Book Review: The Circus Rose

Hello Everyone,

Such a beautiful cover!

Title: The Circus Rose

Author: Betsy Cornwall

Series: Standalone

Genre: Fantasy, YA, Retelling

Publisher: Clarion Books

Published: 2020

Page Count: 300

Goodreads Summary:

A queer retelling of “Snow White and Rose Red” in which teenage twins battle evil religious extremists to save their loves and their circus family.

Twins Rosie and Ivory have grown up at their ringmaster mother’s knee, and after years on the road, they’re returning to Port End, the closest place to home they know. Yet something has changed in the bustling city: fundamentalist flyers paper the walls and preachers fill the squares, warning of shadows falling over the land. The circus prepares a triumphant homecoming show, full of lights and spectacle that could chase away even the darkest shadow. But during Rosie’s tightrope act, disaster strikes.

In this lush, sensuous novel interwoven with themes of social justice and found family, it’s up to Ivory and her magician love—with the help of a dancing bear—to track down an evil priest and save their circus family before it’s too late.

My Thoughts:

Magical, lyrical, told in two parts, one part being poetry and the other part being story this was beautiful, sad, enchanting and wonderful. Betsy Cornwall has won me over with her beautiful prose and elegant writing. Such strong characters though I admit to Ivory being my favorite compared to that of Rose. A retelling of Snow White, Rose Red this is one of my new favorites.

My Review:

I’m always a fan of circus stories. I’m sad that they are mostly gone now. The circus to me was always magical and exciting. I even tried joining one once but was unsuccessful. This book I put off reading for at least two, three years now, I devoured in a single sitting. It was half told in verse, split between two characters, Ivory (who was my favorite) and Rose. While I’m not a big fan of novels in verse, I still felt that this was handled well for a retelling of Snow White and Rose Red. While short, this definitely didn’t hold back it’s punches, in proudly displaying Rose and Ivory and their mother, all together struggling to get by daily. The characters felt so real it was as if I was there amongst them, enjoying the show.

This was one of the first YA books I’ve read in a while, and I’m so glad it was a high rating for me. I’m also glad that I own a physical copy. I hope to get through more of the authors backlist titles at some point though no clue when that will be. This book is recommended for those that want representation for bisexual characters, nonbinary characters, sapphic love interests and a satisfying ending.

My Rating:

⭐⭐⭐⭐

Until next time,

-Pass Me That Book

Library Book Review: White Smoke

Hello everyone,

Such a lovely cover.

Title: White Smoke

Author: Tiffany D. Jackson

Series: Standalone

Genre: YA, Paranormal, Suspense

Publisher: Harper Collins

Page Count: 400

Goodreads Summary:

The Haunting of Hill House meets Get Out in this chilling YA psychological thriller and modern take on the classic haunted house story from New York Times bestselling author Tiffany D. Jackson!

Marigold is running from ghosts. The phantoms of her old life keep haunting her, but a move with her newly blended family from their small California beach town to the embattled Midwestern city of Cedarville might be the fresh start she needs. Her mom has accepted a new job with the Sterling Foundation that comes with a free house, one that Mari now has to share with her bratty ten-year-old stepsister, Piper.

The renovated picture-perfect home on Maple Street, sitting between dilapidated houses, surrounded by wary neighbors has its . . . secrets. That’s only half the problem: household items vanish, doors open on their own, lights turn off, shadows walk past rooms, voices can be heard in the walls, and there’s a foul smell seeping through the vents only Mari seems to notice. Worse: Piper keeps talking about a friend who wants Mari gone.

But “running from ghosts” is just a metaphor, right?

As the house closes in, Mari learns that the danger isn’t limited to Maple Street. Cedarville has its secrets, too. And secrets always find their way through the cracks.

My Thoughts:

I had no idea that this was a ghost story as I went into this book as blindly as possible and was pleasantly surprised. When’s a better time to read a ghost story if not at Christmas, lol. Especially ones like this. It referenced paranormal activity and the haunting of hill house, both of which I am barely familiar with. The ghost story was well handled and I enjoyed the book. While the beginning is a bit slow paced of a family winning a house in a broken down neighborhood (which for me would have been major red flags); the parents in this story of course didn’t believe that the kids could see ghosts. Of which the ghost cliches in this book constantly made me laugh and wasn’t for me this book wasn’t scary but entertaining.

The ending though. I definitely wasn’t expecting that ending and am still feeling a book hangover like “what did I just read?”. I have no clue what to say and so it’s best not to say anything and let y’all read for yourself. It’s good writing, strong characters and all kinds of fun.

My Rating:

⭐ ⭐⭐⭐

Until next time,

-Pass Me That Book

Wattpad Read: The Dark Heroine

The Dark Heroine

Title: The Dark Heroine
Author:  Abigail Gibbs
Genre: Paranormal Romance
Page Count: 600
Publisher: Harlequin Teen
Review Word Count: 400
Type of Book: Friend Loan, Paperback
Rated: 3.5/5 stars
Notes: Well, that was a fast six hundred pages read.

First, thanks to my family friend who loaned me a copy of this book. It was one that’s been sitting in my ‘to-read’ bucket on Goodreads for ages, glad that I finally got it knocked out of the way and can move on to more other books that I’m super excited for. While I really enjoyed this one, I don’t think that it will be one of my favorites.

I found the characters made the story move along at a fast pace, rather than the plot. While the plot was interesting, I was more interested in the vampires and Violet. Kasper was easily the character I disliked the most, right along with Ilta and his father. I wasn’t fond of Kasper’s father, the Vampire King, either.

Violet was an interesting character. On the one hand, she was easily likeable, on the other hand she was a bit of a cliche of a character. Falling for the vampire prince, even though she didn’t want to? Becoming a powerful unique kind of person in the story? Making the vampires like her even though most think of her as ‘scum’. Simply because she’s human too, that’s one that I didn’t like at the end.

