Review: Black Wings Beating by Alexander London + Aesthetic Board

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Black Wings Beating by Alexander London
Genre: YA Fantasy, Fiction, Action, LGBTQIA+
Publication: September 25th 2018 by Farrar Straus Giroux
Series: Skybound Saga #1
Length: 432 pages
Format: ARC from BEA (borrowed from my friend, Miel)
Rating: ★★★★★

Amazon || Book Depository

The people of Uztar have long looked to the sky with hope and wonder. Nothing in their world is more revered than the birds of prey and no one more honored than the falconers who call them to their fists.

Brysen strives to be a great falconer–while his twin sister, Kylee, rejects her ancient gifts for the sport and wishes to be free of falconry. She’s nearly made it out, too, but a war is rolling toward their home in the Six Villages, and no bird or falconer will be safe.

Together the twins must journey into the treacherous mountains to trap the Ghost Eagle, the greatest of the Uztari birds and a solitary killer. Brysen goes for the boy he loves and the glory he’s long craved, and Kylee to atone for her past and to protect her brother’s future. But both are hunted by those who seek one thing: power.

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Review: Wildcard by Marie Lu

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Wildcard by Marie Lu
Genre
: YA Fantasy, Action, Adventure, Fiction, Virtual Reality, Gaming
Publication: September 18th 2018 by G.P. Putnam’s Sons Books for Young Readers
Series: Warcross #2
Length: 448 pages
Format: ARC from publisher
Rating: ★★★★★

Amazon || Book Depository

Emika Chen barely made it out of the Warcross Championships alive. Now that she knows the truth behind Hideo’s new NeuroLink algorithm, she can no longer trust the one person she’s always looked up to, who she once thought was on her side.

Determined to put a stop to Hideo’s grim plans, Emika and the Phoenix Riders band together, only to find a new threat lurking on the neon-lit streets of Tokyo. Someone’s put a bounty on Emika’s head, and her sole chance for survival lies with Zero and the Blackcoats, his ruthless crew. But Emika soon learns that Zero isn’t all that he seems–and his protection comes at a price.

Caught in a web of betrayal, with the future of free will at risk, just how far will Emika go to take down the man she loves? Continue reading “Review: Wildcard by Marie Lu”

Event Recap: The 2018 Manila International Book Fair + Book Haul

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Last Sunday, September 16th, marked the last day of this year’s Manila International Book Fair, and I was lucky enough to drop by SMX, not just to haul books but also to speak in a panel about international publishing! I had the most amazing time catching up with my friends, and getting stressed about what books to buy from National Bookstore’s Book Binge Bazaar, and even though I came home with a headache, sore arms, numb legs, I wouldn’t trade this experience for anything. Read on to know just how  much I enjoyed #MIBF2018!

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Review: The Belles by Dhonielle Clayton

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The Belles by Dhonielle Clayton
Genre
: YA Fantasy, Magic
Publication: February 6th 2018 by Disney-Hyperion
Series: The Belles #1
Length: 440 pages
Format: Finished copy from publisher
Rating: ★★★★.5

Amazon || Book Depository

Camellia Beauregard is a Belle. In the opulent world of Orléans, Belles are revered, for they control Beauty, and Beauty is a commodity coveted above all else. In Orléans, the people are born gray, they are born damned, and only with the help of a Belle and her talents can they transform and be made beautiful.

But it’s not enough for Camellia to be just a Belle. She wants to be the favorite—the Belle chosen by the Queen of Orléans to live in the royal palace, to tend to the royal family and their court, to be recognized as the most talented Belle in the land. But once Camellia and her Belle sisters arrive at court, it becomes clear that being the favorite is not everything she always dreamed it would be. Behind the gilded palace walls live dark secrets, and Camellia soon learns that the very essence of her existence is a lie—that her powers are far greater, and could be more dangerous, than she ever imagined. And when the queen asks Camellia to risk her own life and help the ailing princess by using Belle powers in unintended ways, Camellia now faces an impossible decision.

With the future of Orléans and its people at stake, Camellia must decide—save herself and her sisters and the way of the Belles—or resuscitate the princess, risk her own life, and change the ways of her world forever.

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Review: Mirage by Somaiya Daud

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Mirage by Somaiya Daud
Genre: YA Fantasy, Science Fiction, Adventure

Publication: August 28th 2018 by Flatiron Books
Series: Mirage #1
Length: 320 pages
Format: ARC from the publisher
Rating: ★★★★☆

Amazon || Book Depository

In a star system dominated by the brutal Vathek empire, eighteen-year-old Amani is a dreamer. She dreams of what life was like before the occupation; she dreams of writing poetry like the old-world poems she adores; she dreams of receiving a sign from Dihya that one day, she, too, will have adventure, and travel beyond her isolated moon.

But when adventure comes for Amani, it is not what she expects: she is kidnapped by the regime and taken in secret to the royal palace, where she discovers that she is nearly identical to the cruel half-Vathek Princess Maram. The princess is so hated by her conquered people that she requires a body double, someone to appear in public as Maram, ready to die in her place.

As Amani is forced into her new role, she can’t help but enjoy the palace’s beauty—and her time with the princess’ fiancé, Idris. But the glitter of the royal court belies a world of violence and fear. If Amani ever wishes to see her family again, she must play the princess to perfection…because one wrong move could lead to her death. Continue reading “Review: Mirage by Somaiya Daud”