Saturday, May 1, 2021

Book Review: Counting Down With You by Tashie Bhuiyan

Counting Down with YouCounting Down with You by Tashie Bhuiyan
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

So this book made me cry. Not because it's a sad book but because it resonated with me.

As an Indian with slightly strict and conservative parents, it reminded me of a time when I used to be shit scared of my parents and did not keep communication lines with them open. Karina Ahmed was ME at one point of time and that's what made me cry.


I was originally drawn towards this book because FAKE DATING and the fact that it featured an asian protagonist was a BONUS

While it wasn't as light as I expected because Karina suffers from anxiety and being inside her mind can either make you anxious or irritated (depending on how much you relate to her), I enjoyed reading this book.

It portrayed a healthy relationship between Karina and her friends. For once, parents were in the picture and the "bad boy" wasn't a jerk. He was just different from Karina and was going through his own issues.

I'd recommend this book to anyone that feels they are alone, especially if they're suffering from anxiety or have strict parents.

View all my reviews

Wednesday, March 31, 2021

The Blurb That Did Not Disappoint (A review of Prison Healer by Lynette Noni)


The Prison Healer (The Prison Healer, #1)The Prison Healer by Lynette Noni
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

You know a book is good when you remember to write a review close to the release date!

Prison Healer was a book that intrigued me because of its blurb. I mean how GREAT is the blurb!

For once, the blurb did not disappoint.

Kiva is in a real prison. She doesn't expect to get out and as readers we feel her hopelessness and we don't expect a prison heist or a knight in shining armour to rescue her. That's what really made me love this book. It focuses on setting the scene and builds all the characters very well.Before you know it, you're invested!

I'm invested in Kiva's journey and I want to know what happens next. I also enjoyed the elemental challenges.

Reminded me of Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire.

Basically, this book ticked all the boxes:

* Strong Characters
*Great World Building
* Prison/Dystopian Setting
* Fantasy+ Magic+ Romance
* Right amount of mystique and mystery
* An ending I did not see coming
* A romance that did not make me cringe

One thing that really impressed me about this book is how it managed to surprise me at the end. I don't want to spoil anyone but a lot of stuff happens that really took me by surprise.

Overall, I cannot wait for the sequel.

The only reason this is not getting a 5 is because I don't see myself re-reading the book, but I came very close to giving it a 5. Definitely worth a read!

My Rating: 4.25 stars

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Wednesday, September 4, 2019

Book Review: Sapphire Flames by Ilona Andrews

Sapphire Flames (Hidden Legacy, #4)Sapphire Flames by Ilona Andrews
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I'm a huge Ilona Andrews fan, anything they write.. I generally enjoy.
I'm happy to say the statement above applies to this wonderful book as well. While I wouldn't rate it a solid 5 on an Ilona Andrews scale, its a 5 when compared to a book written by any other author.

What I Liked
*Nevada and Rogan aren't forgotten, they're still there and their absence is explained as well as why Catalina and not Nevada is head of the house.

* Pace of the novel

* Strong female protagonist

* Easy to like male protagonist

* Interesting and well thought out plot

What I Didn't
I had a slight issue with the insta-love/relationship between Catalina and Alessandro.They're not together, don't worry I'm not spoiling the plot, this point addresses what happened before the book and how it justifies Catalina's attraction to him. I would have preferred if her attraction to Alessandro wasn't so instant or encouraged by everyone around her.

Cannot wait for the sequel!

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Wednesday, May 8, 2019

Book Review: The Bride Test by Helen Hoang

The Bride Test (The Kiss Quotient, #2)The Bride Test by Helen Hoang
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

FIRST REACTION: This book had heart. So much heart and it was so cute. I'm missing out on sleep because of it but I have no regrets

Full Review
I was lucky enough to receive an advance copy of this book just after I finished The Kiss Quotient. I devoured this book and enjoyed it much more than its predecessor. The book has a lot of elements that I enjoy and I will list them out in detail below:

The arranged marriage trope

I'm a sucker for the arranged marriage trope as it generally leads to hilarious situations. This book took it up a notch and made the trope super fun yet did not take the attention away from the heart of the book, its characters.


