Spear of Light – The Glittering Edge #2 – Brenda Cooper

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Release date: June 7th, 2016
Publisher: Pyr
Age Group:  Adult
Pages: 400
Format: ARC
Source: Received from the publisher in exchange for an honest review

When the post-human Next suddenly re-appear in a solar system that banished them, humans are threatened. Their reactions vary from disgust and anger to yearning to live forever like the powerful Next, who are casually building a new city out of starships in the heart of the re-wilded planet Lym. The first families of Lym must deal with being invaded while they grapple with their own inner fears.
Ranger Charlie Windar is desperate to save his beloved planet. The Next are building strange cities he never imagined, and other humans who want to destroy the Next are his worst enemies.

Ambassador Nona Hall strives to forge links between the powerful station she’s from, The Diamond Deep, and the people of Lym. The formidable merchant Gunnar Ellensson appears to be up to no good, and as usual his motivations are suspect. Why is he sending ships to Lym, and what does he intend to do with them when he arrives?

The Shining Revolution threatens to undo everything by attacking the Next on Lym, and their desire to eradicate the post-humans is greater than their desire to save humanity’s home. It is entirely possible that they will draw the wrath of the Next onto all of humanity.

In the meantime, the Next’s motives remain inscrutable. Why are they here at all? What do they want? Why are they interested in the ancient past of a planet that has been ravaged and rebuilt at least once?

 

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Top Ten Tuesday: Bookish Worlds I’d Want to/Never Want to Live In

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Top Ten Tuesday was created by The Broke and the Bookish in June of 2010 and was moved to That Artsy Reader Girl in January of 2018. It was born of a love of lists, a love of books, and a desire to bring bookish friends together. The topic today is Bookish Worlds I’d want to/never want to live in. I decided to pick three where I’d like to live and three where I’d rather not live just off the top of my head.

 

Want to live in:

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The Draconis Memoria – Anthony Ryan

Any world with dragons would be a definite ‘yes’ for me, but the one Anthony Ryan has created is (though slightly terrifying) so fascinating I’d really want to experience it. Seeing the different colour dragons in all their glory would be a dream come true! My chances of survival would probably be quite low, but I’d say it’s worth it 😉

 

 

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Shades of Magic – V.E. Schwab

How awesome would it be to live in Arnes/Red London from the Shades of Magic books? A London where magic is prominant and vibrant. Preferably I’d be an Antari and be able to visit the other Londons too, just to see the contrast and be able to experience it all.

 

 

 

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Lord of the Rings – J.R.R. Tolkien

This was an easy choice. I would give a lot to be able to experience the world Tolkien has created in such detail. There are so many aspects of it that I would like to explore! For now, I’ll have to do with the book and movies to get as close to it as I can.

 

Never want to live in:

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Book of the Ancestor – Mark Lawrence

However much I love Nona and the abilities displayed in the book, living in a world mostly covered by ice does not sound nice. The constant threat of the ice advancing and covering even the last ice-free strip sends shivers up my spine. I’ve never been good with dealing with cold. The clear divide between poor and rich would also make my blood boil. Meeting Nona would be great though…

 

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The Handmaid’s Tale – Margaret Atwood

I think this one is pretty straightforward. Any world that treats women like they are treated in the book would not be one I would want to live in. It makes me sad that women in this world, in our reality have to go through similar things.

 

 

 

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Monsters of Verity – V.E. Schwab

The world Schwab has created with the Malchai and Corsai terrorising the streets is one that is pretty terrifying and does not seem like a world I would want to live in, for obvious reasons! I’m intrigued by the idea of the Sunai, but not enough to brave the streets of Verity!

Spotlight: Bloody Rose – Nicholas Eames

I’m pretty sure this book has made it on to almost every single Waiting on Wednesday or Most Anticipated list since the first book came out. Kings of the Wyld was an absolutely amazing book, so much fun! So it’s no surprise that I can’t wait for the second book, Bloody Rose, to hit shelves.

About the book

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Live fast, die young.

