Arc Review: Pastel Pink (Zadok #1) by Nikki Minty

Title: Pastel Pink (Zadok #1)
Author: Nikki Minty
Genre: YA Fantasy / Sci-fi
Publication Date: April 15th, 2021
Publisher: Self-Published
Rating: 2 stars

Thank you to BooksGoSocial and Netgalley for an earc to read in exchange for a review!





“From one ending comes a new beginning…
Ruby was murdered on Earth eighteen years ago and reincarnated on Zadok as a Pastel Zeek named Harlow. To be born at the bottom of her race’s caste colour system to a middle-class family of Magentas has made Harlow a source of conflict amongst the ruling Purples, and a source of derision from all three colours.
When Harlow is attacked by a fuegor on Zadok, the effects of its slow reacting venom triggers an unforeseen phenomenon, and due to the strong connection she had with her former twin sister Jade, her human spirit is unexpectedly drawn back to Earth.
Now living a double life, she has plunged into a world of intrigue on both planets.

On earth, she watches on in horror as Jade reconnects with Lucas, the man who murdered her and got away with it. And to complicate things further, she’s being pursued by Alex, the ghost of Lucas’ twin. On Zadok, she becomes embroiled with Jax, the son of the Commanding family. He’s determined to bring about change to the colony’s colour system, but it’ll come at a cost.

As Harlow mixes with the political intrigue of the Zeeks, will she become a victim of those trying to rigidly maintain the status quo or will she usher in a revolution?
And will ghost Ruby resist the temptation of the handsome Alex or pursue an impossible relationship that could have dire consequences on both planets?” (Goodreads)

I always like to try indie books because sometimes they really surprise me and I find new authors to enjoy. I was looking forward to this one after seeing it as a “read now” on Netgalley. Plus, the cover is just so pretty! I really like the colors and it’s eye-catching.

For the first 18%, I was enjoying what I was reading. The writing was good and there were different plot points that kept me engaged. Nothing really stood out to me until the colors of the characters skins became more of an issue and different distinctions shot up red flags.

I did run these things by others to make sure I wasn’t jumping to conclusions and others saw the same issues I did. As someone mentioned, this could have not been beta read and since the author is from Australia that may also be a reason. I’m not sure but let’s just get into the discussion.

In the second chapter, we are introduced to Harlow who is a Pastel. In her region of the planet there is a construct for the different colors of skin. The top is Purple, middle is Magenta, and Pastel is at the bottom. Each one has a different job/task based on their color. Pastels are seen as weak and useless. Sometimes they are born blind or lose their sight.

Again nothing occurred to me until a Purple, the commander’s son, started talking about how these people shouldn’t be segregated as right now they are separated by the different colors. He wants to change it while others, his mother included, do not want to. This just seemed oddly similar to our own history in America. Another thing that added to this point is when there is a comic and words in illustrations that say, “No Pastels Allowed.”.

There was also a passage that talked about how the men wear their hair and that they would have dreadlocks or cornrows. She also made sure to mention that Zavier, a Pastel, had a tangled mess instead of the other two hairstyles. Both of those hairstyles are usually linked to the black community. Later on in the book, the author describes a character of being, “…tall powerful physique of a female basketball player from the human world–only curvier, sexier.” Before that she mentioned that this character has muscular thighs. If I remember correctly, this character was a Purple so she was at the top.

On this planet there are also other groups of people living, one being the vallon. They are described as having red skin. A few passages about them did remind me of Native Americans. One of those reasonings being the color of their skin and they are also mentioned as riding horses, raiding colonies, and stealing young pastel girls. They also come from the desert and Harlow described them as being jealous of her colony having all the best resources.

There are other passages that made me feel uneasy about the chosen color system for these characters but I don’t want this review to be too long. I will say that at least there was talk about being one race and wanting unity but it still left a bad taste. I’m just not sure what the intentions behind it all were.

As for the rest of the book, I did like the writing. There is violence in this book and it does start off with it. It’s definitely what kept me interested in reading. The two timelines come from Harlow and her as Ruby’s ghost. There is also two point-of-views. All of this can be overwhelming at times as it doesn’t leave too much room for explaining the world-building better as we are thrown from one place to the next.

