I really enjoyed this. It was fun and easy. Cute and quaint. Something that was just a fun diversion for a few moments. The pictures in and of themselves were glorious. And that’s not even taking into account the good writing.
My biggest complaint about this is that there isn’t more specific information on each of the sprites. I love the world that Black and DiTerlizzi have created. And I would have loved to read more about the particulars of the different species that appear in the pages.
This was incredibly short. But also good fun. Mostly I wish this was longer. But I still loved all of the imagery throughout.
<- A Grand Tour of the Enchanted World, Navigate by Thimbletack
Arthur Spiderwick’s Field Guide to the Fantastical World Around You ->
Title: Queene of Light Author: Jennifer Armintrout Series: Lightworld / Darkworld #1 Rating Out of 5: 3 (On the fence about this one) My Bookshelves:Fae, Magic, Paranormal romance Dates read: 14th – 21st October 2021 Pace: Medium Format: Novel Publisher: Mira Year: 2009 5th sentence, 74th page: When someone wished to speak with the Queene, they would wait forever.
In a time not long from now, the veil between fantasy and reality is ripped asunder – creatures of myth and fairy tale spill into the mortal world. Enchanted yet horrified, humans force the magical beings Underground, to colonize the sewers and abandoned subway tunnels beneath their glittering cities.
But even magic folk cannot dwell in harmony, and soon two Worlds emerge: the Lightworld, home to faeries, dragons and dwarves; and the Darkworld, where vampries, werewolves, angels and demons lurk.
Now, in the dank and shadowy place between Lightworld and Darkworld, a transformation is about to begin…
Ayla, a half faery, half human assassin, is stalked by Malachi, a Death Angel tasked with harvesting mortal souls. They clash. Immortality evaporates, forging a bond neither may survive. And in the face of unbridled ambitions and untested loyalties, an ominous prophecy is revealed that will shake the Worlds.
I really, really wanted to like this novel. I mean, the premise is great and the writing is good too. But I just… couldn’t get into it. I’m not sure if that was just the mood I was in (so this is definitely in the reread pile) or just generally not my speed.
One of the things I found most difficult about this novel I think was the characters. I found it hard to connect to both the leads and honestly could not have cared less what happened to them. Not exactly something that inspires me to keep reading.
Again, I really loved the premise of this story. And the world building certainly intrigued me. I will most definitely give this another try since I did love the world that this was built in. And I’m intrigued as to how the female lead is going to get out of her weird marriage.
All in all, whilst I got halfway through this and gave it a DNF, I didn’t hate it. Enough that it’s staying on my shelves ready for another attempt in years to come.
Title: Grave Dance Author: Kalayna Price Series: Alex Craft #2 Rating Out of 5: 4.5 (Amazing, but not quite perfect) My Bookshelves:Fae, Ghosts, Grim reapers, Paranormal romance Dates read: 16th – 26th April 2021 Pace: Fast Format: Novel Publisher: Roc Year: 2011 5th sentence, 74th page: Small, large, winged, floral, too-many limbed, too-few – they were a dizzying display rarely seen on the streets.
Whoever said dead men tell no tales obviously never met Alex Craft…
After a month spent recovering from a vicious fight with a sorcerer, grave witch Alex Craft is ready to get back to solving murders by raising the dead. With her love life in turmoil, thanks to the disappearance of Fae Investigation Bureau agent Falin Andrews and a shocking “L”-word confession from death himself, Alex is eager for the distractions of work. But her new case turns out to be a deadly challenge.
The police hire Alex to consult on a particularly strange investigation in the nature preserve south of Nekros City. The strange part: There are no corpses – only fragments of them. A serial killer is potentially on the loose, and Alex has no way to raise a shade without a body, so she’ll have to rely on the magic of others to find leads. But as she begins investigating, a creature born of the darkest magic comes after her. Someone very powerful wants to make sure the only thing she finds is a dead end – her own.
It doesn’t matter how many times I read these novels… I love them each and every time. This read through was absolutely no different. It was fun and quirky and just an impossible to put down journal. I love Price’s writing and find myself irrevocably drawn in each and every time. It helps that I notice different parts of the storyline with each reading…
Alex seems to just keep getting herself further and further into trouble everytime I pick up one of her stories. I can’t wait to see what more trouble she gets into (I’ve only ever read up to Grave Memory before). She seems to be one of those characters that blunders into problem after problem, unable to quite stop herself. Which, of course, makes it a fun and entertaining adventure to be on with her. And seriously, very exciting. One of my favourite fast-paced books on my shelves.
