June Wrap-Up

Well, June has been tough on me. I’ve been in the biggest slump this month, not just with reading but with blog posts, shooting content, the whole shebang. It’s partly down to working a lot of overtime this month but I’ve also had a complete lack of motivation.

Thanks to my little slump, I only read 4 books this month but thankfully, they were all really great reads! And they were also all focused on magic and fae, which obviously, is a big bonus.

Wicked Like A Wildflower (Hibiscus Daughter #1) 
Author - Lana Popovic
Publishing - July 24th 2018 by Katherine Tegen Books
Genre - Young Adult, Fantasy
Format - Paperback
Pages - 432
Rating - ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

All the women in Iris and Malina’s family have the unique magical ability or “gleam” to manipulate beauty. Iris sees flowers as fractals and turns her kaleidoscope visions into glasswork, while Malina interprets moods as music. But their mother has strict rules to keep their gifts a secret, even in their secluded seaside town. Iris and Malina are not allowed to share their magic with anyone, and above all, they are forbidden from falling in love.

But when their mother is mysteriously attacked, the sisters will have to unearth the truth behind the quiet lives their mother has built for them. They will discover a wicked curse that haunts their family line—but will they find that the very magic that bonds them together is destined to tear them apart forever?

This book is more than just a pretty cover (but seriously, isn’t the cover gorgeous?). One of my favourite things about Wicked Like A Wildfire is the writing style. Lana Popovic’s writing is so beautiful and descriptive that you feel completely immersed in the story. I have only criticism… I feel like Popovic tends to focus more on writing descriptions rather than plot, and the long, descriptive paragraphs can sometimes be a bit overwhelming.

I really liked Iris’s character, how she was hard-edged and strong but was also soft and vulnerable at times. I also really liked the dynamic between the twins and how their polar opposite personalities played off each other. 

Despite the plot being a bit slow, the book is very intense towards the end. There are so many twists, you’ll never guess how the story will play out, not to mention the ending, which was a huge cliffhanger and a complete shock! If you like really unique magic, mystery and badass witches, then this book will be right up your street! 

Read my full review here.

Empire of Storms (Throne of Glass #5)
Author – Sarah J. Maas
Publishing – September 6th 2016 by Bloomsbury YA
Genre – Young Adult, Fantasy, Romance
Format – Paperback
Pages – 689
Rating – ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

The long path to the throne has only just begun for Aelin Galathynius as war looms on the horizon. Loyalties have been broken and bought, friends have been lost and gained, and those who possess magic find themselves at odds with those who don’t.

With her heart sworn to the warrior-prince by her side, and her fealty pledged to the people she is determined to save, Aelin will delve into the depths of her power to protect those she loves. But as monsters emerge from the horrors of the past, and dark forces become poised to claim her world, the only chance for salvation will lie in a desperate quest that may mark the end of everything Aelin holds dear.

What… was this book? Is Sarah J.Maas trying to hurt me? This book was so tense. The plot is absolutely jam-packed it was honestly a little bit overwhelming at times. It didn’t help that this book is also very thick, it’s almost 700 pages.

If you read my posts or follow me on Instagram, you will probably know how much I love Aelin and Rowan, but I have to talk about a character who I have come to love after reading Empire of Storms. Manon Blackbeak. Her character development has been incredible and she is so strong and confident. I also love her little romance with a certain character (who I won’t name). On the subject of romance, there is a lot of it in this book, and I will warn you, some scenes are rather graphic

An Enchantment Of Ravens 
Author - Margaret Rogerson
Publishing - September 26th 2017 by Margaret K. McElderry Books
Genre - Young Adult, Fantasy, Romance
Format - Paperback
Pages - 300
Rating - ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

Isobel is a prodigy portrait artist with a dangerous set of clients: the sinister fair folk, but when she receives her first royal patron—Rook, the autumn prince—she makes a terrible mistake. She paints mortal sorrow in his eyes—a weakness that could cost him his life.

Furious and devastated, Rook spirits her away to the autumnlands to stand trial for her crime. Waylaid by the Wild Hunt’s ghostly hounds, the tainted influence of the Alder King, and hideous monsters risen from barrow mounds, Isobel and Rook depend on one another for survival. Their alliance blossoms into trust, then love—and that love violates the fair folks’ ruthless laws. Now both of their lives are forfeit unless Isobel can use her skill as an artist to fight the fairy courts. 

An Enchantment of Ravens was such a delightful book. It’s such a wholesome, cosy read that just leaves you feeling warm and fuzzy inside. I loved so many different things about this book I don’t even know where to start! The characters were great, especially Isobel, who is wonderfully innocent honest, but also strong and fierce. I adored Rook straight from the beginning, he’s cunning and sly like most Fair Folk, but he also has some really soft, squishy qualities and I just absolutely love him. The side characters were also really interesting and added a lot to the story. 

An Enchantment of Ravens was fun to read and fast-paced, and I really enjoyed reading a standalone book. I only have one complaint, I wanted more… 300 pages just weren’t enough! I feel there was a lot of things left out, that could have been explained if the book was just a bit longer, but that’s my only negative comment. 

I really cannot explain just how much I enjoyed this book. I love the world building, the terrifying creatures and there was a good mix between the dark storyline and the light-hearted, funny dynamic between Rook and Isobel. Rogerson has a descriptive and beautiful writing style that I fell in love with. If you love Holly Black and the ACOTAR series, you will definitely love this book! 

Read the full review. 

A Court of Thorns and Roses (ACOTAR #1)
Author - Sarah J.Maas
Publishing - May 5th 2015 by Bloomsbury Children's
Genre - Fantasy, Young Adult, New Adult, Romance
Pages - 419
Rating - ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

Feyre’s survival rests upon her ability to hunt and kill – the forest where she lives is a cold, bleak place in the long winter months. So when she spots a deer in the forest being pursued by a wolf, she cannot resist fighting it for the flesh. But to do so, she must kill the predator and killing something so precious comes at a price …

Dragged to a magical kingdom for the murder of a faerie, Feyre discovers that her captor, his face obscured by a jewelled mask, is hiding far more than his piercing green eyes would suggest. Feyre’s presence at the court is closely guarded, and as she begins to learn why, her feelings for him turn from hostility to passion and the faerie lands become an even more dangerous place. Feyre must fight to break an ancient curse, or she will lose him forever. 

Well, Sarah J. Maas has sucked me in another series. I started the Throne of Glass series first, so I didn’t know if I would enjoy ACOTAR as much however this was not the case. I LOVED this book. The weird thing is, I can’t really put my finger on what made me enjoy it so much! 

Maas’s world building was amazing as usual, and the same goes for her writing. The plot is very character driven, which I know some people find slow, however, this was not the case for me. Speaking of characters, I have to admit that Feyre annoyed me at first, but she did grow on me, and I started to appreciate how strong and fierce she is. I also admire her ability to care and provide for her family the way she did, even though they never once thanked her for it. I loved Tamlin and Lucien and liked their loyalty and banter with each other. And then there’s Rhysand. What a beautiful, dark and complicated character. I knew I would love him right from the start, despite him not given the best first impressions. 

This book really ticks all of the boxes for me: magic, fae, a wonderfully wicked villain and lots of romance (seriously… this book is very focused around romance and definitely leans towards New adult rather than YA). There are a few problematic issues within this book, although some of these can be (slightly) forgiven since this is a retelling of Beauty and the Beast. Overall, I really enjoyed ACOTAR and I actually like this book more than Throne of Glass

Do you have any helpful tips or advice to get over reading/creative slumps? Tell me in the comments, I would love your help!

Thanks for reading! x

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