#Review: These Broken Stars by Amie Kaufman and Meagan Spooner #YAFantasy #SciFi #Dystopian

So, this whole lockdown thing has got me going a little squirrelly lately, and as a result I’ve been craving a little escapism by way of some delicious YA fantasy. Enter These Broken Stars by Amie Kaufman and Meagan Spooner. Jam packed with a surprisingly capable heiress, a dashing war hero, some serious corporate shenanigans, an intergalactic disaster, and a crash landing on an abandoned planet and you have the recipe for a dang good time. Reader, let me tell you, it was just what I needed.


13138635Title: These Broken Stars

Series Title: Starbound

Author: Amie Kaufman and Meagan Spooner

Publisher: Disney Hyperion

Publication Date: December 10, 2013

Genre: YA, Fantasy, Science Fiction, Dystopian, Romance

Themes: Survival, Romance, Family, Corporatism, Colonial Enterprises

Features: N/A


My Rating: 4/ 5


Synopsis

From Goodreads…

It’s a night like any other on board the Icarus. Then, catastrophe strikes: the massive luxury spaceliner is yanked out of hyperspace and plummets into the nearest planet. Lilac LaRoux and Tarver Merendsen survive. And they seem to be alone.

Lilac is the daughter of the richest man in the universe. Tarver comes from nothing, a young war hero who learned long ago that girls like Lilac are more trouble than they’re worth. But with only each other to rely on, Lilac and Tarver must work together, making a tortuous journey across the eerie, deserted terrain to seek help.

Then, against all odds, Lilac and Tarver find a strange blessing in the tragedy that has thrown them into each other’s arms. Without the hope of a future together in their own world, they begin to wonder—would they be better off staying here forever?

Everything changes when they uncover the truth behind the chilling whispers that haunt their every step. Lilac and Tarver may find a way off this planet. But they won’t be the same people who landed on it.

Purchase Links

Canada: https://amzn.to/2EkQKEL

U.K.: https://amzn.to/2YspJWY

U.S.A.: https://amzn.to/32mfIMb

As an Amazon Associate I may earn from qualifying purchases.


My Review

Okay, let me start off by saying that this wasn’t the deepest book that I have ever read, with more of a focus on romance and character development than the action and critical analysis of social issues that I’ve come to expect since reading The Illuminae Files. But, these are very different books with, I imagine, very different audiences. That’s not to say that there isn’t any social analysis, just that it’s secondary to some of the other elements.

I actually really enjoyed the discussion surrounding class-stratified society and corporate greed, and felt that it did a really good job of establishing the tensions between Lilac and Tarver. It served as an excellent vehicle through which to create complicated and compelling characters that both embodied and defied their stereotypes, as well as adding excitement and interest to the storyline. The poor soldier boy and the little rich girl is not a new story, but it’s one that never seems to get old regardless of genre.

Despite some initial misgivings, I ended up warming to Lilac’s character – especially her internal conflict. She is a girl who wants desperately to be free of her father and the expectations of her set by society, yet she also expects to be taken care of and catered to by everyone se encounters. But what I loved more than anything, was how this pampered princess had acquired some menial skills so far beyond the repertoire of the average society girl. Sure, Lilac can navigate a ship in stiletto heels and emotionally destroy any possible suitor with a few well formed words, but she can also wire just about anything with more skill than a maintenance crew. If this book suggests to anyone that you can be a girly-girl AND rock some serious practical skills, I’m all for it because these concepts aren’t mutually exclusive. Sure, there were a few times I wanted to shout ‘girl, NO!’ at Lilac for being spoiled and ridiculous (seriously, who tries to cross a mountain range in the aforementioned stilettos?), but her grit and determination eventually won me over.

The Major, on the other hand, took absolutely no warming up to. I was on his side from those first few pages where he was uncomfortable at yet another first-class party. He hates the pretension and posing for pictures, hated feeling like a thing to be put on show like a novelty – I knew then that Tarver would be the character to carry me through the book. I adored his tough-love approach to coaxing Lilac through her first experience in the wild, how the Major treated her like a green soldier rather than a corporate princess, and especially how he planed from Lilac’s needs but still had the compassion to wait for her to voice those needs before preferring any help. Oh, and did I mention that Tarver’s a poet? Soft boy, strong boy – consider me sold!

