Twice as Perfect by Louisa Onomé | ARC Review

A Young Adult novel by Louisa Onomé, Twice As Perfect follows a Nigerian Canadian girl dealing with an estranged older brother, helping her cousin plan a huge Nigerian wedding, and pressure from her parents about her future.

The only things worth doing are those that will lead to success.

For seventeen-year-old Adanna Nkwachi, life is all about duty: to school and the debate team, to her Nigerian parents, and even to her cousin Genny as Ada helps prepare Genny’s wedding to Afrobeats superstar Skeleboy (“Skeleboy me, Skeleboy this money, everything na Skeleboy…that Skeleboy!”). Because ever since her older brother, Sam, had a fight with their parents a few years ago and disappeared, somebody has to fill the void he left behind. Ada may never know what caused Sam to leave home, but the one thing she’s certain of is that it’s on her to make sure her parents’ sacrifices aren’t in vain.

One day, chance brings the siblings back together. Although she fears how their parents will react if they find out she and Sam are back in touch, Ada’s determined to get answers about the night Sam left—Sam, who was supposed to be an engineer but is now, what, a poet? The more she learns about Sam’s poetry, the more Ada begins to wonder if maybe her own happiness is just as important as doing what’s expected of her. Amid parental pressure, anxiety over the debate competition, a complicated love life, and the Nigerian wedding-to-end-all-weddings, can Ada learn, just this once, to put herself first?

Rating: 3 out of 5.


Seventeen year old Adanna Nkwachi has had her future planned since she entered high school: get into law school to become lawyer–it’s what she’s good at. Now in her senior year of high school, with everything set for herself and a goal in mind, nothing will sway her decision… that is until she discovers that her long-lost brother who she’d been told had run away from home is performing in town at a poetry show.

As Ada learns more from everything her brother’s been doing and grapples with some truths, she’ll have to decide if becoming a lawyer is truly what she wants, or if it’s her parents wishes making her want it.

This was a pretty decent read! Although I mainly wanted to get it over with because I was bored, the story itself was interesting.

I do really like the message it was sending, and lots of issues here were very much a mood. I think I may have gone through an existential crisis or two.

I found myself understanding how Ada was feeling and I’m really glad with the decision she made about her love life, because otherwise I would’ve been annoyed💀 I must admit though, Ada as well as all the other side characters… I didn’t really feel much towards them, they were just there as characters. minus tayo because my god the hatred i had towards this shallow guy I will say though that the poetry aspects in this book were pretty neat!

Overall, other than being bored for majority of the book and the ending being a bit underwhelming, this was a pretty alright story.


Thank you Harper Collins CA for sending me an ARC in exchange for an honest review!!

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This Vicious Grace (The Last Finestra #1) by Emily Thiede | ARC Review

Three weddings. Three funerals. Alessa’s gift from the gods is supposed to magnify a partner’s magic, not kill every suitor she touches.

Now, with only weeks left until a hungry swarm of demons devours everything on her island home, Alessa is running out of time to find a partner and stop the invasion. When a powerful priest convinces the faithful that killing Alessa is the island’s only hope, her own soldiers try to assassinate her.

Desperate to survive, Alessa hires Dante, a cynical outcast marked as a killer, to become her personal bodyguard. But as rebellion explodes outside the gates, Dante’s dark secrets may be the biggest betrayal. He holds the key to her survival and her heart, but is he the one person who can help her master her gift or destroy her once and for all?

Emily Thiede’s exciting fantasy debut, This Vicious Grace, will keep readers turning the pages until the devastating conclusion and leave them primed for more!

Rating: 4.5 out of 5.

grumpy but sweet bodyguard love interest, touch that can kill, wholesome romance, stunning character development—ALL OF THIS <33

I had zero expectations going into this like I genuinely thought it’d be a boring book and look how wrong I was??? IM IN LOVE. Everything about This Vicious Grace was spectacular.

“She might be but one stitch in the tapestry, but every stitch had a purpose, and threads couldn’t become art without them.”

For years, Alessa has been known as the Finestra—a figure blessed by the god Dea with powers meant to fend off demons who will attack her island on the day of Divorando.

This power though… well her touch can kill anyone it comes in contact with so it’s not really a blessing she considers.

Alessa must find the right partner who can contain all the power that’s stored in her and so far she’s killed all three of her potentials. With little time remainining until Divorando, Alessa must find the one for her asap while also worrying about being assassinated by her own people, and dealing with her ✨dark and alluring✨ bodyguard, Dante👀

“And you keep saying you aren’t the hero.”
“I’m not. You’re the hero. I’m just asking a girl to hold my hand.”

GUYS THEM. ALESSA AND DANTE ARE EVERYTHING. I adore them so so much. Each are unique in their own way and just how they support one another ohmygod the love I have for these two is unexplainable.

Alessa’s longing for physical contact and even just being able to talk to someone🥺 My heart broke for her so much especially with the way people feared (and some hated) her, my precious girl didnt deserve any of that. The way she bloomed into who she wanted to be was so beautifully written and I couldn’t be more proud. She’s such a relatable character and it’s not a “throw-in-your-face” kind of relatable but written so naturally of the feelings many of us had at times. Alessa is actually just so kind, funny and bold I love her so much ❤

Dante !! Literally from the moment he appeared I knew I’d love him. He was acting all grumpy in the beginning but even then he was never actually a jerk but instead it was the little things he did that were so sweet and caring. And my love just grew from there. Dante is basically that one person who keeps saying “Im CrUeL” but literally all his actions and what he says are the exact opposite.

“Sympathy, kindness, love, and friendship—all those precious human experiences that made for a full life—those were for other people, not her.”

THE ROMANCE. THEIR RELATIONSHIP. THE CHEMISTRY. THIS. I swear it’s the definition of precious. I didn’t realize how much I loved two characters just cuddling until I read this book. I was literally dying of happiness and squealing like a fangirl as if thats not what i am in all their cuddling and interactions with one another.

That moment where Dante offered to give Alessa a hug knowing how much it would mean to her after not having contact at all with anyone for years and him pretending that he was grudingly offering this hug but we all know he wanted it just as much—that. my friends, was one of the sweetest moments I’ve ever read.

