Category Archives: ARC review

[Review] Warcross – Marie Lu (8 Criticisms To Warcross as a Game)

Book Title: Warcross (Duology)
Author:     Marie Lu
Number of pages:  368

Synopsis:

For the millions who log in every day, Warcross isn’t just a game—it’s a way of life. The obsession started ten years ago and its fan base now spans the globe, some eager to escape from reality and others hoping to make a profit. Struggling to make ends meet, teenage hacker Emika Chen works as a bounty hunter, tracking down players who bet on the game illegally. But the bounty hunting world is a competitive one, and survival has not been easy. Needing to make some quick cash, Emika takes a risk and hacks into the opening game of the international Warcross Championships—only to accidentally glitch herself into the action and become an overnight sensation.

(re: Goodreads @ Warcross by Marie Lu)


Should this book be picked up? the tl;dr review:

– Vibrant settings with augmented reality and video gaming at the forefront
– Warcross as a game, although flashy, has so many moving parts that do not make sense in the grand scheme of the competition
– The pro-gaming community is diversely represented
– Plot is predictable; romance is rather bland

Initial Thoughts

I am transferring this review from Goodreads to my blog. I have many thoughts to share. Please be advised I write this from my own gaming experience.

Disclaimer: I received an ARC of Warcross from PenguinTeen at an author breakfast 


Continue reading [Review] Warcross – Marie Lu (8 Criticisms To Warcross as a Game)

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[Review & Giveaway] Children of Blood and Bone – Tomi Adeyemi

Book Title: Children of Blood and Bone 
            (Series, Legacy of Orisha #1)
Author:     Tomi Adeyemi 
Number of pages:  525

Synopsis:

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.

(re: Goodreads @ Children of Blood and Bone by Tomi Adeyemi)


Should this book be picked up? the tl;dr review:

– Incredibly well-paced making this read really quick despite its tome-like size; narrative follows three POVs
– Magic system is a bit wonky at times but otherwise the abilities themselves are penned with great imagery during action sequences
– West-African inspired fantasy re: Nigerian/Yoruba influences
– There is a romance and a ship but it does not really take center stage to the conflict
– I’d recommend Google Translate for some passages; inclusive of phrases and incantations that bring to life the mythos and mysticism of this world

Initial Thoughts

The hype is pretty legit!

Disclaimer: I received an ARC of Children of Blood and Bone from Raincoast Books.


Continue reading [Review & Giveaway] Children of Blood and Bone – Tomi Adeyemi

[Review and Q&A] American Panda – Gloria Chao

Book Title: American Panda (Standalone)
Author:     Gloria Chao
Number of pages:  320

Synopsis:

At seventeen, Mei should be in high school, but skipping fourth grade was part of her parents’ master plan. Now a freshman at MIT, she is on track to fulfill the rest of this predetermined future: become a doctor, marry a preapproved Taiwanese Ivy Leaguer, produce a litter of babies.

With everything her parents have sacrificed to make her cushy life a reality, Mei can’t bring herself to tell them the truth–that she (1) hates germs, (2) falls asleep in biology lectures, and (3) has a crush on her classmate Darren Takahashi, who is decidedly not Taiwanese.

(re: Goodreads @ American Panda by Gloria Chao)


Should this book be picked up? the tl;dr review:

– First generation Taiwanese American protagonist beginning university at MIT at age 17 (one year earlier than her age cohort)
– Struggles of culture and family expectations balanced against protagonist’s passion and her struggle with germaphobia being a hindrance to her current success at school
– The setting/world building is lush with Chinese culture re: traditions, idioms, food, art, values, etc.
– Heavy on the instalove romance with a Japanese love interest

Initial Thoughts

Like looking into a mirror.

Disclaimer: I received an ARC of American Panda from Simon and Schuster Canada.


Continue reading [Review and Q&A] American Panda – Gloria Chao