Posts Tagged: Mythology

Thursday, February 28, 2019

Breathes Life Into a Genre I Thought I Was Done With: We Set the Dark on Fire by Tehlor Kay Mejia

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Breathes Life Into a Genre I Thought I Was Done With: We Set the Dark on Fire by Tehlor Kay Mejia
We Set the Dark on Fire
Tehlor Kay Mejia
Series: We Set the Dark on Fire #1
Genre: Dystopia, Fantasy, LGBTQIAP+, YA
Publication date: February 26th, 2019
by Katherine Tegen Books

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In this daring and romantic fantasy debut perfect for fans of The Handmaid’s Tale and Latinx authors Zoraida Córdova and Anna-Marie McLemore, society wife-in-training Dani has a great awakening after being recruited by rebel spies and falling for her biggest rival. 

At the Medio School for Girls, distinguished young women are trained for one of two roles in their polarized society. Depending on her specialization, a graduate will one day run a husband’s household or raise his children. Both paths promise a life of comfort and luxury, far from the frequent political uprisings of the lower class.

Daniela Vargas is the school’s top student, but her pedigree is a lie. She must keep the truth hidden or be sent back to the fringes of society.

And school couldn’t prepare her for the difficult choices she must make after graduation, especially when she is asked to spy for a resistance group desperately fighting to bring equality to Medio.

Will Dani cling to the privilege her parents fought to win for her, or will she give up everything she’s strived for in pursuit of a free Medio—and a chance at a forbidden love?
-A copy was provided by Katherine Tegen Books for review-

Currently, I am staring at a blank document trying to figure out how words work because I am not entirely sure how to even begin to describe We Set the Dark on Fire? When I first started hearing about the book, I thought it was a fantasy but then my friend, Shannon said it was more dystopia so I really didn’t know what genre I was diving into. I did go in expecting some badass girls and I GOT SOME BADASS GIRLS.

Upon finishing, I think I can say that while this book isn’t like a futuristic sci-fic novel, labelling it dystopia is not wholly inaccurate. WHICH, if you like me stopped reading dystopia half a decade ago because it was all bland, I promise We Set the Dark on Fire is both gayer and better than any dystopia you have ever read.

At the Medio School for Girls are separated and trained for two seperate wife roles – Primera and Segunda. Primeras are cool and collected while Segundas are emotional. Daniela Vargas is about the graduate at the top of her class and be married into the most powerful family in Medio, but her future relies on no one finding out the truth – that she was born on the other side of the wall.

When Dani marries into the Garcia family as a Primera, she really doesn’t know what she is getting into. She certainly didn’t expect to have to continue dealing with Carmen – a girl who never missed a chance to put her down. AND SHE CERTAINLY didn’t expect a cold husband who is adamant on not letting her into his world. When Dani is approached with the chance to be a spy for the rebel forces, she isn’t sure she is ready to give up everything her parents worked so hard for. But the deeper she digs, the more committed she becomes to a free medio (and bringing down the motherfucking patriarchy.)

So Dani? She is one of the best characters I’ve had the chance to read about. I love that within the context of the novel, she is occasionally allowed to be selfish (when she isn’t ready to give up a safe future for an uncertain one.) I love that her bravery isn’t defined by fearlessness or overcoming fear. It is defined by her choosing to do things that make her afraid.

Carmen, the girl who was a bitch to Dani for ages, is equally well-written and I was here for the romance that blooms between the two. The shippy feels, my god, they were intense. I loved the softness between Carmen and Dani and just how good they are to one another.

The world is also very well developed. We start with the mythology and slowly move into the physical world. Honestly, I think a map would have helped a bit, especially of the main city? But that’s mostly because I love having visuals to help with physical spaces. THERE IS ALSO a bunch of food porn and I was here for it.

We Set the Dark on Fire has received a lot of hype already and I am here to tell you that the hype is not wrong. We Set the Dark on Fire is an incredibly powerful book and breathes life into a genre I was so SURE I was done with. If you’re done with the patriarchy and need a book about some badass girls, READ THIS BOOK.

4.5 Stars
4.5 Hot Espressos

Good to be Reunited With Some Beloved Characters: Star-Touched Stories by Roshani Chokshi

Good to be Reunited With Some Beloved Characters: Star-Touched Stories by Roshani Chokshi

Posted by on 08/28/2018 • 2 Comments

Roshani Chokshi has already earned herself a place on my auto-read list so it is unsurprising that even though I am a shit head who hasn’t read A Crown of Wishes, I still needed to read Star-Touched Stories. Chokshi has a distinguished writing style that just calls out to me, I guess.