OH and then Dante and Alessa getting drunk together and playing truth or dare + Alessa blatantly ogling shirtless Dante >>> PLEASE there were too many funny moments with these two I literally reread these scenes like 10 times. An excerpt:

“Ever since you called yourself stale bread, I’ve had wicked cravings.”
He paused, shook his head, then pushed back up.
“I adore bread. Especially baguettes. Long, thick, hot and slathered with—”
He hit the ground, shaking with laughter. “Enough. Mercy. You’re a champion of lewd baking metaphors.”

I could go on forever talking about every amazing scene + the bantering with these two but I’m sure you get the idea and plus you’ll want to see them for yourself hehe

The side characters were also super interesting, and my opinion changed on many of them compared to first impressions cough thinking of two people especially. I adore Kamaria and Kaleb ksdhfksghs also I feel like I sense something between two characters that might develop (??) in the 2nd book.

Now the only reason why this didn’t get 5 stars was because even though my heart stopped for second because of that ending… some of the things that happened were pretty underwhelming? It also felt sudden and kind of rushed thinking about the build-up that led to that moment. But something small like that wasn’t really a big deal for me hence the deduction of 0.5 stars.

ANYWAYS EVERYONE NEEDS TO TRY THIS. If me gushing about the romance didn’t convince you (although how could it not smh) then go for the character development in Alessa or miss out on falling in love.

If This Vicious Grace is only a debut novel I can only imagine how amazing the author’s future books will be.

(4.5⭐)

Thank you Wednesday Books for sending me an ARC via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review!!

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Gallant by V.E. Schwab | ARC Review

Everything casts a shadow. Even the world we live in. And as with every shadow, there is a place where it must touch. A seam, where the shadow meets its source.

Olivia Prior has grown up in Merilance School for girls, and all she has of her past is her mother’s journal—which seems to unravel into madness. Then, a letter invites Olivia to come home—to Gallant. Yet when Olivia arrives, no one is expecting her. But Olivia is not about to leave the first place that feels like home, it doesn’t matter if her cousin Matthew is hostile or if she sees half-formed ghouls haunting the hallways.

Olivia knows that Gallant is hiding secrets, and she is determined to uncover them. When she crosses a ruined wall at just the right moment, Olivia finds herself in a place that is Gallant—but not. The manor is crumbling, the ghouls are solid, and a mysterious figure rules over all. Now Olivia sees what has unraveled generations of her family, and where her father may have come from.

Olivia has always wanted to belong somewhere, but will she take her place as a Prior, protecting our world against the Master of the House? Or will she take her place beside him?

Rating: 2 out of 5.

Well that was pretty bad.

I think I’m just going to stick with Schwab’s fantasy books because this??? This was not it.

There was no plot whatsoever (until like over halfway), but in general I don’t even care 99% if there isn’t one as long as I’m invested in the characters. Which wasn’t the case at all here.

“Safe does not mean happy, does not mean well, does not mean kind.”

For so long, Olivia has longed to be wanted, especially in a place like Merilance… until one day she receives a note from her uncle, Arthur Prior, about coming to live in Gallant–a mysterious, large estate. However, once she gets there Olivia realizes Gallant is not all what it seems to be and there was a reason her mother warned her away from it…

And then goes the page descriptions of the house for almost 200 pages yay! Honestly who doesnt love reading about how a house looks like?? If you don’t, you have no taste.

In all seriousness, if you asked me what happened in this book I couldn’t tell you. It literally feels like nothing happened at all the first half. I almost fell ASLEEP reading it and that never happens to me?? Never in my life have I ever almost fallen asleep reading a book. Gallant is the first to ever do this to me.

Just why.

Why did it take until the 60% mark for the villain to appear and something to happen LIKE WHAT💀 There was so little page time of the *villain* so of course I didnt feel spooked or rather anything towards them.

This book really is the definition of pretty writing, bland story. Like sure the writing was very descriptive and fancy but??? I was bored out of mind?? I could care less about the characters, story, plot (haha what plot) and everything else. I don’t care if you have the most beautiful writing in the world. If the story doesn’t capture my attention, then I don’t like it.

I genuinely do not see the point of this book and I’ve never said this about any book before but really do not see it here.

I will say though that it was very interesting to have a main character who couldnt speak! This is my first book seeing that and it was pretty interesting. I also saw some similarities between this book and Coraline so maybe some may love that a lot.

Other than that, nothing about Gallant appealed to me. It’s considered horror but??? What horror, there was literally nothing spooky about this. Gallant felt like it was written by a completely different person but maybe it’s because of the shift in genre?? I don’t know but I literally adored Schwab’s Shades of Magic series and Addie Larue so I was really hoping to love this too. Instead, I was dying of boredom.

Nothing hurts more than having one of your most anticipated reads by your favourite author be a disappointment. This is probably a just me thing, so to anyone reading this don’t let my review deter you from reading this! i have many super unpopular opinions sooo

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Lulu and Milagro’s Search for Clarity by Angela Velez | ARC Review

Booksmart meets Never Have I Ever in this Latinx road trip adventure—a big-hearted, voice-driven YA about two sisters who couldn’t be more different, but become begrudging partners on their school’s cross-country college trip—from debut author Angela Velez.

Overachiever Luz “Lulu” Zavala has straight As, perfect attendance, and a solid ten-year plan. First up: nail her interview for a dream internship at Stanford, the last stop on her school’s cross-country college road trip. The only flaw in her plan is Clara, her oldest sister, who went off to college and sparked a massive fight with their overprotective Peruvian mom, who is now convinced that out-of-state-college will destroy their family. If Lulu can’t fix whatever went wrong between them, the whole trip—and her future—will be a waste.

Middle sister Milagro wants nothing to do with college, or a nerdy class field trip. Then a spot opens up on the trip just as her own Spring Break plans (Operation: Lose Your Virginity) are thwarted, and she hops on the bus with her glittery lipsticks, more concerned about getting back at her ex than she is about schools or any family drama. But the trip opens her eyes about possibilities she’d never imagined for herself. Maybe she is more than the boy-crazy girl everyone seems to think she is.

On a journey from Baltimore all the way to San Francisco, Lulu and Milagro will become begrudging partners as they unpack weighty family expectations, uncover Clara’s secrets, and maybe even discover the true meaning of sisterhood.

Rating: 3 out of 5.

This was actually pretty okay, like not bad but not good either. I wasn’t really attached to the characters though and the plot was alright but I got bored during some scenes. I don’t have really much to say, so I’ll put all my thoughts of the book in point form.

