Mini-reviews: Chronicles of the Infected, Swallowtail, and the Life Changing Manga of Tidying Up

Hello my fellow bookaholics ✨

Sorry about my abrupt December hiatus – I had a busy beginning of the month which turned into a travel-full holiday season. But I’m back at it and I can’t wait to write a whole bunch of fun end of year posts!

Today I have some mini-reviews of books that I have been extremely lucky to get from publishers and/or authors. These recent reads include dark dystopian, heart-wrenching poetry and mood-lifting manga 😊

I received a free copy of all of these books in exchange for an honest review. Thank you to the author, the publisher and Netgalley! Receiving a free review copy has in no way influenced my opinions.

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ARC Review: Fate of the Fallen by Kel Kade

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Fate of the Fallen by Kel Kade

Adult Fantasy

352 pages

Published on the 5th of November

Goodreads link

I received an e-arc in exchange for an honest review. Thank you so much for the publisher, the author and Netgalley! Receiving a free copy has in no way affected my opinions.

Trigger warnings: discussions of suicide, gore, violence, war, death, discussions of mental illness

Mathias is loved by everyone, he is handsome, strong and good at everything. Naturally, he is also the one and only who can save the world. When he finds out that he is the chosen one, he sets off on the journey of his life, his reliable side-kick, Aaslo, right behind him. However, saving the world isn’t as easy, or exciting, as it sounds in the stories. And absolutely everything goes wrong.

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ARC Review: The Deathless Girls by Kiran Millwood Hargrave

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The Deathless Girls by Kiran Millwood Hargrave

Published on the 19th of November

272 pages

YA, Fantasy

Goodreads page

I received an e-arc in exchange for an honest review. Thank you to the publisher, author and Netgalley! Receiving a free copy has in no way affected my opinions.

Gothic, intoxicating, feminist, darkly provoking and deeply romantic – this is the breathtakingly imagined untold story of the brides of Dracula, by bestselling author Kiran Millwood Hargrave in her much-anticipated YA debut.

They say the thirst of blood is like a madness – they must sate it. Even with their own kin.

On the eve of her divining, the day she’ll discover her fate, seventeen-year-old Lil and her twin sister Kizzy are captured and enslaved by the cruel Boyar Valcar, taken far away from their beloved traveller community.

Forced to work in the harsh and unwelcoming castle kitchens, Lil is comforted when she meets Mira, a fellow slave who she feels drawn to in a way she doesn’t understand. But she also learns about the Dragon, a mysterious and terrifying figure of myth and legend who takes girls as gifts.

They may not have had their divining day, but the girls will still discover their fate…

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ARC Review: Mooncakes by Suzanne Walker & Wendy Xu

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Mooncakes by Wendy Xu and Suzanne Walker

Graphic Novel

Goodreads page

Publication date: the 15th of October

I received an advance reader copy in exchange for an honest review. Thank you to the authors, publishers and Netgalley! Receiving a free copy has in no way influenced my opinions.

A story of love and demons, family and witchcraft.

Nova Huang knows more about magic than your average teen witch. She works at her grandmothers’ bookshop, where she helps them loan out spell books and investigate any supernatural occurrences in their New England town.

One fateful night, she follows reports of a white wolf into the woods, and she comes across the unexpected: her childhood crush, Tam Lang, battling a horse demon in the woods. As a werewolf, Tam has been wandering from place to place for years, unable to call any town home.

Pursued by dark forces eager to claim the magic of wolves and out of options, Tam turns to Nova for help. Their latent feelings are rekindled against the backdrop of witchcraft, untested magic, occult rituals, and family ties both new and old in this enchanting tale of self-discovery.

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ARC Review: To Be Taught, If Fortunate by Becky Chambers

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To Be Taught, If Fortunate by Becky Chambers

Sci-fi, novella

Goodreads page

176 pages

I was given a free e-arc in exchange for an honest review. Thank you to the publisher, the author and Netgalley! Receiving a free copy has in no way influenced my opinions.

Please note that all quotes in this review are from an advance reader copy and they might have been changed in the final book.

