Genre: Historical Fantasy

Review: All the Crooked Saints

I noticed pretty early on that I liked the concepts: inherent darkness taking strange and sometimes perilous shapes by miracles that have to be overcome, a radio station on wheels that holds the key to so many lives, the complicated relationships between the characters, the desert setting. However, I also realised I wasn’t sure whether I would come to like the book. In the end, I didn’t. In fact, it bored me so much I was very close to giving up on it …

Review: The Water Mirror (Dark Reflections #1)

There are books, and then there are books. You know, the ones that have turned into part of your DNA. This is one of mine, so it’s simply impossible for me to write an unbiased review. Instead, I give you my rave-y ramblings on the first instalment of one of my all-time favourite series …

Review: Winter Rose (Winter Rose, #1)

This one’s for the dreamers, for the ones loving getting lost in winter woods, for the ones enjoying delicate and thoughtful fairy tales. McKillip once again spins words into a beautiful, tranquil story about magic, curses, faerie realms, and love with only a handful of characters and a limited setting that reminded me a little of Naomi Novik’s more recent novel Uprooted

Review: Etiquette & Espionage (Finishing School, #1)

Welcome to the whimsically wonderful world of The Parasol Protectorate! In its YA incarnation, it’s just as steampunky, supernatural, and sublime – albeit demure. And yet, it shines with quirky characters, witty dialogue, adventurous episodes and an all-encompassing feel-good atmosphere …

Review: Siege & Storm (The Grisha, #2)

I read and reviewed Shadow and Bone in 2013. Spoiler: I didn’t like it much, which is why I never bought the sequels. A small part of me, however, was curious how the story would continue so when I got my new library membership, this was the first book I picked up. And what can I say? I’m glad I didn’t invest in the English hardcovers. I just can’t warm up to this series. Maybe I’m a little more critical than I usually would be because I didn’t like the first one. I don’t want to get too much into details here to keep it spoilerfree, but I’ve got a couple of things I want to address …

Review: Sekret

Let me tell you: it’s not as exciting as it sounds. Quite the opposite, in fact. One would think that a book with such a premise – the X-men under a vicious Professor X on a mission to protect a secret space programme set in the historical dystopia of Communist Russia – would be thrilling and utterly nerve-wracking. Unfortunately, that’s not the case. What I got was a great idea weakly executed with flat characters, a forseeable twist, and a writing style and tempo that bored me to death. It speaks volumes that I rejoiced upon finishing it after an eight months hiatus. Maybe I just shouldn’t have picked it up again . . .

Review: East

Have you ever heard of the Norwegian folk tale “East of the Sun and West of the Moon”? No? Well, me neither – until I read this wonderful retelling which is truly a fairytale in itself. But how could something based on a story with one of the most beautiful titles I ever heard be anything else but magical? To describe East in as little words as possible, I’d say it’s Beauty and the Beast plus trolls – and wind roses and mapmakers, superstition and prophecy, weaving, sewing and magical dresses, a castle inside a mountain, a light that should not have been lit, and a long and rocky journey to a palace in an icy barren land east of the sun and west of the moon . . .

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