Snippet Sunday

Snippet Sunday is a writing meme created by Samantha @ Reed’s Reads & Reviews in which you share a snippet of your current writing project. It’s been forever since I’ve done one of these, but today I bring you the “unofficial official” synopsis for my Shaman Novel. This is the blurb that I’ve posted to my Camp NaNoWriMo profile, but it’s subject to change as I continue to edit the story. I hope to have the book ready for beta readers by June, but in reality it’s probably going to be more like August or September…
Since you guys are following my book/writing blog, I’m assuming you’re all readers, writers, or both. That means you probably know a thing or two about books and their blurbs, so please let me know what you think of mine in the comments! Does this synopsis make you want to read my book? Is there anything you don’t like about it? Any and all feedback is appreciated! 😉


Nico Deverow’s entire life is built on secrets, lies, and blood. His family built their fortune in blood money and poisoned their way to a seat on the Royal Mist Council, but Nico doesn’t belong in that life. Ancient murders, restless spirits, and the uncensored truth in everyone’s auras are all revealed to him through residual layers of energy, and no one can ever know about it. The second sight is a shaman power, and a Deverow with a shaman gift would kill his bloodline’s reputation completely. His mask is flawless as his family name decrees, but underneath he’s shattering. With no one to help him contain his powers, the magical drug called Bliss and the raiser sharp blade of a dagger become his only salvation. But when natural born healer Adam Rachadon discovers his abilities, Nico is given a choice: trust a shaman with a secret his family would kill him for, or refuse his offer of help and continue to live a lie.

Fear the Drowning Deep

Fear the Drowning Deep
“And with the melody came the unmistakable sound of water slapping against the rocks far below us, slowly eroding the foundation of Port Coire and everything I loved.”
-Sarah Glenn Marsh, Fear the Drowning Deep

Title: Fear the Drowning Deep
Author: Sarah Glenn Marsh
Pages: 304
Genre: Fantasy, Young Adutly, Historical Fiction, Romance, Mythology
Publisher: Sky Pony Press
Published: October 11, 2016
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Goodreads

Synopsis From Goodreads:

Witch’s apprentice Bridey Corkill has hated the ocean ever since she watched her granddad dive in and drown with a smile on his face. So when a dead girl rolls in with the tide in the summer of 1913, sixteen-year-old Bridey suspects that whatever compelled her granddad to leap into the sea has made its return to the Isle of Man.
Soon, villagers are vanishing in the night, but no one shares Bridey’s suspicions about the sea. No one but the island’s witch, who isn’t as frightening as she first appears, and the handsome dark-haired lad Bridey rescues from a grim and watery fate. The cause of the deep gashes in Fynn’s stomach and his lost memories are, like the recent disappearances, a mystery well-guarded by the sea. In exchange for saving his life, Fynn teaches Bridey to master her fear of the water — stealing her heart in the process.
Now, Bridey must work with the Isle’s eccentric witch and the boy she isn’t sure she can trust — because if she can’t uncover the truth about the ancient evil in the water, everyone she loves will walk into the sea, never to return.

