Book Review: Company Daughter

Book Title: Company Daughter

Author: Callan Primer

Genre: YA Fantasy

Series: The Children of Astraea

Ratings: DNF

A girl. A saucepan. A plan to conquer the universe.

Aleta Dinesen doesn’t see the point of hanging around home, not when she can cook a mean paella. But her plan to conquer the universe one meal at a time runs afoul of her overprotective father, commander of a tough mercenary company. And when he puts his foot down, he’s got the firepower to back it up.

Undeterred, Aleta escapes the dreadnaught she calls home one step ahead of the gorgeous, highly disapproving Lieutenant Park, the unlucky young officer tasked with hauling her back. But the universe isn’t the safe place she thought it was. Stranded in a dangerous mining community, she clings to survival by her fingernails. Only by working with someone she can’t stand will she have a chance to escape, proving to everyone that a teenage cook can be the most dangerous force in the universe.

– Goodreads

Special thanks to Sarah Canning for providing me a copy of Company Daughter

I tried picking it up several times but it just didn’t work. I was confused about everything right from the start and couldn’t bring myself to read any further.

∞ ϟ 9¾ ♔ ⚯͛ △⃒⃘ ➵ ♆

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#BookBlogWriMo Day 18: Favourite Subgenres

Favourite Subgenres:

 

Science Fiction:

1. Dystopia

 

2. Post-Apocalyptic

 

Fantasy:

1. High Epic Fantasy

 

2. Urban Fantasy

 

∞ ϟ 9¾ ♔ ⚯͛ △⃒⃘ ➵ ♆

 

Book discussion: Ruin and Rising

Book Title: Ruin and Rising

Author: Leigh Bardugo

Genre: Tsarpunk, YA fantasy

★★★★★

The capital has fallen.

The Darkling rules Ravka from his shadow throne.

Now the nation’s fate rests with a broken Sun Summoner, a disgraced tracker, and the shattered remnants of a once-great magical army.

Deep in an ancient network of tunnels and caverns, a weakened Alina must submit to the dubious protection of the Apparat and the zealots who worship her as a Saint. Yet her plans lie elsewhere, with the hunt for the elusive firebird and the hope that an outlaw prince still survives.

Alina will have to forge new alliances and put aside old rivalries as she and Mal race to find the last of Morozova’s amplifiers. But as she begins to unravel the Darkling’s secrets, she reveals a past that will forever alter her understanding of the bond they share and the power she wields. The firebird is the one thing that stands between Ravka and destruction—and claiming it could cost Alina the very future she’s fighting for.- Goodreads

 

Hands down this is the best book in the Grisha trilogy.

 

The Characters

Alina

Her character development is amazing. I’m glad that she’s grown so much (as you know, I don’t really like her in Siege and storm)

Mal

I’m still not really fond of him, but it’s good that he has become less emotional and more bearable.

Nikolai

ASDFGHJKL He is THE best. He’s witty and a good leader and I’m so thankful that he doesn’t turn evil (phew). The part when he turned into a Volcra though… I really hope he’ll live a happy life 😦

 
Reference to Russian History
I do see some Russian history reference

  1. Nikolai has a similar name with Tsar Nicholas II (1894-1917). Hopefully I won’t write ‘Nikolai’ in the exam (lol)
  2. The Apparat reminds me of the Orthodox Church in the Romanov Dynasty

 
The Story
I thought Alina would not kill Mal. And it’s kind of weird, how he resurrected. The ending… I feel empty – after embarking on an extraordinary journey, they live an ordinary life again. However, I cannot think of a better one: I want the Darkling to remain evil (and dead), I don’t want Alina to be the queen, and I want Alina to be happy.

Overall I really enjoyed the story and it’s a great sequel (as you all know, sequels can sometimes be disappointing.) I absolutely love the science reference (e.g. refraction, bending light etc.) It’s not pure fantasy, it has science in it (whoop)

A side note: I accidentally flipped to the part where Mal’s discovered as the last amplifier and I was like ‘NO NO SPOILER ARRGH I’m ruined’

 

Good and Evil

Both Alina and the Darkling are very powerful – they are very similar. But what make Alina ‘good’ and the Darkling ‘evil’ are their decisions and how they rule.

Power is of two kinds. One is obtained by the fear of punishment and the other by acts of love. Power based on love is a thousand times more effective and permanent then the one derived from fear of punishment.

Well, in Alina’s case, it’s faith. Loads of people have faith in her, and because she cares about her followers, people are willing to bow down to her and call her a ‘Saint’. The Darkling uses fear to rule, and his follower only bow down to him because they fear him.

