4 stars

Review: Last Sacrifice (Vampire Academy #6)


Last Sacrifice (Vampire Academy #6)
By Richelle Mead

Source: Library, paperback
Genres: Young Adult, Paranormal, Vampires, Romance

Goodreads Synopsis:
Rose Hathaway has always played by her own rules. She broke the law when she ran away from St. Vladimir's Academy with her best friend and last surviving Dragomir princess, Lissa. She broke the law when she fell in love with her gorgeous, off-limits instructor, Dimitri. And she dared to defy Queen Tatiana, leader of the Moroi world, risking her life and reputation to protect generations of dhampir guardians to come.
Now the law has finally caught up with Rose - for a crime she didn't even commit. She's in prison for the highest offense imaginable: the assassination of a monarch. She'll need help from both Dimitri and Adrian to find the one living person who can stall her execution and force the Moroi elite to acknowledge a shocking new candidate for the royal throne: Vasilisa Dragomir.
But the clock on Rose's life is running out. Rose knows in her heart the world of the dead wants her back...and this time she is truly out of second chances. The big question is, when your whole life is about saving others, who will save you?
Join Rose, Dimitri, Adrian, and Lissa in Last Sacrifice, the epic, unforgettable finale to Richelle Mead's international #1 bestselling Vampire Academy series.

I was so nervous to start this. The series is so long, and I was kind of disappointed that it was ending, but after this, I’m really satisfied. In hindsight, it was definitely time for the series to be ending though; I’ve felt like this in most of the books, as nothing was really happening. This is a series that I have really enjoyed, though I’m not too upset that it’s over now!

Although lots was happening in the beginning, I felt it was a bit pointless. Rose was searching for something that didn’t yet affect the story. I didn’t see the point in being so invested for her to find it, because it didn’t seem like it would make that much of a difference. I expected this to be a really epic conclusion (like in the ending of Shadow Kiss), but it really wasn’t like that, because of how slow paced it was at the start.

I liked Rose again in this. She wasn’t as good as in Shadow Kiss, but she completely sorted everyone out. She didn’t just help herself, but helped Lissa, and everyone else get out of the mess, that they had somehow got themselves in. Although, in this book she was still painstakingly choosing if she wanted Dimitri or Adrian, which got tiresome very quickly.

Overall, this was a really great end to the series. Everything fell into place perfectly, and it ended just as I had hoped it would. I know I will miss the series, but I’ve been given full closure. I’d definitely recommend Vampire Academy - it’s a really fun series, and although some books were a bit ‘iffy’ for me, I’ve really enjoyed it overall.

3.5 stars

Review: Spirit Bound (Vampire Academy #5)


Spirit Bound (Vampire Academy #5)
By Richelle Mead

Source: Library, paperback
Genres: Young Adult, Paranormal, Vampires, Romance

Goodreads Synopsis:
Dimitri gave Rose the ultimate choice. But she chose wrong...
After a long and heartbreaking journey to Dimitri's birthplace in Siberia, Rose Hathaway has finally returned to St. Vladimir's-and to her best friend, Lissa. It is nearly graduation, and the girls can't wait for their real lives beyond the Academy's iron gates to begin. But Rose's heart still aches for Dimitri, and she knows he's out there, somewhere.
She failed to kill him when she had the chance. And now her worst fears are about to come true. Dimitri has tasted her blood, and now he is hunting her. And this time he won't rest until Rose joins him... forever.

Going into this book, I didn’t have very high expectations. I adored Shadow Kiss (my review here), but Blood Promise (my review here) fell really short. I just expected the series to just decline now, but thankfully, this book was a lot better than Blood Promise! Even though it didn’t really progress from Blood Promise, and nothing really happened, I ended up enjoying the way it went.

I liked the way this book was more focused in court, and in the guardian duties - I enjoyed the new direction the series seemed to be taking. I was disappointed with how overlooked Blood Promise had become though: all of the new characters seemed to be have forgotten, and it didn’t seem like they were going to add anything more to the story. At some points, Blood Promise was slow and I really didn’t see the point in it - I felt cheated on that it was all for nothing!