My Rating: ☆☆☆☆☆

Fear the Drowning Deep is told through the eyes of the main character, Bridey, who embarks on a quest to figure out what is making her friends and family willingly walk into the ocean to drown. At the beginning of the book, Bridey is terrified of the ocean that surrounds her island home, and haunted by memories of the night her grandfather jumped from the cliffs with a smile on his face. She saw a ghostly creature riding the waves that night, and now that others in her village are vanishing, she believes that it might’ve returned to claim more victims. However, she is ridiculed because of her fear and belief in the supernatural and apprenticeship to the island’s only witch.
Bridey’s character arc is one of the most complex and well developed transformations that I have seen in a while. It is very interesting to see how the first and last scene mirror each other to demonstrate her transformation. The first scene shows her watching as a drowned girl is pulled from the water. She’s afraid to be so close to the water, but at the same time she can’t quite make herself walk away. The girl reminds her of her grandfather and the creatures that ride the waves at night. The last scene is a mirror image of the first. Bridey has made peace with the sea and its inhabitants, and she sits proudly beside her father on his fishing boat, far out in the water that she was once terrified to go near.
Bridey’s character is strengthened further by the setting of the story and the cultural beliefs that she has grown up with. The book is filled with words in Manx, (Bridey’s native language), and mentions of her village’s superstitions and traditions pop up throughout the story. These cultural influences provide backstory in little bits and pieces, rather than large chunks, and make Bridey seem more realistic. It’s easy to dismiss all of the bits of language and beliefs as a fantasy world out of Sarah Glenn Marsh’s imagination, but in reality, they are parts of history! Manx and the culture surrounding it were very well researched, and as far as I can tell, everything mentioned in Fear the Drowning Deep is historically true to the setting and time period.
The plot of Fear the Drowning Deep is very fast-paced, but that doesn’t detract from any other aspects of the story. The plot, character arcs, and world building blend together almost seamlessly, playing off one another so they form an almost perfect balance. Every plot point causes Bridey to grow as a person, and the world building creates a perfect backdrop for the events to unfold. It’s usually easy to say whether a book is plot driven or character driven, but Fear the Drowning Deep weaves the two together so that they are inseparable!
With its smooth writing style, strong character arcs, and fast-paced plot, Fear the Drowning Deep is a very quick and easy read! Just don’t start it when you need to be productive because it will catch your attention and hold it until you’ve read the very last page!

Daughter of Smoke and Bone by Laini Taylor | Spoiler Free Review

Daughter of Smoke and Bone Cover
“Once upon a time, an angel and a devil fell in love.
It did not end well.”
-Laini Taylor, Daughter of Smoke and Bone

Title: Daughter of Smoke and Bone
Author: Laini Taylor
Series: daughter of Smoke and Bone #1
Genre: young Adult, Fantasy, Romance
Pages: 422
Publisher: Little Brown Books
Published: September 27th, 2011
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Audio
Goodreads

Synopsis From Goodreads:

Meet Karou. She fills her sketchbooks with monsters that may or may not be real, she’s prone to disappearing on mysterious “errands”, she speaks many languages – not all of them human – and her bright blue hair actually grows out of her head that color. Who is she? That is the question that haunts her, and she’s about to find out.

When beautiful, haunted Akiva fixes fiery eyes on her in an alley in Marrakesh, the result is blood and starlight, secrets unveiled, and a star-crossed love whose roots drink deep of a violent past. But will Karou live to regret learning the truth about herself?

My Rating: ☆☆☆☆☆

Coming from someone who is sick and tired of romance over-riding fantasy plots in books, this five star review is high praise! I literally cannot find fault with this book!
The quote at the top pretty much sums up the basic plot. An angel and a devil fall in love, and things end badly, but there is so much more depth to this story!
Karou makes an awesome main character! She knows nothing about where she came from at the beginning of the story. All she knows is that she’s caught between two worlds. One is made of magic, teeth, and monsters; the other is made of humans who can never know the truth. Karou keeps her secrets by telling the truth in such a way that people think she’s lying, which is a nice change. It seems that most fantasy characters simply weave a web of lies, but Karou hides behind a mask of sarcastically spoken truth.
The world building in Daughter of Smoke and Bone is super complex but blends almost seamlessly! In the beginning, Karou is part of two worlds: “Elsewhere,” where she spent her childhood, and the human world. However, her two worlds end up colliding with a third world: Akiva’s angelic realm. I can’t really continue with this train of thought because spoilers abound, but the way in which the three worlds meet is written very well. I don’t think I’ve ever known a book to juggle three worlds as well as Daughter of Smoke and Bone.
Something interesting is the way in which the “big reveal” was written. For the majority of the first half of the book, Karou has no idea where she came from, and that question is eventually answered through what is basically a giant flashback to her past. This kind of seemed like a writerly copout to me, but it also worked well in the situation. It was a little confusing to jump into another time and setting for a few chapters, but I honestly don’t know how it could’ve been done differently without altering the plot in a big way. I would typically knock off a star for something like this, but the writing was good enough that I decided to let it slide.
As you can probably tell, this is one of those books that you can’t really talk about without spoiling everything, so I’ll go on and end my review here. Overall, Daughter of Smoke and Bone is an excellent read, and I definitely recommend that you have the second book ready to go as soon as you finish it because… talk about a cliffhanger!

Writing Up Wednesday #2: What Genre is Your Novel… or Does it Even Have One?

