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Welcome!

Welcome to my blog! My name’s Kim! This blog is always under construction, so things will be changing constantly. Feel free to look around!

If you’re interested in my bookish posts, you can find the books I’m currently reading, books I’m reviewing, as well as links to my other book posts and pages, check out my Reading Nook!

I have a bookish podcast! You can find it on Anchor! You can also find all of my links through my Linktree.

If you’re interested in my writing, you can find my current projects and their pages and tags, as well as tags to my writing posts, check out my other site, MoonDragon Writes!

If you have any questions or thoughts, feel free to comment! (But I ask you to keep it kind. This is a positive space; I don’t tolerate hate. Any hateful or inappropriate comments will be deleted.)

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Book Review: Blood & Honey by Shelby Mahurin

Summary:

After narrowly escaping death at the hands of the Dames Blanches, Lou, Reid, Coco, and Ansel are on the run from coven, kingdom, and church—fugitives with nowhere to hide.

To elude the scores of witches and throngs of chasseurs at their heels, Lou and Reid need allies. Strong ones. But protection comes at a price, and the group is forced to embark on separate quests to build their forces. As Lou and Reid try to close the widening rift between them, the dastardly Morgane baits them in a lethal game of cat and mouse that threatens to destroy something worth more than any coven.

(Goodreads) (Storygraph)

My Rating: 3/5

I feel really bad about this rating, especially because this book was one of my most anticipated of 2020. I was just…disappointed. I’d almost chalk it up to hyping it up too much, but I know that there are other people who had the same feelings that I did.

Okay. Let’s start out with the good: the overall plot was really great. I love the idea of gathering allies against the major antagonist and preparing for war, and This also lead to a lot of really great worldbuilding that we didn’t get as much of in the first book. As the main characters move through the book to all of these different factions, we get to see those specific societies and how they work. I thought it was awesome and a really great way to introduce readers to these aspects of the war.

I also really liked the further exploration of the consequences of Lou’s magic, and the look it gives us into why Morgane became the way she is. It builds off of the previously established “fair-trade” aspect of the magic and shows how it can affect the witch’s personality when they go too far. They can be incredibly powerful, but it comes at the price of corruption.

Unfortunately, my biggest disappointment was in one of the biggest things I read this book for– the romance. If you know me, you know I love enemies/rivals to lovers, because a lot of times character development is inherent in the course of the relationship. I felt like there was a lot of regression in both Lou and Reid’s relationship. There was a lot of refusal to communicate with each other, which is one of my biggest pet peeves in romances, and contributed greatly to this sense of regression. Also, the fact that they physically fought each other during an argument in one scene of the book really rubbed me wrong. While I get the sense that this was all supposed to contribute towards healing on both their relationships and in their characters by the end of the book, it made it seem really rushed and uncomfortable.

I do intend to read the next book and finish out the series, but I’m going into this next one with a lot more caution.

Have you read this book? Let me know what you thought in the comments! I’d love to hear from you!

Book Review: Imaginary Friend by Stephen Chobosky

Summary:

Christopher is seven years old.
Christopher is the new kid in town.
Christopher has an imaginary friend.

We can swallow our fear or let our fear swallow us.

Single mother Kate Reese is on the run. Determined to improve life for her and her son, Christopher, she flees an abusive relationship in the middle of the night with her child. Together, they find themselves drawn to the tight-knit community of Mill Grove, Pennsylvania. It’s as far off the beaten track as they can get. Just one highway in, one highway out.

At first, it seems like the perfect place to finally settle down. Then Christopher vanishes. For six long days, no one can find him. Until Christopher emerges from the woods at the edge of town, unharmed but not unchanged. He returns with a voice in his head only he can hear, with a mission only he can complete: Build a treehouse in the woods by Christmas, or his mother and everyone in the town will never be the same again.

(Goodreads) (StoryGraph)

My Rating: 4/5

Imaginary Friend was an interesting concept. There were a few points while I was reading that made me wonder where the story would go, because it seemed like things were wrapping up, but I never lost interest. I read it looking for creepy vibes, and that was what I got. It wasn’t scary enough to keep me up at night, which is just about my speed for horror and/or thrillers.

My biggest issue (and I’ve heard others mention this, too) was that it got strangely religious at the end. It was really weird in the sense that I wasn’t sure if it was meant to be a critique on religious beliefs, or if it was meant to further them. (Honestly, I could see it going either way.) It was just really weird and I think it took away from the story more than it added to it.

Have you read this book? Let me know what you thought in the comments! I’d love to hear from you!

Book Review: Red Rising by Pierce Brown

Summary:

Darrow is a Red, a member of the lowest caste in the color-coded society of the future. Like his fellow Reds, he works all day, believing that he and his people are making the surface of Mars livable for future generations.

