Posted in WWW Wednesday

WWW Wednesday – February 12th 2020

“Go ahead, binge.”

First line in Binge by Tyler Oakley

Hi, guys. It’s Wednesday! Here you have my weekly update on my reading through WWW Wednesday. It’s a weekly meme hosted by Sam @ Taking on a World of Words, and it’s meant to give you all a little insight into my reading this week. I’ll answer the 3 questions:

  • What are you currently reading?
  • What did you recently finish?
  • What do you think you’ll read next

What did you recently finish?

Nothing… The last book I finished is still The Exiled Queen which I talked about last week. I have a review up for it now, however, if you’re interested. 

What are you currently reading?

My commute book is Words of Radiance by Brandon Sanderson. I only have about 150 pages left so I’ll finish in a couple of days. I plan to take a short break from the series after this one because I’m dreading the situation where I don’t have a Stormlight book left to read. I really want to take my time with the series but it’s going to be hard. They are just so damn enjoyable to read. 

I’m also reading Autoboyography by Christina Lauren which I’m 70% through. So almost done with that one as well. It has seriously captured by attention by being so much more than what I expected. I assumed it was just going to be a cute contemporary but I actually find myself thinking and learning while reading. Can’t wait to read the ending to see whether this will become a new favorite of mine. 

 

What do you think you’ll read next?

The Gray Wolf Throne by Cinda Williams Chima. Book 3 in the Seven Realms series, because why stop when you’re on a roll. 

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Posted in Book Review

Book Review and Spoiler Talk: The Exiled Queen by Cinda Williams Chima

“Lieutenant Mac Gillen of the Queen’s Guard of the Fells hunched his shoulders against the witch wind that howled out of the frozen wastelands to the north and west.”

First line in The Exiled Queen by Cinda Williams Chima

Hi, guys. I’m back with another review of a book in the Seven Realms series!! We’ve made it to book 2: The Exiled Queen. As in my post for the first book, I’m going to give my overall thoughts of the book first and then transition into a spoiler-section in the end. However, be aware that there will be spoilers for The Demon King in my overall thoughts. 

Author: Cinda Williams Chima

Published: September 1st 2010

Genre: YA Fantasy

Series: Seven Realms, Book 2

My rating: 4 stars

Synopsis: Haunted by the loss of his mother and sister, Han Alister journeys south to begin his schooling at Mystwerk House in Oden’s Ford. But leaving the Fells doesn’t mean that danger isn’t far behind. Han is hunted every step of the way by the Bayars, a powerful wizarding family set on reclaiming the amulet Han stole from them. And Mystwerk House has dangers of its own. There, Han meets Crow, a mysterious wizard who agrees to tutor Han in the darker parts of sorcery—but the bargain they make is one Han may regret.

Meanwhile, Princess Raisa ana’Marianna runs from a forced marriage in the Fells, accompanied by her friend Amon and his triple of cadets. Now, the safest place for Raisa is Wein House, the military academy at Oden’s Ford. If Raisa can pass as a regular student, Wein House will offer both sanctuary and the education Raisa needs to succeed as the next Gray Wolf queen.

Everything changes when Han and Raisa’s paths cross, in this epic tale of uncertain friendships, cut-throat politics, and the irresistible power of attraction.

Goodreads

Spoiler-free Review

The Exiled Queen starts off right where we left the characters in The Demon King with both Han and Raisa travelling towards Oden’s ford with their respective groups. I gotta say that this made me a little worried I wouldn’t like the book. It’s clear that our characters are going to travel a while and then enter a school setting at Oden’s ford. A long travel and a school setting are two of my least favorite things to read about so I was not set up to like this book. However, it worked out really well. 

The first half of the book is the strongest in my opinion. It’s very action packed while at the same time expanding the world and teaching you about the different realms. Those are both things I wanted more of from this book compared to the first. 

The latter half is spent more on character development which was also needed but the story dragged a little bit because of it. Maybe it’s just me and that school setting not getting along but the story was more or less put on hold while the characters were learning stuff. The positive outcome of this, however, is that I like the our main characters more after reading this. Especially Han’s character came together for me and I now appreciate him a lot more. Raisa is a character I’m not completely sure I love yet. She has moments where I can tell she has the potential to become my favorite character… but then she also has moments where she’s the stereotypical annoying female character so I’m not sure what to think of her. 

