Monday, March 20, 2017

The Wingsnatchers: Carmer & Grit Book One

This is a review for The Wingsnatchers: Carmer and Grit Book One by Sarah Jean Horwitz
I gave this book ★ ★ ★ ★ ★ 5 stars, I loved it.

Felix Cassius Tiberius Carmer III is a magician's apprentice and aspiring inventor.  He travels with Antoine the Amazifier around a rural circuit but their show is not doing well.  They are one rotten tomato from going under!  A contest in Skemantis city could save their act and Skemantis just happens to be hosting an engineering exhibition that Carmer really wants to see as well.  The Magician and his apprentice pack up their box of tricks and head for the city.

Grettifrida is a fairy with one wing and a hatred of her name, call her Grit please!  Grit lives in Oldtown Arboretum in Skemantis.  She is an impossible being; the only fairy born with one wing.  Grit dreams of being outside the walls of the Arboretum and exploring the world.  She frequently sneaks outside the walls to explore the city.

Carmer and Grit meet by chance in the city and that one meeting will change both of their lives.  Carmer and the Amazifier are going to lose the magic contest their competition has a huge advantage.  Grit's people are being attacked and carried off by something in the night.  Can Carmer & Grit work together to solve both of their problems?

Carmer is a flawed child who tries hard.  He has trouble saying what he means, he feels like his mouth betrays him sometimes.  He has eloquent responses in mind but stutters out the exact opposite of what he wants to say.  He is not a great magician's apprentice, he messes up and makes mistakes. 

Grit is a sheltered child who wants to see more of the world.  Her mother wants to keep her safe and close but doesn't realize that she is stifling her daughter's growth.  Grit is headstrong and gets angry really easily. 

I adored this book.  I could barely put it down.  The story is fascinating and the characters are intriguing.  Carmer and Grit both have flaws and strengths.  They have disagreements and problems that they have to work through.  Neither one would be able to solve their problems alone. 

This book has a bit of a steampunk fantasy feel to it, automatons and fairies existing side by side.  If you like Howl's Moving Castle you will like this book.  I highly recommend this.  I will be over here in my little corner waiting for a sequel!

I received an advance copy free for review purposes.  This review is my personal opinion and is in no way influenced by the publisher, author or any third party.

Sunday, February 5, 2017

The Raven Boys

This is a review of The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater.
I gave this book ★ ★ ★ ★ ★ 5 stars, I loved it.

Blue is the daughter of a powerful psychic.  She has been told her whole life that if she kisses her true love he will die.  Blue is not a psychic, the only one in her entire family to not be a psychic.  Blue lives by two rules 1. Stay away from boys. 2. Stay away from Raven boys.  Her entire life changes the night she sees her first spirit.

I loved this book.  It is not uncommon for me to stay up reading a book until 2am.  It is uncommon for me to then wake up before 7am to finish the book!  The characters in this book are each so different and so vibrant.  They are fully formed and fluid.  There is change, there is growth.  The world has vast amounts of detail but it is given in a natural way.  It doesn't feel heavy, forced, or boring; it is also not tacked on as an afterthought.

I was absolutely captivated by this story.  Everything in it was interconnected in surprising ways.  The different narratives merged beautifully to create a story that feels real.  I am half tempted to go put on some hiking boots and search for ley-lines myself!  Before going to find any ley-lines though, I am going to go find the next book in this series!

I highly recommend this book.  I absolutely devoured it.  It went from a simple "oh the library has this available and I have heard good things about it" to "Holy crap!  I can't put this book down" within the first 5 minutes of the story.  If you enjoy stories about supernatural things you will enjoy this book!  If you are on the fence about the legitimacy of the supernatural this might be the book to make you a believer.