Tag: Historical Fiction (page 1 of 3)

BOOK REVIEW: The Girl in the Tower (Winternight #2) by Katherine Arden

BOOK REVIEW: The Girl in the Tower (Winternight #2) by Katherine ArdenThe Girl in the Tower by Katherine Arden
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Synopsis:

The magical adventure begun in The Bear and the Nightingale continues as brave Vasya, now a young woman, is forced to choose between marriage or life in a convent and instead flees her home—but soon finds herself called upon to help defend the city of Moscow when it comes under siege.

Orphaned and cast out as a witch by her village, Vasya’s options are few: resign herself to life in a convent, or allow her older sister to make her a match with a Moscovite prince. Both doom her to life in a tower, cut off from the vast world she longs to explore. So instead she chooses adventure, disguising herself as a boy and riding her horse into the woods. When a battle with some bandits who have been terrorizing the countryside earns her the admiration of the Grand Prince of Moscow, she must carefully guard the secret of her gender to remain in his good graces—even as she realizes his kingdom is under threat from mysterious forces only she will be able to stop.

You cannot love and be immortal.

First, let me say that I found MUCH enjoyment out of this series. There were some definite highs and lows-more on that later-but this book, mostly, brought me immense joy. After the first, I truly didn’t think this series was redeemable-and, in a way, it isn’t. It’s perhaps my fault that I can’t stomach babies dying (I mean, WTF?) and horses being burned alive (whether on a broader scope of attack and war, or not), but I’m sorry: These things will never be okay with me. But, besides those two transgressions, ie extreme triggers for me, this book was by far the strongest of the three (I’ve finished the third in ARC form).

Morozko remains the high point of this series, followed shortly by my baby horse, Solovey. They added heat when the book was growing cold, and humor when things got too dark. And, as anyone who has read this series knows, apparently horses can communicate with certain people? And, can I just say, they are snarky little turds and I was totally here for it.

But, back to Morozko. This book just…it catapulted a character I was already fond of into obsession mode. He was witty. Sharp. Dark. Protective. Seductive. And, I dare say, a bit tortured? I was absolutely head over heels for this very anti-hero, and he is Vasya’s perfect match.

The mare stood quietly, chewing at her hay. Morozko was staring into the fire and did not turn his head when she rose. Vasya thought of the long featureless years of his life, wondered how many nights he sat alone by a fire, or if he wandered the wild instead and made his dwelling seem to have a roof and walls and a fire only to please her.

THAT BEING SAID. Vasya irritated me many times-especially the end. This one part totally made me rage, and I find it wholly unforgivable. It was sick. It was weird. And I want NO FING PART OF IT. If not for this one part, this book would be an absolutely unforgettable favorite-and now, it’s honestly memorable (in some good ways, yes, OBVIOUSLY-it was by far my favorite of the series!) for all the wrong reasons, if I’m being honest.

But as though her words were a summoning, a door among the firs—a door she hadn’t seen—opened with the crack of breaking ice. A swath of firelight bloodied the virgin snow. Now, quite plainly, a house stood in this fir-grove. Long, curling eaves capped its wooden walls, and in the snow-torn firelight, the house seemed to lie breathing, crouched in the thicket.

This story is full of so much passion. Heart. Explosive action-it was honestly an amazing book that had me swooning so hard I scarcely found it easy to breathe-but that does NOT mean I forgive it’s transgressions-no matter how beautiful the covers are.

BOOK REVIEW: Outlander (Outlander #1) by Diana Gabaldon

BOOK REVIEW: Outlander (Outlander #1) by Diana GabaldonOutlander (Outlander #1)
by Diana Gabaldon
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Synopsis:

The year is 1945. Claire Randall, a former combat nurse, is just back from the war and reunited with her husband on a second honeymoon when she walks through a standing stone in one of the ancient circles that dot the British Isles. Suddenly she is a Sassenach—an “outlander”—in a Scotland torn by war and raiding border clans in the year of Our Lord...1743.

Hurled back in time by forces she cannot understand, Claire is catapulted into the intrigues of lairds and spies that may threaten her life, and shatter her heart. For here James Fraser, a gallant young Scots warrior, shows her a love so absolute that Claire becomes a woman torn between fidelity and desire—and between two vastly different men in two irreconcilable lives.

