Pub Date: April 12 2016
Rating: 5 out of 5 stars
Thorn, an outlaw’s son, wasn’t supposed to be a slave. He’s been sold to Tyburn, an executioner, and they’re headed to Castle Gloom in Gehenna, the land of undead, where Thorn will probably be fed to a vampire.
Lilith Shadow wasn’t supposed to be ruler of Gehenna. But following the murder of her family, young Lily became the last surviving member of House Shadow, a long line of dark sorcerers. Her country is surrounded by enemies and the only way she can save it is by embracing her heritage and practicing the magic of the undead. But how can she when, as a girl, magic is forbidden to her?
Just when it looks like Lily will have to leave her home forever, Thorn arrives at Castle Gloom. A sudden death brings them together, inspires them to break the rules, and leads them to soar to new heights in this fantasy with all the sparkle and luster of a starry night sky.
I’ve been meaning to review this book for quite awhile! I read it over the summer and absolutely fell in love with it, which I should have expected because Rick Riordan blurbed it and because the person who gifted it to me told me that he thought I’d like it since I love Harry Potter.
It’s been awhile since I’ve read this book, so here are some bullet points I jotted down after finishing the book in August, mixed in with some present day comments.
- Well developed characters: If you’ve been following me for awhile you know that I love well-developed characters. Lily and Thorn were beautifully crafted characters that are unlike any others that I’ve come across. Both are young, but so wise and strong! I don’t want to give away too much, but they may be my new favorites.
- Strong and concise world building: I feel like I’m going to be using the word ‘unique’ a lot in this review because it perfectly captures the story. The world was so original and well thought out, Joshua Khan did an excellent job painting the scenes and atmosphere without info-dumping. The entire time I was reading I was completely immersed in the world.
- Interesting magic system: Once again, I don’t want to give away too much but the magic system was intricate, but easy to understand.
- YAY BATS: I don’t think I’ve ever read a book where bats had an important role, but there definitely should be more!
- Addictive and compelling writing: I vividly remember trying to go to sleep after starting this book and my mind was swirling with facts about the world, magic, and characters. Finally I gave up on sleep and tip-toed to my grandmother’s kitchen so I can finish the book without disturbing her.
- Surprisingly unique plot: With a market saturated by the same story with different characters, it was refreshing to see a middle-grade book that stood out. It’s definitely a bit darker than most kids books, but not enough to scare kids.
Pub Date: May 3rd 2016
Rating: 5 out of 5 stars
How do you punish an immortal?
By making him human.
After angering his father Zeus, the god Apollo is cast down from Olympus. Weak and disorientated, he lands in New York City as a regular teenage boy. Now, without his godly powers, the four-thousand-year-old deity must learn to survive in the modern world until he can somehow find a way to regain Zeus’s favour.
But Apollo has many enemies—gods, monsters and mortals who would love to see the former Olympian permanently destroyed. Apollo needs help, and he can think of only one place to go… an enclave of modern demigods known as Camp Half-Blood.
I always start off a new year with a Rick Riordan book because I know that it’ll be a good start to my reading year and this year was no exception.
It was a wonderful surprise to see that Uncle Rick decided to use a different writing style to share the trials of Apollo, opting to write in past tense instead of present. It was really cool to hear Apollo narrate his own life as a god stuck in a mortal’s body. Readers were able to get into Apollo’s mind and see what he truly cares about…himself! All jokes aside their was some amazing character growth in this novel that really moved me.
As expected there were a couple of cameos of some old favorite characters, but we also were able to learn more about some characters that played minor roles in past books. I loved learning more about Will and the rest of the Apollo cabin, as well as meeting Meg- a spunky demigod that carries dark secrets.
The book picks up around six months after The Blood of Olympus, the final book in Riordan’s Heroes of Olympus series. The cast of characters are dealing with the aftermath of the final battle which, of course, was not really over. (Do demigods ever catch a break?) This was a really fun read and I’m already looking forward to the sequel!