vassa and her journey, and all the mysteries around. Something is rather wrong here and it definitely starts to escalate even more slowly. Even though I’m still not entirely sure what just happened. But really, the tale is quite dark, and happens to be quite weird too.

Somehow, I just liked the way things went. Something here is horribly wrong, such as how night is getting longer and longer. All the while Vassa gets into all sorts of trouble. Even though this was probably a pretty weird story, where I just enjoyed the ride. But it won’t be for everyone.

To me, this is magical realism at its best. At least when I feel I can be taken for a ride, and have absolutely no idea what is going on yet thoroughly enjoy it. And well, the way that it is written definitely would be confusing to many. Somehow it just worked with me. Something just clicked with me when it came to this book, and something just worked too.

Ending it off, I really have no idea how I should recommend this book. It is enjoyable, even without having much idea what is going on. But can be incredibly frustrating to some, and well like I said, it will go down to whether you would instead like a story where there is plenty of weirdness and bizarre moments. And also, moments that you probably have to reread to get sense of it, or really have little idea till the end. Strangely, I enjoyed the tale. That is all

Rating: 3.5 out of 5

The Censor’s Hand

This was the most surprising book I have read. It was the right kind of darkeness, as well as sexism and having a very relatable main character which I really connected with.

Miranda was really what kept me reading. The way that she seemed so real, she is confident and not completely the type of typical protagonist. She isn’t filled with emotions, neither is she always wanting to prove herself. I like it when a protagonist is like that, which is what really clicked with me. She is obeying orders, but she is confident in her abilities and talents, but never always needing validation or even some guy to tell that she is good. That is where this novel really did well on.

The other characters didn’t keep my interest as much as Miranda did. And the world although well developed and clearly interesting suffered due to the plot. I really couldfind many moments where I was bored, so completely bored of the novel. And moments when I was hooked. That is what I consider a flaw of the novel.

Although it has one character who really shone for me, in a world where there is a lot of injustices as well as problems. All the while suggesting some hope, I like that Miranda is not the centre of it all. But there were moments where the pacing failed to hook me, and for some part of the book I had to put it down. But overall, this was a worthwhile read.

My verdict: Recommended fod Fantasy fans, this is really written for you.

Rating: 3 out of 5