Crown of Midnight

Title: Crown of Midnight
Author: Sarah J. Maas
Series: Throne of Glass series, book 2
Genre: Fantasy, YA
Publisher: Bloomsbury
Release Date: August 27th, 2013

Note: This post reviews the second book of the Throne of Glass series. You may like to read the first book in the series, Throne of Glass, before reading this review.

After winning the brutal contest and earning the position as the King’s Champion, assassin Celaena Sardothien only appears loyal to the king she serves. She plays the part the king demands of her, in hopes of finally attaining her freedom. Celaena is also being pulled in different directions by the ones she cares about most: the Crown Prince of Adarlan, Dorian, the Captain of the Guard, Choal, and her best friend, Nehemia, Princess of the threatened kingdom of Eyllwe. Since each of them have their own expectations of her, she struggles to decide where her trust, her loyalties, and her heart truly lie.   

But as she uncovers more and more of the king’s dark and powerful secrets, it becomes harder for Celaena to do his bidding, especially with her own secrets about who she is, secrets so dangerous that she trusts no one with them; secrets that could affect the future of everyone.

Sarah J. Maas is quickly becoming a new favorite author of mine. She drew me in first with her series A Court of Thorns and Roses, and is continuing to captivate me with her series, Throne of Glass. For some reason, this book was a little difficult for me to fully get into. I’m still enjoying this series, its characters, and the fantasy world, and I look forward to seeing where Celaena goes from here!

Click on the links below to get your copy of this book and the others in its series:

Throne of Glass

Title: Throne of Glass
Author: Sarah J. Maas
Series: Throne of Glass series, book 1
Genre: Fantasy, YA
Publisher: Bloomsbury
Release Date: August 7th, 2012

Celaena Sardothien is willing to do whatever it takes to buy back her freedom – even if it means selling herself to the same king who destroyed her family so many years ago. She accepts Prince Damian’s offer, agreeing to be his champion in a fight to become the king’s assassin. If she can beat the other champions in the competition, she will serve the King of Adarlan for four years, after which she will be given her freedom.

What her competition does not know is that she is really Adarlan’s Assassin, her name widely known across the land. No one could have thought that the most feared assassin is an 18-year-old girl. The only ones who know the truth are the king, Dorian, and Chaol (the Captain of the guard). Celaena and Chaol eventually have an understanding between them, and even a friendship; Celaena and Dorian begin to have something, as well. While she has nothing but contempt for the king, she feels differently about his son.

In this exciting first book of the series, we meet a strong heroine who is not afraid to fight for what she wants, a prince who wants to be more than what his father has become, and a guard who will protect, no matter the cost. This YA cross between Game of Thrones and Hunger Games drew me in immediately, and continued to hold my attention till the end. I look forward to continuing the journey with Celaena in the second book of the series, Crown of Midnight.

Click on the links below to get your copy of this book and the others in its series:

The Silent Songbird

Title: The Silent Songbird
Author: Melanie Dickerson
Series: Hagenheim / Fairy Tale Romance series, book 7
Genre: Christian, Fairytale, Historical, Romance, YA
Publisher: Zondervan
Release Date: November 8th, 2016

Note: Even though The Silent Songbird is the seventh in a series, it can be read as a stand-alone story, as with the other books in the series. However, the characters that are in this book are featured in some other stories, which is why I recommend staying in order.

A retelling of The Little Mermaid.

Evangeline, the ward of King Richard II, wants nothing more than to be free and to live her life outside the castle. And when the king decides that she will marry his closest advisor, a vile man at least twice her age, she knows she must seize whatever chance she has and flee the castle.

Pretending to be mute to keep herself unknown, she joins Wesley le Wyse and his small band of servants, heading back to their own village. She wishes she did not have to deceive Wesley, especially as she begins to form a friendship with him. But too much is at stake for her to reveal her identity now. Will she win her freedom, and find happiness with the man she loves, or will her ruse not be worth the all the deceit in the end?