Yet he spends his life willingly, knowing that his blood and sweat will one day result in a better world for his children.

But Darrow and his kind have been betrayed. Soon he discovers that humanity already reached the surface generations ago. Vast cities and sprawling parks spread across the planet. Darrow—and Reds like him—are nothing more than slaves to a decadent ruling class.

Inspired by a longing for justice, and driven by the memory of lost love, Darrow sacrifices everything to infiltrate the legendary Institute, a proving ground for the dominant Gold caste, where the next generation of humanity’s overlords struggle for power. He will be forced to compete for his life and the very future of civilization against the best and most brutal of Society’s ruling class. There, he will stop at nothing to bring down his enemies… even if it means he has to become one of them to do so.

(Goodreads) (StoryGraph)

My Rating: 4/5

For the most part, I really enjoyed this. It gave me the same vibes I got when I read The Hunger Games for the first time. Once I got into it, it was easy to stay engaged and I actually ended up listening to about 60% of the audiobook in one night because I wanted to see how it ended. I also really loved how the worldbuilding in this book was centered around Roman Mythology, which, if you know me, is a topic I love. I really enjoyed seeing how these aspects were incorporated into the society. I also really enjoyed how Red Rising discussed leadership and loyalty. How loyalty is won through equality in leadership, rather than tyranny.

However, I did have to put this book on hold, and the reason why persisted throughout the book. I really don’t like stories that use the trauma or death of a love interest as motivation for the protagonist. Being that this happened very early in the book, was the driving force behind the majority of the plot, and continued throughout the rest of the book, I had a really hard time getting into it.

Have you read this book? Let me know what you thought in the comments! I’d love to hear from you!

Angels and Demons

More from my writing blog!

MoonDragon Writes

Based on this prompt from writing.prompt.daily on Instagram!


CW: Mentions of kidnapping, abuse, torture, and murder. Nothing explicit, but please proceed with caution.


You wanted help. I bet you hadn’t expected this.

You thought summoning an angel instead of a demon would protect you. Save your soul. I guess, in a way, you were right. You won’t be punished in your afterlife.

No, not punished. Not really.

It saved your life today. You were right, after all. Yes, that neighbor of yours that you’ve always gotten “off vibes” from, to use your phrasing, who wouldn’t take no for an answer after asking you on a date, would have insisted on taking you home tonight.

Taken you home, chained your unconscious body up in the basement, and had fun with you until it became too much and killed you. Or, until you got boring and it was time to find a…

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Book Review: The War of the Worlds by H.G. Wells

Summary:

When an army of invading Martians lands in England, panic and terror seize the population. As the aliens traverse the country in huge three-legged machines, incinerating all in their path with a heat ray and spreading noxious toxic gases, the people of the Earth must come to terms with the prospect of the end of human civilization and the beginning of Martian rule.

(Goodreads) (StoryGraph)

My Rating: 3/5

This will be a fairly short review because I really don’t have much to say. I found this book pretty middle of the road, and the resolution was pretty anticlimactic. There was a great set up for and tension that could have lead to a major battle in some way, and (*SPOILER ALERT*) that didn’t happen. It was resolved in a way that was unexpected, which kept it from being a unsatisfying read, but I think there could have been more.

Have you read this book? Let me know what you thought in the comments! I’d love to hear from you!

Sunflower Part 1

MoonDragon Writes

The first time they meet, it’s by chance. On the battlefield.

Lilly has lost her weapon, her bow and an entire quiver of arrows. She’s on her knees in the mud, looking up at the girl who would be her killer.

She tries to keep her expression defiant, pressing a hand to her shoulder as if that would stop the blood. The princess of the sun stands over her, her twin swords, curved and wicked, drawn and already red with blood.

She looks so out of place on the battlefield, long golden dress, fine jewelry, elegant shoes, not a scar or cut on her porcelain skin or a single dark brown hair out of place—but her people are nearly impervious, after all. Her general’s cloak and crystal-and-gold crown make it painfully obvious what lurks behind those fine features and grey eyes.

Flare, the Sun’s princess, second in line for the…

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Series Review: The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood

(Note: These summaries are pretty vague because if I were to go too much more in detail, I would be afraid of spoiling the major events of the books)

The Handmaid’s Tale

My rating: 4/5 Stars

Content Warnings: Sexual content, Misogyny, Abuse, Suicide, Depression, Pregnancy

Summary:

In Margaret Atwood’s dystopian future, environmental disasters and declining birthrates have led to a Second American Civil War. The result is the rise of the Republic of Gilead, a totalitarian regime that enforces rigid social roles and enslaves the few remaining fertile women. Offred is one of these, a Handmaid bound to produce children for one of Gilead’s commanders. Deprived of her husband, her child, her freedom, and even her own name, Offred clings to her memories and her will to survive. At once a scathing satire, an ominous warning, and a tour de force of narrative suspense, The Handmaid’s Tale is a modern classic.