I loved both the protagonists of this novel. As it is told from a duel point of view, the reader gets insight into the minds of both the unique characters. Unlike Stella (from The Kiss Quotient), Khai's voice seemed more natural and his autism more unpretentious. His raw emotions jump off the screen, despite his belief that he has none. Esme is a breath of fresh air. She is a feminist at heart despite being a victim of her circumstances. She isn't money hungry or an opportunist willing to do whatever it takes for a green card. She is a genuine female with wants and needs who is loyal to a fault. It was a pleasure reading this book because of the well etched out and humane characters, belonging to diverse backgrounds.

Vietnamese Culture

I loved reading To All The Boys I loved... because it introduced me to Korean culture. Similarly, this book focuses more on Vietnamese culture and heritage. While it doesn't take centre stage, I loved this tiny insight into the Vietnamese culture.

Overall, this book is cotton candy with substance. As it combines all the elements of a beautiful HEA romance and gives it a unique twist. I would highly recommend it to romance lovers as well as individuals who occasionally read romance.

View all my reviews

Wednesday, June 27, 2018

Review: Iron and Magic by Ilona Andrews

Iron and Magic (The Iron Covenant #1)

No day is ordinary in a world where Technology and Magic compete for supremacy…But no matter which force is winning, in the apocalypse, a sword will always work. 

Hugh d’Ambray, Preceptor of the Iron Dogs, Warlord of the Builder of Towers, served only one man. Now his immortal, nearly omnipotent master has cast him aside. Hugh is a shadow of the warrior he was, but when he learns that the Iron Dogs, soldiers who would follow him anywhere, are being hunted down and murdered, he must make a choice: to fade away or to be the leader he was born to be. Hugh knows he must carve a new place for himself and his people, but they have no money, no shelter, and no food, and the necromancers are coming. Fast. 

Elara Harper is a creature who should not exist. Her enemies call her Abomination; her people call her White Lady. Tasked with their protection, she's trapped between the magical heavyweights about to collide and plunge the state of Kentucky into a war that humans have no power to stop. Desperate to shield her people and their simple way of life, she would accept help from the devil himself—and Hugh d’Ambray might qualify. 

Hugh needs a base, Elara needs soldiers. Both are infamous for betraying their allies, so how can they create a believable alliance to meet the challenge of their enemies? 

As the prophet says: “It is better to marry than to burn.” 

Hugh and Elara may do both. 

Note: This book is not suitable for younger readers and is classified as Adult. 

Source: Netgalley (Thank you for providing me a copy for review!)

My Thoughts:

Let me start off by stating this book has not been on my TBR pile or even close to the top of my TBR pile because I am not a Hugh fan. Personally, when this book was announced I felt it was an unnecessary spin off.

The only reason I decided to give this book a shot is because I've been dying to read Kate 1o a.k.a Magic Triumphs and because Ilona Andrews was kind enough to give me a review copy via Netgalley.

I am so glad that I gave this book a shot because I.NEED.MORE.HUGH.AND.ELARA.AND IRON DOGS in my life.



Why Kate Daniels Fans should pick up this book 
I'd recommend every Kate Daniels(KD) fan pick it up because a lot of important shit happens which will definitely be used in Kate 10. Many questions also come up about Hugh, Roland, Kate and their relationship in general which I hadn't really focused on before.

I felt I understood Roland and Hugh better after reading this book. I also realised how similar Hugh and Kate were in their upbringing. I love how much depth this book adds to the KD world.

As I want to avoid spoilers I will just say that I squealed with joy whenever there were any references to the KD world and there were MANY.

