The Bone Season Review

17199504The Bone Season by Samantha Shannon

Series: The Bone Season #1

Published: August 20, 2013

Genre: Dystopian/Fantasy

Rating: 5/5

GOODREADS             AMAZON

Enter the world of Paige Mahoney, a gifted clairvoyant, a “dreamwalker,” in the year 2059. Her natural talents are considered treasonous under the current regime. Snatched away to a secret prison, she encounters another race, the Rephaim, creatures who wish to control the powers of Paige and those like her. One in particular will be assigned as her keeper, her trainer. But his motives are mysterious. To regain her freedom, Paige must learn to trust, in the prison where she is meant to die.

I really enjoyed this book and can’t believe it took me so long to pick up! I originally purchased it in 2015 when Samantha Shannon and Sarah J. Maas did a joint signing less than an hour away from me. I’m really glad I have a signed copy now, because this series easily falls within my favorites of all time (FoaT)!

The world of the Scion was enrapturing–sort of a mix of Dystopian fiction, and X-Men, which are two things I love. While the world building did take a while, it was needed because Shannon has so many layers to the world. At times, the jargon of Scion London could become very confusing because a word was used pages before it was defined. There were a few parts where I had to stop and flip around in confusion because I wasn’t really sure what was being described. It was for this reason The Bone Season was put down on my first attempt at a read-through. This book definitely requires full attention (for all my fellow read-six-books-at-a-time-rs).

The tension between Paige and Warren is absolutely mouthwatering. I found myself drawn to Warren (as I am with most tortured “I can’t love you” types). This book wasn’t marketed for romance, and Paige is mainly focused on getting out of the colony throughout the story (as she well should be). This of course did not at all deter me from savagely shipping this couple from the first time they meet. While I’d like this ship to sail off into the sunset, it’s a good thing smooth waters aren’t present  because this book is the first in a SEPTET! As of right now, only three are out, so there is still plenty of time for my romantic pairing of choice to develop!

 

A unique thing that Shannon has decided to do for this series is make each book a slightly different “genre”. In the author’s own words:

The Bone Season was a prison break; The Mime Order was a murder mystery; The Song Rising is, at its heart, a heist, while Book 4 is a touch more political, laced with subterfuge. Books 5-7 are going to be so different tonally, with such a different focus, that I’ve mentally classified them as a second ‘arc’ to the series, even though they follow the same core cast of characters. I wanted it to be this way so the reader never knows what to expect when they pick up a Bone Season book, and finds it nigh-on impossible to guess the outcome of the series as a whole.” (see the original post by Samantha Shannon HERE)

While this is certainly an amazing and novel idea that will keep readers on their toes, I dread finishing the books that are out because then I’ll have to WAIT for the next one.

I HIGHLY recommend this book to anyone who loves dystopian/fantasies. The world is so immersive, that once I got sucked in I couldn’t get out! I can’t wait to finish The Mime Order and find out what else this world has in store. If you’re interested in reading, keep scrolling down for a How To Read section!

emily

HOW TO READ: THE BONE SEASON

  • There is music interspersed throughout the book, and if you’re interested in reading, definitely have this playlist handy. Listening to the “soundtrack” really creates the mood and serves to further engross you in the story.

Gloomy Sunday – Billie Holiday

Danse Macabre (Jaxon’s Theme) – Camille Saint-Saëns

Did You Ever See a Dream Walking? – Bing Crosby

Mr. Sandman – The Chordettes

Molly Malone – Unknown

I Don’t Stand a Ghost of a Chance (With You) – Frank Sinatra

It’s a Sin to Tell a Lie – The Ink Spots

Komm, süßer Tod (Come, Sweet Death) – J. S. Bach

I’ll Be Home – The Flamingos

Fantaisie-Impromptu – Frédéric Chopin

Daisy Bell (A Bicycle Built for Two) – Harry Dacre

  • Make sure you’re ready to sit down and READ. I know I’ve said it above, but the world building requires full attention. Skimming a page can lead to not knowing what’s happening a few pages later!
  • Grab a hot cup of tea, curl up, and enjoy!
Advertisements

Ready Player One

9969571Ready Player One by Ernest Cline

Genre: Science Fiction

Published: August 16, 2011

Rating: 5/5

Goodreads                  Amazon

In the year 2044, reality is an ugly place. The only time teenage Wade Watts really feels alive is when he’s jacked into the virtual utopia known as the  OASIS. Wade’s devoted his life to studying the puzzles hidden within this world’s digital confines, puzzles that are based on their creator’s obsession with the pop culture of decades past and that promise massive power and fortune to whoever can unlock them. When Wade stumbles upon the first clue, he finds himself beset by players willing to kill to take this ultimate prize. The race is on, and if Wade’s going to survive, he’ll have to win—and confront the real world he’s always been so desperate to escape.

I was given this book during Big-Little week by my wonderful Little, and it took me a while afterward to finally pick it up. I cannot believe it took me so long! This book combined my love of digital stories with their paper brethren in a wonderful ride that brought into question what will happen to the world when computers become the main sensory experience.

Wade Watts proves to be the super hero he was named to be, representing the dream of gamers across the world; to become famous and rich by playing video games. He also represents a self-taught computer genius who is a programmer and tech guy in one. In short, I am incredibly jealous of his innate computer literacy, and now consider him one of my multitude of book boyfriends.

This isn’t just a story about a quest for money and fame, it is a wonderful exploration of how the world can change when you can look however you want. The ability to work and play all occurs in the same web for (nearly) free. A world completely digitized still has “castes” of a sort; only the wealthy can move freely and have the best equipment. This facet of the world brings to mind current issues such as net neutrality, as Wade battles the evil corporation hell bent on privatizing entry into this magical universe of binary.

