The Veil of Ashes (Princess Vigilante #2)

Author: S. Usher Evans

Publisher: Sun’s Golden Ray Publishing

Number of Pages:  257 pages

Genre: Young Adult Fantasy

Rating: 5 Stars

Blurb :

Blindsided by betrayal, Brynna has been licking her wounds away from the city she loves. But the call to duty soon becomes too much to bear, and Brynna embarks on a quest for friends and allies who’ll help her reclaim what was once hers. But vengeance comes with a heavy toll, one Brynna isn’t sure she’s willing to pay.

Synopsis :

After being killed, Bryanna recovers under Celia and stays away from her city out of guilt. But the good old friend Celia gives her the needed motivation, drops her right in front of the Forcadel City gates!! She crawls back to her city and realizes that things have turned worse than she expected! With the help of her allies she heads to Neimen. Neimen agrees to help under one condition. If Bryanna can get the Kulkans to help her, Neimen will send her the help she asked for. She goes to Kulka knowing that the king of Kulka hates her for breaking off her engagement with the Kulkan Prince. In Kulka she faces the expected hostility. The Kulkans price for their help was Neveri, the border city that lies between Forcadel and Kulka. She’d have found the task super easy if she never lied about the number of soldiers she had. Yet, with the help of Celia’s soldiers, few of her Foradelian supporters and Luard and his Neimen friends she achieves the impossible!! Here they go to win Forcadel!!

(I was provided with an e – ARC by the author in exchange for an honest review. All the opinions, thoughts and feelings expressed below are my own)

This book has a great amount of character developments. You see a different aspect of every single person you’ve already met in the book one. The new characters are very much interesting too.  The author has done a great job shaping each character.

Starting with Bryanna, who was hiding, regretting her own past and mistakes will change into an independent, strong woman. Her journey to Nimen and Kulka brings so much change into her character. Learning to deal with her fears, learning the life style of ordinary people in Nimen and Kulka, working with Luard and his friends have added a great lot of positivity into Bryanna’s vision. The way she faced her fears and the way she started behaving like a queen was incredible!

Felix finally, finally accepts the fact that he loves Bryanna! Yess!!! I was waiting for this to happen and yes!! He finally did confess it! Felix being vulnerable and taking risks to save his friends is another major character development I saw in this book. Felix wasn’t a person who would look for loopholes in law. But he did it for Bryanna.

Celia’s character becomes more and more interesting. I’m still curious to know what this woman has kept in store to surprise us! Ilara, being an adorable villain!!! I love this character to some extent. Her boldness, strength and diplomacy is pretty impressive.

I almost forgot Luard!! He was such a gentleman. Who would risk so much for his sister and his sister’s friend? His generosity and kindness was one of the biggest strength Bryanna had.

The author had showcased the weak side of certain characters as well. Especially during moments like, Felix giving up his protection to save his love and friendship and Bryanna regretting her past.

The setting was beautiful too. The cities Nimen and Kulka were beautifully described. The Nimen underground tunnels reminded me of dwarfs’ constructions from Lord of the Rings and the Inheritence Cycle.

Narrating the story using two characters points of view made it easier to understand what happens in both ends. While Bryanna was narrating the story from her point of view. We learnt what was happening in Forcadel through Felix.  

That end was compelling! That was the end I was expecting but never thought it would feel so good to read an ending like that!

Author Usher Evans knows how to get a sequel written!! A page turner. Unputdownable! Fast phased, action filled, thrilling, enthralling and phenomenal!! A five star read! This story gets better with each part!! With the story building and the amount of action that was involved, I can’t wait to know what happens next!!

If you’re looking for a fascinating and heart thumping read, this is the series you should get to yourself! This series will never disappoint you!

Until next time,

Much love,

Amna. xoxo.

        Purchase the book from – Amazon, Book Depository ,                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                   

Interview with Author Chaitanya Saini

I wasn’t much into reading self- help books until I received “The Perfect Drug” written by author Chaitanya Saini. I was lucky to get an opportunity to read Author Chaitanya Saini’s debut novel, “The Perfect Drug” and review it. It is indeed one of my favourite books I’ve read this year!

