Book Review · Books

Family of Liars by E. Lockhart [BOOK REVIEW]

Family of Liars by E. Lockhart [BOOK REVIEW]

I am so excited I got to read “Family of Liars” before its publication date and receive an uncorrected proof. This review is SPOILER FREE for both “Family of Liars” and “We Were Liars“.

About The Book:

Family of Liars by E. Lockhart [BOOK REVIEW]


Pages: 298

Format I read it in: Uncorrected Proof (paperback)

Publisher: Hot Key Books

Purchase Links:
Amazon UK | Amazon US

★★★★

Synopsis:

The prequel to We Were Liars takes readers back to the story of another summer, another generation, and the secrets that will haunt them for decades to come.

A windswept private island off the coast of Massachusetts.
A hungry ocean, churning with secrets and sorrow.
A fiery, addicted heiress. An irresistible, unpredictable boy.
A summer of unforgivable betrayal and terrible mistakes.

Welcome back to the Sinclair family.
They were always liars.

My Thoughts:

“Family of Liars” is the prequel of “We Were Liars” and it features the parents from “We Were Liars” as teenagers. “Family of Liars” contains spoilers for “We Were Liars”, so if you haven’t read any of the books, I strongly recommend reading “We Were Liars” first, and then reading “Family of Liars”. I won’t give too much information on the synopsis – same like the first book, this one is better reading blind. I’ll just say this -it features the same private island, the year is 1987 and some new characters join our characters for the summer, when everything kicks off.

If you enjoyed “We Were Liars”, you will also enjoy this book! I don’t want to say it follows the same template, but it kind of does. The chapter flows in the same way, as well as the writing – still beautiful and easy to read. This writing style is a style I really enjoyed reading. If for some reason the writing bothered you in the first book, be aware that it’s very similar here too.

The emotion side was more enhanced in this book. I felt more love, heartbreak, anger and sadness and I loved it so much! I was expecting a twist this time though, and I did get it. And then I got a few more I wasn’t expecting. However, the twists in this book didn’t give the chock or wow factor and didn’t have the same intensity. They were still very cleverly done and I did not see them coming.

In my opinion, “We Were Liars” was amazing and “Family of Liars” just couldn’t top that. But that being set aside, this book was extremely enjoyable and incredibly gripping. A must-read for the fans of this genre and fans of the series. There’s definitely something about this private island that will always tickle my curiosity!

About The Author:

Family of Liars by E. Lockhart [BOOK REVIEW]

E. Lockhart is the author of Again Again, Genuine Fraud, We Were Liars, The Disreputable History of Frankie Landau-Banks, and several other books. Whistle: A New Gotham CIty Hero is a graphic novel.

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Book Review · Books

We Were Liars by E. Lockhart [BOOK REVIEW]

We Were Liars by E. Lockhart [BOOK REVIEW] I definitely recommend it! If you pick this book up, you'll definitely be in for a treat.

We Were Liars found me, instead of the other way around. It was hidden in the pile of books in my sister’s room and something compelled me to touch it. Then I read the synopsis, and it didn’t reveal anything. So of course, I wanted to know more. I needed to know more.

About The Book:

We Were Liars by E. Lockhart [BOOK REVIEW] I definitely recommend it! If you pick this book up, you'll definitely be in for a treat.


Pages: 225

Format I read it in: Paperback

Publisher: Hot Key Books

Purchase Links:
Amazon UK | Amazon US

★★★★★

Synopsis:

A beautiful and distinguished family.
A private island.
A brilliant, damaged girl; a passionate, political boy.
A group of four friends—the Liars—whose friendship turns destructive.
A revolution. An accident. A secret.
Lies upon lies.
True love.
The truth.

We Were Liars is a modern, sophisticated suspense novel from New York Times bestselling author, National Book Award finalist, and Printz Award honoree E. Lockhart.

Read it.

And if anyone asks you how it ends, just LIE.

My Thoughts:

As you can see, the synopsis doesn’t give too much information. The mystery of it all brought out a curiosity I thought I had lost. We tend to rely so much on synopsis these days, that we become afraid to pick up books when we don’t know what they’re about. And I am so glad I dived into this one blind – it’s the only way to go!

And what an adventure this book is. We Were Liars is a story about a young lady and an accident. As we go through the book, we find out more and more about this lady, her family, her friends. A lot of lies, a lot of secrets, a lot of unknowns – all with a chill mood of young people having fun and easy to read chapters.

The book is quite short – 225 pages, and for instance, the chapters are very short too, with a lot of dialogues or easy monologues. As soon as you start reading, you get immersed into that world and you can’t stop reading.

And then we get to THE PLOT TWIST!!

