Book Review: Be Not Far From Me by Mindy McGinnis

Book: Be Not Far From Me by Mindy McGinnis

Published March 2020 by Katherine Tegen Books|240 pages

Where I Got It: I borrowed the e-book from the library

Series: None

Genre: YA Contemporary

The world is not tame.

Ashley knows this truth deep in her bones, more at home with trees overhead than a roof. So when she goes hiking in the Smokies with her friends for a night of partying, the falling dark and creaking trees are second nature to her. But people are not tame either. And when Ashley catches her boyfriend with another girl, drunken rage sends her running into the night, stopped only by a nasty fall into a ravine. Morning brings the realization that she’s alone – and far off trail. Lost in undisturbed forest and with nothing but the clothes on her back, Ashley must figure out how to survive despite the red streak of infection creeping up her leg.

I am glad I picked up Be Not Far From Me!  I really liked Ashley’s story, and I really liked this book!

If you like survival stories, this is the book for you!  I’m amazed Ashley managed to stay alive, but if anyone could, I think it would be her.  She seemed pretty equipped to stay alive, and definitely spent enough time both hiking in the woods and being outdoors to know how to stay alive long enough to get find someone who could get her help.

I knew she’d survive- this is YA after all, but I really liked seeing how she survived, alone in the forest, with an infection creeping up her leg.  I’m pretty impressed she got out of the forest relatively okay.  She has a long road to recovery ahead of her.

The fact that she went through a lot trying to get out of there…I don’t know know that I would have been able to do what she did in order to save herself.  Her recovery isn’t going to be just a physical recovery, but an emotional/mental one as well.

The writing was beautiful and you could tell in the way Ashley thought about the forest.  It was clear she had a lot of respect for the forest and nature and the circle of life.  It was clear she understood nature does what it does, and that the world is not a tame place to live.

The great outdoors is her home away from home, but in her time trying to get back home, she does realize that home is a pretty important place to be.  She realizes a lot, because she has a lot of time to think and appreciate what she has back at home.  I’d probably feel the same way if I were her.

Ashley was pretty easy to relate to, and I thought she handled everything pretty well.  I’m not sure I would have handled it that well, but I’m also not the hiking in the woods type.  I did like that about her, though.  It seems to fit her pretty well, and I think it’s pretty cool she’s into hiking.

I also really admire that she wanted to go back and find her former camp counselor.  I’d like to think I’d go back and get him, just so his family has closure but I think it would also terrify me after going through what she went through.  Ashley is pretty awesome, and she is most definitely a survivor.

4 stars.  I really liked Be Not Far From Me, and I especially liked the moment the title made sense.  It really fits what Ashley went through to survive.

 

Book Review: The Gravity Of Us by Phil Stamper

Book: The Gravity Of Us by Phil Stamper

Published February 2020 by Bloomsbury UK|352 pages

Where I Got It: I borrowed the e-book from the library

Series: None

Genre: YA Contemporary

In this smart, heart-warming YA debut perfect for fans of Becky Albertalli and Adam Silvera, two teens find love when their lives are uprooted for their parents’ involvement in a NASA mission to Mars.

Cal wants to be a journalist, and he’s already well underway with almost half a million followers on his FlashFame app and an upcoming internship at Buzzfeed. But his plans are derailed when his pilot father is selected for a highly-publicized NASA mission to Mars. Within days, Cal and his parents leave Brooklyn for hot and humid Houston.

With the entire nation desperate for any new information about the astronauts, Cal finds himself thrust in the middle of a media circus. Suddenly his life is more like a reality TV show, with his constantly bickering parents struggling with their roles as the “perfect American family.”

And then Cal meets Leon, whose mother is another astronaut on the mission, and he finds himself falling head over heels–and fast. They become an oasis for each other amid the craziness of this whole experience. As their relationship grows, so does the frenzy surrounding the Mars mission, and when secrets are revealed about ulterior motives of the program, Cal must find a way to get to the truth without hurting the people who have become most important to him.