Since I adored the book so much, I wanted all of you to get to know him too!! He was generous to allocate time from his busy schedule to answer my questions for you!!

Let’s get started!

May I start with few basic questions?

  • Who is your favourite author? And what is your favourite book?

My favorite author is Oscar Wilde. And my favorite book is his only novel : The Picture of Dorian Gray.

  • What are your favourite genres?

Ummm. I don’t like limiting myself to a particular genre. I like books with deep human psycho-analysis. Another thing, I have strong dislike towards cliched romantic novels.

  • What/who inspired you to write?

Haha. Not one person for sure. My friends simply encouraged me to write further while my imagination was my guiding light that paved my way while at the same time demonstrating  that my perspective of viewing things was entirely unique .

  • What was your first work/book? Tell us a bit about your books.

My debut book is called The Perfect Drug though my first story is called The Urban Novel. They both belong to different genres but I was like challenging myself and creating a new vivid experience for the reader.

  • When did you realize that you wanted to be a writer?

Lol. Hard to pinpoint a date but in the final years of my engineering. It was moreover due to this realization that words aren’t merely collection of syllables but vibrations. This thought piqued my curiosity and I began exercising my linguistic elasticity.   

“The Perfect Drug”

  • What inspired you to write the story of Ananya and The Perfect Drug?  

Ananya as the name corresponds is a part of my personality. An aspect that is immensely ambitious , wishes to build a better world and is willing to any price for that.  With Ananya’s character, I have tried to describe my journey to self realization while interweaving with the common troubles faced by youth.

  • While the readers realize different truths about life through the book, was there any important message that you wanted to convey through TPD?

The ones who have read the book would realise that there is not one message but many truths that I have shed light upon but the most prominent ones are : Classification of Drugs into Narcotics and Psychoactives is important and secondly when the enemy within is defeated, the enemy outside cannot harm.

  • What was the most challenging part of writing TPD?

Haha. Good question. The most difficult part was writing the last chapter : eluding to solitude. I had figured his superpowers, his rise and descent before starting the novel but hadn’t figured how to make him emerge victorious ? It was only when I buried myself into my oceans of words that the ending came naturally to me.

  • Which character relates to you the most among the characters from TPD?

Ananya, of course.

  • The epilogue was all about Anushree. I feel like Anushree’s part in Ananya’s life isn’t over yet. Okay, my question is, will there be a sequel for “The Perfect Drug”?

Yes. Spolier , I intend to call it : The Decaying Drug.

As an author,

  • What are the challenges you had to face throughout your journey?

Not one but many. I have observed that whenever one utilizes his will power and tries to accomplish something. Resistance arrives in one form or another. Hence, it is our duty to give away anything that corrodes our mental peace.

  • How long on average does it take you to write a book?

Frankly, It too me 10 months to write TPD. But for those 10 months, I followed a strict schedule intended to arouse my creativity.

  • Do you hear from your readers much? What kind of things do they say?

Yes, I do. For instance, I am writing to one who is from Sri Lanka. It is quite breathtaking how a language crosses borders and cultures.

  • According to you, what is the most challenging part in publishing a novel?

I think there are four aspects to a novel. 1) Writing 2 ) Editing 3) Publishing 4) Advertising. And all of them are of equal importance because while writing the novel you cannot think that I shall promote the book in this way or that similarly where advertising you shouldn’t think that my book requires so much advertising perhaps it is not so good.

  • If you could give your younger writing self an advice, what would it be?

My only advice would be : write unorthodox, write unpredictable. Write something that surprises you first and reader alter.

  • What does literary success look like to you?

For me literary success means when your novel has gained worldwide recognition.

Thank you Chaitanya, for giving me an opportunity to host this interview! Reading from you has been very interesting! Looking forward to read more from you! I wish you achieve great success!!

Until next time,

Amna.

