Fantasy Novel Review: The Silent Queen

Red Ribbon on BlackQueen Phoibe is crowned Queen by Zeus himself before her world changed forever.

Only minutes after she is crowned, the gods declared war on the humans, enraged that the Oracle of Delphi closed the bridge between Earth and their world. It’s Phoibe’s job to stop the gods and protect her people and she plans to do just that with the help of her two patron gods, Thanatos and Artemis. But first she needs to survive the terror raining down from the heavens.

I enjoyed this story for the most part. I thought it was a little slow starting and because it’s so short there wasn’t enough time for a lot of character development, although there will be a lot more of that in the books to come. This is part one of a series, after all. For the time being, though, Phoibe is a bit of a bland character. She’s a fourteen-year-old with all of the angst and none of the smart-ass remarks. I don’t understand why she has to be so young, either. Her character is way too mature for it to be believable. She’s probably the least relatable fourteen-year-old ever. Her entire character is like a Greek statue: dignified, beautiful, and inhuman.

Lantos, however, is fantastic. As Phoibe’s former childhood friend and a demigod, he is not to be trusted even though he saved her life by warning her of the war being declared. He has a smart mouth to be sure and I really wish he had a more prominent role in the story. About halfway through he is pushed out of a helicopter, though. (But he’s a demigod, so technically he’s still alive. My guess is he’ll show up in future books and eventually be the love interest).

While the writing isn’t bad, Lizzy Ford could take a couple of grammar lessons. She used one of my biggest pet peeves of all time: she used infer when she should have used imply.  Ugh. It took me a couple more paragraphs to actually get back into the story. This slip-up is really unforgivable because it’s Phoibe’s voice Lizzy is talking with, and it’s already been established that Phoibe is highly educated: she was born to be a queen after all. This really shows Ford’s incompetencey.

However, in all 10 thousand plus words of the story, there isn’t another error that glaring, so  with all said and done, the book is actually put together really well. And the story flows along smoothly. While I think some fantasy fans would enjoy this book and this series, I’ll probably not buy the next book. As much as I like the plot, the characters are too flat for me to really get into the book.

If you enjoyed my review, then please share it with your friends, or connect with me on Twitter. And if you’ve read The Silent Queen, then I would love for you to leave your opinion in the comments below. Thank you!

Why The Aerling Series Reminds Me of the Hunger Games

I just finished the first book of DelSheree Gladdens’s Aerling Series, Invisible. It is a science fiction story about Olivia and her invisible friend, Mason, who has lived with her and her family since she found him on the street when they were kids. She is the only one who can see him and it isn’t until they are in their final years of high school that they find out he is an Aerling, part of an alien race. Not only that, but he’s being hunted by Sentinels, who consider Aerlings impure, and if anyone finds out that Olivia found Mason on the street instead of him being assigned to her family by Caretakers, then they will take him away from her, and she is not ready for that, even though it will put her own life in danger.

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Why Luna Is The Most Important Read for Teens Since Catcher In the Rye

Luna Book CoverTwo years ago, my classmates and I talked about current gender roles in one of my social science class. The teacher asked the class if it was okay for boys to play with dolls, girls to ask out boys, and so on. For both questions listed, the majority of the class let out a resounding “No”, even though no one could really say why. (Best explanation: “It’s weird, okay?”) Even though this class is in twenty-first century America, where women can vote and girls do better than boys in most academic subjects, defined gender roles are still alive and well. If some teens can’t even comprehend a boy playing with Bratz dolls, then they probably can’t wrap their heads around a girl born in a boy’s body, or vice versa.

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Dark Secrets and Batshit Families

mar-kindle

Most kids see college as a huge adventure, and the last milestone before entering the “adult” world, or the last time they can have fun before they have bills to pay and they need to pay their dues in their fields. But for Paige Alexander, it’s just something to get through before she can disappear with her girlfriend Jess and escape the clutches of her affluent, tyrannical, and batshit crazy parents. It doesn’t help that she now needs to take therapy as long as she was in school, thanks to a suicide attempt and a promise to Jess. While trying to keep her homophobic roommate from knowing her secret, and trying to help her best friend who is stuck in an abusive relationship, Paige needs to come to terms with the family secret that had made her attempt suicide in the first place.