I really liked The Gravity Of Us!  I was intrigued, of course, but also not sure if I would like it.  I am so glad I picked this book up!

I really liked Cal, and what I felt for him.  Especially with everything that happened with Kiera, who seemed so cool at first.  But she ended up not being as cool as I thought she would be, and what she did was pretty horrible.  And his life changed because of his dad’s desire to be an astronaut.  Who didn’t want to be an astronaut as a kid, though?

Life definitely wasn’t perfect in Houston, and not how reality t.v. made it seem.  He made fast friends with Leo and Kat, and overall, I liked seeing how the whole community came together to make the Mars mission happen.  There were a lot of ups and downs, of course, and Star Watch really took things out of context.  That wasn’t surprising at all, and it felt very realistic.  I loved how Cal stood up for Mrs. Bannon, and that overall, he wanted people to see things how they really were.  I’d definitely follow Cal, if he were a real person.

I loved that it was about keeping NASA funded and getting to Mars!  I don’t pay attention to NASA enough, but with reading this book, I felt really excited that they got to see people travel to Mars!  I can’t help but wonder if that’s what it was like when we went to the moon decades ago.

I really liked seeing that Cal’s family wasn’t perfect.  Leo’s family wasn’t perfect either, but I felt like this book really highlighted that things aren’t what they seem, and that we put people on a pedestal only to tear them down.  It was sad that this mission almost lost funding because of some things that came out about this particular mission.

Cal worked so hard to make things right, and it really made me believe in this mission and what they were trying to do.  There were so many people involved in making this happen, and I didn’t want anyone to lose their dream or their job because of some pretty terrible people.

I thought the romance was really cute, and I like Leo and Cal together.  I really hope it works out for them and that Leo figures out what he wants to do.  I’m also hoping things work for Cal, and that he gets to be the journalist he wants to be.

4 stars.  I really liked The Gravity Of Us, and I really recommend it, especially if you like cute romances or space!

Book Review: Woven In Moonlight by Isabel Ibanez

Book: Woven In Moonlight by Isabel Ibanez

Published January 2020 by Page Street Kids|384 pages

Where I Got It: I own the hardcover

Series: Woven In Moonlight #1

Genre: YA Fantasy

A lush tapestry of magic, romance, and revolución, drawing inspiration from Bolivian politics and history.

Ximena is the decoy Condesa, a stand-in for the last remaining Illustrian royal. Her people lost everything when the usurper, Atoc, used an ancient relic to summon ghosts and drive the Illustrians from La Ciudad. Now Ximena’s motivated by her insatiable thirst for revenge, and her rare ability to spin thread from moonlight.

When Atoc demands the real Condesa’s hand in marriage, it’s Ximena’s duty to go in her stead. She relishes the chance, as Illustrian spies have reported that Atoc’s no longer carrying his deadly relic. If Ximena can find it, she can return the true aristócrata to their rightful place.

She hunts for the relic, using her weaving ability to hide messages in tapestries for the resistance. But when a masked vigilante, a warm-hearted princess, and a thoughtful healer challenge Ximena, her mission becomes more complicated. There could be a way to overthrow the usurper without starting another war, but only if Ximena turns her back on revenge—and her Condesa.

I liked Woven In Moonlight!  The description and the cover caught my attention, and I’m glad I read it!

I don’t know if it’s just me, but I feel like arranged marriage is starting to become a thing in YA fantasy.  Granted, characters aren’t actually getting married.  I can definitely think of a few books where characters are sent to the court of someone they’re supposed to marry.  For the most part, it’s not being demanded that they come to court to get married or their people will be destroyed.  This book is not as subtle where that is concerned.

The decoy Condesa concept was interesting.  I don’t get how Ximena’s people don’t know that she’s not the real Condesa.  Was she hidden away her whole life and no one knew what she looked like?  That was a little strange to me, but there’s nothing I could do about it.

