Like Dash racing through books and picking the vegetables out of my food.
Last week I posted a Try a Chapter Tag in which I decided to read everything I tried because I am clearly not good at putting books aside. Well, once I actually start them. Buying them and putting them on the endless TBR is a whole other story. I read My Plain Jane, From Twinkle with Love, Falling Kingdoms, To Kill a Kingdom and Sky in the Deep.
Turns out first impressions did not hold (in some cases) but I thought I’d do mini-reviews for all of them…
Sky in the Deep
By: Adrienne Young
This is the one I said I’d most likely put aside and indeed I did kind of make it last turned out I liked it more. Eelyn is a member of the Aska clan who for generations has been fighting the Riki warriors. Five-years after losing her brother she seems him again on the battlefield.
Fighting for the enemy.
This begins a finding oneself tale. Here I really liked the character work, the village life and surprisingly the love story. Fiske would be a great book boyfriend save for the fact I couldn’t stop picturing Tormund from Game of Thrones. I did think the end wrapped up a little too quick and nice but points for a stand-alone!
My Plain Jane
By: Cynthia Hand, Brodi Ashton & Jodi Meadows
Jane Eyre with ghosts. Ghost hunters. Ghost beacons. Ghosts (obviously) 🙂 Charlotte Bronte actually being a part of the story. Bram. And some fun modern day pop culture references get worked in as well. I didn’t think it was as funny as the first one.
Maybe that’s the thing? There they were taking a girl who we can all agree seriously got screwed life wise and rewriting her history. Here it was a classic much-loved work of literature and I felt like it just didn’t gel together just didn’t have the same spark.
Both of these books would be amazing films of miniseries!
Though I loved the resolution with the main ghost and it’s points about love being endless. Still glad I bought the book still can’t wait for the next one which I believe is Calamity Jane (i.e. my families childhood nickname for me!)
By: Morgan Rhodes
This is the first book in a series about a kingdom torn apart whose people are deeply separated, a vicious King and the search for magic to return and either save them or doom them. That’s all up in the air.
This was the one that started with a bang. A brutal murder and a character I desperately wanted to see get it by the end and this is the one that kind of felt like it tapered off to me and was a typical YA fantasy. Super special girl. A Kylo Ren like character that I didn’t like at all and Jonas the revolutionary desperate to avenge the death of his brother.
Unless the person he wants to avenge it upon has pretty hair.
Don’t get me wrong there’s a lot I liked. Princess Cleo (of the many potential suitors) and I liked the magic elements though they were kind of in the background. I’ve already bought book two but I hope it swings back around to surprise me.
Recommend: Withholding judgement.
*I want to at least see where book two goes.
To Kill a Kingdom
By: Alexandra Christo
Lira is a siren who likes to capture Prince’s hearts. Not in the love way either. Elian is a siren killer looking for her at the start of the book she does in a friend of his and gets herself in trouble with mommy (aka evil Sea Queen.)
Bonus points for cool world building (I really loved the two cities we wound up in) and being a standalone. I also think Christo did a good job with describing the battle at the end.
But the story itself?
Just what you think it’s going to be. On top of that Lira is a cupcake. Elian’s pirate crew are all wise cracking cupcakes. And I’ve read three books this year (two of them YA) about killers in which people just mainly threw up their hands or fell in love with them. Very strange to me.
Recommend: Eh. The siren element is interesting and the world building but there’s an ocean of mermaid/sea creature books out right now to dive into.
From Twinkle, with Love
By: Sandhya Menon
Dear Twinkle, I don’t know why your friends put up with you either. High school is hard but you’re giving me a headache.
Twinkle and Sahil are working together on a movie for the summer festival and the future film maker writing about this and her life to all her favorite female directors. And boys. The one she likes (maybe) the one who likes her (definitely) the secret admirer (got it before the reveal.) Yes Twinkle’s got a bit of a chip on her shoulder. Like I said high school is also full of incredibly unlikeable characters.
So I didn’t connect with Twinkle. I did like the other characters and I appreciated the letter format. Although I would have liked more to do with the actual making of the movie. I think there’s only a handful of scenes. Interestingly the biggest things on the film are Twinkle being rude on set and deciding if she’s going to use “questionable” footage that she took and expose everyone she hates.
Recommend: Pass on this one. But I am interested in checking out more from the author in the future.
That’s the wrap-up of all the books I read from the Try a Chapter Book Tag in which I just plain old read the books which probably goes to show you the power of a strong start writing wise. Five books off the old TBR!