Both of the characters have beautifully complicated pasts and emotional wounds that make them extremely compelling. Both of their emotional emotional and physical journeys are well placed and carefully crafted. They’re just two kids ripped from their journey through space, who crash landed on an abandoned planet inhabited by spectres, trying to get back to any form of civilization. What could wrong? I enjoyed following along as they grew both more vulnerable and more capable as the days passed by. Their challenges are not small, and each victory is hard wan. What starts out as a superficial YA space-romance draws you in and tricks you into getting lost in a carefully wrought world that promises so much more to come.

Would I recommend this book? Yup! It was an absolute joy to read and I can’t wait to dive into This Shattered World the next time these COVID restrictions start to get me down.

#ARC #Review: To Best The Boys by Mary Weber #YALit #Dystopian #Fantasy

Today’s review is for To Best The Boys by Mary Weber. Don’t let the short page count fool you, because there is an absolute ton packed into this baby including deep discussions of class stratified societies and gender roles. And despite this all, it never feels like an overwhelming or heavy read as we follow a plucky heroine on her journey to find a cure, love, and higher education. Beautifully imagined and expertly written, To Best The Boys is Coco Channel meets The Maze Runner, and it’s an absolute must read!


bestTitle: To Best The Boys

Author: Mary Weber

Publisher: Thomas Nelson

Publication Date: March 5, 2019

Genre: Fiction, YA, Fantasy, Dystopian

Themes: Family, Friendship, Survival,

Features: N/A


My Rating: 4.5/ 5


Synopsis

From Goodreads…

Every year for the past fifty-four years, the residents of Pinsbury Port receive a mysterious letter inviting all eligible-aged boys to compete for an esteemed scholarship to the all-male Stemwick University. Every year, the poorer residents look to see that their names are on the list. The wealthier look to see how likely their sons are to survive. And Rhen Tellur opens it to see if she can derive which substances the ink and parchment are created from, using her father’s microscope.

In the province of Caldon, where women are trained in wifely duties and men are encouraged into collegiate education, sixteen-year-old Rhen Tellur wants nothing more than to become a scientist. As the poor of her seaside town fall prey to a deadly disease, she and her father work desperately to find a cure. But when her Mum succumbs to it as well? Rhen decides to take the future into her own hands—through the annual all-male scholarship competition.

With her cousin, Seleni, by her side, the girls don disguises and enter Mr. Holm’s labyrinth, to best the boys and claim the scholarship prize. Except not everyone’s ready for a girl who doesn’t know her place. And not everyone survives the maze.


My Review

A lot of this book will feel familiar to readers: There are two distinct classes, uppers and lowers (I’m sure you can figure that one out), that makes achieving valuable social change difficult; then there’s rigid and firmly entrenched gender roles, where the men and boys get educations and the women and girls tend to the home – any one who breaks from this pattern is seen as a rebel who needs to be tamed; and then there’s he whole dystopian survive the contest trope. But guess what, these things are familiar because they work, and in To Best The Boys they work incredibly well together.

We’re brought into a society where courtship is formalized, exposed ankles are scandalous, and walking home with the wrong fellow can ruin your reputation. Enter Rhen Tellur – she’s bright, driven, irreverent and against all odds an absolutely brilliant scientist. She’s not afraid of getting her hands dirty, or even covered in the effluence of a dead body, she’s determined to find a cure for the crippling disease that’s making it’s way through the Lower community in Pinsbury Port – especially since the Uppers only seem to care about their parties, pastries, and stationary choices.

Matters are complicated but the fact that Rhen belongs to both worlds – her mother was once an Upper who lost her standing when she married a brilliant (but Lower) alchemist.  As a result, Rhen must divide her time on either side of the river attending Upper parties with her cousin Seleni only to return home to the working class community in which she lives to run experiments with her father in their basement laboratory. Why the duality when Rhen could easily accept what’s offered from the Uppers? He mother has been hit with Crippling Disease.

Oh, and lets just make things a little more complicated – brilliant though she may be, the last hope of the lowers, she’s also dyslexic.

Cue the moment of awakening where the next Katniss/ Tris/ Eowyn is born. Rhen boldly says the ‘hull’ with it all and enters an all-boys competition to win an education and hopefully save her mother. And let’s be honest here, I fell for this story hook, line and sinker (fishing pun and reference to lover-boy Lute fully intended). I can’t say too much more about the plot without risking spoilers other than Rhen’s time in the maze is fast paced, exhilarating, and utterly amazing.