Tam Hashford is tired of working at her local pub, slinging drinks for world-famous mercenaries and listening to the bards sing of adventure and glory in the world beyond her sleepy hometown.

When the biggest mercenary band of all rolls into town, led by the infamous Bloody Rose, Tam jumps at the chance to sign on as their bard. It’s adventure she wants – and adventure she gets as the crew embark on a quest that will end in one of two ways: glory or death.

It’s time to take a walk on the wyld side.

Publication date: August 28th, 2018 (Orbit)

 

About the author

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From Nicholas’ website:

Nicholas Eames was born to parents of infinite patience and unstinting support in Wingham, Ontario. Though he attended college for theatre arts, he gave up acting to pursue the infinitely more attainable profession of “epic fantasy novelist.” Kings of the Wyld is his first novel. Nicholas loves black coffee, neat whiskey, the month of October, and video games. He currently lives in Ontario, Canada, and is very probably writing at this moment.

Top Ten Tuesday: Ten Books That I’ve Heard Great Things About But Haven’t Read

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Top Ten Tuesday was created by The Broke and the Bookish in June of 2010 and was moved to That Artsy Reader Girl in January of 2018. It was born of a love of lists, a love of books, and a desire to bring bookish friends together. Today is a freebie topic that we could choose ourselves. I chose to list ten books that I’ve heard great things about but haven’t read yet.

 

The Poppy War – R.F. Kuang

Senlin Ascends – Josiah Bancroft

Nevernight – Jay Kristoff 

Daughter of the Forest – Juliet Marillier

Guns of the Dawn – Adrian Tchaikovsky

The Cruel Prince – Holly Black

Every Heart a Doorway – Seanan McGuire

The Way of Kings – Brandon Sanderson

A Wizard of Earthsea – Ursula K. Le Guin

Sabriel – Garth Nix 

Update: What I’ve Been Writing

Hello everyone!

It’s been pretty quiet on the blog again. I promise you though, I haven’t forgotten my promises from January! The last few months have been crazy. I have been working on something for a long time now, specifically writing something. I started it approximately two years ago at the start of my PhD and yesterday it finally got published! *Insert excited squealing here* Unfortunately it’s not a kickass Fantasy of Science Fiction book, but it’s a scientific literature review about my field of work. Combining writing scientific work and book reviews has been a real challenge for me, which is why I focused on the science more. Obviously getting articles published in prominent journals is very important for my career and writing these articles is also something I genuinly enjoy. Hopefully with this one out I can write a few book reviews before the draft of my next paper gets back from my supervisors with comments! Stay tuned, I’ve read some awesome books in the first part of this year and I can’t wait to share them with you all.

If you’re interested in reading my scientific work, here’s the link to the paper. Unfortunately the full text is not accessible without a personal subscription or through a university.

See you all soon!

 

Edge of Dark – The Glittering Edge #1 – Brenda Cooper

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Release date: March 3rd, 2015
Publisher: Pyr
Age Group:  Adult
Pages: 399
Format: Paperback
Source: Received from the publisher in exchange for an honest review

What if a society banished its worst nightmare to the far edge of the solar system, destined to sip only dregs of light and struggle for the barest living.  And yet, that life thrived?  It grew and learned and became far more than you ever expected, and it wanted to return to the sun.  What if it didn’t share your moral compass in any way?

The Glittering Edge duology describes the clash of forces when an advanced society that has filled a solar system with flesh and blood life meets the near-AI’s that it banished long ago.  This is a story of love for the wild and natural life on a colony planet, complex adventure set in powerful space stations, and the desire to live completely whether you are made of flesh and bone or silicon and carbon fiber.

In Edge of Dark, meet ranger Charlie Windar and his adopted wild predator, and explore their home on a planet that has been raped and restored more than once.  Meet Nona Hall, child of power and privilege from the greatest station in the system, the Diamond Deep.  Meet Nona’s best friend, a young woman named Chrystal who awakens in a robotic body….