(Goodreads) (StoryGraph)

I really enjoyed a lot of the commentary in this book. It’s one of those books that seems really exaggerated until you really think about it. Some may try to argue that this story is unrealistic, when in reality women are losing more and more of their rights to choose what happens to their own bodies every day. It’s a warning in the same way of The Hunger Games of what happens when the government takes too much power.

I really enjoyed the dual timelines between Offred’s present and her past, and how it allows readers to get more information without a large infodump. This is actually one of my favorite formatting for giving backstory in books.

That being said, I think I would have had an easier time getting into the books in the beginning had we been given a little more information in the beginning. I found it really difficult to find interest in the book when I had no idea what was going on or why things were happening. I would have liked to have a little more background.

The other reason I think I had trouble with the beginning of this book was because the writing style seemed very impersonal, which made it really difficult to connect to the characters. That might have been the intended effect, because it was written in Offred’s point of view and she wasn’t supposed to have much agency. Still, I honestly struggled with finishing this book because of it.

The Testaments

My rating: 4/5 Stars

Content Warnings: Sexual content, Misogyny, Suicide, Depression, Kidnapping, Emotional manipulation

Summary:

And so I step up, into the darkness within; or else the light.
When the van door slammed on Offred’s future at the end of The Handmaid’s Tale, readers had no way of telling what lay ahead.
With The Testamentsthe wait is over.
Margaret Atwood’s sequel picks up the story 15 years after Offred stepped into the unknown, with the explosive testaments of three female narrators from Gilead.

(Goodreads) (StoryGraph)

I’ve seen people say that this book was unnecessary, and I can see where they were coming from (this book doesn’t follow the characters from the first book) but I really enjoyed it more than the first. It shows a lot more of the worldbuilding that I missed in the first book, and having more independent characters removed that sense of disconnect that I felt with the writing style of the first book. I felt more connected to these characters.

My major complaint here is that the end felt a little rushed and sudden. I wish we had gotten a little more time with the aftermath of the main plot, especially with the characters and their emotional journey. This might just be a personal thing, because I am very much into character arcs, but I felt they were left with an unsatisfying resolution.

The Surge Episode 3: The Storm

MoonDragon Writes

It’s snowing. Blizzarding, really. Hard. It makes Rory so grateful that they made it back in time.

It never used to snow on the Ranch. Rory could count on one hand the number of times that she’s seen snow, and it had never been in the city. This was a relatively new phenomenon. It had, of course, only started with the Surge.

She still isn’t entirely used to seeing snow falling on them. It fills her with a sense of awe. And fear.

Her father’s face has darkened as they’ve stood watching the snow come down. She’s almost afraid to ask. “Did…did everyone make it back?”

He doesn’t respond right away, then sighs. “Hanna and Kady.”

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The Surge Episode 2: Supply Run

MoonDragon Writes

They need supplies.

Everyone knows it. The Surge happened long enough ago that they’re running low, but not so long ago that the Ranch is able to operate in a self-sustaining manner, despite their best efforts.

It’s time to send out scavenging parties. Rory can tell just by the way the adults in charge are acting. It’s almost as if they’re preparing for war, the way they’re running around assigning people to teams.

“Rory, you’ll be headed out with Carter and Naomi.” Her mother says as she passes.

Naomi’s cool. Rory thinks. She’s quiet and easy to work with. It’s Carter she’s worried about.

Carter Fawler was, well… he was part of one of the many families that took refuge at the Ranch when the Surge hit them. At first, Rory hadn’t noticed them, not that it would have made a difference if she had. It just would have…

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The Surge: Episode 1

MoonDragon Writes

Rory almost kicks the cat.

She yelps, flailing, and nearly falls flat on her face in her effort to avoid Pricilla as the tortie ducks in front of her feet.

She rights herself and sighs, bending to scoop the cat up. This isn’t the first time this has happened, and it won’t be the last. That’s just Pricilla. And, like always, as soon as she’s picked up, she squirms and claws until Rory drops her. She lands lightly on her feet and goes back to winding between Rory’s ankles.

“You’re going to get stepped on one of these days, ‘Cilla.” She tells the cat as the animal looks up at her with those big green eyes. It was moments like this that Rory wishes that her phone wasn’t a useless brick so that she could snap a picture.

There was no use for it, though.

She sighs, again, taking a…

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