5 reasons why you need to read The Darcy Monologues edited by Christina Boyd

★★★★★ 

  • release date: 21st of May
  • paperback, 404 pages
  • anthology of short stories (15) inspired by Pride & Prejudice and from the POV of our beloved Darcy
  • Goodreads
  • Amazon

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I feel like I am not the only big fan of Fitzwilliam Darcy from P&P. While reading P&P, I kept thinking to myself, “What is Darcy thinking now?”. Darcy is the OG of the brooding, snarky “bad boy”. A few months ago, I was browsing Goodreads and suddenly I stumbled upon this anthology. In this anthology you get 15 short stories from Darcy’s point of view. The editor kindly send me a copy because in Belgium we have a hard time getting self-published ebooks. She didn’t expect a review in exchange for a copy, she was just happy that I was interested so you she offered me a copy. I started this anthology after my exams (in July) and totally forgot to write a review after all the travelling I did.

I absolutely fell in love with this anthology and I highly recommend it for any P&P fan out there.


5 reasons why this stands out from all the other P&P inspired books/stories

  • You get an in depth look at Darcy’s thoughts in some of the most iconic scenes from P&P.

    You get Darcy’s thoughts when he meets Elizabeth, after his rejected marriage proposal, honeymoon,…

  • You get more of Darcy and Elizabeth’s lives together after their marriage. You get to see their future together.

    Darcy has a kid and you see his thoughts when Elizabeth delivers their son. You get some flashforwards (40 years later). 

  • You get 7 stories in different eras inspired by P&P.

    You get to see Darcy and Elizabeth in modern time periods and other ones (and WW II!!). 

  • You get tons of original stories with an unexpected twist.

    You get a story inspired by Beauty & The Beast. You get Darcy & Elizabeth’s story in a “cliché” story (student/teacher relationship) and tons other twists on P&P. 

  • You get a variety of different authors (all big fans of P&P and Darcy).

    You get to experience 15 author’s writing style, original story on P&P. If you don’t like a specific author, don’t fret you get a lot of different stories. This is the perfect anthology for a read-a-thon because each story stands on its own. 

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Why you need to read Now I Rise by Kiersten White / eARC Review

Now I Rise (The Conqueror’s saga #2)  by Kiersten White 

Rating : ★★★★★

Genres : YA , Fantasy

Publication Date : 27th of June by Delacorte Press

Diversity : gay main character , lesbian side character 

 

 

 

 

I received a review copy from NetGalley in exchange for a review. 

*spoilers for And I Darken*

And I Darken is a Vlad the Impaler reimagining  but Vlad is not a man but a woman!

And I Darken was one of my favorite reads of last year so I was highly anticipating this sequel and I was not disappointed! This sequel was everything I wished for and more and is definitely on my favorites list of this year.

Now I Rise gets even more complex than the first book , we follow the repercussions of the first book after the rebellion of the Janissaries. Mehmed and Radu are working on conquering Constantinople while Lada is trying to get her home country back (Wallachia).  And I Darken started out slow but Now I Rise started immediately action packed and I couldn’t put it down. The story and the characters suck you in immediately.

 

Mehmed and Radu are both left behind by Lada and both are grieving their “loss” differently. I felt bad for Radu because he thought that if Lada was out of the picture he could get closer to Mehmed and maybe a romance would spark. Their friendship really blossoms in this sequel and it’s very interesting to see how Mehmed depends on Radu. Radu is a flawed main character and I loved following him. I loved seeing his relationship with his “wife” Nazira, they have an amazing friendship. I loved how Kiersten White discusses different religion aspects from the Islam while incorporating them in the plot . Nazira and Fatima were well developed side characters and I respected Kiersten a lot for that because often they are just background noise which wasn’t the case here.

Lada continues her quest to get her country, Wallachia back. Lada is the most complex character I have seen in YA. She left her romantic interest in the first book without looking back which was impressing and I would have never expected. Normally, in YA woman are always somehow bound to their love interest but Lada didn’t hesitate a second to leave Mehmed for her own personal gain which I found incredible (girl power). We often see woman making sacrifices for their love interest but not the other way around. I love Lada because she is bloodthirsty and smart at the same time. Seeing her work along side Hunyadi. Lada proves to everyone that she is not “wife material” and breaks every stereotypical expectation. The banter between Lada and her loyal soldiers is the comic relief we need throughout this dark book.

Kiersten White manages to balance plot, religious aspects and characters perfectly. I was impressed by this sequel and highly recommend it to everyone!

 

 

A Court of Wings and Ruin by Sarah J. Maas / book review *spoilers*

  • Rating : 5 stars (maybe?)
  • NA, Fantasy

This was one of my most anticipated releases and I still don’t know how I feel about it. I have some mixed feelings and those feelings might get me a lot of hate so please be nice.

The Things I loved 

  • I loved Feyre’s shenanigans in The Spring Court. I loved how she tried to make Tamlin jealous by going to Lucien to seek comfort after a “nightmare”.
  • I loved how Feyre and Lucien killed the Hybern’s cousin & niece and when she made Ianthe break her own hand. Those were some brutal and action packed scenes.
  • I also really liked Lucien and Feyre trip to get to the Night Court. They both were unsure of each other’s intentions. When they were suddenly ambushed by Lucien’s “brothers” from the Autumn Court, I was so scared that something would happen but fortunately Cassian and Azriel saved the day.
  • Feyre finally seeing Rhys again was heartbreaking and it was so heartwarming to see them finally reconnect.
  •  Cassian and Nesta’s bickering and banter and off the charts chemistry was the highlight of this book. (The next book has to be from their perspective!)
  • We get to know more of Azriel & Mor’s backstory , which I loved. (I appreciate Sarah finally putting some diversity in her books.)
  • Elain is a seer! What a plot twist.
  • The meeting with all of the other high lords from the other courts was highly entertaining and full with reveals. I loved meeting all of these characters (especially Helion and Vivian).
  • I hope to see more of Helion and maybe him getting to know his son LUCIEN. Who saw that coming?!
  • The battlefields were heartwreching and I loved Nesta and Cassian sudden closeness.
  • Tamlin’ redemption at the end was what I wanted.
  • The ending was beautiful (last chapters)

The Things I Disliked

  • Seeing so little of Amren (she miss her witty remarks)
  • Only getting Feyre’s POV, this was one of the major things that bothered me with this book. I felt very hindered by only getting her POV. I would have loved to get a few different perspective on everything that was happening.
  • Cassian healing was kind of not important and I would have loved seeing Nesta take care of him.
  • Tamlin being a jerk at the meeting.
  • Nesta having a shitty personality 60% of the book. I would have loved to see Elain and Nesta training with the Inner Circle.
  • Lucien and Elain getting no progression with their mating bond.
  • Mor’s revelation felt a little forced and coming from no where. I don’t like to think that Azriel had being led on my Mor for centuries. It just doesn’t make sense. How crappy of a friend can you be to make him thing that he’s unworthy of you so you can hide your sexual identity.
  • A lot of things are left unresolved!!!! (big frustration)

Alex, Approximately & You’ve Got Mail / Book & Movie Review (non-spoiler)

 

Alex, Approximately / short book review

  • Contemporary (You’ve Got Mail retelling)
  • 391 pages
  • 4.5/5 stars
  • Published April 4th 2017

The one guy Bailey Rydell can’t stand is actually the boy of her dreams—she just doesn’t know it yet.

This book follows Bailey, also known as Mink, who is a big film buff. She has been interacting with this boy called Alex on a forum about movies. She decides to move to California, where her dad and Alex live. She doesn’t tell Alex about her moving to his town and tries to figure out who Alex is. She also gets a summer job at a local museum where she meets Porter. Their first meeting doesn’t goes great so she hates him. Porter is snarky, annoying but has a ‘dark’ past. Little does she know that Porter and Alex might have more in common. This story is loads of fun and adorable. If you love You’ve Got Mail, you’ll love the similarities (modernized) in this book.

My pros

  • sex positive
  • modern You’ve Got Mail retelling
  • boyfriend respects his girlfriend
  • great quotes from movies
  • Californian laid back setting (sea & surfers and food)
  • diverse characters
  • amazing female friendship
  • positive family portrayal

My cons

  • The ending/reveal a little dragged out & too dramatic

= Highly recommended!

You’ve Got Mail / mini movie review

  • Comedy, drama and romance
  • 1998
  • Actors: Tom Hanks & Meg Ryan
  • 4.5/5

While reading Alex, Approximately, I realized that I had never seen You’ve Got Mail. I wanted to know their similarities so I immediately started the movie. I am by no means a movie reviewer but I really enjoyed this movie. Tom Hanks is one of my favorite actors so it was an instant hit for me. The movie goes very well with the book and I appreciated Jenn Bennet’s book even more because I saw small hints from the movies that she very well adapted to our time. The movie is about two business rivals (bookstores!) who despise each other in real life unwittingly fall in love online. The progression from hating to loving each other is so swoon worthy.

= Highly recommended!

Tales from the Shadowhunter Academy by Cassandra Clare *SPOILERS*

  • tales 5/5 stars
  • Novella bind up (after Heavenly Fire, before Lady Midnight)
  • 10 novellas
  • Authors : Cassandra Clare , Sarah Rees Brennan , Maureen Johnson and Robin Wasserman
  • YA , Fantasy

 

 

 

 

 

Spoiler review 

1.Welcome to the Shadowhunter Academy (4/5)

This first novella was a great introduction to Simon’s journey. It also introduces us to Simon’s struggles , new friends and classes (horrible teachers). This novella is great but isn’t anything special or mindblowing but I strongly encourage everyone to read on if you stopped there.

2. The Lost Herondale (4.5/5)

I am so mad that I didn’t read this novella before reading Lady Midnight. It’s so important because it contains so much backstory for the events in Lady Midnight. Simon’s struggle with his task is so frustrating to read but shows how human Simon is and not-perfect and was very refreshing because shadowhunters are always so ‘perfect’ and good at everything. When Izzy came to claim Simon and he shut her down that was so cringy to read because I knew he was going to regret it later.

3. The Whitechapel Fiend (5/5)

This is the novella that changed everything for me. It was miles above the other ones and has a lot of easter eggs for the next books that Cassandra Clare is going to write. I was ecstatic to read to see more of my favorite characters Tessa , Will & Jem and co. Their children are so cute and I just couldn’t stop fangirling because I finally saw them as parents and I couldn’t handle it. This was such a treat for TID fans. One of the best novellas!

4. Nothing but Shadows (5/5)

Simon’s amnesia was so frustrating to read again but when he stood up for “the dregs” , I found the Simon I loved so much from TMI. We get a glimps into Tessa & Will’ son life when he goes to the Shadowhunter Academy and that was by far one of the best scenes from this bind up. It’s sounds so promising for Cassie’s next series , The Last Hours. I felt so bad for Jamie , he was bullied and felt bad because he wasn’t like his father and I hope to see more of that in TLH. Matthew, Charlotte and Henry’s son was such a jerk in the beginning but slowly we peel off his layers and we really get to know him. Matthew and Jamie’ story was amazing and I can’t wait to read more from them.

5. The Evil We Love (4.5/5)

In this novella we learn about The Circle and how it all started. We follow the members from The Circle at the Shadowhunter Academy. We see how Valentine lies to everyone and manipulates them. Robert Lightwood was such a horrible person in this story. His reaction when Michael (his parabatai) told him he was in love with him was so heartbreaking to read. But we get to know Robert’s backstory and why he is so insecure. I do feel like it redeems him but it’s still not an excuse the way he treated Michael. I do think that Robert had feelings for Michael so that might be the reason why he is distant and bitter with his son Alec.

6. Pale Kings and Princes (4.5/5)

We get to know Andrew Blackthorn’s history with the Seelie Queen. That ending was such an unexpected plot twist. Helen’s story is so heartbreaking. I am so sad to see the way Helen is being treated. This novella was very sad but we get more hopeful for Simon & Izzy. The date was beautiful and I loved it! I was worried this was going to be a disaster again but Simon saved it. It gave me hope for the future.

7. Bitter of Tongue (4.5/5)

Again a novella that adds so much to Lady Midnight (The Dark Artifices). We see Mark in the Hunt (and Kieran aaaah). I am disgusted with The Clave, the way they treat Helen and Mark. They really don’t deserve this treatment and when Mark finds out that The Clave left him behind and doesn’t plan on fighting for him that was so sad. We see Helen & Aline getting married and all the Blackthorns are there. Such a bittersweet moment because we know that’s probabely the last time they get to see their big sister Helen. Overall a beautiful novella that packed a punch.

8. The Fiery Trial (3.5/5)

My least favorite novella. Simon is going through this hallucination because Magnus drugged him to see if Clary is his parabatai. The hallucination didn’t make a lot of sense and I didn’t understand what was happening until Magnus told them what he did. The parabatai hallucination/dream was a nive set up for Clary & Simon’s parabatai training.

9. Born to Endless Night (5/5)

We read from Magnus’ POV and Simon’s of course. Simon finds a baby at the Shadowhunter’s doorstep and the note attached to him was heartbreaking. The baby is of course from a demon father and human mother and so not accepted. I knew Magnus & Alec were going to adopt it and raise him as their son. I loved seeing Alec’ protective behaviour with the baby warlock. He melts and tells Magnus all of his feelings. Robert & Maryse fill immediately the roll of being grandparents. Their interactions and their acceptance with the baby was so nice to see. I loved seeing them accept Magnus and Alec together.

10. Angels Twice Descending ( 4.5/5)

A satisfing conclusion to these novella. It concluded Simon’s story and gave us a lot for the next books. Simon’ goobye to his mother was kind of strange but I understand what he did. I wished he could have kept contact with her. I loved seeing Clary and Izzy support Simon with the hard choice he has to make. We see him drink from the cup and I am so happy but the unexpected death of George was so hearbreaking ( and I felt like it was unnecessary).

 

Overall thoughts

This was such a treat to read and you get to know certain character’s story which was great. I highly recommend it!