My Newest Obsession- Wintersong by S. Jae-Jones + INT Giveaway

If you follow me on Twitter you would have seen me screaming to the void about Wintersong and how desperately I want to read it. This book is inspired in part by Labyrinth– which was childhood favorite movie. I’ve spent years obsessed over The Goblin King and yearning for someone to take his character and delve deeper. My dreams have been answered and JJ has written a book I know I’ll love.

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About the Book

BWIntersongCovereware the goblin men and the wares they sell.

All her life, nineteen-year-old Liesl has heard tales of the beautiful, mysterious Goblin King. He is the Lord of Mischief, the Ruler Underground, and the muse around which her music is composed. Yet, as Liesl helps shoulder the burden of running her family’s inn, her dreams of composition and childish fancies about the Goblin King must be set aside in favor of more practical concerns.

But when her sister Käthe is taken by the goblins, Liesl journeys to their realm to rescue her sister and return her to the world above. The Goblin King agrees to let Käthe go—for a price. The life of a maiden must be given to the land, in accordance with the old laws. A life for a life, he says. Without sacrifice, nothing good can grow. Without death, there can be no rebirth. In exchange for her sister’s freedom, Liesl offers her hand in marriage to the Goblin King. He accepts.

Down in the Underground, Liesl discovers that the Goblin King still inspires her—musically, physically, emotionally. Yet even as her talent blossoms, Liesl’s life is slowly fading away, the price she paid for becoming the Goblin King’s bride. As the two of them grow closer, they must learn just what it is they are each willing to sacrifice: her life, her music, or the end of the world.

Coming February 7th 2017 by Thomas Dunne

This past week Griffin Teen graciously sent me the first 40 or so pages of the book to give me very much appreciated look at what I was looking forward to. To say I dropped everything to read would not be an exaggeration.

I have been waiting to get a feel for the atmosphere of the book and characters and this teaser was perfect to do just that. I immediately got swept away in the story and the visuals were PERFECT. As I read further, each page, inspired dread because I knew it would end and I’d be made to wait so long to read more. Some pain though is worth it, wouldn’t you agree?

WintersongBookstagram

The novel begins with a beautifully written overture about a boy and girl singing and dancing in the woods. The little girl never knows who the boy is but he asks her to marry him and plays games with her. This is such an excellent beginning and though not long it sets the story up and is so very vivid. I could feel the woods, I don’t know if it was supposed to, but it made me think of cool days and being chilled in the shadow of trees.

Chapter 1 introduces us to the main character and her sister. In only a few short chapters you get a very clear idea of these sisters personalities and how they interact with one another. I felt it was beautifully executed. Both sisters have fault and seem highly realistic in their passions and insecurities. Once the tall stranger enters the story I couldn’t help but picture David Bowie’s version of the Goblin King. Even if you aren’t a fan of Labyrinth JJ’s descriptions and the book’s atmosphere will have you visualizing the setting and characters.

I really could go on and on about these 44 pages I’ve just read but I think you get the idea. This book is beautifully written and after just a short teaser I am INVESTED. I want to know what will happen next. I am attached to the characters-though they are not perfect in the slightest (this honestly makes me even more attached to them).

Have you added this book to your to be read list? If not you SHOULD. Here it is on Goodreads. Also, you MUST check out the author’s website and sign up for her newsletter. Both are full of exclusive content you will want to see.

Giveaway

I’m giving away a pre-order of one Wintersong hardcover. This is international if Book Depository ships to your location.

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Review of Nevernight by Jay Kristoff

NevernightNevernight
By: Jay Kristoff
Release Date: August 9th 2016
Publisher: Thomas Dunne Books
Format: Print ARC
Source: Publisher

This book has mature sexual content and violence.

My Rating:
star

Summary:
In a land where three suns almost never set, a fledgling killer joins a school of assassins, seeking vengeance against the powers who destroyed her family.

Daughter of an executed traitor, Mia Corvere is barely able to escape her father’s failed rebellion with her life. Alone and friendless, she hides in a city built from the bones of a dead god, hunted by the Senate and her father’s former comrades. But her gift for speaking with the shadows leads her to the door of a retired killer, and a future she never imagined.

Now, Mia is apprenticed to the deadliest flock of assassins in the entire Republic—the Red Church. If she bests her fellow students in contests of steel, poison and the subtle arts, she’ll be inducted among the Blades of the Lady of Blessed Murder, and one step closer to the vengeance she desires. But a killer is loose within the Church’s halls, the bloody secrets of Mia’s past return to haunt her, and a plot to bring down the entire congregation is unfolding in the shadows she so loves.

Will she even survive to initiation, let alone have her revenge?

My Thoughts:
This was my first of Kristoff’s books to read (minus his co-authorship with Amie Kaufman with the Illuminae Files). I was really impressed with his writing, descriptions and character growth. Overall this book was a slowish read taking me a couple of weeks. I chose to take it slow because the writing was a bit dense and the world complex. For me, this was not a negative in the slightest. I love being fully immersed and really getting a lot of background and insight into all the characters.

Mia, our main character, was nothing short of bad-a**. She suffered through an awful event in her childhood and so she sought nothing more than revenge. I loved her drive (haha) and yet even with her complete dedication to revenge those that hurt her family she was still likeable, relatable and had heart. I wasn’t ever exactly sure what she’d do in a situation which made her unpredictable and honestly fun to read.

The secondary characters were amazing as well. Even those that barely made an appearance in the book *coughs* Lord Cassius *coughs* had me enthralled. I wanted to know MORE and this kept me reading. I was so impressed with the backstory we got for various characters- especially Tric. My goodness, I loved how detailed and yes, brutal, it all was. And brutal this book was- there was LOTS of gore, violence and blood. So much blood in fact there was an actual pool of it.

The story itself was so detailed and not predictable in the slightest. The pacing varied some with the start being a tad slower than the ending. I found that the build up and world building were so worth it in the end but those that are eager for a faster paced story might find their interest lagging. Kristoff added footnotes that were so clever and added little, insignificant at times, details about the world and society. I found them such a great touch.

As I mentioned above this book was geared to an older audience. There are sex scenes that are rather detailed so I’d put this in the adult fantasy category myself.  I think my favorite aspect of this book was that nothing felt unused- the details and little bits we learned along the way all sort of tied in to really immerse me into this world. It became real to me. I got very emotionally wrapped up in the characters and I honestly got a bit rattled at a couple of scenes. I was also surprised by various things that occurred as well.

Final Thoughts:
Nevernight was an intense book that build such a realistic world and characters I was completely immersed. Kristoff had the ability to shock me and really created a novel with incredible depth. I can’t wait to find out what happens in the sequel. With the mature content, detailed descriptions, violence and length this book reads like an adult book so YA fans be aware of this. nevernightpicHave you seen the UK cover?

 Nevernight nevernightuk

Which cover do you prefer? I really can’t say because the US fits the story so well but I’m so partial to crows. So- I must own both.