Writing Up Wednesday is a weekly writing link-up created by Lizzy @ The Bent Bookworm. This week the theme is “What genre is your novel… or does it even have one?”


My “shaman novel,” (currently code named flawless Cracked and Broken), is very… complicated. Teens are my target audience, but I think it could appeal to a certain kind of adult as well. My main characters are all between the ages of thirteen and seventeen for the most part, but the story does touch on some heavy issues like mental health and drug addictions, and it gets pretty darn dark in some places!
As far as a specific genre is concerned, I’m gonna call it a weird cross-over between fantasy, paranormal, and SciFi. It’s got magicians, shamans, demons, brownies, (the little pixie-like critters, not the chocolate things), goblins, ghosties, elementals, and all kinds of other things that inhabit the “Unseen”, which makes it super fantastical, but there’s also a giant plot twist that I am not going to tell you about that strays into the realm of SciFi. It’s kind of one of those crazy books that everybody sticks in a different genre but hopefully will appeal to several different audiences!

The Islands at the End of the World (spoiler free review)

The Islands at the End of the World cover

Title: The Islands at the End of the World Author: Austin Aslan Series: Islands at the End of the World #1 Genre: Young Adult, SciFi Pages: 384 Publisher: Wendy Lamb Books Published: August 5th, 2014 Format Read: Audio Find It On:

iBooksamazonGoodreads

Synopsis From Goodreads

Right before my eyes, my beautiful islands are changing forever. And so am I …

Sixteen-year-old Leilani loves surfing and her home in Hilo, on the Big Island of Hawaii. But she’s an outsider – half white, half Hawaiian, and an epileptic.

While Lei and her father are on a visit to Oahu, a global disaster strikes. Technology and power fail, Hawaii is cut off from the world, and the islands revert to traditional ways of survival. As Lei and her dad embark on a nightmarish journey across islands to reach home and family, she learns that her epilepsy and her deep connection to Hawaii could be keys to ending the crisis before it becomes worse than anyone can imagine.

A powerful story enriched by fascinating elements of Hawaiian ecology, culture, and warfare, this captivating and dramatic debut from Austin Aslan is the first of two novels. The author has a master’s degree in tropical conservation biology from the University of Hawaii at Hilo.

My Rating: ☆☆☆

Before I get into this, I have to say that I would probably give this a two star rating had I read it and not listened to the audio book. There are a lot of long passages of Hawaiian language, and I think it would have detracted from the story had I been trying to read the text. When I see a word I don’t know in a book, I usually end up googling how to say it because it bugs me until I know. That being said, the audio book made all the Hawaiian words sound Beautiful! It pulled me into the story rather than bringing me out of it because I wasn’t struggling to read words I’d never heard before.

The Plot:

The plot was very original! We’ve seen stuff like this before: worldwide power outage, people panic, economy shuts down, government is obviously keeping a massive secret, there’s lots of fighting, and alien attacks and biblical prophecies come into play. However, The Islands at the End of the World does a really good job of putting a new spin on things. Because it’s set in Hawaii, we become amerced in a new culture that adds to the mystery. Austin Aslan does a fantastic job of pulling you into the Hawaiian world and making you believe in the culture, and then he throws a massive plot twist into the mix that creates an ending you’ll never expect.

The Characters:

Ok… Several of the characters seemed a little flat to me, (Leilani’s dad for instance), but Leilani kind of makes up for it. First of all, she has epilepsy, and it’s not one of those things where the character has a medical disorder just for the sake of having a medical disorder. It does cause a couple problems, and it is relevant to the plot. The only problem I have with it is that Leilani’s dad tends to have a… somewhat downplayed reaction when Lei has an epileptic seizure. There’s one point where she wakes up, and he’s just like, “Hi,” and I was left going “Shouldn’t you be a little more concerned that the world is in chaos and your daughter just had a horrible seizure?!” I personally have a disorder where my adrenals don’t work, and I’ve had some pretty bad seizures before, and my parents are not exactly cool, calm, and collected when I come out of it… I also question some of the language used when Lei has a seizure. It’s referred to as “fits” a few times, and I think I remember reading somewhere that that’s not accurate. Epileptics can feel free to correct me in the comments if I’m wrong!

