Favorite Fantasy Books: The Second Half Of 2019

Time for the second half of this, you can find the first half here

Alright, let’s get these down, in no particular order.
Clicking on the picture takes you to the GoodReads Link, clicking on the title above it takes you to my review of it!

 

6. War of Mist, Book III The Oremere Chronicles

War of Mist (The Oremere Chronicles, #3)

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War is here.

Toxic mist drives all life to the brink of destruction and the conqueror queen, Ines, has her talons in the kings of the realm.

Bleak, having discovered her true heritage, must now scour the lands for the one thing that might save them all.

But the search is a treacherous one – and it will push her to the very limits of endurance.

Amidst secrets, lies and the intricacies of battle, Bleak and her companions learn just how far they’ll go for the ones they love. But will it be enough?

As deadly forces grapple for power across the continents, families, friends and allies unite to take one final stand.

Explosive revelations, heart-wrenching betrayals and breathtaking magic soar in the epic conclusion to Helen Scheuerer’s bestselling trilogy, The Oremere Chronicles.

5. The Return of King Lillian

The Return of King Lillian

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The Return of King Lillian is a mythic journey tale – a metaphysical fantasy for dreamers and nonconformists of all ages.

So, why the manly moniker in tandem with the womanly name?

“The Firstborn Child of The Emperor-King Inherits the Ruling Crown, the Title of Emperor-King and All Powers Thereof.” (Item 37, The Royal Manual)

Enter Lillian, the firstborn child of said Emperor-King. Cast out of her Kingdom by malevolent forces, mysteriously waylaid by Destiny, the spirited, self-reliant Lillian sets off on an exuberant journey to find her way home and claim her birthright. As she travels through marvelous and mystical lands in search of her origins, Lillian encounters and befriends a kaleidoscopic cast of characters. Most of the tale is told by Lillian herself, as she chronicles her extraordinary adventures.

The audiobook of The Return of King Lillian is performed by the author, Suzie Plakson.

 

 

4. House of Salt and Sorrows

House of Salt and Sorrows

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In a manor by the sea, twelve sisters are cursed.

Annaleigh lives a sheltered life at Highmoor, a manor by the sea, with her sisters, their father, and stepmother. Once they were twelve, but loneliness fills the grand halls now that four of the girls’ lives have been cut short. Each death was more tragic than the last—the plague, a plummeting fall, a drowning, a slippery plunge—and there are whispers throughout the surrounding villages that the family is cursed by the gods.

Disturbed by a series of ghostly visions, Annaleigh becomes increasingly suspicious that the deaths were no accidents. Her sisters have been sneaking out every night to attend glittering balls, dancing until dawn in silk gowns and shimmering slippers, and Annaleigh isn’t sure whether to try to stop them or to join their forbidden trysts. Because who—or what—are they really dancing with?

When Annaleigh’s involvement with a mysterious stranger who has secrets of his own intensifies, it’s a race to unravel the darkness that has fallen over her family—before it claims her next. 

 

 

3. Kingdom of Souls

Kingdom of Souls (Kingdom of Souls, #1)

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Magic has a price—if you’re willing to pay.

Born into a family of powerful witchdoctors, Arrah yearns for magic of her own. But each year she fails to call forth her ancestral powers, while her ambitious mother watches with growing disapproval.

There’s only one thing Arrah hasn’t tried, a deadly last resort: trading years of her own life for scraps of magic. Until the Kingdom’s children begin to disappear, and Arrah is desperate to find the culprit.

She uncovers something worse. The long-imprisoned Demon King is stirring. And if he rises, his hunger for souls will bring the world to its knees… unless Arrah pays the price for the magic to stop him. 

 

 

2. The Winter of the Witch

The Winter of the Witch (Winternight Trilogy, #3)

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Following their adventures in The Bear and the Nightingale and The Girl in the Tower, Vasya and Morozko return in this stunning conclusion to the bestselling Winternight Trilogy, battling enemies mortal and magical to save both Russias, the seen and the unseen.

Now Moscow has been struck by disaster. Its people are searching for answers—and for someone to blame. Vasya finds herself alone, beset on all sides. The Grand Prince is in a rage, choosing allies that will lead him on a path to war and ruin. A wicked demon returns, stronger than ever and determined to spread chaos. Caught at the center of the conflict is Vasya, who finds the fate of two worlds resting on her shoulders. Her destiny uncertain, Vasya will uncover surprising truths about herself and her history as she desperately tries to save Russia, Morozko, and the magical world she treasures. But she may not be able to save them all.

 

1. Girls of Storm and Shadow

Girls of Storm and Shadow (Girls of Paper and Fire, #2)

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In this mesmerizing sequel to the New York Times bestselling Girls of Paper and Fire, Lei and Wren have escaped their oppressive lives in the Hidden Palace, but soon learn that freedom comes with a terrible cost.

Lei, the naive country girl who became a royal courtesan, is now known as the Moonchosen, the commoner who managed to do what no one else could. But slaying the cruel Demon King wasn’t the end of the plan—it’s just the beginning. Now Lei and her warrior love Wren must travel the kingdom to gain support from the far-flung rebel clans. The journey is made even more treacherous thanks to a heavy bounty on Lei’s head, as well as insidious doubts that threaten to tear Lei and Wren apart from within.

