Series I Won’t Finish – Part 5

Part 1 | Part 2 | Part 3 | Part 4

It’s been a while since I’ve done one of these and since then, I’ve started some more series that I’m just not interested in continuing. I will obviously not be mentioning any of the series I mentioned in previous posts, you can check those out if you’re interested.


Caraval by Stephanie Garber

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I have not been shy about how much I hate this book. It was just not a good time for me, I didn’t enjoy anything about it. I have a spoiler free review and a spoilery rant about it. Check those out if you want to know my thoughts, but I have 0 intention of ever continuing with this series.

Legacy of Orisha by Tomi Adeyemi

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Read Children of Blood and Bone and it was just such a disappointing book. I didn’t hate it exactly, but it was so mediocre and boring and just not well written. Which is a shame cause it had so much potential. I have also reviewed this. So I have no intention of reading the upcoming books in the series, I even unhauled this one.

The Hazel Wood by Melissa Albert

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Same as Children of Blood and Bone, I just did not enjoy this series. I thought I would, I was excited by the synopsis. But it was so underwhelming for me. I just didn’t care. I unhauled it as well. There’s a sequel coming out next year and I just have no intention of picking it up.

The Rime Chronicles by Mindee Arnett

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I got the first book Onyx and Ivory in a Fairy Loot and I read it and was completely underwhelmed by it. I could tell that the author knew about horses, which I enjoyed. But otherwise it was just a lot of meh and wasted potential. The next book comes out this June, but I’m not going to pick it up.

These Rebel Waves by Sara Raasch

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I have tried reading two of Sara Raasch series and they both fell really flat. Her story ideas are always so cool, but then the execution falls flat for me and I don’t feel compelled to continue. I don’t remember whether I mentioned Snow Like Ashes in one of my other posts, but that’s her other series that I’ve tried and just have no interest in continuing.

Grace & Fury by Tracy Banghart

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Again, this book was completely underwhemling. I don’t care in the slightest what happens to the characters. I just… meh. I don’t care.

 

Children of Blood and Bone by Tomi Adeyemi – Book Review

34728667Rating: 2/5 stars

Genre: Fantasy, YA

First published: 2018

Author: Tomi Adeyemi

Synopsis: Zélie Adebola remembers when the soil of Orïsha hummed with magic. Burners ignited flames, Tiders beckoned waves, and Zélie’s Reaper mother summoned forth souls.

But everything changed the night magic disappeared. Under the orders of a ruthless king, maji were killed, leaving Zélie without a mother and her people without hope.

Now Zélie has one chance to bring back magic and strike against the monarchy. With the help of a rogue princess, Zélie must outwit and outrun the crown prince, who is hell-bent on eradicating magic for good.

Danger lurks in Orïsha, where snow leoponaires prowl and vengeful spirits wait in the waters. Yet the greatest danger may be Zélie herself as she struggles to control her powers and her growing feelings for an enemy.

Book Depository | Goodreads


Before I get into this review, a disclaimer of sorts. I wrote a discussion about this a while back, if you’re interested, but here are the cliffnotes. In my opinion, this book suffers from what I call diversity hype syndrome: where a book is hyped for no other reason than being diverse. This is something that I don’t like at all. Diverse books should still strive to be good books. And I am convinced that if this book were about a bunch of white people, most people would have found it mediocre at best.

That said, let’s talk about the book itself. I was excited about it. It had great potential, terrible execution. The underlying themes, so very relevant and important could have made this a powerful book. West African mythology and culture? How cool, right? Sadly, it just fell flat.

Don’t even know where to begin. What I found most enjoyable was the setting. It was different from what most fantasy settings are like. It had a very strong Avatar: The Last Airbender vibe to it, which I thought was a bit too much. I thought it more than just toed the line between inspiration and imitation. The hybrid animals, the statues on the solstice… if you’ve seen TLA, you can’t miss these things and it’s a bit much. But it was still the most enjoyable aspect of the book. The magic was a bit vague, I still don’t really know how it works, but there was potential there for a cool magic system.

The story was a bit boring and cliche. Nothing new, nothing too excited, the ending was somewhat unpredictable though again… it was a little much. Because nothing that had happened before really led up to it, so it just felt like it was there for shock value. Overall, the plot was just… meh.

And that brings us to the worst part. The characters. With 2 exceptions, I hated or at most was indifferent to all of them. I liked one little girl whose name I can’t remember and who wasn’t in it for long and one guy whose name I can’t remember, who showed up towards the end. So you can imagine how much I disliked or didn’t care about these characters if I can’t even remember the names of the two characters I liked.