When it came to the world-building, I was a bit confused. On the planet that Harlow lives there is modern conveniences like a hospital and café but they also do jobs as hunters and gatherers. They even trade for supplies. They also don’t live in modern homes as their dwelling place is in caverns. I’m not really sure exactly how all of this goes together and I just had a really hard time trying to imagine it all in my head.

Another thing about the world-building is that animals, or monsters as I’m not sure, were never described and neither was some of the different words used by the people. One phrase being, “…the deeper the pigment, the bigger the whingers.” This was used to describe those complaining at the café. This could also be seen as another point to the above when it comes to race.

The only other thing I want to mention is the character of Alex. I liked him at the beginning but by the end I hated him. He was literally giving his brother a free pass when it came to murder and wanting to murder other people because of his childhood. It just wasn’t good.

Overall, this started out strong but quickly took a turn that left me feeling uncomfortable with the color system of this book. Although there were a few interesting plot points, I can’t say that I would recommend this book or that I will be continuing on with this series.

Audiobook Review: Nyxia Unleashed (The Nyxia Triad #2) by Scott Reintgen

Title: Nyxia Unleashed (The Nyxia Triad #2)
Author: Scott Reintgen
Genre: YA Sci-fi
Publication Date: July 17th, 2018
Publisher: Crown Books for Young Readers
Rating: 3.5 stars

Getting to Eden brought Emmett and his crewmates one step closer to their promised fortune. But surviving Eden may be the biggest reward of all.

Emmett Atwater thought Babel’s game sounded easy. Get points. Get paid. Go home. But it didn’t take long for him to learn that Babel’s competition was full of broken promises, none darker or more damaging than the last one.

Now Emmett and the rest of the Genesis survivors must rally and forge their own path through a new world. Their mission from Babel is simple: extract nyxia, the most valuable material in the universe, and play nice with the indigenous Adamite population.

But Emmett and the others quickly realize they are caught between two powerful forces—Babel and the Adamites—with clashing desires. Will the Genesis team make it out alive before it’s too late?” (Goodreads)

After liking the first book (although not a lot), I decided to continue on to the second as the cliffhanger of the last chapter had me intrigued about the continuation of the plot. As I mentioned previously in my review for the first, there isn’t anything groundbreaking about the plot when it comes to YA Sci-fi. I feel like its very surface level and even though the plot twists can be a bit shocking, everything else still remains quite average.

The sequel begins where the first book leaves off. Emmett is caught between a rock and a hard place due to the last situation he found himself in but he is still holding on to the promises of Babel.

I still haven’t fully connected to any of the characters but do understand the struggles of their family life or even what is to come. There is a lot of danger and they are risking a lot. There is a couple relationships that have formed but honestly, there isn’t much development to them so it’s hard to feel anything for it.

The setting is different as they are no longer on a ship but now they are on the planet. It was interesting to see the interactions between the teens and those born on the planet. There is information shared about the Adamite population here and there but I feel like there could have been more. Since it is also the planet where Babel mines the Nyxia I wish there would have been more information about it too. There has been talk about it’s abilities but not enough to ever fully grasp what it is exactly. It can be dangerous though and does cause an issue for the teen group.

There is always a lot of talk surrounding Babel and what their motives are. It’s not that I don’t care about their hidden agenda but the company just feels like so many others in sci-fi writing. It’s hard to be intrigued by it. I do like that they include a different point-of-view other than Emmett to help explain things a bit more.

Overall, it was good and a tad bit better than the first. It may sound like it’s not my thing but it isn’t bad, haha.

Audiobook Review: Nyxia (The Nyxia Triad #1) by Scott Reintgen

Title: Nyxia (The Nyxia Triad #2)
Author: Scott Reintgen
Genre: YA Sci-fi
Publication Date: September 12th, 2017
Publisher: Crown Books for Young Readers
Rating: 3 stars

“What would you be willing to risk for a lifetime of fortune?

Emmett Atwater isn’t just leaving Detroit; he’s leaving Earth. Why the Babel Corporation recruited him is a mystery, but the number of zeroes on their contract has him boarding their lightship and hoping to return to Earth with enough money to take care of his family.

Forever.

