Mini ARCs Review!

Hello people and happy first day of October! September was a good month, and I am a little bit sad to see it ending but… October is here and the Autumn is finally here, so yay!
And to start the month in the best possible way, I am here with two short reviews, and I hope that this one would be the first of a long series for this month!

I received this first book from the author in exchange for an honest review. So a big thank you to the author! 

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Title: Blackwood Marauders
Author: K.S. Villoso
Publication Date: April 5th, 2018
Page Count: 397

Glory is for the gods. The rest make do. 
Growing up in a quiet farm, Luc “Lucky” son of Jak didn’t think much of the world until he fails the military entrance exam and finds himself responsible for a group of vicious, bloodthirsty mercenaries. Raised to be honest, upright, and true, his own ideals clash with the mercenaries’ shaky morals. His problems take a turn for the worst when he falls into a trap set by Roena Blackwood. 
The eldest of Duke Iorwin’s daughters, Roena is adamant that life can only go her way. A high priest’s prophecy causes her to rethink her options and take the path less travelled: that of a travelling mercenary. 
But killing monsters and saving villages can only get interesting for so long. Luc and Roena find themselves in a twisted plot concocted by none other than the merchant Ylir yn Garr. Together, they must learn to set aside their differences and work together to prevent disaster, even if it means confronting what they ran away from in the first place.

I had really great expectations from this book, and that’s because of the title. I know I am a shallow person, I know, but I may have a penchant for the word marauders. I don’t know why but every time I saw it my fantasy takes flight and my expectations keep growing. So yeah, probably you have guessed it, but they were disappointed. But let me be clear here. The book is good and I enjoyed the reading, it’s just that I was expecting more, so much more, and in the end, I didn’t get it.

To make a long story short, the book is about Luc, a foundling whose real name is Lucky, Roena, the daughter of a duke, and the group of mercenaries that the two youngs decided to join. We have adventures, actions, intrigues, deaths, wrongdoing and good deeds all nicely wrapped up in the story, and that’s all ok. To be honest I wasn’t so invested in the story per se. It’s not bad, and it happens a lot in it, so it’s not boring, but it’s not the most intriguing or captivating.
But the interesting thing about this book, the thing that I really liked, is that in this book you get a new take on the old farm boy cliché. Our Lucky is a farm boy, yes, but the author finds new ways to use this kind of character, she manages to keep him original and he makes him going beyond the clichè, and I really liked this thing. And Luc, obviously!

I would read something else from the author, that’s for sure. I liked her new take on one of the most classic trope, so I am curious to see what else she can do!

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I received this book from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. Thank you to NetGalley and to the editor. 

cjamcqfTitle: And Then There Were Crows
Author: Alcy Leyva
Publication Date:  July 3rd, 2018
Page count: 280

New York City has always been a big fat sack of stress for Amanda Grey. From turning herself into knots to evade rubbing ass cheeks with strangers on the train, to round-housing public bathroom door handles to stave off plague contaminations, Grey has always found the simple technique of avoidance best in dealing with NYC. Luckily, the one-bedroom apartment in Queens she shares with her parents has always served as a refuge from a world that’s too loud and too bright for Amanda Grey.
Of course, that’s all about to change.
When she inadvertently rents a room to a demon, Grey goes from a woman concentrated on her own personal demons to the woman responsible for recapturing the six Shades from Hell she’s unleashed upon the city. She manages to survive by accepting the help of Barnem, an antisocial seraphim who just
happens to reside in an upstairs apartment and the demon she now shares her apartment with—and who oddly eager to help her vanquish the Shades, though she can’t be sure if he’s motivated by roommate loyalty or a secret plot to enslave humankind. Probably the latter.
Together the unlikely trio will have to face off with the (actual) devils of New York politics, break the curse of infomercial jingles, and figure out exactly how Grey has become the leader of a cult, all as Grey begins to realize that maybe the end of the world is exactly what her life needed. Now she just needs to figure out how to survive it.

First thing first, I have some peculiar ideas about urban fantasy, and I’ll try to be really short about them: I mainly divide them in two big categories, the one I like more, that basically are the ones with vampires/weres/angels/demons and a world that, usually even if not ever, is not our world, even if it’s really similar (authors like Ilona Andrews, Patricia Briggs etcetera) and the one I like less, that are the ones in which the line between urban fantasy and magical realism is really thin. (author like Neil Gaiman).
I know it’s not the best explanation ever, but I hope it’s understandable, more or less. And it’s not that I like all the books of the first kind and dislike all the books of the second one, it’s just that I prefer the first ones and I am deeply aware of it.

But I am not a logical person, so I requested this title on NetGalley even knowing that this one was of the second kind. The main reason is a shallow one, I have to confess. I fell in love with the title. That’s it. But the plot was intriguing so I decided to give this one a try. And let me tell you, that it went well!
I enjoyed the reading, I enjoyed it a lot, even if the setting wasn’t of my liking, and the story wasn’t, at the end of the day, so intriguing. But I fell in love with the MC and the “WTF is this-ness” of the entire book, that I kept on reading and enjoying it because it was… well, it was… I don’t know which word use here. It’s original, it’s peculiar, it’s strange, in some part is genius, and for most of the time, it’s absurd. But not in a bad way. Absolutely not.

So, if you are in for a challenge, and you want to read about not your everyday heroine, well, that’s the right book for you!
I know that this review is not so informative, but I was hoping to make you curious and I was hoping to keep you wondering! I know, I am a bad person!

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So… tell me, have you read them? Or have you read something else from these authors? Let me know!

Happy reading!
S.

5 thoughts on “Mini ARCs Review!

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