Do you really know your friends if you’ve never met them face-to-face? In a world now full of social media, and sharing sites, it can be harder than ever to tell your real friends from those just hiding behind a screen. The evolution of Wade and his friendships with those online made me evaluate how I view online friendships (I really don’t have any friends as awesome as Ach).

The classics will always come back. I’ll admit a few of the 80’s references in this book went over my head (I’m a 90’s kid), but I found the nostalgia present throughout the book charming and interesting. After finishing, I did go searching out a few of the movies referenced to get a little more context, and I will likely reread again soon so I can experience the book with a bit more background.

In summary, Ready Player One is an action packed sci-fi thriller and is high on my list of favorite books ever. I absolutely love and felt connected to all the characters, and can’t wait to see them adapted on the big screen next year (please, Steven Spielberg, don’t mess them up). I highly recommend it to anyone who loves 80’s references, classic video games, and explorations of what is to come in all of our futures.

Check out my Etsy for a Ready Player One inspired bracelet!

Thank you all for reading!

emily

Through the Dark Review

25453426Through the Dark by Alexandra Bracken

Published: October 6, 2016 by Disney Hyperion

Genre: Dystopian/Science Fiction

Rating: 4.5/5

Don’t miss this breathtaking collection of stories set in the world of the New York Times best-selling Darkest Minds trilogy. Featuring ebook original novellas In Time and Sparks Rise, and a gripping, brand-new novella, Through the Dark is a must-have for fans of the Darkest Minds. This collection contains three novellas: In TimeSparks Rise, and Beyond the Night.

The Darkest Minds is one of my favorite series of all time, however, for whatever reason I did not read the collection of novellas from the series, Through the Dark, until recently. They were all a delightful addition to the series and I especially loved the ones with Sam. Instead of reviewing the book as a whole, I’ll go over each novella separately.

“In Time”

This is the perfect fill-in for what Zu was doing when she left the squad after The Darkest Minds. It was also cool seeing things from the eyes of a reluctant skip-tracer, highlighting that not everyone is this dystopian world is horrible. Some are just trying to survive whatever way they can.

If you were wondering about some Zu’s development, her experiences during this little novella really contributes to her change in view during In the Afterlight.

“Sparks Rise”

I always was wondering about what Sam experienced after Ruby left her, and her two novellas were really wonderful. A good love story against all odds is always amazing. At times, it did get a little graphic but I feel like it really made the torment that the children went through in these camps more present and real.

Lucas is a character which many people will see a shard of their childhood in, and was perfectly lovable. He overcame impossible odds in an attempt to save his family.

“Beyond the Night”

So glad I got to see the Squad after the end of the official story. How the world was treating the children after the collapse of the camps was an important part of this story, and a question that readers were left with. I’m glad that Bracken took on this difficult topic of children being treated as other because of outside circumstances.

This also provided closure for Sam’s unfinished story. Although I absolutely loved these last two, Beyond the Night was a little less engrossing to me, just because it kept flashing back to the Squad. While I absolutely loved them, some interactions between them did distract from Sam’s story.

This book did provide me with more closure for this series, and I do recommend it for any fan of the series.

Another shameless plug for my side business: if you like Darkest Minds check out my bookish bracelets on Etsy (link in the navigation bar).

I am also so excited for the movie that is coming out with Amandla Stenberg playing Ruby!

Thank you for reading!

Emily

Arcana Rising by Kresley Cole

25946891Arcana Rising by Kresley Cole

Series: Book#4 in the Arcana Chronicles

Genre: Fantasy/Dystopian

Published: August 15, 2016

Rating: 4.5/5

I’m not going to put a blurb on here because it includes spoilers from the last book in the series, and I don’t want to ruin it for whomever so chooses to read it in the future. HERE is a link on Goodreads to the first book in the series, Poison Princess.

This book did not disappoint me at all. I would go so far to say as it is tied for my favorite in the series next to Poison Princess. Evie struggles with a great loss in convincingly confused fashion, as she is still forced to choose between her two loves, one of them presumed dead. Evie’s struggle with accepting this, turning into a black hat trying to make the impossible happen by turning back time, seemed real to me. She kind of goes a little insane, which I feel is an acceptable response when you lose the man you initially chose.

I have always struggled in picking a side for this race to the Empress’ heart. While I have always loved Aric, I feel like his claims on Evie were always a bit creepy because it was based in the far past and not the present. This book managed to clear some of those creepy crawly feelings up and although I will always have a special place in my heart for Jack, I can see Evie with Aric long-term.

I really enjoyed some of the new characters that we saw, particularly Sol, who I grew to like from his prequel novella in the collection Day Zero. He is funny and cool, although I still find his motives and actions a bit confusing even a week or two after finishing the book originally.

One of the most interesting parts is the development of Matthew’s story separate from those of his friends. This part kind of ends a bit abruptly…actually the whole book does.

Mini rant: I absolutely love this author but WHY DOES SHE ALWAYS DO CLIFF HANGERS??!?!?!!? She really has you on the edge of your seat, especially after the last two books, which do not seem long enough at all. No seriously, the book is 280 pages which in a world of Maasian 700 page monstrosities IS NOT ENOUGH.   *rant over*

But while we are on the topic of endings, the ending left me reeling and was everything that my super trashy romance loving heart desired. However, I do believe that the paramedic guy may be Minor Arcana and kind of messing with everyone’s head. This is not a fact, just an opinion.

Thankfully, a Spring 2017 release date has been set for the next book in the series  which already has a title and a cover! This is definitely on my can’t-wait list, and I can’t wait to see what happens next in the series.

31453592

Thanks of reading! Feel free to share your thoughts!

Emily