The last thing I just want to mention in this part of the review is the book’s commentary on racism. It’s very subtle but nonetheless effective which I think is completely intentional. None of our two main characters are the subject of the discrimination so they don’t experience the problem in the same way as someone like Dancer. Very much a real-life representation of privilege I would say. 

Now, let’s move on to the spoiler section. 

Spoiler Talk

I’ve made a list because I love lists. This is in no particular order and is just a list of random thoughts I had while reading. Enjoy. 

  • Very cool that we started with a chapter from the POV of Mac Gillen. I love these kinds of insights into the mind workings of the bad guys.
  • I normally don’t enjoy long ‘travel sequences’ in books but this is an exception. First of all because action is happening all the time!! Second of all because I really like how Chima uses the characters’ journey as a way of showing off the world. And not just the scenery. We get little insights into the culture and political situation of the different areas and it’s so cleverly done. I love it!
  • That first scene with the Henri Tourant guy… I appreciate it when an author can make me despise a character in just a couple of pages. He was so obnoxious and so realistic too. I’ve definitely been in arguments with people like him who don’t check their “facts”.
  • For some reason I find it hilarious that Han is such a ladies man. And that we actually see it! We’re just not told about some relationships in the past (although we get that too), but we also see him unapologetically turning around to look at some girl’s legs while he’s talking to Dancer. It’s not that he’s a “bad boy” because of it, well,… he is but in a good way, you know. I really just think it’s refreshing to see this character trait in a male MC.
  • I’m sad to say that I find Raisa annoying. Especially in that scene when Amon tells her why they can’t be together. She keeps interrupting him because she just assumes that she must have all the information. Just listen to him for a second! When she suggested that they try kissing anyway, I almost rolled my eyes to the back of my head. He’s just told her it’s going to put him in excruciating pain and she just wants to try it out? Great solution.
  • I wish Han would interact more with his friends Dancer and Cat. We barely saw his friendship with Dancer in the first book and I had hoped this would be rectified when they actually went to school together. It didn’t exactly. It gives me the feeling of being told about a friendship instead of seeing it but of course it’s a minor detail.
  • Gotta admit… I assumed Dancer was gay. But okay, he’s with Cat now. We don’t know much about their relationship as of yet so not sure if I ship it yet. We did get a female/female romance in here though which I appreciated. They are some seriously minor characters though so I hope to see some other queer elements later on.
  • The ending was fine without being amazing. I’m not sure it gave that many answers (who the hell is that Crow-guy?!?) but instead worked to set us up for the third book.

There you have my thoughts on The Exiled Queen which I hope you either found entertaining or insightful. Maybe not, but still, let’s chat in the comments if you’ve read it. What did you think of this second installment in the Seven Realms?

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Posted in WWW Wednesday

WWW Wednesday – February 5th 2020

“Lieutenant Mac Gillen of the Queen’s Guard of the Fells hunched his shoulders against the witch wind that howled out of the frozen wastelands to the north and west.”

First line in The Exiled Queen by Cinda Williams Chima

Hi, guys. It’s Wednesday! Here you have my weekly update on my reading through WWW Wednesday. It’s a weekly meme hosted by Sam @ Taking on a World of Words, and it’s meant to give you all a little insight into my reading this week. I’ll answer the 3 questions:

  • What are you currently reading?
  • What did you recently finish?
  • What do you think you’ll read next

What did you recently finish?

Just before writing this, I finished The Exiled Queen by Cinda Williams Chima. That was book 2 in the Seven Realms series and I really enjoyed it, which resulted in a 4-star rating. I think it was a step up from book 1. The character work was better and the plot was clearer and more engaging. I will have a review and spoiler talk up for it very soon. Can’t wait to read book 3. 

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What are you currently reading?

I’m reading Words of Radiance by Brandon Sanderson!! I finally got the second part of this book from the library. I’ve read a little more than 100 pages of that and my jaw has already hit the floor several times. I can’t believe this book. I’m about to read part 4 and yeah, things are getting intense. 

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Quick mention: Last week I mentioned that I was reading Master of Sorrows by Justin Call. I’ve read 50 pages since then and I’m still not digging it so I’ve put it aside for now. Not DNF’ing it but taking a break. 

What do you think you’ll read next?

Another book I also finally got from the library (as an ebook): Autoboyography by Christina Lauren. I will actually start this immediately. 

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Posted in Wrap up

January Reading Wrap Up

“There is a pirate in the basement.”