Meanwhile, an evil plot to eliminate the rebel uprising is taking shape, fueled by dark magic and vengeance. Will Lei succeed in her quest to overthrow the monarchy and protect her love for Wren, or will she fall victim to the sinister magic that seeks to destroy her?

 

Winter of the Witch – Blog Tour

 

 

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Synopsis:
One girl can make a difference…
Moscow is in flames, leaving its people searching for answers – and someone to blame. Vasilisa, a girl with extraordinary gifts, must flee for her life, pursued by those who blame their misfortune on her magic.
Then a vegeful demon returns, stronger than ever. Determined to engulf the world in chaos, he finds allies among men and spirits. Mankind and magical creatures alike find their fates resting on Vasya’s shoulders.
But she may not be able to save them all.

Book Information:
Written by: Katherine Arden
Published by: Penguing, Random House
Published on: October 3, 2019
Format: Paperback, eBook, Audio

 

My Review

I don’t know if I just have an affinity for heartbreaking trilogies or what but they seem to be my lot in life.

This now includes the Winternight Trilogy.

Arden weaves you into the folklore and history of Russia with a fantasy twist on it that I think raises up the culture of Russia in a rather brilliant way.

This though is the conclusion of the trilogy so I recommend looking away if you have not read the other two yet.

In this book, we’ve started off in the aftermath of the fire that temporarily plagued Moscow, started and quelled by Vasya. She is caught in a terrifying situation afterwards but it leaves her with no choice but than to travel through Midnight to change the outcomes of Moscow and what its future would mean for those she cares for back in Rus’.

There’s more of the Winter King himself but I am happy to say that as Arden has masterfully done in the other two books, he is not the focus. This is about our ‘witch,’ Vasya and it is about the choices and paths she takes.

Arden has this ability that the moment you read page one you are utterly transported to Vasya’s world. You forget that you’re in the present and it’s like the reader is lost to the world as much as Vasya.

The characters are all complex and brilliant. None are strictly good or evil, and some just exist with no inclination to pick a side of good or evil.

Vasya faces more heartache and trial than ever before and with my whole heart, I was hoping for an ending fitting for her and her story. Arden clearly delivered on this, the ending was perfect for this trilogy.

The pacing is intense. There is not one moment where I felt like I wanted to put the book down and come up for air, especially the last 150 pages.

I’m actually finding it hard to put into words just how much this book and the trilogy in its entirety mean to me. If I could buy copies for everyone interested in this trilogy just to give them a chance to read it, I would.

The story is also one that you could easily reread because now you know what to look for in terms of how early on and brilliantly Arden set up everything for this epic conclusion.

She broke my heart and put it back together again then put that cycle on repeat for the whole of the book.

I felt despair, joy, love, and determination. It was as if I were there with Vasya.

The world-building of the realms of Midnight and Winter are amazing and breathtaking and I’m so glad we got to see the realm of Midnight in this book.

It’s brilliant, start to finish. I love it, completely and entirely.

Five cups of coffee from me for this and the entire trilogy. Thank you to Anne Cater and Penguin Random House for a copy of this book in exchange for my honest opinion on the tour. [Sorry for a delay in posting today, it took me a while to work up the nerve to say goodbye to this book]

Content/Trigger Warnings: Death of animal(s), War/Violence, general heartache.

 

About the Author

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Born in Austin, Texas, Katherine Arden spent her junior year of high school in Rennes, France.
Following her acceptance to Middlebury College in Vermont, she deferred enrolment for a year in order to live and study in Moscow. At Middlebury, she specialized in French and Russian literature.
After receiving her BA, she moved to Maui, Hawaii, working every kind of odd job imaginable, from grant writing and making crepes to serving as a personal tour guide. After a year on the island, she moved to Briancon, France, and spent nine months teaching. She then returned to Maui, stayed for nearly a year, then left again to wander. Currently she lives in Vermont, but really you never know.
She is the author of The Bear and the Nightingale and The Girl in the Tower. These novels make up the first two parts of The Winternight Trilogy.

Author Links

Twitter | Website

 

The Rest of the Tour

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Charity Shop Haul

So…

It’s been a minute with this. To be fair it’s because we go shopping so often for books in charity shops that it would be too repetitive on the blog, so, here we are, and I’ve just gathered up some of my favorite buys recently so that I can share them.

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Most of these were 50P! The Lord of the Rings was 5, but the retail is 35, sooo I didn’t do too shabby! That means my old school LotR movie book with all three is now donated, and I also had an older cover of Maze Runner but now that I have matching covers, well, that’s gone to donation as well! I’ve also been wanting the Magnus Bane Chronicles but I had one on the kindle and it was one they were sold separately so I like this much better, looks like that’s one ebook I don’t have to keep on the Kindle anymore. I know. I have a problem.

I’m also going through my books once again, it’s time to clear some out now that we’re moving. It’s about time too as I really should be conscious of what books I might never read. I don’t plan on doing a huge cull, just taking into account what I truly never plan on reading, haha, that way someone else has a chance to read it.

It’s time for me to dive back into the neverending TBR. [Sidenote: Why you approve things so last minute NetGalley people? Do you hate me??]

Tell me what deals/books you’ve bought lately!