I did like seeing how Ximena went from wanting the real Condesa on the throne to Atoc’s sister being on the throne.  The real Condesa didn’t make a big impression on me, to the point that I can’t remember her name. I do get why she felt betrayed by Ximena but I also get why Ximena acted the way she did.  Things aren’t what Ximena thought, and what she grew up knowing and experiencing as an Illustrian were completely different than Atoc’s people experienced.  Though I didn’t like Atoc, or agree with how he did things, something about how his people were treated seemed very familiar.

I liked how Ximena’s weaving came to life, and how the moonlight changed things in her pieces.  I crochet, so I definitely appreciated the work Ximena put into her craft.  I loved seeing the different animals from her tapestries on the cover, which is really beautiful.  It makes me wish I could see the tapestries in person.  The cover is partly why I picked this book up- the colors are pretty and bold but also muted.

Things felt very resolved, but it also felt like there is the possibility of a sequel.  I’d be interested to see where a sequel would go and the story it would be.  I could definitely think of a few directions it could go and I’m curious to see what life is going to be like for all of the characters.

3 stars.  I liked Woven In Moonlight, though I couldn’t begin to tell you why I didn’t love it.  Still, I can’t wait to read what Ibanez writes next!

Book Review: Nameless Queen by Rebecca McLaughlin

Book: Nameless Queen by Rebecca McLaughlin

Published January 2020 by Crown Books For Young Readers|352 pages

Where I Got: I borrowed the hardcover from the library

Series: None

Genre: YA Fantasy

One girl must make a name for herself–or die trying –in this royal fantasy where an unknown peasant becomes the ultimate ruler. But how long can she keep the crown if everyone wants her dead? Perfect for fans of Furyborn, Red Queen, and Everless.

Everyone expected the king’s daughter would inherit the throne. No one expected me.

It shouldn’t even be possible. I’m Nameless, a class of citizens so disrespected, we don’t even get names. Heck, dozens of us have been going missing for months and no one seems to care.

But there’s no denying the tattoo emblazoned on my arm. I am queen. In a palace where the corridors are more dangerous the streets, though, how could I possibly rule? And what will become of the Nameless if I don’t?

I thought Nameless Queen was okay.  I really wanted to like it more because I really liked the idea.  I definitely had my issues with it.

One of the things I didn’t like was how fast the book moved.  It looks like this is a stand-alone, and I felt like there was too much going on for it to be a stand-alone.  You definitely get an idea of the history and what Coin’s world is like but there’s so much that could be explored.  Like the divides between the Nameless, the Legals and the Royals.  There’s so much more that could have be described and focused on, and I really felt like we were getting the Cliff Notes version.

The book was just so short, and just when I really started to get into it, the book was over.  I really did assume it would be a series, because most fantasy series are in YA, and this book was too short for me.  I wish Nameless Queen was a little longer, just because there were things I wanted to know more about.

I am curious about Esther and why she didn’t say anything about her tattoo when her father died.  I know she knew a lot more than Coin, who didn’t get why or how she was chosen when she didn’t know her name.  And even though everything becomes clear later on in the book, it was still strange that she didn’t speak up about it.  I get why she didn’t but I still thought it was weird.

I did like Coin, but I especially liked her relationship with Hat.  I don’t know why, but it reminded me of Katniss and Rue.  I love what she represented, and how she was a voice for all of the Nameless- those on the outskirts of society, who didn’t have rights or say in things.  She was definitely aware of it too, and how much leverage she had.

I also wanted to know more about the magic in this world, and how it worked.  I could not tell you how it worked, or why it needed to be restrained.

Basically, the theme of this review is that I wanted more information than what we got.  It’s sad, because there are some really good ideas and something longer would have helped expand on those cool ideas.

2 stars.  Nameless Queen was okay and I really wanted more from it.

Book Review: Nocturna by Maya Motayne

Book: Nocturna by Maya Motayne

Published May 2019 by Balzer + Bray|480 pages

Where I Got It: I own the hardcover

Series: A Forgery Of Magic #1

Genre: YA Fantasy

Set in a Latinx-inspired world, a face-changing thief and a risk-taking prince must team up to defeat a powerful evil they accidentally unleashed.