In my opinion, Rose’s character got so much worse. In the previous books, I loved her so much, but in this one, she just made so many stupid decisions. It was fun to read about her gutsy decisions in court, but after a while they became irritating and tiresome. I really didn’t like the way she couldn’t decide between Adrian or Dimitri too - her constant switching quickly became old and boring.

Thankfully, the second half of the book was so much better. Lots more was happening, so it became a lot more interesting. The book ended on a massive cliff-hanger, so I was really eager to move straight on to the next one! (luckily I had it to hand, so didn’t have to wait). The series picked up, so I was hoping it will be rounded off well, and will redeem itself from previous books!

4 stars

Review: Slated


By Teri Terry

Source: Library, paperback
Genres: Young Adult, Science Fiction, Dystopian, Thriller, Romance, 

Goodreads Synopsis:

Kyla’s memory has been erased,
her personality wiped blank,
her memories lost for ever.

She’s been Slated.

The government claims she was a terrorist and that they are giving her a second chance - as long as she plays by their rules. But echoes of the past whisper in Kyla’s mind. Someone is lying to her, and nothing is as it seems. Who can she trust in her search for the truth?

I really didn’t expect to enjoy this book as much as I did. I have read Teri Terry’s other book, Mind Games, and I enjoyed that too, but I didn’t really think it was anything special. I went into Slated a bit dubious, but I ended up really enjoying it. As with the author’s other book, the plot and ideas where the thing that made it stand out.

This is a science-fiction dystopian, and had all of my favourite elements of one. At the start, it was quite confusing and nothing was really explained, but I liked this because it meant I was hooked from the very beginning - I just had to find out more! As the book progressed, things were partially explained, but a lot was left open-ended, which makes me really desperate to read the sequel!

The characters in this book really didn’t stand out as anything special. Kyla was quite a good protagonist, and I enjoyed reading about her, but she’s definitely not my favourite. I felt at times she could be a bit naive and too innocent - I think if I was in her situation, I would have been less dependent on others and done more for myself.

The romance in this book really didn’t do anything for me. There were only a few small touches of it, but I skimmed through these scenes because they were just boring. I’m never a fan on romance in dystopian, and this was no different. It didn’t add anything to the story, and I think it should have just have been left out.

I really enjoyed this book. It was perfectly paced and so exciting that I was gripped throughout. I would recommend to fans of science fiction, and to people who are new to the genre - the style is simplistic so the book isn’t too hard to navigate. A lot was left unanswered (I think more questions were raised than answered!), so I’m really looking forward to the rest of the series. Overall, a really fun read!

5 Stars

Review: Carry On


Carry On
By Rainbow Rowell

Source: Personal purchase, hardback
Genres: Young Adult, Fantasy, Romance, LGBT+

Goodreads Synopsis:

Simon Snow is the worst chosen one who’s ever been chosen.

That’s what his roommate, Baz, says. And Baz might be evil and a vampire and a complete git, but he’s probably right.

Half the time, Simon can’t even make his wand work, and the other half, he sets something on fire. His mentor’s avoiding him, his girlfriend broke up with him, and there’s a magic-eating monster running around wearing Simon’s face. Baz would be having a field day with all this, if he were here—it’s their last year at the Watford School of Magicks, and Simon’s infuriating nemesis didn’t even bother to show up.

Carry On is a ghost story, a love story, a mystery and a melodrama. It has just as much kissing and talking as you’d expect from a Rainbow Rowell story—but far, far more monsters.

My Review:

I loved this book so, so much. I went in having such high expectations, because I’ve read all of Rowell’s other books, and really enjoyed them all. Fantasy is one of my favourite genres too, so when I heard Rainbow Rowell was writing a gay fantasy, I knew I had to read this one straight away. It was amazing the whole way through, and has instantly become one of my favourite books ever.

The start was slow. I wondered if it was ever going to pick up, because for the first 150 pages (which is a lot, in my opinion) nothing had really happened. The style is the same, so I was enjoying all of the quirky features that I love in all of Rainbow’s books. There were so many unique touches which made the story truly magical.

