Sunday, March 18, 2018

[Book Review] Furyborn by Claire Legrand

Furyborn (Empirium, #1)Furyborn by Claire Legrand
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Disclaimer: As a member of NetGalley, I received this galley in exchange for an honest review.

Part 1: From The Book Cover

Follows two fiercely independent young women, centuries apart, who hold the power to save their world...or doom it.

When assassins ambush her best friend, the crown prince, Rielle Dardenne risks everything to save him, exposing her ability to perform all seven kinds of elemental magic. The only people who should possess this extraordinary power are a pair of prophesied queens: a queen of light and salvation and a queen of blood and destruction. To prove she is the Sun Queen, Rielle must endure seven trials to test her magic. If she fails, she will be executed...unless the trials kill her first.

A thousand years later, the legend of Queen Rielle is a mere fairy tale to bounty hunter Eliana Ferracora. When the Undying Empire conquered her kingdom, she embraced violence to keep her family alive. Now, she believes herself untouchable--until her mother vanishes without a trace, along with countless other women in their city. To find her, Eliana joins a rebel captain on a dangerous mission and discovers that the evil at the heart of the empire is more terrible than she ever imagined.

As Rielle and Eliana fight in a cosmic war that spans millennia, their stories intersect, and the shocking connections between them ultimately determine the fate of their world--and of each other.

Part 2: Recommendation

The first two chapters of this book was quite confusing but after that, it becomes quite entertaining. A bit slow at first then it picks up the pace on both Rielle's and Eliana's chapters halfway through the book. Though each chapter alternates POVs between Rielle and Eliana, the story easily picks up where the last POV chapter leaves off so basically, you can read this book three ways: read all of Rielle's chapters first then Eliana's chapters or Eliana's chapters first then Rielle's chapters or read it from cover to cover with the alternating POV chapters like I did. Either way, you'll be able to easily follow the storyline.

Classified as a YA Fantasy book, I think this book should be reclassified as New Adult (NA) Fantasy because there was one romantic scene that was quite graphic and I don't think it is appropriate for young adults even though Rielle & Eliana are somewhat aged at around 18 years old, they both act and read a lot older like maybe 21 years old and the readers who might be picking up this book may not be mature enough for the mentioned romantic scene. I will have to reserve judgment on its merits as a fantasy book because so far, being the first book in a trilogy, it has only two fantasy elements in it: magic and violence. It did touch on Rielle's challenge or seven magical trials and on Eliana's quest but only a little bit. So I'm hoping that the other fantasy elements will come out and grow as the books progress.

Love all the characters in this book especially Rielle, Eliana and Remy and the plot is quite interesting and I can't wait to get my hands on book two.

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[Book Review] Paris By The Book by Liam Callanan

Paris by the BookParis by the Book by Liam Callanan
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Disclaimer: As a member of NetGalley, I received this galley in exchange for an honest review.

Part 1: From The Book Cover

A missing person, a grieving family, a curious clue: a half-finished manuscript set in Paris. Heading off in search of its author, a mother and her daughters find themselves in France, rescuing a failing bookstore and drawing closer to unexpected truths.

Once a week, I chase men who are not my husband….

When eccentric novelist Robert Eady abruptly vanishes, he leaves behind his wife, Leah, their daughters, and, hidden in an unexpected spot, plane tickets to Paris.

Hoping to uncover clues—and her husband—Leah sets off for France with her girls. Upon their arrival, she discovers an unfinished manuscript, one Robert had been writing without her knowledge…and that he had set in Paris. The Eady women follow the path of the manuscript to a small, floundering English-language bookstore whose weary proprietor is eager to sell. The whole store? Today? Yes, but Leah’s biggest surprise comes when she hears herself accepting the offer on the spot.

As the family settles into their new Parisian life, they can’t help but trace the literary paths of some beloved Parisian classics, including Madeline and The Red Balloon, hoping more clues arise. But a series of startling discoveries forces Leah to consider that she may not be ready for what solving this mystery might do to her family—and the Paris she thought she knew.

At once haunting and charming, Paris by the Book follows one woman’s journey as her story is being rewritten, exploring the power of family and the magic that hides within the pages of a book.

Part 2: Recommendation

I'm not exactly sure what possessed me to request a galley of this book. I'm guessing mainly because of the description and the fact that one of the characters is a writer and another, a bookseller. I have to say though that the author Liam Callanan writes beautiful prose that has a lyrical quality to it and it shows in this book. Unfortunately, for me at least, that is the only good point to this book.

Though the prose has that beautiful, lyrical quality to it, the pacing is extremely slow, it's not really what I would call a mystery and the meandering prose going back and forth between Milwaukee and Paris just about killed me to the point where I almost decided to not finish the book. But I did and wished I didn't waste any more of my time finishing this book because the characters, especially the wife, Leah, was quite annoying and a bit flat. The two daughters, Ellie and Daphne, also need more depth to them and I felt like Declan's character was placed there just to stir the pot a bit. Eleanor's character is okay in the sense that she's the most practical of them all though still a bit flat, and as for Robert Eady himself, well, I have to say that the little bit that I knew about him, I didn't truly like. He's selfish, self-centered and I've had enough of his drama.

Now, if you are a big fan of The Little Paris Bookshop and are hoping to get the same experience, stay away from this book because you will be sadly disappointed. However, if you want to read about what others think of The Red Balloon or about Madeline or about snippets of Lamorrisse' life and works as well as of Bemelman's then this might be worth your time.

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