Saturday, September 16, 2017

The Breaking Light by Heather Hansen



Ugh. Let's get this over with. This one was really, really a chore this time people! I'm not kidding. It took force to get myself through this one. Not only is it painfully boring, not only is it contrived, but it doesn't even try to hide the fact that it's just a retelling of one of the oldest and most well known stories of all time...IN SPAAAACE! Let's begin.

Arden is a drug dealing gangster living in Undercity, the part of a colonized city on the surface of...I don't know, some planet that's not Earth, where the sun never shines and everyone is suffering. Dade is a privileged son of the Higher Levels, where he lives in the lap of luxury but has his fate controlled by his family. Both Arden's gang and Dade's family are caught in a desperate conflict for control of the city, destroying each other over the coveted sun drug VitD and both sides have vowed to destroy each other...which makes it most inconvenient when Arden and Dade fall madly in love with each other.

Yeah, you'll notice a lot of little things start to pop up in this story that seem oddly familiar. Two feuding families, a boy and a girl from each falling in love, a friendly holy man who tries to help them, them meeting up at a masquerade party....figure it out yet? Yup. This is Romeo and Juliet in space. The book does whatever it can to try and hide that too. This time it's Romeo who is running from an arranged marriage and Juliet who ends up killing people. Now, I wouldn't mind if this was just a retelling of Romeo and Juliet. I wouldn't mind it at all...if it weren't for the fact that the book would just admit that it was a retelling! I've looked at several different descriptions about this thing and nowhere does it just admit that this is Romeo and Juliet in space! Nowhere! Also, if you're going to make a retelling of a story this famous at least try and be subtle about it. I could never accept this as its own thing because it was so painfully, blatantly obvious that I just got distracted by the obvious rip-off scenes happening all over the place. Except for that piece of crap ending, but I'll get to that later....

Despite it being a rip off of Shakespeare of all things, this book has a ton of other problems. The instalove in this book is just laughable. Page one, page fricking one, she has a knife to his throat and all they can think about is how hot the other person is! Every second they are not in each others company, they are pining for each other. They constantly worry about each other and dwell on each other and think of how they can save each other...and they've only had one conversation in which they shared nothing about each other. Yeah, they know absolutely nothing about each other, they don't really have anything in common, and yet they are unbelievably and inexplicably in love with each other and go on and on about it ridiculously written, gag-inducing prose. Even as a Romeo and Juliet retelling this...does...not...work! It's silly and so unbelievably stupid that we can't take the main characters seriously. Nobody falls in love like this. In a play, you only have so much time to start a romance but in a novel you can take your time and develop them! This kind of crap just makes your characters look like idiots and we can't get behind their relationship.

Also, the plot tries to clash the play's story with that of a tired, deeply cliche dystopian story that we've heard a thousand times the same way. Plus, you knew exactly which roles certain characters play in the book. You have the sassy gay friend (or cousin or whatever), you have the muscle who helps the boy, you have the conniving mean girl, it's all so tired and I just couldn't give a crap about any of them. Heck, I don't think that the muscle guy even has more than five lines in this thing and we're still supposed to care about him. If you know the play, which everyone does, and you are familiar with YA cliches, which a lot of people do, it comes together to form a story that nothing but formulaic and boring! I was unbelievably bored looking into this book. Nothing came as a surprise. No plot twist or character death was felt in this thing. I didn't care about anyone or anything and that was the biggest problem with the book.

Now...let's get to the ending. I don't feel like this deserves it but, I'll put a spoiler warning up just in case anyway...

*SPOILER ALERT* So, death plays a big part in the story of Romeo and Juliet. Heck, everyone knows the iconic ending of the play. In the context of that play, the deaths of Romeo and Juliet is a bitter lesson for the two families and they see just how destructive their feud is and how the tragedy is a warning of the mixture of pride and adolescence. Here, however....all that significance is thrown straight out the window for the heroic and super dumb YA ending where the deaths were just fake outs and the two main characters brace themselves for an obvious sequel. That's right, this Romeo and Juliet retelling...has a sequel. That's stupid. It's all stupid! This book is so unbelievably STUPID! Romeo and Juliet is a TRAGEDY! It's right there in the frigging TITLE! It's not about ultimate love, it's about how pride and youth are a dangerous combination and, if not handled properly, can have horrible consequences! But this piece of tripe, it's bland love that saves the day...except not really because their families are still fighting and how they have nowhere to go. These two lovers still know absolutely nothing about each other except how frigging in love they are and I just...just...arrgh! This ending just pissed me off like you wouldn't believe! *END OF SPOILERS*

Final Verdict
I absolutely hated this book. I don't even like Romeo and Juliet all that much and this made it even worse! Seriously folks, it's a waste of time. If you have any interest at all in this thing, just pick up Shakespeare and throw this thing where it belongs in the Waste Bin of Despair!