➼ I definitely loved the diversity !! And it was interesting to see each of the sisters’ journey they went through.

➼ The sibling dynamic was well done and very realistic, I could definitely understand the feelings Lulu had.

➼ Lulu and Milagro had very distinct personalities and you can really see just how different the two are — but also the ways they could actually be really similar in some ways.

➼ The side characters were also really underdeveloped and either bland or the stereotypical mean girls.

➼ The ending was definitely believable in my eyes and it was nicely wrapped up in a way that left the reader wondering what would happen next but at the same time allow for us to imagine how everything would turn out for the characters!

Overall, I think for anyone who generally enjoys reading contemporaries and teens who (especially ones with siblings) want to feel like they can relate to characters that you’d enjoy it!!

_

Thank you Harper Collins Canada for sending me an ARC in exchange for an honest review!!

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Dark Rise (Dark Rise, #1) by C.S. Pacat | ARC Review

The ancient world of magic is no more. Its heroes are dead, its halls are ruins, and its great battles between Light and Dark are forgotten. Only the Stewards remember, and they keep their centuries-long vigil, sworn to protect humanity if the Dark King ever returns.

Sixteen-year-old dock boy Will is on the run, pursued by the men who killed his mother. When an old servant tells him of his destiny to fight beside the Stewards, Will is ushered into a world of magic, where he must train to play a vital role in the oncoming battle against the Dark.

As London is threatened by the Dark King’s return, the reborn heroes and villains of a long-forgotten war begin to draw battle lines. But as the young descendants of Light and Dark step into their destined roles, old allegiances, old enmities and old flames are awakened. Will must stand with the last heroes of the Light to prevent the fate that destroyed their world from returning to destroy his own. 

Rating: 4 out of 5.


I really wasn’t expecting to enjoy this so much like just wow this was amazing??? THE WAY IT GOT SO DARK TOWARDS THE END OMG I LOVE IT SO MUCH.

“The bright star holds, even as the darkness rises.”

This was my first C.S. Pacat book and it definitely won’t be my last. I can’t believe it took me this long to read one of her books especially with how much I’ve seen her name going around. Dark Rise started off pretty slow but as I read it kept getting better and better.

I love the way how the beginning made me think it was just the typical good vs. evil but then changed so dramatically. Like I predicted the plot twists but it was the type of plot twist that I was hoping would happen and am so happy it did.

The characters had so many layers to them *thinking about two characters specifically* like the moral grayness in this book was *chef’s kiss* I’m so very much in love with them.

“We don’t choose the moment. The moment comes whether we will it or not, and we must make ourselves ready.”

I wasn’t sure about Will at first. He wasn’t really interesting but then I began to like him which eventually turned to love. His character is actually super interesting. The calm demeanor he has, being really careful and logical with the decisions he makes + very intelligent in a quiet like manner. It’s insane how he’s able to come to the right conclusions so often?? And I can already tell that there is still so much we don’t know about Will, I’m so so excited to learn more about him.

“Her world, all her dreams, narrowed down to this cell, her false lives stripped away to show the truth: she wasn’t wanted.

This is one of many times where I wish I could give a character a big hug. VIOLET DESERVES SO MUCH LOVE ANYONE WHO HURTS HER FACES MY WRATH🔪🔪 Literally want to murder so many characters for daring to bring her pain. She’s such a strong and loyal friend, I adore her so much. Violet and Will’s friendship was LITERALLY EVERYTHING. Like the loyalty they have for each other and their protectiveness🥺 It makes my heart swell with love, I really hope this relationship isn’t destroyed in any way because I will be heartbroken.

“I think what people were is less important than what they are. And what people are is less important than what they could be.”

JAMES OMG JAMES I LOVE YOU. Is it really any surprise that I ended up loving James in this book?? He’s definitely the character that had the most depth. So many revelations I wasn’t expecting from him and he too made my heart hurt from the pain. And can I just scream about the tension between him and Will??? I read in other reviews that theyre all prepared to wait many books for the main ship to get together and oh no😭😭 I’m ready to go crazy over all the angst and with the way this book ended- *incoherent screaming*

“Dark times lie ahead. But even in the darkest night, there is a star.”

There’s one more character who I really came to like and honestly wasn’t expecting to with the way they were introduced. Cyprian is definitely an interesting character and though he didn’t have many appearances in here, I can so see that he’ll play a bigger role in book 2. And I see the potential for a new ship to sail👀 but we’ll have to see for ourselves in the sequel. I would certainly love to see how it develops hehe

“Dark times lie ahead. But even in the darkest night, there is a star.”

All in all this was such an unexpected delight and I highly recommend it to anyone and everyone. Dark Rise also gave me The Infernal Devices vibes–especially in the beginning. Once you get past the beginning with its world-building, it gets super good. There’s so much potential for this series and I can’t wait to see how it all develops from here on out.

Thank you Harper Collins Canada for sending me an ARC in exchange for an honest review!!

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Glint (The Plated Prisoner, #2) by Raven Kennedy | Review

“You want to make your life easier? Then be the caged bird that you are and sing.”

For ten years, I’ve lived in a gilded cage inside King Midas’s golden castle. But one night changed everything.

Now I’m here, a prisoner of Fourth Kingdom’s army, and I’m not sure if I’m going to make it out of this in one piece. They’re marching to battle, and I’m the bargaining chip that will either douse the fire or spark a war.

At the heart of my fear, my worry, there’s him—Commander Rip.

Known for his brutality on the battlefield, his viciousness is unsurpassed. But I know the truth about what he is.

Fae.

The betrayers. The murderers. The ones who nearly destroyed Orea, wiping out Seventh Kingdom in the process. Rip has power sizzling beneath this skin and glinting spikes down his spine. But his eyes—his eyes are the most compelling of all.

When he turns those black eyes on me, I feel captive for an entirely different reason.

I may be out of my cage, but I’m not free, not even close. In the game of kings and armies, I’m the gilded pawn. The question is, can I out maneuver them?

This is the captivating second book of The Plated Prisoner series. It’s an adult epic fantasy story blending romance, intrigue, and beautiful imagery. Return to the seductive story of magic inspired by the myth of King Midas, and get caught up in the world of Orea.

Please note: There is explicit language and romance in this book, not suitable for those under the age of 18.

Rating: 4.5 out of 5.

