Monday, 23 July 2018

Review on Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda

When Simon Spier's classmate reads his emails, his whole world comes crashing down. Simon has been anonymously emailing Blue, a boy who is also hiding his identity. Simon knows that Blue goes to his school and is in his year, but has no way of discovering his identity. However, Simon shares a secret with Blue, something they have never shared with anyone else, which is they are both gay. Simon finds himself falling for Blue, and wanting to know his real identity, but will Simon feel the same way about Blue when he discovers who he really is?

OKAY I KNOW WHAT YOU'RE THINKING!! You're thinking this book should be right up my alley, why on earth haven't I read it sooner? I have no answer other than I'm a terrible person who procrastinates a lot. Honestly the only reason I read it when I did was because I was going to see Love,Simon, and refused to be one of those people who see the movie without reading the book. I'm also writing this review right before I see Love, Simon, so I don't get book details confused with movie details! Anyway, on with the review!

So if you've been living under a rock, the book is about a boy called Simon who has been emailing a boy from his school who he knows only as Blue. Both Simon and Blue are gay and in the closet, and find comfort in talking to each other about things they can't tell their friends or family. However, Simon's secret is in danger of being revealed when his classmate Martin reads his emails, and blackmails Simon into trying to get his friend Abby to go out with him. This review is just going to be me gushing about how much I love this book. I'm a pretty slow reader, but I read this in two days, and honestly didn't want it to end! My only regret is that I didn't read it sooner, as I have really been missing out on having Simon in my life.

One of the many things I loved about this book was the theme of friendship. Simon has a tight knit group of friends who he does everything with, and I was actually quite envious of this! True friendships are difficult to come by, and I hate to agree with Martin, but Simon was lucky to have such great friends who accepted him no matter what. I loved that the group wasn't perfect, and Simon argued with them all at some point, but what I loved was that although they fell out and disagreed, they always came back together. I felt that this was a sign of a strong friendship, as it's so easy to fall out with a friend and never speak to them again. I also loved that Abby was a part of their group, as she was a new addition. I feel as if it's difficult to get into a group of friends who have been friends for years without feeling like an outsider, so I loved how Simon seemed just as close with her as he was with Nick and Leah.

One of the main plot points is Simon trying to guess Blue's identity, and I was surprised that I correctly guessed who Blue was about halfway through the book. I'm not sure if it was obvious or if I'm the next Sherlock Holmes, but I seemed to be picking up on clues that Simon wasn't. I thought that Simon would have figured it out before meeting Blue, but I have to admit that their first meeting was completely adorable.

With the exception of Martin I adored all the characters, and I especially loved how the typical American high school cliques weren't a thing. Simon was friends with both the football players and the theatre geeks, and I loved how certain stereotypes were broken, such as the lead in the theatre group being nice instead of being bitchy, and the jocks being smart. I particularly loved Leah, and the fact that she loved anime and shipped Drarry made me wish she was a real person so I could be friends with her! I did feel sorry for Leah at times, especially when her friends went out somewhere without inviting her. It's horrible feeling as if your friends don't want you around, so I related to how horrible it made Leah feel.

Just in case anyone hasn't read the book or watched the movie I won't reveal Blue's identity, but I have to talk about the romance as it was completely adorable. I'm all for including sexy times in YA, but the fact that there wasn't any of that didn't bother me, as the romance was just so pure and adorable! My heart couldn't cope with the cute, and Blue was the purest cinnamon roll who instantly clicked with Simon when they met. They were both so cute and shy around each other and honestly I think I have a new OTP!

I'm really looking forward to seeing the movie which I will have seen by the time this review goes up. (Update from me in the future: IT WAS AMAZING!) and I think I am now officially a Becky fan!

  | Amazon Book Depository

Monday, 16 July 2018

Blog Tour- A Bad Boy Stole My Bra

Hellllooooo, welcome to my stop on the A Bad Boy Stole My Bra blog tour. I thought I'd share my thoughts on the book with you all with a good ole fashion review.