The supporting characters are wonderful as well – Beryll with his constant screams and disapproval, Seleni with her unwavering commitment to supporting the ones she loves, Vincent with his ridiculous ego unbearable condescension, and Lute with his brooding and unpredictable moods. Now add in a healthy dose of magic, ghouls in the mist, sirens out at sea, and a parliament that only serves the rich and you have the perfect recipe for a smashing read.

The only reason why this baby didn’t land a 5* review is that some of the bigger issues, such as gender disparity, are too often and too obviously stated. I think that the story itself was strong enough to cary this message without being outright, and the constant reminders almost devalues the intelligence of the reader when it comes to drawing conclusions and making connections. Don’t get me wrong, my feminist heart is rejoicing after reading this sucker, I’m just someone that believes in the power of a whisper over that of a shout.

Regardless, would I recommend this book? Absolutely! It’s fun, thoughtful, challenging, and surprisingly sensitive with regards to it’s diverse and special needs characters in a way that dystopian literature often is not. To Best The Boys is a thrilling read, and I can only hope to see more of Rhen, Lute, Seleni, and Beryll in the future.


Many thanks to NetGalley for providing a Advanced Reader Copy in exchange for an honest review. 

#BlogTour #Review: Splinter by Joshua Winning @SentinelTrilogy @JoshWinning #YALit #Fantasy

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Today I am delighted to take part in the blog tour for the final instalment of Josh Winning’s YA Sentinel Trilogy, Splinter. Truth be told I wasn’t sure where this series would go after the dramatic conclusion of Ruins, but I knew that the ending was going to be big, and that it simply couldn’t be anything other than epic. Not only were my expectations met, but they were categorically crushed in the best way possible. Full of twists and turns, stark realism and fantastical imagination, with a touch or heartbreak and undercurrents of hope, this baby will leave you craving more.


Synopsis

hHnO1d4g.png‘All who stand against us shall perish’

The critically acclaimed Sentinel Trilogy comes to a thrilling conclusion in this final instalment of the dark fantasy series.

The world is falling apart around Nicholas Hallow. Amid rumours that the Dark Prophets have returned, a deathly gloom pollutes England, unleashing a savage hoard of nightmare creatures. Fighting the tide of evil, Nicholas returns home to Cambridge, where an old ally helps him seek out the mysterious Skurkwife, who could help Nicholas stop Malika and the Prophets for good.

Meanwhile, Sam Wilkins unites the Sentinels against the forces of darkness, but with Jessica’s sanity slipping, and Isabel suspicious of her shadowy past, it’s a battle that could cost the Sentinels everything.

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Sentinel  and  Ruins,  the  first  two  books  in  The  Sentinel  Trilogy,  are  currently  just 99p  on  Kindle   https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/bookseries/B00YSRBVYU/

Splinter  is  out  now  https://www.amazon.co.uk/Splinter-Book-Three-Sentinel-Trilogy/dp/1911382853/


My Rating: 5/ 5


Review 

There’s nothing like the apocalypse to bring about an action packed story of survival in the face of harrowing odds. And even though Nicholas Hallow has been fighting the same world-ending enemy for three books now, Splinter manages to stay fresh and exciting in a way that will leave you wanting more. Every question and loose end from the previous two instalments are given closure, characters with gaps become painfully whole, and the mystery of Nicholas Hallow’s incredible birth is finally unveiled. Helped along by old friends like Sam and Isabel, and new allies such as Rae, Dawn and Merlyn, it is impossible not to root for Nicholas as he embarks on the final leg of this seemingly impossible quest.

The best part is that despite being told from multiple perspectives and covering a vast array of storylines, Winning succeeds in sticking to a shorter and less intimidating length. I have always loved that this trilogy is visually ‘do-able’ when seen on the shelf by all levels of YA readers, so it’s wonderful that the finale is in the same approachable size. The vocabulary too, remains accessible without being overly simple, marking this as a book that can be enjoyed by YA readers and adults alike. The writing is emotive and imaginative with just enough colour to paint a picture of events, but not so much description as to bore you to death. I loved the vocabularies associated with each character, their moods, and personalities – these really helped to give a sense who/ what/ and why a person was a certain way, but left enough to the imagination to be surprised by events along the way.

