Salt to the Sea by Ruta Sepetys

Salt to the Sea by Ruta SepetysSalt to the Sea by Ruta Sepetys
Genre: Historical
Release Date: 2nd February 2016
Source: Bought
Add it: Goodreads
Rating: four-stars

Winter, 1945. Four teenagers. Four secrets.

Each one born of a different homeland; each one hunted, and haunted, by tragedy, lies…and war.

As thousands of desperate refugees flock to the coast in the midst of a Soviet advance, four paths converge, vying for passage aboard the Wilhelm Gustloff, a ship that promises safety and freedom.

Yet not all promises can be kept.

Inspired by the single greatest tragedy in maritime history, bestselling and award-winning author Ruta Sepetys (Between Shades of Gray) lifts the veil on a shockingly little-known casualty of World War II. An illuminating and life-affirming tale of heart and hope.

Salt to the Sea was one of my most anticipated releases of the year, and it certainly didn’t disappoint. Ruta Sepetys has completely delivered three times in a row now, meaning that her spot on my auto-buy authors list is well deserved. Her writing style is captivating and contains the perfect blend of description and emotion, which then toys with my emotions and causes me to become so attached to her stories that I want to hit people in the face with her books. In a loving way, of course.

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Rose Under Fire by Elizabeth Wein

Rose Under Fire by Elizabeth WeinRose Under Fire by Elizabeth Wein
Series: Code Name Verity #2
Genre: Historical
Release Date: September 10, 2013
Publisher: Disney Hyperion
Source: Bought
Add it: Goodreads
Rating: four-stars

While flying an Allied fighter plane from Paris to England, American ATA pilot and amateur poet, Rose Justice, is captured by the Nazis and sent to Ravensbrück, the notorious women's concentration camp. Trapped in horrific circumstances, Rose finds hope in the impossible through the loyalty, bravery and friendship of her fellow prisoners. But will that be enough to endure the fate that's in store for her?

Happy New Year everyone! I’m kicking 2016 off as I mean to go on – by flailing about incredibly upsetting books that I enjoyed. Story of my life. So anyway, I’m a massive fan of Code Name Verity. It wasn’t a perfect read for me, but it came pretty damn close and I am still broken over Julie and Maddie. OTP, guys, OTP. I had to wait a while before I could pick Rose Under Fire up because I was still pretty upset about the whole situation. But once I did, I was captivated, and I read this book in a matter of hours.

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Legacy of Kings by Eleanor Herman

Legacy of Kings by Eleanor HermanLegacy of Kings by Eleanor Herman
Series: Blood of Gods and Royals #1
Genre: Historical
Release Date: August 18, 2015
Publisher: Harlequin Teen
Source: Publisher
Add it: Goodreads
Rating: one-star

Imagine a time when the gods turn a blind eye to the agony of men, when the last of the hellions roam the plains and evil stirs beyond the edges of the map. A time when cities burn, and in their ashes, empires rise.

Alexander, Macedonia’s sixteen-year-old heir, is on the brink of discovering his fated role in conquering the known world but finds himself drawn to a newcomer…

Katerina must navigate the dark secrets of court life while hiding her own mission: kill the Queen. But she doesn’t account for her first love…

Jacob will go to unthinkable lengths to win Katerina, even if it means having to compete for her heart with Hephaestion, a murderer sheltered by the prince.

And far across the sea, Zofia, a Persian princess and Alexander’s unmet betrothed, wants to alter her destiny by seeking the famed and deadly Spirit Eaters.

If you have known me for a while then you’ll have no trouble recalling that I am a total nerd when it comes to Ancient History. It started when I was five years old with Xena, which I used to watch with my grandparents at all hours of the night, and then the fascination progressed when we studied Egypt, Rome, and Greece in school. And then it became a full blown obsession when I watched Spartacus back in 2011, which then eventually led me to study Classical Civilisations as a hobby in my free time and gain a qualification in it. The point of this story? Well, Alexander the Great was one of my modules, and ever since I started reading more about him I decided that he’s one of the most interesting people of Ancient Greece and I needed to know everything. So when Legacy of Kings popped up on my radar, I had to get it. Continue reading

Lion Heart by A. C. Gaughen

Lion Heart by A. C. GaughenLion Heart by A. C. Gaughen
Series: Scarlet #3
Genre: Historical
Release Date: May 19, 2015
Publisher: Bloomsbury Childrens
Source: Bought
Add it: Goodreads
Rating: one-star

Imprisoned by Prince John for months, Scarlet finds herself a long way from Nottinghamshire. After a daring escape from the Prince's clutches, she learns that King Richard’s life is in jeopardy, and Eleanor of Aquitaine demands a service Scarlet can’t refuse: spy for her and help bring Richard home safe. But fate—and her heart—won’t allow her to stay away from Nottinghamshire for long, and together, Scarlet and Rob must stop Prince John from going through with his dark plans for England. They can not rest until he’s stopped, but will their love be enough to save them once and for all?

I really, really dislike – hell, I hate – this series, but I had to finish it. Apparently I hate myself too. I didn’t like Scarlet because of the abusive relationships that were romanticised and brushed over, and I only read Lady Thief because I had it on my shelf. Who even knows why I spent money on Lion Heart, because I knew what I was getting into. Whatever, I’m here to call out the abusive and manipulative bastards, so here we go. Continue reading

House of Thieves by Charles Belfoure

House of Thieves by Charles BelfoureHouse of Thieves by Charles Belfoure
Genre: Historical
Release Date: 15th September 2015
Publisher: Sourcebooks Landmark
Add it: Goodreads
Rating: two-stars

In 1886 New York, a respectable architect shouldn’t have any connection to the notorious gang of thieves and killers that rules the underbelly of the city. But when John Cross’s son racks up an unfathomable gambling debt to Kent’s Gents, Cross must pay it back himself. All he has to do is use his inside knowledge of high society mansions and museums to craft a robbery even the smartest detectives won’t solve. The take better include some cash too —the bigger the payout, the faster this will be over.

With a newfound talent for sniffing out vulnerable and lucrative targets, Cross becomes invaluable to the gang. But Cross’s entire life has become a balancing act, and it will only take one mistake for it all to come crashing down —and for his family to go down too.

This book was bad. Like, really bad. I don’t know much about the author other than he wrote The Paris Architect but honestly, I requested this thinking it’d be a cool heist type novel in the vein of the Gentlemen Bastards series by Scott Lynch (FUCKING READ THEM, THEY’RE AMAZING) but no, instead I got some rich guy robbing all his rich friends with his bored rich family. Do you know what I like about rich people?

ryan Continue reading