I’d like to say that the love triangle in this story is getting far more complex. But, really, it’s not a triangle… it’s some kind of weird, squiggly line. But ultimately, Alex keeps finding herself stuck between two amazing guys. Honestly, I want her to end up with Death. But I’m actually not entirely sure that she will. Some series, it is easy to see who the final love interest will be. But in this one… I have no damn clue. And I love that fact. Aside from the fae politics, her ancestry and all sorts, it’s the love squiggly that makes me want to keep diving headfirst into this series.
Not only is this an amazing, kind of fast-paced story, it’s also one that is perfectly setting up many future battles and complications for the characters. It’s bringing all of the complexities of the fae courts into the complexities of attraction, debts, friendship, cops… there is so much groundwork being laid and it makes this story all that much more intriguing.
Title: Friend Robin Author: Maile Chapman In: Xo Orpheus (Kate Bernheimer) Rating Out of 5: 4.5 (Amazing, but not quite perfect) My Bookshelves:Fae, Mythology Dates read: 16th April 2021 Pace: Medium Format: Short story Publisher: Penguin Books Year: 2013 5th sentence, 74th page: We’d seen it before we made an offer, of course, but we hadn’t been back inside since the inspection, not until after the house closed, when, keys in hand, we came to make plans.
I knew well that my mother had been wanting to move closer to me for some time, so when she took a fall on the sidewalk outside her senior apartment complex back east I broke her lease and brought her to Nevada.
I love any tale that there is about Brownies. They are just such a great form of fae. One that I am more than a little obsessed with. But I really wasn’t expecting to find a brownie story in a collection of mythology retellings. Not really sure why though…
This is a great modern-day version of the brownie tale. And a warning about thanking these fae. I love the connection between Robin and the narrators’ mother and how protective Robin is. What a wonderful modern-day version of an age-old tale.
Honestly, this is the whole reason that you should always try and honour brownies or spirits. Try not to be aggressive and disrespectful in the moments that you can be.
Title: Grave Witch Author: Kalayna Price Series: Alex Craft #1 Rating Out of 5: 5 (I will read this again and again and again) My Bookshelves:Fae, Ghosts, Grim reapers, Paranormal romance Dates read: 28th February – 11th March 2021 Pace: Fast Format: Novel Publisher: Roc Year: 2010 5th sentence, 74th page: Which still didn’t explain why it didn’t register as dead.
Grave witch Alex Craft can speak to the dead, but that doesn’t mean she likes what they have to say.
As a private investigator and consultant for the police, Alex Craft has seen a lot of dark magic. But even though she’s on good terms with Death himself – who happens to look fantastic in jeans – nothing has prepared her for her latest case. Alex is investigating a high-profile murder when she’s attacked by the “shade” she’s raising, which should be impossible. To top off her day, someone makes a serious attempt on her life, but Death saves her. Guess he likes having her around…
To solve this case Alex will have to team up with tough homicide detective Falin Andrews. Falin seems to be hiding something – though it’s certainly not his dislike of Alex. But Alex knows she needs his help to navigate the tangled webs of mortal and paranormal politics, and to track down a killer who wields a magic so malevolent, it may cost Alex her life…and her soul.
I’ve read this book more times than I can count. I actually am at a point where I need to buy myself a new copy… it’s just starting to fall apart quite drastically. There is just a wonderful feeling about this tale. A sense of coming home just encompasses me whenever I open the spine of this book. Alex is an amazing heroine, the storyline is full of octane and makes your heart skip a beat. And the whole tale just generally sweeps you off your feet from the very first moment…
Normally I’m not a huge fan of love triangles – they feel kind of forced, and a little bit indulgent at times if I’m being honest. Yet, there is something about Price’s writing that makes me… not mind them. For Alex, the triangle with Falin and Death is just starting to form. And it doesn’t feel like a self-indulgent, faked out story where the girl is just desirable. Rather, it is the forming of two different relationships and the ways in which they expand. Falin and Death are two different characters, ones that will draw you in and leave you wondering who Alex will ultimately choose…
I have heaps and heaps of urban fantasy books on my shelves (it’s probably the biggest section if I’m being honest). And most of them deal with witches, magic, fae, or some kind of approach to this. However, I don’t have any books which have reapers, death and grave witches as a feature. Which makes this series and book even more special. There is only one other series that has a woman who is capable to seeing death and with that strong a connection to death – Darynda Jones’Charley Davidson series. I love the uniqueness and wonderful way that this story is approached. After all, Alex is a wonderful enigma, one that I want to find more and more out about.