Buy “The Perfect Drug” through Amazon

Add to your TBR list on Goodreads

Read my review on “The Perfect Drug”

The Jaffna Public Library

38 years ago today…

One of the most violent examples of ethnic biblioclasm (deliberate destruction of books) of the 20th century, took place in the night of May 31st to June 1st in 1981. “The Burning of the Jaffna Public Library”, an important event in the Sri Lankan civil war which damaged over 97 000 books and manuscripts. At the time of destruction, The Jaffna Public Library was one of the biggest libraries in Asia.

The Jaffna Public library was built in 1933 facilitating the idea of K.M. Wellappa. This began as a private collection given the name “Jaffna Library Movement”. The infamous architect from Madras, S. Narasimhan laid out the plan for this incredible structure. Distinguished Indian Librarian S.R. Ranganathan worked as an advisor to make sure that the library was built according to the international standards. The building was handed over to the people in the year 1959 October 7th by then Jaffna Mayor, Alfred Duraiappah.

The massive building was inspired by Dravidian architecture, nested over 95,000 ancient Tamil palm leaves (olai), manuscripts, parchments and irreplaceable books, magazines and newspapers. Some texts that were kept in the library such as “Yalpanam Vaipavama” (A history of Jaffna) were of great importance, being the only copies of existence. Among the destroyed items, there were works and manuscripts of philosopher, artist and author Ananda Coomaraswamy.

On midnight May 31st, the invaluable library was set ablaze by state sponsored mobs and the burning continued for two continuous nights. The scholar, Reverend Father David died from shock after the destruction of the library which was very much close to his heart. His death shows the immeasurable loss the whole country suffered on that day by sacrificing such valuable knowledge to the flames.  

“We have lost an intellectual heritage. It was a vast ocean of Knowledge” – Karthikesu Sivathambi (Eminent Professor, University of Jaffna)

Almost 20 years later, the library was rebuilt. The government spent US$ 1 million and over 25 000 books were collected. With so many resistance, eventually the library was opened to the public. Now she stands carrying all the memories of suffering, as a phoenix rising from ashes.

Source : Wikipedia, Ceylon Today, Colombo Telegraph

Until next time,

Much love,

Amna. xoxo.

A Shifting of Stars (Of Stars #1)

Author: Kathy Kimbray

Publisher: Self published

Number of Pages: 

Genre: Young Adult Fantasy

Rating: 5 stars

Synopsis:

With the death of her mother, seventeen year old Meadow’s life changes. She’ll be arrested by the Prince for speaking against the King. Rescued by an unknown person she has to work at the King’s palace. There she meets Vogel, a boy who hates the king as much as she does. Together they find out that the Prince is a monstrous person who tortures the innocent. Escaping death, Meadow walks out of the Kingdom in search of her father with Vogel, Casper and her best friend Anai. There in those unknown lands, Magic and betrayal changes her life forever.

Blurb:

Seventeen-year-old Meadow Sircha watched her mother die from the wilting sickness. Tormented by the knowledge that the emperor failed to import the medicine that would have saved her, she speaks out at a gathering of villagers, inciting them to boycott his prized gladiator tournament.

But doing so comes at a steep cost.

Arrested as punishment for her impulsive tongue, Meadow finds herself caught up in the kind of danger she’s always tried to avoid. After a chance meeting with an enigmatic boy, she’s propelled on a perilous trek across the outer lands. But she soon unearths a staggering secret: one that will shift her world—and the kingdom—forever.

(I was provided with an e – ARC by the author in exchange for an honest review. All the opinions, thoughts and feelings expressed below are my own)

As usual let me start with the characters.

