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The Alloy of Law (Mistborn 4) by Brandon Sanderson!

The Alloy of Law (Mistborn, #4)The Alloy of Law by Brandon Sanderson

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

“…I shot the guy who took your hat, though he lived. He’s probably gone by now.”
“you didn’t grab the hat for me?” Wayne asked, sounding offended.
“I was a little busy being shot at.”
“Busy? Aw, mate. It doesn’t take any effort at all to get shot at. I think you’re just makin’ excuses on account of being jealous of my lucky hat.”

I was kind of scared picking this one up just because of the nostalgia factor. Like I was just discussing with a friend, most books fall into second-book syndrome and yet this was the first book in the second series. How in the world would it live up to the place the original trilogy has in all of our hearts? But as the quote above suggested, I didn’t need to worry. If nothing else, this book is a promised fun ride.
For me, the selling factor of a book (or any work of fiction) is always its characters and their relationships. And I always appreciate when the author is thoughtful enough to understand that relationships don’t always fall in the romantic category. And that’s what Sanderson focused most on this book. Wax and Wayne are two friends, an adorable duo with tons of history and lots of wits. Their friendship just shines on the page. The way they seem to understand each other and the way they care for each other without showing it, that’s just plain beautiful.
And how could I forget to mention the brilliant Marasi? She is just so endearing of a character. The fact that she had queer interests but was still unapologetic of staying feminine was the selling factor. I am tired of girl characters who believe mimicking guys would make them more feminist. She was a breath of fresh air.
I also enjoyed the mention of previous characters. The funniest part was, though they used to be all friends and had worked together, nowadays the sects following them are so rigid and differentiated from each other. It’s fun to see how that branched out. The only problem was I was having a hard time understanding which religion was a follower of which character?
Elendel has become quite an interesting place as well. What with trains and the introduction of electricity. This whole book is just so brilliant and filled with nostalgia, it makes me want to cry.

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A Conjuring of Light (Shades of Magic 3) by V.E Schwab

A Conjuring of Light (Shades of Magic, #3)A Conjuring of Light by V.E. Schwab
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Take all the stars from me, Schwab, you deserve them for creating this masterpiece for us. It’s always good to see a writer growing with each book, and for Schwab, the change is more prominent. The first book in this trilogy had so much promise, yet turned so little stones. Ever since being introduced to this world (by a booktube channel btw) I had been in awe from the concept and the premise. When I found the book and started reading it, the magical world and her amazing writing style pulled me in so much, I forgot everything else that was happening in my life and finished that one in a single sitting.
But once done, I felt so frustrated. I needed more of Red London and Kell. As if Schwab had read my mind, the second book came which had nothing but Red London–not as much Kell as I would like, though.
And I finished that again with feeling that so many stones were left unturned. While hyping over the release of this book, I feared I will end up finishing this one the same way. But turned out I shouldn’t have worried.
Every character, from major to minor, were given their due time. All the backstories unraveled. While keeping the pace thrilling, I am in awe how the author managed that.
Kell had always been my favorite, from the moment he was introduced. Lila had a tendency to keep getting better and better by each scene. Alucard was a cool character when introduce, but turned out to have so much depth in him. I was close to tears at one point for him. And for Rhy, and unpopular opinion here. I was annoyyed by him in the first book, but then he kept growing on me. Until by the climax, he was the one I was most pained for. Most rooting for.
And a moment of silence for the king and queen please. I mean, I haven’t seen a single YA book putting so much weight on the parental characters. Previous book in this series also had merely touch on the corners of their character. Kind of decoration pieces just for display. But in this one, I can’t even begin to describe how happy and in awe I am by the justice done to their character.
This is the kind of book where a reader is pained at the death of even trivial characters. Because the death was carved out from the ones left living. The emptiness always left inside them, a hollow that kept ringing in every word so that a reader had to feel it.
The plot was amazingly built. Without missing a beat. From the moment the book started, it felt like a climatic sequence. That was the measure of intensity. The climax was epic. The action scenes was thrilling to the bone. The adventurous feel was just amazing.
As you can all see, the whole review has been me madly gushing over the book. Some might be even rolling their eyes– surely there has to be some weakness in the book. And certainly there is, one tiny one.
IT ENDED!
Gosh I don’t want it to end. Don’t know what to do with my life anymore. Please Schwab, fill the void soon or my life will be left miserable forever.
Okay now I have turned into rambling so should take my leave.
P.S a full spoilery thought post is cooming soon in my blog. Shameless marketing over, time to leave the review for those brave enough to read it.