 

For where all love is, the speaking is unnecessary. It is all. It is undying. And it is enough.

I have many other reviews that I was supposed to post before this one but, frankly, I don’t care. When a book sweeps you off your feet, you take that passion and make into a review because you damn well feel like it. When I picked this up, I had no clue if I’d enjoy it or not-in fact, I have a long-winded story that goes along with this series, and I don’t want to bore you with the details but, well, that’s kind of what I do. So…

…knowing, as so many other edible creatures have found, that there is protection in numbers. And that knowledge, bred in the bone, is what lies behind mob rule. Because to step outside the group, let alone to stand against it, was for uncounted thousands of years death to the creature who dared it. To stand against a crowd would take something more than ordinary courage; something that went beyond human instinct. And I feared I did not have it, and fearing, was ashamed.

I have a weird-um-thing with accents. I don’t really enjoy reading them in stories, especially heavy accents, so this series just never has appealed to me. English? Okay, I can deal with a British tone if the writing is good alongside the Brit speak. But Scottish? I don’t know-this is hard for me. It’s probably the ONE accent I swore I’d never read. Back in 2014/2015 when my lovely buddy was big into these, I told her I was ABSOLUTELY UNDER NO CIRCUMSTANCES EVER GOING TO PICK UP THESE BOOKS. Then the show came out. But still-I was not moved (even if that guy they cast is hella good looking and I was partially tempted). And, plus, this was such a long time ago. I did NOT read very big fantasies, at the time, and it seemed like a really big deal to me to undertake such a behemoth of a book. I did like fantasy-I loved it! But it wasn’t my main focus and it all seemed so daunting to jump into the larger fantasies.

The sun was setting. The last rays of light shone through a blue glass flagon that stood on the table, streaking the wall with a shaft of brilliant lapis. I felt as fragile and as brilliant as the glass, as though I would shatter with a touch, and fall in glittering fragments to the floor. If I had meant to spare either Jamie’s emotions or my own, it seemed I was very much too late.

Fast forward to 2018, a couple months ago, and I see a picture of Mr. Jamie on GR (Yeah, good marketing, bravo, really) and a quote underneath it (in his heavy Scottish tone, no less) and something happened that day-my heart stirred and my breath quickened or shallowed or whatever you want to say-I got the feels, okay?

That man and those bookish quote feels happened and I knew it was time. I’m a big girl now. All I really read is fantasy, I’m hard to please (urmm kind of?), and, frankly, BBFs are few and far between (bahaha okay, no, not really but whatever) and I just-I’m always on the search for a book or series these days that will take my breath away and completely consume my soul-it’s been a tough road, this year, for series. All I could deal with were standalones, it seemed, because series were so underwhelming to me. But then came August-now. And will you look at that? I HAVE BEEN A SERIES BINGING FOOL. It turns out that fantasy/historical fiction is my JAM. The diviners + Outlander. WTF? Will wonders never cease?

That’s right. The girl who is against all things historical (mostly) and accents read two of the most daunting type books ever and they kicked my teeth in with the feels. Which, this just goes to show you that my feelings have been right all along on this matter: You read what you feel. I would NEVER have liked the Diviners three years ago-maybe not even a year ago. Outlander would have bored me to death. Maybe it’s because I had a little girl. Maybe it’s because I’ve been faced with appreciating the finer things in life. Whatever the reason, I have found a Genre that steals my heart almost every time I pick it up-and that genre is fantasy.

“Now, then. What does ‘fucking’ mean?”
My surprise must have shown plainly, for he said irritably, “If ye must call me names, that’s one thing. But I dinna care to be called things I can’t answer. I know it’s a damn filthy word, from the way ye said it, but what does it mean?”

Anyway. My point is, this book is just absolutely wonderful-but it’s not going to be for everybody. For me, I found humor in the smallest places, the silliest moments, like when they’d fight, or Claire’s voice. I’d be angry at the most pivotal moments-There were just, ugh, so many triggers. There really were….yet I just loved this story so much. Then there was Jamie and, well, where do I even START??

“I can bear pain, myself,” he said softly, “but I couldna bear yours. That would take more strength than I have.”

Jamie is, was, and will always be the heart of this book. He is kind, thoughtful, and without a doubt one of the most selfless heroes I’ve ever met. Really. The things he did, the things he sacrificed, the way he loved Claire so deeply and wholly, the way he trusted her so faithfully and supported her wholeheartedly…It’s unparalleled. And she was willing to leave him in the blink of an eye, for a while. I just-I can’t. He is the epitome of a book boyfriend and I cannot fathom never meeting him-shame on me. But I am so glad I chose a time when I was mature enough to fully cherish him, because he is worth the wait.

I mean, I’ve held women in my arms before, and kissed them, and … well.

He reached out and touched my lower lip, barely brushing the edge. “It starts out the same, but then, after a moment,” he said, speaking softly, “suddenly it’s as though I’ve a living flame in my arms.” His touch grew firmer, outlining my lips and caressing the line of my jaw. “And I want only to throw myself into it and be consumed.”

And I don’t say this lightly-yes, I love my book boyfriends, but-Jamie is on another level. The dedication and bravery and loyalty and willingness to save Claire at all costs-and I DO mean ALL costs-literally. It’s spell-binding. And I don’t think my heart was even close to ready for it.

Getting up once in the dark to go adventuring is a lark. Twice in two days smacks of masochism.

Babies and animals and pregnancy and probably more things than I can possibly remember, this book gutted me with the issues it brought forth. And, for other people (didn’t bother me at all, but I’m a different sort)-View Spoiler ». Those are the things to watch out for, FYI.

There is a fine line sometimes, between justice and brutality.

And thus concludes my book review that always somehow turns into a book in and of itself. If it weren’t for the fact that these books are so. Dang. LONG. I would already be halfway through book 2 by now. But, alas, I’m just not able to skip out on other books I was excited to read about before the year’s end, but I’m ecstatic to start the next book-and the tv show-in 2019! I know I’m getting some Outlander goodies for Christmas, and I just can hardly contain myself-this book got me through my surgery, and it got me out of it. I love it and it will always hold a very special place in my heart.

*****

If I’m being honest, I finished this book more than a week ago-but, unfortunately, I was on the mend after emergency surgery to get my appendix removed sooooo that’s why I haven’t been able to post anything for a while. But, in one gif, this is how this series, this book, and my darling Jamie made me feel:

RTC.

View all my reviews

BOOK REVIEW: The Gilded Wolves (The Gilded Wolves #1) by Roshani Chokshi

BOOK REVIEW: The Gilded Wolves (The Gilded Wolves #1) by Roshani ChokshiThe Gilded Wolves (The Gilded Wolves #1)
by Roshani Chokshi
Purchase on: AmazoniBooks
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Synopsis:

Set in a darkly glamorous world, The Gilded Wolves is full of mystery, decadence, and dangerous but thrilling adventure.

Paris, 1889: The world is on the cusp of industry and power, and the Exposition Universelle has breathed new life into the streets and dredged up ancient secrets. In this city, no one keeps tabs on secrets better than treasure-hunter and wealthy hotelier, Séverin Montagnet-Alarie. But when the all-powerful society, the Order of Babel, seeks him out for help, Séverin is offered a treasure that he never imagined: his true inheritance.

To find the ancient artifact the Order seeks, Séverin will need help from a band of experts: An engineer with a debt to pay. A historian who can't yet go home. A dancer with a sinister past. And a brother in all but blood, who might care too much.

Together, they'll have to use their wits and knowledge to hunt the artifact through the dark and glittering heart of Paris. What they find might change the world, but only if they can stay alive.

Review:

Well I feel like I need to keep this short and to the point until it actually comes out (January 15th)! This was a good book. That being said, did I expect more? Kind of.

There were so many wants inside him that he doubted there was room for blood in his body.

At this point I honestly don’t know if I didn’t LOVE it because I started reading it a few months ago, put it down and read a ton of really great books in-between, and then just now finally finished it. I do think that this also might suffer from a case of “people said it was super similar to Six of Crows so my bar was set SUPER HIGH” or what. And I get that, it had a cast of misfit and super diverse characters that came together to pull of a heist which was awesome. BUT. I guess there was also a lot I didn’t get. Maybe it was because unlike Six of Crows which is set in a completely fictional world, this was set in France is 1889 and I kept forgetting that. There are instances of people being treated a certain way because of their race and talks of revolution and things of that nature that had me pausing for a second because I honestly have no idea what kind of a place France was during that time period. I do always feel bad too, when books are compared to a series that was hyped up so much and so loved by so many. I’m always nervous like, okay, is this book set up to fail because too many people are going to go into it expecting something exactly like the other series??!?! I really hope not!