Meet Meadow, our protagonist. Another naïve, soft hearted girl turned into a strong woman. Being in an empire where the monarch has all the luxuries and the people were let to suffer, her mother becomes ill and she learns that there is a cure. Yet the ruler wastes all their resources in useless arena games than treating his people. Driven by the guilt, Meadow addresses a gathering and faces the consequences of it. Throughout her journey to escape from being arrested she experiences various challenges. She learns her own lessons in life from betrayal to love. One thing I loved about the character was her love for people. She feels the suffering of people. The hardships the people had to go through just to have one proper meal once in a while. She understands the pain of the people who lost theirs and their loved ones lives. That quality of her makes her special. Her bravery was another quality that impressed me. The way she complained the emperor about his own son! That was macho! Her persistence, she never gave up on her father. She was determined to rescue her father where she decided to trek the unknown lands with a stranger.

Vogel, our hero! At a point you think this character is important and then for a while you completely forget him until he sneaks in to the palace! I never expected Vogel to be the hero once Prince Malthe came in. May be I was expecting a “Cruel Prince” scenario. I’m glad it wasn’t. But, this love story led us into a different path. Strangers to lovers! Yes!! Vogel has all the qualities of a 100% perfect book boyfriend. Where he is, kind, loving, brave, honest and vigorous. Apart from all that his sacrifice to rescue his friends was the quality I loved in him. He chose to give up on his conditions in order to save the lives of his friends. The Victoreglia almost killed me with a heart attack! That scene was so intense.

Anai, the perfect friend. She was caring and understanding. Never gave up on her best friend. Meadow’s father was an inspiring character too. A person who uplifts another person. A person who stands for a fellow human being. Casper, I thought he was cute!! I never expected him to be a betrayer!!

The magic was suuper good! I’m curious, what else does the author has in stock? Anyways, what’s a fantasy without a bit of magic! The storyline was excellent with all the twists! It reminded me of Red Queen, Game of Thrones and The Cruel Prince. The episodic plot had few rising action scenes where the write had explored different personalities of the characters involved. The setting was beautiful. The geographical setting and the architecture gave the feel of medieval era.

It’s a crime if I didn’t talk about the cover! It was gorgeous!

That beginning was wow!! It picks the curiosity of the reader from the start. A page turner indeed! The end makes you crave for the next book already! The end does justice to the title of the book, “A Shifting of Stars”. The stars shifted for Meadow, Vogel and the whole Kingdom. I can’t wait to see how this story will develop.

Awarded this beauty with five stars and I recommend this to all the fantasy lovers!

Until next time,

Much love,

Amna. xoxo.

The Perfect Drug by Chaithanya Saini

Author: Chaithanya Saini

Publisher: Self Published

Number of Pages:  454 Pages

Genre: Self Help

Rating: 5 stars

Blurb:

Buddha meditated for six years, Shiva had his mountain, Could there be a drug that could induce enlightenment? A drug that could make you attain a heightened state of consciousness, gaining of a perspective that perforates through this veil of Maya, revealing the divine in you and others a well. Making you perceive that the problems of the world aren’t global warming, air pollution, overpopulation, it is this global demented state of consciousness, the demon of ignorance that has ingested this whole wide world.
Ananya synthesizes this divine drink with immense difficulty and tends it with great care but with the attainment of power brings its use and abuse. In an attempt to beat the demon outside, he mutes all the voices contrary to his ambition including his much revered intuition. He fails miserably but his torture endures. Does his indulgence keeps Ananya entangled in the web of illusion or he emerges a true conscious being devoid of all attachments?
He has to discover the answer for himself. (Goodreads)

Synopsis:

Ananya, a student who has a great passionate towards Chemistry gets enrolled in a well known university in Delhi. Gets heartbroken by a girl whom he really loved. While recovering he finds a way to formulate ‘the perfect drug’ which has the ability to improve his state of mind. He tries to change the world through this ability and gain power. He views the world through a different outlook after the intake of ‘the perfect drug’. Will Ananya be able to find the happiness he lost after Anushree left him? Will he succeed in changing the world and gaining power.

(I was provided with an e – ARC by the author in exchange for an honest review. All the opinions, thoughts and feelings expressed below are my own)

To start with the characters, this book contains a number of characters. Ananya, the protagonist is an ambitious, hard working and a flamboyant person. His passion for chemistry makes him more unique and special. His attachment towards his parents, sisters and his friends is another beautiful attribute I noticed in this character.

