Here we are at the last book in the Diviners quartet, a YA series I’ve been enjoying since 2019, managing to read a book a year with Rachel at Life of a Female Bibliophile.
So far, I’ve enjoyed each book in the series more than the one that precedes it. But after completing the third book, Before the Devil Breaks You, I became worried that the last book wouldn’t measure up to the previous books and successfully wrap up all the plot threads. Well, now that I’ve completed the last book, it certainly wasn’t the reading experience I hoped for or expected.
YA Historical Fiction; Paranormal
Diviners, book 4
The King of Crows picks up immediately after Before the Devil Breaks You. Will and Mabel are dead. Jake Marlowe is gaining more influence and painting the Diviners as threats to society by posing the deceased Sarah Snow as some sort of saint. The Diviner Crew are at a loss and are running out of options on how to figure out their powers and defeat the King of Crows.
I’ve been battling a blogging slump since the beginning of this year and it recently became worse, so my posting hasn’t been consistent lately, and I’m behind on many reviews. Actually, the comics I’m discussing in this post were read way earlier this year, in March and April. So, due to those factors, my thoughts on them might not be as detailed as usual.
Mirka Andolfo’s Mercy: The Fair Lady, the Frost, and the Fiend by Mirka Andolfo (illus.), transl. from the Italian by Arancia Studio
The story is set in a small town in Washington state during the Klondike Gold Rush of the late 19th century. The Swanson family controls the town and seems to run everything, even the brothels. In the prologue, the Swansons seem to have found a portal in one of the gold mines through which monsters can enter. These monsters can take on human form, and some of them are already in the world — a group of Native Americans hunt them.
I really enjoy this series. I’ve even started to consider it a favorite. I own none of the books, but believe me, I will get myself the boxed set, if there’s one, soon.
I also want to read more books by Libba Bray. Does she only write YA novels? I’m not big on YA, but I’ll read whatever she has written because the Diviners books are SO good and I need more.
I have one more book to go in this series, which I’ve been buddy-reading with Rachel at Life of a Female Bibliophile and which we’ve both been enjoying and having loads of great discussions about. Things have built up to such a height in this book that I wonder how we’ll get down from it. How will things be resolved? I’m a little anxious that I won’t like the last book, but… I’m trusting Bray on this. Trying to stay positive here, and I NEED to get my own copy of these books!!
Historical Fiction; Paranormal
Diviners, book 3
The sleeping sickness has stopped, but all is not back to rights. Ghosts are roaming the city, some of them malicious, and the Diviner crew is even more curious about their abilities, how they got them and to what extent can they use them.
This one was very popular last year, when it was published. I remember seeing it chatted about on many blogs and many of my trusted blogs for book recommendations enjoyed it as well. All that got me curious and made me place it on my TBR.
Then, because the title says it’s a story about a book club, my book club selected it as one of our reads, which I was grateful for because as much as I’d like to read the books on my TBR and shelves soon after placing them there, they most often just remain in those places unread for years. So I read it for book club, and it made for great discussions since we disagreed on a variety of things about the book. In the end, I think I ended up enjoying it a bit more than my fellow book clubbers did.
Fried Green Tomatoes and Steel Magnolias meet Dracula in this Southern-flavored supernatural thriller set in the ’90s about a women’s book club that must protect its suburban community from a mysterious and handsome stranger who turns out to be a blood-sucking fiend.
Here’s another comic book I read for Wyrd & Wonder waaay back in May. I think it was on the recommendations shelf of the comic bookshop I frequent, and it was that and the synopsis that got me interested.
Manor Black, Vol. 1 by Cullen Bunn & Brian Hurtt, illus. by Tyler Crook
From the creators of Harrow County and The Sixth Gun comes this gothic horror fantasy about a family of sorcerers in crisis.
Roman Black is the moribund patriarch of a family of powerful sorcerers. As his wicked and corrupt children fight over who will take the reins of Manor Black and representative of the black arts, Roman adopts a young mage who he gifts his powers to with the hope that someone good will take his place against the evil forces out to bring down his family and legacy. (Goodreads)
Because this is a story about magicians, I went in thinking it was solely fantasy-based, despite the horror vibe the cover gives off what with the black and red colors and the style of the typography for the title, which makes me think of slasher films.
I get some of my audio books through Audible, mostly Harry Potter, Wheel of Time, and other audios of books I’ve already read. My plan was to get all the Harry Potter ones and then cancel my account, but sometimes when I want something to listen to, it has a long wait list at the library, so for now I still have my Audible account and with it the Originals — I get 2 Audible Original productions per month for free.
Until I listened to Evil Eye, I’d avoided the Originals. I didn’t know what they were and didn’t care, but Evil Eye convinced me otherwise.
Pallavi is an aspiring writer living in California. Her mother, Usha, is thousands of miles away in Delhi – and obsessed with finding her daughter a husband.
My reading experience with Seth Grahame-Smith’s Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter was one of the best I’ve ever had. While reading the book, I went on a guided bus tour of Washington, D.C., and was told facts that confirmed some of the passages from the story.
I also visited an old train museum and read the book while sitting in its café area, which was restored to maintain how it looked back in the late 1800s. Doing so also helped to cement the novel’s worldbuilding in my mind making it easier for me to imagine the setting. I felt as if I was looking out on history while reading a story that called to it.
While Abraham Lincoln is widely lauded for saving a Union and freeing millions of slaves, his valiant fight against the forces of the undead has remained in the shadows for hundreds of years. That is, until Seth Grahame-Smith stumbled upon The Secret Journal of Abraham Lincoln, and became the first living person to lay eyes on it in more than 140 years.
Using the journal as his guide and writing in the grand biographical style of Doris Kearns Goodwin and David McCullough, Seth has reconstructed the true life story of our greatest president for the first time-all while revealing the hidden history behind the Civil War and uncovering the role vampires played in the birth, growth, and near-death of our nation. (Goodreads)
Watching the movie before reading the book seems the best way to go. I first tested this theory with Beautiful Creatures. I enjoyed the movie so much that I forced myself through the first pages of the story to discover a book I enjoyed. Again, the theory proves true for Vampire Academy. The movie was entertaining and Zoey Deutch, who played Rose, was funny (after reading the book, I realized that she did a great job of capturing the character).
Rosemarie “Rose” Hathaway and the princess, Vasilisa “Lissa” Dragomir, are best friends connected by a one-sided psychic bond that allows Rose to access Lissa’s thoughts, emotions, and experiences. They attend St. Vladimir’s Academy, a boarding school for vampires (moroi, the good vampires) and their guardians (dhampir, half-vampires that protect the moroi from strigoi, evil vampires). When the novel begins, Rose and Lissa have been on the run for two years. St. Vladimir’s is no longer a safe place for the princess so Rose, who proclaims herself Lissa’s guardian, hatched a plan to ditch school and seek protection in the wide, unknown world.