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A Torch Against the Night by Sabaa Tahir!

A Torch Against the Night (An Ember in the Ashes, #2)A Torch Against the Night by Sabaa Tahir

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I had read the last book quite a while ago. It ended in a cliffhanger and I was weary of picking this one up without a reread. Fearing that the story might get confusing, but Tahir took off where she left the last book without missing a beat. While recounting the events from last one in a manner that didn’t fall either in confusing or boring zone. So kudos for that achievement.
I have to say, though, that the middle was slightly sagging. Not the pace, it was a thrilling ride until the end. But if felt slightly off the mark, as compared to the awesomeness of overall series. It was a tightrope battle of 3-4 stars. But then, the third act happened, and all hell broke loose. I was literally at the edge of my seat the whole while reading that part. And might have been slightly snappy towards anyone who tried to drag me out of the magical world I was in and back to the reality.
I can’t say much about the plot without spoiling anything. What I can say is the character development was on point. I really like even the coolest characters in this series are so grounded in reality. So prone to mistakes, so vulnerable. At the middle though, I had gotten really frustrated from all the love-triangle drama. All I wanted was one action sequence where Keenan and Elias worked as allies, both of them are such cool fighters. Was it too much to ask?
I also appreciated Tahir’s teasing with the topics of pain and death. The overall tone of this story is bleak and dark. And the way death is approached feels too real, it’s painful yet wonderful to read.
There was a huge build-up towards one plot-twist. I saw it coming miles away, though, but somehow it managed to pack a surprising punch.
This book didn’t end on a cliffhanger like the last one, but still had enough going on that I just can’t wait to get my hands on the next one. I need it, now!
Especially considering the point it ended. Filled with so much hope, yet so much hopelessness at the same time. I am not sure how the author manages it, creating so many conflicting emotions in a reader in the same time.

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Warbreaker by Brandon Sanderson!

Warbreaker (Warbreaker, #1)Warbreaker by Brandon Sanderson

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

As always, Sanderson proved himself master of characterization and plot twists. So many remarkable memorable characters popped up throughout the story to count. From Vasher to Lightsong, each and every one of them had a unique voice and added an interesting flavor to the pot.
The story follows two kingdoms at the brink of war. A shaky peace treaty keeping the war at bay, but a single mistake from one of the king starts the spiral of events that is the whole novel. The treaty was to marry his eldest daughter to the other king when she came of age, but the king sends his other daughter instead. I kept waiting for a more plausible explanation as to why the king made the decision, sadly that never happened.
But from then, the spiral of events kept me hooked and breathless with their brilliance.
The story followed multiple POVs and all the elements of fantasy a fan would enjoy, yet the colorful magic system made it a breath of fresh air. To add icing on the cake, a huge chunk of the story was filled with politics and court drama. With the unique style of Sanderson, it felt way fresher and more interesting.
I didn’t personally enjoyed Blushweaver’s character, though her contribution to making Lightsong as beloved as he was can’t be denied. Their maturish bickering was the highlight of the show.

“Lightsong!” she said. “One could say you begin to sound jealous!”
“One could also say that my feet smell like guava fruit,” he said. “Just because could say it doesn’t mean it’s relevant.”

I have seen a lot of mixed opinions about Vivenna, the princess who was supposed to marry the king but her sister got sacrificed instead. I personally really loved her character development. To be honest, I used to roll my eyes at the beginning at the description of her perfection. Thankfully, as the story unfolded she became getting more and more grounded. Making mistakes and trying to redeem them.
I really enjoyed and will always miss her time with the mercenaries.
I pat myself on the back for always seeing Vasher as a nice gray character instead of bad-guy. :3
I updated a status right when I started this book that I was loving this guy and stood true until the end.

Vasher had always found it interesting that the men who watched dungeons tended to be as bad as, or worse than, the men they guarded. Perhaps that was deliberate. Society didn’t seem to care if such men were outside the cells or in them, so long as they were kept away from honest men.