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ARC Review: Stepsister by Jennifer Donnelly

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Stepsister by Jennifer Donnelly

Published on the 14th of May 2019

YA Fantasy, Retelling

Goodreads page

I received a free e-copy in exchange for an honest review. Thank you to Netgalley, the author and the publisher! Receiving a free copy has in no way affected my opinions.

Isabelle should be blissfully happy – she’s about to win the handsome prince. Except Isabelle isn’t the beautiful girl who lost the glass slipper and captured the prince’s heart. She’s the ugly stepsister who’s cut off her toes to fit into Cinderella’s shoe… which is now filling with blood.

When the prince discovers Isabelle’s deception, she is turned away in shame. It’s no more than she deserves: she is a plain girl in a world that values beauty; a feisty girl in a world that wants her to be pliant.

Isabelle has tried to fit in. To live up to her mother’s expectations. To be like her stepsister. To be sweet. To be pretty. One by one, she has cut away pieces of herself in order to survive a world that doesn’t appreciate a girl like her. And that has made her mean, jealous, and hollow.

Until she gets a chance to alter her destiny and prove what ugly stepsisters have always known: it takes more than heartache to break a girl.

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ARC Review: A Pack of Blood and Lies by Olivia Wildenstein

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A Pack of Blood and Lies by Olivia Wildenstein

Published on the 18th of April 2019

362 pages, YA Fantasy/Action/Romance

Goodreads page

I received a free e-copy of the book in exchange for an honest review. Thank you so much to Netgalley, the author and the publisher. Receiving a free copy has in no way affected my opinion of the book. Also, my apologies for the late review!

Three months shy of her eighteenth birthday, Ness is forced to return to Colorado. Even though it’s been six years, and the wolves of her all-male pack don’t recognize her, she recognizes them. People who shun others because of their gender are hard to forget.

Especially Liam Kolane—son of Heath, the crudest and cruelest Alpha to have ruled the Boulder Pack. Liam is as handsome as he is infuriating, as kind as he is punishing, and he makes Ness’s traitorous heart race, which isn’t good. After all, he’s a Kolane. Like father like son, right?

When Heath dies, Liam vies to become the new Alpha and no one dares challenge him.

Except Ness.

Thus begins a treacherous game.

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A Curse so Dark and Lonely: Review & Aesthetic

A Curse so Dark and Lonely by Brigid Kemmerer

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I received a free e-arc in exchange for an honest review, thank you for the publisher, author and Netgalley! Receiving a free copy has in no way affected my opinions.

Goodreads link

Prince Rhen always taught that it would be easy to break the curse a powerful enchantress placed upon him. Simply find a girl who falls in love with him to break the spell of the autumn of his eighteenth year repeating over and over again. But that was before he knew that at the end of each fall he would turn into a vicious beast and destroy the castle and kill his own family.

After years and years, Harper is his only hope. Harper, who has learned that you have to be tough to survive with her mother slowly dying of cancer and her brother mixed up in dangerous affairs. Harper, who has been constantly underestimated because of her cerebral palsy but is in fact, strong and capable not in spite of her CP, but in addition to it.

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ARC Review: The Au Pair by Emma Rous

The Au Pair by Emma Rous

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Published on the 8th of January 2019

Goodreads link

⭐️ Star-rating at the bottom of this review ⭐️

I received a free e-arc copy of the Au Pair in exchange for an honest review. Thank you so much to Edelweiss, the publisher and the author! Receiving a free copy has in no way affected my opinions.

Seraphine has always wondered what happened on the day she was born. She has a loving older brother, a goofy twin-brother, and a generous grandma, but she is still puzzled about that one day 25 years ago when her mother committed suicide by jumping off a cliff right after the birth of her and her brother. Seraphine’s family has never wanted to talk about the past, but she is set on finding out what happened after going through her father’s things and finding a photograph of her mother holding one newborn baby, smiling happily on the day Seraphine and her brother were born. The only person who can tell her what happened is Laura, a girl who was the au pair in the family during that time and who swiftly disappeared in the middle of the tradegy.

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