It started to pick up once I was fully into the story. I know some people have accused the book of being boring, and that there was no plot, but I didn’t find that at all. Once the book had properly started, things were happening all the time, and I was constantly so engaged. There was mystery and suspense, combined with a really good fantasy. In my opinion, it was a match made in heaven!

My favourite aspect was the romance. There wasn’t much, and only began to fully develop towards the end half of the book, but every romantic scene was heartbreakingly beautiful. This book is not a love story and isn’t centered around romance; I enjoyed the kissing scenes so much that I was wishing for more. Tears of joy actually brimmed in my eyes because of how happy I was for the characters involved.

Like all of Rainbow Rowell’s books, the characters were so likeable. It was easy to be so invested in everyone - they were so complex, yet flawed, so felt so real. I adored everyone in different ways; I think Baz is my favourite character because of how many layers he has, and how we got to see so many different sides to him.

The multiple POVs in this book really worked. Usually I’m really against multiple narrators, but I liked it in this because it never got confusing. Everyone sounded so different, so it wasn’t hard to remember who was speaking. It is written in first person present tense too, which I’m normally so against, but Rowell made it work in this book, and it worked so well.

If you’re a fan of Rainbow Rowell, I’d definitely recommend this book. It has everything that you’d hope for in a book by her - the writing style is the same, so has the same whimsical feel as all of her other books have. It has quickly become one of my favourite books of all time, so I’d advise everyone to read it. There’s nothing at all to dislike.


3.5 stars

Review: Birdy


By Jess Vallance

Source: Borrowed from a friend, paperback
Genres: Young Adult, Thriller

Goodreads Synopsis:

Frances Bird has been a loner for so long that she’s given up on ever finding real friendship. But then she’s asked to show a new girl around school, and she begins to think her luck could finally be changing.

Eccentric, talkative and just a little bit posh, Alberta is not at all how Frances imagined a best friend could be. But the two girls click immediately, and it’s not long before they are inseparable. Frances could not be happier.

As the weeks go on, Frances finds out more about her new best friend – her past, her secrets, her plans for the future – and she starts to examine their friendship more closely.

Is it, perhaps, just too good to be true?

My review:

I was really looking forward to reading this book - there’s so much hype surrounding it at the moment, and the synopsis seemed right up my street, so I had high expectations. But for the majority of the book, I was highly disappointed: nothing was happening, and it looked like it was just going to be another boring high-school themed book. My opinions changed at the end, but for me, it was too little too late.

The characters were... okay, though really nothing special. I wasn’t overwhelmed by how original they were, but I quite liked Frances. At the start of the book she seemed quite relatable, but as the book progressed she made some very stupid decisions. She became irritating really quickly, and her narrative made me feel a bit ‘meh’.

The only thing that saved this book from a 2 star rating (or lower!) was the ending. I really wasn’t expecting it at all (usually I have my suspicions); my jaw actually dropped! It was so sinister and creepy, and I just couldn’t stop reading. The way it came as such a shock made it even more appalling - it completely saved the book.

It’s tricky for me to recommend this book - some elements will really appeal to some, but I found it to just be a flop. I think you'd enjoy this if you're a fan of the genre, but if this isn't really your thing, I don't think you'd enjoy persevering through the frustrating start. I found it to be somewhat enjoyable, but was disappointed in the end.


4 stars

Review: Landline


By Rainbow Rowell

Source: Personal purchase, paperback
Genres: Adult, Romance, Contemporary, 

Goodreads Synopsis:

Georgie McCool knows her marriage is in trouble. That it’s been in trouble for a long time. She still loves her husband, Neal, and Neal still loves her, deeply — but that almost seems besides the point now.

Maybe that was always besides the point.

Two days before they’re supposed to visit Neal’s family in Omaha for Christmas, Georgie tells Neal that she can’t go. She’s a TV writer, and something’s come up on her show; she has to stay in Los Angeles. She knows that Neal will be upset with her — Neal is always a little upset with Georgie — but she doesn’t expect to him to pack up the kids and go home without her.

