Category Archives: Ya Fantasy

Review: Cruel Beauty by Rosamund Hodge

CruelBeautyCruel Beauty
(Cruel Beauty Universe, #1)
By: Rosamund Hodge
Publisher: Balzer + Bray
Published: Jan. 28 2014
Genre: YA Fantasy
Rating:

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Based on the classic fairy tale Beauty and the Beast, Cruel Beauty is a dazzling love story about our deepest desires and their power to change our destiny.

Since birth, Nyx has been betrothed to the evil ruler of her kingdom-all because of a foolish bargain struck by her father. And since birth, she has been in training to kill him.

With no choice but to fulfill her duty, Nyx resents her family for never trying to save her and hates herself for wanting to escape her fate. Still, on her seventeenth birthday, Nyx abandons everything she’s ever known to marry the all-powerful, immortal Ignifex. Her plan? Seduce him, destroy his enchanted castle, and break the nine-hundred-year-old curse he put on her people.

But Ignifex is not at all what Nyx expected. The strangely charming lord beguiles her, and his castle—a shifting maze of magical rooms—enthralls her.

As Nyx searches for a way to free her homeland by uncovering Ignifex’s secrets, she finds herself unwillingly drawn to him. Even if she could bring herself to love her sworn enemy, how can she refuse her duty to kill him? With time running out, Nyx must decide what is more important: the future of her kingdom, or the man she was never supposed to love.

 

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Review: Flying Blind by Deborah Cooke

FlyingBlindFlying Blind
(The Dragon Diaries Trilogy, #1)
By: Deborah Cooke
Publisher: NAL
Published: June 7, 2011
Genre: YA Fantasy
Rating:

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Zoë Sorensson is perfectly normal, except she’s been told she’s destined for great things. Zoë’s the one female dragon shapeshifter of her kind. But Zoë is at the bottom of the class when it comes to being Pyr and her powers are AWOL, so she’s sent to a Pyr boot camp.

Zoë quickly realizes that she has to master her powers yesterday, because the Pyr are in danger and boot camp is a trap. The Mages want to eliminate all shifters and the Pyr are next in line-unless Zoë and her friends can work together and save their own kind.

 

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Excerpt: Love Charms and Other Catastrophes by Kimberly Karalius [Giveaway]

lovecharmsLove Charms and Other Catastrophes
(Grimbaud, #2)
By: Kimberly Karalius
Publisher: Swoon Reads
Release Date: May 17, 2016
Genre: YA Fantasy Romance

Goodreads

Aspiring love charm maker Hijiri Kitamura was excited to come back to Grimbaud for her sophomore year-until she learns about the upcoming charm making competition. Grimbaud has just started to recover from the tyranny of Zita’s love fortunes and it would be too easy for the winning charm maker to take Zita’s place. The only solution is for Hijiri, with the support of her friends and fellow rebels, to win the contest herself.

Unfortunately, that’s easier said than done, especially when Love itself has decided to meddle in Hijiri’s life. Concerned that it’s favorite charm maker has given up on finding a boyfriend of her own, Love takes matters into its own hands and delivers the perfect boyfriend to her in a giftwrapped box…literally.

 

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Review: Holding Smoke by Elle Cosimano

holding smokeHolding Smoke
By: Elle Cosimano
Publisher: Hyperion
Published: May 3, 2016
Genre: YA Fantasy
Rating:

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John “Smoke” Conlan is serving time for two murders but he wasn’t the one who murdered his English teacher, and he never intended to kill the only other witness to the crime. A dangerous juvenile rehabilitation center in Denver, Colorado, known as the Y, is Smoke’s new home and the only one he believes he deserves.

But, unlike his fellow inmates, Smoke is not in constant imprisonment. After a near death experience leaves him with the ability to shed his physical body at will, Smoke is able to travel freely outside the concrete walls of the Y, gathering information for himself and his fellow inmates while they’re asleep in their beds. Convinced his future is only as bright as the fluorescent lights in his cell, Smoke doesn’t care that the “threads” that bind his soul to his body are wearing thin-that one day he may not make it back in time. That is, until he meets Pink, a tough, resourceful girl who is sees him for who he truly is and wants to help him clear his name.

Now Smoke is on a journey to redemption he never thought possible. With Pink’s help, Smoke may be able to reveal the true killer, but the closer they get to the truth, the more deadly their search becomes. The web of lies, deceit, and corruption that put Smoke behind bars is more tangled than they could have ever imagined. With both of their lives on the line, Smoke will have to decide how much he’s willing to risk, and if he can envision a future worth fighting for.

 

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Review: The Abyss Surrounds Us by Emily Skrutskie

abyssThe Abyss Surrounds Us
By: Emily Skrutskie
Publisher: Flux
Published: Feb. 8, 2016
Genre: GLBT YA Fantasy
Rating:

Goodreads

For Cassandra Leung, bossing around sea monsters is just the family business. She’s been a Reckoner trainer-in-training ever since she could walk, raising the genetically-engineered beasts to defend ships as they cross the pirate-infested NeoPacific. But when the pirate queen Santa Elena swoops in on Cas’s first solo mission and snatches her from the bloodstained decks, Cas’s dream of being a full-time trainer seems dead in the water.

