Book Reviews

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This Thanksgiving, I am grateful that I had time to do what I love: read. I finished two books and the book reviews are below.

Red Queen

I am a little late to the Red Queen party. An avid reader, especially of the fantasy genre, I am not sure how I did not discover Victoria Aveyard and her Red Queen series until now.

Worldbuilding is woven into the story beautifully, and the author reveals layers slowly for the protagonist and the reader. Mare is a flawed female lead, my favorite kind. Her heart and our’s swings between Cal and Maven. 

The magic in the story feels very real, and as I read the pages, I could almost feel my palm spark. The author has written an excellent cast of side characters to keep our heart rate up.

The plot moves at breaking speed and keeps the reader anxiously turning pages. The twists, while shocking, have enough hints through the books that you can see how it came to be.

I look forward to diving into the next book.

Warning: Gruesome deaths and battle scenes and violence.

Recommend for fantasy readers and game of thrones fans.

The Duchess War

I love Happily Ever After stories. When I saw Courtney Milan listed as NYT Best Selling author for her self-published novel, I had decided to read her books as a fellow author.

I started with The Duchess War like her web site recommended. 

A spunky girl pretending to be a mouse, and a big-hearted Duke who wants to do what is right, encounter each other behind a curtain, both hiding from the world. 

As the story evolves, the hiding behind feels out of character for both of them. 

The best character for me was Dowager Duchess. The author portrays her frailty in the early years, and the price she paid for her freedom and her struggles realistically. 

Mrs. Marshall, who appears just for a few pages, has a similar impact.

Sebastian and Violet spiced the pages and looking forward to their story in a later book. 

Overall, I understand the Duke’s reluctance to hope, but the pages don’t do justice to his character arc. Similarly, while I grasp Minnie’s fear, her story does not tug my heart.

That said, the story is fast-paced, and there is a happy ending and plenty of kissing.

Warning: Explicit sexual acts

Recommended for Downton Abbey fans.