Book Review: Among the Beasts & Briars by Ashley Poston

Note: Review originally posted on Goodreads 07 January 2021

Among the Beasts & Briars
Publisher: Balzer + Bray
Published: 20 October 2020
Genre: Young Adult Fantasy

Panda Rating:


Cerys is safe in the kingdom of Aloriya.

Here there are no droughts, disease, or famine, and peace is everlasting. It has been this way for hundreds of years, since the first king made a bargain with the Lady who ruled the forest that borders the kingdom. But as Aloriya prospered, the woods grew dark, cursed, and forbidden. Cerys knows this all too well: when she was young, she barely escaped as the woods killed her friends and her mother. Now Cerys carries a small bit of the curse—the magic—in her blood, a reminder of the day she lost everything. The most danger she faces now, as a gardener’s daughter, is the annoying fox who stalks the royal gardens and won’t leave her alone.

As a new queen is crowned, however, things long hidden in the woods descend on the kingdom itself. Cerys is forced on the run, her only companions the small fox from the garden, a strange and powerful bear, and the magic in her veins. It’s up to her to find the legendary Lady of the Wilds and beg for a way to save her home. But the road is darker and more dangerous than she knows, and as secrets from the past are uncovered amid the teeth and roots of the forest, it’s going to take everything she has just to survive. 

TL;DR: Mine is an unpopular opinion but I didn’t end up loving this as much as I hoped I would and I was sad about not enjoying it more. If you’re looking for a YA fantasy that’s light on the world building and character development, but has a nice fairytale vibe with “far-off places, magical spells, and a prince in disguise” then I would recommend it!

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Blog Tour Review + Top 5 Reasons to Read: Glimpsed by G.F. Miller

Today is my stop on the TBR & Beyond Tours for Glimpsed by G.F. Miller. Special thanks to Simon & Schuster Books for providing the ARC in exchange for an honest review!

Be sure to click on the banner above to check out the rest of the amazing bloggers on tour!

Goodreads: Glimpsed
Publisher: Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers
Publication Date: 05 December 2020
Genre: Young Adult Contemporary/Fantasy
Panda Rating:

Perfect for fans of Geekerella and Jenn Bennett, this charming, sparkly rom-com follows a wish-granting teen forced to question if she’s really doing good—and if she has the power to make her own dreams come true.

Charity is a fairy godmother. She doesn’t wear a poofy dress or go around waving a wand, but she does make sure the deepest desires of the student population at Jack London High School come true. And she knows what they want even better than they do because she can glimpse their perfect futures.

But when Charity fulfills a glimpse that gets Vibha crowned homecoming queen, it ends in disaster. Suddenly, every wish Charity has ever granted is called into question. Has she really been helping people? Where do these glimpses come from, anyway? What if she’s not getting the whole picture?

Making this existential crisis way worse is Noah—the adorkable and (in Charity’s opinion) diabolical ex of one of her past clients—who blames her for sabotaging his prom plans and claims her interventions are doing more harm than good. He demands that she stop granting wishes and help him get his girl back. At first, Charity has no choice but to play along. But soon, Noah becomes an unexpected ally in getting to the bottom of the glimpses. Before long, Charity dares to call him her friend…and even starts to wish he were something more. But can the fairy godmother ever get the happily ever after?

BUY NOW: Amazon (US) | Barnes & Noble | Indigo | Indiebound

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Goodreads Monday – Among the Beasts & Briars by Ashley Poston

Welcome back to Goodreads Monday! It’s been a very hot minute since I did one but I figured I might as well get back into it! This weekly meme was started by @Lauren’s Page Turners and it invites you to pick a book from your TBR and explain why you want to read it. Easy enough, right? Feel free to join in if you want to! I’ll be using a random number generator to pick my books from my insanely long GR Want-to-read list.*

*Sorry if a book has been featured twice! I need to make better note of which ones I’ve done already!

This week’s featured book is Among the Beasts & Briars by Ashley Poston. This is a fairy tale inspired YA fantasy that was published in October 2020 and has a 3.88 rating on Goodreads with 600+ reviews.

