Caraval (Caraval #1) – Stephanie Garber

Title: Caraval 51judmgnral-_sx323_bo1204203200_
Author: Stephanie Garber
Genre: Fantasy
Pages: 407
Category: 36. Read a debut book from this year
Format: Paper

This is the first in a series, something I was not aware of when I chose the book (or when I read it). Honetsly, when I was looking at the start of the year for debut books there wasn’t a lot of choice and I was left with Caraval or the Keeper of Lost Things. Since my library had Caraval I ended up choosing that.

I was pleasantly surprised by this book though. I went in not expecting much but it was one of the best things I read all year.

I love the idea of a magical event that is half party, half mystery with a bit of performance for good measure. This one is a must for anyone who loves a bit of magic in their stories.

Rating: 4.5/5stars

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The Magicians – Lev Grossman

Title: The Magicians516f8erf1ul-_sx324_bo1204203200_
Author: Lev Grossman
Genre: Fantasy
Pages: 402
Category: 9. Read a book in the fantasy genre
Format: Paper

Date Started: September 16th 2017
Date Finished: September 18th 2017

This is yet another first book in a trilogy, but in this case I really don’t see myself picking up the rest of the books. It was okay but I don’t think it was really anything special. Despite that, it has been made into a tv series apparently.

I was never a huge fan of fantasy growing up. With the exception of Harry Potter I never found a fantasy series I liked. As an adult I’ve been a little more adventurous. But in the case of this book I’s really one I could’ve missed. Which isn’t to say that it didn’t have great message  because it does. In fact in some ways it’s a much more realistic experience of magic in that it really is hard work.

Quentin is on the verge of adulthood, one of the smartest kids in the smartest classes at school. He’s selected to take a test for the most prestigious magic college in America. Brakebills. He gets accepted and thus begins his schooling experience. All of which is contained in this single book as well as his post schooling life. Honestly this is part of my problem with the book, it just feels rushed.

In addition to feeling rushed it feels like Quentin’s personality changes halfway through the book. This is one of the smartest kids in highschool only to start at Brakebills and forget everything he had learned in school and to suddenly seem like he was incredibly average.

I found it kind of hard to connect with the characters to be honest and that’s a real pity because characters are really what makes a great book for me .

Rating: 2.5/5 stars

Fated – Benedict Jacka

Title: Fated (Alex Verus #1)fatedukcover300
Author: Benedict Jacka
Genre: Paranormal
Pages: 295
Category: 38. Read a book in the paranormal genre
Format: Paper

Date Started: June 4th 2017
Date Finished: June 8th 2017

The first in a series this book definitely makes me want to read the rest of the books. It’s such an easy read and kept me guessing right until the end.

I don’t want to give too much away from this first book but if you like urban fantasy then definitely give these a shot. Alex Verus is the main character in this series, he’s kind of shunned the magic world and keeps mostly to himself running a small magic shop reminiscent of the Magic Box from Buffy the Vampire Slayer, he stocks both legitimate magic items as well as junk items which attract the general public. But then he is drawn back into the magic world as one of the few who has the ability to look into the future.

As someone who loves books that feature any kind of time travel or precognition this was an absolute treat for me. It’s the type of book you can devour very quickly. In fact had I not been so busy it’s likely I would’ve gotten through this a lot quicker than I did. As of yet I haven’t had the chance to read any more from the series but I’ve added them to the list.

Rating: 3.5/5 stars