Synopsis: This retelling of the classic “The Island of Doctor Moreau” focuses on the doctor’s estranged daughter, Juliet, who’s been left to pick up the pieces of her life after her father’s scandal takes everything from her. But when she accidentally bumps into her father’s old assistant, Montgomery, Juliet demands that he take her with him to the island so that she might be reunited with her father. But what Juliet discovers is more horrifying than any she could have imagined.
I thought that this book did a really great job of staying true to the original themes and ideas of the original story while still remaining fresh and exciting! The characters were nothing absolutely spectacular or incredibly original (in my opinion) but I think that the plot more than made up for that! I felt that the writing style went really well with the gothic, horror, romance theme. I thought this book was the perfect balance of creepy but not scary enough to keep me up at night! I loved it!
There aren’t many twists to the story that aren’t taken from the “The Island of Doctor Moreau”, so while I was reading there weren’t any terribly shocking plot twists. That being said I was surprised when Edward turned out to be the monster and Juliet chose Montgomery in the end, I always assume the girl’s going to choose the bad boy, I don’t know why? I still really really enjoyed reading this book and I can’t wait to find out what happens in the sequel!
Crooked Kingdom by Leigh Bardugo
SYNOPSIS: The sequel to Six of Crows and the final book in this duology follows Kaz and his crew after the disastrous ending of their heist in Six of Crows as they grapple with the demons of their pasts and fight for their futures.
This was a stunning conclusion to a duology that I really wish we had gotten more off! While I’m so sad the series is now over (my fingers are crossed for a spin off!!), I found that the conclusion was very satisfactory. It was a rollercoaster of emotion – I laughed, I cried, I never wanted it to end. But the way it did end made sense to me and was just solid enough that there were no lose ends but still allowed me to imagine what the characters were up to!
Ironically just before I read this book I was talking to a friend and said that if I had to pick any character to die it would be Mattias, because he was my least favourite character at the time (even though I still liked him). And then I read Crooked Kingdom and actually got attached to him and then he died! And I’m really upset about it! Still not as sad as if Inej, Kaz, Jesper or Wylan had died but I’m still upset! Poor Nina! They were all supposed to survive! I am very happy with how Inej and Kaz’s relationship progressed – I thought that in was logical and in character but still sweet, specially when he buys her contract, the boat and brings her family back! Kaz Brekker is officially one of my favourite male characters of all time! He’s so tormented, so angsty and still he doesn’t fall into the trope that Edward Cullins made so popular. Inej knows that’s he dangerous and that he’s a bad person, and while she still believes that he can change she doesn’t try to force him to do it. But my favourite relationship had to be Jesper and Wylan’s, I especially loved (to hate) the part when Jesper kissed Kuwui instead of Wylan by accident! I also adore the setting of this book, Ketterdam is a weird mix of fantasy and history, and also satisfies my slight craving for piratey, mob goodness. I found the brutality and unchecked harshness of it very appealing, because it proved that YA fantasy isn’t all rainbows and unicorns while not going overboard. This book is just as confusing and full of twists as the first book, every time I thought I had anything figured out, Leigh Bardugo turned me on my head once again. I could never guess what was going to happen! Overall it was a magnificent book, I belief that I do prefer Six of Crows to Crooked Kingdom but this duology will remain one of my absolute favourites for hopefully the rest of my life!
“Ink and Bone” by Rachel Caine
SYNOPSIS: This book takes place in a world where the great library of Alexandria never bring down and now the library is the most powerful institution in the world! The main character Jess, who comes from a family of book smugglers, is chosen to train to become a librarian. But all is not as it seems…
I didn’t love it but I liked it enough to read the other books in this series. (Note: I didn’t know it was part of a series when I started reading 😜)
For a book about libraries it had both more and less action than I was expecting. Maybe that’s because both the plot and the action were different than what I had in mind going into this book. It was a little slow at the beginning but about a 1/3 to 1/2 of the way through the plot picks up. I didn’t think that the plot was incredibly original or shocking but it was well executed and the world was original. I have never before read a book that centred around both the issue of absolute authority and power as well as having that authority be a library, which are generally viewed as benevolent in both our society and the one in the book. The idea of knowledge is power is taken to the extreme in this novel and its an idea that i thoroughly enjoyed exploring.
There were things that I both liked and disliked in this book. I found the explanation of the technology confusing and vague which didn’t help immerse me in this world. That being said I did like the world this story took place in, it was very reminiscent of the world we live in today but just different enough to be interesting at the same time. I loved the concept of an institute having too much power and that institute being a library. This really challenged the concepts of knowledge is power, absolute power, and the value of human culture vs. human lives. I found the two main characters, Jess and Morgan, a little bland and didn’t have strong feelings about them – Morgan especially. I felt that I didn’t know anything about her, probably because the author was trying to make her mysterious, but it just made me not care about her. For me this also made the chemistry between Morgan and Jess non-existent, and I was not a big fan of their relationship. It felt like Insta-love to me and that it existed just for the sake of romance. I also thought that the end of their relationship/ their fight was just as unnecessary and cliche. On the other hand I was a big fan of Wolfe and Santi’s relationship, and both of their characters. I would love to see more of them in upcoming books, and hope that they remain together and alive! Next to them my favourite characters were Thomas, Dario, Khalila and then Glain. At first I really disliked Dario and Khalila’s relationship but by the end of the book I had come to accept it. I thought each of these four characters had more depth and layer than Morgan or Jess. Thomas was my favourite and I was (still am) utterly crushed that he died! I’m hoping that it’s not actually true and that he’ll somehow appear in the later books. I found the very ending (the last page) a little anticlimactic, it was a weak cliffhanger but I am desperate to see what happens to Wolfe, Santi and Dario (my remaining favourite now that Thomas is dead).