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Vicious - V.E. Schwab

N.B. This review is spoiler-free

“Plenty of humans were monstrous, and plenty of monsters knew how to play at being human.”

This was a classic case of picking a book based on its cover and I am so happy I did. When I saw the illumicrate book sleeve inspired by V.E. Schwab's Vicious I just knew I had to check this book out because it must have the best cover. When I saw it and read the blurb, that was it; I bought it and read it and here we are. I discovered a new favourite mostly by accident.

"Victor and Eli started out as college roommates—brilliant, arrogant, lonely boys who recognized the same sharpness and ambition in each other. In their senior year, a shared research interest in adrenaline, near-death experiences, and seemingly supernatural events reveals an intriguing possibility: that under the right conditions, someone could develop extraordinary abilities. But when their thesis moves from the academic to the experimental, things go horribly wrong. 

Ten years later, Victor breaks out of prison, determined to catch up to his old friend (now foe), aided by a young girl whose reserved nature obscures a stunning ability. Meanwhile, Eli is on a mission to eradicate every other super-powered person that he can find—aside from his sidekick, an enigmatic woman with an unbreakable will. Armed with terrible power on both sides, driven by the memory of betrayal and loss, the arch-nemeses have set a course for revenge—but who will be left alive at the end?"

Unpopular Opinions Book Tag

Created by The Book Archer on YouTube, I have seen this tag floating around for a while and decided I want to give it a go. I might be a bit late to the party but oh well, I like doing tags I haven't been tagged in so it's all good! Without further ado let's go!

5 of my must-buy authors

I read a lot of books every year which means I read lots of different authors every year, but of course, there are still some authors that stand out more than others. Over time I've got to know what kind of book is really going to get me excited, and which authors will never fail to disappoint. There are quite a few authors I consider must-buys, but today I thought I'd tell you about my top 5. These are authors I hope to one day read all the works of, and will always be hyped to read their new releases.

A Curse So Dark and Lonely - Brigid Kemmerer

N.B. This review is spoiler-free

“I am always surprised to discover that when the world seems darkest, there exists the greatest opportunity for light.”

When FairyLoot announced the Beauty and the Beast theme, I knew straight away which book we were going to get. I was kind of glad when I realised I was going to receive A Curse So Dark and Lonely because I had heard lots of people raving about it but I don't think I ever would have picked it for myself. It is a modern fantasy retelling of Beauty and the Beast with some twists, which whilst interesting is not something I'd instantly think I'd like. But hey I was wrong!

"Fall in love, break the curse.

It once seemed so easy to Prince Rhen, the heir to Emberfall. Cursed by a powerful enchantress to repeat the autumn of his eighteenth year over and over, he knew he could be saved if a girl fell for him. But that was before he learned that at the end of each autumn, he would turn into a vicious beast hell-bent on destruction. That was before he destroyed his castle, his family, and every last shred of hope.

Nothing has ever been easy for Harper Lacy. With her father long gone, her mother dying, and her brother barely holding their family together while constantly underestimating her because of her cerebral palsy, she learned to be tough enough to survive. But when she tries to save someone else on the streets of Washington, DC, she’s instead somehow sucked into Rhen’s cursed world.

Break the curse, save the kingdom.

A prince? A monster? A curse? Harper doesn’t know where she is or what to believe. But as she spends time with Rhen in this enchanted land, she begins to understand what’s at stake. And as Rhen realizes Harper is not just another girl to charm, his hope comes flooding back. But powerful forces are standing against Emberfall . . . and it will take more than a broken curse to save Harper, Rhen, and his people from utter ruin."

You Know Me Well - Nina LaCour and David Levithan

N.B. This review is spoiler-free

“The heart is a treacherous beast, but it means well.”

I've owned this book for a while now, so long I don't actually remember how I came to own it! I decided to read it thanks to my new tactic of pulling books out of a jar and I'm really glad I did. I liked it a heck of a lot more than I was expecting to and that was really lovely. You Know Me Well by Nina LaCour and David Levithan is such a refreshing, honest read that I really enjoyed.

"Who knows you well? Your best friend? Your boyfriend or girlfriend? A stranger you meet on a crazy night? No one, really?

Mark and Kate have sat next to each other for an entire year, but have never spoken. For whatever reason, their paths outside of class have never crossed.

That is, until Kate spots Mark miles away from home, out in the city for a wild, unexpected night. Kate is lost, having just run away from a chance to finally meet the girl she has been in love with from afar. Mark, meanwhile, is in love with his best friend Ryan, who may or may not feel the same way.

When Kate and Mark meet up, little do they know how important they will become to each other—and how, in a very short time, they will know each other better than any of the people who are supposed to know them more."

NEWTs Magical Readathon TBR

Tomorrow marks the start of the NEWTs stage of Book Roast's Magical Readathon. It runs from 1st - 31st August and this will be my first year participating! Every year there are OWLs and and NEWTs, this year a career guide was also introduced. The idea is that you choose a career to pursue and complete the OWL and NEWT requirements for it. By the end of the NEWTs I completed the requirements to become both a Magizoologist and Wand Maker with the intention of choosing one when it came to the NEWTs.

So, what did I choose, I hear you ask? As much as I'd love to be a Magizoologist, my heart settled in Wand Maker and I'm actually pretty happy with that choice. To be able to become a wand maker I need an O in herbology, E in care of magical creatures and A in charms. To get a higher grade, I have to complete the challenge for all the grades below it which means I have six books to read. Of course they all have prompts so here they are:

Obsidio - Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff

N.B. This review contains spoilers for Illuminae and Gemina

“I am not good. Nor am I evil. I am no hero. Nor am I villain. I am AIDAN.” 

Yes I love this series, its officially my favourite series and I won't stop raving about it. Obsidio is the final book in the Illuminae Files trilogy and it was the epic conclusion that was just EVERYTHING. Honestly this has got to be a rare example where not a single book in this series was a disappointment and I am so excited. It truly seems like Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff can do no wrong with this series.

"Kady, Ezra, Hanna, and Nik narrowly escaped with their lives from the attacks on Heimdall station and now find themselves crammed with 2,000 refugees on the container ship, Mao. With the jump station destroyed and their resources scarce, the only option is to return to Kerenza—but who knows what they'll find seven months after the invasion? 

Meanwhile, Kady's cousin, Asha, survived the initial BeiTech assault and has joined Kerenza's ragtag underground resistance. When Rhys—an old flame from Asha's past—reappears on Kerenza, the two find themselves on opposite sides of the conflict. 

With time running out, a final battle will be waged on land and in space, heroes will fall, and hearts will be broken."