There’s no time to mourn. Waiting for her on the pirate ship is an unhatched Reckoner pup. Santa Elena wants to take back the seas with a monster of her own, and she needs a proper trainer to do it. She orders Cas to raise the pup, make sure he imprints on her ship, and, when the time comes, teach him to fight for the pirates. If Cas fails, her blood will be the next to paint the sea.

But Cas has fought pirates her entire life. And she’s not about to stop.

 

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Review: Silver Shadows by Richelle Mead

silvershadowsSilver Shadows
(Bloodlines, #5)
By: Richelle Mead
Publisher: Razorbill
Published: July 29, 2014
Genre: Paranormal YA
Rating:

Goodreads

In The Fiery Heart, Sydney risked everything to follow her gut, walking a dangerous line to keep her feelings hidden from the Alchemists.

Now in the aftermath of an event that ripped their world apart, Sydney and Adrian struggle to pick up the pieces and find their way back to each other. But first, they have to survive.

For Sydney, trapped and surrounded by adversaries, life becomes a daily struggle to hold on to her identity and the memories of those she loves. Meanwhile, Adrian clings to hope in the face of those who tell him Sydney is a lost cause, but the battle proves daunting as old demons and new temptations begin to seize hold of him. . . .

Their worst fears now a chilling reality, Sydney and Adrian face their darkest hour in this heart-pounding fifth installment in the New York Times bestselling Bloodlines series, where all bets are off.

 

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Review: The Fiery Heart by Richelle Mead

9833184The Fiery Heart
(Bloodlines, #4)
By: Richelle Mead
Publisher: Razorbill
Published: Nov. 19, 2013
Genre: Paranormal YA
Rating:
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Goodreads

Sydney Sage is an Alchemist, one of a group of humans who dabble in magic and serve to bridge the wolds of humans and vampires. They protect vampire secrets – and human lives.

In The Indigo Spell, Sydney was torn between the Alchemist way of life and what her heart and gut were telling her to do. And in one breathtaking moment that Richelle Mead fans will never forget, she made a decision that shocked even her…

But the struggle isn’t over for Sydney. As she navigates the aftermath of her life-changing decision, she still finds herself pulled in too many directions at once. Her sister Zoe has arrived, and while Sydney longs to grow closer to her, there’s still so much she must keep secret. Working with Marcus has changed the way she views the Alchemists, and Sydney must tread a careful path as she harnesses her profound magical ability to undermine the way of life she was raised to defend. Consumed by passion and vengeance, Sydney struggles to keep her secret life under wraps as the threat of exposure — and re-education — looms larger than ever.

 

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Review: Queen of Shadows by Sarah J. Maas

QoSQueen of Shadows
(Throne of Glass, #4)
By: Sarah J. Maas
Publisher: Bloomsbury
Published: Sept. 1, 2015
Genre: YA Fantasy
Rating:
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Goodreads

Everyone Celaena Sardothien loves has been taken from her. But she’s at last returned to the empire—for vengeance, to rescue her once-glorious kingdom, and to confront the shadows of her past…

She has embraced her identity as Aelin Galathynius, Queen of Terrasen. But before she can reclaim her throne, she must fight.

She will fight for her cousin, a warrior prepared to die for her. She will fight for her friend, a young man trapped in an unspeakable prison. And she will fight for her people, enslaved to a brutal king and awaiting their lost queen’s triumphant return.

 

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Review: Shadow Kiss (Graphic Novel) by Richelle Mead

ShadowkissedShadow Kiss
(Vampire Academy Graphic Novel, #3)
By: Richelle Mead, Leigh Dragoon (Adapter), Emma Vieceli (Illustrator)
Publisher: Razorbill
Published: Dec. 31, 2013
Genre: Paranormal/YA/Graphic Novel
Rating:
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Goodreads

It’s springtime at St. Vladimir’s Academy, and Rose is close to graduation, but since making her first Strigoi kills, things haven’t felt quite right. She’s having dark thoughts, behaving erratically, and worst of all …might be seeing ghosts. Consumed by her forbidden love with her tutor Dimitri and protecting her best friend, the Moroi princess Lissa, Rose is in no state to see the deadly threat that will change her entire world – and make her choose between the two people she loves most.

 

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Review: The Indigo Spell by Richelle Mead

IndigoSpellThe Indigo Spell
(Bloodlines, #3)
By: Richelle Mead
Publisher: Razorbill
Published: Feb. 12, 2013
Genre: Paranormal Young Adult
Rating:
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Goodreads

Sydney Sage is an Alchemist, one of a group of humans who dabble in magic and serve to bridge the worlds of humans and vampires. Alchemists protect vampire secrets – and human lives.

In the aftermath of a forbidden moment that rocked Sydney to her core, she struggles to draw the line between her Alchemist teachings and what her heart is urging her to do.

Then she finally tracks down the elusive, enigmatic Marcus Finch – a former Alchemist who the organization denies exists, and who lives in shadows, on the run. With Marcus’s help, Sydney realizes that the group she’s been loyal to her whole life has been hiding the truth from her. Is it possible that her golden lily tattoo might have more power over her than she thinks?

As she struggles to come to terms with what that might mean, Sydney is compelled to use her magical powers to track down an evil magic user who is targeting powerful young witches. Using magic goes against everything she always thought she believed, but she realizes that her only hope is to embrace her special blood – or else she might be next.

Forging her own way is harder than Sydney ever dreamed. Maybe by turning off her brain – and following her heart – she’ll be able to finally figure out where she belongs.

 

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