To Finn Voy, magic is two things: a knife to hold under the chin of anyone who crosses her…and a disguise she shrugs on as easily as others pull on cloaks.

As a talented faceshifter, it’s been years since Finn has seen her own face, and that’s exactly how she likes it. But when Finn gets caught by a powerful mobster, she’s forced into an impossible mission: steal a legendary treasure from Castallan’s royal palace or be stripped of her magic forever.

After the murder of his older brother, Prince Alfehr is first in line for the Castallan throne. But Alfie can’t help but feel that he will never live up to his brother’s legacy. Riddled with grief, Alfie is obsessed with finding a way to bring his brother back, even if it means dabbling in forbidden magic.

But when Finn and Alfie’s fates collide, they accidentally unlock a terrible, ancient power—which, if not contained, will devour the world. And with Castallan’s fate in their hands, Alfie and Finn must race to vanquish what they have unleashed, even if it means facing the deepest darkness in their pasts.

I liked Nocturna!  I’m definitely intrigued to see what will happen next but I have some mixed feelings about it.

The magic system seemed really interesting but I wanted to know more.  I definitely felt like it could have been explained a little more because it didn’t make a lot of sense to me.  I got the general idea of how it worked but…I felt like we could have gotten a little bit more.  I always want to know more than what we’re given, though.

And I had a hard time getting into Nocturna.  I tried reading it once before, but I had to put it down, with the intention of coming back to it later.  Obviously, I did come back to it later, but I wasn’t in the mood for it when I first tried to read it, and I thought I was going to have to do it again.  I just really struggled with it, especially at the beginning.

I did like it, and the further I got into the book, the more I liked it.  I did get more interested, so if you’re having trouble getting into it, just keep with it.  It did get better, at least for me, but I know everyone has different stopping points, so what worked for me might not work for you.

Alfie and Finn were interesting, though I did like Finn’s chapters a little bit more.  Don’t get me wrong, I felt for Alfie and how insecure he felt about being the heir to the crown after the death of his brother.  But I really liked reading Finn’s chapters.

With her ability to faceshift…I can’t  help but wonder what effect that had on her.  I mean, you’re always looking like someone else, and never like your true self.  I feel like it would be easy to lose yourself in your ability to look like someone else.  Sometimes, I think it would be a cool ability to have but everything has good and bad with it.

I don’t know how I feel about the ending.  I know there are more books, so I do want to know what will happen next, but the book felt pretty wrapped up.  There’s definitely more story you could do in this world, but with this story being pretty resolved, I’m not sure where the story will go.

3 stars.  I liked Nocturna, but I wanted to know more about the magic and how it worked.

Book Review: The Map From Here To There by Emery Lord

Book: The Map From Here To There by Emery Lord

Published January 2020 by Bloomsbury YA|368 pages

Where I Got It: I borrowed the hardcover from the library

Series: The Start Of Me And You #2

Genre: YA Contemporary

Acclaimed author Emery Lord crafts a gorgeous story of friendship and identity, daring to ask: What happens after happily ever after?

It’s senior year, and Paige Hancock is finally living her best life. She has a fun summer job, great friends, and a super charming boyfriend who totally gets her. But senior year also means big decisions. Weighing “the rest of her life,” Paige feels her anxiety begin to pervade every decision she makes. Everything is exactly how she always wanted it to be–how can she leave it all behind next year? In her head, she knows there is so much more to experience after high school. But in her heart, is it so terrible to want everything to stay the same forever?

Emery Lord’s award-winning storytelling shines with lovable characters and heartfelt exploration of life’s most important questions.

I loved The Map From Here To There!  Her books always get me emotionally, and this book was no exception.  I’m definitely glad I read this book!

I loved seeing Paige and Max deal with things.  And they deal with a lot of things in this book.  There’s a lot of ups and downs for them, and things did not go how I expected them to.  I really hope that things are okay for them, if not now, then in the future.

