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.

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5 star, YA

Review: Legendary by Stephanie Garber

Caraval #2

A heart to protect. A debt to repay. A game to win.

After being swept up in the magical world of Caraval, Donatella Dragna has finally escaped her father and saved her sister, Scarlett, from a disastrous arranged marriage. The girls should be celebrating, but Tella isn’t yet free. She made a desperate bargain with a mysterious criminal, and what Tella owes him no one has ever been able to deliver: Caraval Master Legend’s true name.

The only chance of uncovering Legend’s identity is to win Caraval, so Tella throws herself into the legendary competition once more—and into the path of the murderous heir to the throne, a doomed love story, and a web of secrets…including her sister’s. Caraval has always demanded bravery, cunning, and sacrifice, but now the game is asking for more. If Tella can’t fulfill her bargain and deliver Legend’s name, she’ll lose everything she cares about—maybe even her life. But if she wins, Legend and Caraval will be destroyed forever…

Welcome, welcome to Caraval . . . the games have only just begun.

I just absolutely love this series. Andge is completely with me here on the 5 Drink Me Potions rating, and there is just no denying it. Something about the magic of Caraval just sucks you right back in for round two, this time with Scarlett’s sister, Donatella.

Mysterious, dark, intriguing and beguiling are all terms I would use to describe the magic of Caraval and just being in this world that Garber has created. Even though this second adventure follows more of the story behind Legend and his magic, we still get to experience all the magic and mystique of the Caraval game itself.

Legendary, as its name might suggest, delves further into the backstory of Legend, through the eyes of Donatella, Scarlett’s sister. Having been the prize in the previous game, she had not participated in the game itself last time. This time, another Caraval is put on for Elantine the Empress’s 75th birthday, and yet another grand prize is awaiting the winner. Donatella, of course, has all her own motives as well for wanting to participate this year, and in this journey, the stakes get higher and higher as she uncovers more and more of the truth.

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3.5 star, YA

ARC Review: Take Me Home Tonight by Morgan Matson

Ferris Bueller’s Day Off meets Nick and Nora’s Infinite Playlist in this romp through the city that never sleeps from the New York Times bestselling author of Since You’ve Been Gone, Morgan Matson.

Two girls. One night. Zero phones.

Kat and Stevie—best friends, theater kids, polar opposites—have snuck away from the suburbs to spend a night in New York City. They have it all planned out. They’ll see a play, eat at the city’s hottest restaurant, and have the best. Night. Ever. What could go wrong?

Well. Kind of a lot?

They’re barely off the train before they’re dealing with destroyed phones, family drama, and unexpected Pomeranians. Over the next few hours, they’ll have to grapple with old flames, terrible theater, and unhelpful cab drivers. But there are also cute boys to kiss, parties to crash, dry cleaning to deliver (don’t ask), and the world’s best museum to explore.

Over the course of a wild night in the city that never sleeps, both Kat and Stevie will get a wake-up call about their friendship, their choices…and finally discover what they really want for their future. 

That is, assuming they can make it to Grand Central before the clock strikes midnight.

**Take Me Home Tonight comes out May 4, 2021!**

Thank you Netgalley and Simon Schuster Canada for this copy in exchange for an honest review

Let me first start off by saying, “phew, what a wild ride!” this book truly was. It took a little warming up to at first but by the end of the night, it was like we went down a very long journey with each girl. Take Me Home Tonight lives up to the Ferris Bueller theme as besties Stevie and Kat journey into the heart of the city on their own with hardly a soul knowing where they were up to. This is a story about friendship (the best of kinds), facing what is holding you back, and being able to grow from these things instead of letting it tear you back down. While it may focus on two teenage girls, I do think the themes here teach a great lesson for any age.

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