When Alec Wilde moves in next door, the last thing Riley expects is to find him in her room in the middle of the night holding her bra! When Alec refuses to give it back (it was a dare after all) Riley decides to get her revenge with a series of pranks. Riley soon discovers that Alec isn't just the bad boy everyone thinks he is, and there may be a reason as to why he acts that way. However, Riley has her own secret, something so terrible that she hasn't even told her best friend. Riley must decide between revealing her secret to her friends or cutting herself off from them, but which will she choose?

So the cover of this book is eye-catching to say the least! The title of this book is brilliant, and it immediately reminded me of the Georgia Nicolson books. I love reading funny books, so I was excited to read this one.

The book follows Riley, a girl who wakes up in the middle of the night to find her attractive new neighbour in her room stealing her bra! After trying and failing to get it back, Riley decides to get him back by pranking him. I loved the pranks and how Riley got herself into some hilariously awkward situations. The pranks often backfired on her and I loved the playful relationship she had with Alec. The lighthearted funny moments were exactly what I had expected from this book!

I usually love a good plot twist, but I didn't really enjoy the subplot involving Riley's cousin. I felt as if it made the story too dark, and this wasn't hinted at in the summary, and definitely didn't fit in with the bright yellow cover! I feel as if people who read this book wanting a funny, cheesy romance probably won't enjoy this part, as to me it just didn't fit in with the rest of the book.

Apart from Riley and Alec, the rest of the characters were pretty two dimensional, especially Alec's friends who were practically interchangeable. The majority of the side characters lacked personality, and even the physical descriptions of the boys were identical. I wish fictional teenage boys would stop being described as having “chiseled abs”, as I'm pretty sure not one boy in my school had abs. Teenage boys usually don't have the time or money to hit the gym every day.

Riley was a likable character, and was easy to sympathise with. I loved that she was a geek and was obsessed with horror movies, and how she was constantly getting herself into awkward situations. I felt as if her mental health problems needed more research, as although she is described as having anxiety, to me it looked a lot more like PTSD, something that isn't brought up as often in YA. Riley's anxiety and panic attacks are always triggered by memories of a certain traumatic event from her past, but the fact that what she has is actually PTSD is never brought up. Something else that I didn't like was how Riley constantly described herself as being a loner and an outsider, which obviously isn't the case, as she is invited to house parties and is friends with some of the most popular boys in her school. As someone who went through school being constantly bullied and having one or two friends, I don't think Riley truly understood what being an outsider was.

I have mixed feelings about Alec. I found him to be sweet, kind and funny at times, and I particularly enjoyed his terrible pickup lines. However, he was also quite possessive and got angry and jealous whenever a boy showed interest in Riley despite Riley not being his girlfriend. Instead of admitting he had feelings for Riley, he acted as if he didn't care about her, which I felt was quite a childish reaction. To me, his reactions seemed too aggressive, as he even got angry when one of his friends was interested in Riley. There were times when I really wanted Riley to call him out for his behaviour, but she was quite passive.

Unfortunately, this wasn't the laugh out loud book I thought it was going to be, and although it started out promising, it soon took a more serious turn. I think I would have enjoyed it a lot more if it had just stuck to being a funny, lighthearted book, as sometimes I just want to read something happy without the characters going through life-changing trauma. I loved the pranks, the banter, the bad pick up lines and the chemistry between Riley and Alec, but unfortunately, everything else fell a little flat for me.

Monday, 9 July 2018

Floored Blog Tour

So I have something a little different for you today. As you may know, Floored is a collaborative novel written by seven amazing authors! MyKindaBook came up with the awesome idea of seven bloggers collaborating to create seven different posts in whatever format we want, as long as it celebrates the release of Floored. We were each given a line from one of the first seven chapters to focus on and base our post around, and my chapter 's first line was “The woman on the reception desk knew.” This chapter was narrated by Kaitlyn, but it made me wonder what would have happened if this first line had been another character! I noticed that Kaitlyn doesn't properly interact with Hugo until they are inside the lift, so I thought it would be interesting to write a fanfiction on what I think might have happened if they had talked sooner. This is of course completely my take on things, and has nothing to do with the actual canon of the story (which is far better than my fanfiction of course!) Even though Hugo was an awful person at this point, I actually found it really fun writing a fic from his point of view!