Why is this not a five star book?

•Several flat characters. •The thing with the Hawaiian language mentioned above. •Downplayed reaction to epileptic seizures. •Some awkward dialogue. •Possible incorrect medical language concerning epilepsy.

Why is this rated three stars?

•Hawaii makes for an interesting setting. •Cool new culture. •Epileptic character that isn’t just epileptic for the sake of being epileptic! •Original spin on an old plot. •Cool Hawaiian shaman people. •Hawaiian language sounds beautiful in the audio book. •An ending you’ll never expect!

Conclusion:

I will be reading the second book as soon as I find it! I did point out a lot of flaws, but quite honestly I didn’t notice those until I started taking notes for this review. The writing pulled me in, and held my attention until the end.

Share your thoughts?

Have you read The Islands at the End of the World? Do you want to read it? What are your thoughts on the use of foreign language in books and characters with medical disorders? Let’s chat in comments!

The Diviners by Libba Bray (spoiler free): NOT to be Read After Dark!

The diviners
“There is nothing more terrifying than the absoluteness of one who believes he’s right.”
-Libba Bray, The Diviners
Title: The Diviners
Author: Libba Bray
Series: The Diviners #1
Genre: Horror, Young Adult, Fantasy, Historical Fiction
Pages: 578
Publisher: Little Brown Books
Published: September 18, 2012
My Rating: ☆☆☆☆☆
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Goodreads

Synopsis From Goodreads:

Evie O’Neill has been exiled from her boring old hometown and shipped off to the bustling streets of New York City—and she is pos-i-tute-ly ecstatic. It’s 1926, and New York is filled with speakeasies, Ziegfeld girls, and rakish pickpockets. The only catch is that she has to live with her uncle Will and his unhealthy obsession with the occult.

Evie worries he’ll discover her darkest secret: a supernatural power that has only brought her trouble so far. But when the police find a murdered girl branded with a cryptic symbol and Will is called to the scene, Evie realizes her gift could help catch a serial killer.

As Evie jumps headlong into a dance with a murderer, other stories unfold in the city that never sleeps. A young man named Memphis is caught between two worlds. A chorus girl named Theta is running from her past. A student named Jericho hides a shocking secret. And unknown to all, something dark and evil has awakened.

My Thoughts: ☆☆☆☆☆

Want some creepy Halloween reading? You’re gonna love this!
The Diviners is unlike any book I’ve read before, and I’ve read a lot of books! The setting is New York City, 1926, but it’s fantasy! I’m not sure I’ve ever read anything with paranormal happenings that’s set in history. There are things like The Caster chronicles, but those show us history through flashbacks. This is actually set in 1926, and the world building is amazing! Actually, the writing is amazing throughout the whole thing! There are several narrating characters, (I believe I counted five???), and each point of view is separated by a chapter break. I was never confused about who was speaking as I am sometimes in Multi-POV books, but I do think it did detract from the story somewhat. Each of the characters had their own unique story, and we got a little more info about each character each time they got a turn at the mic, but I found myself caring about a few characters a LOT more than the others. It took a while to get that way, but towards the end of the book I found myself just wanting to GET BACK TO EVIE! BUT.. I have to give Libba Bray some credit here… She did a really cool thing, (there is probably a technical term for this that I am not looking up), with her characters and plot. Through those other narrating characters, we knew almost what was going on before Evie, who was the one trying to solve the mystery. It drove me insane because I thought I had the mystery solved and knew what was happening, and then what I had worked out in my head turned out to be wrong. It wasn’t completely off the mark, but it also wasn’t quite what I’d been thinking for the last 200 pages.
Now… Onward to why I said it’d be a good Halloween read… This book is seriously creepy, and it’s got some stuff in there that I normally would NOT read about. I didn’t quite know the extent of the ghost story when I picked it up, and I also skipped the prologue. i don’t typically skip prologues, but somehow I managed to scroll right past it in the Kindle book… If I had read the prologue, that would’ve been my warning flag to put the book down. I’ll read a lot of things when it comes to paranormal, but I draw the line at ouija boards, inverted pentagrams, and raising the devil. Tarot? Awesome! THAT board? Insert screaming emoji here!
Given a do-over where I knew more about the plot, I probably would never in a million years have read this book. I was 200 pages in before I figured out I’d skipped the prologue and made the connection to the creepy stuff, and by that point I was too hooked on the story to stop reading. My brain decided to associate whistling from the TV with the book for about a week, but I DID finish it! And I can’t justify not giving it five stars because it really was an awesome read.
At this point in time, I’m not sure if I’ll read the second book or not. The ending was a pretty big cliffhanger, so I’ll probably cave and read it eventually. This is a scheduled post, so if I decide to read it, you’ll see a review in a few days. And if I don’t read it, you will never hear about this series again…

Share your thoughts?

