Fantasy Book Reviews

ARC Book Review: Worldshaper

Worldshaper

Title: Worldshaper
Author: Edward Willet
Series: Book 1
Genre: Science Fiction, Fantasy
Publisher: DAW
Page Count: 400
Type of Book: ARC, Paperback, Netgalley Ebook
Review Word Count: 700
Rated: 5/5 stars
Notes:

I need book two now. Please.

Warnings: some harsh language, death of a horse, and a terrorist like murder at the start of the book, plus a terrible cliffhanging that leaves you wanting more

There is so much to love about this book. Like the fact it references Tolkien at least three times, if not more. Or perhaps the fact it referenced Doctor Who. Or maybe the fact that it’s got a sarcastic wiseass smartmouthed main female character who actually stops to think ‘what-if’ every once and a while. Or perhaps there’s the fact that there are so many interesting ideas in this book that it’ll make your world spin. (Sorry. Poor pun, but this book is full of puns and cliches similiar, and I couldn’t not pass that up.)

I really loved this book. Karl wasn’t my favorite character, but he eventually grew on me. I found him somewhat questionable, actually. The main bad guy known as The Adversary is a fascinating character that I sometimes want to strangle. What is it with people wanting complete and utter control over everything? He clearly didn’t have a good childhood.

There’s a lot to like in this book, but Shawna’s character is the best. I liked Brent, the few times he showed up (Shawna’s boyfriend) and I liked Aesha (cool name!) and her mother and all the characters, and the references to various fandoms that I just love. The Emerald City was mentioned a couple of times, as was King Arthur and his Knights, not to mention a favorite poet of mine Robert Burns as well as Robert Frost…

Seriously. There’s loads of references, terrible puns, sarcastic characters with witty remarks, cliche upon cliche. Edward Willet is fast becoming my favorite author. I have another book that I need to read of his called The Cityborn…where was I? Ah, yes, the book!

Imagine if you can shape worlds purely from your imagination. You’re only allowed to have a limited bit of power to shape those worlds, you can’t change yourself, and if you run out of power for good then that’s it, caput, the end. Such an intriguing idea! I wish that I could do such a thing! The only way that I can come close to that, however, is by writing.

Shawna is a Shaper, one that Karl believes is the most powerful Shaper in existence aside from Ygrair, a woman who sent him on a quest to fetch a powerful Shaper. To do what, I’m not entirely certain, as Karl is very cagey about what’s going on there. He explains everything to Shawna, who is apparently supposed to know all about this stuff already. For some reason, however, she’s blocked it completely from her mind. Karl, frustrated, tugs her along and helps her to escape the Adversary who wants to kill her so that he can completely control the world that she’s created without any sort of interference at all.

There’s much adventure within this book, plenty of fun and excitement. There’s scary moments for the characters, lots of life or death situations, and there’s also one scene where a horse is killed by accident. So if you’re a horse lover as I am, fair thee warning.

I was kinda reminded of the Magicians by Lev Grossman in regards to this book. While on a completely different scale, this book still had that same flare in regards to how imagination is used. I wonder if the author’s read the series, because there is a character named Julia towards the back end of the book too…

I really really enjoyed this book, and thank DAW tremendously for sending me an ARC. I finished it in four and a half hours, and hope to have book two soon because it left off on a terrible cliffhanger. I’m giving this book a well deserved 5/5 stars, and crossing my fingers that book two comes out soon!

Until next time,
-Pass Me That Book

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Paperback Book Review: Traitor’s Blade

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Title: Traitor’s Blade
Author: Sebastien de Castell
Series: 1 out of ?
Genre: Fantasy
Page Count: 370
Type of Book: Library Paperback
Rated: 4/5 stars

Traitor’s Blade took me by surprise. On the one hand, I loved the characters and the world that the book contained. It was a fun read, fast paced, gritty and full of sarcastic characters that those who follow my blog may know by now that I love sarcastic assholes. Especially funny, caring, tough but soft in the center sarcastic assholes.

This book started off strong, and just kept right on going. It didn’t pause in the plot, the action, or the death scenes-this guy clearly took a page out of George R. R. Martin’s book, because I swear it felt like a character died in every chapter. There’s torture involved, a particularly harsh scene with a horse at the end that made me cringe in sympathy and horror, and there’s even a girl that made my heart bleed due to her tragic backstory, and how she acted throughout the book.

The characters may have made the story, but I think it was really Falcio-the main character-who brought the story home. His sharp wit, his bitterness at the unfairness of the world, his don’t stop until you die attitude made me fall hard for his character.