“Sometimes things need first to be ruined in order to then be remade.”


After how the first book was, I so wasn’t expecting to love this so much?? And unlike Gild, this didn’t leave me feeling super uncomfortable and disturbed. I definitely enjoyed this a lot more.

And bonus! There was barely any Midas, so that was fun ❤

“There’s safety in loneliness, but there’s a lurking danger too. One that doesn’t come from anything other than yourself.”

Let me just start off by saying how much I loved the found family in thus just chef’s kiss it was so precious. I adored the new characters introduced and their interactions with Auren. Judd, Lu, Osrik, Keg, Rip—I need more of them please and thank you.

“Are people so content in ignorance that they’ll believe every lie fed to them, despite what they right in front of their eyes?”

The growth Auren went through from the beginning to the end was amazing. Although some realizations took awhile—of course I got where she was coming from😭 the frustration I felt… but when she finally opened her eyes, I so loved that moment. I’m excited to see her character develop even more from here on out and hopefully watch her deliver some pain towards cough certain bastards 🙂

“I hope you burn so bright that you scorch your Golden King down to ash.”

Commander Rip(yes, his name’s actually Rip💀 the way i wheezed bahaha was actually so sweet and how he pushed Auren to realize certain things about a certain person🥺 And just Rip challenging Auren and what she so strongly believed in before. He played such a huge impact on her and not in a jerk-ish way.

The slow burn was absolute torturee. There was barely any romance in this honestly like it wasn’t a huge focus, which I’m totally fine with since all this sets it up for the next book anyways. I need more Aurip content for sure.

I can see now as to why this is for fans of JLA and SJM. I got A Court of Mist and Fury and A Kingdom of Flesh and Fire vibes from this. ACOMAF with there being that one character who makes the mc realize some things & helps them with their trauma. AKOFAF with the traveling between places except it not taking 600 pages for that to happen. There are probably other similarities but my brain’s not working right now so whoops ¯_(ツ)_/¯

Overall, I loved this wayyy more than Gild obviously like the new friendships, banter, and character development was just so good. The reason this didn’t get 5 stars though is because the Malina chapters were boring and I could care less about her💀

Oh but my biggest complaint is that the bastard didn’t die 😦

─── ・ 。゚☆: .☽ . :☆゚. ───

Reviews:
Gild: ★★
Glint: ★★★★.5

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Oathbringer (The Stormlight Archive, #3) by Brandon Sanderson | Review

In Oathbringer, the third volume of the New York Times bestselling Stormlight Archive, humanity faces a new Desolation with the return of the Voidbringers, a foe with numbers as great as their thirst for vengeance.

Dalinar Kholin’s Alethi armies won a fleeting victory at a terrible cost: The enemy Parshendi summoned the violent Everstorm, which now sweeps the world with destruction, and in its passing awakens the once peaceful and subservient parshmen to the horror of their millennia-long enslavement by humans. While on a desperate flight to warn his family of the threat, Kaladin Stormblessed must come to grips with the fact that the newly kindled anger of the parshmen may be wholly justified.

Nestled in the mountains high above the storms, in the tower city of Urithiru, Shallan Davar investigates the wonders of the ancient stronghold of the Knights Radiant and unearths dark secrets lurking in its depths. And Dalinar realizes that his holy mission to unite his homeland of Alethkar was too narrow in scope. Unless all the nations of Roshar can put aside Dalinar’s blood-soaked past and stand together–and unless Dalinar himself can confront that past–even the restoration of the Knights Radiant will not prevent the end of civilization.

Rating: 5 out of 5.

Leave it to Sanderson to create one of the best character developments I’ve ever seen. I went from thinking Dalinar was ‘meh’ to bawling my eyes out over his character and loving him so much.



I’m honestly just struck speechless. And like why am I even surprised?? It’s Sanderson. No words will ever be enough to convey the emotional journey I had with Oathbringer. There cannot be a journey without a beginning—and it truly shows.

“I will take responsibility for what I have done. If I must fall, I will rise each time a better man.

Dalinar’s life has been anything but peaceful—however, even with the world at chaos, he had his own self to trust and rely on knowing who and what he’s come from… but is that really true?

When memories slowly start to come back—memories buried deep within that were never supposed to emerge—shocking truths are revealed making Dalinar question whether the man he is today… has always been a lie?

“The most important step a man can take? It’s not the first one, is it? It’s the next one. Always the next step, Dalinar.”

I really don’t think I’ll be finding another character to rival Dalinar’s development in this book any time soon or maybe ever because seriously, it’s just that spectacular. Anyone who says it’s bad clearly doesn’t know what they’re talking about and I will be ready 🔪🔪

Literally every revelation thrown completely shook me to the core. I was honestly so so worried coming into this because of everything I’d heard about Oathbringer being Dalinar focused and there being some pacing issues but I needn’t have feared because I adored it all.

Dalinar’s past was so intriguing and suspenseful. Seeing the man he is today has me in awe with all that he’s gone through and done. A tyrant he was but now… now he’s something much different. cryptic message is cryptic mehehe

“Perhaps it was time, for once, to stop letting the rain dictate his mood. He couldn’t banish the seed of darkness inside him, but Stormfather, he didn’t need to let it rule him either.”

So many of Kaladin’s scenes physically hurt me. He doesn’t have as much as a focus as he did in the previous books but oh his journey is still very much ongoing. Kaladin’s depression is even more evident in this book and there’s still so much he has to work with. But oh god literally the amount of pain Kal’s had to go through with – it hurts so much. Especially a certain scene during the 2nd half😭😭

I really can’t wait to see what comes next for Kal and how he’ll battle the darkness within him. He deserves all the love in the world ❤

“I will protect those I hate. Even if the one I hate most is myself.”

While Kaladin got less screen time than usual, Bridge Four got so much more. Like getting some of their POVs??? A BLESSING. Seriously, the way Bridge Four has grown so much—it makes me want to cry. They’ve come such a long way from the defeated and lost bridgemen they once were and I’m so so proud. I never in a million years imagined Sanderson could make me love them more than I already do but clearly he’s done exactly that in Oathbringer. And I just love how even though all of Bridge Four’s grown so much—it doesn’t mean each and every one of them is completely fine.

