Book Review: Three Dark Crowns (Three Dark Crowns #1) by Kendare Blake

28374007Title: Three Dark Crowns

Author: Kendare Blake

Series: Three Dark Crowns#1

Genre: Fantasy, Young Adult, Fiction

Number of Pages (Hardcover): 398

Date Published: September 20th of 2016

Publisher: HarperTeen

Synopsis (via Goodreads):

When kingdom come, there will be one.

In every generation on the island of Fennbirn, a set of triplets is born—three queens, all equal heirs to the crown and each possessor of a coveted magic. Mirabella is a fierce elemental, able to spark hungry flames or vicious storms at the snap of her fingers. Katharine is a poisoner, one who can ingest the deadliest poisons without so much as a stomachache. Arsinoe, a naturalist, is said to have the ability to bloom the reddest rose and control the fiercest of lions.

But becoming the Queen Crowned isn’t solely a matter of royal birth. Each sister has to fight for it. And it’s not just a game of win or lose…it’s life or death. The night the sisters turn sixteen, the battle begins.

The last queen standing gets the crown.

Rating: ★★★★★ (5 of 5)

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Three Black Witches are born in a glen,
Sweet little triplets
Will never be friends.
Three Black Witches, all fair to be seen.
Two to devour,
And one to be queen.

I have heard a lot about Three Dark Crowns from almost everyone I follow on Goodreads and on Booktube–most of which are good things. So, with all that hype I was a little daunted to read this. The typical questions such as: What if I don’t like it? What if I hate the characters? What if I end up not liking Kendare Blake’s future books anymore? started to go after me. But, alas, Kendare didn’t fail me again. Her writing is still beautiful, better actually in my opinion! Plus, that cover spoke to me on a level I cannot even begin to explain to you.

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Redeeming Love by Francine Rivers // Thoughts

11422Title: Redeeming Love

Author: Francine Rivers

Series: None

Genre: Christian, Romance, Historical Fiction

Number of Pages (Paperback): 464

Date Published: May 9th of 2005 (but first published in 1991)

Publisher: Multnomah

Synopsis (via Goodreads):

California’s gold country, 1850. A time when men sold their souls for a bag of gold and women sold their bodies for a place to sleep.

Angel expects nothing from men but betrayal. Sold into prostitution as a child she survives by keeping her hatred alive. And what she hates most are the men who use her, leaving her empty and dead inside.

Then she meets Michael Hosea. A man who seeks his Father’s heart in everything, Michael obeys God’s call to marry Angel and to love her unconditionally. Slowly, day by day, he defies Angel’s every bitter expectation, until despite her resistance, her frozen heart begins to thaw.

But with her unexpected softening come overwhelming feelings of unworthiness and fear. And so Angel runs. Back to the darkness, away from her husband’s pursuing love, terrified of the truth she no longer can deny: Her final healing must come from the One who loves her even more than Michael does … the One who will never let her go.

Rate: 5 of 5

Get a copy: Book Depository (Paperback, Hardcover, CD-Audio)

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The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman

7718597Title: The Graveyard Book

Author: Neil Gaiman

Illustrator: Dave McKean

Genre: Children’s, Fantasy, Fiction

Series: none

Awards: Newbery Medal, Hugo Award for Best Novel, etc.

Date Published: September 28th of 2010 (first published on the 30th of September, year 2008)

Publisher: HarperCollins

Synopsis (via Goodreads):

IT TAKES A GRAVEYARD TO RAISE A CHILD.

Nobody Owens, known to his friends as Bod, is a normal boy. He would be completely normal if he didn’t live in a sprawling graveyard, being raised and educated by ghosts, with a solitary guardian who belongs to neither the world of the living nor of the dead. There are dangers and adventures in the graveyard for a boy – an ancient indigo man, a gateway to abandoned city of ghouls, the strange and terrible fleer. But if Bod leaves the graveyard, then he will be in danger from the man Jack – who has already killed Bod’s family . . .

Rate: 5 of 5

Get a copy: Book Depository (Hardcover, Paperback, CD-Audio) National Bookstore (Paperback), Kobo (eBook), Audible (Audio book)


As you may well know (I’m totally assuming on this but whatever), I reserve my five-of-five ratings for those types of books that really blew my mind. It may not be a certain simple work of literature or a complex one or a swoon-worthy one, but rest-assured I’ll be giving five-of-five for those books that I’ve thoroughly enjoyed. These are the types of books that I had the delight of reading with all my heart and that maybe something that people should take a chance on. I mean, if we have the same tastes. Suffice to say, I rated this book a whooping five-of-five so you may have a hint now of how nice of a book this is.

This is the first Gaiman book that I actually completed. I tried to read Coraline and Neverwhere before but I didn’t finish them. The first work of Gaiman that I have picked up was Neverwhere, I think I got as far as a third of the book. That was the era when I was just not into fantasy, I wasn’t really into very complex characters and plot lines that time I guess–I was perhaps fifteen, sixteen (?) and was loving chick lit back then haha. I borrowed it from my cousin and she said that it is very good. So now, I’m a little guilty for not reading it to the end. Haha. The second Gaiman book I tried reading just in the latter parts of 2016 was Coraline. It was actually in my Goodreads TBR list but I ended up removing it because uhm I really don’t know. I’m not really sure why because I’m particulary fond of Children’s books but ugh IRDK. I had mini reading slumps sprinkled all throughout 2016 so maybe the book just took the runt of that slump.