Perhaps my favourite story arc was that of Jessica and Isabel. Two guardians of the Trinity tied together by a horrible history, both faced with impossible choices and holding immeasurable power. I was touched by how much Isabel cared for Jessica despite it all, and even more so by the choices that Jessica had to make in the moments and centuries that followed. I definitely wasn’t expecting Jessica’s connection to the Malika storyline, but once it was out in the open everything just seemed to fall into place.   It really drove home the concept that sometimes choice is an illusion, and that sacrifices really do have to be made for the common good despite immeasurable personal loss.

I also adored the growing camaraderie and tensions between Nicholas, Rae, and Dawn. It was fun to be a fly on the wall to witness their group dynamics with the added bonus of being presented candid and private private moments that informed upon motives and demonstrated growth. More so than in Ruins, I began to get a sense for these characters as individuals beyond their circumstances, and I loved the sarcasm and wit that permeated their personalities. It was fun to watch Dawn come out of her shell, Rae let down her guard, and Nicholas to give a little of the control and self importance that comes with being the chosen one. Oh, and on that note, I was totally not expecting that ending! With our trio of happy heroes so closely mirroring the composition of the Trinity, I was definitely expecting some sort of happy transformation that saved the day – you won’t get any spoilers from me here, but I can assure you right now that this not going to turn out how you think!

The touches of romance were sweet throughout, and much needed given the gravity of situations being faced. And once again my radar was way off course when it came to Nicholas thinking that he might have a bit of spark for Dawn (wrong again!), but was pleasantly surprised with the character that captures his heart. I appreciated the LGBTQ aspects, especially since they were presented in such a normal, healthy, unassuming way. Too often diverse reads go out of their way to be special, but Splinter is outstanding thanks to it’s understated and honest representations of emotional attachments and first loves.

In this stunning conclusion to the Sentinel Trilogy Winning pulls together the disparate threads of carefully crafted tale and intrigue laid out in Sentinel and Ruins and presents the perfect ending to an action packed saga. Even though Nicholas, Rae and Dawn are fighting demons around every corner there’s still plenty of time for character development and emotional growth. You can’t help but finding a few plucky sentinels and satellite characters to latch on to as their background come to the forefront, but in true Sentinel style – don’t get too attached to your favourite characters! This is the apocalypse after all, and you never know what’s lurking around the corner.

Would I recommend this book? Hell, I’d happily position myself as an ardent advocate for the whole dang series! Splinter is timely, irreverent, and down right entertaining – as are Sentinel and Ruins. This is the kind of book that can be appreciated by causal readers, fantasy addicts, and lovers of YA alike. Buy it, borrow it, find some way to get your hands on it, because this is one summer read that was definitely worth the wait!


Author Information

tmD8l7QAJoshua Winning is an author and film journalist who writes for TOTAL FILM, SFX, GAY TIMES and RADIO TIMES. He has been on set with Kermit the Frog, devoured breakfast with zombies on The Walking Dead, and sat on the Iron Throne while visiting the Game Of Thrones set in Dublin. Jeff Goldblum once told him he looks a bit like Paul Bettany.

In 2018, Joshua’s YA thriller VICIOUS RUMER was published by Unbound. His dark fantasy series THE SENTINEL TRILOGY was published by Peridot Press, and he also co-wrote ’80s teen horror CAMP CARNAGE. In 2015, Joshua’s short story DEAD AIR appeared in SPEAK MY LANGUAGE: AN ANTHOLOGY OF GAY FICTION.


Many thanks to Josh Winning for leading me down the rabbit hole with this trilogy, and for providing copies of all three books in exchange for honest reviews.

#Review: The Vault of Dreamers by Caragh M. O’Brien #YA #ScienceFiction

Look! A review… finally!

I know, I know, I have been far too quiet lately. But, it’s been one heck of an adjustment with the new job and being on a computer almost all day that I’ve had a hard time sitting down in the evenings to write reviews. So today I am delighted to present my 5 star review The Vault of Dreamers by Caragh M. O’Brien, and absolutely gripping YA read!


dreamerTitle: The Vault of Dreamers

AuthorCaragh M. O’Brien

Publisher: Roaring Book Press

Publication Date: September 16, 2014

Genre: Fiction, YA, Science Fiction, Dystopian Fiction, YA Romance

Themes: Family, Friendship, Boarding School, Reality TV, Medical Testing, Consent Romance

Features: N/A


My Rating: 5/ 5


Synopsis

From Goodreads…

WELCOME TO THE PRESTIGIOUS Forge School of the Arts, where every waking moment of the students’ lives is televised. For twelve hours a day, every class, conversation, and gesture is broadcast to millions of viewers. And for twelve hours each night, the students undergo an induced sleep, proven to maximize creativity.

