Friday, May 18, 2018

Review of Children of Blood & Bone-Tomi Adeyemi

This was a refreshing take on a fantasy world, influenced by Nigerian folktales and creation stories.  The main character, Zelie, is complex and compelling; her brother, Tzain, is conflicted but heroic.  The other two main characters are the brother and sister of an evil monarch who is determined to wipe out magic and people like Zelie who can use and control magic.  On the run with Zelie and Tzain, the sister, Amari, is already sympathetic to the maji and her brother Inan, against all his upbringing, is slowly coming around to saving magic in the realm.  But his father, the king, is in hot pursuit and nothing will stand in his way, including his children.  3 Elves - Recommended for teens and adults

Saturday, February 10, 2018

Review of Girls Made of Snow & Glass-Melissa Bashardoust

This debut fantasy novel is a retelling of the fairy tale Snow White but with many twists and turns.  A young girl who becomes a queen has a heart made of glass so she is afraid she can never love or be loved.  She cares greatly for her stepdaughter, the princess, who was made of snow by the queen's magician father.  Both the queen and the princess must find out who they really are, hoping the truth will free them from their own fears and the opinion of others in the kingdom.  3 Elves - Recommended for teens and adults

Monday, January 29, 2018

Review of Frostblood-Elly Blake

This fantasy, the first in a series, reminds me of the Red Queen series by Victoria Aveyard.  They both have a ruling class that is trying to suppress citizens that have magical powers not as strong as the rulers.  Ruby is a Fireblood who has hidden her extraordinary powers from the Frostbloods but when she is discovered, she's thrown into prison.  Her journey to freedom and helping rebels try to  overcome the ruling class is thrilling.  3 Elves - Recommended for teens and adults

Friday, December 29, 2017

Review of Future Home of the Living God-Louise Erdrich

This dystopian novel by the acclaimed author will remind you of The Handmaid's Tale but with a Native American angle.  The world has gone into a future shock mode, with the environment out of control; normal childbirth is rare so the government captures women, especially pregnant women, to either breed them or monitor their pregnancy.  If the baby survives, the child is taken away and the mother impregnated to give birth again.  Cedar is just trying to survive capture in a world gone mad and safely have her baby, with the help of her adoptive, liberal parents and her Native American family.  Haunting.  4 Elves-Highly recommended for adults and mature teens

Sunday, December 10, 2017

Review of Jane, Unlimited-Kristin Cashore

I adored her Graceling Realm epic fantasies so I was curious to read her latest novel.  This book is a fantasy but not like any I've ever read.  When Jane loses her beloved Aunt Magnolia, she remembers that her aunt told her to never turn down an invitation to an island estate called Tu Reviens.  From the moment she lands on the island, her reality is turned upside down as she is offered five choices for her future.  The book is surprising throughout, especially the ending.  3 Elves - Recommended for mature teens and adults

Monday, December 4, 2017

Review of The Rules of Magic-Alice Hoffman

This prequel to Practical Magic is delightful.  Three siblings, witches all, are protected from magic by their mother; they are told to avoid black cats, red shoes, wearing black and walking in the moonlight.  But when they are forced to live with their aunt, all of the rules change and they are told to embrace their magic.  The only rule left is to not fall in love; because of the curse, it will end in tragedy.  Of course, avoiding love is easier said than done, and this novel follows the course of love for Franny, Jet & Vincent.  All of the characters are complex and wonderful, and you find yourself hoping that they can break the curse.  4 Elves - Highly recommended for mature teen and adults

Thursday, September 21, 2017

Review of Shadowcaster-Cinda Williams Chima

Cinda Williams Chima is one of my favorite epic fantasy authors.  I'm never disappointed in the worlds and characters she creates and I always look forward to her novels, whether a new book or a sequel.  Her latest in the Shattered Realms series continues the story of warrior Princes Alyssa and her struggle to help end the war that has raged her whole life, taking beloved family members and keeping her from living a life without strife & heartbreak.  When an enemy captain is captured, she wants to hate him but can't help but admire & desire him instead.  This book has everything: magic, a dragon and wonderful characters.  4 Elves - Highly recommended for teens and adults