Traitor To The Throne

A rather surprising sequel, after the last time I read this was maybe last year in November. But one which did surprise me in many ways.

Amani goes through quite a lot here, and well learning to be in the palace and trying to survive and escape there was much more interesting really. As she slowly navigates, tries to figure out and also gets to know the Sultan. Which to my surprise, she is still the same as ever before but with a better sense of politics. At the end of it, she certainly does seem a lot more grown than before.

As for the Sultan, again he is a very good convincing villain. He isn’t perfect but he is the one who kept the throne for who knows how many years, and is truly ruthless. Not kidding, which makes me even more interested in him. Since he is like many of history’s kings, benevolent ones were more the rarity rather than the norm, an tyrants were relatively uncommon. But the Sultan to me is pragmatic, he does know that winning his people over is an important thing. No king can rule without popular favour even when their countries are all in favour of having brothers kill each other for the throne. But again, I still like him.

As for the romance, honestly it doesn’t bring anything to table and I don’t really feel much for Jin, who is just there. Well, he doesn’t want to lead, but will still do plenty to things to save Amani. But nothing else. So, not really interested.

As for Ahmed, on some levels yes he does have some good points. On others, well his father was correct about him. He is a good leader, but not necessarily someone who can hold onto power. Well, I do hope captivity changes him quite a little bit.

As for the plot, it really focused on the right bits. Rebellions have a lot of politics in it finding allies and armies who will support you is extremely important. You are seen as a threat when you can compare to them, not when your rebels can be squashed. So, yeah I like when the book is focusing on the plot of fighting against the Sultan, which requires a fair bit of political intrigue.

As for the tales, I frankly loved them. But not much apart from that, and the whole djinns being responsible for humans creation and Dmenji being unable to tell a lie. That was all so nice, and the opening was always my favourite as of now.

So, you can say that I simply fell in love with this book. It may have been rather okay in the first book, now, I am waiting for the sequel like no other. Verdict: recommended.

Rating: 4 out of 5

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Moonlit Waltz

I guess that the whole appeal with this entire story is that it is short and sweet and doesn’t drag out unnecessary agony.

It was okay overall, not making things too complicated all the while I did enjoy how Ella was portrayed too. Add in a little touch of werewolf magic and I did find this rather okay overall.

But that is about it.

Everything else was just too light for my taste and I guess this wasn’t written for me. I like my books darker, although this gives good breathing room but it simply doesn’t make me think.

And when it doesn’t haunt me to continuously think about the story you can see why I will have to lower it. It is just going to be forgotten by me, and probably I will never remember it.

Overall, whether you do want to read it is up to you. It just wasn’t to my taste.

Rating: 2 out of 5

The Deceived

If anything, I was more confused by the work at all. I just really didn’t seem to have understood much of it at all.

I just don’t feel a single connection to any of the characters at all, neither did it really make me interested in the work at all. Just some demons like Lucifer, then an archangel and some angels.

But really, I don’t feel any connection to them. And making me invested is really important in a book. It just didn’t do it.

The writing was okay, if you ask me. And the world having some interesting aspects but nothing much apart from it. I just didn’t like the work at all, since there was virtually no character who managed to catch my attention.

However the premise was interesting and definitely what I did see here. Except that I just didn’t feel a thing for the characters, which again is the book’s greatest flaw.

This is simply a case of just not my taste. And well, I guess I just can’t help it that I have picked up such a book.

Rating: 2 out of 5

Ash And Quill

This was rather decent. Although the book did have plenty of character development and even moving the plot forward in a way that I expected it would.

Such as the building of the printing press, and also finally making deals with his father. Jess’ family is truly unique to be reading through, and when he is on I really like the interactions between the Brightwell family, it is fascinating to figure out the dynamics. As well as certain reveals with the other characters, Dario’s illustrious family and also, Thomas getting some development and being a little more common. Expected after what he had been through.

Although it didn’t really thrill me in a way that I hoped it will, noe did it work as well as the first book did, but it is similar to the second book in nature and development. Slow, but eventually it will catch up on its pace and I think from it it will get a lot more faster paced.

The ending was indeed a surprise to me, but it was rather fine and did serve as to why Jess will have a younger brother. Apart from the fact that his younger brother is dangerous and different than Jess, and his father is always in for a good deal. It stays rather consistent throughout. And I’m a sucker for family dynamics which are messed up.

So, overall this was a solid sequel. Although not stunning nor outshining the first book, but I do believe that the unique concept and also rather dark world, will be something that many will enjoy.

Rating: 3 out of 5

The Fallen Kingdom

A satisfying end to the series. Really, I have to admit it. The ending was rather perfect, with plenty of hard sacrifices which Aileana have to make and eventually resolve quite nicely to give a good ending. All the while, making this world a breath of fresh air in its worldbuilding and take on fairies.

By the way, Aithinne is my favorite out of the series. The more I read her, the more she grows on me, and the more she makes me smile. Quite sad to see this end really.

And I really appreciate how Aileana has to make a difficult decision, and nothing did indeed come easy for her. And everything has its price, and really it was enjoyable to see her finally get an ending that I find was satisfying.

The ending was rather nice and fulfilling. And it did go in a way I never really expected it too, seeing as how it went back to what we knew. But in a way I never thought it will, and surprising me but at the same managing to have all the characters survive and some with unknown ending too.

But finally, the author is willing to make the difficult decisions and the characters really do suffer. Although at times I was rather bored, and at times the pacing was really fast and the pages were flying. But to me, this series is good. It is unique when compared to most, with its own folktales and beliefs. And also, it does take what we know and doesn’t go down the usual route. So, I find it rather refreshing and do recommend you to check it out. Naturally, start from the Falconer.

Rating: 4 out of 5

The Alistair’s Hearts

I feel that the author really handled the main character well, and that despite having no memories, as we slowly see and discover the world through his eyes. It definitely was an interesting read, with a rather unique take onto it.

Kaamil is simply a boy who lost his memories, and like many he has remembered plenty of things by the end. And the story is limited, and narrated through him which did serve the story well. The writing really flowed and worked for me.

A flaw I did notice was that the middle did take quite a long time, and then a lot of time passes without much happening. Although I do see the need for him to learn. But there was just some parts where my interest waned in Kaamil. There was just some moments when it does happen, and I don’t seem to have any fondness for any of the other characters.

However the world does seem to be part of an apocalypse with plenty of explanations and magic intertwined. The time is roughly 200 years after us, and the author clearly takes advantage of the future and also the world.

Overall, this work was well written and does explore it all well. On some level, the characters didn’t click with me apart from Kaamil, which is subjective if you ask me. The characters just wasn’t to my taste, but overall an interesting read nonetheless.

Rating: 3 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