“Tristan, my love,” said Laila with dangerous calm. “If you get it the way of a woman’s battle, you’ll get in the way of her sword.”

EITHER WAY, this book has solid bones. The characters, like I said, were really diverse and fun and had hilarious banter with one another. A lot of things really intrigued me about them (like their different powers and mysterious pasts) and I hope that we continue to get more back story on all of them, ESPECIALLY Laila..Also, the ending set the next book up in a way that I NEED IT YESTERDAY. I need more Severin and Laila (they are the definition of tortured romance, folks), I need to know more about last thing that was said about a certain someone being an heir……I just need to know a lot of things. So again, this wasn’t life-changing great like I thought it was going to be, but it was still really good and I will be 100% checking out book two. Chokshi’s writing is as amazingly rich and vibrant as it was in her previous books and I still think this will get a lot of buzz and that a ton of people will fall madly in love with the characters, too.

“When you are who they expect you to be, they never look too closely. If you’re furious, let it be fuel,” Severin said, looking each of them in the eye. “Just don’t forget that enough power and influence makes anyone impossible to look away from. And then they can’t help but see you.”

Huge thanks to NetGalley and the publisher for allowing me to honestly review this eArc! ♥

BOOK REVIEW: The Diviners (The Diviners #1) by Libba Bray

BOOK REVIEW: The Diviners (The Diviners #1) by Libba BrayThe Diviners (The Diviners #1)
by Libba Bray
Purchase on: AmazoniBooks
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Synopsis:

Evie O’Neill has been exiled from her boring old hometown and shipped off to the bustling streets of New York City—and she is pos-i-tute-ly ecstatic. It’s 1926, and New York is filled with speakeasies, Ziegfeld girls, and rakish pickpockets. The only catch is that she has to live with her uncle Will and his unhealthy obsession with the occult.

Evie worries he’ll discover her darkest secret: a supernatural power that has only brought her trouble so far. But when the police find a murdered girl branded with a cryptic symbol and Will is called to the scene, Evie realizes her gift could help catch a serial killer.

As Evie jumps headlong into a dance with a murderer, other stories unfold in the city that never sleeps. A young man named Memphis is caught between two worlds. A chorus girl named Theta is running from her past. A student named Jericho hides a shocking secret. And unknown to all, something dark and evil has awakened.

Review:

There is no greater power on this earth than story.

The fact that it has taken me six years to read this is a complete travesty. I have read, re-read, and loved the Gemma Doyle trilogy so I KNEW that I would love these too whenever I got my lazy ass around to reading them. I swear I picked this up a few different times over the years and I don’t even know what happened..maybe the size daunted me at those points in my life (which seems inconceivable since I actively look for huge ass YA books)??? Either way, surprise, surprise. Here we finally are, with me having finished the first, almost halfway through the second, and loving every page. THANK YOU CHELSEA FOR TALKING THESE UP SO I FINALLY TOOK THE PLUNGE!

But what was the point of living so quietly you made no noise at all?
“Oh Evie, you’re too much,” people said, and it wasn’t complimentary. Yes, she was too much. She felt like too much inside all the time. So why wasn’t she ever enough? 

I honestly don’t even know where to begin so I suppose I’ll start by impressing upon you how good of a writer that Libba Bray is. Phenomenal. That one word is all you really need to know. She thinks, or for the sake of this series ~dreams~, up these incredibly rich and three-dimensional characters that you can’t imagine ever not knowing. You NEED to know they are going to be okay, you fall in love when they fall in love, you bleed when they bleed (well, your heart does as least)…..you get it. Dahhling Evie, sensible Mabel, serious Jericho, *SAM*, snarky Theta, sweet Henry, dreamer Memphis ALL OF THEM, love them. Great writing makes you forget that book characters aren’t actually real and that you aren’t in your house, lying in bed, in 2018. In one of my darling GR friend’s reviews (Em-Check it out here) they said something along the lines of feeling nostalgia for the 20’s after reading this book, which is crazy because obviously she (and I) have never lived during that time. And I LOVED that thought. When you find an author that immerses you so deeply into an entirely new or foreign place or even a time period, that you begin to feel a sense of nostalgia for it….you know you’ve found a winner. I can only hope and pray that the fourth book doesn’t take too long out.