I wasn’t sure how much I would like this book because stories about teen suicides and suicide attempts can sometimes make me uncomfortable, but this story still had a lot of humor which lightened it up some (even though some of it was dark humor) and made it an enjoyable read. The characters were awesome. I think Jess was my favorite one. Being very outgoing, and into nights out at hole-in-the-wall restaurants and meeting people, her character was great contrast with Paige’s more awkward character, and the love story between her and Paige was very sweet. I would totally want Jess as my best friend.

I liked Paige mostly. The strong loyalty she has to her friends and even to her roommates makes her really likeable, and I like her sense of humor a lot too. However, I didn’t like her nearly as much when she decided to use Tom as straight cover. It annoyed me that she led him on like that, especially when she knew he was a nice guy and it seemed like he genuinely liked her. But that storyline got resolved quite nicely in my opinion, and I still like Paige a lot. I thought the storyline over all was very good and well-written, and I’d definitely recommend this book to anybody.

(Netgalley Book) Defy by Sarah Larson

If you’ve read my post about The Sanctum Book One: The Girl, then you know that I love badass heroines. And that’s one of the reasons I love Defy by Sarah Larson. That, and it was impossible for me to put down. (“I have to wash the dishes. I have to write. The dog is barking because someone is at the door. For the love of god put down the book already…. one more page.”)

In the kingdom of Antion, there are two places orphans will go: into the army, or into the Breeding Houses, depending on if you are a boy or girl. For Alexa, due to her ability to fight and her brother’s quick thinking, she was able to join the army by cutting off her hair and then later binding her breasts. Three years later, “Alex” is the best fight on Prince Damian’s personal guard. He would be captain, except he was too young to take on the role when he beat the current captain in a sparring match. Only his twin brother, Marcel, knows Alex is really a she, and they like to keep it that way. But when there is an attempt on the prince’s life and Alex is ordered to sleep in a room adjoining the prince’s for his safety, things start spiraling out of control. The prince shows her glimpses of his real self beneath his spoiled, shallow facade, and Alex finds herself falling for him. Not only that, but she’s attracted her her fellow guard, Rylan, and it isn’t long before it’s revealed that both of them know she’s a girl.

This book is really good. It was funny in some parts, and very suspenseful. I thought the love triangle was well-written, and the romance didn’t have much angst to it, but was still sweet, which I liked. I’d recommend this book to any fantasy lover, as well as someone who likes romance.

You can find Defy here: http://www.indiebound.org/book/

The Vampirates by Justin Somper

Most people have read books about vampires. And most people have read books about pirates. But there’s only one series about vampires who are pirates. Vampirates by Justin Somper is a series about two twins, Grace and Connor Tempest who sail away from the town they grew up in when their father died. But only a few miles off shore they get caught in a storm that tears apart their ship and separates them.

Connor Tempest finds himself on pirate ship where he becomes part of the crew, sailing under the pirate rebel, Captain Molucco Wrathe. He’s admired for his athletic ability and quickly becomes accepted by the crew.

But Grace finds herself on a ship where she is kept in the dark and secrets swarm around her. She finds herself sleeping an unusually large amount of time and is only visited by one person: Lorcan Furey, the boy who rescued her. But from her room she hears snatches of conversations about things that make no sense at all. But as her brother was gifted with athletic ability, Grace was gifted with intelligence and it doesn’t take long for her to piece together the truth: she’s on a ship full of civilized vampires, run by a mysterious captain who hides his face beneath a mask.

Somper makes a truly original story where pirates are friendly, and have a government of their own, and vampires live on a ship and feed on volunteers. The Tempest twins must battle a rebel uprising, secrets, petty rivals, and reunite with each other as they figure out the mystery of the vampirates and their father’s mysterious connection with them.

This story is perfect for anyone looking for an intriguing fantasy adventure, whether they like pirates, vampires, or both.

You can find the first book in the series here: http://www.indiebound.org/book/

Catching Fire Movie!!!

I don’t know about you, but I’m psyched for the new Hunger Games movie. I thought the first one did a great job with the books, and the books are, of course, amazing. Here’s a link to the teaser in case you haven’t already seen it. I thought it was awesome, and made the stupid mistake of watching it when in a public place. I’m sure I freaked people out by giggling like a maniac and jumping up and down, but it was late at night, I had just drank a couple cups of coffee and everything about the Hunger Games makes me really excited. I’m not crazy or anything. Anyway, the link: