book tag

Mid-Year Book Freak Out Tag 2021

I say this every year but it’s still true, this is one of my most favourite book tags to do and I look forward to doing it every year. I love how there are so many different prompts that really make you reflect on your reading at the halfway point through the year. A lot of the books I picked could’ve fit multiple answers but I decided to not choose the same book twice.

QUESTIONS:

1) Best book you’ve read so far in 2021

raybeaer

Raybearer by Jordan Ifueko – Raybearer is such a fantastic book, I loved the writing and I think the author is a great storyteller. I loved everything about this book from the characters and the plot to the amazing writing and themes of the story and can’t wait to read the next one.

2) Best sequel you’ve read so far in 2021

akofaf

A Kingdom of Flesh and Fire (Blood and Ash #2) by Jennifer L. Armentrout – I loved this book more than the first and think it’s a great sequel. I loved the development of the romance and loved the different character dynamics between some of the characters in this book.

3) New release you haven’t read yet, but want to

monstrous desing

Monstrous Design (Battalion of the Dead #2) by Kat Dunn – I loved the first book of this series and can’t wait to dive right into this book and see what these characters get up to next.

4) Most anticipated release for the second half of the year

redemptor

Redemptor (Raybearer #2) by Jordan Ifueko – I’ve already talked about my love for Raybearer so of course Redemptor is my most anticipated releases of the second half of the year.

5) Biggest disappointment

aart

An Absolutely Remarkable Thing by Hank Green – I’d heard a lot of amazing things about this book before I read it but I was disappointed by it, I really disliked the main character.

6) Biggest surprise

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Rejected (Shadow Beast Shifters #1) by Jaymin Eve – I was really surprised about how much I enjoyed this book and this series. It took me a while to get into the book at the beginning but once it got going I was really into it. I loved when Shadow was introduced and I loved reading the interactions between him and Mera.

7) Favourite new author (Debut or new to you)

sorcery of thorns

Sorcery of Thorns by Margaret Rogerson – This is my first Margaret Rogerson book and I loved it. I really liked the writing of it and can’t wait to read other books by this author.

8) Newest fictional crush

I don’t really get many fictional crushes and I can’t remember any from this year.

9) Newest favourite character

a song of wraiths and ruin

Malik from A Song of Wraiths and Ruin by Roseanne A. Brown. I loved how close of a bond Malik has with his sisters and his struggles with anxiety really make him such a relatable character. I loved how his character developed over the course of the book.

10) Book that made you cry

acosf

A Court of Silver Flames (ACOTAR #4) by Sarah J Maas – ACOSF is a very emotional book as Nesta goes on a self reflective journey and tries to overcome her past trauma. I loved this book and as always SJMs writing is always heart wrenching.

11) Book that made you happy

thitcs

The House in the Cerulean Sea by T.J. Klune – This is such a uniquely whimsical book that I think is perfect for all ages, it made me so happy to read and I loved the deep themes of it.

12) Most beautiful book you’ve bought so far this year (or received)

malibu rising

Malibu Rising by Taylor Jenkins Reid.

13) What books do you need to read by the end of the year?

the midnight lie skyhunter smoke bitten criers war

The Midnight Lie by Marie Rutkoski, Skyhunter by Marie Lu, Smoke Bitten (Mercy Thompson #12) by Patricia Briggs and Crier’s War by Nina Varela.

Have you read any of these books? What are some of your answers to these questions?

wrap up

January Wrap Up 2021

What I Read In January:

jan wrap up 2021 pic1

Jade War (The Green Bone Saga #2) by Fonda Lee – 3 STARS

I liked Jade War but I did like Jade City more. I felt like the plot meandered a bit and you could tell this was a second book in a series and that more exciting things were not going to happen in this book but in the next.

Touched by Fire (Demons of New Chicago #1) by Kel Carpenter- 3 STARS
Haunted by Shadows (Demons of New Chicago #2) by Kel Carpenter – 3 STARS

This is an urban fantasy series and I thought they were okay reads. I liked how action packed the plot was and I liked the rocky friendship that Piper and Nathalie have.

A Kingdom of Flesh and Fire (Blood and Ash #2) by Jennifer L. Armentrout – 5 STARS

I loved A Kingdom of Flesh and Fire, I loved the focus of the relationship between the main characters and I really love their interactions with each other. I did a full review of this book which you can find here. I’m so excited for the next book in this series.

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Spy X Family Volume 1 by Tatsuya Endo – 3 STARS

I thought this was an okay read. It is such an interesting concept but I felt a little indifferent to the overall story and characters.

Raybearer (Raybearer #1) by Jordan Ifueko – 5 STARS

Raybearer is such a wonderfully written YA fantasy, I loved how the author described the world and characters of it. Everything, from the history and mythology of the world to the characters and their back stories were written in such an intriguing way that really captured my interest. I’ll be posting my full review of it soon.

The Unraveling of Cassidy Holmes by Elissa R. Sloan – 3 STARS

I really liked the premise of this book, it’s about an early 2000s girl group as they look back on the height of their fame and why they broke up and why one of their former members is dead in the present timeline. This book was filled with drama and it focuses on hard topics but I didn’t feel as emotionally invested as I expected to be. I didn’t feel a connection between any of the characters and I wish it had focused more on the topics like depression and I wish we got to see more of Cassidy’s life after Gloss.

