King of Scars (Nikolai Duology #1) by Leigh Bardugo

This is book 1 in the Nikolai Duology that follows the Grishaverse books and the Six of Crows books. ❤ Kaz!

Check out my adorable Corgi butt bookmark that I got in China!

Anyway back to this book. Nikolai is now king of Ravka, and must find a way to protect it after the civil war with the Darkling, since threat from Fjerda and Shu are very serious. Nikolai still has the dark monster in him, it did not die when the Darkling did, and it is getting him into all kinds of trouble.

Poor Nina, that scene with Matthias. OMG. In happier news…..I totally ship Zoya and Nikolai. Zoyolai? The cliffhanger was crazy and I can not wait for book 2!

Have you read any of the Grishaverse books? Who are you favorite main characters? I would like to see Kaz get his own back story or future stories. Who would you like to see a spinoff book of?

Love from,

Nox

February Reading

Hi boys and ghouls!

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I am currently reading King of Scars. I have made it to page 143, chapter 9. Really loving this sequel.

If I finish it this month I plan on starting Eeny Meeny.

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What are you reading this month?

Crooked Kingdom (Six of Crows #2) by Leigh Bardugo

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Goodreads Summary:

When you can’t beat the odds, change the game.

Kaz Brekker and his crew have just pulled off a heist so daring even they didn’t think they’d survive. But instead of divvying up a fat reward, they’re right back to fighting for their lives. Double-crossed and badly weakened, the crew is low on resources, allies, and hope. As powerful forces from around the world descend on Ketterdam to root out the secrets of the dangerous drug known as jurda parem, old rivals and new enemies emerge to challenge Kaz’s cunning and test the team’s fragile loyalties. A war will be waged on the city’s dark and twisting streets―a battle for revenge and redemption that will decide the fate of the Grisha world.

My Thoughts:

I love the covers on this series!!!! They are so beautiful! This book is so fucking good. This story starts one week after Six of Crows and that’s great because the cliffhanger on Six of Crows was the size of the grand canyon. All our favorite characters are back and just as awesome as ever. Kaz is darker and more tortured because they stole his lovel (even though is isn’t exactly sure he can say that yet or that it could even work) but HOW DARE THEY!? Kaz is all I WILL BRING THEM TO THEIR KNEES, THEIR WORLD WILL CRUMBLE. MWAHAHAHA. Although Wylan gets more fleshed out in this book, and he is super adorable, he still isn’t my favorite. This book is super long also, but it goes by so much faster than the first one. By this time you are so fucking invested in these characters stories you don’t want the series to be over. I NEED MORE. I am going to miss scheming face. I need more scheming face. Actually had almost tears about Matthias because HOW DARE THEY, but also thank god it was him because I ship Nina and Nikolai, and really only would have been okay with Matthias or Inej dying. I was surprised that one of my precious babies died, but none of the bad guys die? NONE OF THEM? I mean their world’s were ruined, but both could potentially recover, at least somewhere else. So…. just kill them. Whatever.
CAMEO ALERT. Sturmhond, Genya, Zoya, appear and David is mentioned, and even Tolya gets a mention (although not by name). Actually cried when Kaz shows Inej her family coming off the boat, because many boys can give you flowers, but only Kaz will give you your family. ❤

Quotes:

“I would have come for you. And if I couldn’t walk, I’d crawl to you, and no matter how broken we were, we’d fight our way out together-knives drawn, pistols blazing. Because that’s what we do. We never stop fighting.”

“Maybe there were people who lived those lives. Maybe this girl was one of them. But what about the rest of us? What about the nobodies and the nothings, the invisible girls? We learn to hold our heads as if we wear crowns. We learn to wring magic from the ordinary. That was how you survived when you weren’t chosen, when there was no royal blood in your veins. When the world owed you nothing, you demanded something of it anyway.”

“Fear is a phoenix. You can watch it burn a thousand times and still it will return.”

“No mourners, no funerals. Another way of saying good luck. But it was something more. A dark wink to the fact that there would be no expensive burials for people like them, no marble markers to remember their names, no wreaths of myrtle and rose.”

“How many times have you told me you’re a monster? So be a monster. Be the thing they all fear when they close their eyes at night.”

