I can’t believe that one of my most anticipated fantasy books of 2018 is finally here! AND IT’S EVEN BETTER THAN WHAT I HAD HOPED IT WOULD BE. I’m always a little cautious going into fantasy books because 80% of what I read is contemporary, but I couldn’t help but fall in love with Children of Blood and Bone from the very first page.
So I thought I’d do the #NowWeRise Book Tag to celebrate! I saw this tag on Bec’s Books and I couldn’t not participate. If you’ve read Children of Blood and Bone and would like to do the book tag, I’m officially tagging YOU! You’re also welcome to use the graphics I’ve created.
#NowWeRise Book Tag
What’s a trope you’d love to see die, and one you’d love to see live, or flourish more often?
LOVE CURING MENTAL ILLNESS CAN GO DIE IN A PIT, THANK YOU. Honestly, it’s 2018 — we don’t want stories that show how falling in love will cure all your problems. We need novels that have mentally ill characters who have good support systems, or go to therapy, or take medication. There’s nothing that angers me more than one character thinking they can ‘fix’ another’s mental illness by their love. Most of the time, this is just done in a completely unrealistic way, not to mention how harmful it can be for some readers.
A trope I’d love to see more often is the ‘friends to lovers’ trope. Ever since I read The Gentleman’s Guide to Vice and Virtue, I’ve been desperate to get my hands on romances as adorable as this. MONTY… PERCY… THEY’RE JUST SO ADORABLE. There’s something so sweet about two people who go from being friends to being in a relationship, and it never fails to melt my heart. If you have any recommendations for more books with this trope, I’d love to know!
What do you immediately connect with when it comes to a book?
POP CULTURE REFERENCES. I absolutely love reading contemporaries, and what makes me adore them even more is when they have epic pop culture references. Books that mention Doctor Who immediately get another star added to their rating. I’m sorry, I don’t make the rules. I just find that having references I know of not only helps place a novel in a definitive era or year, but also helps me to connect to the characters from the get-go. There’s nothing like fangirling over the same things your characters do, right?! And there’s no better example of that than The Secret Science of Magic.
If you could push a book on someone, what would you immediately recommend?
I’m sure y’all know what I’m going to say already… but RADIO SILENCE. I’ll honestly never stop shouting about that book, and just thinking about it now has me craving a reread. It’s such a phenomenal novel about podcasts, and overachievers, and questioning if going to university is the right path for you, and it’s just SO WHOLESOME. The protagonist, Frances, is biracial and bisexual, and Radio Silence also features a full cast of queer characters that I just want to hug tight and never let go. THIS BOOK IS MY LIFE.
If your house was on fire and you could only save one book, what would it be?
HOW COULD YOU DO THIS TO ME? This is honestly such a difficult decision, but I think I’m going to have to go with This Savage Song by Victoria Schwab. Not only is Victoria my QUEEN, this book holds so much sentimental value to me. I read it during a really tough time in my life, and it reminded me that you have to fight not to let your mental illness win sometimes and that relapsing doesn’t make you a monster. To me, this book wasn’t just a fantasy story about soul-stealing monsters. It’s about fighting the darkness within you and understanding what makes you human. This book just means the world to me.
What’s a book that had you floating on air out of happiness?
My answer for this one will again come as no surprise, and that’s because my chosen book for this prompt is The Gentleman’s Guide to Vice and Virtue. THIS BOOK. WOW. If I’m ever feeling down, I always turn to this delightful novel because it just MAKES ME SMILE UNCONTROLLABLY. Even just thinking about Monty and Percy now… ahhh. THEY’RE ADORABLE. It’s just so queer and so gorgeous, and I don’t think I’ve ever read a book that made me as happy as when I was reading this one. The humour is also on point, which makes it an enjoyable and unforgettable read.
A book that’s made an impact (on you, or the world)?
How could I not say The Hate U Give for this prompt? WHAT A BOOK. I honestly can’t think of a book from our generation that’s had as much of an impact as The Hate U Give has. It’s won countless awards, it’s been on the New York Times Bestseller List ever since it was released, and even Obama is a fan. Angie is a literal angel, and it was so amazing to get the chance to interview her and then meet her at the Melbourne Writers Festival. This book has already made such a massive impact on the world, and I know it will continue to do so. I can’t wait to see the film!
What are your favourite morally grey characters, who do you love that walks between darkness and light?