I really enjoyed this retelling of The Little Mermaid! I haven’t actually read many retellings of the mute redhead with a fiery spirit, so this was a fun read. At this point, I am wondering if Melanie Dickerson has any more Hagenheim books up her sleeve? Maybe Aladdin, or Little Red Riding Hood, or something? Anything? I’m not ready for this series to come to an end!

Click on the links below to get your copy of this book and the others in its series:

The Golden Braid

Title: The Golden Braid
Author: Melanie Dickerson
Series: Hagenheim / Fairy Tale Romance series, book 6
Genre: Christian, Fairytale, Historical, Romance, YA
Publisher: Zondervan
Release Date: November 17th, 2015

Note: Even though The Golden Braid is the sixth in a series, it can be read as a stand-alone story, as with the other books in the series. However, the characters that are in this book are featured in some other stories, which is why I recommend staying in order.

A retelling of Rapunzel. 

Hagenheim, 1413

When sheltered Rapunzel receives another marriage proposal, her controlling and over-protective mother moves them to a new city, one where she hopes to better hide Rapunzel from unwelcome suitors. Rapunzel and her mother meet some trouble on the road, and are rescued by a knight – Sir Gerek – who is later rescued by Rapunzel, who knows a thing or two about knife throwing.

Wanting nothing better than to learn to read and write, Rapunzel begs Sir Gerek to teach her. Reluctantly, Sir Gerek agrees to educate her, despite the fact that they each find the other to be difficult. That is, until they realize that their feelings for each other are beginning to deepen. But will Rapunzel’s mother once again get in the way of her daughter’s happiness?

This book is an imaginative retelling of Rapunzel that felt new and fresh. If you are a fan of fairytales, this one is a must-read!

Click on the links below to get your copy of this book and the others in its series:

  
  

Friday Favorites: July

Happy first Friday of the month!

At the risk of sounding incredibly nerdy, I have been checking out USB flash drives (there, I said it) to use for the YA book I am currently writing. (Because how sad would it be to lose the 50,000+ words I have reached and NOT have a backup?)

I thought I would share with you the one that caught my eye and has me swooning (over a flash drive!) Here it is:

Isn’t this Message in a Bottle flash drive just the cutest? Perfect inspiration for any writer! And at 8GB, it’s only $7.99. Mine!

And now, for some honorable mentions:

For my fellow wine lovers out there, check out this wine cork flash drive keychain! This was definitely a consideration. This one is 16GB, priced at $10.26.

This skeleton key flash drive is romantic and antique. I love it. This one is 8GB, priced at $10.61.

For all you photographers out there, check out this camera and lens flash drive! This one is 8GB, priced at $10.98.

And finally, check out this sword flash drive! This one is 8GB, priced at $12.98.

There you have it! Flash drive fascination. So, which one was your favorite?

The Princess Spy

Title: The Princess Spy
Author: Melanie Dickerson
Series: Hagenheim / Fairy Tale Romance series, book 5
Genre: Christian, Fairytale, Historical, Romance, YA
Publisher: Zondervan
Release Date: November 4th, 2014

Note: Even though The Princess Spy is the fifth in a series, it can be read as a stand-alone story, as with the other books in the series. However, the characters that are in this book are featured in some other stories, which is why I recommend staying in order.

A retelling of The Frog Prince. 

Hagenheim, 1413

A romantic at heart, Margaretha has high hopes for her suitor, Lord Claybrook. But when Colin, an injured Englishman, arrives in Hagenheim claiming to be attacked by none other than Claybrook himself, Margaretha begins to doubt that her suitor’s motives are true. Because of Colin’s language barrier, he is unable to explain himself to anyone other than Margaretha, who alone speaks english.

As Margaretha befriends Colin and helps him recover, she decides to take a closer look at Claybrook. To her dismay, she begins to uncover his secret plot to overthrow her father, the Duke of Hagenheim, and realizes that the future of her family’s kingdom – and her own future with the man she truly loves – depend on her own stealth and resourcefulness.

I really enjoyed this book, though it was not obvious that it was a Frog Prince retelling. I thought it was fun getting to know Margaretha more, after reading stories about her mother and her brothers, too!

Click on the links below to get your copy of this book and the others in its series: