Mini Reviews: YA books #1

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Hello, dearies! We have here another powerful edition of the mini reviews post =D This time, however, the macro theme will be Young Adult books that I have read recently =)

Just remembering that the mini reviews deal is a combination of inspirations from Cait, of The Paper Fury, and from Lindsey, of @thepagemistress, and that I do those with books that were good, but weren’t unforgettable =)

In this post, you’ll find mini reviews for:

  • Elizabeth Rudnick – A Frozen Heart
  • Emily Rodda – The Key to Rondo (Rondo #1)
  • G. K. DeRosa – Wilder Destiny (The Guardian #2)
  • John Connolly – The Book of Lost Things
  • Kiera Cass – The Siren
  • Laini Taylor – Daughter of Smoke and Bone (Daughter of Smoke and Bone #1)
  • Shannon Hale – The Unfairest of Them All (Ever After High: Storybook of Legends #2)

*~. A Frozen Heart.~*

From Elizabeth Rudnick

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Rating: 3 stars

Reading period: Jul. 15th to 17th, 2016

Format: Brazilian Portuguese paperback

Source: bought at a local Brazilian book store

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Told in alternating chapters from both Anna’s and Hans’ perspectives, A Frozen Heart takes a sophisticated look at events of Frozen, exploring the couple’s backstories, motivations, and doomed relationship.

PROS

This book explored Hans side of the story and it was so good. I mean, we don’t get many glimpses of him overall and the book builds a background for him. I’m a sucker for Hans, as he was so good at being bad, but after A Frozen Heart, I just want to marry him, haha!

CONS

The other part of the book was entirely written under Anna’s point of view. Guess what? That’s exactly whose point we get from the movie! Now tell me, what is the point of doing a transcription of the movie into a book, scene by scene, when this was supposed to be an authorized fanfiction? I got so disappointed. Why not write from Elsa and Hans’ POVs? Seriously, Anna parts were a huge turn off.

PS for Brazilian Portuguese readers: go for the original version of this book. The translation was awful and it was possible to see literal translations with no language adaptation whatsoever practically at all chapters.

QUOTES

I don’t have the paperback with me right now, so I’ll update this bit as soon as I get home! Sorry, guys >.<

RECOMMENDED FOR

Fans of the Frozen animation and collectors seeking pretty covers to décor their shelves =)

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*~.The Key to Rondo.~*

From Emily Rodda

Rondo #1

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Rating: 3 stars

Reading period: Dec. 03rd to 16th, 2016

Format: Brazilian Portuguese paperback

Source: borrowed from my younger cousin, Walter – thanks, man! You rock ❤

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A new realm of magic from Emily Rodda, the New York Times bestselling author of the Deltora books.

There are three rules to the old painted, music box: Wind the box three times only. Never shut the box when the music is playing. Never move the box before the music stops.

Leo wouldn’t dream of breaking these rules, but does his stubborn cousin Mimi listen? She winds the box four times — and suddenly the paintings on its side come to life and a powerful witch is released. Now its up to Leo and Mimi to stop the witch, if only they can find the key to the music box — and the magical world it controls.

PROS

Once again, Emily Rodda built an amazing world with interesting characters and just enough mystery to keep fueling her action and adventure modus operandi

CONS

The story pace is awfully slow and I couldn’t bring myself to understand or care about what would come next. Things only picked up towards the end of the book, making me doubt my capacities of continuing the series – my cousin only has this book, so I’d have to locate the rest of the series to top everything. #yesIamlazy #notworththeeffort

QUOTES

I don’t have my notes for this book with me right now, so I’ll update this bit as soon as I get home! Sorry, guys >.<

RECOMMENDED FOR

Fans of Fantasy, Middle Grade books and awesomely built world settings =)

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*~.Wilder Destiny.~*

From G. K. DeRosa

The Guardian #2

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Rating: 3 stars

Reading period: Mar. 29th to 30th, 2016

Format: ebook

Source: received from Chapter by Chapter as part of the blog tour for Wilder Revelation, The Guardian #3

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Celeste Wilder’s mundane world has been completely turned upside down, and it all started when the intriguing Constantin brothers strolled into her small town last summer. After discovering the truth about her destiny and making a life-changing decision, she is now forced to deal with the consequences of her new supernatural reality. Gone are the carefree days of high school and homework, now she must fulfill her duty as a Guardian…no matter the cost. Luckily, she has the love of her life by her side as she battles the supernatural forces of evil, but will that love really last forever? As new challenges arise and old enemies reappear, Celeste must find the strength to overcome the biggest threat she’s ever had to face.

PROS

This volume shows a great development in all characters and also on DeRosa’s writing, warming up the series for the reader =) Plus, many cool geek references, haha!

CONS

I have to admit that, if I hadn’t got all books when I started the series, I would have dropped it. Even with the positive stuff going on during the second book, it wasn’t good enough to make me go and read the final one.

QUOTES

“If she [Celeste] told someone else it would make it real, and she wasn’t sure she could bear it.”

RECOMMENDED FOR

Fans of urban fantasy, paranormal romance and YA!

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You can read here my reviews for:

Wilder (The Guardian #1)

Wilder Revelation (The Guardian #3)

*~.The Book of Lost Things.~*

From John Connolly

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Rating: 3 stars

Reading period: Dec. 16th to 25th, 2016

Format: Brazilian Portuguese paperback

Source: also borrowed from my younger cousin, Walter – he sees a book, he passes it to me, haha! I have the best family ever, I know #what

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High in his attic bedroom, twelve-year-old David mourns the death of his mother, with only the books on his shelf for company. But those books have begun to whisper to him in the darkness. Angry and alone, he takes refuge in his imagination and soon finds that reality and fantasy have begun to meld. While his family falls apart around him, David is violently propelled into a world that is a strange reflection of his own — populated by heroes and monsters and ruled by a faded king who keeps his secrets in a mysterious book, The Book of Lost Things.

Taking readers on a vivid journey through the loss of innocence into adulthood and beyond, New York Times bestselling author John Connolly tells a dark and compelling tale that reminds us of the enduring power of stories in our lives.

PROS

The book is beautifully written and very detailed, taking the reader so deep into the plot that we feel like watching a movie as John tells us the story *–*

CONS

Such a slow pace! Also, I kept getting that awful feeling that the author wants to tell me something and I just can’t quite grab it until it’s too late, you know? Also, the end. I won’t say anything due spoilers, but let’s put it this way: I’m well aware that a happy ending depends on where you stop the story. I didn’t like that John didn’t stop the story when I THE PANDA was happy. #justsaying

QUOTES

I don’t have my notes for this book with me right now, so I’ll update this bit as soon as I get home! Sorry, guys >.<

RECOMMENDED FOR

Fans of fantasy, historical books, emotional rides and deep reflexive reads =)

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*~.The Siren.~*

From Kiera Cass

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Rating: 3 stars

Reading period: Sep. 13th to 18th, 2016

Format: Brazilian Portuguese paperback

Source: won as a gift from my offline bff Jenny

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Love is a risk worth taking.

Years ago, Kahlen was rescued from drowning by the Ocean. To repay her debt, she has served as a Siren ever since, using her voice to lure countless strangers to their deaths. Though a single word from Kahlen can kill, she can’t resist spending her days on land, watching ordinary people and longing for the day when she will be able to speak and laugh and live freely among them again.

Kahlen is resigned to finishing her sentence in solitude…until she meets Akinli. Handsome, caring, and kind, Akinli is everything Kahlen ever dreamed of. And though she can’t talk to him, they soon forge a connection neither of them can deny…and Kahlen doesn’t want to.

Falling in love with a human breaks all the Ocean’s rules, and if the Ocean discovers Kahlen’s feelings, she’ll be forced to leave Akinli for good. But for the first time in a lifetime of following the rules, Kahlen is determined to follow her heart.

PROS

Kiera’s writing is ever always enticing, no matter how you feel towards her protagonists or how much the story is ‘getting nowhere’ in your head. Kiera is a true siren of words, getting herself into your consciousness so fast that, when you see, you are talking about her – good or bad, it doesn’t matter. She already has you, haha! But I did like the fresh intake on mermaids =)

Ps: the new released edition with this pretty cover that I featured above was taken in Brazil ❤

CONS

Why bother naming characters with words that I can’t even phantom how to pronounce, Kiera? Seriously, this game is getting boring, please consult a popular baby names book or something before your next novel. Thank you. Also, I didn’t care for Kahlen or for the end at all =(

QUOTES

I don’t have the paperback with me right now, so I’ll update this bit as soon as I get home! Sorry, guys >.<

RECOMMENDED FOR

Fans of mermaids, urban fantasy, YA books and quick reads ❤

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*~.Daughter of Smoke and Bone.~*

From Laini Taylor

Daughter of Smoke and Bone #1

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Rating: 3 stars

Reading period: Apr. 03rd to *insert major break on my reading here* Aug. 29th, 2016

Format: paperback

Source: won as a gift from my awesome cousin Walter – this boy spoils me rotten, haha!

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Around the world, black hand prints are appearing on doorways, scorched there by winged strangers who have crept through a slit in the sky.

In a dark and dusty shop, a devil’s supply of human teeth grows dangerously low.

And in the tangled lanes of Prague, a young art student is about to be caught up in a brutal otherworldly war.

Meet Karou. She fills her sketchbooks with monsters that may or may not be real, she’s prone to disappearing on mysterious “errands”, she speaks many languages – not all of them human – and her bright blue hair actually grows out of her head that color. Who is she? That is the question that haunts her, and she’s about to find out.