 

Review:

I am usually very reluctant to read Space Operas. In general, they are just not for me. It’s strange because I do like them in tv/movies, just not in books. With ‘Edge of Dark’ I took a bit of a plunge in the unknown, searching for something new and exciting to cleanse my palet of epic/high fantasy. It definitely was not what I was expecting, but in a good way. The deeply ethical theme was probably what made me love this book so much. It really made me think, it made me question what I would do in situations presented in the book, how I would cope. It was an interesting journey that I’m happy I embarked on, even though I had my reservations.

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Top Ten Tuesday: Ten Books We Meant To Read In 2017 But Didn’t Get To

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Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme created by The Broke and The Bookish. Every Tuesday bloggers list 10 bookish things according to a certain theme. Today we’re listing ten books that we meant to read but didn’t get to in 2017 (but definitely will in 2018!). There’s definitely enough books to choose from! I picked 10 that are on top of the TBR list and that I’ll try to read in the first few months of the year. Click on the names to be taken to their Goodreads pages.

1- Godblind – Anna Stephens

2 – The Way of Kings – Brandon Sanderson

 

3 – City of Miracles – Robert J Bennett

4 – Star’s End – Cassandra Rose Clarke

5 – Children of Time – Adrian Tchaikovsky

 

6 – The Court of Broken Knives – Anna Smith Spark

7 – The Nine – Tracy Townsend

8 – The Bear and the Serpent – Adrian Tchiakovsky

 

9 – Empress of the Fall – David Hair

10 – Nevernight – Jay Kristoff

 

 

 

 

Update: 2017

2017 has been an incredibly busy year. I’m slowly finding my place in the world through travel, volunteering and my work. It has been a slow year for the blog unfortunately. I’m sad I don’t have as much time and energy anymore to update more often. At the same time I’m learning so much, about myself and about what I want my future to look like. I’m still very keen to keep putting up reviews whenever I can, so that’s what I’ll continue to do.

What have I been doing lately? Well, I coached my quidditch team here in Adelaide and we have went to Nationals in December. I’m also a selector for the Australian National quidditch team, called the Dropbears, for the 2018 World Cup which will be held in Florence. I’ve also started volunteering at a wildlife sanctuary that was closed down 5 years ago and is now being saved by an incredible couple from WA. It has shown me a different life, a different occupation that I had never considered before, but seems very tempting now. Other than all these things, I’ve mostly been enjoying life in Australia. Summer is here and that means amazing sunsets at the beach, wildlife coming to say hello and enjoying the warmer weather.

After these updates about my personal life, I’d love to share my book year with you guys too.

I started 2017 with An Ember in the Ashes by Sabaa Tahir, quickly followed by the second book in the Shades of Magic series by V.E. Schwab, A Gathering of Shadows. Both were books that I enjoyed a lot, so that was a promising start to the year. These were also two of the six books that I gave 5 stars this year so far. The others are: Red Sister by Mark Lawrence, The Waking Fire by Anthony Ryan, Tyrant’s Throne by Sebastien de Castell and Royal Assassin by Robin Hobb. Yes, I’ve only now started the Farseer trilogy. I’ve had them on my shelf for a very long time, but only now found some time to read them. I’m finishing the third book now and I have to agree that it is an amazing series of books.

V.E. Schwab is my favourite discovery from last year. This year I’ve read five of her books and loved every single one of them. I can’t wait to continue that streak next year! Red Sister by Mark Lawrence was a much anticipated book and it met all the high expectations. I’m tentatively calling it the best book I’ve read this year. The Waking Fire by Anthony Ryan also blew me away. I’m a big fan of dragons and any books that feature dragons will get me all excited. This one had a very interesting take on dragons and their relationship with humans, an awesome and elaborate storyline and one hell of an ending. I’m currently reading the second book. Tyrant’s Throne by Sebastien de Castell is the last book in the Greatcoats series and readers of my blog will not be surprised to read that this was one of my most anticipated books of 2017. The end of a much-loved series is always a bit of a question mark. There’s been so many conclusions that just weren’t satisfying, almost bringing the whole series down with them. Luckily Tyrant’s Throne did not do that! It was a very satisfying end, though I’m very sad to say goodbye to the Greatcoats.

