• Book Reviews

    The Illuminae Files Review +Why you should read it!

    *Hello! Welcome to my review of The Illuminae Files. I’m trying my hand at book reviews again. These are some of the trickiest things for me to write because I want to stay objective and basically not gush about the books. We shall see how this goes. πŸ˜†

    My spoiler free review of The Illuminae Files. This series is one of the best I've ever read! I'm so glad I stopped being a book snob about sci-fi books.

    Before The Illuminae Files

    I picked up Illuminae on somewhat of a whim. I had been seeing it EVERYWHERE on Instagram and I was mildly intrigued by it. It was one of those, “I should read that series. Someday I’ll get to it.”, things. So when I saw Illuminae on Book Outlet I decided to grab it and see what all the hype was about. (p.s. Book Outlet is a website where you can get really great deals on brand new books. You’re welcome. 😁)

    I can’t remember if I knew it was a sci-fi or not. I have sworn for most of my reading life that I didn’t like sci-fi and I would never read it. The Illuminae Files showed me how much of a book snob I was being. πŸ€“

    I had zero expectations for this series. I didn’t think I would like it at all. Imagine my surprise when I couldn’t put it down.

    Illuminae

    This was the most anxiety-inducing book I have ever read. And I mean that in a good way. I could not put this book down. It’s kind of hard to lose interest in a book that never loses direction or pacing. It starts off with a terrorist attack on a colony out in the middle of nowhere space.

    The main character is Kady and I think I want to be her when I grow up. She’s got mad computer hacking skills and she basically saves everyone’s lives. There is heartbreak and the feeling of loss that comes from inexcusable deaths. It’s a story about fighting for what is right and doing the best with what you have. It’s one of the most amazing books I’ve ever read.

    Gemina

    Obviously, I had to read the next book in the trilogy almost immediately after Illuminae. This book tells the story of Hanna and Nik. One is the daughter of the commander of a jump station. The other is a convicted felon, who resides on said jump station illegally. When the jump station gets infiltrated by some very bad, bad guys, Hanna has to use all of her training to get out of this mess alive and save as many people as she can. Gemina is about what you do when you feel like you have nothing left to fight for.

    Obsidio

    First, let me say that Obsidio wrecked me. I cried. I laughed. I internally screamed. I probably snorted a time or two. It was so good I stayed up all night just to finish it. I can’t say a lot without giving away too many spoilers, but this book is the best in the trilogy and I LOVED all of them. This series has made it on to my favorites of all time list. It’s a story about the fight for humanity, survival, and living a life worth dying for.

    Why I think you should read the Illuminae Files

    If you have considered reading this series and just haven’t done it, please stop considering and read it. It has so much meaning behind it. Even if you are like me and swear you’ll never read a sci-fi book, consider changing your mind. I’m so glad I did. I’m glad I didn’t allow myself to be a book snob when it came to the Illuminae Files. I would have missed out on such a great series.

    That’s all from me!

    Happy reading,

    Alicen

    P.S. Want to know how many books I have on my #unreadshelf? You can see that number here!

  • Book Reviews

    Strange the Dreamer: Book Review

    *This is my first official attempt at a long-form book review. I’ve been trying to stay away from these because I don’t really care to read them. But, I know that a lot of people look to reviews to help them decide if they should read a book or not. My goal is to write honest, spoiler free, reviews of books that I really liked. I’m just trying to spread the book love and I thought the best way to do that is through a review.

    Strange the Dreamer book review.

    Strange the Dreamer Synopsis

    Lazlo Strange has spent his entire life dreaming about the mystical city of Weep. For two hundred years the world has heard nothing from the Unseen City. Many people believe it never existed. As the city has passed into legend, Lazlo has been gathering every scrap of knowledge he can about the lost city. He always wanted to travel there, but it always felt out of reach. That is until travelers arrive in Zosma. Warriors from a long dead time. Their arrival changes everything for Lazlo.

    My thoughts.

    I picked up Strange the Dreamer because of @book_roast’s enthusiasm about it. If a book can get someone that excited then I’m either going to love it or hate it. In this case, I absolutely loved it.

    Laini Taylor is a goddess with words. Her stories are magical and imaginative. Her characters are complex and I loved most of them. It was actually hard not to love them all because they were so human. Their circumstances may not have been very relatable, but their emotions and feelings were really relatable. I felt all of the feels while reading this masterpiece. It was beautiful and heartbreaking.

    One bad thing.

    There was one aspect of this book that you may not like and that was the instalove between the two main characters. When I read the book I didn’t even notice it until after I finished reading it. And even now, looking back, I can see why they fell in love so quickly.

    Both of them lived lives where people tolerated them and used them, but no one took the time to really know them. It wasn’t until they met one another that they really felt seen and accepted. This was a highly emotional encounter. And for two young people I can see why they fell in love so fast. I mean, people do it in real life all the time. So, it seems fitting for Laini to have included it in this book.

    Overall reaction.

    This book was much more than I anticipated and expected. It was an experience from front to back. If you love whimsical and magical tales of dreamers and stories then you should check out Strange the Dreamer.

    Let me know what you thought about this review. Was it helpful? What books would you like to see me review?

    Happy reading,

    Alicen

    P.S. You can get in touch with me here in the comments or @thecozyshelf on Instagram.

    P.P.S. Want to know what I’m reading this month? Check out my April TBR + everything you need to know about the O.W.L.s Readathon!