F Is for Friday – May 22nd

F is for Friday is a weekly book blog meme hosted by Lyn at Nomadic Worlds!

F – FEATURE YOUR LATEST BOOK OBSESSION

I recently read Again Again, after waiting for approval on NG for what felt like a century. Though it has some mixed reviews on goodreads, I adored this book. I’d never read anything by E. Lockhart before and it looks like some of their other novels are chick lit, a bit of mystery/thriller. This was a fast, surprising, and raw story about loss, love, and self-discovery. Look for my review of this wonderful book next Tuesday!

From goodreads…

In this novel full of surprises from the New York Times bestselling author of We Were Liars and Genuine Fraud, E. Lockhart ups the ante with an inventive and romantic story about human connection, forgiveness, self-discovery, and possibility.

If you could live your life again, what would you do differently?

After a near-fatal family catastrophe and an unexpected romantic upheaval, Adelaide Buchwald finds herself catapulted into a summer of wild possibility, during which she will fall in and out of love a thousand times—while finally confronting the secrets she keeps, her ideas about love, and the weird grandiosity of the human mind.

A raw, funny story that will surprise you over and over, Again Again gives us an indelible heroine grappling with the terrible and wonderful problem of loving other people. 

I – INDICATE WHICH BOOK/S YOU ARE LOOKING FORWARD TO READING THIS WEEKEND.

I snagged this great title from NetGalley a few weeks ago and I’m slowly working my way through my list of backlogged titles, trying to get back to that coveted 80%. Though this isn’t the cover on NetGalley, I still really like it! I’ve read the first chapter and I think this will be a solid Star Wars story. Look for my review coming out June 30th!

From goodreads…

It’s been a few years since Poe’s mother passed away, and Poe and his father, who was a pilot for the Rebellion, have had more and more trouble connecting. Not sure what he wants to do with his life, teenage Poe runs away from home to find adventure, and to figure out what kind of man he is meant to be.

F – FAVORITE QUOTE OF THE WEEK/DAY

My favorite quotation of the week comes from The Chalice and the Crown by Kassandra Flamouri!

“Something dark, something dangerous has been stalking me from the shadows of sleep and it’s getting closer”

– Sasha

I really loved this book and I think this quotation really captures the essence of the narrative. It’s a dark fantasy set in two worlds, framed by a prima ballerina’s supposed descent into madness. It’s such an interesting concept and I loved it! Check out my review of The Chalice and The Crow by Kassandra Flamouri!

F – FIVE THINGS YOU’RE HAPPY OR GRATEFUL FOR THIS WEEK.

  1. Employment – I’m super grateful that both my husband and I are able to work at our day jobs.
  2. Book Bloggers – I am still fairly new to the book blog scene and there are so many bloggers that have welcomed me to this community! I am grateful for each and every one of you!
  3. New Releases – In the last two weeks, I’ve reviewed so many books that have book birthday’s next week and there are at least 3 on June 2nd! Book birthdays are so fun to celebrate!
  4. Book Mail – Getting a lot of book mail recently and I am so thankful for authors willing to send me print copies of their books to review!
  5. Nonfiction – I love nonfiction and I am so happy to have been able to read some great new releases in nonfiction!

What is your FIFF? Let’s talk about it!

Can’t Wait Wednesday – I Can’t Wait For…Fable by Adrienne Young #CWW

Can’t-Wait Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted at Wishful Endings, to spotlight and discuss the books we’re excited about that we have yet to read. It’s based on Waiting on Wednesday, hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine. These are normally books that have not come out yet!

Welcome to Can’t Wait Wednesday at Book Bustle! This is the first installment of a weekly post featuring a title for which I can’t wait! Today’s selection is….

Fable by Adrienne Young

I was not lucky enough to snag an arc of this title, but I’ve only heard good things about it! It’s a high seas adventure of self-discovery and intrigue! I love a good swashbuckling adventure, but I haven’t had the chance to read one recently. This seems like the novel to satisfy that itch! Also, covers aren’t everything, but this cover is everything!

Synopsis from goodreads

Welcome to a world made dangerous by the sea and by those who wish to profit from it. Where a young girl must find her place andher family while trying to survive in a world built for men.

As the daughter of the most powerful trader in the Narrows, the sea is the only home seventeen-year-old Fable has ever known. It’s been four years since the night she watched her mother drown during an unforgiving storm. The next day her father abandoned her on a legendary island filled with thieves and little food. To survive she must keep to herself, learn to trust no one and rely on the unique skills her mother taught her. The only thing that keeps her going is the goal of getting off the island, finding her father and demanding her rightful place beside him and his crew. To do so Fable enlists the help of a young trader named West to get her off the island and across the Narrows to her father.

