Monday, May 22, 2017

Milky Way of Books Presents: Solar System Genre Reviews. Where I visit Fantasy! (Part 1)


Hello everyone! This is a new feature I have been planning for a while. Inspired by space and my love for reading, I've categorized each genre into respective "solar systems". You'll see collective reviews on books I've read with a bio of their respective authors.

For this week, I plan to 'visit' Fantasy. There've been many books I've read of this genre on March and April and loved too much!






Wintersong by S. Jae-Jones
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Summary from GoodReads

Wintersong is a maze of beauty and darkness, of music and magic and glittering things, all tied together with exquisite writing. This is a world you will want to stay lost in.” —Marie Lu, #1 New York Times bestselling author

The last night of the year. Now the days of winter begin and the Goblin King rides abroad, searching for his bride…

All her life, Liesl has heard tales of the beautiful, dangerous Goblin King. They’ve enraptured her mind, her spirit, and inspired her musical compositions. Now eighteen and helping to run her family’s inn, Liesl can’t help but feel that her musical dreams and childhood fantasies are slipping away.

But when her own sister is taken by the Goblin King, Liesl has no choice but to journey to the Underground to save her. Drawn to the strange, captivating world she finds—and the mysterious man who rules it—she soon faces an impossible decision. And with time and the old laws working against her, Liesl must discover who she truly is before her fate is sealed.

Dark, romantic, and powerful, S. Jae-Jones's Wintersong will sweep you away into a world you won’t soon forget.



BUY ON 



REVIEW

This was one of the most anticipated books on my February TBR list. Yet, I was able to read only in the middle of the month.

Wintersong, as mentioned in many different reviews, is truly inspired by the story of the Labyrinth and the Goblin King. It also has a small reference to the myth of Persephone and Hades, since the author ties nicely old folklore and German history.

Liesl is the daughter of a family who struggles to hold her place in society. Her brother is talented in music and her sister is vain and to my opinion, plainly annoying. When an old promise with the Goblin King is brought into Liesl's memories, she will struggle to save her sister and discover more about herself and the myth behind the Goblin King.

The descriptions were written beautifully. I was entranced with the world of the Goblin King and the creatures that live in it. And while Liesl was also annoying in the first part of the book, she became a part of the King's life, using their love for music to bring them closer.

And there is sexual tension in this book. It's not only songs and poetry. There is a raw emotion binding the Goblin King and Liesl and when the final pages came I was crying over their fates.

The ending of the book held a tiny surprise which the author tied with a very known part of a composer's life. I was very surprised also to see that there'll be a sequel because the main characters have to be together! I want to know what will happen!






About the author:

S. Jae-Jones, called JJ, is an artist, an adrenaline junkie, and the author of Wintersong, forthcoming from Thomas Dunne in February 2017.

Born and raised in sunny Los Angeles, she lived in New York City for ten years before relocating down to Dixie, where she is comfortably growing fat on grits and barbecue. When not writing, she can be found rock-climbing, skydiving, taking photographs, drawing pictures, and dragging her dog on ridiculously long hikes.









The Star-Touched Queen by Roshani Chokshi
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Summary from GoodReads

Fate and fortune. Power and passion. What does it take to be the queen of a kingdom when you’re only seventeen?

Maya is cursed. With a horoscope that promises a marriage of death and destruction, she has earned only the scorn and fear of her father’s kingdom. Content to follow more scholarly pursuits, her whole world is torn apart when her father, the Raja, arranges a wedding of political convenience to quell outside rebellions. Soon Maya becomes the queen of Akaran and wife of Amar. Neither roles are what she expected: As Akaran’s queen, she finds her voice and power. As Amar’s wife, she finds something else entirely: Compassion. Protection. Desire…

But Akaran has its own secrets—thousands of locked doors, gardens of glass, and a tree that bears memories instead of fruit. Soon, Maya suspects her life is in danger. Yet who, besides her husband, can she trust? With the fate of the human and Otherworldly realms hanging in the balance, Maya must unravel an ancient mystery that spans reincarnated lives to save those she loves the most…including herself.



BUY ON 



REVIEW

I admit it. I had the HC copy of the book since 2016, yet I had to see the release of "A Crown of Wishes" in order to get into reading this book.
The pros of this lovely story are the world-building and the SE asian mythology. The glossary in the final pages of the book also helped me understand more about the creatures of this book. Just like in Wintersong, this book has a touch of Hades and Persephone in it with a glitter of reincarnation added too.

Maya is outcasted from her father's harem because of her ominous astrology. She is considered already dead by the wives and when they refer to her, they speak in the padt tense, which is horrible. When she meets Amar, under difficult circumstances, she will travel to him into the Underworld and discover the wild and dangerous beauty of it and the secrets hidden behind Amar's existence.

While I loved the plot, the romance felt a little forced and a little insta-love. But the journey Maya underwent till the end of the book proved to be the factor that made her a strong heroine who can save herself and her loved ones. She is smart, know how to bargain and despite her fears and faces them.

Roshani Chokshi's descriptions could also rival Laini Taylor's. Which says much about the world building. ;)




About the author:

Roshani Chokshi is the New York Times bestselling author of The Star-Touched Queen and the upcoming A CROWN OF WISHES, releasing March 28, 2017. Her work has appeared in Strange Horizons, Shimmer, and Book Smugglers. Her short story, "The Star Maiden," was longlisted for the British Fantasy Science Award.













Strange the Dreamer by Laini Taylor
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Summary from GoodReads

Strange the Dreamer is the story of: 

the aftermath of a war between gods and men
a mysterious city stripped of its name
a mythic hero with blood on his hands
a young librarian with a singular dream
a girl every bit as perilous as she is imperiled
alchemy and blood candy, nightmares and godspawn, moths and monsters, friendship and treachery, love and carnage.

Welcome to Weep.






BUY ON 



REVIEW

I don't know how to describe this book! The sheer beauty of Laini's writing always make me feel like I'm part of the plot! The characters are always amazing! And CAN WE TALK ABOUT LAZLO? My sweet bookworm with the crooked nose! I loved his intelligence and curiosity, his vivid imagination! I think with Lazlo Laini described EVERY book lover out there! I want a boyfriend like him!

And the city of Weep! OMG, for a moment I felt like I've entered a Tolkien book! Not to mention, the history, the geography, the glossary and the mythology behind the world building! And the romance between Sarai and Lazlo! Beautiful and heart-breaking.

And there was also a cliffhanger! How will I wait for the next book! I'll definitely re-read this book!





About the author:

Hi! I write fantasy books. My latest is STRANGE THE DREAMER, about a young librarian, a mythic lost city, and the half-human children of murdered gods. Check it out :-) Before that I wrote the DAUGHTER OF SMOKE & BONE trilogy, which has been translated into 32 languages. It's about a blue-haired art student raised by monsters, a broken angel, and a war that has raged for 1000 years in another world. I also wrote LIPS TOUCH: THREE TIMES, which was a National Book Award finalist, and the DREAMDARK books. As well as various short stories and novellas.