Ananya’s father was another character I loved in this book. A kind, understanding and a supportive person. The way he uplifted the morale of Ananya when he was feeling low was so encouraging. Then comes his aunt, with her super good food! Those parts in the book were the best because it was about food!! I was eagerly waiting till Ananya reaches his aunt’s place. The entry of Anushree was the turning point of the story for me. Her entry changed the whole story including Ananya. The character was unmistakably beautiful and pure. His friends, Akshay and Kanika are type of friends you’d wish to have in your life. Determined and supportive.

Moving on, this book was more than a self- help book for me. I was never a fan of self – help books. But the way author has narrated this story of Ananya was captivating. It took me good two weeks to read the book completely because I needed time and patience to digest certain facts in the book. I loved the way the author had played with words. The author’s research in chemistry was another fascinating fact I encountered in this book. I also found this book very informative, where I started researching about the human energy fields.

The author had used certain attributes of Ananya, to explain different aspects of life. I really loved the fact that Ananya and his uncle Prakash work hard in order to pursue the highest level in what they do. He beautifully explains that if a person wishes to reach higher, he has to work for it than sit and dream about it. The following are my favourite quotes that I actually noted that can be applied in our own lives.

“Sometimes we have to witness chaos in order to measure the price of peace”.

“Guddu, if you start something, then see it to the end or don’t start at all.”

” ‘Do you know who wrote Ramayana?’ ‘Valmiki’ The hermit said, ‘Yes. But do you know that he was dacoit before, which obviously means that he killed on purpose?’ ‘Do you think that he had not forgiven himself, he would have penned the greatest epic of Hinduism without internalizing the divinity of the characters?’ He paused and added, ‘Devotion is a very powerful tool.’ ‘And so is introspection,’ Ananya countered. ”

The use of religious quoting as well as divine characters was another noticeable factor.

“Allah doesn’t burden a soul more than it can afford . Koran verse two, two hundred eighty – six”

Another fact I really appreciate about this book is that the author hasn’t fantasized love as in some books or movies. The pain, the infatuation. the desire and the need has been beautifully described. The reality of love and the healing has been stunningly described.

“No girl would like to go out with a guy for whom she has to jump in a fire to prove her faith. Besides, I find it kind of Romantic that a king lost his kingdom, and later his life, in order to affirm his worth and love.”

Since meeting Anushree till she leaves, his poems were one thing I was eager to read. It was a bit cheesy yet extraordinarily beautiful. Following are few parts I loved in this book.

“When you push a strand or two behind the ear, It makes all the worldly mysteries disappear.”

“There are times when I look at you, And I wish to shatter every constraint to be with you.”

I actually can relate his writing for Paulo Coelho’s. Spiritually enlightens people and motivates the readers at the same time.

That end, was beautiful. I was upset that we didn’t get an opportunity to know what’s next or Ananya’s plight. The epilogue, Anushree’s diary entries were heartbreaking.

Would I recommend “The Perfect Drug’? That’s a big yes! Specially the fans of Coelho and the readers who love reading self help books, this is a must read! I enjoyed this book and it was indeed an enlightening read. Don’t forget to add this gem to your TBR pile!

Until next time,

With much love,

Amna 

xoxo.

Reading Slump

A reader’s worst nightmare!

Being bookworms we’ve all faced this problem. It’s the mood where you are not being able to pick up a book and read. No matter how hard you try, you… CAN’T READ.  You may get the best book in the world or may try reading your favourite book. Nothing’s going to help you and you won’t read! No book will be good enough for you. All you could is Netflix, YouTube and Instagram!!

Such reading slumps can go on for days, weeks or even months! No wonder we dread reading slumps.

But, it’s okay. Having a busy and a tiring schedule and all your books wanting your attention, your brain desires a break once in a while.

Do you worry about it?