I was very pleasantly stunned when I finished the book. I was hooked throughout the whole book and wasn’t sure what I was expecting, but it definitely wasn’t that plot twist for sure! The ending was so shocking, that even now thinking back, I’m still shocked and amazed at how cleverly E. Lockhart did everything and set us up for that ending.

We Were Liars is one of those books that you just have to re-read again, just to see if you have missed any clues along the way and re-read the same story, knowing what you now know.

I definitely recommend it! If you pick this book up, you’ll definitely be in for a treat. And if you decide to read it, I recommend going in blind without knowing too much of the synopsis, to get the full experience!

About The Author:

We Were Liars by E. Lockhart [BOOK REVIEW] I definitely recommend it! If you pick this book up, you'll definitely be in for a treat.

E. Lockhart is the author of Again Again, Genuine Fraud, We Were Liars, The Disreputable History of Frankie Landau-Banks, and several other books. Whistle: A New Gotham CIty Hero is a graphic novel.

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Book Review · Books

Chain of Iron (The Last Hours #2) By Cassandra Clare [BOOK REVIEW]

Chain of Iron (The Last Hours #2) By Cassandra Clare [BOOK REVIEW]

Cassandra Claire is one of those authors that no matter what she writes, I’ll be there to read it. Chain of Iron was no different – a very high-paced and adventurous continuation to Chain of Gold. I love this series and can’t wait for Chain of Thorns to come out now.

About The Book:

Chain of Iron (The Last Hours #2) By Cassandra Clare [BOOK REVIEW]


Pages: 637

Format I read it in: Paperback

Publisher: Walker Books

Purchase Links:
Amazon UK | Amazon US

★★★★★

Synopsis:

The Shadowhunters must catch a killer in Edwardian London in this dangerous and romantic sequel to the #1 New York Times bestselling novel Chain of Gold, from New York Times and USA TODAY bestselling author Cassandra Clare. Chain of Iron is a Shadowhunters novel.

Cordelia Carstairs seems to have everything she ever wanted. She’s engaged to marry James Herondale, the boy she has loved since childhood. She has a new life in London with her best friend Lucie Herondale and James’s charming companions, the Merry Thieves. She is about to be reunited with her beloved father. And she bears the sword Cortana, a legendary hero’s blade.

But the truth is far grimmer. James and Cordelia’s marriage is a lie, arranged to save Cordelia’s reputation. James is in love with the mysterious Grace Blackthorn whose brother, Jesse, died years ago in a terrible accident. Cortana burns Cordelia’s hand when she touches it, while her father has grown bitter and angry. And a serial murderer is targeting the Shadowhunters of London, killing under cover of darkness, then vanishing without a trace.

Together with the Merry Thieves, Cordelia, James, and Lucie must follow the trail of the knife-wielding killer through the city’s most dangerous streets. All the while, each is keeping a shocking secret: Lucie, that she plans to raise Jesse from the dead; Cordelia, that she has sworn a dangerous oath of loyalty to a mysterious power; and James, that he is being drawn further each night into the dark web of his grandfather, the arch-demon Belial. And that he himself may be the killer they seek.

My Thoughts:

Chain of Iron is the second book in The Last Hours series. It should be read after you have read the first book, Chain of Gold. This review will probably contain spoilers for the first book, but I will do my best to refrain from revealing anything major in this book.

I love the writing of Cassandra Clare, period. Her chapter openings that make me tab and seek the books she is referencing. The way she adds a foreign language into the books. Here, have some Latin and Italian. Yes, please. I also love how she casually drops so many interesting facts. I don’t think I ever was curious how chess came to be, but I love the myth that was in the book. And also, not to forget, the unforgettable Magnus Bane cameos.

“You all know Magnus Bane, of course?” Anna gestured to the tall figure standing next to her. 

“It’s my understanding,” Cordelia said,”that the question is never whether you know Magnus Bane. The question is always whether Magnus Bane knows you.”

The romance in the book was spot on.

Very slow burn, just as I like it. There were some couples I was expecting to start felling things for each other, and there were also some which pleasantly surprised me. It felt like every couple or potential couple had a unique connection and I felt differently pleased when reading their chapters. The middle of the book hyped me up, and I was so happy when I finished Chapter 22. I have also never been so annoyed at a bracelet before, so that’s a first. 🙂 The ending gave me a big heartbreak, and I can’t wait to read book 3 to see if some hearts will be mended, because I don’t like the way it ended, with some couples being heartbroken…

“My father used to tell me that sometimes you cannot reconcile with someone else. Sometimes you have to find that reconciliation on your own. Someone who broke your heart is often not the person who can mend it.”

I didn’t like the Lucie and Grace combo, and I really missed the relationship Lucie had with Cordelia in the first book. For best friends that are supposed to be parabatai, they didn’t have much time together in this book and I truly missed that. On the subject of Grace, I enjoyed her chapters, but I felt no sympathy for her at all and this didn’t change. She knew exactly what she was doing, and I will never have sympathy for her in this lifetime or the next.