“And that was what destroyed you in the end: the longing for something you could never have.”

“We meet fear. We greet the unexpected visitor and listen to what he has to tell us. When fear arrives, something is about to happen.”

“Suffering is like anything else. Live with it long enough, you learn to like the taste.”

Six of Crows (Six of Crows #1) by Leigh Bardugo

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Goodreads Summary:

Criminal prodigy Kaz Brekker has been offered wealth beyond his wildest dreams. But to claim it, he’ll have to pull off a seemingly impossible heist:

Break into the notorious Ice Court
(a military stronghold that has never been breached)

Retrieve a hostage
(who could unleash magical havoc on the world)

Survive long enough to collect his reward
(and spend it)

Kaz needs a crew desperate enough to take on this suicide mission and dangerous enough to get the job done – and he knows exactly who: six of the deadliest outcasts the city has to offer. Together, they just might be unstoppable – if they don’t kill each other first.

My Thoughts:

First of all this cover is gorgeous. I love how the crow forms the cityscape.  This series is my favorite over the Grishaverse series.  This book is so good. I am so glad my friend made me read it. I’m sobbing over the fact that there are only 2 books in the series. There is everything awesome in this book, old-timey gangs, magic, and heists. So this book is a spin off of the Grisha series, and I had no idea that it would be even better! Good news too, you don’t have to read that series to read this one, although there are little spoilers for the other series, I think it’s fine to start here. Kaz is my number one favorite character here. He is the mastermind of the group, and he is epic and cold and amazing. Jesper is a huge flirt and the groups sharpshooter. Nina is the Grisha of the group, she is sassy and flirty and I love her, Inje is the former circus star, turned assassin acrobat. My Kaz-Inje ship has sailed and I’m not sorry. Matthias is viking like, and an obvious love for Nina, even though he hates her and hates everything. Lastly there is Waylan the merchant’s son who is last on my faves list. I don’t care about his character at all but I do ship Jespar and Waylan hard, because Jespar is so cute, and the only time Waylan can quip is when Jespar is talking to him. All of the characters were great. It did take me a bit because there are so many perspectives, and DAMN but all of the characters are very in depth and have backstories and you know so much about them that you love them all. I love tortured soul characters and here is a group of them, all hanging out. This book is soooooo long. SO LONG. Plus you have to have the second book right away because cliffhanger much? Yes. GRRRR.

Quotes:

“Many boys will bring you flowers. But someday you’ll meet a boy who will learn your favorite flower, your favorite song, your favorite sweet. And even if he is too poor to give you any of them, it won’t matter because he will have taken the time to know you as no one else does. Only that boy earns your heart.”

“No mourners. No funerals. Among them, it passed for ‘good luck.”

“When everyone knows you’re a monster, you needn’t waste time doing every monstrous thing.”

“She’d laughed, and if he could have bottled the sound and gotten drunk on it every night, he would have. It terrified him.”

“He needed to tell her…what? That she was lovely and brave and better than anything he deserved. That he was twisted, crooked, wrong, but not so broken that he couldn’t pull himself together into some semblance of a man for her. That without meaning to, he’d begun to lean on her, to look for her, to need her near.”

 

Ruin and Rising (The Grishaverse #3) by Leigh Bardugo

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Goodreads Summary:

The capital has fallen.

The Darkling rules Ravka from his shadow throne.

Now the nation’s fate rests with a broken Sun Summoner, a disgraced tracker, and the shattered remnants of a once-great magical army.

Deep in an ancient network of tunnels and caverns, a weakened Alina must submit to the dubious protection of the Apparat and the zealots who worship her as a Saint. Yet her plans lie elsewhere, with the hunt for the elusive firebird and the hope that an outlaw prince still survives.

Alina will have to forge new alliances and put aside old rivalries as she and Mal race to find the last of Morozova’s amplifiers. But as she begins to unravel the Darkling’s secrets, she reveals a past that will forever alter her understanding of the bond they share and the power she wields. The firebird is the one thing that stands between Ravka and destruction—and claiming it could cost Alina the very future she’s fighting for.

My Thoughts:

See my review for book one here. and my review for book two here.  The end of the trilogy. I’m both happy and sad. Happy that I loved the series and sad that it is over (for now.)