Worrying about the reading slump will only extend your negative thoughts towards reading. Instead you can engage in some activity that will benefit the reader inside you. Using this time to focus on yourself, your surrounding and the people around you might help you feel better. Reminding yourself how much and why you love reading will definitely help you focus on bettering your reading and your reading slump will disappear in no time.

Let’s discuss about few tricks that we can follow to get rid of this ‘Reading slump’.

1. Re- read your all-time favourite

I’d always run back to Harry Potter during a reading slump. Re-living in the magical world of Harry Potter makes me feel better than anything else. So yeah! That’s the first option. Read your all-time favourite, sit back and relax!

2. Read a short book

Pick a short book, sit down and finish reading it. It won’t take much time and you wouldn’t be ranting about not being able to read. Tadaaa!!

3. Read one book at a time.

Well, I have the habit of skipping from one book to another whenever I feel bored. I had to reduce it for two books at a time (still too much yeah?) since it made the whole process tougher. And if you really don’t find the book you’re reading interesting, let go. Read another book. No one’s going to kill you for doing it!

4. Change the genre preference.

I’m a fantasy freak. I really love reading books filled with magic, imagination and unrealistic things! (For which I get advised a bit too much 😉 Can’t help folks! ) But I do read other books. Historical fictions, contemporaries, thrillers and few self-help books then and there. This actually gives me a break from the usual things I read and helps me to continue reading without getting bored.

5. Spend time in a bookstore.

Ahh! This is the best therapy! I do visit the bookstore every time I’m in town! (Even if I don’t by any books) Sit on the floor, flip through few books, read few poems and relax. Bookstores never disappoint me! This helps me to relax my mind.

6. Take a break from your phone.

Spending too much tie online always leads you to reading slumps. The more time you spend online, the less time you spend on reading. You can sit down for a quick Instagram session and suddenly five hours have passed! Set aside some internet time and spend time to read few pages a day. Turn off your phone or leave it in another room, sit, relax and spend some quality times with a book.

7. Wait. Wait. Wait.

Your brain needs a break! So instead of pushing yourself to read sit back and relax. Take a break from reading. Forcing yourself to read wouldn’t help.

These are the things I do when I go through a reading slump. Is there anything different and creative you have tried? Do comment about your experiences going through a reading slump!

Beat the Backlist TBR 2019

Hey Hey Hey!!!

Decided to join the Beat the Backlist Reading Challenge 2019 since I have too many unread books in my list and I keep on getting new books to read as well. This challenge is hosted to help you and me to complete our ever growing TBR list! Here comes my TBR for the “Beat the Backlist TBR 2019

  1. Forty Rules of Love by Elif Shafak
  2. King’s Cage by Victoria Aveyard
  3. Me Before You by Jojo Moyes
  4. Me After You by Jojo Moyes
  5. Origin by Dan Brown
  6. The Lost Symbol by Dan Brown
  7. The Spy by Paulo Coelho
  8. City of Bones by Cassandra Claire
  9. City of Ashes by Cassandra Claire
  10. City of Glass by Cassandra Claire
  11. The Fates Divide by Veronica Roth
  12. Like the Flowing River by Paulo Coelho
  13. Grit by Angela Duckworth
  14. Revival by Stephen King
  15. Eldest by Christopher Paolini

These are the books I badly want to read this year which have been waiting in my TBR list for long! Hope I’ll be able to finish reading them!!

Do you have a large TBR pile too??? The best way to overthrow them is to join a reading challenge!

Until next time,

With much love,

Amna xoxo

Wrap Up 2018

Hello Bookworms!

2018 had been a very great reading year for me. Even though I struggled a bit to reach my “Goodreads Reading Goal”, finally I was able to read 45 books!!! 45 yass!!!! Without bragging, let me tell you what I could I read last year.