Rosie Sinclair has staked all her dreams of becoming a filmmaker on succeeding at Forge. But when she skips her sleeping pill one night, she discovers an insidious world behind the cameras. As she navigates the Forge landscape of art and manipulation by day, Rosie finds it increasingly difficult to trust either her instincts or her mind. The only thing she knows for certain is that she must unearth the ghastly secret that the Forge School is hiding.

From the author of the Birthmarked Trilogy comes a fast-paced, psychologically thrilling novel about what happens when the dreams you follow are no longer your own.


My Review

Where do I begin with this book? Normally I would say something like ‘this might listed as YA, but can be enjoyed by all.’ And while that might be true, straight up this is some seriously kick ass YA lit! I shouldn’t have expected anything less from Caragh M. O’Brien as I adored the Birthmarked trilogy, but with The Vault of Dreamers I was completely blown away.

The whole concept of high school as reality TV, 24 hour monitoring, advanced arts school had me hooked from the blurb. In all honesty, it sounded exactly like the kind of school that I would have applied to as teen and I simply couldn’t stay away. The execution of the concept far exceeded my expectations, so much so that I have already gone out and purchased the other two books in the trilogy! But more than anything, I loved how O’Brien balanced relevant and contemporary issues with page-gripping fiction. These included the high suicide rates of contestants, discussions on bodily autonomy, consent, poverty, abuse and so much more.

The Round of 50 cuts was something that I found to be particularly brutal. I couldn’t imagine having my entire future determined by public opinion and yet it seems to be something we crave as a society. It hurt to see Rosie’s good intentions used as ammunition against her, but it hurt even more to see the impact that constant public scrutiny can have on a person. And while the majority of teens won’t be on nationally televised reality shows, the constant pressure of social media combined with the drama of high school is sure to be relatable. Huge props to O’Brien for tackling the persistent issues of high suicide rates amongst former reality TV contestants, I can only hope that works like this get people thinking, or better yet, get them talking.

I really appreciated how the romantic aspects of this story were handled as well. The fire was there, but in an innocent almost toned down way that left the focus squarely on the interpersonal dramas and the psychological warfare being waged. Don’t get me wrong, I loved the whole Rosie/ Linus storyline, but it was subtle enough and healthy enough of a relationship that it didn’t inspire any rage (which is rare for me, as I normally hate romance in teens novels for many, unrealistic reasons).

And the mind games! SO WELL WRITTEN. Take note my friends, I don’t use all caps often. But the way in which everything presented felt so real, and the gaslighting got me so wrapped up that I too began questioning whether or not Rosie was dreaming for some of the more fantastical elements and whether or not all of her breakthrough ideas were truly her own. But in the face of all it, I adored how Rosie stayed strong and convicted in spite of the challenges thrown her way.

I got lost in the sense of fear, of game play, and of the all-encompassing politics as the story progressed. And even though Rosie gathered herself quite the team to help her through, she is a fierce female character who plays one hell of a game. I appreciated her strength and tenacity, her dedication to her family, and her unwavering commitment to finding the truth even when it looked like she had been completely beat.

My only complaint was that I felt there were some threads of the story left that weren’t wrapped up at the end, like whatever happened to Linus and Burnham. But this was just the first book in a trilogy and there had to be something juicy enough to pull you along into the next instalment right? And let’s not forget what happened to Rosie! I’ll avoid spoilers here, but if you’ve read the blurbs for the other books chances are good you have an idea. But that final chapter! Oh man, I just had to know where she went and how.

Altogether this was a fun, engaging, and well written story that is sure to grip the attention. Sure, Rosie’s a little on the teenaged girl mindset, but her behaviour is right in line with her age and situation. Honestly, I liked that she wasn’t mature beyond her years but know that some might find her annoying. Regardless, this is one of my favourite reads of the year because it had it all – drama, suspense, romance, and intrigue. Would I recommend it? Oh hells yes!

Now pardon me while I disappear again to read the rest of the series.