Paige had so many big choices to make- it’s her senior year, and college is looming over her.  Deciding which school she wants to go to, and which degree she wants to get.  Max is a pretty big factor in her decision, and I think it’s a big reason why there are so many ups and downs for them.

It really did bring me back to my senior year, and wondering what was going to happen.  There’s a lot going on for Paige- personally, with Max, with her friends…it felt very real, and me being me, I couldn’t help but cry my heart out, especially towards the end.  I really felt for Paige, and I loved being there for every part of her journey.  I could definitely relate to the anxiety she felt, and Emery Lord did a great job at showing what Paige was thinking and how she dealt with it.

Even though this book is a sequel, you can read it without reading The Start Of Me And You.  I hadn’t re-read it prior to reading this one, and I can honestly say that you know what happened before but you can still follow the story.  It’s a great book, and I do recommend reading it first.  I think Paige will make a lot more sense and have a greater impact if you read The Start Of Me And You first.

Part of me wishes I had re-read it first but I can’t do anything about that know.  Either way, I loved this book, and it’s worth reading, especially if you like contemporary!

5 stars.  I loved this book, and I can’t wait to see what Lord writes next!

Book Review: Gone Rogue by Marissa Meyer

Book: Gone Rogue by Marissa Meyer

Published January 2019 by Square Fish|336 pages

Where I Got It: I own the paperback

Series: Wires And Nerve #2

Genre: YA Graphic Novel

The world of the Lunar Chronicles comes alive in this thrilling continuation of Wires and Nerve. Iko–an audacious android and best friend to the Lunar Queen Cinder–has been tasked with hunting down Alpha Lysander Steele, the leader of a rogue band of bioengineered wolf-soldiers who threaten to undo the tenuous peace agreement between Earth and Luna. Unless Cinder can reverse the mutations that were forced on them years before, Steele and his soldiers plan to satisfy their monstrous appetites with a massacre of the innocent people of Earth.

And to show he’s serious, Steele is taking hostages.

Cinder and Kai, Scarlet and Wolf, Cress and Thorne, and Winter and Jacin all feature in this epic new battle. But it is Iko who must face her deepest fears when she uncovers the truth about her own unusual programming. Questions of love, friendship, and mortality take Iko on an emotional journey that will satisfy and delight fans of this bestselling series.

I really liked Gone Rogue!  This series is a pretty good follow-up to the Cinder series, and I’m glad I read it!

Like Wires And Nerve, this was a pretty fast read because it’s a graphic novel.  I liked seeing what was going on, and the story worked pretty well for the format.  I liked seeing Iko and her friends deal with Lysander, and how they are family and really close.

I really felt for Iko and what she learned about her programming.  You can definitely see how it affected her, but Iko is one of the most caring, enthusiastic characters I’ve ever seen.  I’ve always liked Iko, but this graphic novel series made me love her even more.

I did have an easier time getting into this one than I did the previous book.  I think it’s because we were more into this particular story, and we were past the setting up point.  I loved seeing how they solved things, used technology that was available to them, and worked together.  They all make a really good team, and even though they’ve all gone their separate ways, I also have the feeling they’ll all come together when the chance comes up.

As much as I really liked this book, I just don’t love it.  I want to, because I love Cinder.  But I think the reason why I don’t love this series is that the Lunar Chronicles ended with Winter.  I love seeing how things worked out for everyone a few months later, and I do love seeing the ever after, but I feel like things were resolved pretty well in the original series.

4 stars.  I really liked Gone Rogue, and I liked where things ended for the characters, but I didn’t love Gone Rogue.