The woman on the reception desk knew. I could tell she was trying to be subtle, trying to act as if I was just another nobody kid here for work experience, but the way she looked at me gave her away. How did she know? It's not like my face is plastered all over the front page of the tabloids like my father. Maybe mother has been talking about me? She works here, so of course the woman would know her. Everyone knows her. She probably saw the name “Delaney” and instantly knew who I was. I mean it's not exactly a common name, not a name that people around here would have. I wanted to see the look of surprise on her face when I told her that mother was actually Margot Delaney, but no, she ruined that by looking up my damn name before I could even get the words out, then stuttered something about having to do some stupid health and safety thing on the ninth floor. She didn't even tell me where the lifts were! Maybe I should tell mother about how she is clearly inadequate at her job, I'm sure she could get her fired.

The lobby looks like a zoo. People are mingling around the lifts, watching as the numbers slowly come down to the ground floor. The thought of being stuck in one of those boxes with these sweaty morons for nine floors is making me feel ill, but climbing up nine floors in this heat doesn't seem like a much better option. Someone suddenly barges into me from behind, making me stumble into the woman in front who looks at me as if I just kicked her dog.
“Don't blame me. Blame the moron who walked into me.” I turn around to see who the hell it was, and see a girl with a blue streak in her hair like some sort of crackhead smurf. Seriously, how does she think that looks good? If people from around here actually do shit like that, the north is even worse off than I thought. She hasn't even apologised for nearly knocking me over, honestly the nerve of some people.
“Oi!” I say, waving my hand in front of her face. “You blind or something?”
“Yes, actually,” she says before looking horrified. “I mean no! I'm not blind, you were just in my way.”
Oh no, this chick is actually blind. I'm officially the worst person in the world. I'm not going to apologize though, that's not what I do.
“Well you need to watch where you're going,” I say, trying to keep my voice harsh. What am I even doing? I'm yelling at a blind person. But is she really blind? She's glaring at me, her eyes practically boring into my soul. Honestly if looks could kill.
“I'm sorry your highness,” she says, the sarcasm practically dripping off her. “I'll look where I'm going next time.”
Who the hell does she think she is? I swear she better not be here for work experience too. I don't think I can cope with a week in her company. Will everyone be like her? God, I hope not or I might just have to hurl myself out of the 9th story window.
The girl smirks, obviously thinking she's got the better of me.
“You here for work experience?” I ask, hoping to god the answer is no.
“Not that it has anything to do with you, but yes,” she answers. Of fucking course. “I assume I'll have the pleasure of your company for a week.”
“Unfortunately for me, yes.” Why am I even still talking to her? Normally I wouldn't give someone like her the time of day. I mean she's pretty enough I guess, but I can't look away from that stupid blue streak for long enough to find out if I'm actually attracted to her. My guess would be no, I mean I do have standards after all.
“Dawson Sharman is here,” she blurts out before immediately looking as if she regrets it.
“Who the hell is that?”
“From Dedman High. Sorry I just, he's a bit of a dickhead actually.”
“Dawson Sha-” I trail off as I finally recognise the name. “You're fucking kidding me, the guy who had the unfortunate incident with his face?” That's what he's famous for now, the child actor who got fucked over by puberty. Honestly I thought puberty was meant to make you more attractive, but Dawson looks like he got beaten with the ugly stick. “Where is he?” I stand on my toes to try to get a better view over the lift crowd.
“Talking to the guy with the bleached teeth,” smurf girl replies.
“Ah! I see him.” I immeditetly get my phone out to snap some pictures. God, he really is hideous. I'm pretty sure he looks even worse in real life. David is going to love this.
“Do you think he's on the work experience with us?”
“Doubt it,” smurf girl replies. I should really get her name if we're going to be working together for a week. Not that it matters, after Sunday I'll never see her or her stupid hair ever again, but I guess it wouldn't be too bad to have someone to talk to.
“I'm Hugo by the way,” I say as one of the lifts finally arrives. Thank god.
“Kaitlyn,” she replies. “Nice to meet you.