So my love of the Darkling ending in Book 2 with my new love Stormhund, and because the Darkling just gets creepier and creepier, and it’s hard to love him anymore. Nikolai needed to be in this book WAY more. How can you give him to me in Book 2 and not have him all throughout this book. HOW DARE YOU?! My friend told me there will be a Nikolai book next year though, so YAY. But NO a year!?! Damnit man. I didn’t like how they were stuck in the cave for so long it was boring and drawn out. I still hate Mal and after the huge plot twist, I was LIKE YAAAAAAAS stab him Alina. GET HIM! But even that did not work out. Lame.

Siege and Storm (The Grishaverse #2) by Leigh Bardugo

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Goodreads Summary:

Darkness never dies.

Hunted across the True Sea, haunted by the lives she took on the Fold, Alina must try to make a life with Mal in an unfamiliar land. She finds starting new is not easy while keeping her identity as the Sun Summoner a secret. She can’t outrun her past or her destiny for long.

The Darkling has emerged from the Shadow Fold with a terrifying new power and a dangerous plan that will test the very boundaries of the natural world. With the help of a notorious privateer, Alina returns to the country she abandoned, determined to fight the forces gathering against Ravka. But as her power grows, Alina slips deeper into the Darkling’s game of forbidden magic, and farther away from Mal. Somehow, she will have to choose between her country, her power, and the love she always thought would guide her–or risk losing everything to the oncoming storm.

 My Thoughts:

THIS SERIES! I reviewed the first book earlier. So I was iffy during the first book because of all the Russian style words and names, and I’m not good with stuff I can’t pronounce. BUT OMG IT WAS SO GOOD. So of course I started the second one immediately after, and it was still so fucking good. STURMHOND!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Swoon so hard. I LOVE HIM. My friend told me her favorite character was Nickolai, and I was like well I haven’t gotten to him yet, but how are you not mentioning Sturmhond, because he’s the best. So she was all

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I like that Alina is getting these darker style powers and really getting into it. I know you aren’t supposed to like that but I still ship Alina and the Darkling….so there’s that. She’s a bad ass. I still don’t like Mal. I feel like he is such a dick. He is jealous and not understanding at all. Just grrrr. Grow the fuck up MAL! I am glad that I have book 3 already because there is no way I am waiting to dig in.

Quotes:

“When people say impossible, they usually mean improbable.”
“What is infinite? The universe and the greed of men.”
“Oh, and the easiest way to make someone furious is to tell her to calm down.”
“Weakness is a guise. Wear it when they need to know you’re human, but never when you feel it.”

Shadow and Bone (The Grishaverse #1) by Leigh Bardugo

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Goodreads Summary:

Surrounded by enemies, the once-great nation of Ravka has been torn in two by the Shadow Fold, a swath of near impenetrable darkness crawling with monsters who feast on human flesh. Now its fate may rest on the shoulders of one lonely refugee.

Alina Starkov has never been good at anything. But when her regiment is attacked on the Fold and her best friend is brutally injured, Alina reveals a dormant power that saves his life—a power that could be the key to setting her war-ravaged country free. Wrenched from everything she knows, Alina is whisked away to the royal court to be trained as a member of the Grisha, the magical elite led by the mysterious Darkling.

Yet nothing in this lavish world is what it seems. With darkness looming and an entire kingdom depending on her untamed power, Alina will have to confront the secrets of the Grisha . . . and the secrets of her heart.

Shadow and Bone is the first installment in Leigh Bardugo’s Grisha Trilogy.

My Thoughts:

I read The Language of Thorns and I LOVED IT SO MUCH! So I knew I needed to read the Grishaverse books. I started this book in 2015 and DNF, but I was literally another person back then. I did not like it enough to finish the first time through, because of the names. I don’t like it when the names are unpronounceable to me.  The city names, the name of the Darklings guards. GRRRRRRRRRR. Oh fantasy, why do you do this to me?