Teft’s POV was something I never knew I needed in my life. Seeing through his POV how much he was hurting… it was so heartbreaking😭 But of course Bridge Four would be there for him AND JUST MY HEART- I said it before and I’ll say it again: Each of Bridge Four’s POV and everything about them was a blessing.

“It’s terrible to have been hurt. It’s unfair, and awful, and horrid. But Shallan… it’s okay to live on.”

CAN YOU HEAR ME SOBBING??? “The Girl Who Stood Up” is officially one of my all time favourite chapters. Shallan is going through so much hell, it’s tearing me apart. I need my girl happy😭 Her past still haunts her even now and because of that past, Shallan truly believes that she deserves all the pain in the world. She thinks herself to be broken and hates herself so much.

“Accept the pain, but don’t accept that you deserved it.”

Because of her trauma, she’s resorted to having different personas in order to escape the pain. It’s really amazing how Sanderson dealt with her storyline but at the same time—SO MUCH PAIN. Her journey’s only beginning and there’s still so much Shallan has to work through, one of them being to be able to forgive herself.

I genuinely don’t understand the people who hate Shallan??? Also, Wit being there for Shallan is literally everything. He’s so sweet, I love him so much🥺🥺

“You don’t have to hide, Shallan. You don’t have to push it down. Maybe the vase is cracked, but that only means it can show what’s inside. And I like what’s inside.”

If anyone reads this quote and tells me that Adolin and Shallan aren’t perfect for each other 🔪 Shadolin is literally in my top 3 OTPs. Honestly, how does Sanderson always create the most wholesome relationships??? Not only is Adolin a cinnamon roll as always BUT LIKE HE’S SO SUPPORTIVE OF SHALLAN?? It’s so precious and could he be anymore perfect?? Both of them support the other without a hint of judgement from their revelations sfdsfsds I love them

If Adolin and/or Shallan are killed in book 5 I will literally die and haunt Sanderson for the rest of his life 🙂 That goes for any other character I love in this series.

“Love wasn’t about being right or wrong, but about standing up and helping when your partner’s back was bowed.”

I must admit that I didn’t really have much of an opinion on Navani previously but after this book?? QUEEN. I adore her so much. And the fact that the next book is Navani focused??? I cannot express how much I’m excited for that.

“You are not a heretic, Dalinar Kholin. You are a king, a Radiant, and a father. You are a man with complicated beliefs, who does not accept everything you are told. You decide how you are defined. Don’t surrender that to them. They will gleefully take the chance to define you, if you allow it.”

I can’t believe I’m saying this but Jasnah actually annoyed me a few times HOWEVER she had so many amazing moments that definitely made up for all that. Especially that one scene !! I almost got a heart attack and right after that was crying because literally all the feels.

“You claim you are not the person everyone thinks you are. Maybe you worry, instead, that you are that person.”

Is it really any surprise that Renarin too is a cinnamon roll who must be protected at all costs??? I LOVE HIM SO MUCH AND NEED MORE. He’s trying so hard to make his father proud and be useful and just-🥺 You’re already amazing, Renarin.

“Failure is the mark of a life well lived. In turn, the only way to live without failure is to be of no use to anyone.”

Of course, I already mentioned Wit but seriously, who does he think he is to turn me into an emotional mess?? He’s such a mysterious character whose motives we still don’t know, but like I love him so much?? If it ends up being that he was fooling everyone all along or something highly doubtful, I’ll be beyond heartbroken and feel very murderous towards a certain guy 🔪

I’m still reeling from that ending like what the actual hell?? The amount of plot twists and events that happened??? Like literally all the way to the very last page, its revelation after revelation. The Sanderlanche in this was no joke like I still can’t get over that last plot twist especially?? This is so much more of a cliffhanger than The Way of Kings and Words of Radiance were like oh god the torture it must’ve been waiting for the 4th book WHICH HAS ME SCARED FOR THAT CLIFFHANGER ESPECIALLY AFTER WHAT A CERTAIN SOMEONE SAID. sobbing

Also shoutout to Sanderson as of this wasnt a review for his book for creating not only such beautiful and emotional lines but also having so many of them apply to real life and be so inspiring?? That literally takes so much skill and I’m so going to use one of his quotes (now that’s going to be very painful) for my yearbook🔥

I once said in a review that I trusted Sanderson but clearly I wasn’t thinking at that time ha ha the last word I’d use to associate Sanderson with would be “trust.”

I’m not ready for the agonizing wait book 5 will be once I read Rhythm of War. Yay pain!😃

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Reviews:
The Way of Kings:: ★★★★★
Words of Radiance: ★★★★★
Oathbringer: ★★★★★

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Iron Widow (Iron Widow, #1) by Xiran Jay Zhao | Review

The boys of Huaxia dream of pairing up with girls to pilot Chrysalises, giant transforming robots that can battle the mecha aliens that lurk beyond the Great Wall. It doesn’t matter that the girls often die from the mental strain.

When 18-year-old Zetian offers herself up as a concubine-pilot, it’s to assassinate the ace male pilot responsible for her sister’s death. But she gets her vengeance in a way nobody expected—she kills him through the psychic link between pilots and emerges from the cockpit unscathed. She is labeled an Iron Widow, a much-feared and much-silenced kind of female pilot who can sacrifice boys to power up Chrysalises instead.​

To tame her unnerving yet invaluable mental strength, she is paired up with Li Shimin, the strongest and most controversial male pilot in Huaxia​. But now that Zetian has had a taste of power, she will not cower so easily. She will miss no opportunity to leverage their combined might and infamy to survive attempt after attempt on her life, until she can figure out exactly why the pilot system works in its misogynist way—and stop more girls from being sacrificed.

Rating: 4 out of 5.

I got some Skyward vibes from this and I just loved it so much.

Also Zetian, please marry me.


The Hunduns who are dangeous creatures and are trying to destroy society which lies in the Great Wall ~ the Krell who are also dangerous and mysterious creatures trying to destroy the human race/

Fighter pilots who use Chrysalises (aka mechas) to battle against the Hunduns to defend their home ~ Pilots who use fighter jets to battle the Krell and defend their land

Society is against this one girl who managaes to kill one of their pilots and has too much power ~ society is against this one girl whose father was branded as a coward and now view her as one too.

Seriously, if you loved the plot of Skyward, then I definitely say you’ll probably love this too! The similarities I saw sdfgsdfs it was so cool but I have to say that the idea of giant mechas was even more interesting than what Skyward had. And like the fanart designs??? THEY LOOK EPIC.

