Review: Nevernight (The Nevernight Chronicle #1) by Jay Kristoff

Release Date: July 25th 2016
Published By: Harper Voyager
Goodreads: Add it to your reading list
Purchase: Click here to purchase

Rating: 5 out of 5

Synopsis: Destined to destroy empires Mia Covere is only ten years old when she is given her first lesson in death.

Six years later, the child raised in the shadows takes her first steps towards keeping the promise she made on the day that she lost everything.

But the chance to strike against such powerful enemies will be fleeting, so if she is to have her revenge, Mia must become a weapon without equal. She must prove herself against the deadliest of friends and enemies, and survive the tutelage of murderers, liars and demons at the heart of a murder cult.

The Red Church is no Hogwarts, but Mia is no ordinary student. The shadows loves her. And they drink her fear.

ReviewNevernight was one of my most anticipated releases of 2016, so did it live up to my very high expectations? Hells yes it did!

The short version of my thoughts about Nevernight is this: IT IS BLOODY AWESOME!!! Run out to get yourself a copy. Don’t walk, RUN! This is book is filled with so much awesomeness that I cannot form proper words!

Jay Kristoff is a beloved Aussie author, and following the success of Illuminae, everyone had high expectations of this book. But this book is not Illuminae, but it certainly holds its own ground on every level. I am a fan of Jay’s, not just because of his previous work, but as a person. He is honest, down to earth and absolutely hysterical (follow him on Twitter to see what I mean). He doesn’t hold back in his thoughts and opinions, and this book is everything, and more, that I expected from him. It encompasses everything about him and his amazingly twisted creativity. From the vivid imaginary to the brutality of this world, Jay does not hold back on creating a full and complex world filled with everything from first lust/maybe-love, to blood and gore, revenge, conflict and sacrifice. This book is as complex, raw, honest and funny as I would have expected from Jay. During a conversation with a friend I said “if you read this book without knowing who the author was, you would pick Jay as the author”. That isn’t saying it is predictable in any way, it is saying that it is a 448 page book of what I would expect from this amazing author: world-building, amusement, abruptness, complexity, mystery, quirkiness, bloodshed, intricacy, secrecy, darkness and one absolutely amazing ride! (and a few Jay Kristoff-isms thrown in there too).

This book had me hooked right from the start, with a phenomenal first chapter that is clever, intriguing and somehow sucks you right in! As the pages go on, you find a dark world filled with luscious detail. This is masterful storytelling my friends! The past and present are masterfully weaved together, with little pieces of the puzzle coming together in due course. And the footnotes throughout this book are sometimes relevant to the storyline, sometimes funny antidotes – literally some laugh out loud moments are to be found within these little gems.

The storyline is intricate and dark, with a fierce and determined protagonist, Mia. Mia deeply misses what has been ripped from her, and this fuels her desire for revenge. From the age of ten years old when Mia was pulled away from her life of privilege and hiding from the very people who murdered her father, she has been training to become an assassin. Now at sixteen, she has finally found her way to The Red Church, a training facility for the best of the best, in the hopes of becoming one of the few that survive the training and become the ultimate assassin, a Blade.

The training is not for the weak of heart or stomach. It is brutal and only the sharpest, quickest and most cunning will survive. And even survival does not guarantee that one becomes a Blade. This is everything Mia has dreamt of since she was child, and she will do whatever she needs to do to make sure it happens. She is determined to become a Blade so that she can extract her revenge on those who killed her father and stole her mother and brother away from her. Her only reason to be here is become a Blade, and while at The Red Church she seeks comfort from the shadows that are always there, she tries to keep her distance from the possibly-would-be-allies within the walls of The Red Church, she is ruthless, cunning and utterly determined to make her dream a reality. But hidden secrets, plots and betrayal within The Red Church may change Mia’s life forever.

Never flinch. Never fear. Never forget.

To be honest, I cannot form the words to accurately describe the awesomeness that is Nevernight. I just can’t do it justice, and my brain can’t even try, it is still fan-girling over this AMAZING book!