Mabel shrugged. “Suit yourself. Here have a nightgown.”
Evie held up the chaste, high-necked gown, examining it with a scowl. 
“If I should die in the night, please remove this.” 

The next thing I need to mention is how fking scary this book is. I went into it prepared, because of what I had heard from Chels, BUT STILL. I am one of the biggest scaredy cats I know—I mean HORRIFYED of the dark—there were many times where I had to stop reading at night time, which sucks because with a baby that’s really the only time you can read. Like thank God she had read it before me because talking through some of those scenes as I was reading about them was the only way I made it through, honestly. Still, whenever I think of those last couple of scenes with Naughty John I feel this bone-crippling fear start to creep up my body. Just thinking about it now makes me want to look over my shoulder to make sure no one is there, aaahhhahahah. *cue nervous laughter* So yeah, just know, this book is not for the faint of heart. EVEN MORE SO BECAUSE IT’S WRITTEN SO WELL. So, be warned.

Evie sputtered for a second, then took off after Sam, chasing him around the long table, knocking over stacks of books as she did. 
“I’m going to kill him. Who wants to watch?” 

Overall I love this book and I could go on and on for even longer but honestly, I think it’s better if you go into it knowing as little as possible. Just know that I loved all of the characters (except for the ones that I hated, lol), I loved the plot, I loved the writing. Win win win (except for being scared but if I managed to live through it, you will too).

“Life don’t come to you, Memphis. You gotta take it. We have to take it. Because ain’t nobody handing it to us. You understand?”

BOOK REVIEW: Before the Devil Breaks You (The Diviners #3) by Libba Bray

BOOK REVIEW: Before the Devil Breaks You (The Diviners #3) by Libba BrayBefore the Devil Breaks You (The Diviners #3)
by Libba Bray
Purchase on: AmazoniBooks
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Synopsis:

New York City.
1927.
Lights are bright.
Jazz is king.
Parties are wild.
And the dead are coming...

After battling a supernatural sleeping sickness that early claimed two of their own, the Diviners have had enough of lies. They're more determined than ever to uncover the mystery behind their extraordinary powers, even as they face off against an all-new terror. Out on Ward's Island, far from the city's bustle, sits a mental hospital haunted by the lost souls of people long forgotten--ghosts who have unusual and dangerous ties to the man in the stovepipe hat, also known as the King of Crows.

With terrible accounts of murder and possession flooding in from all over, and New York City on the verge of panic, the Diviners must band together and brave the sinister ghosts invading the asylum, a fight that will bring them fact-to-face with the King of Crows. But as the explosive secrets of the past come to light, loyalties and friendships will be tested, love will hang in the balance, and the Diviners will question all that they've ever known. All the while, malevolent forces gather from every corner in a battle for the very soul of a nation--a fight that could claim the Diviners themselves.

 


A thin stream of tears trickled down his cheek. He tapped his head gently against the back of his chair: “The land is old, the land is vast, he has no future, he has no past, his coat is sewn with many woes, he’ll bring the dead, the King of Crows.… He’ll bring the dead, the King of Crows, King of Crows, King of Cr—”

Tell me. Tell me what’s next. Tell me what to do. Tell me what to do with my life. I spent a month reading this series, and it’s almost as if I’ve lost a family member now that I’m all caught up. And, more than that, I have no desire whatsoever to read. It’s as if food has lost its taste. As if the wind and the trees and the birds singing are nothing. Life has lost all meaning.

This was what Henry ran from. This was what the jokes masked. It wasn’t callousness. It was pain and loss so great he could only let it in a little at a time, filtered through the safety of melody and rhythm.

Okay. Whatever. I’m eating a home-baked cookie right now that defies all logic of deliciousness that I just found the recipe for BUT YOU GET MY POINT. I don’t know what to do with myself anymore.

I had a whole list planned for the month of October-no real set reading order, I just knew that I at least wanted to get Hidden Bodies and The Diviners read-I’d heard nothing but amazing things about the The Diviners, only that it was scary-ish and beyond addiciting, so I knew I had to save it for now, when I had an excuse to scare the living crap out of me. So I decided to start it first-seemed logical? Then I could read the second one in the middle of the month and the third at the end, for Halloween.

“Why would somebody put that here?” Memphis said. “It doesn’t look like the others. The others are hopeful. This…” He shuddered. “This is a nightmare.”
“Hey! Come see what I found,” Jericho called.
Sam turned to Memphis. “See, when somebody says that to me in a dirty, creepy hole of a cellar, my first inclination is to run.”

Well *bleep* sakes, I couldn’t wrap my head around any other book after I had put down the first and I just knew what I had to do-Binge read for the first time in YEARS. And see? SEE WHY I DON’T DO THIS?? Well, and, to be fair, no series has made me WANT to binge in this manner in forever. Like…WHY.

Jericho glared. “It’s more complicated than black and white, good and evil. Don’t forget: Jake Marlowe saved my life once upon a time.”
“And for that you owe him your blind loyalty?”
“Okay. You two crazy kids,” Sam said, laughing nervously. “Tell me the truth: What have you both got against fun? Was it a childhood trauma? There is no prohibition against fun. Yet.”

And here I am writing an incoherent review that really isn’t necessary but really is necessary because this is my last outlet for fangirling about my lovable and amazing FAMILY. Yeah. I’ve upgraded them. They are truly my life my love and my sole reason for living, atm. But then there are darker things that surround this series, such as the wait for the final book, the sadness at the end, and, once again, how scary it was and the many, many deaths.

A guard waited at the front gate. He frowned. “Only Miss Knight is expected.”
“Oh, but I’m her sister and her chaperone,” Evie bluffed, putting a hand to her chest as if the idea of Theta going into the Hollywood viper pit unaccompanied was unthinkable. “And this lovely lady is her secretary, Miss Ling Chan, and this is her personal seamstress, Miss Mabel Rose.”
“I’ve made all of Miss Knight’s costumes for the Follies,” Mabel said, falling right in. “I love to sew.”
The guard eyed Ling suspiciously. “And I love to… secretary.”

These are some dark books, and I think people should know that. It’s YA, but I think it pushes that envelope. I mean, it’s not TOO much, but it just is very dense and it covers a lot of topics. I never expected that-I never expected to care about so many things…yet here I am, loving every little thing about it-aside from the darkness of animals. I just do not like the mauling of innocent things. And perhaps I’m too tender-hearted, but I refuse to think any differently. If this was gotten rid of, and less child death (I don’t have any specifics for you, just know that it does happen and it is NOT shied away from), I really would have zero complaints besides wanting to sleep with all the lights on.

“You see him?” Sam asked as they peeked around a noisy boiler.
“Huh-uh. And I don’t like basements. Nothing good happens in basements. That’s where one-toothed murderers always live,” Evie whispered. “In basements.”
“Well, my mother used to put pickled herring in our basement,” Sam said, inching forward.
“See what I mean? If it’s not ghosts and one-toothed murderers, it’s pickled herring.”

And it’s no secret that I am in a legion of rabid fans who would DIE to see Sam and Evie together…but do we get to see that in this book? Or does she end up with Jericho? Or neither? And what the heck happens at the end that effected everyone so? These are the questions that should plague those who haven’t gotten around to this beauty yet (or so I think AHHAAHA).

He opened the door and held out the rose. “Welcome.”
“Aww, Freddy, you shouldn’t have,” Sam said, taking the rose and threading it through the buttonhole of his coat. “This is so sudden! I don’t know what to say. Oh, okay. You’ve won me over, you big brute. The answer is yes.”
With that, Sam jumped into Jericho’s arms.

I honestly was expecting something a bit…bigger. But, as always, I am a peril loving fiend and, though this was dark as dark gets, it wasn’t big enough to make me go crazy-though I did love it wholeheartedly all the same. I’m sorry, I’m just waiting for some hero saving the damsel in distress to happen, and I haven’t gotten that yet-and I don’t think I’m likely to…and it kind of bothers me. I don’t know why, but I just really expected that to happen, at least once. And the two opportunities where I expected it to happen, it didn’t. Poo.

But nothing was braver than letting somebody really know you, warts and all. Nothing was braver than trying to love and be loved.

