Chain of Gold

Chain of Gold

Author:  Cassandra Clare
Publisher: Margaret K McElderry Books
Pages: 672
On Sale: March 3 2020
Genre: Fantasy, YA, Romance, Paranormal
Stars: 5/5

From the Publisher:

From #1 New York Times and USA TODAY bestselling author Cassandra Clare comes the first novel in a brand-new trilogy where evil hides in plain sight and love cuts deeper than any blade. Chain of Gold is a Shadowhunters novel.

Cordelia Carstairs is a Shadowhunter, a warrior trained since childhood to battle demons. When her father is accused of a terrible crime, she and her brother travel to London in hopes of preventing the family’s ruin. Cordelia’s mother wants to marry her off, but Cordelia is determined to be a hero rather than a bride. Soon Cordelia encounters childhood friends James and Lucie Herondale and is drawn into their world of glittering ballrooms, secret assignations, and supernatural salons, where vampires and warlocks mingle with mermaids and magicians. All the while, she must hide her secret love for James, who is sworn to marry someone else.

But Cordelia’s new life is blown apart when a shocking series of demon attacks devastate London. These monsters are nothing like those Shadowhunters have fought before—these demons walk in daylight, strike down the unwary with incurable poison, and seem impossible to kill. London is immediately quarantined. Trapped in the city, Cordelia and her friends discover that their own connection to a dark legacy has gifted them with incredible powers—and forced a brutal choice that will reveal the true cruel price of being a hero.

From Me:

I devoured this book; it was just as good as all of the others. It’s been so long since I read the Clockwork series that I forgot who some people were, but everything still made sense and came together in the end. Most of the relationships are heartbreaking, yet I’m really looking forward to the rest of this trilogy. And to learn what happened to Matthew.  The Clockwork series was my favorite and I loved this continuation of it, Cassandra Clare really sucks you into her characters and world building in a way that makes you physically miss them when you’re done.

Cinderella Is Dead

Cinderella Is Dead

Author: Kalynn Bayron
Publisher: Bloomsbury YA
Pages: 400
On Sale: July 7 2020
Genre: Fantasy, YA, LGBT, Retellings
Stars: 5/5

From the Publisher:

It’s 200 years after Cinderella found her prince, but the fairy tale is over. Teen girls are now required to appear at the Annual Ball, where the men of the kingdom select wives based on a girl’s display of finery. If a suitable match is not found, the girls not chosen are never heard from again.

Sixteen-year-old Sophia would much rather marry Erin, her childhood best friend, than parade in front of suitors. At the ball, Sophia makes the desperate decision to flee, and finds herself hiding in Cinderella’s mausoleum. There, she meets Constance, the last known descendant of Cinderella and her step sisters. Together they vow to bring down the king once and for all–and in the process, they learn that there’s more to Cinderella’s story than they ever knew . . .

This fresh take on a classic story will make readers question the tales they’ve been told, and root for girls to break down the constructs of the world around them.


From Me:

I thought this book was perfect and I loved every second of it.  I found it to be really original and a bit spooky, and while a bit of it was predictable the characters really stood out and had their own personalities.  It was intense enough that I couldn’t stop reading, but not so fast paced that I was exhausted by the end.  I would love to see a sequel about how their changes are working out.

Ever Cursed

Ever Cursed

Author: Corey Ann Haydu
Publisher: Simon Pulse
Pages: 304
On Sale: July 28 2020
Genre: Fantasy, YA
Stars: 3/5

From the Publisher:

Damsel meets A Heart in a Body in the World in this incisive and lyrical feminist fairy tale about a princess determined to save her sisters from a curse, even if it means allying herself with the very witch who cast it.

The Princesses of Ever are beloved by the kingdom and their father, the King. They are cherished, admired.

Cursed.

Jane, Alice, Nora, Grace, and Eden carry the burden of being punished for a crime they did not commit, or even know about. They are each cursed to be Without one essential thing—the ability to eat, sleep, love, remember, or hope. And their mother, the Queen, is imprisoned, frozen in time in an unbreakable glass box.

But when Eden’s curse sets in on her thirteenth birthday, the princesses are given the opportunity to break the curse, preventing it from becoming a True Spell and dooming the princesses for life. To do this, they must confront the one who cast the spell—Reagan, a young witch who might not be the villain they thought—as well as the wickedness plaguing their own kingdom…and family.

Told through the eyes of Reagan and Jane—the witch and the bewitched—this insightful twist of a fairy tale explores power in a patriarchal kingdom not unlike our own.

From Me:

I really loved how original this story was, and I wish it had been longer.  I felt the characters were a bit flat and I would have liked to get to know each of them on a deeper level to really understand how they felt and what they went through.  The story started out a bit slow with a lot of things being hinted at but never explained, and while it picked up the pace better part way through it never felt like a wild ride to me.  I was expecting intense drama and a race to the finish line and while things did come to a head, it meandered its way there.  The conclusion did tie up most of the ends, but it just didn’t feel completely satisfying.  Overall it was good and clever, I just expected… more.