As an orphan ward of the Sisterhood, eighteen-year-old Kalinda is destined for nothing more than a life of seclusion and prayer. Plagued by fevers, she’s an unlikely candidate for even a servant’s position, let alone a courtesan or wife. Her sole dream is to continue living in peace in the Sisterhood’s mountain temple.
But a visit from the tyrant Rajah Tarek disrupts Kalinda’s life. Within hours, she is ripped from the comfort of her home, set on a desert trek, and ordered to fight for her place among the rajah’s ninety-nine wives and numerous courtesans. Her only solace comes in the company of her guard, the stoic but kind Captain Deven Naik.
Faced with the danger of a tournament to the death—and her growing affection for Deven—Kalinda has only one hope for escape, and it lies in an arcane, forbidden power buried within her.
In Emily R. King’s thrilling fantasy debut, an orphan girl blossoms into a warrior, summoning courage and confidence in her fearless quest to upend tradition, overthrow an empire, and reclaim her life as her own.
Continue reading “Review for The Hundredth Queen by Emily R. King”
- My rating: 3 Stars
- Pages: 304 Hardcover
- Publisher: Ballantine Books
- Spoiler-free review
Survival is the name of the game as the line blurs between reality TV and reality itself in Alexandra Oliva’s fast-paced novel of suspense.
She wanted an adventure. She never imagined it would go this far.
It begins with a reality TV show. Twelve contestants are sent into the woods to face challenges that will test the limits of their endurance. While they are out there, something terrible happens—but how widespread is the destruction, and has it occurred naturally or is it human-made? Cut off from society, the contestants know nothing of it. When one of them—a young woman the show’s producers call Zoo—stumbles across the devastation, she can imagine only that it is part of the game.
Alone and disoriented, Zoo is heavy with doubt regarding the life—and husband—she left behind, but she refuses to quit. Staggering countless miles across unfamiliar territory, Zoo must summon all her survival skills—and learn new ones as she goes.
But as her emotional and physical reserves dwindle, she grasps that the real world might have been altered in terrifying ways—and her ability to parse the charade will be either her triumph or her undoing.
Sophisticated and provocative, The Last One is a novel that forces us to confront the role that media plays in our perception of what is real: how readily we cast our judgments, how easily we are manipulated.
Continue reading “The Last One by Alexandra Olivia”
- Review type: Spoiler-free
- My rating: 1/5 Stars
- Format: E-copy in exchange for an honest review
- Price: $13.95 USD, paperback (available for free on Kindle Unlimited)
- Pages: 336
- Publisher: Future House Publisher
Fifteen-year-old Ashira just received the worst coming-of-age prophecy imaginable.
After years dreaming of oceans, princes, and fairies, she expected to hear the words that would finally whisk her away from her ordinary desert village. Instead she hears, “you will live a life of no renown.”
Ready to choose her own fate, she discovers a djinni’s bottle and starts making wishes. When the djinni proves uncooperative and annoying, Ashira sets out to the great city of magicians to learn magic and free herself from an uneventful life as a potter’s daughter.
But there is another prophecy being whispered in the shadows. It is said that among the great magicians, there is a demon on the rise with the power to destroy the world. The djinni might be Ashira’s only chance to become someone important, or he just might be the very demon that triggered the dark prophecy.
With the world on the brink of destruction, can Ashira fight her fate and stop the forces that threaten to upset the balance of the universe?
Continue reading “The Stone Bearers by Jacque Stevens”
My Rating: 3.75/5 Stars
This book was a little different for me, in terms of it being an adult historical fiction rather than a young adult. That being said, I didn’t find the change of pace boring. While the plot was a little slow, I found it was still a very compelling read. If you are one for characterization and imagery, this is the book for you.