Friday, March 16, 2018

Witch's Pyre (Worldwalker #3)

                Hello happy readers!  So today I have my thoughts on a series ender I have been meaning to read for a while and finally did.  I read the first book of the trilogy and loved it.  Same for book two until the end just broke me and left me nervous about continuing on.  Then my bestie wanted to borrow a book and saw the cover for book one and asked if I had read this series (because yes I have plenty of books on my shelves I haven’t read and thus not a huge fan of loaning out those until I have read them first) and I had the first couple so I let her borrow book one.  I had planned to read the final book this year anyways so this would give me incentive.  Mind you the last time she was reading a book it took forever and a day for me to be able to talk about it but this one she flew through in a couple days.  So I had to get on it and that weekend at work I finally read the amazing finale for the Worldwalker trilogy by Josephine Angelini, Witch’s Pyre.  I have previously reviewed the first books:  Trial by Fire & Firewalker.

 Rating:  5 Willstones

                Lily has come a long way from the sick girl she used to be in the world we know.  She has traveled worlds, gained power as a witch, become a leader, and faced dangerous travels and battles.  She has also lost a lot.  Her first crush and best friend and in a different way the man she loves after he betrayed her in the worst possible way.  Now Lily and her coven are introduced to a new society unlike anything they have ever seen.  A society that lives with the Woven but something isn’t right in the perfect utopia and Lily is determined to find the answer.  Along the way she begins to uncover a deeper truth.  There is still nuclear war to be prevented and many sides to fight on.  Can Lily find a way to victory that doesn’t turn her into the tyrannical other her, Lillian or cost the lives of all those she cares for?

                So when I went into this book I was nervous.  At the end of the last book Rowan did something horrible.  He betrayed her in the worst possible way to me.  He took her will stones from her and locked her in a cage.  Knowing that she was still haunted by her last similar encounter and promising to protect her from such a fate being the one to do it made him dead in my eyes.  So I was worried he’d show up and magically be forgiven and all is well.  I wasn’t near ready to forgive him.  Even waiting almost two years between books as soon as I saw his name my anger was right back at peak level for him.  But I was so thrilled that the story didn’t go that way.  There was so much happening and I loved the way things played out.
                This new city that has been thriving all these years.  The discovery of a whole world who knew they were there but didn’t try to help.  There is a lot going on and a lot of mystery and intrigue happening.  I liked getting to know more about the others and the coven bond as it grew stronger for some and weaker for others.  When Rowan did show up, because we knew he was, it was natural for me.  The way the story plays out is so much better than I could have imagined.  There is the conflict outside our little coven from all the challenges they face but also within as everyone in the coven has their own baggage and thus react differently to things. 

                I really enjoyed getting to see a wider aspect of the world in this book.  We see the west coast but we also learn about how the rest of the world is doing.  It is such a vast contract to how they were doing in the colonies.  We also got to learn more about the Woven and the different types and what makes them unique.  We traveled a ton and used up some serious magic as the plots were uncovered.  It was a thrill ride for me.  I got the character work I have come to love in this series but I also got the action we expect as the series comes to an end and so many irons are in the fire.  Battle is on the horizon and lines have been drawn. 
                I saw several things coming from the start but others caught me off guard in the best way.  There was death and tears but also life and joy.  I covered the emotional spectrum in this for sure.  The end was very fitting and really encompassed what we had been building towards.  There is a real payoff in the end and while I would love to go back into the world and continue to see the “after” and more from those who made it I am also completely at ease with the end.  There was nothing that was really left hanging everything was pretty much covered and I am so happy with how things happened.  So many characters got some great arcs overall with real depth.  It was amazing.  I highly recommend this series!!!

                Until next time…

Thursday, March 15, 2018

Movie Corner #4

                Hello happy movie fans!  So with the weather as nice as it was I did try to get a bit of work done in the yard but I also don’t like yard work so it doesn’t last long til I call it a day and I can treat myself to a movie after.  That said here is what I’ve seen the last two weeks:

Red Sparrow:  4 Stars
                So I was intrigued by this movie as I am with most spy movies.  I also was a huge fan of La Femme Nikita back in the day and I have liked most of the JLaw movies I have seen so yeah it was a given I was going to go see this one.  This movie really was a deep spy thriller and went further in places than I was expecting it to many times.  I enjoyed the back and forth in the story and the constant mind games / espionage at play never knowing who was doing what and for what reasons.  I enjoyed the movie and it was just what it claims to be so I’d call it a win. 

