• Book Reviews

    Daughter of Smoke and Bone Spoiler-Free Review

    *Oh. My. Goodness. Guys. This is my new favorite book! I love finding a new series and just falling in love with it. I am not new to Laini Taylor’s writing as I’ve read Strange the Dreamer and Muse of Nightmares, but this story is on another level! Please enjoy my spoiler-free review for Daughter of Smoke and Bone, the first book in the trilogy.

    spoiler free review of daughter of smoke and bone

    Daughter of Smoke and Bone

    Author: Laini Taylor
    Rating: {4.9/5 ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️}

    C is for Character: 5/5

    I so loved the characters in this book! I especially loved Issa, Brimstone, and Zuzana. Madrigal and Akiva are such sweet characters. I rooted for Karou the whole time. My favorite character was Karou. I don’t always like the main character so this kind of surprised me. I absolutely love how complex all of the characters are. Even the secondary characters have substance to them. They are as much a part of the story as the main characters.

    W is for World: 4.5/5

    Obviously, as with any new book, nothing made sense at first. I also thought there was too much mystery. It was borderline annoying and I was scared that I wouldn’t like the book. But then so much was revealed and I fell in love with the world and the characters. I love that Laini lets the way the world works to provide some of the plot twists rather than the character’s decisions deciding all the plot twists. I mean, the character’s decisions are super important to the story but so is the world that it’s written in.

    P is for Plot: 5/5

    The plot was super good! I was intrigued from the first sentence. “Once upon a time, an angel and a devil fell in love. It did not end well.” There were amazing aspects to the plot that I just loved. I loved how everything fell together at the end. The story is nowhere near finished but I got the closure that I needed from this book. 

    W is for Writing Style: 5/5

    I’ve read Strange the Dreamer and Muse of Nightmares by Laini. The writing style in Daughter of Smoke and Bone is not quite as poetic and lyrical but it is still beautiful. I love the way Laini describes things and the way the characters talk. I just love Laini’s writing.

    E is for Enjoyment: 5/5

    I struggled for a bit during the first half of the book. It was good and holding my interest but there was just too much mystery. The characters were withholding too much information. But, by the middle of the book, everything changed and things started to be revealed. It was such a good book. I can’t wait to read the next two novels in the trilogy!

    In Conclusion.

    I absolutely loved this book! I recommend it to people who loved Strange the Dreamer and those who like darker fantasy. If you love enduring love stories then I think this book might be for you.

    Happy reading,

    Alicen

    P.S. You can read all the books I plan to read in June 2019 here!

    P.P.S. Want to connect? You can always find me on Instagram @thecozyshelf! I love chatting about books with all of you.

  • Book Reviews

    My book review for Winter by Marissa Meyer

    *Hello! So I’m trying something new. I have been keeping my reviews of the books I read in my bullet journal, but I’ve come to not really enjoy handwriting the reviews. It hurts my wrist to hand write all of that. I’ve decided that I should just put them on my blog. So here’s my spoiler-free book review for Winter by Marissa Meyer.

    Here's my spoiler free book review for Winter by Marissa Meyer. I loved this book so much. It was such a great ending to The Lunar Chronicles!

    If you’ve been here a while you know I’ve created my own book reviewing process (which is inspired by @book_roast). You also know that I’ve changed the process a few times. Anyway, you can read about my current process in this blog post.

    Here’s my book review for Winter:

    Winter is the fourth book in The Lunar Chronicles written by Marissa Meyer. It covers the final leg of Cinder’s quest to dethrone the biggest baddie I’ve ever met in a book. I don’t like to disclose a lot of the plot because I feel that’s not fair to you as the reader. And I’m all about fairness.

    C is for Character {4/5}

    So, it’s going to be hard for me not to gush through this review, but I will try. My favorite character is Iko. She is so sassy and fun! I also have a warm spot in my heart for Cinder and Kai, Scarlet and Wolf. I like Thorne as well. Characters I didn’t like were Amiery and Levana. Cress, Winter, and Jacin were not my favorites but they were still really well written. I think my favorite thing about all of the characters is how well they work together. The Rampion crew are one of the greatest group of friends I have ever come across and I am going to miss them!

    W is for World {4.5/5}

    By this point in the series I’m very well versed in the world. I love how this is sci-fi without being sci-fi. It’s set in the real world, just in the future. So there’s lots of advanced tech and it’s all really exciting! Winter takes place on Luna, which is basically a colonized moon. It was very cool to see how life was lived on a moon that has no atmosphere

    P is for Plot {5/5}

    Be still my heart, this book was so good. It was full of the perfect amount of plot twists and revelations! It’s my favorite book in the series after Cinder. I was very invested in the plot as I just wanted my babies to live happily ever after!

    W is for Writing Style {5/5}

    As I said before, by the fourth book in the series I am very used to Marissa Meyer’s writing style. It was easy to get back into the story and I had no troubles following the story progression.

    E is for Enjoyment {5/5}

    Overall I adored this book. It had such a satisfying ending with a small promise for more. I think I will be rereading this series at some point.

    In conclusion.

    I gave Winter an overall score of 4.7/5 {⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️}. I’m so glad I kicked off my June reading with this book. It touched my heart in all the right places. It was exciting and heart-pounding and just perfect.

    I hope you enjoyed this short review of Winter by Marissa Meyer. I loved this series and I was really sad to say goodbye to the Rampion Crew. If you’ve read The Lunar Chronicles what do you think about it?

    Happy reading,

    Alicen

    P.S. Have you read any of The Lunar Chronicles? If so which book is your favorite?

    P.P.S Check out my June 2019 TBR right here!

    Want to connect? You can always find me on Instagram @thecozyshelf

  • 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. 😆

    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. 🤓

    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!