There is no greater power than faith, and there will be non greater army than one driven by it.

To be honest, both Alina and the Darkling are power-hungry. I love how they are very similar, yet so different. Also, characters like Genya and Zoya displayed their bright and dark side throughout the story. Leigh Bardugo makes this message clear – We’ve all got both light and dark inside us. What matters is the part we choose to act on. That’s who we really are. (what’s up Harry Potter reference)

 

∞ ϟ 9¾ ♔ ⚯͛ △⃒⃘ ➵ ♆

The Grisha Trilogy as a whole

The covers are AMAZING! I can’t choose between these two:

 

Even though it’s not an action-packed fantasy, it brings out important messages. The world building is amazing, and the characters are well developed. There’s no fine line between good and evil – everyone can be both at the same time. I’ll definitely recommend it to those who are new to the fantasy genre and it is one of the best trilogies I’ve read this year 🙂

∞ ϟ 9¾ ♔ ⚯͛ △⃒⃘ ➵ ♆

So what do you think of Ruin and Rising? Are you satisfied with the ending?

2014 February Wrap up

Another monthly wrap up!!!

So for February I read a total 9 books – 3 Chinese books and 6 English books:

1. The Lost Hero

2. The Selection

3. The Elite

4. The Darkest Minds

5. Aristotle and Dante discover the secrets of the universe

6. Shadow and Bone

 

The Lost Hero is the first book in The Heroes of Olympus series, which is preceded by the Percy Jackson & the Olympians series. I’ve read the Percy Jackson & the Olympians series for multiple times and really love the Greek mythology elements in the book. However, The Lost Hero didn’t pull me into its world, unlike The Lightening Thief. Basically, The Lost Hero is based on both Greek and Roman mythology, and has three main characters – Jason, Piper and Leo. I personally prefer Percy Jackson being the main character, so I don’t really like this series. But of course, it’s a new one, so it’s completely normal that the main character(s) will change. Also, the amount of characters being introduced made me kind of hard to keep track with the story, and so I didn’t continue with the series.

 

The Selection and The Elite are the first two books in The Selection trilogy by Kiera Cass. They are about a dystopian world where a ‘Selection’ will take place for the Prince to choose his future wife. At first I’m kind of reluctant to give these books a try as it sounds like princesses stories and fairytales (?), but once I read them, they’re all good. The Selection is a wonderful book, and I really enjoy how the protagonist, America Singer, goes through the Selection. She is the only girl who doesn’t want the crown, which give the story a little twist(?) as it’s not about a girl violently craving for the prince’s attention. It also has some rebellion happening in the book, and that’s obviously a plus. As for The Elite, I feel like more explanation is needed for the rebellion. The book didn’t really talk much about what’s going on with the rebels. It kind of focuses on America Singer and the other Elites, and there’s more and more drama. I’m a person who absolutely hate drama, so I didn’t enjoy this book as much. But overall, it’s still a great book 😀

The Darkest Mind is another dystopian book (yes, another one) about children with special abilities and brutal government. Actually, they are FRIGHTENING abilities. They cannot control it, and are sent to Thurmond, a kind of ‘rehabilitation camp’. Ruby, the protagonist, managed to break out and escape. On the road she joined a group of ‘weird’ kids, just like her, that have escaped from their own camp. I honestly don’t remember much from this book, but overall it’s an enjoyable read.

Aristotle and Dante discover the secrets of the universe is a free ebook from the website http://www.pulseit.com/. They feature different free books every once in a while 😀 This book is different from what I usually read. It’s kind of philosophical and psychological. It’s basically a story about a boy named Aristotle, how he is an outcast, how he meets Dante, and how they learn more about themselves through their friendship. I really remember how I was so shocked at the end – I didn’t expect it to end that early, but it is beautiful. This book is inspiring. I feel like I’ve missed something during the first read, and so, I will definitely reread it.

‘We all fight our own private wars’—

 

So the last book, Shadow and Bone, is a fantasy. It has some Russia elements in it, and is a story about a girl named Alina who has power that she doesn’t realize. The plot is well done, and I really enjoy it. At first, it’s kind of hard to keep up with all those names and places , but once I’m familiar with them, it’s all good. I remember how this book made my adrenaline rush. It’s amazing! After this book I feel like other than dystopia, fantasy is also a great genre 😀

 

I’m really sorry for this crappy monthly reads review thingy because my memories have faded. D: Anyway, I’ll see you guys in my next post! Bye!