Design by Setodra


Design by Gio Manning

I will say that the only reason this didn’t get five stars was because of that I was a bit confused in the beginning with the information given but that could just be me and my dumb brain and some pacing issues throughout the story but other than that !! EVERYONE MUST READ THIS.

“But I have no faith in love. Love cannot save me. I choose vengeance.”

So before reading this I actually had no knowledge of footbinding, so finding about it here in this book… oh god. Just shows another way with how cruel society can be to women istg. And seeing Zetian with this disability and not letting it define her?? I love it. Of course, there were still moments where she did admit to needing help due to her feet and she wasn’t embarrassed about it at all, not being stubborn about the whole situation which made me respect the queen even more.🔥

“If we want something, we have to push back against everything around us and take it by force.”

The way Zetian had men fall at her feet (literally) made me cackle in delight. They all had it coming and deserved so much worse ❤ Xiran created such an amazing female protagonist like I would fall at Zetian’s feet gladly all day, every day. SUCH A QUEEN.

Also can I just say how much I wheezed reading so many scenes where this book made fun of other typical cliche tropes?? yes, i say this liking said cliche tropes I loved it so much pleasee. A glimpse:

“Do you honestly expect me to believe you’re some misunderstood, secretly sweet guy?”

wheezing now isnt that the case always?? and i love that trope

“Yes, because love doesn’t solve problems. Solving problems solves problems.”

oh how other YA protagonists wouldn’t agree

“You’d better not be tangled up in a love triangle.”

I CANT PLZ I LOVED THIS BAHAHAHA

Anyways, Xiran is such a legend and if this is only just their debut, I can’t wait to see more of their books!! AND THE WAY THEY ENDED THAT BOOK- THAT IS ILLEGAL HOW DARE YOU, XIRAN. You’ll be paying for my therapy bills if I think what happened at the end actually truly happened 🔪🔪

ALSO CAN I JUST SCREAM ABOUT THERE BEING A POLY RELATIONSHIP???? I LOVE THEM ALL SO CUTE UGH. Yizhi and Shimin are such cinnamon rolls sdfdsgs plus Zetian the queen, I swear they’re perfect it hurts. And the fanart I’ve seen on Xiran’s page isn’t helping at all😩

Zetian and Yizhi by 辞客ck

Shimin and Yizhi by Guilu

Zetian and Shimin by 妄猫Sama

All I feel is pain, please give me book 2 right now. * sobbing *

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Thank you Penguin Random House Canada for sending me an ARC via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review!!

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Our Violent Ends (These Violent Delights, #2) by Chloe Gong | ARC Review

Shanghai is under siege in this captivating and searingly romantic sequel to These Violent Delights, which New York Times bestselling author Natasha Ngan calls “deliciously dark.”

The year is 1927, and Shanghai teeters on the edge of revolution.

After sacrificing her relationship with Roma to protect him from the blood feud, Juliette has been a girl on the warpath. One wrong move, and her cousin will step in to usurp her place as the Scarlet Gang’s heir. The only way to save the boy she loves from the wrath of the Scarlets is to have him want her dead for murdering his best friend in cold blood. If Juliette were actually guilty of the crime Roma believes she committed, his rejection might sting less.

Roma is still reeling from Marshall’s death, and his cousin Benedikt will barely speak to him. Roma knows it’s his fault for letting the ruthless Juliette back into his life, and he’s determined to set things right—even if that means killing the girl he hates and loves with equal measure.

Then a new monstrous danger emerges in the city, and though secrets keep them apart, Juliette must secure Roma’s cooperation if they are to end this threat once and for all. Shanghai is already at a boiling point: The Nationalists are marching in, whispers of civil war brew louder every day, and gangster rule faces complete annihilation. Roma and Juliette must put aside their differences to combat monsters and politics, but they aren’t prepared for the biggest threat of all: protecting their hearts from each other.

Rating: 5 out of 5.


I am an empty shell of my former self 😃
Chloe you’re paying for my therapy bills ❤


This is the 2nd time in my life that I’ve been this heartbroken over a book. Literally it was a full out sob-fest for me reading this.

I don’t think I will ever truly recover and really I should’ve known better but of course I foolishly hoped. My heart has been stomped on, torn into pieces and thrown into an explosion. I actually wasn’t expecting to be this heartbroken like WHY did I go ahead and fall in love with every single one of these characters?? I was literally setting myself up for pain * sobs * But oh, isn’t that the beauty of reading? To fall in love only to have your heart broken.

Just the way I got trolled so badly, like some of the events actually had me thinking otherwise but oh no no🤡 I am now and forever depressed™

I can literally imagine this was how Chloe was when she wrote OVE:

The monster of Shanghai who?? I only know Miss Chloe Gong * sobbing *


(Warning: There will be spoiler from the 1st book, These Violent Delights!!)

═══.·:·.☽✧ ❀ ✧☾.·:·.═══

“A rose is a rose, even by another name. But we choose whether we will offer beauty to the world, or if we will use our thorns to sting.”

1927 Shanghai and the city is at the brink of complete chaos. Sightings of monsters have re-emerged, the Communists have grown more bold, and the two gangs ruling the city have gone at each other out for more blood than usual.

Meanwhile, Juliette Cai is having to watch her every step in the face of Tyler–her cousin just waiting to find reason to declare Juliette a traitor and become heir to the Scarlet Gang–and watch for Roma Montagov who is out for revenge after the death of Marshall Seo. Oh and also worry about the appearances of monsters and state of the city. Life is stressful for Juliette 😦

I won’t go into anymore details of the plot because ✨spoilers✨ BUT OMG THE WAY IT GRIPPED ME FROM THE START?? It took me a while to get into TVD but this!! Literally there wasn’t a moment in this book I didn’t love. I was a ball of anxiety the whole time. of course my heart was also dying because of the wholesomeness and very few precious scenes And like I actually dropped my expectations for this because I thought and feared it wouldn’t be that good but oh how very, very wrong I was.

The characters were so much more fleshed out here?? I already liked them before in TVD but I was just so so in love with them all here to the point where I’d straight up be PRAYING they’d survive😭 Benedikt, Marshall, Kathleen… I didn’t think it was possible to adore them all so much, my heart is so full of love. And don’t even get me started on the two stars who went from enemies-to-lovers-to-enemies in TVD sdfsfgs THE ANGST.