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BUT I LOVED LANGUAGE OF THORNS! And my friend Candace recommended this series, so I gave it another shot. I still had trouble with all the names, because I don’t know how to pronounce  things at all. Putting that aside, this plot and the characters were really good! I don’t really enjoy many fantasy books because of the name thing. I do like how this was set in an old world (like many fantasy novels.) All of the city names, and foods seem very Russian. I even had to looked it up to see if the author was Russian, but no. The story was great. I love that she didn’t go into too much detail on every page, but you still get fully immersed in Ravka. I loved Alina. She is sassy, and self-deprecating. She was very well written. Mal is her childhood best friend, and love interest. AND I HATE HIM. He is charming, and charismatic, and gets the girls. Alina pines after him, and he is oblivious. UNTIL SHE GETS POWER! Then she stops being sickly, scrawny, and weak. So now Mal is all Hey girl, and Alina comes running. BUT FUCK THAT. It reminds me of the girls on Maury who have an extreme makeover so they can get their childhood crush, and then the crush is like oh yah I can see what a great person you are now that you are hot. NO. The Darkling. I admit, I shipped it. Obviously it doesn’t work out, but in the beginning. Alina also becomes friends with Genya! YAAAAS. I loved her. She is a Grisha servant to the Queen, but she is full of snarky comments, and style.

Quotes:

“The problem with wanting,” he whispered, his mouth trailing along my jaw until it hovered over my lips, “is that it makes us weak.”
“They are orphans again, with no true home but each other and whatever life they can make together on the other side of the sea.”
“This was his soul made flesh, the truth of him laid bare in the blazing sun, shorn of mystery and shadow. This was the truth behind the handsome face and the miraculous powers, the truth that was the dead and empty space between the stars, a wasteland peopled by frightened monsters.”

 

The Language of Thorns by Leigh Bardugo and illustrated by Sara Kipin

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Goodreads Summary:

Love speaks in flowers. Truth requires thorns.

Travel to a world of dark bargains struck by moonlight, of haunted towns and hungry woods, of talking beasts and gingerbread golems, where a young mermaid’s voice can summon deadly storms and where a river might do a lovestruck boy’s bidding but only for a terrible price.

Inspired by myth, fairy tale, and folklore, #1 New York Times–bestselling author Leigh Bardugo has crafted a deliciously atmospheric collection of short stories filled with betrayals, revenge, sacrifice, and love.

Perfect for new readers and dedicated fans, these tales will transport you to lands both familiar and strange—to a fully realized world of dangerous magic that millions have visited through the novels of the Grishaverse.

This collection of six stories includes three brand-new tales, all of them lavishly illustrated with art that changes with each turn of the page, culminating in six stunning full-spread illustrations as rich in detail as the stories themselves.

My Thoughts:

OMG THIS BOOK YOU GUYS! I haven’t read the other books in the Grishaverse, but now I have to. THIS BOOK WAS AMAZING. All of the fairy tales were soooooo good. I loved recognizing the stories I am used to mixed into these like, The Little Mermaid, Hansel and Gretel, Cinderella, and The Nutcracker. I love how it isn’t Disney style fairy tales. The princess does not always marry the first prince that she meets. Good does not always triumph. The villain isn’t always who you think it is. AND THE ARTWORK! IT IS SO BEAUTIFUL! I love that it shows women can be beautiful, and good, and evil, and dark, and cunning, and just anything.

Quotes:

“You see, some people are born with a piece of night inside, and that hollow place can never be filled – not with all the good food or sunshine in the world. That emptiness cannot be banished, and so some days we wake with the feeling of the wind blowing through, and we must simply endure it as the boy did.”

“We were not made to please princes.”

“This goes to show you that sometimes the unseen is not to be feared and that those meant to love us most are not always ones who do.”

“This is the problem with making a thing forbidden. It does nothing but build an ache in the heart.”

“She held each sorrow like a chafing grain and grew her grudges like pearls.”

“But hope rises like water trapped by a dam, higher and higher, in increments that mean nothing until you face the flood.”

“A thousand desperate wishes have been spoken on these shores, and in the end they were all the same: Make me someone new.”

“I can bear ugliness, I find the only thing I cannot live with is death.”

“Wanting is why people get up in the morning. It gives them something to dream of at night. The more I wanted, the more I became like them, the more real I became.”

