Review: Now I Rise by Kiersten White

Now I Rise was one of my most anticipated sequels of the year. I absolutely loved And I Darker, though I thought the series had room to grow and, boy, did it ever!

FINALLY. Lada, murderess extraordinaire, has ARRIVED.

The first book is so beautiful with the character’s childhoods and world building being super rich, detailed and well researched. And I had the same sort of enchantment with the writing in this book. Book two definitely has more of a focus on war, with Radu being sent of to put some feelers out in Constantinople, like, we’re on the edge of a big siege. Now, this would normally put me off, but it was still resolutely based in the characters more than anything.

While I really enjoyed Lada being present and ruthless, it was Radu’s sections that I was most engaged with. Honestly, I couldn’t really tell you what Lada was getting up to other than sticking her middle finger at anyone with biased gender expectations.

Radu was going through an emotional journey and I was here for it. BUT first of all, let’s take a moment to appreciate Nadzira aka. the unsung hero of this entire series. I would read an eight book series all about her, to be honest. Even though I hate Throne of Glass, I would compare her to Nehemia, in the way she’s got her finger on the pulse of scandal and knows so much more about the social and political situations that she’s got this air of regality that no one can overlook. Nadzira and Fatima are ultimate cuties, too.

Anyway, back to Radu, who, in book one, could be summed up with the phrase ‘Mehmed please love me’ but now he’s left to deal with his previous emotions, and do some serious re-evaluation. Does he want to be a pawn? Not really, but he’s still loyal to Mehmed. He wants to know what Lada’s up to, but he’s pretty sure she thinks he’s betrayed her, so… things are tricky. I won’t go into the plot of the actual book but you can tell that he’s between a rock and a hard place, so watching him grow in this restricted situation was wonderful. Also, there’s a potential new love interest for him, and I am really looking forward to seeing Radu happier in the future, so I can’t wait to see this slow burn!

Still, I’m really intrigued with where this story is going to go because now I feel like Radu has come to some sort of resolution, but Lada’s still got a lot to happen to her, so the next book will probably be a reversal of focus.

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Review: And I Darken by Kiersten White

cover86746-mediumAnd I Darken by Kiersten White
Genre: Fantasy, Re-telling (Alternate History?), Romance
Published by: Corgi Children’s
Pages: 484
Format: ARC e-book
Rating: ★★★
Note: We received this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

So far my experience of Kiersten White’s writing has been the Mind Games duology, which I enjoyed but didn’t think it did a very good job of explaining itself, but she’s a pretty prolific writer and there had been a bit of hype going around about this Vlad the Impaler-as-a-girl retelling and I admit, I got swept along with it too. And I Darken, if you didn’t already know, is the story of Lada (who I guess will grow up to become Lada the Impaler?) and her brother Radu moving from their home town to become part of the Ottoman empire. It’s a fantasy story with a strong emphasis or politics, religion and sexuality, all of which are seamlessly weaved into this bad-ass girl’s life story.

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Review: Mind Games and Perfect Lies by Kiersten White

12578294 12578370Mind Games and Perfect Lies by Kiersten White
Genre: Sci-fi, Thriller
Published by: Harper Teen
Pages: MG: 237, PL: 232
Format: e-book
Rating: ★★.5
Where to Find: Goodreads | Amazon

I read these books back to back because I had to know what happened next. I practically didn’t put them down! Thank goodness they’re each less than 250 pages because I could finish the series in one sitting. The first book Mind Games reminded me of a Saoirise Ronan film ‘Violet & Daisy’, which, although it’s a bit weird, I still really enjoyed. This was probably why I liked the first book so much because the sisters’ relationship in particular was reminiscent of the film.

Continue reading “Review: Mind Games and Perfect Lies by Kiersten White”