I think the reason why I really liked this book was that there is a different allure to the notion of this book: a child–very much alive–growing up with ghosts and the like. There’s a certain appeal and contrast to the notion that is the living trying to breach the divide that is death. (Does that make sense? haha) There’s a nice contrast to it because a child living with people that are dead. (I just made the ghosts sound like zombies lol) It’s extraordinary how this is often flagged as a children’s book but opens with a rather bloody murder scene and then later on morphs into the setting of the graveyard. I loved the air of mystery.

Okay, characters. Let’s start with Nobody Owens. I’m gonna put it out there: WHO NAMES THEIR KID NOBODY?! Like nobody does that. (Wink, wink. I know excellent pun right. Right?! Say yes.) It is a witty name and really kick-ass name but wow parents please don’t name your child that please. LOL, kidding. I loved his character because he is just so innocent and cute, which is really not something that you would expect from a boy that was raised up from a grim place such as the graveyard. Again, the contrast of his character to the setting is quite extraordinary. Second, Silas. What is up with him? Mr. and Mrs. Owens, there wasn’t really much time for me to love their characters because they weren’t really thereMs. Lupescu, on the other hand, is a character that I actually liked. She’s so stern and strict–I love it. And also, is it just me or do you guys ship Ms. Lupescu and Silas?! No? Just me? Okay. Lastly, Scarlett Perkins, her character kinda irked me a bit. There were qualities in her that I didn’t particulary liked but maybe the thing I wasn’t really keen into is that she’s too trusting. There were many characters mentioned in the book that I won’t be including, e.g. The Sleer, Indigo Man, Jack, Mrs. Perkins, Liza Hempstock, etc. because I won’t be able to bring justice to the rest of the characters. But what I’m going to say is that the author did an excellent job on outlining the characteristics of each person in the story, simple and straight-forward but endearing all the more. 

I’m trying to rationalize the elements of the book such as the ghosts, ghouls, etc. and I’m telling you I’m having a hard time. I can’t flag it as Bod’s hallucinations or it’s just Bod is really crazy or something on that line. There’s just so many elements to be rationalized. For example, how the hell can a child climb a crib or let alone stroll around outside in the cold air and even managed to climb a hill all on his own?! I mean…how the hell can people not see him?! I mean it’s night…but still. Haha. BUT, I’ve come to the conclusion that that is just the nature of this book. It’s just the universe in which the characters walk in, and that I should really just leave it at that. 😛 I’m having a hard time to process it because the story of this one is really in touch with the real world (not like all the High Fantasy I’m currently reading–okay, okay all the Maas books I’m reading haha). So that’s the reason why I’m feeling the need to rationalize this one but ehhhh I should just let it go.

The part of the book that is my favorite are the last two pages. I really bawled my eyes out right there. I even read it over and over, perhaps eight times. This was the part that got me into heaving sobs. I’m in that part in my life where I’m trying to be more independent and to start my own life away from my comfort zone and it just struck a nerve. I found a little part of me in Bod in the latter part. Reading this book just felt like perfect timing. As I have said before, some books just come to your life in the right time as long as you want to take a chance on it. (I totally made reading books some kind of a love life problem hahahaha.)

thought this book has a movie out already but apparently not. After a quick Google search, I found out that it was picked up by Disney but then let go after four months and then was forwarded to another person to make and currently is still in the works. So, I’m looking forward to that!

This book was just so simple and classy yet has a certain dimension to it that comes alive through Gaiman’s writing. There’s just a classic tone to it that you can’t help but be lulled in the story. And not to mention, McKean’s beautiful, beautiful illustrations. It’s such an easy read yet something that is also so inspiring. I’m going to go ahead and say that this is amongst my favorite books to date.


Do I recommend it? Hell yaz.


*Cover image and Synopsis via Goodreads

The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini

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Date Published: April 27, 2004
Publisher: Riverhead Books
About: It is the story of two people–Amir and Hassan. Amir is the child of a wealthy man in Kabul while Hassan is the boy’s servant. It starts off in the two children’s childhood and the unusual friendship of master to servant that has bonded the two. It is a tale of love, friendship, family, politics, war, and forgiveness.
Rate: 5 of 5
I don’t know why I’m reviewing this book when it has been already established a thousand times over that it’s a very good one.
To those who’ve read the book: See what I did there?
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No, not a good one. A very good one. God, I don’t even know how to phrase my opinion on the book. IT’S SO GOOD IT HURTS. Haha.
It’s kinda hard to review the book without giving away some spoilers (which is the case for every book I read actually haha).
It’s the type of story that will keep you on your toes. Never in my two weeks of reading it did I ever lose interest in this disturbingly life-like story. You may wonder why I took so long reading it. It’s because I parted it everyday because I didn’t want it to end. Though I have often said that I love reading children’s books, these are the kinds of books that gives me a fresh outlook on reading. I live for these kinds of books–those who gives you so much chance of learning things.
I wasn’t such a fan of the cover. It looked chaotic. But damn, the story, is an organized chaos. And I loved every page of it. I also liked the fact that I had to research some stuff so I’ll be familiar to the flow of the story. In a way, I’ve learned some new cultures, political perspectives, the harshest realities that happens, etc. It’s such a real book, you know? It doesn’t feel like you’re reading a book. It’s like reading an intricate life journal.
I rarely rate books 5 of 5. But, by jolly, if I can give this book a 10 of 5 I would.

*HEADS UP: SPOILERS*
So, who is ‘the kite runner’?
I can’t believe how at the end of the day Amir is “the kite runner”. I always thought that it is Hassan or Sohrab. I thought that Amir was just a glorified story-teller. I was like this when I read the last sentence of the book: p7xqlayxs6uda

Do I recommend it?
Oh my god. A big whooping YES.
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I hope you guys have a chance to read it! Because it is so amazing.

Oh my God. It’s July.
Gifs via,  via, via –Giphy.