But her father’s rivalries and the dangers of his trading enterprise have only multiplied since she last saw him and Fable soon finds that West isn’t who he seems. Together, they will have to survive more than the treacherous storms that haunt the Narrows if they’re going to stay alive.

But her father’s rivalries and the dangers of his trading enterprise have only multiplied since she last saw him and Fable soon finds that West isn’t who he seems. Together, they will have to survive more than the treacherous storms that haunt the Narrows if they’re going to stay alive.

My Thoughts:

The story begins with Fable, the seventeen-year-old daughter of the most notorious trader in the region called ‘The Narrows’, attempting to find her father and re-join his crew. Fable finds herself on a legendary island, four years after the death of her mother at sea. Fable’s father abandoned her on the island with very little food and even less information after her mother’s death. Fable quickly finds that she can trust no one and must fight to survive!

It looks like this will be at least a duology with the second book, Namesake, coming out some time in 2021. Take a look at this cover, also stunning!

I’ve never read a book by this author, but I feel like I need to put her past works on my TBR list. The Sky in the Deep duology looks incredibly interesting and it’s Vikings! Who doesn’t love vikings? I’ll definitely add these to the list (it’s actually a pile).

Fable releases September 1, 2020 from Wednesday books! You can pre-order below and follow the author on social media!

What book are you excited to read that releases later this year? Let’s talk about it in the comments!

PRE-ORDER LINKS
AUTHOR SOCIAL LINKS

Top Ten Tuesday – 10 Reasons Why I Love #Vicious and #Vengeful by V. E. Schwab

Top Ten Tuesday was created by The Broke and the Bookish and is now hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl. Each week a new theme is suggested for bloggers to share their thoughts on book stuff! This week’s theme is Reasons Why I Love (insert your favorite book title, genre, author, etc. here).

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THE COVERS

These covers are so beautiful and on brand. It’s not all about the cover, but you have to admire these. They capture the essence of the books, while not giving too much plot away. My only complaint is that I have a copy of Vicious in paperback and Vengeful in hardback. The physical copies of these books also have a bit of texture on the bones and author’s name. It’s just so aesthetically pleasing all around. Kudos to the author and pub team on these releases!

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VICTOR VALE

Beautiful art from K. Night! Check out their tumblr!

What to say about Victor Vale? There are so many fan art depictions of him and this is by far my favorite, and it’s in a set! See more beautiful artwork below! Victor is complex, layered and oh so broody, without the teenage angst. It’s not an Edward Cullen brood, it’s far more evolved than that. With parents running a self-help empire, and often left alone, Victor found something else to entertain himself: The destruction of other’s words. He takes books, particularly his parent’s books, and uses a sharpie to create a new narrative by marking through words. It’s really a cool idea, kudos to V. E. Schwab for this awesome character quirk! If you haven’t read these books, you really need to. Victor evolves through the narrative, building more layers until he eventually has to break. It’s poetry in narrative format. Remember the name: Victor Vale.

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Eli (Cardale) Ever

More beautiful art from K. Night! Check out their tumblr!

Like Victor, Eli Cardale is a well-built character. As you may or may not know, this series is focused on EOs, people with ExtraOrdinary abilities as a result of an NDE, near death experience. What starts out as a class project in preparation for medical school eventually becomes and obsession for Eli. It’s very Flatliners meets X-Men, but with different twists. Eli is so charismatic and manipulative. Truly Victor and Eli are diametrically opposed, but they are roommates and friends? It makes for intriguing character interactions.

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Mitch & Sydney + Dol

More beautiful art from K. Night! Check out their tumblr!

I couldn’t find anything that I really liked to depict Mitch. Think bouncer, bald, tatooed, super muscled, that’s him. Maybe a little bit Vin, definitely someone you don’t want to mess with. Mitch is a side character, but he is someone you really like once you meet him. A tech savvy strongman? Count me in! I may be a little biased since my husband’s name is Mitchell, but still.

Sydney plays an important role from page one and she quickly became a close second favorite to Victor. We learn a bit about the story and the world through her eyes, but it’s not overly complicated or apparent that you are getting exposition, which is so hard to do! Sydney has a good heart and tempers some of Victor’s emotion throughout the narrative. She loves deeply, which is always something I relate to.

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Style

V. E. Schwab has a way with words that I adore. She uses them like puzzles prices and fits them perfectly together to create beautiful images. This is a sampling of my favorite lines from Vicious:

All Eli had to do was smile. All Victor had to do was lie. Both proved frighteningly effective. 

