Shadow of the Fox by Julie Kagawa (eARC review)



TITLE: Shadow of the Fox

AUTHOR: Julie Kagawa

RELEASED: November 2nd 2018 by

GENRE: Teens + YA Fantasy

First of all… look at those covers! Aren’t they stunning? Which is your favourite? Red = US/Green = UK. I prefer the green, but only slightly..

Now. Unpopular opinion alert!

I was so excited for this book! Everyone I know has been chatting it up, so I was SURE I’d love it. Not the case. I didn’t hate it, but it definitely isn’t top 10 material for me. I found the plot to be extremely slow and a bit tiresome. Tatsumi was extremely boring, even though he was the demonslayer. There just didn’t seem to be much to him in regards to character development or personality… I did love Yumeko. She was wildly hilarious and just someone you’d love to be friends with. Yumeko and the ragtag crew she collects along her journey are totally what redeemed this for me. I enjoyed parts of the book, but I wouldn’t be mad to finish the series to be entirely honest. Hoping book two is a whole lot better than this…

One thousand years ago, the great Kami Dragon was summoned to grant a single terrible wish—and the land of Iwagoto was plunged into an age of darkness and chaos.

Now, for whoever holds the Scroll of a Thousand Prayers, a new wish will be granted. A new age is about to dawn.

Raised by monks in the isolated Silent Winds temple, Yumeko has trained all her life to hide her yokai nature. Half kitsune, half human, her skill with illusion is matched only by her penchant for mischief. Until the day her home is burned to the ground, her adoptive family is brutally slain and she is forced to flee for her life with the temple’s greatest treasure—one part of the ancient scroll.

There are many who would claim the dragon’s wish for their own. Kage Tatsumi, a mysterious samurai of the Shadow Clan, is one such hunter, under orders to retrieve the scroll…at any cost. Fate brings Kage and Yumeko together. With a promise to lead him to the scroll, an uneasy alliance is formed, offering Yumeko her best hope for survival. But he seeks what she has hidden away, and her deception could ultimately tear them both apart.

With an army of demons at her heels and the unlikeliest of allies at her side, Yumeko’s secrets are more than a matter of life or death. They are the key to the fate of the world itself.

New from the New York Times bestselling author of The Talon Saga and The Iron Fey. Fans of Sarah J. Maas, Julie C. Dao, Marie Lu, Cassandra Clare and more bestselling YA fantasy will be captivated by book one of this enchanting new series.

Thank you so much to Harlequin Teen via Netgalley for providing me with an ARC.

Not Even Bones by Rebecca Schaeffer (ARC review)


TITLE: Not Even Bones

AUTHOR: Rebecca Schaeffer

RELEASED: September 4th 2018 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt

GENRE: Teens + YA Fantasy

Nita wasn’t sure why she laughed. It wasn’t a normal laugh, it was a little high-pitched and hysterical. She was standing in a room full of dying people, asking someone to torture a crime lord so she can steal his money. When has this happened? How had her life ended up like this?

Can you imagine a world in which monsters roam free as part of society? Welcome to Nita’s life. Not Even Bones is the book I didn’t even know I wanted! I loved every single minute of this. It was completely refreshing to read a book that isn’t cut and dried black and white moral choices. There are many times Nita and other characters have to make a decision between bad and worse. It definitely isn’t your average monster story.

A note from the author: “Many will call my main characters monsters. Many will call them villains.

They would be right.

I wrote this book for the people who watched movies as children and screamed, “why don’t you just kill the bad guy already???” For the people who watched heroes proselytize on screen and said, “It’s not that simple.” For the people who watched the villains with fascination and whispered softly, where the normal, good, proper people wouldn’t hear, “I want to see their story.”

This, my friends, is their story.

If you’re still interested, then, please, crack open the cover and delve into the darkness. But you’ve been warned.

Here be monsters. “

She imagined sliding the scalpel through his flesh, how there would be resistance, and then it would come easy once it had parted. Like the surface tension of water.

The imagery and description put you right there alongside Nita THE WHOLE WAY through her journey! Very gory and delightfully dark, we’re shown the darkness that lives inside monsters both with their unique sets of morals, and those without. I found myself cheering on several different characters, and totally engrossed with the story. Nita has standards which she lives by, until she’s thrust into the trade as a commodity, rather than an outsider. She thinks she knows what’s happening, but, along her journey of self-discovery, finds that things aren’t as they’ve always seemed…

Slowly, piece by piece, she went through the full dissection until there was nothing left unpackaged or unlabeled. Not even bones.

Then, when I thought this was going to be a standalone, I read that cliffhanger! I gasped many times throughout the story, but that knocked the breath right out of me.. What could possibly come next?! Schaeffer has left me with some questions, and I can’t wait to read book 2!

Dexter meets This Savage Song in this dark fantasy about a girl who sells magical body parts on the black market — until she’s betrayed.

Nita doesn’t murder supernatural beings and sell their body parts on the internet—her mother does that. Nita just dissects the bodies after they’ve been “acquired.” But when her mom brings home a live specimen, Nita decides she wants out — dissecting living people is a step too far.

But when she tries to save her mother’s victim, she ends up sold on the black market in his place — because Nita herself is a supernatural being. Now Nita is on the other side of the bars, and there is no line she won’t cross to escape and make sure no one can ever capture her again.

Nita did a good deed, and it cost her everything. Now she’s going to do a lot of bad deeds to get it all back.

Thank you so much to Houghton Mifflin Harcourt for providing me with an ARC. All quotes are taken from an ARC and may not match the final release.

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Mask of Shadows by Linsey Miller


TITLE: Mask of Shadows

AUTHOR: Linsey Miller

RELEASED: August 29th 2017 by Sourcebooks Fire

GENRE: Teens + YA Fantasy/Sci-Fi

I Needed to Win.
They Needed to Die.

Sallot Leon is a thief, and a good one at that. But gender fluid Sal wants nothing more than to escape the drudgery of life as a highway robber and get closer to the upper-class—and the nobles who destroyed their home.

When Sal steals a flyer for an audition to become a member of The Left Hand—the Queen’s personal assassins, named after the rings she wears—Sal jumps at the chance to infiltrate the court and get revenge.

But the audition is a fight to the death filled with clever circus acrobats, lethal apothecaries, and vicious ex-soldiers. A childhood as a common criminal hardly prepared Sal for the trials. And as Sal succeeds in the competition, and wins the heart of Elise, an intriguing scribe at court, they start to dream of a new life and a different future, but one that Sal can have only if they survive.

This was an interesting novel to read. You know how sometimes you pick up a book based on the cover, dive right in without reading the synopsis, and just get totally swept away? Yeah, that was this book for me.

There is a lot going on in this novel that, as a cis female person, I just do not feel comfortable deconstructing and discussing for various reasons, but I loved that this was a different /and complex/ storyline. I loved Sal so much. The confidence they emit throughout the novel is refreshing, but the sense of not belonging is necessary for the progression of the plot. Their need to avenge Nacea drives them without controlling their entire life. I loved the interactions between Sal and other characters because Sal’s sense of humour is unique and a bit gory sometimes. I was a bit shocked at a few stages throughout the novel, but loved it still. It’s not often I’m shocked by YA fantasy novels!

blinked back tears and sniffed. I still loved her. But I did not trust her.

The romance was also pretty sweet, but not the main focus of, or even necessary to, the plot. It’s the first time I’ve ever read this particular kind of romance, but I felt it was well done.

I was also lucky enough to have Ruin of Stars waiting for me to dive in after I finished this, so that review still be up soon!!

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