 Be sure to check out the rest of the dates on the blog tour!!

Friday, 29 June 2018

Pride Reads


The sun is shining, it's not dark when we wake up in the morning and everything is extra gay, honestly could life get any better? Well it's about to, as I'm going to recommend some of my favourite LGBT+ reads to you! 

If you haven't heard of this one then WHERE HAVE YOU BEEN?Seriously bro do you even read? This book has been adapted
into a movie you might have heard of called Love, Simon,
and both the book and the movie are fantastic! We may have
a long way to go to achieve equality, but the fact that we have
a gay romcom showing in the cinema is a big deal, and I'm
honestly so proud. If you're reading my blog right now then
you probably already know all about this book, but I just had
to include it because I love it so much!

So this is the only book on this list that isn't YA, but the characters
are in University so are only a little older than your typical YA character. Every time I recommend this book, I do have to point
out how dark it is, as the characters suffer throughout the series,
and there are some horrible torture and rape scenes. This one
is definitely not suitable for younger readers, but it is a fantastic series with brilliantly diverse characters. Despite everything these
characters go through, the series does have a happy ending!

This one is a fantasy, but the main characters are LGBT and it's
one of my all time favourite books so of course I had to include
it! In short, this book is what Harry Potter would be like if Drarry
was canon. Along with the enemies to lovers trope, you get a gay vampire, a school of magic called Watford, and a dragon. Really
what more could you want? If you miss Harry Potter then honestly this is the next best thing.


Please read this book and appreciate my bisexual son Monty and
his gay boyfriend Percy. I adore everything about this book and
it's practically impossible to not fall in love with Monty. Monty makes some bad decisions which include stealing from the Palace of Versailles, getting chased across Europe by highwaymen and
drinking copious amounts of alcohol.
This book includes the friends to lovers trope WHICH IS MY ABSOLUTE FAVE. Honestly the romance in this book is the cutest  thing ever and you can personally complain to me if you don't love it.

you don't laugh out loud at least once while reading this book
then you seriously lack a sense of humor. The book follows
Noah, a teenage boy who is having a terrible time at school.
Things go from bad to worse when his best friend Harry kisses
 him at a party, making their once simple friendship complicated.
This book was pretty much perfection, and I've recently finished
 the sequel which is equally hilarious! I find that a lot of LGBT+
books are either serious or sad,so these are perfect if you want
 a more light hearted read.

This is quite an old book now, but I only read it for the first time
last year. It follows George, a young transgender girl who is
desperate to play the role of Charlotte in her school production
of Charlotte's Web. However, everyone sees George as a boy,
and her teacher doesn't even allow her to audition for the part.
I was actually quite shocked when I found out this was a middle
grade book, as I had never come across a trans character in
middle grade before. I loved how positive the message in this
book was. The suicide rate for young trans people is outrageously high, and this book shows how it's important for parents and
teachers to respect the gender identity of children rather than
                                 trying to force them to accept the gender that was assigned to
                                them at birth.

Please let me know if you've read any of these as I would love to kno your thoughts! Also I'm always on the lookout for books with LGBT+ rep, so please reccomend me your favourites!

Monday, 25 June 2018

Blog Tour- Just Don't Mention It

Tyler Bruce is your typical badboy. He drinks, does drugs and drives around fast in his expensive car. However, no one knows that all these things are just a distraction for Tyler. A distraction from thinking about how his dad physically abused him for four years of his life. When Tyler's stepsister Eden comes to visit, Tyler finds himself unable to keep up the badboy facade with her. Eden seems to see right through him, and Tyler's walls that he has so carefully constructed over the years start to crumble.
From the bestselling author of the DIMILY series, Just Don't Mention it focuses on Tyler's story, and how he became the person that Eden first meets in Did I Mention I Love You?