The last day of 2017 was spent finishing The Legion of Flame by Anthony Ryan, the second book in the Draconis Memoria, another great book. The first day of 2018 was spent finishing Kings of the Wyld by Nicolas Eames, the first book in the Band series that has gotten raving reviews so far. I can only agree with the many people proclaiming their love for this book as it is certainly a very entertaining read.

Next up for me on Kindle is Behind Her Eyes by Sarah Pinborough, another book by one of my favourite authors that has gotten great reviews. The next paper book I’m going to start is still a slight mystery. I have so much choice that it’s always hard for me to choose which one I want to read first.

I wish you all a great 2018 full of amazing books, adventures and love!

This Savage Song – Monsters of Verity #1 – V.E. Schwab

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Release date: June 7th, 2016
Publisher: Titan Books
Age Group:  (Young) Adult
Pages: 496
Format: E-book
Source: Bought

Kate Harker and August Flynn’s families rule opposite ends of Verity, a grisly metropolis where violent acts summon real monsters: bloodsucking Malchai; clawing Corsai; and soul-stealing Sunai. The truce that keeps the families at peace is crumbling, and August is sent to spy on Kate. But when Harker’s men try to kill her and pin it on the Flynns, August and Kate find themselves running from both sides, in a city where monsters are real…

 

Review:

When I see a book with the name V.E. Schwab on the cover I always get excited now. I must have burned through almost all her books this year! She is probably my favourite discovery of 2017. So far I haven’t read one book that disappointed me and This Savage Song was no exception. Urban Fantasy is very often hit or miss with me and not the genre I would go for if I had a choice in books. Schwab is slowly changing my mind though. This Savage Song is another brilliant Urban Fantasy with a different take on a post-apocalyptic world ravaged by monsters.

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Red Sister – Book of the Ancestor #1 – Mark Lawrence

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Release date: April 6th, 2017
Publisher: Harper Voyager
Age Group:  Adult
Pages: 496
Format: E-galley
Source: Netgalley

I was born for killing – the gods made me to ruin.

At the Convent of Sweet Mercy young girls are raised to be killers. In a few the old bloods show, gifting talents rarely seen since the tribes beached their ships on Abeth. Sweet Mercy hones its novices’ skills to deadly effect: it takes ten years to educate a Red Sister in the ways of blade and fist.

But even the mistresses of sword and shadow don’t truly understand what they have purchased when Nona Grey is brought to their halls as a bloodstained child of eight, falsely accused of murder: guilty of worse.

Stolen from the shadow of the noose, Nona is sought by powerful enemies, and for good reason. Despite the security and isolation of the convent her secret and violent past will find her out. Beneath a dying sun that shines upon a crumbling empire, Nona Grey must come to terms with her demons and learn to become a deadly assassin if she is to survive…

 

Review:

It’s been five years since I read Prince of Thorns, Mark Lawrence’s debut dark fantasy novel. Back then I could see a lot of promise in his writing style and his creative thinking. The Broken Empire proved not to be for everyone, with some voices going up about the protagonist, an anti-hero taken to a whole new level. But even so, the books gained a lot of popularity and Lawrence has been publishing books at a steady pace since then. I haven’t had a chance yet to read his second trilogy, The Red Queen’s War, but it’s definitely on my TBR list.

Red Sister, the first book in a new series called Book of the Ancestor, seems to go down a different road than the previous books he’s written. It is set in a new world, written from a third person perspective and is less dark and gritty than The Broken Empire. Though different, it is just as cleverly put together and just as addictive as his previous books. When I finished Red Sister I had that genuine sad feeling that always seems to creep up on you after finishing a really good book. You don’t want it to end, you want it to keep going. It is a lot harder to pick up a new book after one like Red Sister too, because what will compare?

 

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