Posted in Book Review Tuesday, Books

Book Review Tuesday (4/14/20)–Even the Darkest Stars

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Happy Tuesday, bibliophiles!

Here we have the next victim of my neverending trawling of the annals of available (quality) YA on Libby…

I was semi-hesitant to start reading this one–I was somewhat compelled, but for a while, not enough to have a go at it. Out of desperation, I checked it out on the Kindle library, and to my surprise, Even the Darkest Stars was far more multilayered and intriguing than I thought!

Enjoy this week’s review!

Even the Darkest Stars : Heather Fawcett : 9780062463395

Even the Darkest Stars (Even the Darkest Stars, #1)

For as long as she can remember, Kamzin has longed to be among the Royal Explorers of the Empire, traveling to faraway lands and discovering places and things beyond the human imagination. She knows her fantasy may be nothing more than a pipe dream, but she can’t help holding onto it.

To her surprise, River Shara, one of the Empire’s most famed explorers, and his crew arrive in her mountain village. What’s more, they demand that she be part of their mission to uncover an enchanted artifact hidden at the peak of Raksha, the tallest and most deadly mountain for miles. Kamzin gladly accepts his offer, but soon finds that River–along with the motives of his expedition–are far from what they seem…

 

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Even the Darkest Stars stands out in the midst of YA fantasy, utilizing the concept of mountaineering–inspired by the early Everest expeditions–to make for a twisty, unique adventure!

My favorite part had to be all of the mythological lore surrounding Raksha, and all of the magical creatures in and around it. Witches? Ghosts? Demonic familiars? Mildly terrifying human-bird hybrid…things? (And a certain adorable fox?) You want it, Even the Darkest Stars has it all.

The lush writing made for a beautifully atmospheric novel, one that made you feel the chill of the night wind, the palpable terror of the characters, and the awe of seeing and scaling a formidable mountain. I’m glad to say that the cover most definitely does the novel justice–the imagery is beautiful in both respects! (And I’m a sucker for anything teal, so there’s that.)

For the most part, I liked the characters. Kamzin was fairly likable, as was Tem (though the latter didn’t have as big a role in the novel). Although it was very predictable that something was up with River from the beginning, I still liked seeing his character evolve (devolve?) throughout the course of the journey. And then…ehhh, we got another love triangle…

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The more well-executed parts of the novel made it slightly more bearable, but did we really have to do that again? Did we? I mean, as much as I liked Tem, I don’t think there was even any need for him in the story, in the first place. His actions with Kamzin did further the story a bit, they didn’t serve for much character development. Sigh…

And the ENDING. Even the Darkest Stars was absolutely PACKED with exciting twists at the end, and now I’m so excited to read the sequel! And no spoilers, but I did get a bit choked up…

Overall, a lushly written YA fantasy, though slightly dampened by a love triangle, that set itself apart in the vast subgenre. 3.75 stars for me, rounded up to 4!

Even the Darkest Stars is the first in a duology, ending with All the Wandering Light. Aaaaaaand of course, it’s not available on the Kindle library…[incoherent screaming]

 

Today’s song:

The melody of this one just popped into my head at random today…oh, and happy birthday, Win Butler! 🙂

 

That’s it for this week’s Book Review Tuesday! Have a wonderful day, and take care of yourselves!

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Posted in Music

My Top 5 Favorite Songs of 2017!!!

Hey there everyone!

 

We’re just a bit more than halfway through 2017, but already, we’ve gotten a lot of good music that’s come out! I just wanted to share my 5 2017 favorites so far. Enjoy!

 

1. “Half a Million”-The Shins

(This music video is crazy awesome. And I mean CRAZY awesome.)

I downloaded Heartworms (the new Shins album) the day it came out, and didn’t get to listening to this one for a while. Thus, I didn’t really care for it for a few months. Then, I actually got to listening to it, and man, I was SO happy! Super fun and upbeat, and with the classic, weird lyrics to match!

 

 

 

2. “New York”-St. Vincent

(Now THIS music video is just weird…but in the best way possible.😂)

I also got this the day it came out, being the first single from St. Vincent’s upcoming album (which I’ve been waiting something like 3 years for). Though it’s nowhere near as good as some of the content off of her last album, St. Vincent, it’s still a wonderful song. Squee!

 

 

3. “Put Your Money On Me”-Arcade Fire

(This one’s just a lyric video, but prepare to be blown away by the song!)

I discovered this one when my mom, brother and I were in the car listening to Everything Now (the new Arcade Fire album) on CD in the car. I was hooked the second it came on, with the opening melody that reminded me of spiders crawling up a wall, and beautiful lyrics. It reminded me a little of David Bowie, like something he might have produced on one of his later albums. Be-yoo-tee-ful!

 

4. “War Is Coming (If You Want It)”-Car Seat Headrest

https://carseatheadrest.bandcamp.com/track/war-is-coming-if-you-want-it

(This one’s just a Bandcamp link, but you can still listen to the song, of course.)

SQUEEEEEEEEEEECARSEATHEADRESTSQUEEEEEEEEEEEEEEWILLTOLEDOISINCREDIBLYHOTOMGOMGOMGOMGOMGOMGOMGOMGOMGSQUEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE

Alrighty, I suppose there’s not much to say other than that….*ahem* Great song.

 

5. “Oh! You Pretty Things”-Lisa Hannigan

(This one’s just the album cover with the song in the background. Still, beautiful.)

As you may have noticed, this is, in fact, a David Bowie cover. One of my personal favorites! Lisa Hannigan did an AMAZING job covering it, making it simultaneously haunting and soothing. I’m currently listening to it on repeat, as that’s what I normally do when I download new songs. Also, according to my parents, it was in a show called Legion, which I haven’t seen, but I know it has something to do with the X-Men, which makes it even more perfect and fitting!

”Let me make it plain, gotta make way for the Homo superior…”

 

 

I hope you enjoyed this little insight into my musical taste, and enjoyed the songs as well! See you later! 😉