Monthly Archives: May 2015

A Court of Thorns and Roses, by Sarah J. Maas

A Court of Thorns and Roses, by Sarah J. Maas

A Court of Thorns and Roses, by Sarah J. Maas

Feyre may be only nineteen years old, but she is an experienced hunter and the only person keeping food on the table for her sisters and her father. Life is hard, and Feyre is angry over a great many things, including over how her sisters spend the money earns them and how her father seems unable to exert any effort to benefit his children. One particularly desparate day, Feyre’s anger is instrumental in her decision to shoot and kill a large wolf, even though she suspects the unusual animal may be one of the shapeshifting, immortal fae. And indeed, it turns out that the beast is one of the fae, for shortly afterwards, a large, clearly magical beast, arrives to escort Feyre back to the magical land of the fae to serve the fae as punishment for her crime.

Once she is in the land of the fae, Feyre learns that the beast who came to claim her is also a shapeshifter named Tamlin, and in his human form, he is incredibly handsome. Tamlin’s home is beautiful, but it is clear that a cloud of doom hangs over the place. Dangerous magical creatures are invading Tamlin’s land, and Tamlin is having a harder and harder time in driving them away. Yet, when Feyre tries to find out the problem, Tamlin and his friend Lucien give her half truths and riddles in answer to her questions. On the day of one of the faes’ great fesitivals, Feyre meets Rhys, and from his veiled comments and from the events of the evening, she begins to piece together the puzzle.

Feyre only begins to glimpse the real danger before the danger comes for her. Feyre finds herself in deadly peril, at the center of a magical power struggle. And surprisingly, Feyre may be the only one who can save Tamlin, Lucien, and even enigmatic Rhys.

I love Sarah J. Maas’ Throne of Glass series, which is clearly a young adult series. This new title is steamier and darker, and should be considered a New Adult title. Ms. Maas writes compelling characters, and creates tension that moves you quickly though the story. Feyre is a strong female character, and I enjoyed her adventure. The only negative comment I can make is that Feyre reminded me very much of Celaena Sardothien from her young adult series. Both characters are angry, strong-willed young women. However, I enjoyed the story so much that I don’t really care. Ms. Maas creates vibrant fantasy worlds filled with wonderfully realized people. A very enjoyable read, and I will certainly read the next book in this series on the day it comes out.

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Pip Bartlett’s Guide to Magical Creatures, by Maggie Stiefvater and Jackson Pearce

Pip Bartlett’s Guide to Magical Creatures, by Maggie Stiefvater and Jackson Pearce

Pip Bartlett’s Guide to Magical Creatures, by Maggie Stiefvater and Jackson Pearce

Pip Bartlett is a girl who can talk to magical creatures, and they can talk to her. The problem is, no one believes that Pip has this wonderful talent. On career day at school, when Marisol Barrera’s family bring their unicorns as a part of their career day display, Pip gets a chance to use her talent, and she uses it to ask permission of a unicorn for a ride. Things go quickly awry, and career day becomes chaos day. What does Pip learn? She learns that unicorns like to be the center of attention, yes…but most importantly, she learns they are bad listeners.

After the Unicorn Incident, Pip finds herself spending the summer with her Aunt Emma, a veterinarian for magical creatures. Pip is in heaven, and soon finds herself conversing with Lilac-Horned Pomeranians, HobGrackles, and Silky Griffins.  She also meets a new friend named Tomas who is allergic to almost everything in the most interesting ways. Soon, Pip and Tomas are in a race to save the town of Cloverton from an invasion of Fuzzles. And since Fuzzles burst into flames when they are stressed and the Ms. Dreadbatch wants the Fuzzles exterminated, Pip and Tomas must find a way to save them too. Can they do it? Perhaps, with the help of some magical, wonderful creature friends.

This is a juvenile fiction title that will appeal to younger readers. The action is fast, creatures are fabulous, and there is a promise of more adventures in the future. A very fun read.

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