Before long, Emmett discovers that he is one of ten recruits, all of whom have troubled pasts and are a long way from home. Now each recruit must earn the right to travel down to the planet of Eden—a planet that Babel has kept hidden—where they will mine a substance called Nyxia that has quietly become the most valuable material in the universe.

But Babel’s ship is full of secrets. And Emmett will face the ultimate choice: win the fortune at any cost, or find a way to fight that won’t forever compromise what it means to be human.” (Goodreads)

I haven’t read a sci-fi book in awhile and since this trilogy has been on my shelf for quite some time and the library had the audiobook readily available, I figured why not!

I have only read one other book by this author and it was a middle grade so I can’t really say much other than I do like his writing regardless of age catergory.

This isn’t a groundbreaking sci-fi that brings new elements to the table but it did have its good moments that kept me from being bored as I listened, Although, it did take a bit to actually get through the audiobook, haha. Not really the fault of the book but just me not wanting to listen to anything.

The book starts off with us being introduced to Emmett. There is a bit of backstory for him and as the plot continues more comes up about it as well as Babel who is in charge of the venture into space. Emmett comes from a poor family and his mother has cancer. It is one reason he is doing this competition so that she can have the best healthcare as well as money for their needs. It’s very admiring to want to do something so risky for others.

Not only does Emmett come from a tragic background, so does the other contestants. Each one either has a family member with cancer or come from a family with nothing. It sets up the stage for them all wanting to win no matter what the cost is. Some will really do anything to stay in.

My favorite character has to be Bilal. He is so nice and genuine about his actions. I love that he doesn’t let the competition go to his head and even forgives when I know I wouldn’t have.

Some similarities I have notices is the use of Babel or Eden in different sci-fi/dystopian books. I did see a question answered in why the author chose to use them and it brought more clarity and it also made me think a bit more as he said there is also the topic of mercy found within the book. Which there is a lot of examples for that, especially from Emmett.

The competition between the characters can be cutthroat and dangerous. There are instances were some of them get hurt quite badly and at times it does go into detail about the injuries they suffered. It’s not too graphic but it is there.

I can’t say I was blown away by the action in the book as it felt few and far between but does pick up more by the end. The ending is pretty intense and has me left with a lot of questions and wanting answers about Babel and even some of the other contestants. It’s hard to really know who to trust.

Overall, I did like this one even if it felt like other ya sci-fi books. The mystery of Babel and the planet they are leaving to still have me curious enough to continue on with book two. Hopefully things will pick up a bit.

Audiobook Review: The Inventor’s Secret by Andrea Cremer

Title: The Inventor’s Secret
Author: Andrea Cremer
Genre: YA Historical Fiction / Steampunk / Sci-Fi
Publication Date: July 14th, 2014
Publisher: Speak

A new steampunk series from Andrea Cremer, the New York Times bestselling author of the Nightshade novels

Perfect for fans of Libba Bray’s The Diviners, Cassandra Clare’s Clockwork Angel, Scott Westerfeld’s Leviathan and Phillip Reeve’s Mortal Engines.

In this world, sixteen-year-old Charlotte and her fellow refugees have scraped out an existence on the edge of Britain’s industrial empire. Though they live by the skin of their teeth, they have their health (at least when they can find enough food and avoid the Imperial Labor Gatherers) and each other. When a new exile with no memory of his escape  or even his own name seeks shelter in their camp he brings new dangers with him and secrets about the terrible future that awaits all those who have struggled has to live free of the bonds of the empire’s Machineworks.” (Goodreads)

I was curious about this ever since I read a different book by this author. The blurb also gets me because I did love the Mortal Engines series and although I don’t read steampunk books very often, sometimes you just need to pick up a different subgenre than usual.

I’ve been busy with other ebooks and physical books to read this one in that format but luckily my library has this trilogy on audiobook. I actually started it in the morning and by the afternoon I had finished already. It was actually really quick even if I was listening to it at a x2 speed. Even though I did get through this fast, I did have some issues but not enough to make me dislike.

The book starts off with not much of an introduction for anything and as the story progresses we learn more and more about the rebellion and the children/teens that are a part of it while their parents are out on the frontlines.

