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Publisher: Feiwel & Friends

Friday, November 4, 2016

Blog Tour Review: Heartless

Posted by Irish in 4 Stars, Blog Tour, Review, Young Adult0 Comments

Blog Tour Review: HeartlessHeartless by Marissa Meyer
Published by Feiwel & Friends on November 8th 2016
Genres: Emotions & Feelings, Fairy Tales, Folklore, & Legends, Family, Fantasy, Friendship, Love & Romance, Magic, Politics & Intrigue, Romance, Royalty, Young Adult
Pages: 464
Format: ARC
Source: Publisher
Buy on Amazon|Buy on Audible|Buy on Barnes & Noble|Buy on Book Depository
Setting: Wonderland

Long before she was the terror of Wonderland — the infamous Queen of Hearts — she was just a girl who wanted to fall in love.
Catherine may be one of the most desired girls in Wonderland, and a favorite of the yet-unmarried King of Hearts, but her interests lie elsewhere. A talented baker, all she wants is to open a shop with her best friend and supply the Kingdom of Hearts with delectable pastries and confections. But according to her mother, such a goal is unthinkable for the young woman who could be the next Queen.
At a royal ball where Cath is expected to receive the king's marriage proposal, she meets Jest, the handsome and mysterious court joker. For the first time, she feels the pull of true attraction. At the risk of offending the King and infuriating her parents, she and Jest enter into an intense, secret courtship.
Cath is determined to define her own destiny and fall in love on her terms. But in a land thriving with magic, madness, and monsters, fate has other plans.

Also by this author: Cinder, Scarlet, Cress, Fairest, Winter

First Line(s): Three luscious lemon tarts glistened up at Catherine.

First things first…there are FOUR days until HEARTLESS!

Can you believe it?!? The wait is almost over!


We all know the story of Alice in Wonderland even if we’ve never read the book by Lewis Carroll we at least know the Disney version about a plucky girl who falls down a rabbit hole and goes on a most extraordinary adventure. There are songs and shenanigans and run ins with the evil Queen of Hearts. When you watch the movie or read the book the Queen is always cast as a villainous character and as a viewer its easy to sympathize with Alice and cheer her triumphs. But you don’t always think about why the Queen is so evil or that maybe Alice isn’t as nice as you originally think. We grow up conditioned to think about fairy tales in a certain way that it can be a bit shocking to see alternate versions of the stories we love. We see this in the stories of Gregory McGuire and on the show Once Upon a Time and now here, in HEARTLESS by Marissa Meyer we get to see a new side to the Queen of Hearts. Not only does HEARTLESS make you think differently about a story you thought you knew but its also a bit of a unicorn in the world of fantasy books in that it is a standalone book.


HEARTLESS is a story that will suck you in from the start. This book is such a different sort of story from Meyer’s series, The Lunar Chronicles and yet you still get her signature writing style and her ability to spin a beautiful story. HEARTLESS is not a retelling of Alice in Wonderland, its a prequel. Its a story that came about because Meyer’s asked the question why is the queen so evil? Was she born this way or did something happen to make her this way. Catherine (aka the Queen) is a girl much like the readers of the book she has hopes and dreams and a love for baking that will make a reader’s mouth water throughout this book. She’s of a noble family but she dreams of opening a bakery with her friend and maid.


But we all know that’s not how the story ended up and I loved Meyer’s take on the story. I love the characters that she created and how she incorporated some old friends. It was a wonderful mix of original and new and told in a way that I think would make Lewis Carroll proud. HEARTLESS is a book that will suck you in with its whimsy and you’ll fall in love with Cath. You’ll turn the pages hoping against hope that somehow the ending of this story will be different and that Cath will get her bakery and her happily ever after. You’ll hope that in the end you’ll learn that the Queen of Hearts is a different girl altogether. But not all stories have a happy ending and sometimes your heart has to break. And boy does Meyer’s play with your heart but everything that happens needs to happen and despite the lack of a HEA its still possible to love this book. In fact, its kind of hard not to like this story and I highly recommend it.




Join Fierce Reads in celebrating all things Heartless by Marissa Meyer! Starting Monday, September 19, they’ll be counting down to on sale with daily challenges where you can show your love and excitement, AND where you’ll have the chance to win a special edition advance copy of Heartless and MORE every single day.

Enter for your chance to win each day from September 19 – November 8 on Twitter or Instagram using #HeartlessCountdown and #Sweepstakes.

Fierce Reads will be posting weekly challenge updates and adding more links and information for some challenges as we get closer. Click here to take a look at the schedule and join in the excitement!


Sunday, April 5, 2015

Review: The Queen of Bright and Shiny Things by Ann Aguirre

Posted by Irish in 3 Stars, Review, Young Adult0 Comments

Review: The Queen of Bright and Shiny Things by Ann AguirreThe Queen of Bright and Shiny Things by Ann Aguirre
Published by Feiwel & Friends on 07 April 2015
Genres: Contemporary Romance, Friendship, Love & Romance, Social Issues, Young Adult
Pages: 328
Format: ARC
Source: Publisher
Buy on Amazon|Buy on Audible|Buy on Barnes & Noble
Also by this author: I Want it That Way

Place(s) Traveled To: Farmburg, Illinois

First Line: I know what they call me.

