Review: Flame in the Mist by Renee Ahdieh

Publisher: Hodder & Stoughton General Division
Release Date: May 16, 2017
Format: Paperback
ISBN: 9781473657977
Pages: 416
Read in: August 2017
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The only daughter of a prominent samurai, Mariko has always known she’d been raised for one purpose and one purpose only: to marry. Never mind her cunning, which rivals that of her twin brother, Kenshin, or her skills as an accomplished alchemist. Since Mariko was not born a boy, her fate was sealed the moment she drew her first breath.

So, at just seventeen years old, Mariko is sent to the imperial palace to meet her betrothed, a man she did not choose, for the very first time. But the journey is cut short when Mariko’s convoy is viciously attacked by the Black Clan, a dangerous group of bandits who’ve been hired to kill Mariko before she reaches the palace.

The lone survivor, Mariko narrowly escapes to the woods, where she plots her revenge. Dressed as a peasant boy, she sets out to infiltrate the Black Clan and hunt down those responsible for the target on her back. Once she’s within their ranks, though, Mariko finds for the first time she’s appreciated for her intellect and abilities. She even finds herself falling in love—a love that will force her to question everything she’s ever known about her family, her purpose, and her deepest desires.


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I really enjoyed this story. It was well written and I loved the overall plot and world-building. However, there’s just something about this book that left me with mixed feelings about the story.

I think the first half of the story dragged a little bit and as a result, the last thirty pages or so were packed with a bit too much action. The beginning was quite slow, and it was halfway through the book before I really got interested. There was a point where I was thinking that this seemed a pretty typical YA plot, and seemed quite predictable, until the last thirty or so pages where everything just got out of control really quickly. At that point, it actually got a little difficult to follow, and I had to re-read a few passages, but besides that, I quite liked it. I’m just a little sad about the ending – it was such a good ending/bad cliffhanger, and I really want the next book soon. Continue reading

Review: Lord of Shadows by Cassandra Clare

So while this view is spoiler free for Lord of Shadows, it does contain minor spoilers for the previous books in the series (Lady Midnight). If you don’t want to be spoiled, I highly suggest you go read that first and then come back.

Publisher: Simon & Schuster
Release Date: May 23, 2017
Format: Paperback
ISBN: 9781471116650
Pages: 720
Read in: June 2017
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Goodreads Summary:

Continue reading

Down The TBR Hole #1

I found out about this feature idea which is hosted by Lia at Imaginary Places on Paper, and I thought it was a brilliant idea because I have so many books which I’ve had just sitting on my shelves waiting to be read. It’s also a really good chance for me to talk about some books that I want to read, but haven’t read, since I don’t like talking about them unless I’ve done some research.

The artwork for this feature is also by the lovely Lia and it is just gorgeous as well. I love this idea, and hopefully it means I can cull my TBR to a more reasonable size, and also talk about books I wouldn’t normally talk about on my blog! So without further ado, here’s the first five books on my TBR that I’ll be discussing:


Ewan Pendle and the White Wraith by Shaun Hume

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While this book sounds really intriguing, especially the fantasy world-building part of the story, I’m not really interested in reading any fantasy books at the moment (nor do I have the time), but I think that this will live up to the wonderful things I’ve read about it so far. The author actually reached out to me, and due to time restraints with everything going on, I really don’t have time to read this, but he’s pretty cool, too.

Verdict: KEEP Continue reading

Review: The Royals Series by Nichole Chase

I read the entire series in the space of about two days, so I thought I’d just make a single post on my thoughts for all three books.

The series is a romance story featuring royalty of a fictional country, Lilaria. Each book revolves around two people, one who is from the royal family and one who is not.

Overall, I really enjoyed reading this series. While it’s not the best written literature out there, there were many aspects I enjoyed, the main one being how easy they were to read and get through within a short amount of time.

Warning: There are minor spoilers for each review, so I suggest you go and read the books first, and come back if you don’t like spoilers.