Death Wish: 4 Stars
                So this was a movie I was anticipating because I love me some Bruce Willis action.  He is a surgeon who has a pretty great life but then tragedy strikes and even though he’s always played by the rules he finds the police can’t do much to help.  So he starts to take things into his own hands.  I liked the movie.  It was a bit of action, revenge, and humor.  I found it to be an entertaining movie that may have some flaws but I went in for a good time and got it. 

Gringo:  4.5 Stars
                So this trailer looked pretty funny and it was enough to bring me in to see it.  But I was happily surprised the story had a lot more going on than I first thought and I found myself super entertained by the shenanigans going on.  It had a good storyline and fun characters to love or hate.  Harold / Gringo was hilarious and had me cracking up at the convoluted mess he is in and I love it. 

A Wrinkle in Time:  3.5 Stars
                So I never read this book.  I had no idea what it was about really but kids going on a journey to save the ones father and traveling through time or the universe.  Light vs dark kind of thing.  Well I knew the trailer looked beautiful and I was curious.  So there were some pretty amazing scenes that were visually beautiful which I adored but there were others that just really seemed very drab given the amazement I had just saw.  It didn’t balance I guess for me.  The story also while having its beautiful moments and meanings had a lot happening and a lot of the time I wasn’t 100% sure what was going on.  It jumped around without a whole lot of explanation.  Things felt a bit rushed as well.  The beginning of the movie had some beautiful scenes that really make you feel for the characters and real emotions from the actors specifically the vulnerability and pain but then as it progresses into the journey of the story we kind of lose it at many times throughout.  Plus the lack of shock over all the crazy new OMG moments caught me.  Also it included one of my bigger pet peeves involving bullies (that they are cruel and do unforgiveable things but they are really just victims of their own circumstances and that means it’s okay but it’s not it gives them depth sure but hurting someone because you are hurt never makes it okay) that I will never condone or let slide.  Overall I didn’t hate it but I didn’t love it.  I wouldn’t mind checking it out if it was on TV or something but I don’t think I’ll be buying it for my collection. 


                What movies have you seen recently?  What should I see?  This weekend I’m super excited to see the new Tomb Raider and of course the book to movie adaptation Love, Simon.

Wednesday, March 14, 2018

~Can't Wait Wednesday: The Smoke Thieves~

                Can't Wait Wednesday is a weekly event, hosted by Wishful Endings.  Waiting on Wednesday has been don for some time so I am switching it up for now!  Basically books that are not yet out that we are dying to get our hands on.  This week’s pick is:

The Smoke Thieves (The Smoke Thieves #1) by Sally Green
Out:  5/1

From Goodreads:
                A princess, a traitor, a hunter and a thief.  Four teenagers with the fate of the world in their hands.  Four nations destined for conflict.

                In Brigant, Princess Catherine prepares for a loveless political marriage arranged by her brutal and ambitious father.  In Calidor, downtrodden servant March seeks revenge on the prince who betrayed his people.  In Pitoria, feckless Edyon steals cheap baubles for cheaper thrills as he drifts from town to town.  And in the barren northern territories, thirteen-year-old Tash is running for her life as she plays bait for the gruff demon hunter Gravell.

                As alliances shift and shatter, and old certainties are overturned, our four heroes find their past lives transformed and their futures inextricably linked by the unpredictable tides of magic and war.  Who will rise and who will fall?  And who will claim the ultimate prize?

Why I’m Waiting:
                I just recently discovered it and it looks rather interesting.  I'm not familiar with the authors other titles but it seems to be getting some solid reviews from some of my Goodreads friends so that is promising. 

                What are you waiting on?  Tell me below what you think of this title and leave a link to your WoW as well so I can check it out.

Monday, March 12, 2018

Ready Player One

                Hello happy readers!  So there are some books that you always want to read but keep pushing off for one reason or another and for me this was Ready Player One by Ernest Cline.  I heard so many amazing things from reviewers I trusted but it was always something I would check out “soon” but that never seemed to be the right time.  Then the movie was being made and I knew I had a deadline.  I wanted to read before the movie.  Again was on my wish list but hadn’t bought it until I saw the trailer for the movie and knew it was time.  So I got the audiobook because it seemed like the best idea (plus I had a credit so it was cheaper) plus it was narrated by Will Wheaton which I found rather fun.  Now I finished it before the movie and here are my thoughts on the book alone.

