A Rebel Among Us

DNF @46%

I really tried to read this book, but it just really dragged on for too long.

I did like the beginning with David and the whole entire scene where he wakes up and learn about them. I found that entertaining.

Although I was expecting a romance, but I just didn’t expect it to take this long for anything to happen. I was expecting a lot more of questions, and a lot more of suspicion. I mean the title is a rebel among us. I expected a little more tension.

What I really got was mostly a little romance, some obstruction. But nothing that really lights up my mind or makes me want to read on. Almost halfway through the book I just couldn’t hold onto it anymore. There is very little reason why I want to read it.

There is almost no real character exploration or really understanding. And the romance, I just didn’t feel the chemistry together. Although I liked how they were kind to him. But I just wanted more than this, it just didn’t satisfy my tastes enough.

Perhaps this is for you, but it just isn’t for me.

Rating: 2 out of 5

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The Cloister

This was a really interesting tale about Both World War II, religion and also the 12th century.

I did find the entire focus to be there. The writing good enough to handle the difference in styles and syntax, since how we spoke nearly a century ago will be extremely different from now. And the way that it managed to interwine it with the entirely storyline well enough.

The writing and the tale of Heloise was the real reason why I fell in love with this book. Rachel was incredibly relatable too, but she wasn’t as engaging as Heloise. Heloise who indeed was brilliant, who did really accept her own ideals. And really, she was willing to pursue what she believed was hers, and love when the chance came. I find that rather courageous to do, and to even support Peter, no matter how hard the times.

As for the religion aspect, I’m not a Christian, but I did like how it was simply as a choice. Or the different interpretations of the religion, for I do know about their very bloody history when it came to difference of opinions.

One flaw that I really don’t tolerate much is that what was the plot of Rachel’s story, she seems to be wanting to tell the world of their story. But it seems that after a while, it just doesn’t get fulfilled. And I will have highly preferred for her to have really gone through the war in France, although the ending was rather poignant and open ended. I just didn’t care that much for Rachel, since all My sympathies was with Heloise for the most part.

Overall, I just really enjoyed this book. There was something that really worked this tale for me, and Heloise was always the one who won my heart.

Rating: 4 out of 5

The River And The Ravages

I really enjoyed the book for what it was, a gorgeous romance which I fell in love with somehow. As well the topics that it discussed in the way that I wanted it to.

I like Aaliya in the way that she is rather real, and makes an effort to make romance works. And Maddalena, even if she did have a remarriage, there is some form of ambition with her. And well with me, I like a woman witj ambition and hopes. Aaliya is rather different than that, but nonetheless I enjoyed her. Although still cannot be compared to Maddalena. To me she was the one who I not only liked but loved the most.

As for the intrigue, I found it really interesting and also really interesting. The writing gave it an added edge which made me love it even more, when it flows nicely and all the while making a lot of interesting situations.

Overall, the world is rather interesting and the way that despite this being a male dominated society. There is a lot of nuance to these characters presented here and to me they felt vivid and even complicated. As for the mature parts of the novel, I believe that it is handled well and even presented in a way that I enjoy it.

Overall this was a very interesting and even enjoyable novel. In a way that the characters were well rounded and real, with the ending being rather well done in the way that I enjoyed this. For me, I will recommend this.

Rating: 4 out of 5

The Hundredth Queen

This feels like every fantasy book I have read. Mostly because the world is unclear, the rules for why they are killing each other and the women simply take it are incredibly stupid. Why would women want to go through that kind of rite.

However, rank tournaments was only revived rather recently in the book. But the only thing that made so little sense to me was, why the hell didn’t they do anything about it. The women would not just accept it without some great thinking on Tarek’s part. It was just accepted. Are the women here really that stupid and shallow?

Well, they all are. I couldn’t believe how stupid they were. In fact, if you were to compare them to the typical ideal of a woman. They all are willing to fight other women to the death just for the sake of marrying a single man, who can also in time do the exact same thing. Is anything really that stupid as to accept this when it was only recently revived. I would say, Rajah Tarek needed to be a tyrant, and well, he most definitely doesn’t feel as one. And well, I mean in that world is the only kind of woman apart from our dear main character either naive, shallow. Jaya doesn’t really have any personality.

Although I know that they tend to be raised to obey and follow. But really, why doesn’t anyone sees the stupidity of it and is pointless to comtinye.

There are way better ways to do so than fight through rank tournaments, and killing is allowed to be done, and yet not one single wife realised the stupidity of this entire tournament. Not even our dear protagonist. Anyone with a functioning brain can reduce that. Way to go to let the women appear even more shallow.

And from that all, Kalinda is a special snowflake. She is plain, yet she ends up being picked and called beautiful by many. She has some special abilities, but I don’t bother to find out because really, with all those problems above, I didn’t even see the possibility of me continuing. Most of the characters there lacked common sense to see that it is wrong, when sisterhood is practiced by them, yet there is so much of hostility among the wives. Which only worsens once the rank tournaments.

Well, with all that you don’t really need me to answer whether I want to recommend this book.

Rating: 1 out of 5

Halayda

Something about this just didn’t work with me. Although at times I did like the worldbuilding yet there was something that I could always find it so difficult just to read and have to trod myself through.