SO TODAY IS MY STOP ON THE JUST DON'T MENTION IT BLOG TOUR!! I thought I'd share my thoughts on the book and probably annoy the hardcore fans with my opinions. That's not to say I'm not a fan of the DIMILY series, the fact is that (plot twist) I haven't actually read it. Now before you gasp in horror, I did try! I fully intended to read the series before JDMI, but as it is such a popular series, all the copies were checked out of my local library. I do fully intend on reading the series at some point, but for now you'll have to accept the fact that my opinions on this book may be a little different than someone who has already followed these characters for three books, so apologies if I'm completely clueless on some things!

So from what I've learnt, this book is a retelling of the first book in the series from Tyler's point of view rather than Eden's. I can see why this would resonate with fans of the series, as Eden doesn't actually find out about Tyler's abusive childhood until towards the end of the book, whereas in JDMI, Tyler is struggling with his past throughout the book. I think I was giving Tyler a pass for being such an asshole because I knew why he was acting that way, whereas if I had read DIMILY first, I probably would have hated him. Reading this book has definitely made me want to read DIMILY, as I would love to know Eden's initial thoughts on Tyler.

The book is split into two parts, with the chapters alternating between the present and five years ago. Seeing Tyler's past and how the abuse he endured from his father was still affecting his mental health five years later was particularly difficult to read. I feel as if anyone who has suffered from physical abuse should be wary about reading this book, as although it is clearly an important topic that should be made aware of, I feel as if it could be particularly upsetting for people who can relate to Tyler's story. It was horrible to see Tyler defending his dad and lying to his mum about where he was getting his injuries so he wouldn't hurt his family. Although Tyler's mum was loving and caring, she was also missing some pretty big warning signs. She never questioned why Tyler was constantly getting injured so often, putting it down to Tyler hurting himself out of clumsiness. I felt as if she should have at least questioned the frequency he was getting hurt, and noticing how Tyler was frequently studying instead of playing with his brothers. Even though no parent wants to think that their child may be getting physically abused, it's important to question it if they're constantly covered in bruises. Tyler was too afraid to tell anyone, but he did want someone to know, so I felt as if he would have told the truth to an adult he trusted if they had been the first one to bring it up.

Being abused as a child often leads to mental health problems later in life, which is exactly what happened to Tyler. He felt as if he couldn't tell his friends about what had happened to him, as he was afraid of coming across as weak. I loved how he eventually felt as if he was able to open up to Eden, and not have to keep up the bad boy act with her. I did however feel as if Eden was a little pushy at times.

I'm a little torn over the romance side of things, as although it was sweet at times, I felt as if Tyler and Eden were constantly making bad decisions. I was shocked that Eden would kiss Tyler while knowing that he had a girlfriend, as she initially came across as quiet and shy. I felt as if her personality changed drastically, as she was soon kissing someone else's boyfriend and getting drunk at parties. Although Tiffani was horrible and manipulative, I still don't think she deserved to be cheated on along with having to find that out from someone else. Something else I was surprised at was how Eden seemed to go straight from hating Tyler to kissing him. Now I'm all for the enemies to lovers trope, but it seemed to come out of nowhere. I'm sure if I had read DIMILY and saw the situation from Eden's perspective, this wouldn't have been the case, but from Tyler's point of view, there didn't seem to be any sort of build up.

Both Estelle and the publisher have told me JDMI can be read as a stand alone, but I do personally think that I would have enjoyed the book more if I had read DIMILY first. I think reading Eden's story first would definitely have made me more invested in Tyler's story, as there were quite a few things that Eden did that had me wondering what the reasoning behind them was.I also feel as if I would have liked Eden more as a character if I had known her thoughts and feelings. Even though I wasn't that keen on the romance, I did love the important messages, and I definitely want to read DIMILY to see if my opinions on Eden change!

Half ratings aren't something I usually do, but I think I would have to make an exception for this one and give it a 3.5

Just Don't Mention It is now available to purchase!

  | Amazon Book Depository

Be sure to check out the rest of the stops on the blog tour!