Have you read The Diviners? Do you want to read it now, or did my review scare you away? Let me know what you think in the comments, and I’d also really appreciate some historical fantasy suggestions!
From Cheyenne 🙂

The Raven King by Maggie stiefvater, (spoiler free): An Epic Ending For An Awesome start!

The raven king
“What a strange constellation they all were.”
-Maggie Stiefvater, The Raven King
Title: The Raven King
Author: Maggie stiefvater
Series: The Raven cycle #4
Genre: Young Adult, Mystery, Fantasy, SciFi
Pages: 400
Publisher: Scholastic Press
Published: April 26, 2016
My Rating: ☆☆☆☆☆
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Goodreads

Synopsis From Goodreads:

The fourth and final installment in the spellbinding series from the irrepressible, #1 New York Times bestselling author Maggie Stiefvater.

All her life, Blue has been warned that she will cause her true love’s death. She doesn’t believe in true love and never thought this would be a problem, but as her life becomes caught up in the strange and sinister world of the Raven Boys, she’s not so sure anymore.

My Thoughts: ☆☆☆☆☆
Y’all know how I was kind of disappointed with The Dream Thieves and Blue Lily, Lily Blue? This made up for it! It somehow managed to circle back around and wrap up all that five star awesomeness that The Raven Boys started!
I was hooked on The Raven King from chapter one. It picked up right where Blue Lily, Lily Blue ended, and not a word was wasted! From the get go there was a demon, a set of creepy triplets, and a couple nasty women after those amazing characters I’ve been raving over, and I was immediately pulled through plot twist after plot twist! That awesome character growth was still happening, but this time the plot rose up to meet it. And guys! The romance! My one true pairing actually happened! I won’t tell you anything else though because you have GOT to read this book! Lots of spoilers abound in my head right now, so I’ll just leave it at this: The Raven King was an epic finish to an awesome start with a sagging middle, and it was worth reading every page. I am glad I stuck it out with the middle two books, and I hope you will too.

You can follow these links to see my previous reviews for this series:
◦Book 1: The Raven Boys
◦Book 2: The Dream Thieves
◦Book 3: Blue Lily, Lily Blue

Share Your Thoughts:

Have you Read The Raven King? Do you plan to read it, or did the middle two books detour you? Share your thoughts in the comments!

Blue lily, Lily Blue by Maggie Stiefvater

Blue Lily, Lily Blue cover art
Title: Blue Lily, Lily Blue
Author: Maggie Stiefvater
Series: The Raven Cycle #3
Genre: Young Adult, Fantasy, Paranormal
Pages: 391
Publisher: Scholastic Press
Published: October 21, 2014
My Rating: ☆☆☆
Amazon:
iBooks
Goodreads

Goodreads Synopsis:

There is danger in dreaming. But there is even more danger in waking up.

Blue Sargent has found things. For the first time in her life, she has friends she can trust, a group to which she can belong. The Raven Boys have taken her in as one of their own. Their problems have become hers, and her problems have become theirs.

The trick with found things though, is how easily they can be lost.

Friends can betray.
Mothers can disappear.
Visions can mislead.
Certainties can unravel.

My Thoughts: ☆☆☆

Ok… I don’t really know what to say about this book! It was weirs? But amazing? And beautiful? And really creepy? And I like crazy characters? And I’m kinda confused?
I’m giving Blue Lily, Lily Blue three stars for basically the same reason that The Dream Thieves got three stars… It just didn’t really seem to carry the plot as well as the first book did. I have to say that these characters are some of the most awesomest, (that is totally a word for the purposes of this review), characters that I have ever seen in a YA fantasy novel, and I’ve read a LOT of YA fantasy novels! I’m a sucker for characters with depth, so I would love to give it four stars for that alone… BUT.. I can’t justify it.

