4 star, YA

Review: Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo

Six of Crows #1

Ketterdam: a bustling hub of international trade where anything can be had for the right price—and no one knows that better than criminal prodigy Kaz Brekker. Kaz is offered a chance at a deadly heist that could make him rich beyond his wildest dreams. But he can’t pull it off alone. . . .

A convict with a thirst for revenge

A sharpshooter who can’t walk away from a wager

A runaway with a privileged past

A spy known as the Wraith

A Heartrender using her magic to survive the slums

A thief with a gift for unlikely escapes

Kaz’s crew is the only thing that might stand between the world and destruction—if they don’t kill each other first.

Okay, I know I know, I’m suuuper late to this party, but I’m glad I arrived – better late than never! But honestly I’m so glad Andge made me dive into this one, as I always love a good heist and boy was this a wild journey. Andge felt that this was more of a 3.5 Drink Me Potions for her, based on the hype around this series at her time of reading. I’m rating it a little higher at 4, since this particular story resonates more with my style. While I can’t speak for both of us, here is my review!

Six of Crows follows a motley crew of criminals, or at least sketchy individuals, as they embark on a seemingly impossible heist for a tantalizing amount of money. Each character brings their own unique set of skills to help in the heist, as well as a plethora of secrets that emerge around every bend. The story takes place over multiple POVs, and each chapter features a different character’s perspective. The author takes us on the whole journey, from forming the unlikely alliance all the way to the results of the heist, also giving intriguing and mysterious backstory along the way. Overall such a suspenseful and exciting adventure!

Easily my favourite element of this novel was the suspense of the heist. Yes, I expect the heist to be somewhat successful, or at least what story is there to write about? But the whole journey there, the twists, the turns, the betrayals, the betrayal betrayals, who knew what was going to happen? I thought I had a fairly good prediction of what I would see, yet I was still surprised at some elements, which is always a nice perk for me when reading any novel.

Continue reading “Review: Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo”
4 star, YA

ARC Review: Don’t Breathe a Word by Jordyn Taylor

Present Day:
Eva has never felt like she belonged… not in her own family or with her friends in New York City, and certainly not at a fancy boarding school like Hardwick Preparatory Academy. So when she is invited to join the Fives, an elite secret society, she jumps at the opportunity to finally be a part of something.

But what if the Fives are about more than just having the best parties and receiving special privileges from the school? What if they are also responsible for keeping some of Hardwick’s biggest secrets buried?

There is only one reason why Connie would volunteer to be one of the six students to participate in testing Hardwick’s nuclear fallout shelter: Craig Allenby. While the thought of nuclear war sends her into a panic, she can’t pass up the opportunity to spend four days locked in with the school’s golden boy. However, Connie and the other students quickly discover that there is more to this “test” than they previously thought. As they are forced to follow an escalating series of commands, Connie realizes that one wrong move could have dangerous consequences.

Separated by sixty years , Eva’s and Connie’s stories become inextricably intertwined as Eva unravels the mystery of how six students went into the fallout shelter all those years ago . . . but only five came out.

**Don’t Breathe a Word comes out May 18, 2021**

Thank you Edelweiss and HarperCollins for this copy in exchange for an honest review

Don’t Breathe a Word is another successful story that combines dual POVs across different timelines that mesh together in a compelling read. In the present day, Eva finds herself sent off to a private boarding school literally last minute (thanks, mean family). Trying to fit into a crowd that has grown up together since the fifth grade is super tough. Enter a group who IS willing to take her under their wing. Little does she know, this group functions more like a secret society than a regular bunch of friends. The question is, are they harmless or are they hiding something more sinister?

Continue reading “ARC Review: Don’t Breathe a Word by Jordyn Taylor”
4 star, YA

Review: The Gilded Ones by Namina Forna

Series: Deathless #1

Sixteen-year-old Deka lives in fear and anticipation of the blood ceremony that will determine whether she will become a member of her village. Already different from everyone else because of her unnatural intuition, Deka prays for red blood so she can finally feel like she belongs.

But on the day of the ceremony, her blood runs gold, the color of impurity–and Deka knows she will face a consequence worse than death.

Then a mysterious woman comes to her with a choice: stay in the village and submit to her fate, or leave to fight for the emperor in an army of girls just like her. They are called alaki–near-immortals with rare gifts. And they are the only ones who can stop the empire’s greatest threat.

Knowing the dangers that lie ahead yet yearning for acceptance, Deka decides to leave the only life she’s ever known. But as she journeys to the capital to train for the biggest battle of her life, she will discover that the great walled city holds many surprises. Nothing and no one are quite what they seem to be–not even Deka herself.

This one has been floating around the YA sphere even before it published recently and I can see where all the hype is coming from for it is very well deserved. The Gilded Ones is a female-empowering story that show girls are not only worth more than a subservient role in a patriarchal society, but they are strong and will fight until another day to survive.

Deka was raised in the Northern area of the kingdom although her appearance resembles that of her mother, a Southerner. Already deemed different in this way alone, she’d always wanted to fit in. The Ritual of Purity for every girl come of age would determine if they were pure or impure based on the colour of their blood. Deka was determined to fit in and finally be approved by her village. Of course, nothing goes as planned right?

Continue reading “Review: The Gilded Ones by Namina Forna”