Charlotte is a daughter to rebellions and lives in a cave away from the Imperial. She also has a brother there with her who does a lot of inventing. I’m always fascinated with the different inventions authors can think of while being different from other books from the same genre. There is a few interactions between them but there wasn’t enough to really feel the sibling bond. I think this was the case for many of the characters though. Charlotte is very stubborn and she does want what is best for this around her. I did like seeing how she dealt with her certain circumstances.

There are a lot of other characters but I just didn’t feel a connection with any of them. I think it’s because there isn’t much development but at least the plot is good enough for me.

It does start off slow as things are explained but the action and plot twists do ramp up during the last half. I really liked the plot point that involves a boy who is found and doesn’t remember anything. The plot twists for him are pretty intense and I can’t wait to see what happens next.

There is a bit of romance but it is very small. I do like Charlotte’s love interest but it did feel a bit instant-love even if they have known each other for a few years. It’s hard to believe it when it’s off the pages. If you aren’t a fan of love triangles then I would skip this book.

Overall, I liked this one but it also lacked in a lot of areas. The plot kept me intrigued and I will continue on to book two and hopefully I will get more development for the characters.

Edit: I did end up dnfing the second book as it was just very slow and nothing seemed to be developing.

Audiobook Review: TRUEL1F3 (Lifelike #3) by Jay Kristoff

Title: TRUEL1F3 (Lifelike #3)
Author: Jay Kristoff
Genre: YA Sci-fi / Dystopia
Publication Date: June 30th, 2020
Publisher: Knopf Books for Young Readers




From the bestselling co-author of the Illuminae Files comes the thrilling finale in the LIFEL1K3 trilogy–hailed by Marie Lu as “a breathless, action-packed exploration of what humanity really means.”

Best friends have become enemies. Lovers have become strangers. And deciding whose side you’re on could be the difference between life and death. For Eve and Lemon, discovering the truth about themselves–and each other–was too much for their friendship to take. But with the country on the brink of a new world war–this time between the BioMaas swarm at CityHive and Daedalus’s army at Megopolis, loyalties will be pushed to the brink, unlikely alliances will form and with them, betrayals. But the threat doesn’t stop there, because the lifelikes are determined to access the program that will set every robot free, a task requiring both Eve and Ana, the girl she was created to replace. In the end, violent clashes and heartbreaking choices reveal the true heroes . . . and they may not be who you think they are.” (Goodreads)

And another one bites the dust!

I have finished another series and crossed it off my list. Only 9 more to go that are completed and can be read through. I know, I’m a slacker. Haha.

Anyways, before starting this one I reread the first two books because I have a terrible memory. I didn’t realize that the second and third have a summary of what happened. Which is very nice if you don’t have time to reread!

Since it was all fresh in my head, I thought I would enjoy it as much as the first two but for some reason something just felt off. I honestly can’t pin point what though. I’m not saying that I didn’t like it, it was good but I guess I was just expecting a bit more.

*Spoilers*

When it comes to the relationship between Eve and Ezekiel. I am still kind of confused. From the beginning of the series he thought that she was someone else and then left her when he realized the real one was still out there. They see each other here and there but obviously as enemies so there isn’t much going on. In this book, Eve comes back to her sense and loves him. It just kind of seems not realistic, but then again this is a book about robots. 😂

The other relationships in the book were okay but didn’t really grab me. I just feel kind of neutral about them.

As the series progresses and even in this one, I actually liked Lemon Fresh a lot more than Eve. She always stayed true to who she was no matter the circumstances that she faced. She also didn’t give up on her friend even when they were apart. She still wanted to help. I am seriously going to name my next cat after her.

The plot wasn’t as action packed for me as the other two but it was still good. I liked seeing the Preacher come back and learning about the company he has been working for. I don’t think the plot twists were as surprising and saw one coming from the get-go.

*End of Spoilers*

Overall, I did like the book but just felt like some things were kind of meh. The ending seemed too quick but maybe that’s just me. I still think that this is a great series and would recommend it still.

Audiobook Review: DEV1AT3 (Truelife #2) by Jay Kristoff

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Title: DEV1AT3 (Lifelike #2)
Author: Jay Kristoff
Genre: YA Sci-fi
Publication Date: June 25th, 2019
Publisher: Knopf Books For Young Readers

“Lemon Fresh has seen better days.