“She was not fighting for love. She was protecting her own, everyone else’s be damned.”

THIS QUEEN. Did I believe it to be possible for Juliette to be even more of a queen than she already was? No. Did it happen anyways? HELL YES. All the pain she had to go through, making Roma believe that she had actually killed Marshall and subjecting herself to his hatred * sobbing * And it was all to protect him and the city. And then also having to deal with that bastard Tyler along with her own family and people having not so much faith in her ugh. Juliette hiding away any signs of weakness because people were always watching was so heartbreaking. She couldn’t give her people any more reason to doubt her then they already do. Kathleen being the only one she could be herself with, always there for her🥺

You know that moment when you have so much to say that you don’t know how to write it all out? That’s me right now. Just know if you loved Juliette before, you will definitely love her even more now.

“And maybe he was a coward. He was a coward who wouldn’t stop loving a wicked thing.”

ROMA, MY LOVE. Oh my god, he’s such a cinnamon roll that must be protected at all costs. The hatred and love he felt towards Juliette hurt my soul. Even after seeing Juliette “kill” Marshall, a small part of him believed that there was more to it AND HOW RIGHT THAT FEELING WAS. Of course, Juliette tried as hard as ever to extinguish that feeling but still sdfdgsgds THE ANGST BETWEEN THE TWO.

“Only he knew if he screamed I hate you, what he really meant was I love you. I still love you so much that I hate you for it.”

Enemies-to-lovers-to-enemies at its peak😩
The first book’s romance wasn’t a really big focus BUT HERE?? God, the tension was literally killing me. So many times my heart stopped because of these two😭 The two heirs of rival gangs who dared to love one another ❤

(credit: @polarts_)

“And if you are gunned down because you want to fight a war that doesn’t belong to you, I will never forgive this city. I will tear it down to pieces, and you will be to blame!

When the ship is in a heated argument and then one of them breaks and yells “because I love you!” sdfsfgsgs MY HEART I LOVED THIS SCENE SO MUCH IT WAS EVERYTHING I WANTED. (view spoiler)[The only crime was that IT TOOK SO LONG for the confession😭 like the last 70 pages?? that is just too cruel (hide spoiler)]

The amount of pain I was in during this whole book like not only did I have suffer watching Roma and Juliette BUT ALSO BENEDIKT WAS SO BROKEN IT HURT. Believing Marshall to be dead completely destroyed him and the whole time throughout I was just screaming “he’s alive Benedikt, he’s alive!!” That was honestly just true torture knowing Marshall was alive. Benedikt being so reckless about his life like no Ben what are you doing😭

And meanwhile, there’s Marshall — AKA MY PRECIOUS BEAN — who missed everyone, but of course Ben the most🥺 The two being apart pained me so much, like why can’t everyone just be happy?? Is that too much to ask for??
Stan BenMars forever ❤

(credit: @Kirisy_art)

Also let it be remembered that Benedikt is and forever will be the only sensible one of the whole group. (view spoiler)[He literally stopped each and everyone of them (in terms of Roma, Juliette, and Marshall) from trying to kill themselves please he really got sick of the self-sacrificing😭 (hide spoiler)]

“Keep fighting for love. It is worth it.”

ALSO LET ME JUST SCREAM ABOUT JULIETTE AND MARSHALL’S FRIENDSHIP. It was so beautiful, sweet, and just everything omg I loved it so so so much. Their banter was like one between siblings and the way my heart was about to burst😭 IT WAS SO BEAUTIFUL. Literally all the relationships between the characters were so so amazing, I can’t choose a favourite it’s impossible.

“And yet wasn’t that the root of all hatred? Wasn’t that what made it so vicious? There was never a reason. Never a good one. Never a fair one.”

Kathleen Lang, please marry me. She’s literally such a genuine and kind-hearted person just how?? Such a morally good character and the development she went through by the end of this book???🥺 I was actually about to cry. Also, Juliette and her just have the most wholesome friendship ever, there was moment between them that made me so emotional, get a friend like Kathleen😭

Also this is totally off-topic but I’m WHEEZING at how I said at the end of my These Violent Delights review how my loyalty will forever lie with the Scarlet Gang… HAHA no the Scarlet Gang can go to hell 🙂
Correction: My loyalty forever lies with Roma and Juliette ❤ They are true leaders.

↓ MAJOR SPOILERS FOR OVE IN THIS SECTION ↓

═══.·:·.☽✧ ❀ ✧☾.·:·.═══

“Keep fighting for love. Juliette had wanted to be selfish, had wanted to run. But this was their love⁠—violent and bloody. This city was their love. They couldn’t deny their upbringings as the heirs of Shanghai, as two pieces of a throne. What was left of their love if they rejected that? How could they live with themselves, look at each other, knowing they had been presented a choice and gone against who they were at the core.”

I legit can’t even write their names without tears blurring my vision. LIKE I’M ACTUALLY STRUGGLING WRITING THIS RIGHT NOW TRYING TO SEE. It’s so heartbreaking my heart physically hurts. All they wanted was to live happy, alone and free from the blood feud ohmygod AND THEY EVEN HAD THE OPPORTUNITY TO RUN AWAY, but oh Roma and Juliette were too noble for their own good and I both love and hate them for that. They just wanted to love each other freely. They just wanted peace, and they couldn’t even have that. I’M SOBBING. They gave up their lives for the city that caused them so much pain. PLEASE HOW ARE ROMA AND JULIETTE SO GOOD??

And like obviously it shouldn’t have been a surprise they were going to die considering it was a retelling of R&J. Like even the foreshadowing made it obvious BUT I STILL FOOLISHLY HOPED CHLOE WOULD SPARE OUR HEARTS. It wouldn’t have been an accurate retelling if she hadn’t followed through BUT STILL😭😭 It pains me so so much and I just want to crawl into a hole and die because those two so deserved all the happiness in this world.

I WANTED BENMARS AND ROMAJULIETTE TO LIVE NEXT TO EACH OTHER, HAVE KIDS, AND GROW OLD TOGETHER HAPPY THIS ISN’T FAIR, THIS PAIN IS ILLEGAL. I love that Roma and Juliette got to at least die together holding hands and knowing that both of their cousins were dead at least but omg I will never recover from this. And the gangs were disbanded because of their deaths so at least that’s something😭

They were only married for one day before they died * sobbing * Chloe you’re too cruel.