Book One: Suddenly Royal

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Publisher: Avon
Release Date: April 23, 2013
Pages: 464
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Samantha Rousseau is a master’s student studying wildlife biology. When she receives an invitation for a meeting with a duchess of Lilaria, she finds who she is and her world turned upside down. Alex D’Lynsal on the other hand, is the crown prince of Lilaria and is trying to keep his name clean when he visits American, but quickly finds himself hopelessly falling in love with Samantha.

Out of all the books, this one is my favourite. Although I don’t think the plot lives up to the expectations set by the official blurb, it was enjoyable nonetheless.

I found that there were aspects of the plot that were highlighted by the summary did not have as great significance as the summary made out it to be. Alex’s “playboy” status for one – there was literally nothing about him mentioning he was trying to keep a clean image, and it was probably only mentioned twice or three times by Samantha at most in the entire book. Continue reading

Review: The Winner’s Kiss by Marie Rutkoski

While this review does not contain spoilers for this book, it does contain spoilers for the earlier books of this series. If you have not read The Winner’s Curse or The Winner’s Crime yet, I suggest you do that and then come back and read this.

Publisher: Bloomsbury Children’s
Release Date: March 24, 2016
Format: Paperback
ISBN: 978140885874
Pages: 484
Read in: May 2017
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Goodreads Summary:

Continue reading

Review: The Wrath and the Dawn by Renee Ahdieh

Publisher: G.P. Putnam’s Sons Books for Young Readers
Release Date: May 12, 2015
Format: Paperback
ISBN: 9780399176654
Pages: 395
Read in: December 2016
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Goodreads Summary:

One Life to One Dawn.

In a land ruled by a murderous boy-king, each dawn brings heartache to a new family. Khalid, the eighteen-year-old Caliph of Khorasan, is a monster. Each night he takes a new bride only to have a silk cord wrapped around her throat come morning. When sixteen-year-old Shahrzad’s dearest friend falls victim to Khalid, Shahrzad vows vengeance and volunteers to be his next bride. Shahrzad is determined not only to stay alive, but to end the caliph’s reign of terror once and for all.

Night after night, Shahrzad beguiles Khalid, weaving stories that enchant, ensuring her survival, though she knows each dawn could be her last. But something she never expected begins to happen: Khalid is nothing like what she’d imagined him to be. This monster is a boy with a tormented heart. Incredibly, Shahrzad finds herself falling in love. How is this possible? It’s an unforgivable betrayal. Still, Shahrzad has come to understand all is not as it seems in this palace of marble and stone. She resolves to uncover whatever secrets lurk and, despite her love, be ready to take Khalid’s life as retribution for the many lives he’s stolen. Can their love survive this world of stories and secrets?

Inspired by A Thousand and One Nights, The Wrath and the Dawn is a sumptuous and enthralling read from beginning to end.


I loved it. Struggled for a little bit but then once I got into it, I couldn’t stop, simply because it was so damn good. (Also, I was unable to sleep but that’s an entirely different matter).

The writing was brilliant – it took me a while to get settled in but after about 100 pages I was fully immersed. Continue reading

instagram

Let me cut to the chase: I’ve started a bookstagram! Okay, that’s technically a lie, so let me explain.

Way back when I first started this blog in 2015, I also created an instagram account with the same username as this blog, kaleidoscopeofbooks. I’ve posted a couple of photos on it, then abandoned it because it was too much effort to keep switching between accounts.

I recently got the ACOWAR box by @theyachronicles ! I love and adore both the box and the book 💕

A post shared by Katrina | ☆ (@kaleidoscopeofbooks) on

Two years later, and many Instagram features have been introduced and the interface has drastically changed compared to what it used to be. There are instagram stories, non-square photos can be posted without ruining your square aesthetic, and posting multiple photos in one post is now a option instead of having to spam everyone’s feed. Two years later, right when there are assignments to be written and music to be practised, this girl decided that revisiting this old account is a brilliant idea! And so the bookstagram kaleidoscopeofbooks was reborn.

So it’s actually been a couple of days since I last posted on that instagram, but yeah anyway..

For more (semi-frequent) bookish content to add to your instagram feed, follow me!