After the climactic battle in Babel, she finds herself separated from Ezekiel and Cricket in the wastelands. Lemon’s abilities to manipulate electricity mark her as a deviate, and deadly corporate operatives are hunting her to use as a weapon in the war between BioMaas Incorporated and Daedelus Technologies. Instead, Lemon finds herself falling in with a group of fellow deviates—a band of teenagers with astonishing abilities, led by an enigmatic figure known as the Major, who may hold the secrets to Lemon’s past.

Meanwhile, Cricket finds himself in possession of the puritanical Brotherhood, a religious cult set for a head-on collision with the Major and his band. Searching for Lemon, Ezekiel finds a strange ally in an old enemy, and uncovers a plot that may see him reunited with his beloved Ana.

And inside Babel, a remade Eve hatches a plan to bring an end to the world.” (Goodreads)

Reread Finished on 12/23/20

I do feel the same about this book since I read it back in 2019. It was such a great sequel and the ending has me hyped for the final one which I have already rented from the library as an audiobook.

eARC provided by publisher through NetGalley. All opinions are my own.

Let me tell you about this book. It was crazy! Plot twists came out of nowhere and literally ripped me a part!

The beginning is great as it reintroduces the reader to the characters once again and goes over what happened to them during book one. You don’t see this often but it’s always awesome to have a refresher.

When it comes to this series, you can expect that the writing style will always be unique with the choice of words the author uses which adds a touch of pizzazz and makes the characters pop. Lemon Fresh is a good example of this and is literally my number one!

The main characters are all pretty much struggling with their identity/feelings in some way. This is always nice to see and makes it easier to connect with the them on a deeper level. Caring for the ones you love is hard when obstacles are thrown in your way whether you are a robot or human.

Lemon Fresh has a lot going on and I was here for her story! She is at the top of favorite characters because she is fierce and loyal. I just want to squeeze her but I know she wouldn’t like that, ha. I hope everything works out for her because right now I am not okay with how this book ended.

Overall, I enjoyed this book and the heartbreak that came with it. I will be impatiently waiting for book three and trying to cope with my feelings. If you haven’t read this series yet, get on it! Jay Kristoff never disappoints.

Audiobook Review: LIFEL1K3 by Jay Kristoff

Title: LIFEL1K3 (LIFEL1K3 #1)
Author: Jay Kristoff
Genre: YA Sci-fi / Fantasy
Publication Date: May 29th, 2018
Publisher: Knopf Books for Young Readers




From the coauthor of the New York Times bestselling Illuminae Files comes the first book in a new series that’s part Romeo and Juliet, part Terminator, and all adrenaline.

On an island junkyard beneath a sky that glows with radiation, a deadly secret lies buried in the scrap. Seventeen-year-old Eve isn’t looking for trouble–she’s too busy looking over her shoulder. The robot gladiator she spent months building has been reduced to a smoking wreck, she’s on the local gangster’s wanted list, and the only thing keeping her grandpa alive is the money she just lost to the bookies. Worst of all, she’s discovered she can somehow destroy machines with the power of her mind, and a bunch of puritanical fanatics are building a coffin her size because of it. If she’s ever had a worse day, Eve can’t remember it. The problem is, Eve has had a worse day–one that lingers in her nightmares and the cybernetic implant where her memories used to be. Her discovery of a handsome android named Ezekiel–called a “Lifelike” because they resemble humans–will bring her world crashing down and make her question whether her entire life is a lie. With her best friend Lemon Fresh and her robotic sidekick Cricket in tow, Eve will trek across deserts of glass, battle unkillable bots, and infiltrate towering megacities to save the ones she loves…and learn the truth about the bloody secrets of her past.” (Goodreads)

When I read this book for the first time in 2018, I had my blog but I wasn’t writing out my reviews. They were short paragraphs as you can see below this one. Since I wanted to reread the first two books before I read the final book, I thought I would update my review as well!

While listening to this book, I forgot how much I liked it the first time around. There are so many plot twists and you can help but feel for every character, whether they have a big role or a smaller one. Kristoff knows how to get your feelings going. He’s just too good at his job!