Short stories set in a favorite world are always fun and I love how Chokshi really does somehow manage to bring the Star-Touched queen world to life even through this short snippets into the lives of beloved characters. WHICH. I know I’ve read Star-Touched Queen so I have some context but its been two years so I really didn’t remember much and yet, THE STORIES WERE SO WELL WRITTEN that I didn’t really need to remember…

The Anthology We Have Been Waiting For: A Thousand Beginnings and Endings

The Anthology We Have Been Waiting For: A Thousand Beginnings and Endings

Posted by on 07/04/2018 • 2 Comments

There have been so MANY amazing anthologies on my radar this year but A Thousand Beginnings and Endings might have been my most anticipated for the year. 

I’ve talked this about a lot so I sometimes feel like a broken record, but it is an important point and a huge part of my love and excitement for this anthology so it is worth repeating. I grew up without much rep which was weird and confusing. Obviously, this review is not meant to be an analysis of my trauma but even as a teen, this was so evident when I’d open all those angel/vampire books that were soaked in Christian and western myth. Myths I grew up on, or other people grew up where never part of mainstream media even though they…

The Book I Wish I Had When I Was in Middle School: Aru Shah and the End of Time by Roshani Chokshi

The Book I Wish I Had When I Was in Middle School: Aru Shah and the End of Time by Roshani Chokshi

Posted by on 03/14/2018 • 7 Comments

I never read Rick Riordan’s books. The short story is that there was no real reason to why I didn’t pick the books up. The longer (and a little pointless) story is that when The Lightning Thief first came out, it had a completely different cover then what it has now. I was in the middle school and our librarian told us all about it. I grew older but it stayed in the corner of my mind, I was in eternal search of the book with the white cover and never realized until a year ago (seriously!!!) that that book was the same one written by Rick Riordan that was so beloved now. Anyway, long pointless story short, I am weird and specific about what I read.

So I missed Rick…

ARC Review: Poison’s Kiss by Breeana Shields

ARC Review: Poison’s Kiss by Breeana Shields

Posted by on 12/02/2016 • 10 Comments

I am not entirely sure what I was expecting when I dove into Poison’s Kiss. I was hoping to like it because I was intrigued by the premise but even when I was excited to read it, a small part of me was worried that it would not do justice to my culture. As a story, Poison’s Kiss is fine. The romance is way too insta but it is engaging, there aren’t many plot holes and the characters are relatable. The world building is EXTREMELY lacking though. From the small things to the bigger, general things, the world building needs work and this book would have benefited from some Indian beta-readers who might have been able to help fine-tune some of those issues.

The rest of this review will…

Series Spotlight : Thrones & Bones Series by Lou Anders

Series Spotlight : Thrones & Bones Series by Lou Anders

Posted by on 05/26/2015 • 2 Comments

Today I am spotlighting the Thrones & Bones series by Lou Anders. It is getting closer to the publish date for the second book in the series, Nightborn. This is a fantastic MG series that I think many people will enjoy. I have not yet read the second book yet, but I am almost done with the first one, Frostborn, and am really enjoying it.

Frostborn is the first in the series, and so far it is great! The characters are interesting, but more than that, I love the visual imagery that I get from it. I can imagine the lands and the Giants, and everything that is going on. The story is wonderful and I am excited to continue on the adventure and see where…

Review: Destined by Jessie Harrell

Posted by on 11/15/2011 • 31 Comments

DestinedJessie HarrellRelease date: November 17th, 2011by Mae Day Publishing

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When Psyche receives a prophecy gone horribly wrong, she learns that even the most beautiful girl in Greece can have a hideous future. Her fate? Fall in love with the one creature even the gods fear.

As she feels herself slipping closer into the arms of the prophecy, Psyche must choose between the terrifyingly tender touch she feels almost powerless to resist and the one constant she’s come to expect out of life: you cannot escape what is destined. 

Destined is a fresh and heartachingly romantic retelling of the Cupid & Psyche myth from debut novelist, Jessie Harrell.

 *A copy was provided by Jessie Harrell for review purposes*

Since I read Percy Jackson earlier this year, I’ve…

Review: The Willows: Haven by Hope Collier

Posted by on 09/23/2011 • 4 Comments

The Willows: Haven (The Willows, #1) Hope Collier First published September 13th, 2011

When tragedy strikes, seventeen year-old Ashton Blake sets out on a cross-country road trip, leaving the comforts of Malibu for the mountains of Kentucky. Along the way, she encounters Gabe Willoughby—the mysterious drifter with eyes like the sea and a knowing smile. Getting to know Gabe raises questions about her past. But no secret can be buried forever, and Ashton soon finders herself in a world where water is air and myth becomes reality.

Just as Ashton comes to accept her newfound heritage, she’s summoned to fulfill a treaty laid down centuries before — a treaty that will divide her love and test her loyalty. In the end, her future isn’t her biggest concern, her humanity is….