The Wolf and the Woodsman Review

In her forest-veiled pagan village, Évike is the only woman without power, making her an outcast clearly abandoned by the gods. The villagers blame her corrupted bloodline—her father was a Yehuli man, one of the much-loathed servants of the fanatical king. When soldiers arrive from the Holy Order of Woodsmen to claim a pagan girl for the king’s blood sacrifice, Évike is betrayed by her fellow villagers and surrendered. But when monsters attack the Woodsmen and their captive en route, slaughtering everyone but Évike and the cold, one-eyed captain, they have no choice but to rely on each other. Except he’s no ordinary Woodsman—he’s the disgraced prince, Gáspár Bárány, whose father needs pagan magic to consolidate his power. Gáspár fears that his cruelly zealous brother plans to seize the throne and instigate a violent reign that would damn the pagans and the Yehuli alike. As their mission takes them from the bitter northern tundra to the smog-choked capital, their mutual loathing slowly turns to affection, bound by a shared history of alienation and oppression. However, trust can easily turn to betrayal, and as Évike reconnects with her estranged father and discovers her own hidden magic, she and Gáspár need to decide whose side they’re on, and what they’re willing to give up for a nation that never cared for them at all.

July 2022 Wrap Up

Another milestone hit! This month I offically reached my Goodreads Reading Goal but I also have a new number for the amount of books I can read in one month. 13!!!

  • I read 13 books this month
  • Genre: 7 fantasy, 3 mystery, 1 romance, 1 non-fiction, 1 classic and 1 sport.
  • Gender of authors: 8 women and 4 men
  • Race of authors: 7 white authors, 4 asian authors and 1 latina author
  • Age range: 7 adult, 3 YA and 3 middle grade
  • Format: 8 paperback, 3 ebook, 1 hardback and 1 audiobook

The Maidens by Alex Michaelides (2 stars)

Starting, as always, with my lowest rated book first. This book was a solid read for about 80% of the book but the ending was so far-fetched and disappointing that it ended up ruining the rest of the book for me.

Alex Neptune, Dragon Thief by David Owen (2.5 stars)

This was a funny, action-packed story about a boy trying to save a mysterious dragon from an abandoned aquarium. Great mix of mythology as well as a strong save our oceans message. My favourite character was Alex’s sister.

Fairy Tail Vol. 1 by Hiro Mashima (2.5 stars)

I had watched about 50 episodes of the anime and I remember loving it. Sure, they dragged the fights out but the characters were good, the show was fun, why don’t I try the manga? My thoughts with manga are if they don’t grab me in the first volume I will not be continuing the series. This was the case for this volume. It did nothing to garner my attention. It was fine.

The Darkening by Sunya Mara (3 stars)

This was a middle of the road kind of book for me. There were some things that I loved and some things that I didn’t love. I loved the setting, mythology and magic system but I didn’t love the romance element and I felt that the back story and explanation behind the storm that surrounds her city needed alot more development.

Nightlights by Lorena Alvarez Gomez (3.5 stars)

Such an exciting and curious story. I loved the artwork and the main character was amazing. I did wish that the plot of the story was a bit clearer and had a bit more development.

Hicotea by Lorena Alvarez Gomez (4 stars)

This book though, which is the second in the series after Nightlights, was really good. Same incredible artwork but with a more established plot and messaging. Stay curious, keep asking questions.

Haikyu!! Vol. 3 by Haruichi Furudate (4 stars)

Another great instalment. What I love about this series is its deep dive into its characters. I was worried when I started this series that I would just be watching 2D volleyball and that I would get bored. This series is so much more than just the game. I love learning and watching these characters grow and support eachother. It is its strongest element.

The Yellow Wallpaper by Charlotte Perkins Gilman (4 stars)

Now, for those who don’t know, I am not much of a classics reader. I stick to crime classics and that’s about it. Well, when I heard there was a really short story that is super popular and a classic I thought I would give it a go. My biggest struggle with classics is the writing style. I find quite a lot them to be too inaccessible and hard to understand, my own personal experience, but that was not the issue with this story. I felt like I was listening to a friend. The story was super good with an amazing ending. More of this please!

Hook, Line and Sinker by Tessa Bailey (4.5 stars)

Tessa Bailey hit the mark once again! I read this in one day! I loved Fox and Hannah’s story, I didn’t think it would match up to Brendan and Piper’s but I think the additional information with the fact they have been friends for some time made it work just so well. I also related to Hannah a lot! I will be reading all of her books from now on!

