Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Grey (Fifty Shades #4) by E.L. James

Fifty Shades #4
E L James
Contemporary Romance
ebook, 576 pages
18th June 2015 by Knopf Doubleday

Goodreads Rating : 3.88/5
My Rating : 1.5/5

See the world of Fifty Shades of Grey anew through the eyes of Christian Grey.

In Christian's own words, and through his thoughts, reflections, and dreams, E L James offers a fresh perspective on the love story that has enthralled millions of readers around the world.

Christian Grey exercises control in all things; his world is neat, disciplined, and utterly empty—until the day that Anastasia Steele falls into his office, in a tangle of shapely limbs and tumbling brown hair. He tries to forget her, but instead is swept up in a storm of emotion he cannot comprehend and cannot resist. Unlike any woman he has known before, shy, unworldly Ana seems to see right through him—past the business prodigy and the penthouse lifestyle to Christian’s cold, wounded heart.  

Will being with Ana dispel the horrors of his childhood that haunt Christian every night? Or will his dark sexual desires, his compulsion to control, and the self-loathing that fills his soul drive this girl away and destroy the fragile hope she offers him?

Okay so maybe I'm biased while reading this. But there are just too many bad talks about this book that it kinda got into me.

1) Where in fsog Ana has her inner goddess speaking, here in Grey, Christian has his own monologue as well. And honest to God, I don't like being in Grey's mind at all. It's rude and disturbing. I'm gonna admit here that before Grey happened, I really really really love Christian Grey. He WAS one of my ultimate book boyfriend. I was obsessed with him for like a month. I used to picture him as this one tall, dark and handsome guy being all intense, powerful and intimidating. He actually seems like one in the trilogy. But then the movie happened and hes FAR from the Christian I have in mind. But its okay I still can tolerate that. BUT WHEN GREY CAME ? I'M OFF. Strong ? Powerful ? Intense ? Intimidating ? You can kiss that Christian goodbye. EL James made Christian sounds like this one sex-drive man that will get your nose and eyes all scrunched up out of disgust. 

2) Nothing significant happens in this book. Its merely Fifty Shades of Grey #1 with Christian's POV. And okay maybe a few insights but meh, not THAT interesting.

3) There are TOO MANY simple action/useless things written that I think is completely unnecessary. You'd know when you read it.

4) Oh my God, the excessive usage of the word 'baby'. There are exactly 102 'baby' in this book.(Thanks, iBooks). I didn't notice it at first but then it happens WAAAAYYYYY too much that I cant help but feel irritated.

"Yeah, yeah, baby"

"Suck it up, baby"

"Oh no, baby"

"Yes, baby"

"Oh, I could stop your fidgeting, baby" 

"You'd be amaze at what I can do with cable ties, baby"

"Oh, baby, DIY is not my thing"

"Don't tempt me, baby"

Seriously though, EL James, dont you know any other endearing terms ???

5) I can't help but think that the only reason EL James wrote this book are because of money and popularity. Sorry.

6) If you are a fan of Twilight, you would know that there is Midnight Sun-- which is basically Twilight but with Edward's POV -- (SOUNDS FAMILIAR, HUH ?). Only thing is that Midnight Sun is never published. My question is, why is EL James so obsessed with Stephenie Meyer ???? (Grey has almost the same cover as Meyer's The Host, fyi /coughs/)

I dont have anything against people who actually enjoy reading this book. To each their own, I guess. There are admittedly some enjoyable parts but its not strong enough to outweigh the rest of the contents.

Over all, I dont think this book should happen, at all. I wish I never read this. EL James ruined my Christian. Brb crying.

Wednesday, July 8, 2015

The Wrath and The Dawn (The Wrath and The Dawn #1) by Renee Ahdieh

The Wrath and The Dawn
The Wrath and The Dawn #1
Renee Ahdieh
New Adult, Romance, Fantasy
Paperback, 416 pages
12th May 2015 by Putnam

Goodreads Ratings : 4.15/5
My Rating : 4/5

A sumptuous and epically told love story inspired by A Thousand and One Nights

Every dawn brings horror to a different family in a land ruled by a killer. Khalid, the eighteen-year-old Caliph of Khorasan, takes a new bride each night only to have her executed at sunrise. So it is a suspicious surprise when sixteen-year-old Shahrzad volunteers to marry Khalid. But she does so with a clever plan to stay alive and exact revenge on the Caliph for the murder of her best friend and countless other girls. Shazi's wit and will, indeed, get her through to the dawn that no others have seen, but with a catch . . . she’s falling in love with the very boy who killed her dearest friend.

She discovers that the murderous boy-king is not all that he seems and neither are the deaths of so many girls. Shazi is determined to uncover the reason for the murders and to break the cycle once and for all.