Eve and Lemon Fresh still have one of the best friendships around. I love that they care for each other. It’s also an awesome thing that Eve and Silas never held a grudge when it came to how they met Lemon. It just shows that they are good people but definitely get themselves into not great positions.

This book is another reason I don’t want robots to exist, haha. If they are going to be so lifelike, I say no thanks! Don’t need no murder bots around!

Overall, I just really like this book. One day I will name a cat Lemon Fresh and we will be the best of friends. If you like Jay Kristoff but haven’t read this series, I would highly recommend it! Can’t wait to continue on with the audiobooks.

Old Review from 2018:

The first book I finished in September was Lifelik3 by Jay Kristoff. I can’t say it was my favorite read of the month but I did thoroughly enjoy this book. I loved the friendship between Eve and Lemon Fresh. Although the beginning and middle were good the ending leaves you wanting more! I can’t wait for the second book and will definitely be preordering when possible!

Book Review: Skyhunter by Marie Lu

Title: Skyhunter
Author: Marie Lu
Genre: YA Sci-fi / Dystopian
Publication Date: September 29th, 2020
Publisher: Roaring Brook Press





#1 New York Times-bestselling author Marie Lu is back with an adrenaline-laced novel about the lengths one warrior will go to fight for freedom and those she loves.

A broken world.
An overwhelming evil.
A team of warriors ready to strike back.

Talin is a Striker, a member of an elite fighting force that stands as the last defense for the only free nation in the world: Mara.

A refugee, Talin knows firsthand the horrors of the Federation, a world-dominating war machine responsible for destroying nation after nation with its terrifying army of mutant beasts known only as Ghosts.

But when a mysterious prisoner is brought from the front to Mara’s capital, Talin senses there’s more to him than meets the eye. Is he a spy from the Federation? What secrets is he hiding?

Only one thing is clear: Talin is ready to fight to the death alongside her fellow Strikers for the only homeland she has left . . . with or without the boy who might just be the weapon to save—or destroy—them all.” (Goodreads)

I’m not even going to lie, even though this had a gorgeous cover it wasn’t really on my radar. But, then I saw the hardcover and how beautiful it was so I rented an ebook from my library and started reading to determine if I needed a copy on my shelf, haha.

Don’t judge me!

Even though I didn’t know much about this book, I was still stucked in from the beginning. The way that the author describes the Ghosts are terrifying and yet intriguing, but mostly terrifying!

The author also doesn’t skip out on plot twists either. There was one right from the beginning and even though I hadn’t been reading for long I still found myself saddened.

The plot is filled with war, political games, crazy experiments, and refugees who are trying to make things work while others look down on them and call them rats. Some of these things can be found in our world and even though this is fiction, it’s still a reality for many.

Talin, the main character, is a refugee and is also mute. I don’t think I have ever read a book where a character is mute. It made for an interesting experience when it came to the dialogue but I don’t think it was confusing since the author did make sure to state whenever they were signing their words.

When it comes to her being a refugee, she is looked down upon and many refer to her as a rat and a spy by her own people. She walks a fine line each day but it still didn’t stop her from becoming a Striker and fighting for people that would probably rather see her dead. It’s just crazy how she has so much strength and courage to do what she says but she is loyal and wants change. It’s very admirable.

The minor characters do not feel so minor and fill the pages with their own stories. I liked learning more about each one and hoping that nothing bad happened to them when everything was getting intense.

There is a mysterious prisoner but I won’t say much because I don’t want to give anything away because it’s better to be surprised! He is very intriguing and has a hard background. There definitely could be a romance blossoming between him and Talin but nothing happens in this book and I’m sure there will be more in the sequel.

My only complaint I would make is that sometimes the timeline just felt a bit off. There was a part where I thought it was a few days and it ended up being weeks. This could be me and maybe I missed read something. I’m not sure. There are also flashbacks that would appear in the middle of a chapter and would confuse me a bit too. Other than that, I think the writing was done well.

Overall, I enjoyed this book and glad I gave it a chance. I am looking forward to the sequel because quite the plot twist bomb was dropped at the end and I need to know what becomes of it!

