Kingdom of Ash

Title: Kingdom of Ash
Author: Sarah J. Maas
Series: Throne of Glass, 7/7
Genre: Fantasy, YA
Publisher: Bloomsbury YA
Release Date: October 23rd, 2018

Note: This post reviews the seventh and final book of the Throne of Glass series. You may like to read the first six books in the series, Throne of Glass, Crown of MidnightHeir of Fire, Queen of Shadows, Empire of Storms, and Tower of Dawn before reading this review.

Additional Note: Though this series is considered to be Young Adult, I consider the sexual content in Kingdom of Ash to be more New Adult than Young Adult. 

In this final installment of the Throne of Glass series, Aelin Galathynius, the true queen of Terrasen, fights to save all of Erilea from the ancient evil of the Valg. Even though she is held prisoner for months by Maeve, the Queen of the Fae and Aelin’s aunt, Aelin refuses to break. She stays strong for those she loves and to her cause to destroy Maeve and the Valg.

Meanwhile, her Fae mate, Rowan, fights ceaselessly to save Aelin from her living hell. The rest of her friends and allies, including Aedion, Lysandra, Chaol, Dorian, and Manon, all have their own battles to fight across Erilea. Unexpected friendships are formed and previous relationships solidified, while others are severed forever. In the end, all are united in one common cause – to destroy the Valg once and for all and seal the gate so that none can ever return. As they fight to save all of Erilea, it will cost Aelin and her friends everything. For some of them, their very lives.

This final book was the best of the series. Well done, Sarah J. Maas, for wrapping it up in such a satisfying way. You did your characters and your readers justice.

If you enjoyed this review, please consider following Reads & Roses. It would mean the world to have you on my team!

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War Storm

Title: War Storm
Author: Victoria Aveyard
Series: Red Queen, 4/4
Genre: Dystopian, Fantasy, Romance, YA
Publisher: Harper Teen
Release Date: May 15th, 2018

Note: This post reviews the fourth and final book of the Red Queen series. You may like to read the first three books in the series, Red Queen, Glass Sword, and King’s Cage, before reading this review. 

Mild spoilers.

The ending of the third book of the series, King’s Cage, left us just as brokenhearted as Mare Barrow. When Cal ultimately chooses his crown over the girl he loves, Mare (and the Scarlet Guard) must continue to fight for what they have all been working toward – taking Maven down. And the only way to take down the prince who nearly broke her is to side with the prince who broke her heart.

But this rebellion is bigger than just a messed up love triangle, and always has been. The future of Norta, and the kingdoms surrounding it, is at stake. Will the Reds rise together as the dawn and defeat the Silver oppression once and for all, or will they be so defeated that they will never rise again?

Believe me when I say that I wanted to love this series – instead, I lost all interest in it after the first book. There were some good parts to this book that I really enjoyed. But the series overall dragged on and on. I had a hard time remembering what was happening, who some people were, and why I liked the series to begin with.

If you enjoyed this review, please consider following Reads & Roses. It would mean the world to have you on my team!

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A Court of Frost and Starlight

Title: A Court of Frost and Starlight
Author: Sarah J. Maas
Series: A Court of Thorns and Roses series, a novella
Genre: Fantasy, NA, Romance, YA
Publisher: Bloomsbury
Release Date: May 1st, 2018

Note: This post reviews a novella of the A Court of Thorns and Roses series. You may like to read the first three books in the series, A Court of Thorns and Roses, A Court of Mist and Fury, and A Court of Wings and Ruin before reading this review. 

Additional Note: I would like to emphasize that this series is written more toward the New Adult genre than the Young Adult genre. Because the NA genre focuses on protagonists in the 18-30 age range, the content, especially the sexual content and the language, is much more mature than the average YA novel. 

Let me begin by saying that I really do like this series. But this novella was disappointing.

What bothered me about A Court of Frost and Starlight was the utter lack of plot.

I’m serious. Nothing. Happened. When I think back to this book, I remember the characters planning a party, shopping for gifts, exchanging gifts, having conversations, and – oh yeah, it’s Maas – having sex. I do not think this makes for a good book, not even a good novella. There was no tension, no suspense, no plot.

The one thing this book had going for it was – the best part of this series! – the characters. I love Feyre, Rhys, Cassian, Nesta, and the rest – but… having great characters who simply interact with each other on the page, no matter how much we love them, is not enough.

Having said this, if you plan to continue with the series, you should probably not skip this novella. It sets the reader up – barely – for what is to come, mostly concerning Nesta. The last ten pages of the book – the sneak peak of what is to come – offered more to the reader than the 250-page novella.

If you enjoyed this review, please consider following Reads & Roses. It would mean the world to have you on my team!

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Blog Tour for Happily!

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I’m very excited to share this week’s post with you! It’s not one of my usual book reviews. Instead, I will be participating in a blog tour for Happily, a book by one of my writing friends, Chauncey Rogers. Some of you might remember seeing my review of Happily back in February. In case you missed it, you can read it here.

I have the honor of wrapping up the blog tour today! In the blurb below, Chauncey talks about a fun song he would pick for an “Ending Credits Song,” for when the book will be adapted into a movie (as we all hope it will!). I hadn’t actually heard this song before now, but I love it. It’s a perfect fit, even if the shoe isn’t!