No, Libba is more about the subtle chaos and mayhem and destruction of our souls-and this seems to really resonate with people. I don’t know, something about it being more realistic *mumbles to self* Hmph. That’s not to say I didn’t love the ending, though, because I did. Either way, this book is by far the darkest, and I suppose I never expected it to be so bleak.

And I really really really wouldn’t be me if I didn’t say something about my baby Sam-What?! I’ve been so so good, haven’t I? I love all my characters, I really do, but Sam and Evie just shine. They are my absolute favorites and they never cease to make me smile. And I think their character growth over the last three books has been wonderful-if not even separately, together.

They have the most wonderful relationship and it radiates warmth and glows like the sun, even as Evie rolls her eyes and acts as if she can’t be bothered by it all. She has her eyes set on Jericho this whole book…and it literally kills Sam. My heart. I LOVE IT SO HARD.

“Well, maybe you can give him a noodge?”
“A what?”
“A noodge. A little prodding,” Sam explained. “I’m getting antsy here.”
“Fine. I’ll send him an urgent letter.” At the door, she wrinkled her nose. “Noodge? Is that a real word?”
“It’s Yiddish. Like… Ikh hob dikh lib.”
Evie narrowed her eyes in suspicion. “What does that mean?”
Sam smiled. “Maybe one day I’ll tell you.”

Their friendship, despite the banter (or maybe because of it), is so strong and they clearly have a strong connection-something that has grown from the last book that they never wanted, needed, or anticipated. It just…it rings wonderfully authentic and precious and you can’t help but love them, even if they don’t end up together, and even more if they do. He will always support her no matter her horrible decisions, and he’ll always implore her to be herself, because who else should she be but the girl he thinks is just the best? And it’s for this reason I am ride or die, and I it really makes my love for this series infinite with it’s exponential growth-and don’t even get me started on how wonderful Evie is and how she has become someone to love and admire, even when she’s being silly (which I’ve always loved).

“But I got my own kind of smarts, from the streets, and when I go after something, well, just try’n shake me off. I’m an odd fella, but I know I’m an odd fella. What I can’t figure out is why you gotta make yourself crackers trying to be somebody you can’t ever be instead of just letting yourself be the one and only Evie O’Neill.”

And, lastly, I wanted to say that this one will be hard for some-there are a lot of deaths, and some I just didn’t expect-one for sure. I never would have guessed…because it’s such a BIG deal!! And man…it shook me. I am shooketh. Though….eh, I won’t say it. But I’m certainly thinking it lol. Sad as it may be! And another…like wtf? That was soooo not expected, but maybe because it was so out of left field-I don’t know! It was like oh lots of death la la la these people are off to the side, I’m sure they’re fine and then BAM!!! HE/SHE GONE! Like WHAT?! Libba, you devious Minx. And then…a couple were so grisly like….omg poor poor souls :/ Oh, and one death?! HAHAHA BRING IT ON. TAKE THAT, YOU-YOU-YOU WHATEVER YOU ARE!

AND DO NOT GET ME GOING ON THAT MENTAL ASYLUM OKAY?! I thought it was going to be the whole book, but turns out Libba wanted things to come to a head, to get darker…and oh boy, they so did. I did not expect that plot to change…but I’m glad it did, because that hospital killed me. IT WAS WAY TOO SCARY I COULDN’T EVEN READ IT! So, for those of you scared of the asylum…get past a certain point and you’re good! (I mean…kind of) lol

One minute, they were a group; the next, they were a mob. And that was what scared him about the dead things inside the fog: They were the blood-fever of those wild nights on the streets of Hell’s Kitchen. They were the dark corners of the refuge where the priests didn’t bother looking.

**

We wish you love. And dreams. And hope.
We wish we could keep you from making the same mistakes.
We wish we could extinguish your hate.
We wish we could walk among you just to be close to the living.
Sometimes, we do.

So yeah. This crazy review happened. I know it’s a little off the wall odd, but what review by me isn’t? When I love something, I love it with every fiber of my being…and this series deserves all the praise. I just hope I can last until that final book comes out…because Ms. Bray literally holds my heart in the palm in her hand.

We are the dead.
We are the keepers of the stories.
We hold the history of blood and promises.
We are speaking.
Are you listening?
Will you hear?

**********************

My heart. My poor damaged heart. My literal obsession and month long life is now over and my heart. There’s no release date for the fourth and my fucking heart. Now what?

RTC.

View all my reviews

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