Tag Archives: fantasy

A Dance with Dragons by George R. R. Martin

Cover via Goodreads.

Cover via Goodreads.

Rating: 3/5 stars.

In an earlier review I wrote that George R. R. Martin writes in waves. Through his characters, he creates currents that culminate into a tsunami of rage and retribution. Hundreds of pages spent describing his characters’ mundane actions contribute to the development of their story arcs, and each detail adds to the climaxes of his books. However, this did not happen in A Dance with Dragons – for at least half of the book, I felt that I was knee deep in random, unidentifiable water, reading page after page of unnecessary information. Continue reading

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Filed under 3 stars, Book Reviews, Books

A Feast for Crows by George R.R. Martin

Cover via Goodreads.

Cover via Goodreads.

Rating: 4/5 stars.

At this point I’ve learned that George R.R. Martin writes in waves. Even though this probably isn’t how real science works, I visualize his plot structure as a giant tsunami: he adds little oscillatory currents that contribute to a huge tidal wave, which eventually crashes down and drowns us all in the most beautiful and devastating way. Though this might sound like how all books function – with a rising action leading up to a climax – Martin spends so much time developing and honing the rising action of his story that the inevitable climax calls for a great deal of praise.

Like A Clash of Kings, A Feast for Crows serves as the buildup of the tsunami. Continue reading

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Filed under 4 stars, Book Reviews, Books

A Game of Thrones by George R.R. Martin

Cover via goodreads.com.

Cover via goodreads.com.

Rating: 5/5 stars.

I literally gave myself a pep talk to prepare for this book. I looked at myself in the mirror and and whispered “Okay, Thomas. As someone who gets extremely and unnecessarily attached to fictional characters, all you have to do is turn off your empathy. Everyone knows that everyone dies in this series. Just force yourself not to care.” This dialogue took place after a shower, so I even wrote “no more caring” on the fogged-up glass.

And, yes, I still shed a tear at the end. Continue reading

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Filed under 5 stars, Book Reviews, Books

Proxy by Alex London

Cover via Goodreads.

Cover via Goodreads.

Rating: 4.5/5 stars.

Going along with my idea of book reproduction in my review of Speechless, Proxy would be the child of Uglies by Scott Westerfeld and Legend by Marie Lu. It blends fast-paced action with a well-fleshed futuristic world, complete with characters that are rife with wit and passion.

Knox has never felt consequences before. Continue reading

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Filed under 4.5 stars, Book Reviews, Books

Clockwork Princess by Cassandra Clare

Cover via Goodreads.

Cover via Goodreads.

Rating: 5/5 stars.

In 23 days I’ll be 18. That’s part of the reason why I’m giving Clockwork Princess five stars, even if it may not deserve all of them.

There were definite imperfections within the finale of the Infernal Devices trilogy. Some of the plot twists could have been easily predicted ahead of time. The characters leaped out of their personalities for the sake of the plot, and there was a repetitiveness to the story structure I found irksome (how many times can you end a chapter with someone screaming?) Also, that epilogue was pure fan service – I almost found it insulting that Cassandra Clare chose to include it.

But, through pathos, the book hit all the right points. Continue reading

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Filed under 5 stars, Book Reviews, Books

Draggon Slippers by Jessica Day George

Cover via Goodreads.

Cover via Goodreads.

Rating: 4/5 stars.

Creel doesn’t particularly care for her aunt – and Creel’s aunt doesn’t particularly care for her, either, considering that she tries to sell Creel to a dragon. After Creel’s parents passed away she had no choice but to reside with her aunt. But when her extended family runs into financial problems, Creel is sent to face a dragon in hopes of getting a dashing – and wealthy – knight to save her. Things take a more interesting turn when Creel walks away with a blue pair of slippers and a dream of owning a seamstress shop. She embarks on a journey that includes myriad magical things: handsome princes, annoying princesses, and dangerous dragons.