The Queen of Bright and Shiny Things by Ann Aguirre is actually a hard book for me to review because I read it so long ago. I brought this one with me on my trip to Paris last October because I thought that it would be a fun, light and fluffy read. I also have a good memory for the things I read but I found that not long after I finished the book that the details of this one had escaped me. And then much like the details I also misplaced my copy of the book so I wasn’t able to do a skim re-read of it. But as I said I do have a good memory so the more I thought about The Queen of Bright and Shiny Things the more that returned to me. The most prominent detail of which was Sage’s tendency to leave post-it notes for people.

I loved this idea and if I was still in high or college then I think I might find myself doing something similar. I like the idea of leaving a little note for someone to find just to brighten up their day a little with a small compliment. Sometimes its the little things like that, that take nothing for someone to do, that can make a world of difference to someone else. And I do know that since I finished The Queen of Bright and Shiny Things I have tried to be a little kinder and pay more compliments to those around me. And if the book was more about this then I think that I would have liked it more but The Queen of Bright and Shiny Things wasn’t all light and fluffy and it had all this added drama to it that just kept taking me out of the story.

Queen of Bright and Shiny Quote

I thought that Sage fell just a little too quickly for Shane and I also thought that she strove too hard for this idea of perfection. The reason of which we learn as we read the book but until that big moment there are all these cryptic references to her dark past and how no one would love her if they knew. And it was just ALL TOO MUCH. By the time the big reveal came I just didn’t care anymore. I also thought that Sage was too passive and forgiving. Especially when it came to her best friend Ryan who used her for several years. And the fact that he managed to keep something so big from her for so long just has me shaking my head in bafflement at the blinders that Sage wore.

For me, The Queen of Bright and Shiny Things, is a forgettable read. I read it quickly, as per Goodreads, but as I was in a foreign country with no English language TV to distract me that may not mean much at all. I think that part of my disconnect with the book was that there felt like there was this wall between the reader and Sage’s thoughts. There was was a lot of telling and not showing and so I never really connected with the story or the characters. And by the end I just didn’t really care all that much.



IR - Queen of Bright & Shiny

Add Sean Griswold’s Head by Lindsey Leavitt to Goodreads. (Click here for my review.)

Add Past Perfect by Leila Sales to Goodreads. (Click here for my review.)


Wednesday, June 4, 2014

Review: Broken Hearts, Fences & Other Things to Mend by Katie Finn

Posted by Irish in 3 Stars, Review, Young Adult2 Comments

Review: Broken Hearts, Fences & Other Things to Mend by Katie FinnBroken Hearts, Fences, and Other Things to Mend by Katie Finn
Series: Broken Hearts & Revenge,
Published by Feiwel & Friends on 13 May 2014
Genres: Adolescence, Dating & Sex, Emotions & Feelings, Family, Friendship, Girls & Women, Love & Romance, Self-Esteem & Self-Reliance, Social Issues, Young Adult
Pages: 339
Format: ARC
Source: Publisher
Buy on Amazon|Buy on Audible|Buy on Barnes & Noble|Buy on Book Depository

Place(s) Traveled To: Putnam, Connecticut // Qupnset (The Hamptons), New York

First Line(s): The Wednesday afternoon that it all started, I was thinking about how great my life was going.


I am not entirely sure where to begin with my thoughts on Broken Hearts, Fences, & Other Things to Mend by Katie Finn. The first thing is that when I first requested this book I thought that it was a standalone and it sounded like a cute summer read. Something that would be perfect for the beach and give all the happy beachtime reading feels. Only this wasn’t a standalone, its a series, and while it starts off as a cute summery type read by the end it had me a bit ragey and eye twitchy and I just find it hard to wrap my brain around how Katie Finn and Morgan Matson are the same person as this is such a different type of book.

First the main character Gemma has all these perfect plans with her dull boyfriend who then breaks up with her sending her into a tizzy. Then she gets sent to spend the summer with her dad in the Hamptons for the summer where we learn she hasn’t been there since she was 11 and did something horrible to her BFF, Hallie, and she dreads going back. On the train there she meets Josh, Hallie’s brother, who thinks she’s Sophie based on a name on a cup and she decides not to correct him. Because what better way to correct all the wrongs of the past by lying about who you are in order to show people what a good person you are now. There is no way this can end badly….right? If your head just whacked against something (hand, keyboard, desk, etc) then you know what my reaction was to most of this book.

Broken Hearts is filled with predictable and cliched blunders as “Sophie” tries to fix the mistakes of her past. Mistakes which end up being pretty significant to all around and not something a simple apology could fix. Its amazing the damage an 11 year old can do and all to prevent something else from happening which happened anyway so it was all for nothing. Toss in some WTF moments and some twists that I saw coming from a mile away and in the end I was left with a disappointing story. But I still might have been ok with it if it was a one and done. But no, there is going to be more…two more to be exact and I just don’t see how this story can be dragged out for that long. *Insert heavy sigh here*

I wanted to love Broken Hearts I did because I did like another Katie Finn book that I read a long ways back. It was short and cute and filled with shenanigans. Broken Hearts tries to do that but, IMO, it fails to deliver. Perhaps its because there isn’t much heart of depth to the story. Gemma isn’t trying to mend things with Hallie because she feels bad she is doing so because she wants everyone to like her. She doesn’t regret what she did nor does she regret lying about her identity to try and fix things. Gemma is a pretty selfish personality and Hallie was quite the mean girl and I just don’t see any good coming from these two trying to be friends. The only real saving grace in this book was Josh and of course he is an innocent victim in the war being waged by Hallie and Gemma. At this time I don’t really see myself reading more of this series although we’ll see what happens a year from know when its scheduled to be released. Because if there is something I know about me, its that I can be a glutton for punishment in these sort of reads and I may not be able to resist.