Book Review: Wires And Nerve, Volume 1 by Marissa Meyer, Illustrated by Douglas Holgate

Book: Wires And Nerve, Volume 1 by Marissa Meyer, Illustrated by Douglas Holgate

Published January 2019 by Square Fish|240 pages

Where I Got It: I own the paperback

Series: Wires And Nerve #1

Genre: YA Graphic Novel- Sci-Fi/Fantasy

In her first graphic novel, bestselling author Marissa Meyer extends the world of the Lunar Chronicles with a brand-new,action-packed story about Iko, the android with a heart of (mechanized) gold.When rogue packs of wolf-hybrid soldiers threaten the tenuous peace alliance between Earth and Luna, Iko takes it upon herself to hunt down the soldiers’ leader. She is soon working with a handsome royal guard who forces her to question everything she knows about love, loyalty, and her own humanity. With appearances by Cinder, Cress, Scarlet, Winter, and the rest of the Rampion crew, this is a must-have for fans of the bestselling series.

I really liked Wires And Nerve!  I keep wanting to call it Wires And Nerves, for some reason, but that’s definitely not right.

I loved the Cinder series, which is why I picked this book up ages ago.  It’s been on my book shelf for literal years, and since I’m in this mood to read all of the books on my bookshelf that I haven’t read, I knew it was time to read it.  I didn’t like it nearly as much, but I still really liked it.

Iko, of coure, is awesome, and the format was perfect for her story.  I’m glad we get a book about Iko!  I loved seeing what she was up to, and she really is perfect for the job she had to do in this book.  I keep forgetting that Iko is an android, because she has so much heart and personality.  One of Cinder’s guards has no problem reminding her that she’s not human, and I feel like it definitely got to her.  I wish we saw a little more of that, but maybe in the next one.  I’m pretty sure we would have gotten that had this book been a novel, but I’m also having a hard time picturing this book as a novel.

I did read this book in one sitting, which wasn’t a surprise because it’s a graphic novel.  It did work well for this particular story, and I can’t really put my finger on it.  It just worked.  Even though we see what’s going on with all of the other characters, part of me wished we spent more time with them.  I know we’ll get glimpses of them in the next one, and I can always go back and re-read the original series.  It just wasn’t the same, now that they’re all off doing their own things because all is relatively right with the world (and moon).

As much as I liked it, I also had a hard time getting into it.  I don’t know if it’s because we’re seeing the ever after, and all of the work that goes into, or if I’m just not in the mood for it, but I had a hard time loving it the way I loved the Lunar Chronicles.

It’s still great, and I definitely recommend it, especially if you love the Lunar Chronicles and haven’t read the graphic novel yet.

4 stars.  I really liked Wires And Nerve, but I didn’t love it as much as I wanted or hoped to.

Book Review: Blood Heir by Amelie Wen Zhao

Book: Blood Heir by Amelie Wen Zhao

Published November 2019 by Delacorte Press|455 pages

Where I Got It: I own the hardcover

Series: Blood Heir Trilogy #1

Genre: YA Fantasy

This hot debut is the first book in an epic new series about a princess hiding a dark secret and the con man she must trust to clear her name for her father’s murder.

In the Cyrilian Empire, Affinites are reviled. Their varied gifts to control the world around them are unnatural—dangerous. And Anastacya Mikhailov, the crown princess, has a terrifying secret. Her deadly Affinity to blood is her curse and the reason she has lived her life hidden behind palace walls.

When Ana’s father, the emperor, is murdered, her world is shattered. Framed as his killer, Ana must flee the palace to save her life. And to clear her name, she must find her father’s murderer on her own. But the Cyrilia beyond the palace walls is far different from the one she thought she knew. Corruption rules the land, and a greater conspiracy is at work—one that threatens the very balance of her world. And there is only one person corrupt enough to help Ana get to its core: Ramson Quicktongue.

A cunning crime lord of the Cyrilian underworld, Ramson has sinister plans—though he might have met his match in Ana. Because in this story, the princess might be the most dangerous player of all.

I really liked Blood Heir!  I wasn’t sure what to expect, especially with some of the controversy surrounding the book.  I was still interested enough to read the book.

It seemed very Russian-esque to me, and for some reason, I kept thinking about the Anastasia Romanov, and how people thought she was alive.  I think some of the language used is why I kept thinking about Russia.  I could picture a really cold landscape that seemed bleak but also sort of interesting and beautiful.