“In this life they had been born enemies. In this life they had blood for miles between them, wide enough to run a river, deep enough to forge a valley. In the next, maybe there would be peace.”

═══.·:·.☽✧ ❀ ✧☾.·:·.═══

This review was a chaotic mess, so you can tell just how much this book destroyed me. It’s been months since a book made me feel this way and I don’t know if I should be thanking or cursing Chloe. Either way, STAN THIS QUEEN FOR MAKING ME FEEL LIKE THIS. I will forever remember each of these lovable characters and absolutely can’t wait for Foul Lady Fortune which hopefully won’t break me as much as OVE did. lies, the masochist in me hopes for that

Now, time to go through the stages of grief… except in this case, I’ll never get to the 5th✌

Thank you Simon & Schuster Canada for sending me an ARC in exchange for an honest review! All quotes in this review are subject to change upon release date.

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These Violent Delights: ★★★★

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Kingdom of the Cursed (Kingdom of the Wicked, #2) by Kerri Maniscalco | Review

After selling her soul to become Queen of the Wicked, Emilia travels to the Seven Circles with the enigmatic Prince of Wrath, where she’s introduced to a seductive world of vice.

She vows to do whatever it takes to avenge her beloved sister, Vittoria… even if that means accepting the hand of the Prince of Pride, the king of demons.

The first rule in the court of the Wicked? Trust no one. With back-stabbing princes, luxurious palaces, mysterious party invitations, and conflicting clues about who really killed her twin, Emilia finds herself more alone than ever before. Can she even trust Wrath, her one-time ally in the mortal world… or is he keeping dangerous secrets about his true nature?

Emilia will be tested in every way as she seeks a series of magical objects that will unlock the clues of her past and the answers she craves…

One sister.
Two sinful princes.
Infinite deception with a side of revenge… Welcome to Hell.

From #1 New York Times bestselling author of Stalking Jack the Ripper Kerri Maniscalco comes the sizzling, sweepingly romantic sequel to Kingdom of the Wicked!

Rating: 4 out of 5.

This was definitely a character driven book and I was here for it all the way.

^^ basically Emilia in KotC cackles

“Better to reign in Hell than serve in Heaven.”

After the betrayals and shocking revelations in Kingdom of the Wicked, Emilia is even more determined to find her sister’s murderer—no matter what bargains she must make… even if it means doing the forbidden.

With all of that, she must also deal with her conflicted feelings towards a certain hot demon prince. Is it lust? More lies? Or something more? Either way, Emilia must not fall for his charms and demonic influence.

But I mean, who can resist a demon prince??? certainly not me

Credit: @morganaOanagrom

“I may have been foolish before, but, thank the goddess, I was learning quickly.”

Okay but like Emilia was such a queen in this book. I loved her already in KotW BUT HERE??? Her character development was spectacular sdfgdfs my love literally went📈📈 She’s not as naïve as she was in the 1st book and now is soo cunning with her schemes, it makes me cackle in delight.

And after that ending??? No words will ever be able to express how hyped I am to see certain events play out. Emilia is on a very intriguing path and I definitely can’t say I don’t love it. For so long, Emilia’s been struggling with doing what’s right and avenging her sister—doing all of that alone. With demons everywhere. In Hell.

I don’t know how this girl’s able to deal with all of that and not lose her mind. Emilia needs a hug🥺

“Every villain thinks themselves the hero. And vice versa. In truth, there’s a little villain and hero in each of us. Depending on the circumstances.”

Oh Wrath, how my love grew for you but also declined. There were so many precious and wholesome moments between Wrath and Emilia omg it made me swoooon. And then Emilia has the audacity to say she wishes her “real life” was a romance novel- pain That hit hard😭

Like Wrath taking care of Emilia when she was suffering from hypothermia?? Wrath feeding Emilia chocolate-covered berries?? I’M JEALOUS.

But unfortunately, I do have to say that Wrath disgusted me at one point in the novel iykyk and though he learned from those mistakes and went to great extent to redeem himself—apologizing and following without question orders given by Emilia, I don’t 100% forgive him. It’ll probably take awhile tbh, but hopefully the 3rd book will clear up all of that for me.

“Fate may deal its hand, try encouraging our path or intervene, but we are ultimately free to choose our own destiny. Never doubt that.”

The new characters interactions that were in this book!! I absolutely adored it. Anir and Emilia’s friendship was so sweet ugh I love them so much. The training and conversations they had together were amazingg, but Fauna and Emilia’s conversations were definitely god tier – omg the things they said wheeze

The best interactions though were the ones between Emilia and the other Princes of Hell. I wish we could’ve learned and seen more of them :(( Like for a book set in Hell, they barely made much appearances and the three that we did get to see… were pretty brief, so that was a little disappointing.

Pride intrigues me so much, there’s definitely more to him than meets the eye. The same goes for Envy and maybe even Gluttony sdfsfsgfs I really want to know their true motives like they’re such interesting characters ughh the questions I have are killing me. Even with these princes not appearing as much as I hoped, AT LEAST I GOT TO SEE A DRUNK ENVY. Now that is something I’ll never forget anytime soon.

Anyways next book – petition for more Princes of Hell.

“All legends contain fragments of truth.”

I’m proud to say that I guessed one of the major plot twists yes ik practically everyone guessed it too but shhh let me savor this !! THE OTHER PLOT TWIST THOUGH??? I DID NOT SEE THAT COMING. AND THEN KERRI ENDING IT THAT WAY??? That is so cruel sobbing I flipped the page expecting there to be another page and then see “Acknowledgements” staring back at me-

We thought the ending of KotW was cruel?? laughs She definitely showed us what “cruel” really is. I’m in pain knowing that we have an agonizing year ahead of us to see how this concludes.

I wish I could’ve given this 5 stars – especially with how excited I was for KotC – but I can’t deny that I didn’t love it as much as I did with KotW. And like I’m always a sucker for romance, which is exactly what this had more of than the 1st book yet I still love KotW more. I’m thinking it might be the mood I’m currently in, but this just didn’t give me the same feelings I got with the first book. Of course, I definitely still enjoyed this and am so ready for the next book!

Anyways, let the suffering begin😃✌

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Reviews:

Kingdom of the Wicked: ★★★★★
Kingdom of the Cursed: ★★★★

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