Why readers in general should pick it up 

Now some readers who venture into this book without any background or any information regarding Kate Daniels might be a little lost especially in the beginning. There are a lot of links to the KD world but Ilona Andrews introduces various new characters that would help orient the new reader. I also felt that while there were many references to the KD world , this book has it's own protagonists and villains.
It links to the overarching story of Roland & Kate (KD world characters) but also focuses on a character(Hugh) that is detached from the protagonists in the KD world(Kate and Curran).

I'll try to get my fan girl self under control and give a proper review

Main Book Review 

Character Development: The reason why this book was enjoyable and why I would be re-reading it again is because of the stellar character development. Ilona Andrews books always focus on character development and this book does not disappoint. Hugh and Elara are characters I want to read more about.

Mythology & World Building: We're introduced to a completely new species/clan(?) and their politics. I really enjoy the fact that the characters have to use their brain to deal with situations in a fantastical world different but very much like our own.

Dialogues and Wit : Ilona Andrews books are witty and this book is no exception. The dialogues and the way the characters manage to make death and murder fun is commendable.

This book has murder, magic,blood magic, betrayal, magical beasts, fanatics , weird occultist stuff, werewolves, assassins, vampires and so much more..

Overall, I really enjoyed the book and cannot wait for the sequel. I'd suggest you grab this one as soon as it becomes available.

Sunday, May 27, 2018

Review: Everless by Sara Holland

Everless (Everless #1)
by Sara Holland 

Time is a prison. She is the key. Packed with danger, temptation and desire - a perfect read for fans of The Red Queen. 

In the land of Sempera, the rich control everything - even time. Ever since the age of alchemy and sorcery, hours, days and years have been extracted from blood and bound to iron coins. The rich live for centuries; the poor bleed themselves dry.

Jules and her father are behind on their rent and low on hours. To stop him from draining himself to clear their debts, Jules takes a job at Everless, the grand estate of the cruel Gerling family.

There, Jules encounters danger and temptation in the guise of the Gerling heir, Roan, who is soon to be married. But the web of secrets at Everless stretches beyond her desire, and the truths Jules must uncover will change her life for ever ... and possibly the future of time itself.

My Thoughts:

I've been unable to read a book for a while because of work and it's one of the main reasons I was unable to blog or review books. I've still been active on my Goodreads but I haven't had time to blog. This book has been on my radar for a while because the blurb caught my fancy. While I did finish the book in a day, I find that this book didn't really WOW me. 


World Building & Premise

I loved the premise of the novel. It reminded me of the film In Time (starring: Justin Timberlake). I wasn't sure whether the author would be able to explain how the world works clearly but she did a very good job. She builds the world,its rules as well as its mythology wonderfully. At times the world building takes us away from the plot but it always links to the characters in the end. 

The Politics & Parallels to Reality

The novel is set in a world in which time is currency. I loved the way the novel showcased the way people in power hoarded time and taxed normal individuals. It didn't shy away from showcasing the reality through fantasy. The rich keep getting richer but at what cost? For once, a YA novel does not just tell you about the cost but paints a picture of it through words. Everless represents and showcases poverty and as well as class politics masterfully. 


Predictable Storyline

The storyline is extremely predictable as I feel the author gives too many clues before delivering the 'unexpected' twists. There were certain key events that I could not predict but I was able to anticipate and correctly guess where the narrative was heading. 

Insta-Love/Puppy love

Jules has been in love with a character in this book since she was a child. This childhood love just frustrated me as her interaction with this character throughout the book was scarce. He is supposed to be the main love interest but his character needed to be developed much more. I just couldn't get invested in this relationship.

Character Development

There were many characters in the book that I could have grown to love, but as the book focused on the world building and mythology, character development took a back-seat. 

Overall, while I did enjoy the novel I am not invested enough to rush and pick up the sequel, despite the cliffhanger ending. 

My Rating:

3 stars
I enjoyed it but I'm not invested enough to pick up the sequel


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