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Goodreads Monday – The Waking Forest by Alyssa Wees

Welcome back to Goodreads Monday! It’s been a very hot minute since I did one but I figured I might as well get back into it! This weekly meme was started by @Lauren’s Page Turners and it invites you to pick a book from your TBR and explain why you want to read it. Easy enough, right? Feel free to join in if you want to! I’ll be using a random number generator to pick my books from my insanely long GR Want-to-read list.*

*Sorry if a book has been featured twice! I need to make better note of which ones I’ve done already!

This week’s featured book is The Waking Forest by Alyssa Wees. This is a YA paranormal fantasy that was published in 2019 and has a 3.35 rating on Goodreads with 300+ reviews. Hmm… Not that great?

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Tour the World in 30 Books Tour: Wicked As You Wish

Tour the World in 30 Books is a blog tour hosted by Sammie @ The Bookwyrm’s Den in support of her local public library’s Diverse Book Drive. The CCPL—a small, rural library in an area with a high poverty rate and a very homogeneous population, where people rarely have the means to travel or experience new perspectives. However, the library doesn’t believe that should stop people from learning more about the world around them, so they’re running a Diverse Book Drive through the month of September in an attempt to bring the rest of the world to the county instead. With a focus on MG and YA books, the CCPL aims to expose especially its young patrons to new and diverse perspectives and cultures.

I’ve been so excited to take part in this awesome tour! It’s such a wonderful way to visit other countries and learn about other cultures without having to leave the comfort of your home. I’m so happy to support a wonderful friend and librarian in promoting diverse reads in her small-town library. Be sure to check out the other wonderful posts and bloggers on tour—trust, you don’t want to miss out on seeing their awesome content! 😉

Today I’ll be talking about the book Wicked As You Wish by Rin Chupeco. You can also check out my og review for the book! I was a little unsure about how I wanted to do this post and to be honest, I’m still not 100% sure about it but I’m rolling with it and seeing where it takes me. I thought I’d share five reasons why you should read WAYW, but I’m also going to share a short reflection about reading this book, and I’ll be sharing a recipe for a Filipino dish that is one of my all-time favourite foods. What better (and more delicious) way is there to connect to a culture than through food? I hope you enjoy it!

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#TopTenTuesday: One Word Titles

It’s that time of the week again, friends! We’re back with another Top Ten Tuesday, a weekly meme hosted by Jana @ That Artsy Reader Girl. This week’s prompt is: books with single-word titles! This prompt was submitted by Kitty @ Kitty Marie’s Reading Corner (who you should definitely go follow right now)!

What would I ever do without Goodreads? I would fail, that’s what. I would never be able to do these posts because my memory fails so hard. I really couldn’t come up with one title until I looked at several lists on GR and realised that I have read a few books with single-word titles! Plus, plenty of them are actually books from series that I love, so I can’t believe that I couldn’t think of any titles to start 😂

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Review & Favourite Quotes: Wicked As You Wish

Thanks to NetGalley and Sourcebooks Fire for the e-ARC in exchange for an honest review.

Wicked As You Wish (A Hundred Names for Magic #1)
Publisher: Sourcebooks Fire
Release date: 03 March 2020
Genre: Young Adult Fantasy

An unforgettable alternative history fairytale series from the author of The Bone Witch trilogy about found family, modern day magic, and finding the place you belong.

Many years ago, the magical Kingdom of Avalon was left desolate and encased in ice when the evil Snow Queen waged war on the powerful country. Its former citizens are now refugees in a world mostly devoid of magic. Which is why the crown prince and his protectors are stuck in…Arizona.

Prince Alexei, the sole survivor of the Avalon royal family, is in hiding in a town so boring, magic doesn’t even work there. Few know his secret identity, but his friend Tala is one of them. Tala doesn’t mind—she has secrets of her own. Namely, that she’s a spellbreaker, someone who negates magic.

Then hope for their abandoned homeland reignites when a famous creature of legend, and Avalon’s most powerful weapon, the Firebird, appears for the first time in decades. Alex and Tala unite with a ragtag group of new friends to journey back to Avalon for a showdown that will change the world as they know it.

Amazon (US) | Barnes & Noble | iTunes | Book Depository | Google Books

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Top 5 Saturday: Books about Mermaids

We’re back with another Top 5 Saturday! I might’ve missed last week’s topic but I will come back to it at some point 🙂 Just in case you don’t know Top 5 Saturday is a weekly meme created by Mandy @ Devouring Books and it’s where we list the top five books (they can be books on your TBR, favourite books, books you loved/hated) based on the week’s topic. You can see the upcoming schedule at the end of my post 🙂 This week’s topic is: books about mermaids!