Rating:  5 Stars

                Ready Player One takes place in a future world that has went down the drain.  The world is horrible a living dystopia really and the main way of life is virtual reality the utopia known as the OASIS.  Worlds upon worlds exist within this space and you can do anything and be anyone you want.  Most people spend more time in the OASIS than in the real world, even more since the creators’ death that launched the hunt.  Upon his death all of his wealth including control over the OASIS is on hold for whoever finds his hidden Easter egg.  He has hidden keys throughout the game and you must get all three and pass through their challenges to move on but the winner will find the ultimate prize.  The creator was obsessed with 80’s life from games and pop culture and lived for this world.  Now the race is on and everyone is searching for the egg some willing to kill to control the OASIS and if they do life as it is known will end in the utopia world you can create. 

                So I’m not a big gamer.  I enjoy playing some games for sure but mostly with others.  Still I can see the appeal just as I would rather spend hours reading/listening to my book hold up somewhere in my own little world I can see how others find the same in games.  I also suck at most games which is probably why I never got really into them. Still the world that is built is amazing.  The OASIS is amazing.  This whole virtual world that basically turns to raising people in it from education, work, and so on.  I understand it right away and was pulled in.  Wade is one of those kids he makes his own way in this harsh world and has dedicated years of his life to solving this puzzle.  He clearly loves the hunt and research for it logging in every show/movie/music/game/etc from the 80’s he is an encyclopedia of knowledge and can site most of it off the cuff.  He is doing what he can to search but traveling in the OASIS costs money and he doesn’t have any hence the copious amounts of research.

“For a bunch of hairless apes, we’ve actually managed to invent some pretty incredible things.”

                The search had gone so long without the first key being found that many had given up the hunt.  Still as a discovery is made the hunt has a huge resurgence and things get a whole lot more interesting.  Wade is suddenly a OASIS celebrity and everyone is trying to find out who he really is (because no one uses their real data online when you can be anyone/anything you want to be) and the information he found.  Soon the game is a foot yet again and the stakes become even higher as a cooperation reaches out and makes an offer for his assistance making the consequences clear if he chooses not to take the offer.  Danger is real and not just in the virtual world.  This is pretty great since the majority of the story takes place in VR making the consequences seem less than dire but really it never occurred to me.  I always felt the stakes were high for sure.  If you die in VR you start from scratch including everything you had earned which when you are in a race that would be a hard blow. 

“You’d be amazed how much research you can get done when you have no life whatsoever.”

                Cline also has a way of writing that makes the VR world seem as vital as the real world.  It is in many ways given the importance and prevalence of it in the world.  The world is full of fantastic characters that you want to know more about, moral dilemmas, and questions about life all on top of this epic journey full of 80’s nostalgia and some of the best lines and quips around.  I fell in love with this book and the writing.  Some parts made me cringe, laugh, gasp and more.  It was a thrill ride from start to finish and I couldn’t wait to see how it all played out in the end.  For a book wrote several years ago it was shockingly on point and I loved every moment of it.  It has also given me this urge to check out some classic/older games and some of the older more obscure movies referenced in the book I had never heard of before.  The only down side is having read it so close to the movie release now when I see a trailer I see differences and I just hope the movie is even half as good as the book because I’m stoked to see it.  And I will see it the earliest time it’s available! 

“That was when I realizes, as terrifying and painful as reality can be, it’s also the only place where you can find true happiness.  Because reality if real.”

                Until next time…

Saturday, March 10, 2018

~Stacking the Shelves #45~

                Welcome to Stacking the Shelves was created by Tynga and the full details can be found on her page.  Basically you showcase the books you bought or received each week.  Little, or not so little, weekly book hauls.  

E-Books for Review:
Sky in the Deep  by Adrienne Young

Hero at the Fall (Rebel of the Sands #3) by Alwyn Hamilton

                These are all my new goodies!  One is a debut and the other is a series ender so whoohoo I'm excited.  I need to get to some serious reading/listening I’m falling behind of where I want to be.  Share a link below with what goodies you got this week. 

Friday, March 9, 2018

The Midnight Star (The Young Elites #3)

                Hello happy readers!  So the weather in Georgia has been a bit crazy going from a few days in the 80's then a sudden drop and it's 52 inside my house right now.  I prefer the cold because I love my fireplace and blankets and getting cozy but I could do without the sudden shifting back and forth my sinuses have no idea what is happening lol.  That said I hope you all have a wonderful weekend ahead.  I got way off schedule on my last days off because Jessica Jones season 2 dropped on Netflix and I found it as it dropped and thought it would be a good idea to binge all 13 episodes in one sitting instead of sleep so…tonight at work should be fun.  But for now let me share my thoughts on a series ender I was finally able to finish up this year:  The Midnight Star (The Young Elites #3) by Marie Lu.  I previously reviewed the first two titles The YoungElites & The Rose Society.