And that cover! OMG – that cover!!!! The Aus/UK cover is beyond stunning; it is filled with beauty, intricacy, mystery and darkness. It perfectly showcases the amazingness on what these pages contain.

Without getting into the debate on whether this book is YA or not, as YA is subjective, let me say this: this is a fantasy book that does contain some graphic content. Personally, I loved the frankness of it all, but if you classify swearing as “gosh darn”, or if you consider graphic deaths as “she shot an arrow into his heart” and you think that sex scenes should fade to black, then this is not the book for you. Jay does not hold back, his descriptions are vivid and detailed; with lots swearing, stabbing and blood and gore, and sex scenes that could make some blush (bravo Jay for these scenes by the way!). If you want your adult themes to be like an episode of Neighbours or Home and Away then this book will shock you. It is brutal, it is upfront, it is completely honest… and I loved it!

Nevernight is amazing first instalment into this new world with lots of blood, inner-turmoil, courage, despair, treachery and hope – along with a few OMG moments, luscious writing and fantastic twists that will keep you furiously reading page after page and leave you desperate for the next book.

After finishing Nevernight, my only thoughts were really “holy shit that is amazing!” – and a few other profanities to go along with it. And to be honest, a few weeks after reading it, my thoughts are still the same. The random words that keep running around my head when trying to form sentences about this book include: Phenomenal. Bad-ass. Brilliant. Vengeance. Stab. Epic. Betrayal. Amazeballs. Murder. Dark. Assassins. Intense. Fantastic. Blood. Cats. Violence. Tremendous. Fierce. Brutal. Heartbreak. Shadows. Heart. Delicious. Fucking-amazing!

Basically, I absolutely adored everything about this book! Besides the fact that it put me in a huge reading funk and now I just don’t know how other books could possibly compare. Nevernight is epic. This is easily the best book of 2016! I know the year isn’t over yet, but I cannot foresee anything topping the awesomeness that is Nevernight.

 

 

 

 

Pokemon Go Book Tag

 

Hello everyone! So apparently Pokemon Go has overtaken mobile phones, lives and brains all over the world! I have to admit, I don’t know much about it personally, but I have been tagged by Julia @ Picnic Reads to do the Pokemon Go Book Tag!

The Pokemon Go Book Tag was created by Aentee @ Read at Midnight, and all graphics in this post were made and belong to Aentee (just so we are clear, I know nothing about Pokemon or creating graphics).

(more…)

Strange the Dreamer Samplers – 10 Things I Learnt

   

 

OMG! I have been ridiculously spoiled by certain someones, and I now have my little Laini Taylor obsessed hands on both the UK and US Strange the Dreamer samplers!!!

Now I don’t normally read samplers, because I find that they are nothing but dirty teases – but of course I was going to read these… and this is what I learnt.

(more…)

Review: Glass Sword (Red Queen #2) by Victoria Aveyard

Release Date: February 11th 2016
Published By: Orion  (UK/Aus) / HarperTeen (US)
Goodreads: Add it to your reading list
Purchase: Click here to purchase

Rating: 3.5 out of 5

Synopsis: Mare’s blood is red – the colour of common folk – but her Silver ability, the power to control lightning, has turned her into a weapon that the royal court tries to control.

The crown calls her an impossibility, a fake, but as she makes her escape from the prince and friend who betrayed her, Mare uncovers something startling: she is not the only one of her kind.

Pursued by the Silver king, Mare sets out to find and recruit other Red and Silver fighters to join in the struggle against her oppressors.

But Mare finds herself on a deadly path, at risk of becoming exactly the kind of monster she is trying to defeat. Will she shatter under the weight of the lives that are the cost of rebellion? Or have treachery and betrayal hardened her forever?

Review:  This review contains spoilers for the previous book in this series: Red Queen. You can read my review of Red Queen here.

I loved Red Queen – it was dark and edgy, with sass and action, so naturally Glass Sword was one my most anticipated sequels of 2016!