Blog Posts I Did In January:

My Favourite Books of 2020

The Anti-TBR Tag

Blood and Ash (Blood and Ash #1) by Jennifer L. Armentrout Book Review

A Kingdom of Flesh and Fire (Blood and Ash #2) by Jennifer L. Armentrout Book Review

New-To-Me Authors I Read In 2020

Books I Want To Reread in 2021

My Most Anticipated Book Releases for January, February and March 2021

Books I Meant To Read In 2020 But Didn’t Get To

Backlist Books I Want To Read In 2021

My January Bookstagram Pictures (kylaslibrary):

jan wrap up 2021 insta pic

What books did you read in January? Have you read any of the books I’ve mentioned?

book review

Book Review: A Kingdom of Flesh and Fire (Blood and Ash #2) by Jennifer L. Armentrout

akofafBook: A Kingdom of Flesh and Fire
Series: From Blood and Ash #2
Author: Jennifer L. Armentrout
Genre: Adult/New Adult fantasy romance

A Betrayal…

Everything Poppy has ever believed in is a lie, including the man she was falling in love with. Thrust among those who see her as a symbol of a monstrous kingdom, she barely knows who she is without the veil of the Maiden. But what she does know is that nothing is as dangerous to her as him. The Dark One. The Prince of Atlantia. He wants her to fight him, and that’s one order she’s more than happy to obey. He may have taken her, but he will never have her.

A Choice…

Casteel Da’Neer is known by many names and many faces. His lies are as seductive as his touch. His truths as sensual as his bite. Poppy knows better than to trust him. He needs her alive, healthy, and whole to achieve his goals. But he’s the only way for her to get what she wants—to find her brother Ian and see for herself if he has become a soulless Ascended. Working with Casteel instead of against him presents its own risks. He still tempts her with every breath, offering up all she’s ever wanted. Casteel has plans for her. Ones that could expose her to unimaginable pleasure and unfathomable pain. Plans that will force her to look beyond everything she thought she knew about herself—about him. Plans that could bind their lives together in unexpected ways that neither kingdom is prepared for. And she’s far too reckless, too hungry, to resist the temptation.

A Secret…

But unrest has grown in Atlantia as they await the return of their Prince. Whispers of war have become stronger, and Poppy is at the very heart of it all. The King wants to use her to send a message. The Descenters want her dead. The wolven are growing more unpredictable. And as her abilities to feel pain and emotion begin to grow and strengthen, the Atlantians start to fear her. Dark secrets are at play, ones steeped in the blood-drenched sins of two kingdoms that would do anything to keep the truth hidden. But when the earth begins to shake, and the skies start to bleed, it may already be too late.

My Rating: 5 STARS

My Review:

I absolutely loved A Kingdom of Flesh and Fire and I’m slightly surprised at that because although I enjoyed From Blood and Ash I did find it slow and predictable but A Kingdom of Flesh and Fire was definitely not that.

After the ending of From Blood and Ash and the unveiling of who Hawke really was I felt so aggrieved for Poppy and felt the same way she did towards Hawke. It was interesting to go into A Kingdom of Flesh and Fire disliking the male lead but also liking him at the same time. And from the very beginning of this book I loved the dynamics of the relationship between Poppy and Casteel.

The push and pull of their relationship in A Kingdom of Flesh and Fire was so compelling to read. This book was very much focused on the relationship between Poppy and Casteel and the over arcing plot kind of took a back seat but was still moving along just a bit more slowly. And I was really glad of this because after the ending of the first book I felt like it did the series and characters more justice to have them come to terms with each other and explore their feelings and grievances towards each other before other things happened.

I loved the romance and how it grew more in A Kingdom of Flesh and Fire. The banter between Poppy and Casteel was so fun to read and I liked how they reacted to each other. I liked Poppy in the first book and I liked her even more in this one because we really see her come into her own and make her own decisions. I also loved seeing more of her abilities as they grew and developed. I liked finding out more about Casteel’s back story.

The first book focused on the Ascended and I liked how A Kingdom of Flesh and Fire focused on the Atlantians and getting to see their side of the story. The group dynamics between Casteel’s people and Poppy were intriguing, how mistrustful they are of one another in the beginning. The way the wolven bonds were described was very unique and I liked finding out more about Casteel’s and Kieran’s bond. I liked seeing more of Kieran and the banter between him and Poppy.

Even though the romance is the centre of this book I did think the plot was still captivating and I didn’t find this book as slow as the first. I think the reason for that it because I loved reading about Poppy and Casteel’s romance so much.

Overall I loved this book and now know why it has such a high rating on Goodreads. I love how the romance is the centre of A Kingdom of Flesh and Fire, I love the relationship between Poppy and Casteel and I liked all the character dynamics of the people around them. After the ending of this book I am in desperate need for the next book and can’t wait to see where the story goes.

tbr

My Winter 2020 TBR

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly feature hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl. This week’s topic is: Books On My Winter 2020 TBR. I really enjoy doing seasonal tbrs even though sometimes I don’t stick to them. I recently did a post talking about the winter book releases I’m most excited for so I didn’t included any of those in this list but I do still plan on reading those too.

winter 2020 tbr pic1
If I Had Your Face by Frances Cha
Unconquerable Sun (The Sun Chronicles #1) by Kate Elliott
A Kingdom of Flesh and Fire (Blood and Ash #2) by Jennifer L. Armentrout

winter 2020 tbr pic2

Jade War (The Green Bone Saga #2) by Fonda Lee
Protecting Her Mate (The Nightstar Shifters #2) by Ariel Marie
Raybearer by Jordan Ifueko

What books are on your winter tbr?