The Writing:

The writing is still really beautiful, and it conveys the characters’ thoughts and feelings perfectly, but it’s kinda hard to follow in this book… It was pretty while still being simple in the previous books, but now it’s… overly pretty? It’s not that way throughout the whole book, but it definitely sticks out where that is the case.

The Plot:

Hmmmmmmm… tries to be not blunt
I’m not really sure how the plot of this book has anything to do with the plot of the rest of the series… I mean… Ok… There might be minor spoilers coming??? But it won’t totally ruin it because I’m about to give some plot events WAY out of context! Just skip down to the next heading if you don’t wanna risk it!
At the end of The Dream thieves, Blue’s mother disappears. I’m not saying why… Blue Lily, Lily Blue picks up right where that left off! It shows Blue and the boys searching for her, but then it detours, and strays off the path, and does a lil circle, and somehow manages to tie everything up nicely. There is a LOT of really crazy weird stuff in between, but the ending does redeem it! Everything gets wrapped up in this nice lil bundle for The Raven King to bring to an epic finish! And it better bring it to an epic finish because I have too much invested in these characters!

The Characters:

I already touched on this, but i just have to fangirl… These characters are SO real! I feel like they’re going to come out of the pages! And those arcs!
Blue: Blue is experiencing a crisis in this book, but you can still see the developement! This is her book, and her story, and her perspective on the world shaped by the first two books, and her perspective is.. quite an interesting one! And she is falling for a character who I didn’t think I’d want her with at the beginning, coughs and suddleypoints you in the direction of previous reviews, but I think maybe I like it just the tiniest bit now??? It’s growing on me!
Gansey: I thought Gansey’s character was SO flat and fake in The raven Boys, but he’s gaining some depth now! We’re starting to see some backstory, and it’s making me really want to like him! Still getting that shatter Me vibe though if you get my drift…
Ronan: NOT gonna fangirl! NOT GONNA DO IT! But he’s my favorite….. I have this thing for characters who are just really broken and have basically nothing left to lose, and that’s Ronan in a nutshell. I reeeeeeeally want him to turn around and do something awesome! But I’m afraid his heart is going to be broken before that happens and I don’t like it!
Adam: Adam’s right up there with Ronan in my book! He’s had probably the worst life of any of them, but he’s got a big role to play, I just know it! At least he better! And his character gets stronger and stronger in each book. He was SO quiet and kinda in the background at first, but now he’s a key player!
Crazy Girl: No, that’s not her real name… But i’m not telling you her real name because I want you to be as shocked as I was when you find out who she is! Just know that she’s crazy, and she sings demented songs about crowns and birds and blue lilies, and I love her because she’s crazy for the sake of being crazy! Plus, Maggie Stiefvater actually composed the music for the song, and it played at the end of the audio book, and I love it when authors make something specifically for their story like that! Maybe one day I’ll be musically talented enough to make a book soundtrack… One can dream!

Final Conclusion:

I loved it! But mostly because of the characters… I have got to find out what happens to these awesome people! The plot’s a little iffy at this point, but I think the last book is going to redeem it. I will be finishing the series because that ending was a major cliffhanger! I know an that one evil person from the first book and a new evil person from the second book were trapped in a cave together, and I think they woke up something NOT good! Maybe it’ll kill them and leave Blue and the boys to live happily ever after on the leyline? Yeah, right… Anyway… If you like awesome characters, and you enjoyed the first two books, you should read it. I think you’ll like how it ends up.

Book In A quote:

“Her aura is like yours—it’s blue,” he said. “The clairvoyant aura!”

“Is it?” She was going to be extremely annoyed if this was how she had gotten her name—like naming a puppy Fluffy.”
-Maggie Stiefvater, Blue Lily, Lily Blue

Starting NaNoWriMo2016!