“Love leads to pain, but if you are careful with the way you wield it… you can use it to wound, as well.”

The mystery part was a bit weak.

Without spoiling anything away, I will just say that a certain narrative kept being pushed as to who the killer is, and if you can instantly know this is not the truth and something else is going on. The reveal was very promptly revealed and wasn’t satisfying to me, but I did like some parts, for example the twist with Cordelia.

Overall, I loved this book. I devoured it very fast, and that always says a lot to me. If I don’t like a book, I tend to read it for longer periods of time. Chain of Iron was amazing and satisfied my need for adventure, romance, and Shadowhunter world vibe. I am looking forward to read the next book, and I also warmly recommend this series!

About The Author:

Chain of Iron (The Last Hours #2) By Cassandra Clare [BOOK REVIEW]

Cassandra Clare was born overseas and spent her early years traveling around the world with her family and several trunks of fantasy books. Cassandra worked for several years as an entertainment journalist for the Hollywood Reporter before turning her attention to fiction. She is the author of City of Bones, the first book in the Mortal Instruments trilogy and a New York Times bestseller. Cassandra lives with her fiance and their two cats in Massachusetts.

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Book Review · Books

Hollow City (Miss Peregrine’s Peculiar Children #2) by Ransom Riggs [BOOK REVIEW]

I wanted to read Hollow City as soon as I finished Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children. And now, after finishing Hollow City, there’s only one thing I want to do. Immediately start Library of Souls – the third book in the series.

About The Book:


Pages: 428

Format I read it in: Paperback

Publisher: Quirk Books

Purchase Links:
Amazon UK | Amazon US

★★★★★

Synopsis:

We start where we left off, as soon as the children escape the island, they realise foes are everywhere. Everyone is out there to get them and now they need to save Miss Peregrine as well. Get prepared to join these peculiar children and go through many different loops, discovering other peculiars. And most importantly, saving the woman that has been taking care of them all throughout these whole years.

My Thoughts:

The first thing I loved about this book was the beginning. I loved the eerie theme that the books starts with. Travelling at sea and getting from one island to another is a great start to project the turbulent experience all of these children are about to experience.

“I, too, said a silent goodbye, to a place that had changed me forever – and the place that, more than any graveyard, would forever contain the memory, and the mystery, of my grandfather.”

Their adventure, albeit very dangerous, was also very thrilling to me as a reader. Witnessing the children surviving and discovering new places, new destinations and new loops was a blast. Firstly, we get to visit a loop that was only supposed to be a story they read about in a book. A myth that actually turns to be true. And not only that, but we also meet some of the most peculiar creatures with the most incredible personalities. New quest to add to my personal journal – find yourself a chicken that lays explosive eggs. Because why not.

“But you can’t feel bad every second, I wanted to tell her. Laughing doesn’t make bad things worse any more than crying makes them better. It doesn’t mean you don’t care, or that you’ve forgotten. It just means you’re human.

The children then continue their journey, encountering a few caravans with Gypsies. This part of the book was the most exciting one for me. The fear the children have melts from the hospitaling of these lovely people. And although they’re on a mission and surrounded by danger, for once they felt safe. Meeting Radi, the son of Bekhir and reading about his story was incredible. I could almost feel how he felt and could only imagine how hard making choices must be in his situation.

“In that moment I was deeply grateful to the Gypsies, and for the simple mindedness of the animal part of my brain; that a hot meal and a song and a smile from someone I cared about could be enough to distract me from all that darkness, if only for a little while.”

Hollow City was so good, I even started liking Jacob a bit, especially towards the end of the book. I am not so sure how I felt about Emma in the end, though. She was trying to make decisions that weren’t hers to make, and that really put her in my bad books. I think Library of Souls will probably cover more of this section and answer some questions for me. Also, a little tip – don’t read this series alongside the A Song of Ice and Fire series by George R.R. Martin. There’s a big chance Emma and Melisandre to clash as the same character. Fire and age, well, what do I know. 🙂

“She thought they were weak and cowardly – that they’d taken the easy way out. I couldn’t help wondering, though, if these peculiars simply knew more than we did about what the wights did with their captives. Maybe we would choose death, too, if we knew.”

Ransom Riggs impressed me again, and I am so happy I read Hollow City. Once again, the photographs were amazing. But even more important than that, is how Ransom took these photographs, and made them into a story. All whilst making them in an order that compliments the reading perfectly. He is truly a master of his craft.

Please pick it up! To escape reality and enter a peculiar world! To meet children who are so incredibly unique. And to witness a new world, full of time-manipulation, adventure and grave danger. Pick Hollow City – to experience childhood again, for it is the most confusing, interesting and amusing part of all our lives. And also, the most peculiar.