Sequels are always exciting! They can make the whole series a success, be the start of its demise, or anything in-between – and sadly, I think that Glass Sword is somewhere in-between.

(more…)

Instant Lookback

Hi everyone! Welcome to the another edition of Instant Lookback! This is where I show you the bookish pictures I have shared over on Instagram, as well as some links to recent posts.

I may post all my pictures, I may only post a few… so if you don’t want to miss out on any, come follow me over at Instagram @ kristy_book_nerd!

I know, I know, I have been MIA lately. Work is once again ruining the fun stuff in life, and sadly it will for a little while longer! I am hoping to get back to some normal reading and blogging routine soon, but sadly not yet.

But I have been ridiculously spoilt recently… I have received and read some amazing books, including Nevernight by Jay Kristoff – so much love for this book), and most importantly, some samplers of Strange the Dreamer!!!! Yes, there was fangirlling and squealing involved, and I cannot tell you how grateful I am to amazing people across the globe who conspired or were inspired to get these to me – love you all!

This is also going to be a big edition, as I will post my pictures from the #AusYAChallenge that I failed to finish, as well as some pretty books, and of course, Strange the Dreamer samplers!

I hope you enjoy this edition of Instant Lookback! Instant Lookback is a weekly meme bought to you by Brett Michael Orr.

 

(more…)

Review: The Last Good Day of the Year by Jessica Warman

Release Date: May 19th 2016
Published By: Bloomsbury
Goodreads: Add it to your reading list
Purchase: Click here to purchase

Rating: 3.5 out of 5

Synopsis: Ten years ago, in the early hours of New Year’s Day, seven-year-old Samantha and her next door neighbor, Remy, watched as a man broke into Sam’s home and took her younger sister, Turtle, from her sleeping bag. Remy and Sam, too afraid to intervene at the time, later identified the man as Sam’s sister Gretchen’s much older ex-boyfriend, Steven, who was sent to prison for Turtle’s murder.

Now, Sam’s shattered family is returning to her childhood home in an effort to heal. As long-buried memories begin to surface, Sam wonders if she and Remy accurately registered everything they saw. The more they re-examine the events of that fateful night, the more questions they discover about what really happened to Turtle.

Master storyteller Jessica Warman keeps readers guessing in this arresting page-turner.

Review:  Late into the night on New Year’s Eve 1986 a sleeping 4 year old Turtle (real name Tabitha) was kidnapped from the basement of her home where she slept with her 7 year old sister Sam and Sam’s best friend Remy whilst the neighbourhood adults partied upstairs. Sam and Remy pretended to be asleep but saw the man in the Santa costume come into the basement and grab Turtle. And yes I will admit that the similarities to the JonBenet Ramsay case did come to mind when I was reading this.

(more…)

Guest Posts and Reviews – New and Wanted

 

Hi everyone. Book Nerd Reviews is starting to bring you guest posts/reviews!

(more…)

Review: And I Darken (The Conquerors Saga #1) by Kiersten White

Release Date: June 28th 2016
Published By: Delacorte Press (US) / Corgi Childrens (UK/Aus)
Goodreads: Add it to your reading list
Purchase: Click here to purchase

Rating: 4.5 out of 5

Synopsis: NO ONE EXPECTS A PRINCESS TO BE BRUTAL.

And Lada Dragwlya likes it that way. Ever since she and her gentle younger brother, Radu, were wrenched from their homeland of Wallachia and abandoned by their father to be raised in the Ottoman courts, Lada has known that being ruthless is the key to survival. She and Radu are doomed to act as pawns in a vicious game, an unseen sword hovering over their every move. For the lineage that makes them special also makes them targets.

Lada despises the Ottomans and bides her time, planning her vengeance for the day when she can return to Wallachia and claim her birthright. Radu longs only for a place where he feels safe. And when they meet Mehmed, the defiant and lonely son of the sultan, who’s expected to rule a nation, Radu feels that he’s made a true friend—and Lada wonders if she’s finally found someone worthy of her passion.