I can’t wait to see what happens next, because Ana’s work is definitely far from over.  She does have a kingdom to win back, and it certainly won’t be easy for an Affinite, especially one with her ability.  But if anyone can do, it’s her.  I don’t know how she’s going to get the support she needs, but I feel like she can rally the troops in time for the epic battle I’m pretty sure will happen in the last book.

I really liked Ana, and I really felt for her.  Something about how her dad treated her ability reminded me of how Elsa’s parents acted in regards to her abilities.  I’m hoping things aren’t what they seem, but I do wish we saw flashes of what her mom thought.  The way people were told she was sick in order to hide it, how her brother was really supportive…I am also getting some Elsa vibes in addition to the Anastasia vibes.  I don’t know if it will be just this book, or if we’ll see more similarities come out over the rest of the series, but I did really like it.

And how the Affinites were treated were horrible.  I can see why early readers saw slavery but I think human trafficking came through much more strongly, at least for me.  I’m curious to see how it comes up over the rest of the series, and I really felt for all of the characters we saw who were taken, only to be put up for auction.  It made me sad for all of the real-life people who have no way out.

What happened to May was really sad, but I think it’s more because of how Ana reacted to it.  I just felt like we didn’t spend with May, but it definitely felt like it affected Ana, and I hope she finds May’s mom.

4 stars.  I really liked it but I I didn’t love it.  I still can’t wait to see what happens next!

Book Review: Tears Of Frost by Bree Barton

Book: Tears Of Frost by Bree Barton

Published November 2019 Katherine Tegen Books|480 pages

Where I Got It: I borrowed the hardcover from the library

Series: Heart Of Thorns #2

Genre: YA Fantasy

The electric second book in the Heart of Thorns trilogy explores the effects of power in a dark magical kingdom—and the fierce courage it takes to claim your body as your own.

Mia Rose is back from the dead. Her memories are hazy, her body numb—but she won’t stop searching. Her only hope to save the boy she loves and the sister who destroyed her is to find the mother she can never forgive. Pilar is on a hunt of her own. Betrayed by her mother, and plagued by a painful secret, she’s determined to seek out the only person who can exact revenge. All goes according to plan… until she collides with Prince Quin, the boy whose sister she killed.

As Mia, Pilar, and Quin forge dangerous new alliances, they are bewitched by the snow kingdom’s promise of freedom and opportunity. But with the winter solstice drawing near, they must confront the truth beneath the glimmering ice, as lines between friend, foe, and lover vanish like snowflakes on a flame.

I liked Tears Of Frost, but I didn’t like it as much as the first book in the series.  I don’t know if there are more books- I feel like there’s probably one more- but I would keep reading just to see what happens.

I finished this book pretty recently but I’ve already forgotten a lot of what happened.  It was interesting to see Mia come back to life and try to find her mom.  I really felt like her mom was built up to be this amazing person and she turned out to be someone who wasn’t as great as she was made out to be.  It was like she was on a pedestal because she was gone.

I don’t know that I particularly cared for Pilar and Quin.  Pilar had a lot to deal with and there was a part when they’re in the snow kingdom that reminded me of the scene in the first Fantastic Beasts when Newt and Tina go to MACUSA and are about to have their memories removed.  That scene really stood out to me, and I’d love to see that particular scene on screen.

I am glad we got to see more of this world.  There’s a lot more that we see and it was nice to travel a little bit.  Having a world get bigger in a series is always cool, but I know there’s a chance we’ll be staying in places we’ve already seen.  I’m fine with that, because there’s a lot that needs to happen before these characters can move on with their lives.  I just hope that Angelyne is no longer queen because there’s been a lot of destruction because of her.  Actually, I can’t remember if she’s still queen at the end of this book, but if she is, I hope she’s not queen by the end of the next book.  So many details are not sticking with me, and I can’t remember what’s what.  I think that means I should wrap this up.

3 stars.  I liked it, but it’s a hard book to remember, even writing this a couple of days after finishing it.