Have you read the book? What did you think? Comment below and share your thoughts. Have a book you'd like me to read or would like to make a recommendation? Contact me on goodreads at https://www.goodreads.com/user/show/65448711-michelle-beer

Next Time: I have got to get me...one of each of these weapons because these are legit!

Monday, September 11, 2017

Ruined by Amy Tintera



While I'm glad that Game of Thrones and other such stories have breathed new life into fantasy epics in this modern time, it can be both a blessing and a curse. The blessing is we get new and innovative ideas and brand new adventures involving politics and intrigue and danger, while the curse is getting boring tripe like this dished out to us. Let's just dive in.

Emelina Flores has lost her kingdom and her family to the neighboring kingdom of Lera. Hoping for a chance to save her only family left, her sister Olivia, she infiltrates the Lera kingdom disguised as the princess their prince is meant to marry. As the prince's betrothed Em can save what's left of her people, the powerful Ruined race, rescue her sister, and bring justice to the kingdom that caused her so much grief. It is unfortunate, therefore, that her new husband is kind and thoughtful and just a wonderful person and she starts to develop real feelings for him while also planning the destruction of his whole family.

Now, the concept has promise, it really does. That's why I picked this book up to begin with. There was hope for this book. Sadly, that hope just goes straight out the window because the entire execution of this concept is so horribly BLAND! I'm sorry but...I was very bored throughout this whole thing. Nothing came as a surprise. Everything was predictable. Everything just...fell short! Em as a main character was crazy forgettable. The book tries to make her this big deal by making her tough and have her kill people and constantly think up plans on how she'd kill everyone in the room...but her personality is as vapid as they come. Oh, and she's a terrible spy! She can't help herself from saying things that the person she's imitating would never say. She goes out of her way to defend the Ruined and practically announces to everyone that she's a Ruined supporter...in a castle full of people who want the Ruined exterminated. Real smooth, lady.  Cas, the prince, is as generic as they come. He's raised in this family that openly hates the Ruined and yet he sympathizes with them and totally agrees with everything Em says. How can he be such a person when raised in an environment that teaches nothing but hate towards the Ruined? Because the plot said so, that's why.

If bland is the first word I'd use to describe this book, the second would be vague. This book can be incredibly vague about everything from geography to what exactly the Ruined can do. What are the Ruined powers, what exactly can they do or can't do....I have no bloody clue. Is it like telekinesis? Kind of. Some can control elements...I think? Yeah, we're given no inkling about different types of Ruined there are, what stages of power they possess, what's possible or impossible for them...nothing. And Em doesn't have any powers and is labeled as useless...why? Why is she useless? We don't know. We're never told. Also, there's a lot of talk about these different countries and how they are set up but...there's no map with this book. This book needs a map. Because I have no idea where they're going or which direction there is or how the land is set up. They start talking about Lera being set up in a jungle and...they never even mentioned it was in a jungle before. How far south is it compared to Vallos, it's supposed neighbor that's a two day carriage ride away, when Vallos is apparently a forest and has snow? Like I said. MAP!

Lastly, there's just not anything new in this book. It tries to be edgy and dark by killing characters and describing violence...but the violence happens offscreen (or off page or whatever) and the characters that are killed are ones we don't care about. This book clearly wanted to be mature...but not too mature. I held itself back and fit itself into YA standards that said we can't make it too grown up and scare away the teenage girls who could be made into potential Em/Cas shippers.

Final Verdict
Far too tame to be taken seriously, too predictable to be interesting, too little and way too late. I don't know, some people might like it but it's just not for me. If you really wanna check it out...then save your cash and check it out at your local library.

Have you read the book? What did you think? Comment below and share your thoughts. Have a book you'd like me to read or would like to make a recommendation? Contact me on goodreads at https://www.goodreads.com/user/show/65448711-michelle-beer

Next Time: For never has there been a tale of more woe than that of a drug dealer and her Shmomeo.