First line in The Starless Sea by Erin Morgenstern

Hi, guys. January is over so here you get the wrap up of the reading I did this past month. January always feels like the longest month of year to me. I’ve been telling myself that we’re close to February since the 7th. However, I did read some amazing books this month so that sort of made up for it. In fact, I’m 99% sure I’ve already read my favorite book of the year. I hope something even better comes along of course but a high bar has been set already in January. The other 4 books I read this month were also good as my lowest rating was 3 stars. 
Before we get into the mini-review part, I just want to mention that I spent a large part of the month reading Words of Radiance by Brandon Sanderson. However, as that book is so long a.k.a I didn’t finish it this month, it won’t appear in this wrap up. It will for sure be in my February wrap up though. 

The Starless Sea

Author: Erin Morgenstern

Published: November 5th 2019

Genre: Fantasy

My rating: 5 stars!!

Buzzwords: book about books, secret libraries, whimsical storytelling

Synopsis: Zachary Ezra Rawlins is a graduate student in Vermont when he discovers a mysterious book hidden in the stacks. As he turns the pages, entranced by tales of lovelorn prisoners, key collectors, and nameless acolytes, he reads something strange: a story from his own childhood. Bewildered by this inexplicable book and desperate to make sense of how his own life came to be recorded, Zachary uncovers a series of clues — a bee, a key, and a sword — that lead him to a masquerade party in New York, to a secret club, and through a doorway to an ancient library, hidden far below the surface of the earth.

What Zachary finds in this curious place is more than just a buried home for books and their guardians — it is a place of lost cities and seas, lovers who pass notes under doors and across time, and of stories whispered by the dead. Zachary learns of those who have sacrificed much to protect this realm, relinquishing their sight and their tongues to preserve this archive, and also those who are intent on its destruction.

Together with Mirabel, a fierce, pink-haired protector of the place, and Dorian, a handsome, barefoot man with shifting alliances, Zachary travels the twisting tunnels, darkened stairwells, crowded ballrooms, and sweetly-soaked shores of this magical world, discovering his purpose–in both the mysterious book and in his own life.

Goodreads

My thoughts

Holy shit…this book is magical in a way I never thought a book could be. It quite literally takes you down the rabbit hole to a world of beautifully woven stories and doors that lead to new adventures. The sheer imagination and creative storytelling in this book leaves me wanting to give a standing round of applause to Erin Morgenstern.

I really like the main character, Zachary. It’s very much emphasized that he is a reader but also a gamer. I feel that’s pretty rare in books to have a main character who is interested in both but with Zachary it seemed so natural. However, the reading aspect is definitely the main focus. There were so many sentences that I felt were written directly to those of us who are addicted to books. And they hit home. I think I was smiling half the time while reading this book because it was all so relatable. Also, quite unique ones that weren’t your typical “Oh, you can never have too many books”-kind of comments.

I truly loved reading this book and I was so sad when it was over. It’s a book for you if you love books about books and don’t mind that it gets a little abstract sometimes. Not everything makes sense and not everything will be explained to you, but if you don’t mind that I think this is a must read. I will definitely be rereading it soon.

Pumpkinheads

Author: Rainbow Rowell

Illustrator: Faith Erin Hicks

Published: August 27th 2019

Genre: YA Contemporary

My rating: 4 stars

Buzzwords: Graphic novel, friendship, Halloween

Synopsis: Deja and Josiah are seasonal best friends.

Every autumn, all through high school, they’ve worked together at the best pumpkin patch in the whole wide world. (Not many people know that the best pumpkin patch in the whole wide world is in Omaha, Nebraska, but it definitely is.) They say good-bye every Halloween, and they’re reunited every September 1.

But this Halloween is different—Josiah and Deja are finally seniors, and this is their last season at the pumpkin patch. Their last shift together. Their last good-bye.

Josiah’s ready to spend the whole night feeling melancholy about it. Deja isn’t ready to let him. She’s got a plan: What if—instead of moping and the usual slinging lima beans down at the Succotash Hut—they went out with a bang? They could see all the sights! Taste all the snacks! And Josiah could finally talk to that cute girl he’s been mooning over for three years . . .

What if their last shift was an adventure?

Goodreads

My thoughts

This was so sweet and fun. I loved the friendship banter between Josiah and Deja. It really made their connection feel real right from the start. Almost from their first interaction, I had no doubt about them being best friends. It was such a joy to read about.

