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Elysium

reviews

For The Throne by Hannah Whitten

For The Throne (Wilderwood 2) by Hannah Whitten

THE FIRST DAUGHTER IS FOR THE THRONE
THE SECOND DAUGHTER IS FOR THE WOLF

Red and the Wolf have finally contained the threat of the Five Kings, but at a steep cost. Red’s beloved sister – Neve, the First Daughter – is lost in the Shadowlands. But Neve has an ally, even if it’s one she’d rather never speak to again – the rogue king Solmir. Together they must journey across a dangerous landscape to find the mysterious Heart Tree – and finally claim the gods’ dark, twisted powers for themselves. (publisher)

 

Neve has ended up in Shadowlands, mostly because of her actions in the previous book. And she’s stuck there with Solmir, who was the villain in book 1. They both try to stop the Five Kings from escaping the Shadowlands, but they have different ideas about how to do it. There are also some trust issues since Solmir impersonated Neve’s betrothed.

In the first book, we got a few chapters from Neve’s pov but I wasn’t really interested in those. I didn’t warm up to her at all. So, I was a bit apprehensive about this book before starting. But I really liked Neve in this book. Like Red, she makes rash, and bad, decisions but she’s more calculated and her intentions are darker. In this book, she must come to terms with some of her decisions in the previous book and think about her motivations for doing those.

With Red and Eammon I was rather indifferent at times. I liked them but didn’t love them. I did love Neve and Solmir though. Probably because I liked Solmir more than Eammon. In short, Red and Eammon were the boring pair and Neve and Solmir were the interesting pair.

I didn’t really warm up to Raffe’s chapters with the princess whose name I don’t remember. And I thought he believed her lies too easy. Well to be fair, they all did.

I liked Red and Neve’s relationship through the books and that it was the thing that carried through the books.

4/5

Published: Orbit (June 9, 2022)
Format: eBook
Source: Netgalley

reviews

The Vanished Days by Susanna Kearsley

The Vanished Days by Susanna Kearsley

There are many who believe they know what happened, but they do not know the whole of it. The rumours spread, and grow, and take their hold, and so to end them I have been persuaded now to take my pen in hand and tell the story as it should be told…

Autumn, 1707. Old enemies from the Highlands to the Borders are finding common ground as they join to protest the new Union with England, the French are preparing to launch an invasion to carry the young exiled Jacobite king back to Scotland to reclaim his throne, and in Edinburgh the streets are filled with discontent and danger.

Queen Anne’s commissioners, seeking to calm the situation, have begun settling the losses and wages owed to those Scots who took part in the disastrous Darien expedition eight years earlier.

When Lily, the young widow of a Darien sailor, comes forward to collect her husband’s wages, her claim is challenged, and one of the men who’s assigned to examine her has only days to decide if she’s honest, or if his own feelings are making him blind to the truth, and if he’s being used as a pawn in an even more treacherous game.

A story of intrigue, adventure, endurance, romance…and the courage to hope. (publisher)

I didn’t realize this was part of a series when I requested this, but it worked fine as a stand-alone. I’ve read one book, Mariana, from this author before but that was about 20 years ago. I remember liking it, but memories are a bit hazy though… So I was interested to see how this turns out.

Lily Graeme claims to be a widow of a Darien sailor and has come to collect her husband’s wages. However, people don’t believe that she was married to this guy. They were from very different stations of life for one matter. Adam Williamson finds himself entangled in the task of finding out if Lily speaks the truth.

We have a dual timeline with Adam’s pov in the present and Lily’s in the past. The story starts when Lily is a child so there are about 20 years in between. I didn’t know about the Darien scheme or that Scotland tried to establish a colony in Caledonia. So a lot of new stuff. The book is set during the Jacobite risings in Scotland (The Old Pretender).

I liked both Lily and Adam. My one problem was that in the present day, which is from Adam’s pov, there is very little about Lily. Mostly it’s Adam talking about Lily with someone.

I liked the Scotland setting and the writing. Some people have complained about the slowness, but I didn’t have that problem. I’m definitely reading more from the author. Hopefully sooner than in 20 years this time…

4/5

Published: Simon & Schuster UK (May 4, 2022)
Format: eBook
Source: Netgalley

reviews

Elektra by Jennifer Saint

Elektra by Jennifer Saint

The House of Atreus is cursed. A bloodline tainted by a generational cycle of violence and vengeance. This is the story of three women, their fates inextricably tied to this curse, and the fickle nature of men and gods.

Clytemnestra
The sister of Helen, wife of Agamemnon – her hopes of averting the curse are dashed when her sister is taken to Troy by the feckless Paris. Her husband raises a great army against them and determines to win, whatever the cost.

Cassandra
Princess of Troy, and cursed by Apollo to see the future but never to be believed when she speaks of it. She is powerless in her knowledge that the city will fall.