My only real complaint was the end of the book, setting it up for book two. It wasn’t a strong cliffhanger that just cuts off abruptly, it did wrap things off, but there was a lot of unresolved issues, it felt like.

Still, I really loved this book, and was surprised at how much I wound up enjoying it. A lot of reviewers either loved it or found it lacking, some even giving it two stars. I think the story itself was a fine way to pass an afternoon.

Four and a half stars out of five.

Now that I’ve finished this book, however, I need another one. So,

-Pass Me That Book

{This review was posted on Goodreads and my blog at Pass Me That Book. You can find the link to my blog on my Goodreads homepage.}

 

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Paperback Book Review: Leviathan Wakes

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Title: Leviathan Wakes
Author: James S. A. Corey
Series: Book 1
Genre: Science Fiction/Space Opera
Page Count: 560
Publisher: Orbits
Rated: 4.5/5 stars!

Leviathan Wakes is an impossibly big monster of a book. It sucks you in and there is so much of it, that you keep reading and reading and wondering if there is ever going to be an end to it. But it’s also on hell of a fun ride!

It reminds me very strongly of Firefly, in regards to the crew. In regards to the plot, it kinda makes me think of that young ya novel called “Illuminae”, which was a lot of fun too, and this book has just as much casting if not more so. It makes George R.R. Martin’s killing off characters seem small in comparison as well, so don’t go getting attached to anyone.

The chapters alternate between two character POVS: Miller and Holden. At first, I was more interested in Holden, but towards the end I felt more for Miller than I did Holden. Usually I just stick with one of character pov, and be done with it, but apparently not this time. This time, I had to go back and read chapters that I skimmed over because I wanted my favorite character, and wound up missing things anyway.

This book’s plot is a monster of a thing. You won’t see things coming. Which makes it all part of the fun.

Though admittedly, I did get rather angry at the ending. I mean, really? That’s how this first book ends? I can’t say because of spoilers, but…come on! That isn’t how things are supposed to go! At least, that’s not how I wanted things to go!

The book is long, true. At 560 pages, it took me three and a half days to finish it, mostly in part because I had to go back and read over what I skimmed as well. It’s long, but it’s well worth it. You’ll find yourself laughing often, it’s got loads of humor, and plenty of sarcastic assholes as well-my type of characters.

We’ve even got Reavers zombies in this massive space opera drama, which made it even cooler and more fun than I thought possible.

I’m all for getting the second book, because if it’s as fun as the first one, then why would I want to miss out on it? Apart from length, this book earned every star I gave it which in total equals 4.5 stars. A very high rating, and well deserved!

I definitely look forward to these two authors writing as one, but in the meantime, I’ve other books to read too while I wait. So-

Pass Me That Book!

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Paperback Book Review: The Fifth Season

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Title: The Fifth Season
Author: N.K. Jemisin
Genre: Fantasy/Science Fiction
Publisher: Orbit
Page Count: 468
Rating: 4.5/5 stars
Type of Book: Library

If you don’t like books that swap between character povs, then this book probably will irritate you. But persist, and you will be shocked and rewarded and delighted at the end of the book. I cannot tell you without spoiling you, so I will make it so its harder to read and you can skip over it: the three characters are the exact same person who changes their name at different ages.

My favorite pov was Damara. She was, whole-heartedly, something new and fresh and original. I can’t say why I identified with her so much, only that I really, really got involved with her story. I spent the entire afternoon flipping through her chapters alone, and then when the book was done realized that I had to go back in order to fill in some of the blanks. I hate that about books, but it was also kind of fun doing that at the same time. For reasons above, see the spoiler as to why one has to go back and re-read the other characters to figure out what happens.

This book was different. It was new, and fresh, and original, and dealt with things in a new way. There were some things that I hated about it *SPOILER link* where Schauff breaks Damara’s hand just to see if she has control, for example.

Otherwise, this book wowd me, though it took a bit to do so to be honest. The writing was rather excellent, and this is the first NK book that I’ve read, and the first of a series. I don’t think I’ll read more of her books in this series, though I’m itching to test out The Hundred Thousand Kingdoms, as it sounds a bit more my speed.

I read this book in mostly one sitting, being interrupted once for dinner. I highly recommend giving it a go, and can definitely agree with the hype that this book received, and that it was well worth the Hugo and Nebula Awards that it won as well.

4.5 stars out of 5.

Until next time,
Pass Me That Book!

Also as a sidenote: I’ve included a new thing with the organization of each review, where I say ‘type of thing’ at the end of title and author and so on. ‘Type of Thing’ has many variations such as: library book, wattpad novel, amazon ebook, random find, paperback, hardback, etc…I’m still trying to be very organized when it comes to books, as you can clearly see.

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