The Wrath And The Dawn in my opinion is one of the hardest book to review. 48 hours has passed since I finished reading the book and I’m still not entirely sure what I think of it. I love the book, but I don’t love it. If you think youre confused, I am far more confused than you are, trust me. THIS IS GONNA BE A LONG REVIEW ANYWAY.

So TW&TD is a story between Shahrzad the girl with a strong determination to seek revenge and the mysterious young Caliph of Khorasan, Khalid. I was expecting a lot of stories between stories, you know ? 1001 Nights retelling and all but its not. The book has more to tell than just tales of distractions. It has an element of magic, pure love, understanding, trust and A LOT OF CONFUSION.

To be honest, I struggled with the writing in the first place. It’s a bit twisted that it was hard for me to fathom at one go but I got used to it by the middle of the book. It’s set in the Middle East, so there are a few Arabic terms here and there. There’s a word glossary at the back of the book to help you understand the setting but having to constantly flip the pages isn’t fun at all. In case youre wondering.

“So you would have me throw Shazi to the wolves?”
“Shazi?” Jalal’s grin widened. “Honestly, I pity the wolves.”

Shahrzad (Shazi) is a force to be reckoned with. She’s fierce, strong, determined and she knows how to handle a fight. Basically everyone’s favourite lead character. Khalid on the other hand is very very mysterious. You know when I first read the blurb of the book and there it says ‘boy-king’, I immediately got reminded of Joffrey from Game of Thrones. Boy-king, murders innocent people, heartless. You know it fits. But Khalid and Joffrey is a very different person altogether. Khalid is everything Joffrey’s not. For someone as young as him, hes so mature beyond his age. I love love love him. Slowly in the book, his mysterious character got revealed one by one. And with more things unveiled, I love him even more. (HA YOU’D BE LYING IF YOU DON’T ONCE YOUVE READ THE BOOK)

The main focus of this book is actually the romance. How love changes it all. Khalid and Shazi’s love is profoundly beautiful. It’s built out of trust and understanding which most marriage lost. But most of all, I fell in love with Khalid’s idea of love.

“I want someone who sees beneath the surface-someone who completes the balance. An equal.”
“And how will you know when you’ve found this elusive someone?” Shahrzad retorted.

“I suspect she will be like air. Like knowing how to breathe.” 

I mean, how can someone so strong and heartless SPEAK SUCH WORDS WITH ALL THESE CRAZY INTENSITY ???

 “My soul sees its equal in you.” 

Does he know what his words did to me ?!!?!?!/1

 “Get up, Shahrzad al-Khayzuran. You kneel before no one. Least of all me.”

 JUST HOW ?!!?!?!?!?1?!/!?!?!?!/
This is not fair. Life isn’t fair.  

All swoons aside, I found something unsettling regarding the romance, though. It doesn’t develop well in the beginning in my opinion. Don’t get me wrong, they are still good together but while it was developing, something feels wrong to me. Like something is missing from the picture. *SPOILER* Shazi is so determined to kill Khalid right from the start. That determination however is suddenly swayed in a few days by her feelings towards him when hardly NOTHING hugely romantic happened during those 2 days that can result in having a crush so quick, you know ? That process doesn’t settle quite well to me. Maybe I’m the only who thinks that way. Maybe I don’t. *SPOILER ENDS*

There are also a few side stories which in my opinion, are not exactly well-developed. There is Jalal and Despina who should have more stories on them written. I WANT THEIR ROMANCE TOO DAMMIT. There’s also a few magic elements that left me so freaking confused because I understand absolutely nothing. And then there’s Tariq who is Shazi’s boyfriend. I’ve said it before that I don’t deal with love triangles that well so when he comes around I was so irritated  because GET OFF MY SHIP YOU NOSY ASS. He doesn’t do anything wrong hes just trying to get his girl back BUT GOSH DUDE MOVE ON SHE DOESN’T WANT YOU ANYMORE.

In my conclusion, this first part of a duology is a HUGE CHUNK OF CONFUSION. There are still a lot of things left unresolved and unexplained but it still is a good book nonetheless. This book requires a lot of discussion in my opinion, SO EVERYONE PLEASE READ THIS BOOK SO I CAN DISCUSS THEORIES AND SOLVE A BIT OF MY CONFUSION WITH YOU GUYS PLEASE !!!

It ends on a bad note, in case if you feel the need to be prepared. If you want it to be a good ending and not feeling all heartbroken or wanting the next book fast (found this advice somewhere, thought I’d share with you), do not read the last 2 chapters. Read it once youre ready to read the second book. Make the last 2 chapters be the first chapter of the book two. Or you’ll be miserable. Like me.