I gave this 4 stars but don’t take that too much to heart. I considered not rating it because this is my first ever graphic novel and I’m not sure how to rate those. I don’t really have anything to compare it to but I know that I loved reading it. I now understand why people read these during readthons. I got through that so damn fast. Probably not my last graphic novel.

Norse Mythology

Author: Neil Gaiman

Published: February 7th 2017

Genre: Mythology

My rating: No rating

Buzzwords: Mythology-nerdness, Thor and Loki, short stories

Synopsis: Introducing an instant classic—master storyteller Neil Gaiman presents a dazzling version of the great Norse myths.Neil Gaiman has long been inspired by ancient mythology in creating the fantastical realms of his fiction. Now he turns his attention back to the source, presenting a bravura rendition of the great northern tales. In Norse Mythology, Gaiman fashions primeval stories into a novelistic arc that begins with the genesis of the legendary nine worlds; delves into the exploits of the deities, dwarves, and giants; and culminates in Ragnarok, the twilight of the gods and the rebirth of a new time and people. Gaiman stays true to the myths while vividly reincarnating Odin, the highest of the high, wise, daring, and cunning; Thor, Odin’s son, incredibly strong yet not the wisest of gods; and Loki, the son of giants, a trickster and unsurpassable manipulator. From Gaiman’s deft and witty prose emerges the gods with their fiercely competitive natures, their susceptibility to being duped and to dupe others, and their tendency to let passion ignite their actions, making these long-ago myths breathe pungent life again.

Goodreads

My thoughts

This book was fun and weird at the same time which, I guess, is sort of a trademark for Neil Gaiman. The weird part for me was reading these stories in a book by a very popular author. I’ve learned about these myths in school to an excessive extent so it’s quite surreal that someone like Gaiman loves them so much.

However, I’ve decided not to give this book a rating because I’m not sure what to judge. I mean, Gaiman didn’t come up with the stories. He’s just collected them. He also didn’t change anything major about them. That’s not criticism of any kind but it doesn’t feel fair to give a rating. These are simply stories from Norse mythology which I would recommend if you’re interested in those.

The Demon King (Book 1 in Seven Realms)

Author: Cinda Williams Chima

Published: October 6th 2009

Genre: YA Fantasy

My rating: 3 stars

Buzzwords: Old-school YA, a rebellious princess, political intrigue

Synopsis: Times are hard in the mountain city of Fellsmarch. Reformed thief Han Alister will do almost anything to eke out a living for his family. The only thing of value he has is something he can’t sell—the thick silver cuffs he’s worn since birth. They’re clearly magicked—as he grows, they grow, and he’s never been able to get them off.

One day, Han and his clan friend, Dancer, confront three young wizards setting fire to the sacred mountain of Hanalea. Han takes an amulet from Micah Bayar, son of the High Wizard, to keep him from using it against them. Soon Han learns that the amulet has an evil history—it once belonged to the Demon King, the wizard who nearly destroyed the world a millennium ago. With a magical piece that powerful at stake, Han knows that the Bayars will stop at nothing to get it back.

Meanwhile, Raisa ana’Marianna, princess heir of the Fells, has her own battles to fight. She’s just returned to court after three years of freedom in the mountains—riding, hunting, and working the famous clan markets. Raisa wants to be more than an ornament in a glittering cage. She aspires to be like Hanalea—the legendary warrior queen who killed the Demon King and saved the world. But her mother has other plans for her…

The Seven Realms tremble when the lives of Hans and Raisa collide, fanning the flames of the smoldering war between clans and wizards.

Goodreads

My thoughts

I don’t want to say much about this as I have a review and spoiler talk up for it. It’s a book I really enjoyed although my rating is only 3 stars. My enjoyment was more of the “I see a lot of potential here” kind. So that means I have great hopes for the rest of the series although this one had some flaws. 

Peter Pan

Author: J. M. Barrie

Published: December 27th 1904

Genre: Childrens Classic

My rating: 3 stars

Buzzwords: classic, original story

Synopsis: One starry night, Peter Pan and Tinker Bell lead the three Darling children over the rooftops of London and away to Neverland – the island where lost boys play, mermaids splash and fairies make mischief. But a villainous-looking gang of pirates lurk in the docks, led by the terrifying Captain James Hook. Magic and excitement are in the air, but if Captain Hook has his way, before long, someone will be walking the plank and swimming with the crocodiles…

Goodreads

My thoughts

I don’t have much to say about this. It wasn’t a spectacular thing for me but I’m still glad I read it. At least because it’ll be more fun for me to read all the retellings now. Please recommend me some if you know any because I’m REALLY interested in those.