Friday, 8 June 2018

Review on Starfish

Kiko Himura has her heart set on going to Prism, one of the best art schools in the country. However, Kiko doesn't get in, and with no backup school, she has no idea what to do next. When her best friend leaves for college early, Kiko seems doomed to spend the summer with her self obsessed mother and her two brothers who she barely speaks to, but her plans all change when she bumps into Jamie, an old childhood friend who moved to California. Jamie convinces Kiko to spend the summer with him in California, where she will be able to look into alternative art schools. However, leaving her family behind turns out to be more difficult than Kiko anticipated.

So I accidentally judged this book by it's cover and thought it was going to be a Sci-Fi book before reading the summary! The cover is completely gorgeous, and as I own about 100 galaxy themed things, it fits my aesthetic perfectly. However the cover doesn't really give the genre away, and I don't think anyone would guess it was a contemporary book just from looking at the cover. I definitely don't think the packaging fits the content, but the cover is definitely eye catching!

The book follows Kiko, a girl who has just graduated from high school and is looking to get into art school. Kiko doesn't get along with her family, and is desperate to move away from home for school. When Kiko doesn't get a place in the only school she applied to, she has no idea what to do about her future. Something that I immedietly loved was how it showed that sometimes our plans don't go the way we thought they would, and we are forced to find alternatives. Life is never smooth sailing, it is full of seemingly unclimbable mountains and ditches we can't seem to scramble out of. As I currently have no idea what I'm doing with my life, I related to Kiko's struggles.

Something that came up quite a lot in the book was Kiko's heritage. Kiko is mixed race, with a white mum and Japanese dad. Kiko feels as if she doesn't belong anywhere, and starts believing her mothers ridiculous beauty standards. Kiko's mother is awful to her, and along with blaming Kiko for practically everything, she makes her feel ugly by idolising blonde, white girls. I hated that Kiko's mum would treat her own daughter this way, and I was happy that Kiko eventually discovered what having a real family is like, and realised that beauty doesn't have a race, as not only white girls can be beautiful.

We often see siblings who get along well and siblings who hate each other, but we rarely see siblings who are indifferent to each other. Kiko cares about her brothers, but she has nothing in common with them, and rarely spends time with them. This is similar to the relationship my mum has with her siblings, so I thought it was interesting to see a character in a similar situation. I did find it a little sad that they didn't get along, as they all had one thing in common, which was hating living with their mum. I felt really bad for Kiko's younger brother, and felt as if he wouldn't have had such a hard time if he hadn't felt so alone. It's important for children to be able to tell people how they're feeling, and Shoji wasn't able to do that.

I talked about Kiko's anxiety and how I related to it in my Starfish blog tour post, but I'm going to touch on it a little here too. I was really happy with how it was dealt with, as I see way too many books that treat anxiety as if it's a character quirk rather than a mental health problem. I related to Kiko a lot, especially with her not being able to go to new places alone. I also loved how although Jamie helped Kiko with her anxiety, he didn't miracuously cure it. Something I hate is the idea that boyfriends are a cure all. Boys can't cure mental illnesses by being cute and charming, so I loved how what happened was realistic.

Hiroshi was an interesting character, and I loved how he became a father figure to Kiko. I loved how he made Kiko feel proud of her Japanese heritage instead of ashamed, and how she got to experience Japanese culture for the first time. Hiroshi was a brilliant role model, and I loved how Kiko slowly started to realise how incapable her mum was at parenting.

The one thing I didn't enjoy that much about this book was the romance. There are times when I love the friends to lovers trope, but it was too obvious from the start that they were going to end up together romantically. I loved that they had been friends for so long, and as platonic relationships between boys and girls are rare in YA, I think I would have preferred if they had stayed friends.

