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We’ll Fly Away by Bryan Bliss

We’ll Fly Away by Bryan BlissWe'll Fly Away by Bryan Bliss
Genre: Contemporary
Release Date: 8th May 2018
Publisher: Greenwillow
Source: Publisher
Add it: Goodreads
Rating: four-stars

Uniquely told through letters from death row and third-person narrative, Bryan Bliss’s hard-hitting third novel expertly unravels the string of events that landed a teenager in jail. Luke feels like he’s been looking after Toby his entire life. He patches Toby up when Toby’s father, a drunk and a petty criminal, beats on him, he gives him a place to stay, and he diffuses the situation at school when wise-cracking Toby inevitably gets into fights. Someday, Luke and Toby will leave this small town, riding the tails of Luke’s wrestling scholarship, and never look back.

But during their senior year, they begin to drift apart. Luke is dealing with his unreliable mother and her new boyfriend. And Toby unwittingly begins to get drawn into his father’s world, and falls for an older woman. All their long-held dreams seem to be unraveling. Tense and emotional, this heartbreaking novel explores family, abuse, sex, love, friendship, and the lengths a person will go to protect the people they love. For fans of NPR’s Serial podcast, Jason Reynolds, and Matt de la Peña.

We’ll Fly Away was absolutely devastating, but in the best way. I almost didn’t want to finish it because I knew from the beginning that the ending was going to be brutal, but at the same time I couldn’t put it down. It’s a wonderfully written book about friendship and family, and I would highly recommend it.

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The Ship Beyond Time by Heidi Heilig

The Ship Beyond Time by Heidi HeiligThe Ship Beyond Time by Heidi Heilig
Series: The Girl From Everywhere #2
Genre: Fantasy
Release Date: 28th February 2017
Publisher: Greenwillow
Source: Publisher
Add it: Goodreads
Rating: four-stars

Nix has spent her whole life journeying to places both real and imagined aboard her time-traveling father’s ship. And now it’s finally time for her to take the helm. Her father has given up his obsession to save her mother—and possibly erase Nix’s existence—and Nix’s future lies bright before her. Until she learns that she is destined to lose the one she loves. But her relationship with Kash—best friend, thief, charmer extraordinaire—is only just beginning. How can she bear to lose him? How can she bear to become as adrift and alone as her father?

Desperate to change her fate, Nix takes her crew to a mythical utopia to meet another Navigator who promises to teach her how to manipulate time. But everything in this utopia is constantly changing, and nothing is what it seems—not even her relationship with Kash. Nix must grapple with whether anyone can escape her destiny, her history, her choices. Heidi Heilig weaves fantasy, history, and romance together to tackle questions of free will, fate, and what it means to love another person. But at the center of this adventure are the extraordinary, multifaceted, and multicultural characters that leap off the page, and an intricate, recognizable world that has no bounds. The sequel—and conclusion—to the indie darling The Girl from Everywhere will be devoured by fans of Rachel Hartman and Maggie Stiefvater. Includes black-and-white maps.

The Girl From Everywhere was one of my favourite books of 2016, so as soon as I saw this beauty available to review, I nabbed it. I waited a little while to read it because I have been in the worst reading slump of all time, and I wanted to make sure I was a) in the mood to read fantasy, and b) prepared to give it my utmost attention. I’m kind of glad I waited so long, because the way this one ended leaves so much room for a sequel that I’m pretty sure is coming. Or, at least, some sort of follow up story. Because that ending was not okay.

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This Savage Song by Victoria Schwab

This Savage Song by Victoria SchwabThis Savage Song by Victoria Schwab
Series: Monsters of Verity #1
Genre: Paranormal
Release Date: 5th July 2016
Publisher: Greenwillow
Source: Publisher
Add it: Goodreads
Rating: two-stars

There’s no such thing as safe in a city at war, a city overrun with monsters. In this dark urban fantasy from author Victoria Schwab, a young woman and a young man must choose whether to become heroes or villains—and friends or enemies—with the future of their home at stake. The first of two books.

Kate Harker and August Flynn are the heirs to a divided city—a city where the violence has begun to breed actual monsters. All Kate wants is to be as ruthless as her father, who lets the monsters roam free and makes the humans pay for his protection. All August wants is to be human, as good-hearted as his own father, to play a bigger role in protecting the innocent—but he’s one of the monsters. One who can steal a soul with a simple strain of music. When the chance arises to keep an eye on Kate, who’s just been kicked out of her sixth boarding school and returned home, August jumps at it. But Kate discovers August’s secret, and after a failed assassination attempt the pair must flee for their lives.

Apparently I just don’t get one well with Victoria Schwab’s YA books. I don’t know what it is, but I felt fairly neutral about The Archived books, and unfortunately I felt the same way about This Savage Song. Schwab’s adult books? Wonderful. I adore Vicious, and ADSOM was excellent. Can’t wait to finish the trilogy. But her YA just doesn’t click with me.

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The Unquiet by Mikaela Everett

The Unquiet by Mikaela EverettThe Unquiet by Mikaela Everett
Genre: Science Fiction
Release Date: 22nd September 2015
Publisher: Greenwillow
Source: Publisher
Add it: Goodreads
Rating: two-stars

For most of her life, Lirael has been training to kill—and replace—a duplicate version of herself on a parallel Earth. She is the perfect sleeper-soldier. But she’s beginning to suspect she is not a good person.

The two Earths are identical in almost every way. Two copies of every city, every building, even every person. But the people from the second Earth know something their duplicates do not—two versions of the same thing cannot exist. They—and their whole planet—are slowly disappearing. Lira has been trained mercilessly since childhood to learn everything she can about her duplicate, to be a ruthless sleeper-assassin who kills that other Lirael and steps seamlessly into her life.

This was a weird book, man. Has anyone played Final Fantasy XIII? Remember that thing with the two planets? Yeah, The Unquiet is like that.

weird

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The Girl From Everywhere by Heidi Heilig

The Girl From Everywhere by Heidi HeiligThe Girl From Everywhere by Heidi Heilig
Series: The Girl From Everywhere #1
Genre: Fantasy
Release Date: 16th February 2016
Publisher: Greenwillow
Source: Publisher
Add it: Goodreads
Rating: four-stars

Nix’s life began in Honolulu in 1868. Since then she has traveled to mythic Scandinavia, a land from the tales of One Thousand and One Nights, modern-day New York City, and many more places both real and imagined. As long as he has a map, Nix’s father can sail his ship, The Temptation, to any place, any time. But now he’s uncovered the one map he’s always sought—1868 Honolulu, before Nix’s mother died in childbirth. Nix’s life—her entire existence—is at stake. No one knows what will happen if her father changes the past. It could erase Nix’s future, her dreams, her adventures . . . her connection with the charming Persian thief, Kash, who’s been part of their crew for two years. If Nix helps her father reunite with the love of his life, it will cost her her own.

In The Girl from Everywhere, Heidi Heilig blends fantasy, history, and a modern sensibility with witty, fast-paced dialogue, breathless adventure, and enchanting romance.

I don’t even know where to start with this review because I have so many things to talk about, and yet my brain and fingers are not co-operating and my thoughts have turned into a mush of incoherent gibberish. That’s what great books do to you, and that’s what The Girl From Everywhere has done to me. It’s the morning after and I still haven’t properly recovered.

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