Elektra
The youngest daughter of Clytemnestra and Agamemnon, Elektra is horrified by the bloodletting of her kin. But can she escape the curse, or is her own destiny also bound by violence? (publisher)

I haven’t read the author’s first book Ariadne, but I’ve heard so much good about it that I was very excited to read Elektra.

The story is told from 3 pov’s: Clytemnestra, wife of Agamemnon and sister of Helen, her daughter Elektra and Cassandra of Troy.

Cassandra was my fav of the three, liked Clytemnestra, but didn’t like Elektra or understand her. She definitely wasn’t sad about her sister and the jealousy of the slaves (Briseis and Cassandra) was just weird. I sort of wanted to yell that it could easily be you who’s the slave. Especially as the house of Atreus was such a peace-loving family… Mostly I was between wanting to shake or slap her.

I liked the writing, and I think that I would like Ariadne more. I’m less familiar with the tale and characters and don’t have such strong ideas about them. I felt like the book was much more Clytemnestra’s story than Elektra’s, who has such a small role, especially in the beginning. Elektra becomes more prominent in the end though.

3/5

Published: Wildfire (April 28, 2022)
Format: eBook
Source: Netgalley

reviews

The Hunger of the Gods by John Gwynne

The Hunger of the Gods (The Bloodsworn Saga 2) by John Gwynne

THE DEAD GODS ARE RISING . . .

Lik-Rifa, the dragon god of legend, has been freed from her eternal prison. Now she plots a new age of blood and conquest.

As Orka continues the hunt for her missing son, the Bloodsworn sweep south in a desperate race to save one of their own – and Varg takes the first steps on the path of vengeance.

Elvar has sworn to fulfil her blood oath and rescue a prisoner from the clutches of Lik-Rifa and her dragonborn followers, but first she must persuade the Battle-Grim to follow her.

Yet even the might of the Bloodsworn and Battle-Grim cannot stand alone against a dragon god.

Their hope lies within the mad writings of a chained god. A book of forbidden magic with the power to raise the wolf god Ulfrir from the dead . . . and bring about a battle that will shake the foundations of the earth. (publisher)

This was one of the most anticipated books of the year and it didn’t disappoint. And I absolutely loved the recap of the previous book. Wish more books had one.

The book starts where the last book ended. Orka is trying to find his son, Varg wants to find his sister and Elvar is looking for her own vengeance. Orka is still my favourite by far. I liked Varg’s chapters but mostly because the other members of the group are interesting. Elvar’s chapters were the least interesting, but they weren’t bad. It was great to see that she has grown and found herself. I liked seeing how the different storylines merged with each other.

My only minor issue is with the pacing. There’s a lot of travelling in the book and it slowed the pace a bit at times. But that was pretty much my only problem, and it wasn’t a huge one. But there are also a lot of battles so there is plenty of action too.

I can’t wait for the next book and what happens next! Because it was an evil way to end the book…

4,5/5

Published: Orbit (April 14, 2022)
Format: eBook
Source: Netgalley

reviews

Gallant by V.E. Schwab

Gallant by V.E. Schwab

Sixteen-year-old Olivia Prior is missing three things: a mother, a father, and a voice. Her mother vanished all at once, and her father by degrees, and her voice was a thing she never had to start with. She grew up at Merilance School for Girls.Now, nearing the end of her time there, Olivia receives a letter from an uncle she’s never met, her father’s older brother, summoning her to his estate, a place called Gallant.

But when she arrives, she discovers that the letter she received was several years old. Her uncle is dead. The estate is empty, save for the servants.

Olivia is permitted to remain, but must follow two rules: don’t go out after dusk, and always stay on the right side of a wall that runs along the estate’s western edge. Beyond it is another realm, ancient and magical, which calls to Olivia through her blood… (publisher)

Olivia Prior is an orphan who can’t speak, sees ghouls and grew up in Merilance School for Girls. She’s always been an outsider at Merilance because she’s a bit different. Then she receives a letter from an uncle and moves to a mysterious family home called Gallant. The house has a garden where is a gate and you shouldn’t open it. Because the other side is where Death lives.

I wasn’t sure what to expect from this book. I loved Shades of Magic books, but Addie LaRue was a bit of a letdown. And I guess this book lands somewhere in the middle. I mean I liked it and read it in one sitting, but there was something missing.

I liked Olivia but the other characters stayed kinda distant and I didn’t really care what happened for them. I liked that the main character was mute and I was fine with less dialogue. But most of the characters were kinda dull. I actually would have liked to learn more about Olivia’s parents and how they met. I did like the gothic feeling and the illustrations were pretty. But in the end, there was very little accomplished. Like things were pretty much like what it was in the beginning. So what was the point?

3/5

Published: Titan Books (March 1, 2022)
Format: eBook
Source: Netgalley