  1. Linger by Maggie Stiefvater
  2. Forever by Maggie Stiefvater
  3. Revival (Demon Spring #2) by S. Usher Evans
  4. Redemption (Demon Spring #3) by S. Usher Evans
  5. Catching Epics Secrets of the Tally #2) by Halie Fewkes
  6. Flawed (Flawed #1) by Cecelia Ahern
  7. Carve the Mark (Carve the Mark #1) by Veronika Roth
  8. Some Kind of Happiness by Claire Legrand
  9. Glass Sword (Red Queen #2) by Victoria Aveyard
  10. Lyrebird by Cecelia Ahern
  11. The Accidental Afterlife of Thomas Marseden by Emma Trevayne
  12. The Cruel Prince by Holly Black
  13. Over Raging Tides (Lady Pirates #1) by Jennifer Ellision
  14. Miss Never Pleased by Ayesha Marfani
  15. I am Full Truth, I am Half Truth, I am All Lie by Ayesha Marfani
  16. Chains of Fear by Neymat Raboobe
  17. The Last of the Firedrakes (Avalonia Chronicles #1) by Farah Oomerbhoy
  18. Steve Job’s Life by Design (Lessons from his last lecture) by Geaorge Beahm
  19. The Lightning Thief by Rick Riordan (Percy Jackson and the Olympians #1)
  20. The Sea of Monsters by Rick Riordan (Percy Jackson and the Olympians #2)
  21. The Rise of the Dawnstar (Avalonia Chronicles #2) by Farah Oomerbhoy
  22. The Titans Curse by Rick Riordan (Percy Jackson and the Olympians #3)
  23. UnEnchanted by Chanda Hahn
  24. Veronika Decides to Die by Paulo Coelho
  25. The Girl You Left Behind by Jojo Moyes
  26. The Battle of the Labyrinth by Rick Riordan (Percy Jackson and the Olympians #4)
  27. The Last Olympian by Rick Riordan (Percy Jackson and the Olympians #5)
  28. Divergent (Divergent #1) by Veronica Roth
  29. Perfect (Flawed #2) by Cecelia Ahern
  30. Insurgent (Divergent #2) by Veronica Roth
  31. The Lost Hero (The Heroes of Olympus #1) by Rick Riordan
  32. The Big Crowned Princess by Ayesha Marfani
  33. Allegiant (Divergent #2) by Veronica Roth
  34. The Son of Neptune (The Heroes of Olympus #2) by Rick Riordan
  35. The Maze Runner (The Maze Runner #1) by James Dashner
  36. Four (Divergent #0.1 – #0.4) by Veronica Roth
  37. The Moonstone (Enchantment #1) by Evelyn Contant
  38. Atlantis (Enchantment #2) by Evelyn Contant
  39. The Emerald Tablet (Enchantment #3) by Evelyn Contant
  40. The Scorch Trials (The Maze Runner #2) by James Dashner
  41. The Death Cure (The Maze Runner #3) by James Dashner
  42. The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood
  43. Eragon by Christopher Paulini
  44. To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before by Jenny Han
  45. The City of Veils by S. Usher Evans

These are the books I read last year and I’m really grateful for all the authors who had sent me arcs to review. The year had been a great year and yes! I’ve already set my reading goal for the year 2019!!! My plan is to read 50 books this year!!!!! Wish me luck guyss!!!

Until next time,

with much love,

Amna xoxo.

The City of Veils (Princess Vigilante #1)

img

Author: Usher Evans

Publisher: by Sun’s Golden Ray Publishing

Number of Pages:  374 Pages

Genre: Fantasy/Young Adult Fiction

Rating: 5 stars

Blurb:

For the past three years, Brynna has been patrolling the streets of Forcadel as a masked vigilante, protecting the innocent and beating up bad guys. Her current target is Lord Beswick, a slumlord businessman who keeps the townsfolk in a vicious poverty cycle. But one fateful evening, she’s captured by Felix, the captain of the king’s guard, and told a shocking truth: her father and brother are dead, and she needs to hang up her mask and become queen.

Before long, she negotiates a deal with Felix: attend to her royal duties during the day and continue her vigilante mission to take out Lord Beswick at night—at least until her coronation. But the politics of Forcadel are as volatile as the streets, and Brynna isn’t sure whom she can trust in the castle. With two royals dead in less than a month, she must use all her wits to make sure she isn’t the third.