This is one of those wonderfully fast paced urban fantasies. It is a great story on its own, but it also helps to set up the world of Alex Craft and all of the shenanigans that are about to follow. It is one of those stories, that no matter how many times I read it, I will find something else to enjoy. Something else that I didn’t know last time. And even though I mostly remember the storyline with each rereading… I still feel surprised and unable to put the book down with each rereading.
Title: The Cruel Prince Author: Holly Black Series: The Folk of the Air #1 Rating Out of 5: 5 (I will read this again and again and again) My Bookshelves:Fae, Fantasy, Paranormal fantasy, Young adult Dates read: 3rd – 9th November 2020 Pace: Medium Format: Novel Publisher: Hot Key Books Year: 2018 5th sentence, 74th page: My blood is on fire, boiling in my veins.
Of course I want to be like them. They’re beautiful as blades forged in some divine fire. And Cardan is even more beautiful than the rest. I hate him so much that sometimes when I look at him, I can hardly breathe.
One terrible morning, Jude and her sisters see their parents murdered. The fearsome assassin abducts all three girls to the Faerie court, where Jude soon realises that to survive she needs to be as cunning and deceitful as the Fey themselves. But the stairway to power is fraught with shadows and betrayal. And looming over all is the arrogant and charismatic Prince Cardan.
I seriously can’t stop thinking about this novel. Even though I’m writing this review days after I finished reading it, the words, the occurrences, the entire story is still in my mind’s eye. It was just amazing. Which really isn’t surprising since it was written by Holly Black and everything that I’ve had the pleasure of reading by her is a book that quickly finds its way to the top of my list.
The twist at the end of the story was only obvious about a paragraph before it happened. So, really not obvious or something that I guessed at all. And it was the best twist ever. Luckily, I couldn’t find The Wicked King in my TBR immediately after I finished The Cruel Prince… considering I have a massive stack of books that I’ve already started reading…
Jude is an awesome, completely kick ass lead character. I’m not necessarily in love with her as a person… she’s a little too confrontational and kind of nuts in my opinion. But as a product of being raised by the fae? Yeah, I absolutely loved her. It kind of makes me fear what Taryn will be like in the later books… I mean, they’re twins and whilst they’ve taken a different route to power… it’ll be interesting to see what happens next is the least that I can say.
I’ve only read the one series by Holly Black, and the thing that I loved the most about it was that she depicts the fae beautifully. She continues that vein in this story – the fae aren’t fun, happy, or light. This already feels so much darker than her Modern Faerie Tales series. But it’s still a great indication of the horrors that are in the traditional faerie tales….
She can’t cast, but she can catch Pixies… really well. So when a routine Pixie collecting job goes seriously hay-wire, it might just be up to her unique abilities to stop this full-scale demolition.
I jot down notes when I’m reading, so that it’s easier to write reviews when I’m done. And the first point I wrote for this story… :
Ooooooh. I liked this story.
It’s a pretty good summing up of my feelings really. This was fun and entertaining and I was really, really hoping that it was part of a series (it’s not, but I’m going to imagine it in my mind’s eye anyway…)
This short story combined pixies, sidhe, lamia and kelpies. All paranormal creatures that I have loved in previous stories, so, of course, I was drawn in completely. Plus, any story that starts with pixies is generally going to be fun… they’re such an interesting and insane paranormal pest.
I loved that in the end, this story was saved by pixie dust. Pixie dust saves the day and is what ultimately is the source of power in this fun and incredibly cute short story.
It’s hard enough doing home improvements. But attempting home improvements on a sentient house that doesn’t really want you… that’s a whole other level of difficulty.