End of Year Survey

Every year the blog Perpetual Page Turner hosts an end of year survey full of bookish questions.

Best books of 2017

Note: The survey is for books you read throughout the year, no matter when they were published, and is not limited to just books that came out in 2017!!

 

 

 

Number Of Books You Read: 104
Number of Re-Reads: 1
Genre You Read The Most From: young adult

 

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1. Best Book You Read In 2017?

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2. Book You Were Excited About & Thought You Were Going To Love More But Didn’t?

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 3. Most surprising (in a good way or bad way) book you read?
Wink Poppy Midnight by April Genevieve Tucholke

 4. Book You “Pushed” The Most People To Read (And They Did)?

Gemina by Amie Kaufman

 5. Best series you started in 2017? Best Sequel of 2017? Best Series Ender of 2017?

The Ruins of Gorlan by John Flanagan

Gemina by Amie Kaufman

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 6. Favorite new author you discovered in 2017?

Moïra Fowley-Doyle

7. Best book from a genre you don’t typically read/was out of your comfort zone?

How to Hang a Witch by Adriana Mather historical Fiction

 8. Most action-packed/thrilling/unputdownable book of the year?

The Dead House by Dawn Kurtagich

 9. Book You Read In 2017 That You Are Most Likely To Re-Read Next Year?

Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda by Becky Albertalli The movie comes out next year

10. Favorite cover of a book you read in 2017?

Suicide Notes from Beautiful Girls by Lynn Weingarten

11. Most memorable character of 2017?

Wink Poppy Midnight by April Genevieve Tucholke Poppy

 12. Most beautifully written book read in 2017?

Spellbook of the Lost and Found by Moïra Fowley-Doyle

13. Most Thought-Provoking/ Life-Changing Book of 2017?

Hearts Are Like Balloons by Candace Robinson

 14. Book you can’t believe you waited UNTIL 2017 to finally read? 

Water for Elephants by Sara Gruen

 15. Favorite Passage/Quote From A Book You Read In 2017?

“Being with you makes me feel like I deserve to be loved. Like I’m less of a monster. Like if you trust me that means I can trust myself.”
Moïra Fowley-Doyle, Spellbook of the Lost and Found

16.Shortest & Longest Book You Read In 2017?

 

Guts by Chuck Palahniuk Shortest

Gemina by Amie Kaufman longest

 

 17. Book That Shocked You The Most

Haunted by Chuck Palahniuk

 

18. OTP OF THE YEAR (you will go down with this ship!)

Quinsey Wolfe's Glass Vault by Candace Robinson Perry and August (I know and I don’t care)

 

19. Favorite Non-Romantic Relationship Of The Year

Dorothy Must Die by Danielle  Paige Amy and Pete

20. Favorite Book You Read in 2017 From An Author You’ve Read Previously

The Field Guide and The Seeing Stone by Holly Black

21. Best Book You Read In 2017 That You Read Based SOLELY On A Recommendation From Somebody Else/Peer Pressure:

Roar by Cora Carmack

22. Newest fictional crush from a book you read in 2017?

Quinsey Wolfe's Glass Vault by Candace Robinson Maisie

23. Best 2017 debut you read?

Quinsey Wolfe's Glass Vault by Candace Robinson

24. Best Worldbuilding/Most Vivid Setting You Read This Year?

The Ruins of Gorlan by John Flanagan

25. Book That Put A Smile On Your Face/Was The Most FUN To Read?

Water for Elephants by Sara Gruen

26. Book That Made You Cry Or Nearly Cry in 2017?

Water for Elephants by Sara Gruen

27. Hidden Gem Of The Year?

The Language of Thorns by Leigh Bardugo

28. Book That Crushed Your Soul?

Hearts Are Like Balloons by Candace Robinson

29. Most Unique Book You Read In 2017?

Gemina by Amie Kaufman

30. Book That Made You The Most Mad (doesn’t necessarily mean you didn’t like it)?

Wink Poppy Midnight by April Genevieve Tucholke Loved it, but get it together Midnight

 

Things I Just Had To Know About Jessica from Novel Cravings

Today I am honored to host Jessica from Novel Cravings on our blog!!

Continue reading “Things I Just Had To Know About Jessica from Novel Cravings”