But Mehmed is heir to the very empire that Lada has sworn to fight against—and that Radu now considers home. Together, Lada, Radu, and Mehmed form a toxic triangle that strains the bonds of love and loyalty to the breaking point.

Review:  There are a few ways to get me excited about a book, and they include a gorgeous cover, tell me it is historical fiction and promise intrigue and brutality. And of course, put Kiersten White’s name on the cover! So And I Darken pretty much had me from the very beginning.

I am a big fan of Kiersten. And even though she has ruined unicorns for me forever, I still adore her and her work. And while it is exciting when an author you love brings out a new title, it is always a little scary – what if you don’t love this book as much as the others? What if you are disappointed after you have hyped it up in your own mind? So, excitement and fear aside, I entered this world with all, and no, expectations at all – and I was NOT disappointed!

(more…)

Review: A Court of Mist and Fury (A Court of Thorns and Roses #2) by Sarah J. Maas

Release Date: May 3rd 2016
Published By: Bloomsbury
Goodreads: Add it to your reading list
Purchase: Click here to purchase

Rating: 4 out of 5

Synopsis: Feyre is immortal.

After rescuing her lover Tamlin from a wicked Faerie Queen, she returns to the Spring Court possessing the powers of the High Fae. But Feyre cannot forget the terrible deeds she performed to save Tamlin’s people – nor the bargain she made with Rhysand, High Lord of the feared Night Court.

As Feyre is drawn ever deeper into Rhysand’s dark web of politics and passion, war is looming and an evil far greater than any queen threatens to destroy everything Feyre has fought for. She must confront her past, embrace her gifts and decide her fate.

She must surrender her heart to heal a world torn in two.

 

Review:  This review contains small spoilers for A Court of Thorns and Roses. Review for A Court of Thorns and Roses can be found here.

Excitement! A Court of Mist and Fury has arrived! OMG, another awesome Sarah J Maas book to devour! What could go wrong??

Well, a few things actually.

(more…)

Review: Passenger (Passenger #1) by Alexandra Bracken

Release Date: January 25th 2016 (Aus) /January 5th 2016 (US)
Published By: HarperCollins (Aus) / Disney Hyperon (US)
Pages: 486
Goodreads: Add it to your reading list
Purchase: Click here to purchase

Rating: 3.5 out of 5

Synopsis: This journey is only the beginning…

In one devastating night, violin prodigy Etta Spencer loses everything she knows and loves. Pulled back through time to 1776 in the midst of a fierce sea battle, she has travelled not only miles, but years from home.

With the arrival of this unusual passenger on his ship, privateer Nicholas Carter has to confront a past that he can’t escape and the powerful Ironwood family who won’t let him go without a fight. Now the Ironwoods are searching for a stolen object of untold value; one they believe only Etta can find.

Together, Etta and Nicholas embark on a perilous journey across centuries and continents, piecing together clues left behind by an enigmatic traveller. But as they get closer to the truth of their search, and the deadly game the Ironwoods are playing, treacherous forces threaten to separate Etta from Nicholas, and her way home, forever.

 

Review: Passenger is one of the biggest YA releases of 2016. Although I am not the biggest fan of time-travelling stories, I know that I was ridiculously excited for its release, after all, it is written by Alexandra Bracken who gave us the wonderful The Darkest Minds series, it promised us mystery, ships, deceit, longing, adventure, pirates and time-travel. And well… just look at that gorgeous cover!!!! Who wouldn’t be excited about this book?

(more…)

Review: Truthwitch (The Witchlands #1) by Susan Dennard

Release Date: February 23rd 2016 (Aus/UK) and January 5th 2016 (US)
Published By: Tor
Pages: 412
Goodreads: Add it to your reading list
Purchase: Click here to purchase

Rating: 4 out of 5

Synopsis: In a continent on the edge of war, two witches hold its fate in their hands.

