The Queen of the Tearling by Erika Johansen

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Original Title: The Queen of the Tearling

Year Published: 2014

Published by:  Harper

Number of Pages: 448

First Sentence: Kelsey Glynn sat very still, watching the troop approach her homestead. 

Goodreads Rating: 4/5

Plot:

Magic, adventure, mystery, and romance combine in this epic debut in which a young princess must reclaim her dead mother’s throne, learn to be a ruler—and defeat the Red Queen, a powerful and malevolent sorceress determined to destroy her.

On her nineteenth birthday, Princess Kelsea Raleigh Glynn, raised in exile, sets out on a perilous journey back to the castle of her birth to ascend her rightful throne. Plain and serious, a girl who loves books and learning, Kelsea bears little resemblance to her mother, the vain and frivolous Queen Elyssa. But though she may be inexperienced and sheltered, Kelsea is not defenseless: Around her neck hangs the Tearling sapphire, a jewel of immense magical power; and accompanying her is the Queen’s Guard, a cadre of brave knights led by the enigmatic and dedicated Lazarus. Kelsea will need them all to survive a cabal of enemies who will use every weapon—from crimson-caped assassins to the darkest blood magic—to prevent her from wearing the crown.

Despite her royal blood, Kelsea feels like nothing so much as an insecure girl, a child called upon to lead a people and a kingdom about which she knows almost nothing. But what she discovers in the capital will change everything, confronting her with horrors she never imagined. An act of singular daring will throw Kelsea’s kingdom into tumult, unleashing the vengeance of the tyrannical ruler of neighboring Mortmesne: the Red Queen, a sorceress possessed of the darkest magic. Now Kelsea will begin to discover whom among the servants, aristocracy, and her own guard she can trust.

But the quest to save her kingdom and meet her destiny has only just begun—a wondrous journey of self-discovery and a trial by fire that will make her a legend . . . if she can survive.

My thoughts:

This was a  good book and enjoyed it very much. It felt pretty original and it was easy to read. It had plotlines that were absolutely unexpected and that had you on the edge of your seat. It was gritty at times though and went pretty dark in places. However, it was never too much and nothing too worrying.

I loved how Kelsey wasn’t immediately put on a pedestal by the people around her. Instead, the opposite happened and she had to fight tooth and nail to get people to listen to her. I did want to hit some of the people she was surrounded by though because they had just decided that she was worthless and didn’t even want to give her a chance to prove them wrong.

I did ruin the trilogy for myself though as I scrolled through the reviews of the other two books. I did not like what I read (especially about the ending of the third and final book) and will therefore not bother reading the rest of the books.

Do I recommend it? 

Yes, I do.

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Eldtronen av Rick Riordan (Kanekrönikan #2)

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Originaltitel: The Throne of Fire

Publicerad: 2015

Publicerad av:  Modernista (stort tack till förlaget för recensionsexemplaret)

Antal sidor: 507

Första meningen: Carter här.

Goodreads betyg: 4/5

Handling: 

Ända sedan dagen då det forntida Egyptens gudar släpptes lösa i vår moderna värld har Carter Kane och hans syster Sadie haft stora problem. Som ättlingar till Livets Hus besitter familjen Kane samma krafter, men de illmariga gudarna har inte gett dem särskilt lång tid till att träna upp sina förmågor på Brooklyn House, skolan för unga magiker. Och nu har kaos-ormen Apophis, deras hittills farligaste fiende, dykt upp. Om de inte hindrar honom från att bryta sig loss inom några få dagar kommer världen att gå under.
Ännu en typisk vecka för familjen Kane, med andra ord…

Mina tankar:

Den här boken var riktigt spännande. Riordan är en av mina favorit författare och jag har hitills inte läst en bok av honom som jag inte tyckt om. Denna var definitivt inte undantaget. Andra boken i en serie brukar vara mycket sämre än de andra böckerna. Så är inte fallet med denna bok. Den var spännande och mycket underhållande.