The book itself is something I’ll only recommend if you’re really into Peter Pan. Then you’ll probably love it. If you’re only semi-interested, it recommend just watching the movie (from 2003) because it’s better than the book, and it added some more interesting aspects to the story.

That was it for my reading in January. If it wasn’t clear… that favorite book I was talkning about in the beginning was The Starless Sea and I’m not going to stop talking about it for the rest of the year.

I hope your month was great too. Let me know your favorite of the month in the comments. 

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Posted in WWW Wednesday

WWW Wednesday – January 29th 2020

“All children, expect one, grow up.

First line in Peter Pan by J. M. Barrie

It’s Wednesday! Here you have my weekly update on my reading through WWW Wednesday. It’s a weekly meme hosted by Sam @ Taking on a World of Words, and it’s meant to give you all a little insight into my reading this week. I’ll answer the 3 questions:

  • What are you currently reading?
  • What did you recently finish?
  • What do you think you’ll read next

What did you recently finish?

The Demon King by Cinda Williams Chima. I ended up giving it 3 stars and if you want to know more about my thoughts, I have a review and spoiler talk up for it. 

Peter Pan by J. M. Barrie which I also gave 3 stars. Not exactly mind-blowing, but I really like the story of Peter Pan so I’m still glad I read it. 

What are you currently reading?

After finishing The Demon King, I picked up the second book in the series, The Exiled Queen. I might end up reading this series very fast because, honestly, I’m addicted. We’re getting more of the world in this one and at the same time, it’s non-stop action. It’s very difficult for me to stop reading when I have to. 

It’s a good thing that I love The Exiled Queen so much because my other read is… not so great. It’s Master of Sorrows by Justin Travis Call. I’m 90 pages in but I feel like I’ve been reading for forever. It is such a slow start and I’m grasping for the tiniest hint of a plot but so far there hasn’t been one. The info-dumps also makes my mind wander and I have to reread parts because I missed something. It’s a struggle. The cover is so beautiful though.

What do you think you’ll read next?

Technically not a new book but I got Words of Radiance part 2 from the library, so I can finally finish it!

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Posted in Book Review

Book Review and Spoiler Talk: The Demon King by Cinda Williams Chima

“Han Alister squatted next to the steaming mud spring, praying that the thermal crust would hold his weight.”

First line in The Demon King by Cinda Williams Chima

Hi, guys and welcome to my post about The Demon King by Cinda Williams Chima. I hesitate calling this a review because it’s more or less just going to be a spew of thoughts from me. When I started writing it, I realized that most of what I wanted to talk about was quite spoilery. Therefore this post is going to feature a small non-spoilery section about my overall feelings about the book and then a spoiler section with some random thoughts I had while reading.

Author: Cinda Williams Chima

Published: October 6th 2009

Genre:YA Fantasy

Series: Seven Realms, Book 1

My rating: 3 stars

Synopsis: Times are hard in the mountain city of Fellsmarch. Reformed thief Han Alister will do almost anything to eke out a living for his family. The only thing of value he has is something he can’t sell—the thick silver cuffs he’s worn since birth. They’re clearly magicked—as he grows, they grow, and he’s never been able to get them off.

One day, Han and his clan friend, Dancer, confront three young wizards setting fire to the sacred mountain of Hanalea. Han takes an amulet from Micah Bayar, son of the High Wizard, to keep him from using it against them. Soon Han learns that the amulet has an evil history—it once belonged to the Demon King, the wizard who nearly destroyed the world a millennium ago. With a magical piece that powerful at stake, Han knows that the Bayars will stop at nothing to get it back.

Meanwhile, Raisa ana’Marianna, princess heir of the Fells, has her own battles to fight. She’s just returned to court after three years of freedom in the mountains—riding, hunting, and working the famous clan markets. Raisa wants to be more than an ornament in a glittering cage. She aspires to be like Hanalea—the legendary warrior queen who killed the Demon King and saved the world. But her mother has other plans for her…

The Seven Realms tremble when the lives of Hans and Raisa collide, fanning the flames of the smoldering war between clans and wizards.

Goodreads

Spoiler-free Review

The Demon King had been on my TBR almost a year and on my mind even longer before I decided to pick it up. I was afraid that it would be too old. YA fantasy is a fast changing genre and tropes are easily overused. However, I kept hearing or reading positive reviews for this series so I decided to read it, keeping in mind that it’s from 2009.