Rating:  5 Stars

                We have been on a wild ride with Adelina.  She was new to the world of powers and she quickly grew into her powers.  She suffered and she fought.  Now she is queen and she is set to take on the rest of the world.  She had good intentions but over time her cruelty grows and the darkness within her has begun to spiral out against even her.  The past is not that far behind her as she is forced to face old wounds and risk herself to save ever Elite including the world as a whole.  The Roses and Daggers must journey together despite the past pains for the sake of the world. 

                We have been on a journey with Adelina and over time she has gone from a girl who has been through a very harsh and tough life that you wanted to succeed.  When she was cruel it made sense given her history and what she was dealing with.  Overtime she grew more powerful and her anger and cruelty grew to exceed what was needed tipping over the point making her a real villain of the story.  She took the whole revenge thing very seriously.  I felt bad while reading because part of me totally understood her reasoning for some of it.  Her hatred for those who treated the marked badly or differently, turning the tables on them I understood in some way but I also understood it wasn't something that could last because it just flipped the script instead of fixing the problem.  She was also very quick to be suspicious and lash out.  Again I understood given what she went through and knew but it grew each time. 

                I think while this story is very fantasy I could see similarities to mental health in them.  As her own darkness turned on her it became clear that she is also the victim of her story as it was inside her pushing her.  She could know something but then her mind would somehow turn things around until she was no longer sure of things.  That is something I think many people have dealt with and can relate to.  For me I wasn't sure if I would be able to really grow to love Adelina again as I did in the beginning but as this story played on I really did start to feel for her more.  I loved seeing the Roses and the Daggers together again.  It was both hard and amazing to see them come together again both suspicious of the other.  Danger is on all sides it seems but the world is at stake and that puts them in the same boat….at least for the time being. 

                I enjoyed getting to see all my favorite characters and see their interactions.  I loved seeing how the different relationships melded together.  Everyone has changed through the series and watching as the different characters react and grow over time both separate and together was beautiful.  I don't know how much more I can say about the story without reaching into spoilers but to say that for the end…I had the feels.  I was not 100% sure how I felt about it right away but really had to think on it after I had processed it a bit more.  I was expecting my heart to be broken but then it happened in a way that just ripped it out even more roughly than I planned for.  Lots of tears and feels but in the end it was a fitting end to the story that we started telling in book one.  I enjoyed the store Lu wrote for us with these Elites and the world that they sought to save even when it wasn't always good to them. 

                Until next time…

Wednesday, March 7, 2018

~Can't Wait Wednesday: Catwoman: Soulstealer (DC Icons #3)~

                Can't Wait Wednesday is a weekly event, hosted by Wishful Endings.  Waiting on Wednesday has been don for some time so I am switching it up for now!  Basically books that are not yet out that we are dying to get our hands on.  This week’s pick is:

Catwoman:  Soulstealer (DC Icons #3) by Sarah J. Maas
Out:  8/7

From Goodreads:
                When the Bat's away, the Cat will play.  It's time to see how many lives this cat really has…

                Two years after escaping Gotham City's slums, Selina Kyle returns as the mysterious and wealthy Holly Vanderhees.  She quickly discovers that with Batman off on a vital mission, Batwing is left to hold back the tide of notorious criminals.  Gotham City is ripe for the taking.

                Meanwhile, Luke Fox wants to prove he has what it takes to help people in his role as Batwing.  He targets a new thief on the prowl who seems cleverer than most.  She has teamed up with Poison Ivy and Harley Quinn, and together they are wreaking havoc.  This Catwoman may be Batwing's undoing.

Why I’m Waiting:
                Auto-buy author.  Duh.  Plus while I've never read the comics or watched the anime I do enjoy all the DC movies/shows as of late and I love the idea of a book dedicated to our Catwoman.  Plus seeing as it seems we will be getting a bad girl squad I'm down to see what happens.  Oh and I've enjoyed the other books in this DC Icons series thus far so lets go.           

                What are you waiting on?  Tell me below what you think of this title and leave a link to your WoW as well so I can check it out.