Vi får här lära känna Sadie och Carter mer och se hur de hanterar sina nya krafter. Det är inte alltid lätt och de får kämpa ganska ofta, både med utomstående krafter och med sig själva. Riordan är duktig på att skapa karaktärer som är lätta att relatera till och som känns realistiska. Både Sadie och Carter har karaktärsdrag, känslor och tankar som man känner igen från när man själv var tonåring. Underbart att de inte direkt blir superhjältar med extremt bra självförtroende och som hanterar sina nya liv med bravur, och att de istället får kämpa lite och faktiskt möta motstånd.

Handlingen är riktigt bra men det är allt jag tänker skriva för att inte spoila den 😛

Rekommenderar jag den? 

Ja det gör jag.

A Torch Against the Night by Sabaa Tahir (Ember Quartet #2)

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Original Title: A Torch Against the Night

Year Published: 2016

Published by:  Razorbill

Number of Pages: 452

Goodreads Rating: 5/5

Plot: 

Elias and Laia are running for their lives. After the events of the Fourth Trial, Martial soldiers hunt the two fugitives as they flee the city of Serra and undertake a perilous journey through the heart of the Empire.

Laia is determined to break into Kauf—the Empire’s most secure and dangerous prison—to save her brother, who is the key to the Scholars’ survival. And Elias is determined to help Laia succeed, even if it means giving up his last chance at freedom.

But dark forces, human and otherworldly, work against Laia and Elias. The pair must fight every step of the way to outsmart their enemies: the bloodthirsty Emperor Marcus, the merciless Commandant, the sadistic Warden of Kauf, and, most heartbreaking of all, Helene—Elias’s former friend and the Empire’s newest Blood Shrike.

Bound to Marcus’s will, Helene faces a torturous mission of her own—one that might destroy her: find the traitor Elias Veturius and the Scholar slave who helped him escape…and kill them both.

My thoughts:

This was a fantastic sequel to An Ember in the Ashes. I absolutely adored the first book and this was just as good, if not better. Sequels can be pretty bad but this definitely lived up to the hype.

Laia is amazing and I love the fact that she doesn´t magically become a superhero like some other heroines have a tendency to do. Instead, she tries her best and she is scared at times but the wish to help the people around her and her family give her the motivation to keep on fighting when the going gets though.

I never thought that I would care for Helene, but I was totally wrong. She is much more complex than you might think and she absolutely won me over in this book. I can´t wait to read more about her in the third book (which arrived just yesterday!).

Elias is one of my favourite male characters of all time and he did not disappoint in this one. Just like both Laia and Helene, he is a complex character with both good and bad sides. Seeing him interact with both these ladies was fun and it was nice to get to know him better as well.

The plot you might ask? Well, it was pretty awesome. Road trip medieval style, Prison Break, magic, a tournament, side-characters that will break your heart and a cliffhanger that has you tearing your hair out in desperation. Yeah, it´s pretty awesome.

Do I recommend it? 

Yes, I really do.

50-day bookish challenge – Day 43: Free rant, go ahead, we all know you want to.

Why do most villains in ya-books have to be male? And also the heroines love interest? I don’t really understand this. It is nice once in a while to read such a book but it seems like most books have this type of plot device. Can’t we have more books where the villain is female, perhaps even the same age as the heroine, and just as complex as the male villains. A female villain can also be a love interest for a heroine (like come one, it’s the 21st century people!). We can also, of course, have male heroes with female villains, and male heroes with male villains/love interests. And hey, the villain does not even have to be one of the main love interest. They can just be the villain. If the author want’s the villain of the story to redeem themselves they should not just be able to do so because they’ve fallen head over heels in love with the heroine/hero of the story.

My point is, I want more books where the villain isn’t male or the love interest, or both of them. I know there are already several books like this out there, I have read many of them, but I feel like there can be even more.