I ended up with some conflicting emotions but my overall feeling was positive. Yes, there are tropes we’ve seen before (a lot) and not everything made perfect sense. Somehow that didn’t affect my reading experience very much. I loved reading it! The world and the political landscape were quite intriguing to me and I got the sense that those will be explored even further in the next books. It was very much a book with a lot of set-up. The plot was barely there and you don’t really see it until the end. I don’t mind books without plot because I love to just learn about the characters and the world. To someone else, this first book might be a tough start to the series.

About the characters… well, there’s potential at least. The only character I really latched on to was Dancer and he’s barely there. He seems to have a very interesting story that we don’t know very much about. The other characters were all right but nothing spectacular. The female MC is very close to slipping into the “not like other girls” trope but I think she just steers clear. The male MC was a little bit all over the place in this first book. Like he was trying to be several characters at once. But as I said, there’s great potential for some character growth in the next books.

Spoiler Thoughts

Stop reading if you don’t want to read SPOILERS! I’ve made a list of all the random thoughts I had while reading.

  • Dancer is so intriguing! He seems to have so many layers that I can’t wait to learn more about in the next books. Also, as far as I understood, his mother was raped and he came from that? I was quite shocked by that because that’s pretty gruesome for YA.
  • The parts of the book that takes place in Marisa Pines were definitely my favorites. I found the whole clan thing and that culture very interesting.
  • How many love interests does Raisa need? I mean, wouldn’t one be enough? How is three necessary? I liked her relationship with Micah in the beginning. Not because it was perfect, but because there was so much obvious possible growth in both characters through that. I also enjoyed that it was more playful instead of serious which I think is rare for me to find in YA fantasy. However, I guess he’s off the table now that his father tried to force Raisa into a marriage with Micah. That’s got to be a dealbreaker.
  • We’re also introduced to Amon, the second love interest. When you compare him to Micah (which you sort of have to), he’s just so… boring. He’s very much the stereotypical “nice guy” who values honor and all that. I’m going to say that there’s room for him to grow too but please don’t let Raisa end up with him.
  • Is Han also a love interest? I’m not sure what to make of their interactions. I didn’t like his relationship with Bird. I was so happy when they were prophesized to not work together.
  • “*character* seemed to know what *other character* was thinking”. I’ve read this too many times! I need there to be a plot twist in the next books explaining how every character in this series is a mind reader.
  • They actually killed Han’s family?!? I mean, I appreciate the whole “actions have consequences” that it represents but damn… that’s dark.
  • I’m not sure what I think of Han. I have trouble piecing his character together because he has so many sides and some of them are a bit contradicting. How can someone become a streetlord at 15 and at the same time be so slow to piece stuff together? That guy doesn’t see anything coming! I guess we have another character with room to grow.

That was my post about The Demon King with a little bit of everything. Let me know what you think about this book if you’ve read or plan to read it. I’m going to be reading the second book very soon and plan to do a similar post about that one. Until then, I hope you’re having a great reading life.

Posted in First Impression Friday

First Impression Friday – The Demon King by Cinda Williams Chima

“The scent of wood smoke and roses always took him back there, to the boy he was and would never be again.”

First line in The Warrior Heir by Cinda Williams Chima

Hi, guys and welcome to a First Impression Friday post. I haven’t done one in a while but First Impression Friday is a weekly meme created by J.W. Martin and is an oppourtunity to talk about a book you’ve just started. I’m going to talk about The Demon King by Cinda Williams Chima (finally!!).

I’m reading it as an ebook, and I’m 16% into it meaning I’m almost done with chapter 4. I’m really liking it so far, especially the characters. That Dancer character has some secrets and I’m so intrigued to know what they are. I’m a little worried that the female main character is going for that “not like other girls”-trope. However, she has also shown some surprising aspects of her character so I remain hopeful.

On the negative side is the world building. I’m confused. So many names have been thrown around and I’m just sitting here like… “where’s my map?”. There’s also a lot a culture involved already and I’m struggling a little to keep everything straight in my head.

In general though, my first impression is quite positive. I was a little scared because this is a YA fantasy book from 2009. Those tend not to age well, but I haven’t encountered any problems or overused cliches so far.

This is a book that featured on my 5-star predictions list and so far it still belongs there.

I hope you found this little insight interesting. I look forward to sharing my final thoughts of the book with you all. Have a great weekend!