“There was romance in the unknown, but once a place had been discovered and cataloged and mapped, it was diminished, just another dusty fact in a book, sapped of mystery. So maybe it was better to leave a few sports on the map blank. To let the world keep a little of its magic, rather than forcing it to divulge every last secret.”

About The Author:

Hi, I’m Ransom, and I like to tell stories. Sometimes I tell them with words, sometimes with pictures, often with both. I grew up on a farm on the Eastern shore of Maryland and also in a little house by the beach in Englewood, Florida where I got very tan and swam every day until I became half fish. I started writing stories when I was young, on an old typewriter that jammed and longhand on legal pads.

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Book Review · Books

Chain of Gold by Cassandra Clare [BOOK REVIEW]

Chain of Gold by Cassandra Clare [BOOK REVIEW]

★★★★

I was reading Chain of Gold by Cassandra Clare as part of the Tandem readalong on Instagram. I love Cassandra Clare’s Shadowhunter series, and it was such a unique experience to read Chain of Gold while chatting to people about it at the same time. Needless to say, I loved the book, and can’t wait for the second book, Chain of Iron, to come out. Huge thanks also to the team at Walker Books, for the copy of the book!

Synopsis:

Chain of Gold is the first book of the Last Hours series, and it’s set in Edwardian London. We meet shadowhunter Cordelia Carstairs, a warrior trained to battle demons. When her father is awaiting trial for a crime he may have committed, she and her brother travel to London in hope to prevent the family’s shame. Cordelia’s mother wants her to marry into a suitable house, but Cordelia is more determined to be a hero than a bride.

While in London, Cordelia meets her childhood friends, James and Lucie Herondale, and their world of ballrooms and picnics. Cordelia and Lucie are promised to be parabatais when they get older. And Cordelia also has to keep her love for James a secret, who is promised to marry someone else.

But a shocking series of attacks happen in London, and these monsters are nothing like the ones Shadowhunters have fought before. These demons can walk in daylight, damage Shadowhunters with poison and are impossible to kill. With London under quarantine, Cordelia and her friends discover that their own connection to a dark legacy has gifted them with incredible powers—and forced a brutal choice that will reveal the true cruel price of being a hero.

My Thoughts:

I loved Chain of Gold so much! It was everything I expected it to be and more! The story line is a very exciting one and as soon as I got familiar with all the characters and plot, I couldn’t put it down. I have read The Mortal Instruments and The Dark Artifices series prior to reading this book, and the Shadowhunter world felt very familiar to me. I knew some of the names, but it didn’t make much of a difference.

If you have read the Infernal Devices series, many characters will be known to you. But at the same time, if this is your first Cassandra Clare book, you’ll still be able to enjoy it. The first few chapters explain the Shadowhunter world quite well, as well as the Downworlders. In fact, if this is the first book you pick up, it will probably make you want to read the other books as well.

The writing is a masterpiece.

Cassie Clare, as usual, doesn’t disappoint. As soon as I start reading any of her books, I am immediately transported into this fictional world. I also loved the group of friends. It reminded me of the group of friends in the Mortal Instruments series, because of how close they are, and how they are not afraid to sacrifice each other to save one another. They are so unique and different, but that makes them all click nicely together.

“It matters not how a man dies, but how he lives.”

Cordelia was one of my favorite characters. Her bravery and her strong will. I mean, not everyone can wield Cortana, and she managed to do that!

“Ah, the famous Cortana. A sword that bears no runes, yet can kill demons, they say.”

I also loved Lucie’s creative mind and ability to find good in everyone. Also, her amazing ability (not saying anything else). James and his ability to think fast, to lead the group and to be the first one to go into a battle. Anna’s ability to discard the rules and live life as she wants. Matthew and Thomas, as well as Alastair and Christopher, all with their own troubles, but always there for their friends, ready for anything. Jesse. Oh God, Jesse. That boy made me love him so much, especially during the last few chapters. And not to forget, the amazing Jem, also known as Brother Zachariah. He was a true gem in this book, and his advice was priceless to James many, many times.

“We do not get to choose when in our lives we feel pain.” said Matthew, “It comes when it comes, and we try to remember, even though we cannot imagine a day when it will release its hold on us, that all pain fades. All misery passes. Humanity is drawn to light, not darkness.”

It’s always hard to write reviews without spoiling anything.

With Cassandra Clare’s books, it’s exceptionally hard! But I will say this – it’s another YA fantasy into the Shadowhunter universe, and it’s full with magic and intrigue. You’ll start caring about these people, and their lives will be in danger and each chapter will leave you wanting more. There are demons, ghosts, magic, warlocks, faes and vampires. And always shadowhunters, saving the day. I’ll definitely be reading the next book in the series, and I hope you’ll join me too!

Purchase Links:
 Amazon UK | Amazon US

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