Overall I loved this book, and I thought it dealt perfectly with anxiety, race and family issues. This was a brilliant debut novel, and I look forward to reading more from Akemi in the future!
Starfish is now available to purchase!

  | Amazon Book Depository

Saturday, 26 May 2018

Review on The Smoke Thieves

When Princess Catherine is forced into an arranged marriage, she is anything but happy. Her father seems to care more about the alliance of the kingdoms than her happiness, and Catherine suspects her father is after something else, the demon smoke. Apart from causing people to feel happier and being sold for high prices, the smoke seems to have no other purpose, but then why would King Aloysius be so determined to get hold of it? Meanwhile, Catherine's cousin Edyon has his own problems to deal with. As Prince Thelonius' illegitimate child, Edyon has lived his life not knowing who his father is, but that all changes when he meets March, a servant who works for his father. However, March hates Prince Thelonius, and intends to lead Edyon to King Aloysius rather than to his father, where he will likely be imprisoned, but will March be able to bring himself to hand Edyon over? With Pitoria on the brink of war, Catherine will need all the help she can get, including that of Edyon, March, and a young demon hunter who may have the answers that Catherine needs.

So as I've mentioned a few (hundred) times, fantasy is my favourite genre, so I was looking forward to reading this book. The book is seperated into five seperate character point of views, with the chapters alternating between which character we are following. All the characters are somehow linked to each other, with them all meeting up by the end of the book. As I knew all the different narratives had to be linked somehow, it kept me wondering how their stories were connected to each other, and how everything would come together.

Something that I loved was how the characters all had different backgrounds, and were so different from each other. There was everything from princesses to servants, and I loved seeing how different their lives were from each other. I particularly loved Tash, a young girl who had been sold to a demon hunter, and was now used as bait in hunting demons. I loved how smart and funny she was, and how she was so confident in her demon hunting abilities when men twice her size were too afraid to go near them.

Although I loved Edyon, March and Tash, I wasn't that keen on Catherine and Ambrose. I found Catherine to be quite dull, and although she was smart in her tactics to get the people on her side, she wasn't the strong female character that Tash was, and at times fit into the cliché of the princess who needs to be saved. I also felt as if Ambrose was lacking the personality that the other characters had, and it seemed like his main purpose was to be a love interest for Catherine. I also wasn't keen on the love triangle that Catherine being engaged to the prince caused. Sadly for the majority of the book, I slogged through most of Catherine and Ambrose's chapters to get back to the other characters storylines.

I found March, Edyon and Tash's storylines far more interesting, and I particularly enjoyed reading about March and Edyon's journey. Edyon was a sweet character who made some bad decisions, and I felt bad for him a lot of the time. I loved March's character development, and how he eventually realised that Edyon wasn't like his father. March initially saw Edyon as an extension of his father, and had no remorse in handing him over to the enemy, but eventually came to trust him. I loved the relationship that slowly started to build between the two boys, and it was completely adorable how flustered March got over Edyon's advances. It's rare to find a gay romance in YA fantasy, so I loved how this was included without there being uneccicary drama or it being a major plot point. I felt as if they had more chemistry than Catherine and Ambrose, and their relationship seemed to progress naturally (A.K.A SLOW BURN MY ACTUAL FAVOURITE TROPE), while Catherine and Ambrose's relationship centred around forbidden love (a.k.a my least favourite trope), and there wasn't that much interaction or development between the two.

Something that I loved was the unlikly friendship between Edyon and Tash. I felt as if their personalities fit well together, and I loved their interactions with each other. I loved that although Edyon had stolen from her, she forgave him, and wasn't willing to steal from him later on in the book. I would love for these two to interact more in the next book and become friends!

It's quite difficult for me to rate this book, as if it hadn't been for Catherine's storyline I would definitely have given it five stars. Honestly I just need a spin off series of Tash and March hunting demons together while Edyon screams and hides. In the next book I would love to see more demon hunting, more Tash, and for Edyon and March's relationship to develop further (boyfriends, I want them to be boyfriends). I'm also looking forward to seeing how the battle turns out, as the book ended on a huge cliffhanger. I definitely want to continue reading this series!

The Smoke Thieves is now available to purchase!

  | Amazon Book Depository