Young witches Safiya and Iseult have a habit of finding trouble. After clashing with a powerful Guildmaster and his ruthless Bloodwitch bodyguard, the friends are forced to flee their home.

Safi must avoid capture at all costs as she’s a rare Truthwitch, able to discern truth from lies. Many would kill for her magic, so Safi must keep it hidden – lest she be used in the struggle between empires. And Iseult’s true powers are hidden even from herself.

In a chance encounter at Court, Safi meets Prince Merik and makes him a reluctant ally. However, his help may not slow down the Bloodwitch now hot on the girls’ heels. All Safi and Iseult want is their freedom, but danger lies ahead. With war coming, treaties breaking and a magical contagion sweeping the land, the friends will have to fight emperors and mercenaries alike. For some will stop at nothing to get their hands on a Truthwitch.

 

ReviewTruthwitch is the new fantasy series to hit the YA market with a bang! Filled with magic, intrigue, adventure and action, this is an exciting new series from Susan Dennard that will pull on your imagination and leave you wanting more.

(more…)

Instant Lookback

Hi everyone! Welcome to the another edition of Instant Lookback! This is where I show you the bookish pictures I have shared over on Instagram. I am also going to include some links to some recent posts as well, just in case you missed them :)

I may post all my pictures, I may only post a few… so if you don’t want to miss out on any, come follow me over at Instagram @ kristy_book_nerd!

So I have been a litle MIA lately. Some of it is due to work, some of it is due the amazing holiday I recently went on! I posted most of my holiday pictures on my personal Instagram account, but I posted some to the blog account, mainly bookish related pictures. One of the best things about travelling – books are everywhere! You may not understand the language they are printed in, but it is great knowing they are there!

This is also going to be a big edition, as I will post my pictures from the #AusYAChallenge – where I had to fit the whole month of March challenges into 12 days! I did it though :) I will do anything to support Aussie YA! So it will be a longer post than normal, but pretty much all pictures, and who doesn’t love looking at pretty bookish pictures?

So, enjoy this mammoth edition of Instant Lookback! Instant Lookback is a weekly meme bought to you by Brett Michael Orr.

 

(more…)

Feral Friday – Aussie Bibliophiles: are we shallow, impatient, tight or patriotic?

Hi everyone! It is time for another Feral Friday!

Feral Friday is more of an opinion piece… and well, lets be honest, I am full of opinions. But this time, I included yours, and would like to here more!

Are Aussie bibliophiles shallow, impatient, tight or patriotic?

(more…)

The Unexpected Everything Blog Tour + Giveaway!

Hello! And welcome to Book Nerd Reviews’ stop on the THE UNEXPECTED EVERYTHING Blog Tour!

 

The THE UNEXPECTED EVERYTHING Blog Tour will be hosted by some amazing Aussie bloggers, and there are a lot of amazing posts from Morgan Matson! Scroll to the bottom to ensure you know where every stop is, so you don’t miss a thing!

 

 

Welcome to the tour… I hope you enjoy!

 

(more…)

Daughter of Smoke and Bone tour of Prague – 2016 Edition

 

“Fairy-tale city. From the air, red rooftops hug a kink in a dark river, and by night the forested hills appear as spans of black nothing against the dazzle of the lit castle, the spiking Gothic towers, the domes great and small. The river captures all the lights and teases them out, long and wavering, and the side-slashing rain blurs it all to a dream” - Daughter of Smoke and Bone

.
Hi everyone. Back in 2014 I did my first every Daughter of Smoke and Bone tour of Prague post. I absolutely adored doing this this post because it brings two of my favourite things together – Prague and Daughter of Smoke and Bone.

As I returned to Prague this year, I thought I would bring you some more Prague pictures in a Daughter of Smoke and Bone series way. New pictures, new quotes, new related information.

As I have said before, I cannot describe Prague in any way that does it justice – but Laini Taylor certainly can! All quotes in this post are from the Daughter of Smoke and Bone series by Laini Taylor. If you missed my previous post, you can find it here.

(more…)