Thursday, September 7, 2017

The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern


Circus's aren't quite what they used to be, what with the Ringling Brothers Circus closing down a few months ago and such acts becoming scarcer and scarcer as years go by. However, if they were more like this place, I think they might just make a comeback. Morgenstern builds a world in which magic not only exists, but it's available to be viewed by the masses.

Le Cirque des Rêves is a fantastical world in which eager patrons can come and witness true magic without ever really knowing what they're seeing. The breathing carousel, the Ice Garden that never melts, the human statues, the lingering smell of caramel and popcorn all creates an amazing experience which some people can't seem to get enough of. But there is more going on at the Circus than they might think. The Cirque is a battleground in which two young illusionists, Celia and Marco, are pitted against one another by their mentors in a test of endurance to see which of the two of them will be victorious. But the binding of these two magicians creates a bond far beyond that of competitors and the Cirque and everyone involved in it are put in potential danger as the game becomes more and more dangerous.

The prose in this book is just astounding. The author's voice perfectly depicts the amazing feelings of being in the circus and the feats you see within it. The black-and-white Burtonesque feel that the circus has is portrayed very well in several second-person chapters in which you take a personal journey through the circus and guiding you through the experience. The descriptions of magic and what it does and can do in this world are also very interesting. You can bottle the sensation of being in a certain place, you can have your future read in the stars and your past read off your face, materials can reshape themselves into animals and you can see just how much magic can influence the circus.

As for the plot, the concept of it is certainly interesting. Celia is brought up by her arrogant father and Marco by the mysterious Mr. A.H. (unfortunate initials, I know) and yet find themselves coming together despite being pitted against one another. You quickly get a knack for these characters and what they can do and how they become an intricate part of the circus. Celia is kind but stubborn (especially in regards to her father) and doesn't take crap from people. Marco is clever and charming and can manipulate the circus without actually being there. There is a large cast of performers and managers that add a lot of color to the black-and-white circus, including an enigmatic contortionist, a pair of twin kitten tamers, and the eccentric owner Chandresh Christophe Lefèvre. I also really liked the idea of the rêveurs, a kind of cirque fan club that makes it their goal to follow the circus as often as possible.

The one complaint I've seen about this book is that the pacing was a bit too slow and, while I see where people are coming from in saying that, I didn't really have a problem with that. It is very Jonathan Strange & Mr. Norrell-esque in that it takes its time and develops a lot of characters and not just our two leads. The story at large takes place over roughly thirty years in the lives of Celia and Marco, before the Cirque even exists, and expands through to the end of the competition. While some might have hoped that magicians fighting would be a bombastic event full of magical explosions and such, I'm going to warn you right now that you won't be getting that (though there is at least one explosion). The magic in this book, while impressive, is also very subtle. It's meant to be the kind of thing that amazes muggle eyes yet is quiet enough that they can believe that it is just another deception. The tension as Celia and Marco grow closer to one another is palpable and requires time and energy, which this book gives. While Marco is very impressed with Celia the moment they meet, their romance takes years to develop, which is something that I value having read as many YA instal-love stories as I have.

Note: I certainly hope that this review does not warrant knife-throwing.

Final Verdict
This book promises magic and it gives it to us. Descriptions and prose that are positively palpable, an eccentric cast, a subtle and complex plot make this book definitely one for the Shelf of Recommendation!

Have you read the book? What did you think? Comment below and share your thoughts. Have a book you'd like me to read or would like to make a recommendation? Contact me on goodreads at https://www.goodreads.com/user/show/65448711-michelle-beer

Next time: Sometimes, love can just Ruin everything....

Sunday, September 3, 2017

Winemaker of the North by J.T. Williams



Don't let the title fool you: this isn't about fantasy characters getting tipsy and having fun. This is thrilling, enchanting, nail-biting, and surprisingly heartfelt fantasy adventure about a man learning to let go of what he's taught and daring to believe in what is right.

Sviska is an assassin, raised by the Order, to carry out their wishes and execute whomever they send him to. When one such assignment is botched, he is then sent on a "succeed-or-die" mission to the mysterious city of Elianthrond. In this city, magic, something he'd been raised to believe is blasphemy, runs rampant and he meets dwarves, elves, dragon tamers and many more. Sviska learns that he's to pose as their new winemaker, who is really more of a potion-brewer, to create a special wine to save the inhabitants from a curse threatening to destroy them all. Sviska quickly finds himself torn, unsure if he is to serve the Order he's been bound to all his life, or save the one place in all the world that has ever felt like home.

With the main character being an assassin, I was glad to see that there is more to Sviska as a character than just a heartless killing machine. He's very human, something most characters in this profession don't tend to be. He's curious, he's jumpy, he's polite, and he allows himself to feel lost and no longer in control when put in a situation he doesn't understand. He's a very realistic character that way, he's capable of realistic emotion and you feel as he does. I really enjoyed Sviska's character and was happy to be going through this journey with him.

The city and inhabitants of Elianthrond are also very well written. These creatures and the people who live in this place make for a great community. When you see just how devastating this curse is that afflicts them, you really come to feel for them and want them to get the help they need. Not to mention that certain aspects of this place are actually really cool. Priests are warriors, dragons are pets, mermaids and sirens are surprisingly helpful (unless you cross them), dwarves make great drinking buddies, ogres make awesome barbecue (not as suspicious as it sounds), it's just a really fun place. As Sviska falls in love with it and wants to help those who live there, you do as well. There's also a great mythological set up to this place. The history and mythos are well-established and you come to really feel for this place.

Now, those things being said, there were times when the tone suffered in this thing. There were long stretches of just relaxing or traveling and then lengthy battles that just kind of pop up. Still, I never felt lost as I can sometimes do when there is too much action or feel bored when things slow down. I was also a little worried in the beginning because this story could very easily gone through a "liar revealed" plot line where the person who isn't who they say they are is outed and all of a sudden they're a traitor and nobody listens to what they have to say, even if it'll save their lives (looking at you, A Bug's Life). Thankfully, while there is a tiny bit of that, it is resolved very quickly and mostly forgotten by the next chapter. You have no idea how grateful I was for this. The "liar revealed" is a story cliche that just drives me up the wall so to see it handled well just makes me happy.

The ending of the book did come off as a little rushed, trying to establish what is coming next in the series while wrapping up a pretty intense battle. They try to throw in a long, lost friend/rival that they never brought up before which could have used a bit more attention or foreshadowing or...anything really because it kind of came out of left field but, overall I felt it was a solid start to a series.

Final Verdict
Great world-building, a sympathetic yet strong lead, a lively ensemble, and an action packed plot made for quite the adventure in this book. If this is your thing, I'd say check it out because it's worth your money at your local bookstore!

Have you read the book? What did you think? Comment below and share your thoughts. Have a book you'd like me to read or would like to make a recommendation? Contact me on goodreads at https://www.goodreads.com/user/show/65448711-michelle-beer

Next Time: If this circus ever comes to town, shut up and take my money!

Tuesday, August 29, 2017

Nemesis by Brendan Reichs



Conspiracies, murder, catastrophic disasters...just another day in your average tiny tourist town, right? This book possesses intrigue the likes of which I've been missing for awhile now. I had no idea what was going on half the time and guessing these things just makes it all the more fun. Let's dive right in.

Min Wilder and Noah Livingston both have a serious problem. Every two years, on their even-year birthday, a man comes and kills them...only to have them awaken miles away, alive and completely unharmed. Both desperately crave answers, especially when things in their small town of Fire Lake get really out of control. Government agents invade and take over the town, adults start behaving mysteriously, natural disasters are slowly wiping out parts of the world, and a planet-killer asteroid called the Anvil could be on a collision course straight for earth.  Min and Noah are soon thrown into a chaotic world that they just don't understand and try and solve the mysteries of what his happening to the world or it could be then end of them all.

Sounds pretty intense, doesn't it? Well, it certainly is! The mystery and danger aspects of this book are its real selling point. It does a good job of keeping you in the dark without hoarding information and keeping things frustratingly cryptic. It knows just when to give and when to hold back. The dark tone of this book is also very well captured as you learn about the chaotic events taking place throughout the world. You feel the weight of all that is happening and you share the feeling of impending doom. Heck, the events in this book are supposed to take place later this year! I almost feel the need to stock up my disaster kit just in case these predictions turn out to be right (though, admittedly, the book didn't manage to correctly predict the gender of our current president).

The characters of Min and Noah work great as a pair of leading characters. Min lives in a trailer park and is generally a social outcast, but she's brave and possesses a strong sense of right and wrong and is able to stand up for herself. Noah is the richest kid in town and hangs with the school bullies, but he's timid and generally unable to stand up for himself or anyone else, even if he knows it is the right thing to do. As you learn about both of their experiences, how they both cope with being murdered year after year and how they've tried to escape it, you see how each of them became the person that they are. You see their experiences build them into who they ultimately are and you come to really know them and care about what happens to them.

Admittedly, I was enjoying the book a bit more in the first half of the book rather than the second half. It soon becomes more of a Lord of the Flies type story with the bullies reigning supreme and when the answers do start coming in...I'm not entirely sure they makes sense but it is still just the first book so, more answers are sure to come. It's still interesting seeing the lengths these people will go to in order to preserves life....wait a minute. Preserving life....oh my gosh! This could be a Scythe prequel! Reichs and Shusterman could be in cahoots with each other to make this a stealth prequel like Prometheus was for Aliens....and Split and Unbreakable are in the same universe...and Nilbog is Goblin spelled backwards....and the cake is a lie...and the Illuminati is real...and (takes a minute to compose)....maybe these conspiracies are starting to get to me.

Final Verdict
This book was a thrilling and intense ride. The mystery, the action, the suspense all come together in a tale about the end of the world and just how far the human race will go in the pursuit of extending life. While it has its ups and downs, I'd say that this book is totally worth your money at your local bookstore.

Have you read the book? What did you think? Comment below and share your thoughts. Have a book you'd like me to read or would like to make a recommendation? Contact me on goodreads at https://www.goodreads.com/user/show/65448711-michelle-beer

Next Time: A world in which drinking wine saves your life? Huh.

Friday, August 25, 2017

The Hundredth Queen by Emily R. King




You get a book for free with Amazon Prime, you think it looks interesting, you see it trending on Goodreads and so you decide, "Sure, why not? Should be good, right?" Well, nope. This was another tough one to get through, ladies and gentlemen. We are not out of the times of Wannabe books quite yet. Sure, we don't have as many WannabeTwilight books anymore but we are far, far away from escaping the WannabeHungerGames books any time soon. Let's just dive in.

Kalinda has lived all her life as an anonymous orphan in the Sisterhood temple, wanting only to live in peace with her best friend Jaya. But that doesn't look like it's going to happen because she's suddenly Claimed by the rajah of Tarachand to be his bride. But not just any bride, his one hundredth and final bride and queen who must compete for her place in the palace. But Kalinda's worries are only just beginning as she finds herself thrown into the midst politics and scheming and death matches and finding out just how super special awesome she is!

Yeah, I quickly lost patience with this thing. I'm not kidding about how they make it very, very clear that Mary-Sue...I mean, Kalinda is the most special-est of special people in the history of special. She's the rajah's champion, she's the reincarnation of a legendary queen, she's a Fire Bender (I know they're called bhutas in this world, but let's be honest, who do they think they're fooling?), she's the rarest kind of Bender it is possible to be, she's a long lost princess, etc. etc. Seriously, this book throws every cliche "secret history/origin" story at us to make sure we know that Kalinda is really, really important and stuff, okay? Oh, and let's not forget everybody thinks she's beautiful but she thinks she's plain and she's a weak fighter yet always manages to defeat people stronger than she is. Those are Rules To Creating Your Own Mary Sue one and two!

In fact, they throw every cliche at us that they can possibly think of. Kalinda falls in love with the very first man she sees ever (and I mean it, the very first man she meets), who is so generic and bland he loves her back instantly and has both the most unoriginal job (Captain of the Guard) and scent (sandalwood, why is it always sandalwood?). And of course she has to participate in a tournament where people praise her for doing absolutely nothing and we don't even meet the other 99 wives except the ones that we can lump into generic stereotypes like the gossiping, vain airhead stereotypes, the jealous "I want to kill you really bad" first wife stereotype and the "pregnant so she must be a nice person because all pregnant women are nice people"stereotype. I have just seen so many people just like this so many times the same way that it's hard to see them as anything new or original. They even have rebels with an untrustworthy leader that our noble hero clashes with because we can't just get this story frigging over with.

Because it follows such and obvious pattern, it's hard to find anything truly challenging or even new. I  could see just about every twist in this story coming. Nothing comes as a surprise. Character dies, called it. One person betrays another, called it. Oh this person is really dead, they're totally dead, you really have to believe me guys this person didn't make it, they are gone forever, dead as a doornail, cadaverific, oh wait no they're not, I friggin' called it! Plus it throws in these dark and grisly deaths and rapey moments (though not actual rape because that would be going too far) with the rajah and a recycled rebellion plot line that tries it's hardest to make the book seem more edgy and complex than it really is. Well, you're selling it, but I'm just not buying it book!