 “We women are a sad lot, aren't we?"
"What do you mean?"
"Strong enough to take on the world with our bare hands, yet we permit ridiculous boys to make fools of us." - Renee Ahdieh, The Wrath and The Dawn

Saturday, July 4, 2015

A Court of Thorns and Roses ( A Court of Thorns and Roses #1) by Sarah J. Maas

A Court of Thorns and Roses
A Court of Thorns and Roses #1
Sarah J. Maas
New Adult, Fantasy
Paperback, 416 pages
5th May 2015 by Bloomsbury's Children

Goodreads Ratings : 4.34/5
My Rating : 5/5

The breathtaking start to a seductive high-fantasy from New York Times bestselling author of Throne of Glass series.

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.

"Be glad of your human heart, Feyre. Pity those who don't feel anything at all.” - Rhysand


WHAT WAS THAT ?!!?!?1?1?!

ACOTAR is my first book of the highly-praised Sarah J. Maas. I was so afraid to start this to be honest because this fantasy genre isn’t exactly my best forte (Full exception on Harry Potter hehe) What if this book and her writing style isn’t my cup of tea ? What if I would be the minority who wouldn't enjoy this despite all the glory ? But I’m so glad that I took a step and brace myself with whatever possibility that might arise BECAUSE THIS IS ONE OF THE BEST BOOKS I HAVE READ THIS YEAR NO KIDDING. I would come down to say that Sarah J. Maas is the princess of the fantasy world. Considering the queen will always be JK Rowling. But still, YOU KICKED ASS SARAH !!!

ACOTAR is the first installment of the A Court of Thorns and Roses trilogy. It’s about a 19 years old girl named Feyre (pronounced as Fay-ruh) who killed a soul while she was hunting for food and was being hold captive by a faerie for her crime, only to let herself be fully involved with love, sacrifices and the magic world. Or Faeries world. Same difference.

I love this book. I love the characters, the relationships, the romance, the love triangle, the villains, the world, the setting. EVERYTHING. Feyre is a lead character who doesn’t have any special abilities. Most of her success are purely out of luck. She’s not Katniss Everdeen nor she is Hermione Granger. Well at least, shes not Bella Swan. Shes your typical girl who is stubborn and wouldn’t listen to orders but shes kind and responsible and knows what she wants. She might be frustrating at times but shes the strong force of this book.

“Because I wouldn't want to die alone, I said,and my voice wobbled as I looked at Tamlin again,forcing myself to meet his stare.Because I'd want someone to hold my hand until the end, and awhile after that.That's something everyone deserves, human or faerie.” - Feyre

One of the things that I really really love about ACOTAR is the romance between Feyre and Tamlin. ITS NOT INSTA LOVE YOU GUYS THANK GOD ! All those books on insta love are making me sick. I love how the romance is built slowly out of trust and not pure lust. It is beautifully developed that I can’t help but to fall in love too.

There is a bit love triangle on the second half of the book and I am really surprised when I found myself liking it. I’m not a fan of love triangles. I have this tendency to hate the other character that disturbs the couple that I shipped. BUT I DON’T HATE RHYSAND. AT ALL. I LOVE HIM EVEN. (to the point of being okay if Feyre-Tamlin didn’t work out and Feyre be with Rhysand instead oops) I found a few people who dislike Rhysand for being a bit rude and stuffs but lol I seem to have no problem of that. Rhysand to me is like Choi Young Do of the Korean drama The Heirs. So far there is no love feelings on Feyre side for Rhysand but I don’t know about the next books. But I would love Sarah J. Maas to death if she built another character later in the trilogy for Rhysand to fall head over heels with. PLEASE DO, SARAH. PLEASE. Please allow Rhysand to have some happiness.

The setting and world building of the Faeries World is beautifully written and descriptive that I can imagine every scene down to every detail. I got too invested and absorbed in this book that I felt like I was there with the characters in every step of their stories. I also found myself having to stop to take a few breath, rubbed my face a few times and just chill BECAUSE THE FEELS WERE OVERWHELMING. I was never left emotionless by this book.

The ending is satisfying with no cliffhanger, but it’s enough to left me wanting the sequel. There are still a few things left unanswered but considering this is the first book of the trilogy, it’s understandable.

There are some obvious weaknesses and flaws that I can point out but I love it nonetheless. This is what I feel about this book so despite whatever bad reviews it may receive by others (which is not that many btw), my feelings are going to stay the same. 

ACOTAR reminds me how much I love reading for the joy it brings me, and for that reason alone, A Court of Thorns and Roses has become one of my best read of 2015.

“I love you,’ he whispered, and kissed my brow. ‘Thorns and all.” - Sarah J. Maas, A Court of Thorns and Roses