Seriously, what’s there not to like?
Other than him, all the plot-twists and betrayals left be flabbergasted.
This is the first book by Sanderson I finished after the masterpiece: the original Mistborn trilogy. Though this book is far behind the brilliance of that book, I’ve got to say, the characters were way more well-rounded and gray in this one.
The villain’s and hero’s motivations overlapped more and the thematic questions were stronger.
Overall this one is a strong read which I will always miss. 😀

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Rebel of the Sands by Alwyn Hamilton!

Rebel of the Sands (Rebel of the Sands, #1)Rebel of the Sands by Alwyn Hamilton

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

This is the book I have the most mixed feelings about in recent past. While I enjoyed the setting, it felt too forcefully dark. I liked the character, but again the female lead felt too much cliched. The plot was fast-paced, but also cliche ridden.
The magic system was something new, and I adored it. But the final battle felt too rushed. I still haven’t understood much of what happened in the end.
All in all, it’s a good light read, but the author has potential and I am curious to see where she will take it in future installments.

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Traitor’s Blade (Greatcoats #1) by Sebastian de Castell

Traitor's Blade (Greatcoats, #1)Traitor’s Blade by Sebastien de Castell

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Greatcoats are the magisters by the king’s law. His personal army of sorts. Their job is to travel all around the nation and pass on judgements based on the laws. Falcio, the protagonist, is one of the greatest and closest to the king.
When one day, the kingdom is sieged and the king is assassinated. Now, the world is being ruled by the Dukes and the law is in tatters, and the greatcoats are considered traitors.
Falcio, among the others in the army, has been given by a final order from the king. To find a chariot and somehow that will help the nation get it’s footing back.
Along with his two greatcoat companions, Kest and Bastri, he’s in a journey at the beginning of the novel. To find the glory that has lost to their kingdom. Great adventures await in this book after that.
The best part about this novel is characterization. Falcio has a dark past and is haunted by that, but that doesn’t let his spot on humor fade. The different personalities of the three main characters, and the amusing first person lenses with which we get to see the world in. The story was a delight to read even in all its dark story.

The three of us invented ‘punch-pull-slap’ some time ago. One of the things you discover after you’ve been wounded enough times is that the body really only keeps track of one source of pain at a time. So, for example, if your tooth hurts and someone pokes you ine the stomach, your body momentarily forgets about the tooth.
So, the way this is supposed to work is like this: Brasti punches me in the face, Kest pulls the arrow out of my legand then Brasti slaps me so hard my brain never has time to register the bolt and therefore I don’t scream at the top of my lungs.

The story is packed with beat-by-beat fight scenes. And the action is too much fun to read. The characters have a really dark humor, making it even more amusing.

“I’m bored.” Brasti said. ‘Is there any way I could possibly just kill you now and then we could go and– I don’t know– play games with your head?’
‘I don’t think you would have much fun tossing my head around like a ball, Trattari. Trust me, I’ve triedit more than once and even a traitor’s head just gets soggy after a while.”

The one problem I did had with the book was the rushed ending. Too many things happened too quickly to even digest, that’s why it took me so long to review. I just didn’t understood all that happened all at once in the end.
The story overall had an extremely fast pace as well. We don’t get to see much of the world, and the glimpses at the backstory are sparse as well. Though the whole picture of Falcio’s journey to where he is now gets clear with time, the world still remains vague and felt unexplored.
But all in all, it’s a great start in a great new fantasy series. And I am definitely going to continue on with this one and will highly recommend it to others as well.
Here’s too hoping that the world get more screen time in the next book. (since I read digital copies, this metaphor turns out to fit perfectly. 😉 )