Final Verdict 
This book was a bit of a mess. It tried too hard to be other books and brought in almost nothing new or original. Our Mary-Sue main character is too perfect to be relatable, the love interest is bland, the plot is borrowed, I didn't fall for any of these plot twists (if you can call them that) and I'm putting this one right in the Waste Bin of Despair. 

Have you read the book? What did you think? Comment below and share your thoughts. Have a book you'd like me to read or would like to make a recommendation? Contact me on goodreads at https://www.goodreads.com/user/show/65448711-michelle-beer

Next Time: Stanger Things are happening in Fire Lake....

Saturday, August 19, 2017

Nine Princes in Amber by Roger Zelazny



It's amazing what you can find in a Recommendations category when you're bored and decided, "Huh, that looks interesting." I'd never heard of this book before an Audible browsing binge awhile ago but found it was a very fortunate find. Let's dive right in.

Before all of creation, there was Amber, the only true world. All other worlds are but Shadows, including ours. When Corwin wakes up on the Shadow world that is Earth with no idea as to who he is or what has happened to him, all he knows is that Amber calls to him. Corwin is one of fifteen original princes, now only nine remain, and all are vying for a chance to become the next king. As Corwin ventures deeper into Shadow and learns the truth of his destiny, the one thing he knows for sure is that it is his destiny to be the next ruler in Amber and he'd do whatever it takes to secure the throne for himself.

One thing that really stood out to me was that the writing of this story is very matter-of-fact. It really does feel like Corwin telling the story, as any first person narrative should. It actually starts almost Bourne Identity style with an amnesiac protagonist slowly figuring out that he's got impressive and deadly skills and wondering who the heck he is to know such things. However, it quickly delves into fantasy without preamble. It was almost a little shocking, the transition from one to another, but that was the desired affect and it was pulled off splendidly. However, the matter-of-fact style tended to lead to a lack of deep detail, especially once the fighting starts. There's a lot of "I did this" and "I stabbed one guy", etc. While some might complain that this takes away from affect and doesn't do much to help the readers be invested, I actually kind of liked it because it always felt like Corwin telling the story. It never broke character to wax poetic and I appreciated that. First person narratives aren't all told from the perspectives of master storytellers and I got that from this book. It stayed very much in character.

Speaking of character, Corwin is a very interesting protagonist. He's a delicate balance of positives and negatives. He fights brilliantly but he's also a bit of a liar (he fools those around him about his amnesia for an impressively long time). He's cocky and arrogant but also cares about the lives of those who support him. He doesn't give up, even when he's likely to lose. He's a glutton. He can feel pity and despair but has no problem leaving people behind. Just a very complex character who people can appreciate as being both flawed and powerful. That's what makes the clipped dialogue work so well. He puts the emphasis where he, as a character, feels it. He thinks very little of cutting down enemies in combat and so the combat scenes aren't dwelt on. When he's trying to spare the lives of his men, you want him to win and you sympathize with his plight. There's even a point in the book that was actually really hard to get through because Corwin is suffering and you feel the suffering with him. It was just incredibly done.

The rest of the cast is pretty interesting too. This royal family is full of manipulators and backstabbers and everyone has their own agenda. It's also pretty easy, despite there being nine brothers, to recognize them after awhile. Conniving Eric, timid Random, valiant Bleys, nobel Julian, everyone stood out. It's also clear that, when bonded together, these brothers make for a deadly force but they are so busy fighting amongst themselves that it's impossible to do so. Each one is greedy and wants to be king or else see the brother they know will give them comfort as king. The set up is full of political intrigue that people just eat up and, I admit, I did too.

But one of the best details of the book was the Shadow worlds. The descriptions of the multitudes of worlds and how they came to be and the creativity behind them is just amazing. It brings a great deal of scope to this universe, giving it that great fantasy vibe. From the underwater reflection of Amber called the Kingdom of Rebma (geddit?) to multicolored realms full of everything from dinosaurs to hairy people with the intelligence of high school freshmen (I laughed out loud at that one).

Final Verdict
This book was a very lucky find. A great main character, to-the-point dialogue that matched the personality of the narrator, a rich plot with great environment. Hard to believe I find two books in a row that are worthy of the Shelf of Recommendation!

Have you read the book? What did you think? Comment below and share your thoughts. Have a book you'd like me to read or would like to make a recommendation? Contact me on goodreads at https://www.goodreads.com/user/show/65448711-michelle-beer

Next Time: 99 wives to fight in a game, 99 wives to fight.....