Hey y’all! I have officially created my profile for NaNoWriMo2016! I did decide to go with Wishes for my project because a big chunk of the outline fell into place, and now I just really wanna write these awesome characters! Like it fell into place enough for me to write an official synopsis to post to the NaNoWriMo site, and that usually doesn’t happen till long after I’ve started writing! I think it’s a pretty darn good synopsis myself, but it could just be because I wrote it when I had a horrible sinus infection, was running fever, and couldn’t stop coughing… I don’t know… Y’all can read it and tell me if it’s completely horrible! Actually, come to think of it, this post is being written really late because said sinus infection is preventing me from sleeping, so it may be insane too… No more fever, but this cough is miserable, and I have become a mouth breather… Antibiotics are magical stuff though because earlier today I wasn’t quite convinced I didn’t have the Flu! Anyway, with my rant about being sick aside, here is the synopsis I’ll be working with for NaNoWriMo2016! Feel free to check out my profile too, and add me as a writing buddy! Also, if you’re a NanoNewbie, I’d love to mentor you along this crazy journey!

The Synopsis For Wishes:

This world is not made for them, or perhaps they are not made for this world. They have never been anything but “abnormal,” because they are the only ones with their eyes open enough to see the truth. They cannot blend in with all the royals, because their natures will not allow them to play their twisted games of power. They are shamans, mist born, able to see through all the lies. Their just children, really, each born with a gift, (or a curse), as some might call it. But they are strong, and they are wise, and they will fight for truth!
Nico Deverow can see the unseen, and yet he cannot see the one thing that might make it all worth it: his parents who died when he was only three. There is darkness inside him, and he can no longer numb it enough to keep from shattering. Adam has a light inside him, a star in stark contrast to his sisters cruel beauty. He only wants to heal, but perhaps he cannot heal one who does not wish to be healed. Ela is fire and ice together, constantly fighting a battle within her own heart. Diana just wants to be the golden girl-the perfect princess, the Bishop heir, at council gatherings and the innocently pure shaman at Adam’s side. Each of them has a purpose, because nothing is ever done without purpose, even in the Royal Court.

Are You Doing NaNo?

Tell me about your Projects for NaNoWriMo2016 in the comments! I’d love to know what you’re working on! And also, I could really use some plotting and outlining advice because i have awesome characters but am really struggling with the ending of this plot… And I’m signing off now because I reeeeeeeally need to sleep at least a little bit tonight since I have to correct my Algebra test tomorrow…

The Dream thieves by Maggie Stiefvater

The Dream Thieves “He was brother to a liar and brother to an angel, son of a dream and son of a dreamer.” -Maggie Stiefvater, The Dream Thieves

Title: The Dream Thieves

Author: Maggie Stiefvater

Series: The Raven Cycle #2

Genre: Young Adult, Fantasy, Mystery

Pages: 437

Publisher: Scholastic Press

Published: September 17, 2013

My Rating: ☆☆☆

Amazon

iBooks

Goodreads

Synopsis From Goodreads:

If you could steal things from dreams, what would you take? Ronan Lynch has secrets. Some he keeps from others. Some he keeps from himself. One secret: Ronan can bring things out of his dreams. And sometimes he’s not the only one who wants those things. Ronan is one of the raven boys—a group of friends, practically brothers, searching for a dead king named Glendower, who they think is hidden somewhere in the hills by their elite private school, Aglionby Academy. The path to Glendower has long lived as an undercurrent beneath town. But now, like Ronan’s secrets, it is beginning to rise to the surface—changing everything in its wake. Of The Raven Boys, Entertainment Weekly wrote, “Maggie Stiefvater’s can’t-put-it-down paranormal adventure will leave you clamoring for book two.” Now the second book is here, with the same wild imagination, dark romance, and heart-stopping twists that only Maggie Stiefvater can conjure.

My Thoughts: ☆☆☆

After my five star review of The Raven Boys, I was really hoping for a bit more out of the sequel. don’t get me wrong! The Dream Thieves is an AMAZING read, and I WILL be finishing the series, but I still ended up giving it three stars. Let’s analyze my reasoning and see what y’all think!