I’ve read a few books in which there is the subject of fae property. It’s always fluid and responsive. But this is the first time I’ve read a story of any kind in which someone has to try and reclaim the fae property. And, in this circumstance, the fae property is not overly happy with being claimed. Leading to one hell of a home improvement job and moving in day…
I haven’t had the pleasure of meeting October Daye in my reading of novels (this shall soon be rectified). And so I really enjoyed not only her characterisation, but also all of her many sidekicks. I loved this odd bod bunch that just want to find a home that can keep them safe… it was quirky and a little zaney. Humorous and just generally thoroughly enjoyable.
I absolutely adored this short story. It was funny and cute. Filled with great drama and world building. And now I just can’t wait to sink my teeth into this series…
Title: Omens Author: Kelley Armstrong Series: Cainsville #1 Rating Out of 5: 5 (I will read this again and again and again) My Bookshelves:Fae, Paranormal fantasy, Urban fantasy Dates read: 24th May – 26th June 2020 Pace: Medium Format: Novel Publisher: sphere Year: 2013 5th sentence, 74th page: The kind I’d only ever seen on TV, usually where the bad guys holed up until the cops came busting through the door.
A LIFE SHATTERED IN ONE MOMENT.
On the eve of her wedding Olivia Jones discovers two shocking facts. One – she was adopted. Two – her biological parents are notorious serial killers.
A YOUNG WOMAN FORCED ON THE RUN.
With her life in immediate danger, Liv is thrown into a terrifying new world. But then she is confronted with a tantalising hope – is it possible her parents are innocent?
AND THE MYSTERIOUS TOWN THAT AVE HER SANCTUARY. AT A PRICE.
Arriving at the remote town of Cainsville, Liv believes she has found the perfect place to hide while she hunts for the truth. But Cainsville is no ordinary town – and Liv’s arrival was no accident…
So, there’s definitely a reason why I love Kelley Armstrong – Author. I’ve been putting off starting a new series by her because I tend to get sucked into her world, and then I’ll want to buy more and more books… but, I decided that I had to read Omens. I’ve read all the prequel short stories and really, really wanted to start on this series. It may have been a mistake… I now want to go out and buy the rest of the books in this series… and I really don’t have the money for that at the moment.
You really don’t need to read any of the prequel short stories to fall madly, stupidly in love with this novel. In some ways, it may even be a little better… you won’t know so much about the gargoyles, Gabriel and that slightly paranormal hint throughout the story. Although, if you’re like me and you want as much information as feasibly possible…. It’s well worth reading the short stories before this. It meant that I had some extra mysteries that I was just constantly guessing at. And some extra historical moments that helped to fill in some of the blanks…
I absolutely loved how Armstrong managed to layer the paranormal, omens on top of a very realistic storyline. It takes a long time to see how the paranormal starts to come into play. After reading her Women of the Otherworld series, it is really fun to see a more subtle and covert approach to the paranormal, and the way it is placed into a very realistic feeling setting. You can almost imagine that a town like Townsville exists and the power to read omens is strong and alive. I can’t wait to see how this “power” develops and the supernatural that is heavily hinted at throughout this novel develops as the series unravels.
There are many, many, amazing things going on in this novel. But one of the aspects that I enjoyed the most was that it definitely bought up the whole nature / nurture debate. That it highlighted the mixed and confused feelings that Olivia felt as she realised that part of her was created by two individuals she has never met. A good portion of this storyline is taken up with Olivia’s own internal battle, trying to figure out how to feel.
Gabriel is beginning to make his way in the world of criminal defense. But this latest case, featuring the orange cat is just a little bit unique… Cainsville kind of unique.
I like this short story that revisited Gabriel as an adult. You find out so much about his childhood in previous short stories, but, considering I’m convinced he’ll be an adult in Omens, I liked that there was a little bit more about him as he’s making his first forays into the adult world. The fact that it was done in a quite funny manner, with a bit of a sadistic twist… well, of course I enjoyed that all the more.
In all of the Cainsville short stories that I’ve read so far, one of the common re occurrences is karma, paying your debts, etc. The fact that this story uses an orange cat that just won’t stay away, can’t be killed and is pretty damn single-minded was quite intriguing and somewhat clever. It kept with the theme that I have found so far, but managed to make it a lot funnier – after all, who would have thought that a cat could cause that much damage?
The more short stories I read in this series, the more keen I am to start reading Omens. And, luckily, this is the last short story that stakes place before the activities in Omens, so now I get to read that novel to my heart’s content…