Synopsis:

Brynna, leaves the castle as a kid avoiding an alliance fixed with a prince and fulfills her responsibilities to her country as a masked vigilante, The Veil. Working at a butchery during day and continuing her vigilante activities during night, Brynna will be captured by the captain of the King’s guard, Felix. Learning that her father and her brother had been murdered, she prepares herself to be crowned as the Queen of Forcadel. While she tries to reduce crimes in her kingdom by capturing the business lord Beswick, she’ll have to face an unexpected and unfortunate incident which puts her life at stake.

(I was provided with an e – ARC by the author in exchange for an honest review. All the opinions, thoughts and feelings expressed below are my own)

Starting with the characters, Brynn is a different product of the author. Been read Evan’s books and being a fan of her writing, I always noticed that the main characters of her books always are very responsible ones. Here, our princess is the opposite of that.  I loved the character Brynna. Strong, ambitious and patriotic. I really loved the way she was yearning for freedom. Her will power is another aspect that impressed me throughout the story. She was dedicated and obliged to protect her kingdom and the people. Though she wasn’t willing to take responsibility at the beginning, her character growth was exemplary.

Felix, the Captain of the King’s Guard. Felix being over protective and loving was a beautiful thing. For me, Felix being around Brynna was a bit annoying at the beginning but when they started realizing their thoughts towards each other the story became more interesting. I was pretty upset when Felix decided to leave her. The character Felix added more beauty to the story as it entwined.

Bossy Katherine, Brynna’s Sister in law was such a strong character. I loved the woman for being strong and tolerant. Who can be in such a good mental condition when she’s lost her husband/best friend and being accused as a murderer? I felt as if she and Brynna together portray two facades of a woman. When Brynn plays the role of a mischievous, freedom loving woman, Katherine takes her responsibilities pretty seriously.

Out of all the minor characters from the story, I loved the character of Celia. Though she’s been introduced as a woman who engages in crime, I really loved this woman for playing her game fair and wise. I really do expect Celia to play an important role in the upcoming instalments.

The first instalment of the Princess Vigilante series is extraordinary! I really loved the read! I think it was the best way to finish the year 2018 since it was my last read of 2018. Evans really knows to keep things interesting. I’ve always loved her writing and this is an original fantasy with a touch of Robin Hood. Politics, Romance, sisterhood and Friendship were mainly discussed themes throughout the story.

The city of Forcadel, the setting was absolutely beautiful. I loved the way Evans had described the city. 

The end!!! Holy Guacamole! I never expected this to happen! It was a great shock to me! It wasn’t even predictable. The element of surprise had been used really well. My eyes popped out my head I’d say!

The book was so good, I can’t wait to read the next installment. The more I talk about it I’m tempted to tell you what happens there but NO! Read it for yourself! It’s real Fun!! An epic fantasy it is!

Until next time,

With much love,

Amna xoxo

Wrap Up – October 2018

Hello world!!

I was missing in action for a long time. Yes, life and reality struck me! Last month was a busy month yet I managed to read two books. So this post is going to be a very short and quick one. plus, I’ll be adding a review for one of the books I read last month.

Books read in October: 

The Death Cure by James Dashner  – 4 stars

97819094894242

The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood

9780525435006

I thought I’ll leave a ‘mini – review’ about the book, “The Handmaid’s Tale” below. This book had been a hot topic recently. So I thought I’d read this book too.

For a person who reads fantasies, this dystopia was a bit disturbing.  The story talks about the nightmare of every single woman on earth. This book describes the importance of women and respecting feminism.

I loved this book. I hated it. I stopped reading it  many times because I found it very frustrating.

Overall the book points out certain issues a female has to face during her life time.

My rating : 4 stars

October Book Haul:

Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets. (This,I received as a gift for the teacher’s day!)

Here ends my October wrap up!

Until next time,

With love,

Amna xoxo