Audiobook Review: The Key to Fear by Kristin Cast

Title: The Key to Fear (The Key #1)
Author: Kristin Cast
Genre: YA Sci-fi / Dystopian
Publication Date: October 13, 2020
Publisher: Blackstone Audiobooks

Thank you to the publisher and Netgalley for an early audiobook to review! All opinions are my own.





To Health.
To Life.
To the Future.

We are The Key.
‘No touching today for a healthy tomorrow.’

Elodie obeys The Key. Elodie obeys the rules. Elodie trusts in the system. At least, Elodie used to…

Aidan is a rebel. Aidan doesn’t do what he’s told. Aidan just wants to be free. Aidan is on his last chance…

After a pandemic wiped out most of the human race, The Key took power. The Key dictates the rules. They govern in order to keep people safe. But as Elodie and Aidan begin to discover there is another side to The Key, they realise not everything is as it seems.

Rather than playing protector, The Key are playing God.(Goodreads)

This book is set in a world much like our own with the current pandemic we are facing. It can definitely be pretty intense to read, haha.

The author does a good job from grabbing your attention from the beginning with people being infected and it spreading rapidly, especially in the hospital where Elodie works. She has seen too much death.

There are multiple point-of-views and they all come from different people with different motives when it comes to the pandemic. Much like our own world, there are the people who believe that it is nothing but government restricting what we can. In their case, they can’t even touch. Personally, I’m not big on hugging but I would definitely miss being able to cuddle my daughter.

When it comes to the characters, some were more developed than others. Elodie and Aidan are the main stars and the rest just didn’t intrigue me enough for me to care about them. The guy that is supposed to be in a relationship with Elodie is mentioned a few times, comes in for a few scenes and is just quite predictable in his actions. Although, he could get more development in the next book if my suspicions are correct.

Even though we know about the pandemic that has changed the way they live, there isn’t much else we know about it. The world-building was lacking too but I did look past all of this because at least the plot was interesting enough. There are quite the plot twists!

I did enjoy listening to the audiobook and thought that it was nicely done.

Overall, this was a good book and I am curious about the sequel. It did leave off on an interesting cliffhanger that can definitely make or break the next book. Hopefully there will be more world-building and some of my questions will be answered.

Book Review: Rogue Princess by B.R. Myers

38580109Title: Rogue Princess
Author: B.R. Myer
Genre: YA Sci-fi / Fantasy / Retelling
Publication Date: January 21st, 2020
Publisher: Swoon Reads

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“A princess fleeing an arranged marriage teams up with a snarky commoner to foil a rebel plot in B. R. Myers’ Rogue Princess, a gender-swapped sci-fi YA retelling of Cinderella.

Princess Delia knows her duty: She must choose a prince to marry in order to secure an alliance and save her failing planet. Yet she secretly dreams of true love, and feels there must be a better way. Determined to chart her own course, she steals a spaceship to avoid the marriage, only to discover a handsome stowaway.

All Aidan wanted was to “borrow” a few palace trinkets to help him get off the planet. Okay, so maybe escaping on a royal ship wasn’t the smartest plan, but he never expected to be kidnapped by a runaway princess!

Sparks fly as this headstrong princess and clever thief battle wits, but everything changes when they inadvertently uncover a rebel conspiracy that could destroy their planet forever.” (Goodreads)

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I’m not going to lie, this cover really drew me in when it came to wanting to pick this up. I should have known from previous experience with retellings that I should go in with lower expectations but alas, here we are.

One thing that I did like about this book was that it was a unique retelling since it was set in space and the genders were swapped. Everything else was just kind of meh.

Since this was a standalone, it makes it hard to connect with the characters. There isn’t much going for them and there also wasn’t much action to satisfy me.

Even though the setting was cool, I still wish there was more to it. There isn’t much about Delia’s planet besides a few things here and there. There isn’t really anything said about the planets the princes come from. It was hard to really immerse myself in the world.

The romance was just okay. It felt very insta-lovey and we all know how much I do not like that. It was hard to care about them being together which is a majority of the book.

Overall, it just wasn’t a book for me. I wanted to like it but there were just too many things that I just didn’t care for.

-Joanna TheGeekishBrunette (1)