HOLLAND FOR SURE. If you’re yet to read A Darker Shade of Magic, I refuse to say anything. I just can’t even begin to express how much I love this series, and how so many of the characters Queen V writes are so morally grey. JUST LET ME HOLD THOSE MURDEROUS, PRECIOUS SMOL BEANS. Especially Holland.
Which book had a plot twist you DID NOT SEE COMING and it made you sick with feels?
Let me get a bit nostalgic here and list off some of the books with twists that had 14 year old me SHOOK. Because I’m going to be THAT PERSON. But also, I feel like some of these books had the best twists I’ve read? I don’t know about you, but the ending of Clockwork Princess was like… WHERE DID THAT COME FROM? WHAT? HOW? And then that thing in City of Bones? And Allegiant? These are the books that gave me trust issues, I’m not even kidding.
Name your most anticipated releases for 2018!
HERE’S A SEMI-DEFINITIVE LIST (sorry, not of worst nightmares, just the books I’m looking forward to reading this year):
Your favourite underrated or side character?
Frances’ Mum in Radio Silence. Ugh, if she isn’t mum goals, then I don’t know who would be. They just have such an adorable mother-daughter bond, and I loved seeing how present she was in Radio Silence, unlike so many books that just kill of the parental figures or make them unimportant. I mean, they watch TV together and wear onesies and make jokes, and FRANCES’ MUM IS JUST EVERYTHING. Okay, I think I’ve screamed about this book enough for one sitting. If I haven’t convinced you to read it because of this post alone, I don’t know what else will. Oh yeah, maybe this post.
Zélie Adebola remembers when the soil of Orïsha hummed with magic. Burners ignited flames, Tiders beckoned waves, and Zelie’s Reaper mother summoned forth souls.
But everything changed the night magic disappeared. Under the orders of a ruthless king, maji were targeted and killed, leaving Zélie without a mother and her people without hope.
Now, Zélie has one chance to bring back magic and strike against the monarchy. With the help of a rogue princess, Zélie must outwit and outrun the crown prince, who is hell-bent on eradicating magic for good.
Danger lurks in Orïsha, where snow leoponaires prowl and vengeful spirits wait in the waters. Yet the greatest danger may be Zélie herself as she struggles to control her powers—and her growing feelings for the enemy.
WOW. WHAT AN INCREDIBLE NOVEL. I knew I was going to be in for a treat because so many authors I know and trust had been raving about Children of Blood and Bone in the months leading up to its release, but I didn’t know just how much I’d adore it. I’m not usually a big fantasy person, so I wasn’t expecting to be blown away in the same way so many other people had, but I WAS WRONG. This book was such a rollercoaster ride of emotions, and it kept me glued to the pages from beginning to ending. I’m honestly still so shook.
I’m that annoying person that never reads blurbs and wants to be completely surprised by books, so I didn’t know magic was going to play such a major role in the narrative – AND I LOVED THAT. As I’ve been going on and on about for the past two years, I’m a big fan of A Darker Shade of Magic and any other books that somehow incorporate the use of magic into the story. I JUST FELL HEAD OVER HEELS FOR THIS PHENOMENAL NOVEL. The way the magic was written about made it easy to understand and to follow the story, and I was just pulled in from the very first page.
Another thing I loved about Children of Blood and Bone was all the action. Usually I’m a fan of contemporary novels, and quieter ones at that, but I really found myself enjoying the chase scenes and the battle sequences, and I was just screaming YES at every page. The writing itself was brilliant, and the pacing was perfectly done. AND THE CHARACTERS. I just want to hold them all. There was so much growth in both Zelie and Amari, and I loved getting to know them and see how their friendship grew.
I honestly didn’t expect to love this novel as much as I did, and I’m so pleased I decided to pick it up. Even if you’re not 100% sold on fantasy yet, I urge you to give this one a go because it might just be the book that changes your mind. I know it did for me. NOW I’M CRAVING ALL THE ACTION AND DEATH AND MAGIC. I need the next book in my hands now. BRB CRYING UNTIL BOOK TWO.
Have you had a chance to read Children of Blood and Bone yet? Did you love it as much as I did? Have you read any of the other books I mentioned in the book tag? What would some of your answers be? Are you a fan of magic in books? I’d love to know!
Thanks to Pan Macmillan Australia for providing me with a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review!