Actually, there were several things I didn’t like about the book. How Violet became accepting of the vampires killing to survive. How Violet handled most of the situations in the book-especially the one with Fabian, Kasper’s brother. There’s a lot of things that I didn’t agree with at all. And of course, it left things wide open for a book two. I did like the characters though. I think my favorite was little Thyme, because she was so cute for a little vampire!

I’m giving this a 3.5/5 stars because of the characters, and the slightly happy ending so that you don’t have to read book two if you don’t want to. Overall, it wasn’t one of the best books of the year, but it was a good book to read to pass the time.

Until next time,
-Pass Me That Book

Paperback Book Review: Glimmerglass

glimmerglasscover

Title: Glimmerglass
Author: Jenna Black
Series: Book 1/?
Genre: Young Adult, Fantasy
Page Count: 295
Publisher: St. Martin’s Griffin
Type of Book: Library, Paperback
Rated: 4.2/5 stars

“I was trapped in Avalon. My Aunt was hunting me, my dad was in jail, and the only people who seemed to be on my side were a pair of Fae teenagers I barely knew.”

Dana Hathaway is the main character of this book, with an alcoholic mom and a father she’s never known who is supposedly a powerful Fae that lives in Avalon, which is in England (I believe). Avalon is a magical place on Earth, in an alternate Earth, where there are two worlds that intersect-Fae and Mortal. Most mortals don’t know about the Fae, or don’t believe in them. Dana Hathaway knows, however, that she is not normal. She is a half breed-half human, half Fae, and that makes her a Fairiewalker.

This book reminded me very strongly of a couple of other favorite fae type stories: The Iron Daughter series by Julie Kagawa, and the Switched series by Amanda Hocking. I really enjoyed this book, though I did wish that the main character wasn’t quite so naive. She runs away from her mother after her mother embarrasses her at a voice recital, and flees to her father…never realizing that this might have consequences. For one thing, she winds up meeting her Aunt Grace who is not as she first appears, and then she meets Ethan and Kimber who are siblings, in another dangerous situation. There are many attempts made on her life, and the usual ‘why is everything and everyone trying to kill me’ trope.

Turns out, she’s wanted by all kinds of fairie; but especially wanted dead, if she can’t be controlled, or coerced to a certain side. She’s finally safe at her dad’s-seemingly, of course. She doesn’t trust him, not after everyone’s lied to her, tricked her, tried to kill her, and so forth.

Glimmerglass is a well written book, but the characters can be frustrating at times. My favorite character was easily Finn the bodyguard. Who reminded me very strongly of Artemis’s bodyguard in the book series Artemis Fowl by Eoin Colfer.

This is the first book of a series, which I didn’t realize upon snagging this from the library, but that’s fine with me-I get to read more of an interesting world filled with action, adventure, and intrigue-as well as the cliche’d romance, as well.

I highly recommend this series for all to read, because of its unique storyline, and interesting plot. 4.2 out of five stars!

Now,

-Pass Me That Book!

Book Review (2017): Archetype by MD Waters

IMG_20170501_2042257_rewind_kindlephoto-17708031

Hello all,

Welcome to another book review! This one is for Archetype, Book One of Two. Duology books are rare for me. It’s either a series, trilogy, or standalone. But this one was worth reading and now I need book two!

The cover is fairly accurate for the story. Emma wakes up, confused, lost, and uncertain as to what’s going on. She slowly recovers from an “accident” and has amnesia. I generally am not a fan of amnesia stories, but the author does a fantastic job with it here. This story has made me an instant fan of hers, especially the way she surprisingly weaved cool astronomy tales into it!

Emma’s mind is a jumble, but I like her inner self, who guides her in who to trust, what to say, and where to go. The sarcasm is flawless, and I give her five stars for the unexpectedly awesome humor throughout.

The plot wasn’t what had grabbed me, but the fact that it’s described as a “breathtakingly futuristic suspense”. Though the romance wasn’t overly heavy in the details, and those scenes were mostly past the halfway point.

Fans of joggers and running would like this book!

If I am missing anything else, it’s because I don’t want to spoil a truly unique reading experience. The author is a fabulous writer, and I highly recommend reading/buying the book asap.

Five stars!

Until next time,

-Pass Me That Book

Top Five Books I Want To Read Back in 2015!: Did I Read All These Books? 🤔

Welcome all!

I read over this post, saw that the images no longer worked, and found my choices interesting! These are the top books I wanted to read in 2015!:

1)

I have NOT read this one and I don’t think I ever will. I have read her other book Eleanor and Park, as well as the popular Fangirl. I’m just not much for YA fiction anymore. I mostly stick with adult fiction these days, though who knows? Y’all may change my mind.

2)

I have a confession to make. I haven’t read a single Colleen Hoover book. I don’t know why, but I just never picked them up. I highly doubt that I will now either!

3)

Finally! One that I’ve read and gave it 5 ⭐!!! I adore this book, and still have it on my shelf! Highly recommend for a good YA historical fiction!

4)

Also read this one! I gave it 4 ⭐, though I barely recall what this was about. I may need a reread!

And finally!

5)

LMAO, the first fantasy book on my blog is friggin Game Of Thrones. *dies laughing*. We who know nothing about when the last book will come out, I still haven’t finished this series because THE AUTHOR WON’T PUBLISH THE LAST BOOK!!! Sigh. But that’s another that I’ve read, so that’s not a bad ratio of 3/5. Nice job, me!

Well that was fun. I hope all of you enjoyed this trip down memory lane as much as I did. Let me know your thoughts on what books here you’ve read or if you think I ought to read the two I didn’t get to.

Until next time,

-Pass Me That Book