Despite having four POVs, I barely could even remember which was which and all of them merged together. Is this a bad sign? Yes, since I can’t even tell them apart. And basically, not even one of them had kept my interest. And as you all know me, I love reading with characters. And none of them once again grabbed me to start reading with them(really when can I have an interesting session of character study all over again. Or finding that at least one of them seems interesting.) And well, even immortals like Talyan didn’t have any interesting quirks, and that guy has been wishing to die for almost twelve centuries.

I can’t even figure it out whether it was the writing or the style that killed this book. Because, Talyan would have proved interesting to read. As did all the faes who have been alive for centuries.

Why was Talyan wanted Sylvie. None of the characters had any interesting traits which kept me reading. And these days, it is incredibly more difficult to get to me. Perhaps it’s a matter of less time and higher expectations. Because I for once, want to enjoy a book now. I don’t think I want to go into a book just to tear it all apart.

The only thing that really did grab my interest was the worldbuilding, which at times was indeed rather convenient. However, the Fae lore is definitely more interesting here. It takes some very interesting aspects of them which I was always so thankful for in this book. At least it’s refreshing.

The plot, well what I did remember of the plot was that Sylvie was something of the Fae King, and that he was depending on her or something. Then, of course Talyan faced some rebellions here and there against Sylvie. Basically, I couldn’t be bothered to keep up. Oh, and there’s a romance too and you don’t even need to guess the ending(it’s the one that’s always given.)

These days, I’m giving up on so many books. And well, you know whether I will end up recommending this book after reading that chunk of text.

I voluntarily requested a copy of this book from Netgalley.

Rating: 2 out of 5

Hunted

This puts a spin onto what we knew as Beauty and the Beast. There are some moments where it resembles it and some moments where it won’t (there isn’t a character who will kill the Beast). And I enjoy this Russian inspired retelling of it, not a carbon copy but keeps familiar scenes of it. And unlike Belle, Yeva does not have any chance to be found in gorgeous clothing.

Yeva, in the beginning craves for the Forest. And when she does get it, it is when her father loses all his money on a trade caravan. And most importantly, all of her sisters are not happy, but they deal with this loss resolutely and quickly try to sell their possessions for as high a price as possible. Do I welcome this change? Yes.

And that Solmir(the parallel of Gaston), isn’t horrible and a pretty nice guy. And does wait for her, as well as willing to marry her, and his ending is one that I think will be happy. He does deserve it since he’s not a jerk unlike the Disney version.

As for both her sisters, they are relatively important. They do what is necessary and doesn’t give up hope, but I can’t really figure anything out other than this.

As for the way the romance was, it is slow, and their instances are more realistic than any other. I could feel their slow romance and their interactions were indeed different from the original but I greatly prefer it too. Yeva isn’t someone who needs saving, and she depends on no one other than herself and is a trained hunter. It was refreshing as compared to it, and the spin and liberties are all the more interesting.

Instead of a beast who was too in love with himself, it is a man who eventually lost sight who didn’t know what he wanted and eventually searched for it continuously. Eventually falling to desires, and the whole basis of this goes down to Russian myths. Which I’m sorry unaware of. But in such a setting, it makes sense to do so.

As for the ending, it doesn’t answer much questions. It’s more open and like an ending to a folk tale instead of a happily ever after, short and distant. But enough to surmise their romance and story together.

Rating: 4 out of 5′

Playing By Heart

Well, this was a surprise. I never thought I will be able to love historical romances again, or even think of it as anything remotely touching. But this was the right one for me.

I mean, Emilia wants to be married and not bound to a convent. She wants more than some Tom, Dick or Harry. And she is willing to go ways for it, to ensure that she has a stable place in life and nothing to worry about.

What made me really care about her is her willingness and flaws, she can be envious. She is envious, but when things really comes down to choices she will still place her sisters above all else. And she will still sacrifice herself for her family, and when she does love I really like her. I guess it her was strength and the want to be able to control her life and not just leave it to chance, even if it means a lot of time spent talking to people. Finding plans. But you know what, this is the kind I really want to read about more. Emilia works for her own future, she may love someone beneath her but she never gives up hope of ever seeing them together.

As for all the women, I really like Adrianna. I mean, she is a great mother even though she is more like their sister instead. Another note is that she isn’t what we always see, she is sensitive and does quite a bit to help Emilia and Maria. Especially knowing them well enough. As for Maria, I guess she had fell a little flat apart from her single minded devotion to God but never really doing much to suggest to her father that going to a convent was for her. But she did do what she did for god when she learned that she could not become a nun. But that’s about it.

As for Antonio Bellini, I just really like him. He may be a musician, but he does have some past which becomes relevant. It is rather understandable why he will want to do that. And why he doesn’t want the title, it does make me understand him very well. And I just really like a guy who won’t compromise himself too much, and is well aware of his own standing. Not to mention, willing to take time to gather a fortune because he loves Emilia and goes through all the ways of the time and respecting her.

As for the ending, it was what I did expect of such a book. And it really made me like them, perhaps it was just the main characters who really clicked with me and the writing which worked so well for me to get into their heads. And really, I will fall in love with a girl who takes an active part in her life rather than just hoping for her wishes to come true.

Rating: 4 out of 5