My friend got this for me as a belated Christmas gift. While its intended for younger readers, I still enjoyed Creel’s tale of heroism and adventure – it’s crazy to think about how this is acclaimed children/YA fantasy author Jessica Day George’s first book. Continue reading

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Filed under 4 stars, Book Reviews, Books

Memoirs of an Imaginary Friend by Matthew Dicks

Cover via Goodreads.

Cover via Goodreads.

Rating: 5/5 stars.

Have you ever watched a movie where you knew how it was going to end right from the beginning, but you still cried when the ending came anyway? That’s what happened to me with Memoirs of an Imaginary Friend.

Budo is Max’s imaginary friend. He looks more human than most imaginary friends, can pass through doors and windows, and he loves Max. The bad part is that if Max stops believing in him, Budo will disappear. Max’s life moves as smoothly as it can for a child with a mental disability until one of his teachers does something that endangers his life. Now it’s up to Budo to rescue him, even if the costs him his own existence.

The best part of Matthew Dicks’ third novel was its voice. Continue reading

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Filed under 5 stars, Book Reviews, Books

Gemini Bites by Patrick Ryan

Cover via Goodreads.

Cover via Goodreads.

Rating: 3/5 stars.

Overall, a cute, funny, not-so-serious story about two siblings fighting for a mysterious guy who might have supernatural abilities. Here’s a quote I liked:

“I stared out at the dark orange field surrounding us, and my heart was in my ears now, whump, whump, whump, and I had this totally moronic sequence of thoughts: Something gay is about to happen here. This spot will forevermore be the place where you had your first gay encounter. People will live here one day, in a nice big house, and never know they’re living on a sacred ground of gayness.”

Judy and Kyle Renneker, sixteen-year-old fraternal twins in a family of nine, have competed with one another throughout their lives. Judy has always been a jerk, and her latest scheme involves seducing an attractive, religious boy by pretending to be Christian. Kyle recently came out to his family and more or less desires a boyfriend. Things get shaken up when Garret Johnson, a strange and slightly vampiric guy their age, decides to reside in the attic of their house for a short amount of time.

Patrick Ryan could have taken Gemini Bites in many different directions. Continue reading

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Filed under 3 stars, Book Reviews, Books

The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater

Cover via Goodreads.

Rating: 3.5/5 stars. I almost cannot believe that I am giving less than 4 stars to a book by Maggie Stiefvater.

The Raven Boys revolves around Blue Sargent, the daughter of a clairvoyant mother. Blue herself cannot see the future, but she amplifies the powers of those around her – and, ever since she was young, she’s been told that if she kisses her true love, he’ll die. After seeing a shocking vision one night, Blue finds herself entangled in a group of academically and financially superior guys from Aglionby Academy. Known as the Raven Boys, Blue knows that she shouldn’t get caught up in their conquests – but, inevitably, she’s drawn deeper and deeper into their dangerous, mysterious circle.

I have terribly missed reading Maggie Stiefvater’s writing. It’s still beautiful, and her decision to write about the supernatural, prophecies, and Glendower shows that she’s not afraid to try new things in the realm of young-adult fiction. Continue reading

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Filed under 3.5 stars, Book Reviews, Books

The Crown of Embers by Rae Carson

Cover via Goodreads.

Rating: 5/5 stars.

Females! Young-adult females! And males, too, I suppose – drop what you’re reading and check this series out. Or finish what you’re reading and then check it out, as Rae Carson has come into her own with The Crown of Embers. Similar to the Mortal Instruments trilogy, the first book in the Fire and Thorns trilogy (The Girl of Fire and Thorns) didn’t win me over, but its sequel did. Boy, it did.

In The Crown of Embers Elisa continues her quest to fulfill the duty given to her by her Godstone. As queen of her kingdom, one might expect this to be easy – but it is anything other than that. Riots begin to break out as some are dissatisfied with her rule, enemies emerge from inside and outside of her palace, and her confidence wavers as even her allies seem to conspire against her. After a failed attempt on her life, Elisa decides to embark on a journey to redeem herself and revitalize her country – before it is too late.

Elisa has earned her spot amongst my favorite female protagonists. Continue reading

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Filed under 5 stars, Book Reviews, Books