The four main characters were stupid, immature, whiny and obnoxious. I wanted to punch Zelie in the face every other page. She was stupid, impulsive, never thought about the consequences, thought she was always right and she was the most judgmental and hateful character. I know she’s meant to have been through a lot. But the book failed to make me care, basically. She didn’t come across as someone traumatised by oppression and an awful past. She just came across as a selfish, hateful child.

Amari was just… kind of tedious and insipid. I don’t have much to say about her besides that she was boring, uni-dimensional and just sort of… there.

Inan was inconsistent. He was meant to have this inner turmoil, existential crisis kind of thing going. But it was done so poorly that he just came across as mentally unstable.

Tzain was overbearing, self-righteous and just all around annoying. Also, kind of pointless to the whole plot? Like, I can’t think of anything that he actually did that made a difference to the story?

I won’t even get into the mess that the romances were because I could rant forever. I will limit myself to two words: insta-love. All the other relationships were kind of insta as well. Which is why I didn’t care about the friendships either. They just didn’t seem believable. These characters went from being mortal enemies to being bosom friends in like 3 days.

Overall, this book was just… not good. I’m not sure it deserved the two stars I gave it, but I guess even I’m not entirely immune to the diversity hype syndrome. It was not a good book at all, but it could have been. And I’m sad that it wasn’t. We don’t only need diverse books, we need good diverse books.

May 2018 Wrap Up

I thought I hadn’t read many books in May. It feels like I’ve hardly read at all. But looking back, I actually read 7 books. I mean yeah, to be fair some of these I’d started before May and one of them is super short, but still. I’m surprised.


The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy by Douglas Adams

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First book I finished in May and it was hilarious. I’d started reading this book years and years ago, but I didn’t own it until now, so I never finished it. I can honestly say it deserves its popularity. It was thoroughly entertaining, really just my kind of humour. Looking forward to reading the rest of the series. 5/5 stars.

Grey Sister by Mark Lawrence

This has quickly become one of my favourite series. I listened to the audiobook of the first one, Red Sister, in April and loved it and I listened to the audiobook of this one in May and loved it just as much. I absolutely do recommend the audiobooks for this, the narration is amazing. I am so upset that I have to wait until next year for book three cause this series is awesome. It’s about a magic warrior nun school… what more do you need to hear? 5/5 stars

Children of Blood and Bone by Tomi Adeyemi

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This book was sadly a massive disappointment for me. It was mediocre at best, I think it suffered from a bad case of diversity hype, where a book is hyped because it is diverse as opposed to based on its merits as a book. The characters were two dimensional at best, and they were all more or less the same character. I could often not tell who was speaking. I didn’t care about them, in fact they annoyed me, the relationships were rushed and unrealistic. The world was cool, but could have been much better developed and the story was… okay, but unoriginal to a fault. 2/5 stars

The Runaway King by Jennifer A. Nielsen

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I’ve been re-reading this series and it’s just as much of a delight the second time around. It’s clever, witty, fast paced and all around fun to read. It’s one of the more underrated series I’ve read. 5/5 stars

Harry Potter: The Prequel by J.K. Rowling

I’m not sure this really counts as a book, but for some reason, I’d never read the short story before. I managed to find it online and now I really want her to write that book.       😦 5/5 stars

Onyx and Ivory by Mindee Arnett

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Sadly, this book wasted a lot of potential. It had a cool and original world, it had elemental magic, it had some really interesting characters and the story had the potential to be suspenseful and gripping. Instead… instead it chose to focus on one relationship that was bland, uninteresting, completely lacking in chemistry, cringe-worthy and just all around boring. And I am so mad about it. Cause I wanted to know more about the interesting characters. I wanted them better developed. I wanted this story to be told better cause it had so much potential. I do not give two shakes of a rat’s behind about that stupid love story. SO MAD! 2/5 stars

Red Seas Under Red Skies by Scott Lynch

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Finally, FINALLY, I have finished this book! It took me like 6 months to finish it. But I’ve been in an adult fantasy mood lately and I finished it at last! It wasn’t as good as the first one, but I still really loved it. 4.5/5 stars

Book Haul

Children of Blood and Bone by Tomi Adeyemi | A Knight of the Seven Kingdoms by George R. R. Martin | Wonderwoman: Warbringer by Leigh Bardugo | Howl’s Moving Castle by Diana Wyne Jones | The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood

Looking for Alaska by John Green | The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks by Rebecca Skloot  | The Blade Itself by Joe Abercrombie | Beyond a Darkened Shore by Jessica Leake | Onyx and Ivory by Mindee Arnett

The Black Prism by Brent Weeks | Neverwhere by Neil Gaiman | Grace and Fury by Tracy Banghart | The Hero of Ages by Brandon Sanderson | A Court of Frost and Starlight by Sarah J. Maas