Schwab, V. E. Vicious. Tor Books, 2013.

Plenty of humans were monstrous, and plenty of monsters knew how to play at being human.

Schwab, V. E. Vicious. Tor Books, 2013.

A couple from Vengeful because I think it’s fun!

Some people were matches, a bit of light and no heat. And some were furnaces, all heat but little light. And then, once in a blue moon, there was a bonfire, something so hot and bright you couldn’t stand too near without burning.

Schwab, V. E. Vengeful. Tor Books, 2018.

Knowledge may be power, but money buys both.

Schwab, V. E. Vengeful. Tor Books, 2018.

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Premise

Pow! Zap! Boom! Vicious is sold as a gritty, comic-bookesque story told in narrative form. Two college roommates with overlapping interests formulate a hypothesis: under the right conditions, a person could develop superhuman abilities. Once this hypothesis is put to the test in the real world, things go predictably wrong.

I loved this premise from the start! I’m not a comic book reader, but I love a good hero/anti-hero story. These books are particularly interesting because almost no one wins in the end. You want a cookie-cutter, happily ever after? These are not the books for you. The plot in both novels pulled me in different directions, I vascilated between thinking one person was right then the other. It was honestly a thrill ride.

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Timeline

Because I’m a sucker for awkwardness, I looked up the 1 star goodreads reviews of both Vicious and Vengeful. Why, you ask? Because I wanted to know if people disliked this book due to the time jumps between chapters. I’m being completely honest here, when I first picked up Vicious after having read all of Shades of Magic, I had high hopes. It was hard to read at first, because I was lost in 10 years ago, last night, yesterday, etc. I gave it a few days and came back to it. This time, I knew what I was in for. I paid much closer attention to the details, the time period I was in, and really that helped so much. This time, I couldn’t put this book down and I actually fell in love with this vignette-sort of style that jumps around in time.

Really, I liked the style once I understood what I was reading. So many reviews say that this was an attempt at a deconstructed super hero novel, but I don’t think that’s entirely accurate. It’s much more of an exploration of that ambiguous, morally grey area that exists in almost every decision we make as humans.

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Character Names

Can I take a moment to appreciate the character names in these books? Victor Vale….. Eli Cardale (later Ever)…. Sydney Clarke…. Mitch Turner…. Doll (this is the dog)…… Serena Clark…..

Automatically I think Victor is the bad boy and he is to an extent, but he’s not your typical bad boy. He is definitely my favorite character. I felt like Eli was a psychopath for most of the book, but really I think he convinced himself that he was on a holy mission (which he absolutely did) and manipulated everyone else to think the way he did. That’s never a good sign for someone on a mission like that. Like I said earlier, I’m just partial to a guy named Mitch. He doesn’t ask a lot of questions and I like that. He’s in the know enough that the reader doesn’t need to know what he’s thinking all the time, though he definitely has thoughts. Finally, Sydney and Serena. Sisters, yes, but very different personalities and beliefs. I like Sydney more and Dol, the dog. Serena was well written, but I couldn’t connect with her as much.

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Ending

This may not make a lot of sense and please stop reading here if you haven’t read either Vicious or Vengeful, MAJOR SPOILERS AHEAD. Click to the next page to see spoilers and the end of this post.

Monday Spotlight: New Release in YA Fiction – The Obsidian Tower by Melissa Caruso

Welcome to the first Monday Spolight on Book Bustle! This will be a weekly post highlighting a new release in a rotating genre! Today, we’ve got The Obsidian Tower by Melissa Caruso, out on June 2nd!

Check out our review on Book Bustle here: Review – The Obsidian Tower

The Obsidian Tower
Melissa Caruso
Publication date: June 2nd, 2020
Genres: YA, Fantasy, Fiction

The mage-marked granddaughter of a ruler of Vaskandar, Ryx was destined for power and prestige at the top of Vaskandran society. But her magic is broken; all she can do is uncontrollably drain the life from everything she touches, and Vaskandar has no place for a mage with unusable powers.

Then, one night, two terrible accidents befall her: Ryx accidentally kills a visiting dignitary in self-defense, activating a mysterious magical artifact sealed in an ancient tower in the heart of her family’s castle.

Ryx flees, seeking a solution to her deadly magic. She falls in with a group of unlikely magical experts investigating the disturbance in Vaskandar—and Ryx realizes that her family is in danger and her domain is at stake. She and her new colleagues must return to the family stronghold to take control of the artifact that everyone wants to claim—before it destroys the world.

Goodreads / Amazon / Barnes & Noble / Indiebound


Blurb courtesy of Goodreads

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AUTHOR SOCIAL LINKS