I don’t know about you but I’ve always loved the idea of mermaids and especially of being one! I surprisingly (or not) can’t recall having read many books about mermaids but I do have several on my TBR now (and they’re not all of the pining-teenager Ariel variety but more like the will-eat-you-alive kind)! Here’s what’s on my list:

I was lucky enough to get picked for the blog tour for The Deep. It looks and sounds sufficiently creepy and since we all know I’m a chicken, I’m starting to wonder what business I have reading a book that’s guaranteed to terrify me? I guess I just won’t step into the ocean for a while (not at all hard to do when living on a tropical island *cough*)!

I’ve been really looking forward to giving Sea Witch a try. I have to be honest and say the gorgeous cover is what initially caught my eye but I’m hoping the content will be just as good (although I have heard some mixed reviews)!

All the Stars and Teeth isn’t only about mermaids but I thought it still counts. Again it’s mostly thanks to the insanely good looking cover that caught my eye that this was put on my radar, and I’m only convinced to read it even more now because I’ve seen so many reviews for it lately. They are mixed reviews but I’m hoping I’ll enjoy it all the same!

I’ve heard a lot of great things about Christina Henry’s books and a few of them have admittedly been sitting on my Kindle library for quite some time now… The Mermaid is one of them and I’m really curious to see what her writing is like!

I’ve been looking forward to giving Coral a try ever since I first heard about it but I heard it can be quite triggering as it’s quite heavy on the mental health issues. I’m looking forward to finally picking it up once I feel ready for it though!

Upcoming Schedule:

  • 02 Feb 2020: Dystopian books
  • 08 Feb 2020: Mental Illness
  • 15 Feb 2020: Books about Mermaids
  • 22 Feb 2020: Books about spies
  • 29 Feb 2020: Books inspired by mythology

Do you like reading books with mermaids? What are some of your favourites? Share your recs down below!

Goodreads Monday – 02 December

We’re back with another Goodreads Monday, a weekly meme started by @Lauren’s Page Turners. This meme invites you to pick a book from your TBR and explain why you want to read it. Easy enough, right? Feel free to join in if you want to! I’ll be using a random number generator to pick my books from my insanely long GR Want-to-read list.

This week’s book is Hunted by Meagan Spooner. I had absolutely no idea that this was even on my list but I did add it in 2017 so… That’s a long enough time for my very spotty memory to completely forget! 😆This is a YA fantasy retelling of Beauty and the Beast and it’s got 3.92 stars with 21,269 ratings and 4,101 reviews.

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Goodreads Monday – 21 October

We’re back with another Goodreads Monday, a weekly meme started by @Lauren’s Page Turners. This meme invites you to pick a book from your TBR and explain why you want to read it. Easy enough, right? Feel free to join in if you want to! I’ll be using a random number generator to pick my books from my insanely long GR Want-to-read list.

This week’s book is The Snowman (Harry Hole #7) by Jo Nesbo. I think I vaguely remember adding this to my list after seeing Michael Fassbender on the movie poster (in 2018) and realizing it was a book before it was a movie 🤣I unfortunately only managed to get my hands on the movie-tie-in cover but it’s not the worst I’ve seen… The book has a pretty great rating of 4.08 stars with 96,300+ ratings and 7,700+ reviews!

Soon the first snow will come

A young boy wakes to find his mother missing. Outside, he sees her favourite scarf – wrapped around the neck of a snowman.

And then he will appear again

Detective Harry Hole soon discovers that an alarming number of wives and mothers have gone missing over the years.

And when the snow is gone…

When a second woman disappears, Harry’s worst suspicion is confirmed: a serial killer is operating on his home turf.

…he will have taken someone else

Why do I want to read it?

I had no idea this was book seven of a series but I also heard that this was the best of the series? I do like a good thriller and this one definitely sounds like it’ll be a good one! It obviously doesn’t get cold here but I think it’d be perfect to read over the Christmas holidays or as a winter read. I think I do want to watch the movie as well, but I definitely want to read the series first. I don’t actually know if the movie is any good (I haven’t seen reviews) although it was in the cinema for a while, if I’m not mistaken.

Have you read The Snowman or any books in the series? Do you want to?
Leave me a comment and let’s chat!