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Heartless by Marissa Meyer

HeartlessHeartless by Marissa Meyer

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Although I haven’t watched or read the original Alice in Wonderland, and I am kinda newbie to this world. The retelling of the origin story of its main villain, queen of hearts, is just perfect without all that background knowledge.
We get to see the world through the eyes of a simple, cute girl, with simple dreams. But fate has more in store for her. An opportunity to become a queen isn’t exactly what she had hoped for her life. Instead, her dream was to open a bakery and live a life full of wonder and fulfillment. The way everything else plays out against her and the inevitable fate of becoming the queen of hearts press on her. Closing all other doors, one by one, Meyer does a great job of making her journey heart-touching and tragic.
The poor parental role, the seemingly beautiful but actually frustrating society. All going against her. It was a heart-touching and frustrating journey all at once. The hatred I felt for most of the characters was real.
The story seemed sagging at the middle, but the beginning was interesting and the end was just as brutal as the origin story of her ought to have been.
The only thing that frustrated me to no end was the role of the king. He seemed such a cardboard character. Even though his idiocy was showed intentionally, I had a hard time swallowing this character. And the character of her parents was pretty frustrating too. Though that was part of the story, but for peoples these days, they are kind of hard to even bear in a story.
The romantic interest was amazing as well. Jest is the kind of character that was easy to like and relate with. His backstory and characterization had the depth that I feel so much missing in the heroes these days.
Overall, a good story that I loved and adored at times, and hated because of the things happening inside it on others. That’s how Meyer made me feel, the story was active in adrenaline department as well. Kind of a nice breather for the author after the whole madness of Lunar chronicles.

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A Shadow in Summer by Daniel Abraham

A Shadow in Summer (Long Price Quartet, #1)A Shadow in Summer by Daniel Abraham

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

I gave this book a three star mostly because it was a hard pill to swallow than the fact that it had anything to do with me not liking it. The book had an addictive but sometimes hard-to-follow writing style. And the names would overlap in my mind oftentimes. But other than that, there were a lot of things that I loved about this book.
It had a really addicting writing style, and the characterization and world-building were also well developed and interesting.
There were so many memorable characters in this book. Otah, Maati, and the old woman whose name I don’t remember.
Then again, I couldn’t quite relate to the plot. It felt everything was being overly dramatized while nothing much happening.
The story is basically about the world, where the magicians are known as poets and they can bind some arbitrary–not much explained being into human forms like regular poets bind ideas into words. The resulting creature looks like humans but have some powers and are called andats. One poet bound his self-loathing into a creature, and the resulting being had the ability to remove seeds from anything magically. But hated his master, the poet.
The trade of the city soars as a result since the andat can remove seeds from kilos of cotton plants in a second. But is planning a treachery to devastate the poet so completely, that he release his andat. The releasing of the andat can also cause the whole city’s economy to perish.
The plot has some good parts but is overly dramatized in a lot of times.
Maybe the next books do change that a bit. As far as I’ve heard, the series get better. And I will keep reading it for such an interesting writing style if nothing else.

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Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo

Six of Crows (Six of Crows, #1)Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

A band of misfits, an anti-hero protagonist, a chance to see a male protagonist in YA after what seems like eons, and last but not least, another chance to revisit Grisha-verse and devour the writing of the queen Leigh Bardugo. If any of these things doesn’t prick anyone’s interest, I don’t know what will.
This is a story of a crew of six thugs. Fighting every day of their lives against impossible odds, and all in desperate need of a fortune. When an opportunity arose, an impossible heist in return of unimaginable fortune. All of them dive in.
The crew has hatred, love, and moments of pure beauty threaded throughout the journey. I cheered and agonized over decisions they made. They made plenty of wrong choices too, which made the experience of reading them way more interesting.
Every POV had a well-grounded voice.
This book is just sheer brilliance, and I will make everyone I can read it. Highly recommended.

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Crown of Midnight by Sarah J. Maas

Crown of Midnight (Throne of Glass, #2)Crown of Midnight by Sarah J. Maas

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I have just completely come to love this series. Though the first part seemed a bit mediocre, albeit promising. All the promises has been fulfilled in this part, and more has been made. For awesome (mis)adventures of all the characters we have came to love.
The best part, I think, was how frustratingly wrong most of these characters have been in most of the book. Especially Nehemia and Chaol comes to mind. How many wrong choices each of them has made. Which just makes the conflict all the more delicious for me.
I had my setbacks while reading this book. But as it drew closer to the end, I realized more and more how masterfully Maas were creating all that feelings inside us. To lead to all the wrong conclusions.
And at first part, I was just mostly annoyed from Calaena. But now, after reading this one. I am liking all of the grayer areas of her personality. And we see way more of her grayness and wrong decisions in this book. Which led to all the more interesting situations.
The world building has really took more strength in this part then the last. And again promised to get all the more vaster and interesting in the next one.
It’s taking me all my will to not grasp the third part and begin devouring it right away. I just feel it won’t be advisable to start a ToG book at 3 AM. lol
Riding on a hype-train after so long feels weird, but I can happily claim the title of being Throne of Glass series fan now.

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