The Writing:

The writing of The Dream thieves is honestly what sealed the deal on that three star rating for me. The writing of The Raven Boys was tight! There was NO confusion about who was narrating at any given time, even though there were up to five points of view being shown. Every single word counted for something, and at NO point were you left wondering exactly why you just spent 30 minutes of your day reading that chapter. The Dream Thieves didn’t seem to have that tight writing style. It stays true to the characters and the series, but sometimes it almost became more like a decoration and less like a perfectly worded masterpiece. All the metaphors and descriptions are still beautiful and amazing and wonderfully full of things for me to learn from, but I did find myself flipping back a page a few times to see who was narrating. I guess the easiest way to describe the writing is that it had a dream-like quality, (pun totally intended), but I think that was meant to contribute to the plot of the story because so much of it took place in dreams. Oh don’t cringe over it taking place in dreams! These were dream scenes done right!

The Characters:

Oh my gosh the characters! Yeah… I thought I was over my fangirl stage, but no… These characters are just too amazing to be real! Oh wait… They’re not real… They’re just little bits of story! But if you’re a bookworm of any kind you will excuse my sleep deprived brain and know exactly what I mean! These characters are the kind of characters who seem like they should just come out of the pages and be real! And those character arcs…

Blue: Blue is undergoing a transformation, and I LIKE IT! She kind of had these preconceived judgements of people who I will not name at the beginning of the series, and I can see them slowly slipping away.

Gansey: Like I said before, I do not particularly care for Gansey’s character. It’s not because his character is badly written, but because of his personality, and I think that maybe he’s one of those characters that readers are supposed to love/hate until something major happens to make them drop everything and love them. Shatter Me ringing any bells for anyone??? anyway… I can kinda see him slipping a little into somebody I can’t help but love, especially in his interactions with other characters. He reeeeeally cares for Ronan and Adam and now Blue, and it is SO sweet when that shows through.

Ronan: Ok… Y’all know about my love for Ronan if you read my review of book 1, and that love didn’t lessen any after reading The Dream Thieves. In The Raven Boys, Ronan didn’t get much time at the mic, but his story really starts to show through in The Dream Thieves. We still have that multiPOV thing going on, but there’s a definite focus on Ronan. There were a few times where I kinda questioned whether certain things were true to his character, but for the most part I LOVED it! He went through a MAJOR transformation and admitted some stuff to himself and his friends that kinda shocked me, but now that it’s out I kinda feel stupid for not seeing it earlier… Let’s see if you can guess what it is!

Adam: Can someone please just pick Adam up and put his heart back together because oh my gosh! I almost cried a couple times! And I can’t even tell you why cause spoilers!!!

Noah: Noah didn’t get a whole lot of focus in this book, but he is definitely undergoing a transformation of his own, and I don’t know if it’s a good one or not. It makes sense for his character, but I have a feeling that it’s really going to destroy my little bookworm heart when he reaches the end of it.

Mr. Gray: Yeah! We have a new character! He gets some mic time, and he is quite intriguing! But he hurt Ronan so I hate him a little!!!

The Plot:

The plot structure was VERY tight, and there was no slow spot at the beginning like there was in book 1. It jumped right into the story, although the first chapter was a little metaphorical. I do think it worked for the opening though, and it definitely fits Ronan’s character. The Dream Thieves continued the trend of weaving the individual story of each character into the bigger picture, and it was done extremely well! I love watching all the stories intertwine and connect and fall into place like puzzle pieces right where I wasn’t expecting them to join. They’re woven so tightly together that you can’t have one story without the other without the plot falling flat somewhere. And the ending? The ending was a TOTAL cliff hanger that I will NOT spoil, but somebody goes missing… I feel like that should be followed by epic music but there is none…

In Short:

You’re probably all wishing I’d get to the point now, so… You should read it! But after you’ve read The Raven Boys! Don’t go starting in the midst of a series! EVER! The writing does get a little weird at times, but I think it’s a writing technique, and it doesn’t detract from the amazingness of the story enough to make it not worth reading! If you liked book 1, book 2 will only be a minor let down, and then you’ll get sucked into book 3 just like I am now! In fact, I am going to leave you to ponder over my review and leave me comments whilst I go read and then do algebra homework!

What are Your thoughts?

Have you read The Dream Thieves? Do you want to read it? Are you reading anything creepy for October? Tell me in the comments! Until next time… Happy spooky reading to all you bookworms! Oh come on… You know you’re reading something at least a little creepy! I’m thinking Three Dark Crowns by Kendare Blake is gonna be my next creepy read! If you’ve read it, share your thoughts on that as well! From Cheyenne 🙂