Her Majesty’s Royal Coven by Juno Dawson (4.5 stars)

Everyone needs to stop what they are doing and read this book. An urban fantasy story where 4 witches come together after years seperated when the figure who will bring destruction of the world is located. Super funny, great sense of female empowerment with solid discussions of race, gender and sexuality. Sometimes the writing was a bit cringey but this plot was packed with intense action scenes, great magic and an ending that had me shocked to my core!

Lord Peter Wimsey: BBC Drama Collection Vol. 1 (5 stars)

My first ever foray into audio dramatisations of literary work. Originally adapted for the radio, these performances have now been compiled into 3 volume audiobooks. I loved everything about this! I have always wanted to read the Lord Peter Wimsey series. The story got better with each instalment. My favourite from this collection had to be Unnatural Death the third and final in this volume. The performances were just incredible.

The Three Dahlias by Katy Watson (5 stars)

This book felt like an ode to the golden age of crime fiction. Set in a manor of a famous Agatha Christie-esque author, a fan convention is held to celebrate the author, her work and the announcement of a new movie adaptation. But a murder occurs and it’s up to the three actresses who all played the author’s literary detective over the preceding years to solve the case. This book met my expectations with a great plot, beautiful setting, and amazing characters. My favourite thing about this entire story was the love and friendship that formed between the Three Dahlias.

The Dragon Republic by R.F. Kuang (5 stars)

Going into this I was nervous as The Poppy War was one of my fave books last year and I was worried this book would not match up. I did not need to worry at all. A very different story to The Poppy War, I felt it was less dense than the first one. I enjoy watching Rin change and grow throughout the story, she is by far one of the most interesting characters I have ever read. I cannot wait to be emotionally devastated by book 3.

The Maidens Review

Edward Fosca is a murderer. Of this Mariana is certain. But Fosca is untouchable. A handsome and charismatic Greek Tragedy professor at Cambridge University, Fosca is adored by staff and students alike—particularly by the members of a secret society of female students known as The Maidens. Mariana Andros is a brilliant but troubled group therapist who becomes fixated on The Maidens when one member, a friend of Mariana’s niece Zoe, is found murdered in Cambridge. Mariana, who was once herself a student at the university, quickly suspects that behind the idyllic beauty of the spires and turrets, and beneath the ancient traditions, lies something sinister. And she becomes convinced that, despite his alibi, Edward Fosca is guilty of the murder. But why would the professor target one of his students? And why does he keep returning to the rites of Persephone, the maiden, and her journey to the underworld? When another body is found, Mariana’s obsession with proving Fosca’s guilt spirals out of control, threatening to destroy her credibility as well as her closest relationships. But Mariana is determined to stop this killer, even if it costs her everything—including her own life. 

The Three Dahlias Review

In attendance: the VIP fans, staying at Aldermere; the fan club president turned convention organizer; the team behind the newest movie adaptation of Davenport’s books; the Davenport family themselves – and the three actresses famous for portraying Lettice’s 1930s detective, Dahlia Lively. National treasure Rosalind King, from the original movies. TV Dahlia for thirteen seasons, Caro Hooper. And ex-child star Posy Starling, fresh out of the fame wilderness (and rehab) to take on the Dahlia mantle for the new movie. Each actress has her own interpretation of the character – but this English summer weekend they will have to put aside their differences, as the crimes at Aldermere turns anything but cosy.

The Dragon Republic Review


In the aftermath of the Third Poppy War, shaman and warrior Rin is on the run: haunted by the atrocity she committed to end the war, addicted to opium, and hiding from the murderous commands of her vengeful god, the fiery Phoenix. Her only reason for living is to get revenge on the traitorous Empress who sold out Nikan to their enemies. With no other options, Rin joins forces with the powerful Dragon Warlord, who has a plan to conquer Nikan, unseat the Empress, and create a new Republic. Rin throws herself into his war. After all, making war is all she knows how to do. But the Empress is a more powerful foe than she appears, and the Dragon Warlord’s motivations are not as democratic as they seem. The more Rin learns, the more she fears her love for Nikan will drive her away from every ally and lead her to rely more and more on the Phoenix’s deadly power. Because there is nothing she won’t sacrifice for her country and her vengeance.

Manga Update 2022!

So, since I started my job as a bookseller I have been increasingly reading more and more manga. This is due to both social media and my colleagues who are huge fans of the medium. I decided to create an annual post where I talk about all the manga I have read and plan to read. This might be a long post so let’s jump right in.