When her husband and the kids leave for the airport, Georgie wonders if she’s finally done it. If she’s ruined everything.

That night, Georgie discovers a way to communicate with Neal in the past. It’s not time travel, not exactly, but she feels like she’s been given an opportunity to fix her marriage before it starts . . .

Is that what she’s supposed to do?

Or would Georgie and Neal be better off if their marriage never happened?

My review:

Rainbow Rowell is one of my favourite authors, so I knew I was going to absolutely adore this book. The cover is so cute and the concept seems right up my street, so I was saving this for when I really needed it. Though reading this during school, I enjoyed it so much! There were ups and downs (some points I thought I was about to properly cry!), but I finished this smiling and feeling so happy. I’d definitely recommend to everybody!

The characters were all so likeable. I think this really made the book for me because of how invested I was in everything. I cared about Georgie and Neal’s relationship (which is unusual for me - normally I’m not a huge fan of books completely centered around romance), so wanted to read on to find out what was going to happen.

I adored every single side character too. There was no real ‘baddie’ in the book, so everyone was written to be likeable; obviously, I loved everyone. I was laughing so much at the banter between Georgie and Seth - their friendship was perfect and just so real. My favourite side character was (probably) Heather because she had so much depth. She was in so many great scenes, and I loved reading about her so much. I would definitely want to read a novella based on this.

In contemporaries, I usually find that there isn’t much going on, and sometimes complain of a lack of plot. This completely wasn’t the case with Landline - my emotions were being ripped to shreds so often, and in every chapter there was another heart-wrenching scene. Things were happening all the time so I never felt bored, and it was the perfect length (if even a bit short) for me to be gripped for the whole book.

The ending was perfect. Even though some people might find it a little predictable, I didn’t think this at all. I’ve read all of Rowell’s other books, so I knew how different her endings can be from each other. I really didn’t know what was going to happen, but things ended up the way I wanted them to. I was really satisfied with what happened, and I think the ending gave us full closure. I miss the characters, but everything was resolved perfectly.

This is one I’d really recommend; if you’ve read Rainbow’s other books, I think you will love this one too, but if you’ve never read a Rainbow Rowell book before (what have you been doing with your life?!), I know you’ll adore this. I’d recommend to fans of easy romance and feel good contemporaries, but also, I think this would make a great book to read at Christmas time. I read this in the autumn, so it was quite seasonal, but it’s set in the days around Christmas, so it might be a nice one to save. Though, I know I would have loved it all year round!


4 stars

Review: Remix


By Non Pratt

Source: Library, Paperback
Genres: Young Adult, Contemporary, Music

Goodreads Synopsis:

Kaz is still reeling from being dumped by the love of her life... Ruby is bored of hearing about it. Time to change the record.

Three days. Two best mates. One music festival. Zero chance of everything working out.

My Review:

I really didn’t think I was going to enjoy this book as much as I ended up doing! I hoped that I would like it, but the setting of a music festival kind of put me off. There’s so much hype surrounding Non Pratt though, so I was determined to find out what everyone was raving about.

This being said, I went into Remix with little expectations, and finished the book with a massive grin on my face. There were ups and downs, but this is such a feel good book, and I ended up really enjoying it. It bordered on being cliche many times, but I was enjoying it so much that I really didn’t mind.

I think the thing that made this book so enjoyable for me were the characters. They were all so well developed and individuals, and I cared about them all so much. I was completely invested in this mainly character-driven story, and was desperate to read on at all times.

I really liked Ruby and Kaz, our protagonists. Though some will find the constant switching of POVs annoying, I enjoyed this element of the book, and didn’t find it confusing at all. They were both very different, but in the end came together. The running theme of their friendship was my favourite from the book because it was so realistic and accurate to life. This book really made me yearn for a friendship like theirs, and grateful for the lovely friends I have.

Overall, I really enjoyed this book! It would make an amazing film (or even theatre play...), so I’d definitely recommend picking it up. At some points I was actually laughing out loud (I did get some weird stares), and at others I was burying my face in second-hand embarrassment. It deals with some really important themes, so I’d definitely recommend for fans of the genre.