Happily Book Cover - Recommended
Thank you, Rosie, for letting me end my blog tour on your lovely blog!

I suspect that most people who write stories dream of the day that their story might be turned into a movie. I don’t know about other authors, but I particularly enjoy daydreaming about what song might be used for the “Ending Credits Song.” I’m not sure why that is. It might just be because some of my favorite songs have been used as ending credits songs, or because some of my favorite movies also have wonderful ending credits songs.

Whatever it is, it’s something I enjoy thinking about, whether or not the day ever comes.


As this is the end of the blog tour, I thought it might be appropriate to share an “Ending Credits Song” here, as well as to thank everyone who has participated.
Thank you, each and every one. This has been a great experience for me, and I hope it has been equally wonderful for the rest of you.

Now, as for the ending credits song, I will admit that I didn’t choose this song out personally. Instead, my mother happened to hear it being played while she was out shopping. She’d recently finished reading Happily, and felt that this song would make a wonderful ending credits song.

So, without further ado, I give you “I Believe in You” by Michael Bublé:

Thank you! And until next time, I wish you only the very best.

Chauncey Rogers

Chauncey Rogers - Optional


Happily
on GoodReads
Purchase Happily on Amazon!

Day 13 of 13 of Happily’s Release Blog Tour. See the full blog tour schedule here.

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Tower of Dawn

Title: Tower of Dawn
Author: Sarah J. Maas
Series: Throne of Glass series, book 6
Genre: Fantasy, YA
Publisher: Bloomsbury
Release Date: September 5th, 2017

Note: This post reviews the sixth book of the Throne of Glass series. You may like to read the first five books in the series, Throne of Glass, Crown of MidnightHeir of Fire, Queen of Shadows, and Empire of Storms before reading this review.

This sixth installment in the Throne of Glass series follows not Aelin, but Chaol Westfall in a journey of his own. After narrowly escaping with his life in the devastating finale of Empire of Storms, Chaol – no longer Captain of the Royal Guard but Hand to the newly crowned King Dorian – travels with Nesryn Faliq – newly appointed Captain of the Royal Guard – to the Southern Continent to the city of Antica, in hopes of gaining aid from the Great Khagan for the war in Erilea. But that is just part of their quest.

Chaol is hopeful of finding someone in the prestigious Torre Cesme who can heal the paralysis in his legs, a result of the wounds he suffered. But the most skilled healer, Yrene Towers, may prove difficult to convince. Having suffered at the hands of Adarlan, she wants nothing to do with this young Hand to the King, even though she has taken an oath to help those in need. Will Chaol find a way to help himself, and the people he cares for in Erilea?

This book was a bit slow for me, and I didn’t get sucked in the way I did with Aelin’s story.

If you enjoyed this review, please consider following Reads & Roses. It would mean the world to have you on my team!

Reads and Roses is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to amazon.com.

Happily

Title: Happily
Author: Chauncey Rogers
Genre: Fairytale, Fantasy, MG, YA
Publisher: self published
Release Date: April 3rd, 2018

No fairy godmother. No magic pumpkin.
Just one grumpy girl and a glass slipper.

Note: I received a free e-copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. If you are a book reviewer, feel free to request a copy of your own in the comments below in exchange for a review. 

Let me begin by saying that I have read my fair share of fairytale retellings, and the timeless tale of Cinderella is no exception. I can honestly say that I have never come across one quite like this. Happily is narrated in modern-day language by the heroine of this story – and it is not Cinderella, as you might have expected, but Laure – a rough-around-the-edges girl who lives on the streets and steals to get by.

When a royal decree announces that the crown prince will marry whichever girl can fit a mysterious glass slipper, Laure sees it as her chance to make something of her lowly life. Even though she thinks the entire royal family is ridiculous and pompous, she decides to do whatever it takes to make that glass slipper fit. She embarks on her quest and teams up with Luc, a boy from her city who becomes an unexpected ally. Their quest takes them to another kingdom and back again, with no small amount of struggle and danger along the way. Though they were bent on disliking each other from the beginning, they reluctantly begin to form a friendship, possibly even something more. Will Laure make a decision to follow her head, or ultimately follow her heart, no matter the risk? And what about Cinderella anyway?

This was fun spin-off of a classic, well-loved tale. I would recommend Happily to YA fans of fairytale retellings (such as myself). Just be ready for a quirkier version than what you have seen before, with sass to spare.

If you enjoyed this review, please consider following Reads & Roses. It would mean the world to have you on my team!

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Hello, 2018!

Happy New Year, everyone! I’m sorry I didn’t make my weekly post on Monday (and I haven’t missed a Monday since I started about 16 months ago!), but at least I am posting this week. I was partying too hard welcoming in the new year. (And when I say “partying” I mean “Disneying!”)

As we all turn our attention on the new year, I wanted to share with you some of the books that I am anxiously awaiting to hit the shelves this year. Here are my top YA books for 2018!

A Court of Frost and Starlight, book 4 of the A Court of Thorns and Roses series – May 2018

War Storm, book 4 of the Red Queen series – May 2018

The Orphan’s Wish, book 8 of Hagenheim series – June 2018

Throne of Glass book 7 (Untitled) – Fall 2018

Are any of these books on your To Read list too?

Reads and Roses is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to amazon.com.