 

Early #Review: Zero Repeat Forever by G. S. Prendergast

I am in love! With many things actually, but right now I am in love with this book. Not only is it well written, exciting, and full of little plot twists it also happens to take place in Canada. And not just anywhere in Canada, but in my hometown of Calgary and my beloved Rockies. Be still my red, white and maple syrup heart! Seriously though, this is one of the best dystopian YA novels I have read in a good long while, and this is one series I will be following to the end.



zeroTitle:
Zero Repeat Forever

Author: G. S. Prendergast

Publisher: Simon & Schuster

Expected Publication Date: 29 August, 2017

Genre: Fiction, Literary Fiction, Teens & YA

Themes: Friendship, Dystopian Futures, Aliens, Survival

Features: N/A


My Rating: 5/ 5


Synopsis

From Goodreads…

He has no voice, or name, only a rank, Eighth. He doesn’t know the details of the mission, only the directives that hum in his mind.

Dart the humans. Leave them where they fall.

His job is to protect his Offside. Let her do the shooting.

Until a human kills her…

Sixteen year-old Raven is at summer camp when the terrifying armored Nahx invade, annihilating entire cities, taking control of the Earth. Isolated in the wilderness, Raven and her friends have only a fragment of instruction from the human resistance.

Shelter in place.

Which seems like good advice at first. Stay put. Await rescue. Raven doesn’t like feeling helpless but what choice does she have?

Then a Nahx kills her boyfriend.

Thrown together in a violent, unfamiliar world, Eighth and Raven should feel only hate and fear. But when Raven is injured, and Eighth deserts his unit, their survival comes to depend on trusting each other…


My Review

I’ll start this review by getting my Canadian fan-girl antics out of the way once and for all, and then hopefully I can be a little bit more serious.

It was a wonderful feeling to read a book that not only featured Canadian cities and landmarks, but one that was written by an author that obviously knew these landmarks well enough to make fun of them. Like calling Banff the touristy ‘whatchacallit’ and calling the Saddledome a stadium – a joke not lost on Calgarians who will insist that it is not a stadium but an arena. And I’m not sure if it was meant to be a joke, but suggesting that one might walk from the Saddledome to the edge of town in half an hour, one hour tops – HA! Not even in a vehicle on clear roads with top speed limits could that be managed with our creeping urban sprawl issues. But the best little Canadianism slipped in there (aside from Raven calling out August’s constant apologizing), the inclusion of Alberta’s super-awesome Cold War bomb bunkers in the Rockies. Yep – they’re real! And yep, this blogger may have spent a few teenaged delinquent weekends in these tunnels whilst her parents thought she was camping! #sorrynotsorry

But on to the real meat and potatoes of the book. It was so dang good. I loved the alternating perspectives between Raven and August, especially as August’s segments tended to give away bit by bit where the story was going and why. I enjoyed his self deprecating humour, the knowledge that he was fundamentally flawed, and his determination to not let his origins dominate the course of his future. Through Raven I really got a sense of talking stock of life, and acknowledging what’s really important when you’re facing the end of the world. I was immediately and immensely sympathetic towards both characters, and I never thought that I would say that about any character that was an invading zombie-alien.

Lets also touch on the insane amount of diversity in the book. When it comes to ethnicity nearly the whole gambit is represented, and not in the diversity-gets-you-dead way that I’m used to seeing. And, a big shout out for including recognition of our First Nations and Metis communities and a sneaky discussion on the language that is often used to discuss them – way to call out negativity and discrimination in a firm yet gentle way! Along with ethnicity we also see diversity in abilities, character qualities, and sexual orientation and  it never seems forced. Without a doubt this is one of the most diverse and inclusive novels that I have read in long time.

As the start to a new series, I have to say that this is an excellent foundation. There are so many plot lines that can be followed, all of the characters have been flushed out in ways that make them realistic and give them depth, and there are so many routes that will lead to some exciting future novels. And what about that ending?! I was floored. Absolutely floored! I wanted the next book right away, and the wait for it to come out is going to be absolutely painful.

Would I recommend this book, a hands down yes! It will come with the warning though that it might not be ideal for younger or more immature readers as it is rife with sex, drugs, and profanity (and I like it that way!). The important thing to note on this one is that these elements are all age appropriate for both the characters represented and the intended audience. For those looking for a fun read and series to get hyped up about, this is it. And for those looking to build out their YA collection AND get a little bit of Canadian content on the shelves, don’t shy away as this baby is worth it’s weight in gold.


Many thanks to G. S. Prendergast and Simon & Schuster Canada for providing an advanced copy via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.