When beautiful, haunted Akiva fixes fiery eyes on her in an alley in Marrakesh, the result is blood and starlight, secrets unveiled, and a star-crossed love whose roots drink deep of a violent past. But will Karou live to regret learning the truth about herself?

PROS

Beautiful and perfect writing with a fresh setting in Praga – am I the only one that loves finding YA books set in places outside of the US? I mean, I do love me some North American YA, don’t get me wrong, but European YA… Oh, my. Also, I really freaking loved the intake on how magic works that Laini brings us and the fact that the main character has blue hair ❤ Oh, oh, and can we talk about the beautiful cover?? And, and the sidekicks?! BECAUSE THEY ARE ALL PERFECT!

CONS

But Annelise, you just highly praised the book. Why only a 3 stars rating?

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You see, here things get tricky with me. While I adored many, MANY things on Daughter of Smoke and Bone, the ones I disliked was more like I hated them. Let’s begin.

I’m not a fan of past lives romances, like we met in another life and are bounded to be together now. It’s just not my cup of tea. Then, I found highly unbelievable many of Karou’s reactions towards the big revelations on the end of the book – if Akiva had done only a third for me and my family that he did to Karou, I would have killed him on the spot. To finish my rant, I felt like this book was heavily fueled by instalove, which also happens to be a cup of tea that I run like crazy from, given the chance.

While I loved most of the aspects regarding Daughter of Smoke and Bone and don’t regret picking it up, the cons were so strong in my heart that I do not think I’ll finish the series.

QUOTES

I don’t have the paperback with me right now, so I’ll update this bit as soon as I get home! Sorry, guys >.<

RECOMMENDED FOR

Fans of awesome writing, YA romance, urban fantasy, angels and soul mates ❤

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*~.The Unfairest of Them All.~*

From Shannon Hale

Ever After High: Storybook of Legends #2

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Rating: 5 stars

Reading period: Nov. 28th, 2016

Format: Brazilian Portuguese paperback

Source: bought at a local Brazilian bookstore

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It’s the aftermath of Legacy Day, the day when the students at Ever After High are supposed to pledge to follow in their fairytale parents’ footsteps, and everyone is in a huff and a puff! Raven Queen, daughter of the Evil Queen, has refused to sign the Storybook of Legends, rejecting her story–and putting everyone else’s in jeopardy.

The Royal Apple White doesn’t want to think Raven is being a rebellious pain, but Raven’s choice means Apple might never get the poisoned apple, Prince Charming, and a kingdom to rule. Behind Apple stands the Royals, those who want to play by the book and embrace their stories. The Rebels, supporters of Raven, believe in breaking free from destiny and writing their own stories.

But when the chaos and rivalry land wonderlandiful Madeline Hatter in trouble, Raven and Apple must bring the Royals and the Rebels together to shut the book on their feud before it threatens to end all of their Happily Ever Afters once and for all.

Mirror, Mirror on the Wall…Who’s the Unfairest of Them All?

PROS

I’m a HUGE fan of Ever After High since the beginning of the online series at YouTube and I also love Shannon Hale’s writing, so OF COURSE I had to pick this series up, haha! I love how Shannon manages to give depth to the characters without losing their signature behavior from the series *–*

CONS

This is a very middle grade read in my opinion – older people who don’t watch/like the web series probably won’t find this as awesome as I did, oops!

QUOTES

I don’t have the paperback with me right now, so I’ll update this bit as soon as I get home! Sorry, guys >.<

RECOMMENDED FOR

Fans of Ever After High, awesome writing, middle grade books and fairy tales retellings ❤

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You can read here my review for Austenland, from Shannon Hale!

~*~

AND WE ARE DONE! Omg, so many mini reviews. I’m addicted to them, oops! I hope you guys are enjoying this format, as it came to stay, haha! I’ll continue with my George R. R. Martin reviews as well, don’t worry, but only for received books for review and special personal reads =)

With love,

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9 thoughts on “Mini Reviews: YA books #1

  1. Ooh, The Book of Lost Things sounds interesting! I felt the same way as you about Daughter of Smoke and Bone – I loved the writing, but the insta-love bugged me, and OMG I could never ever forgive what Akiva did. I liked the first book, but I didn’t really enjoy the rest of the series, because it was just so bleak – it was just continuous war basically. Omg I love Zuzana though – her scenes made the rest of the books bearable! She’s such a brilliant character.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Okay,now I REALLY won’t be reading the next books in the series! And Zuzana is great, really! Watching Praga is also great to see through the author’s eyes, but omg the characters… Anyway, haha! And I think you’d loooove The Book of Lost Things! But I must warn you, it is REALLY emotional!!

      Liked by 1 person

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