Saturday, November 14, 2015

Saturday Pages: Mini Reviews: The Rest of Us Just Live Here, An Ember in The Ashes & Winter!!!

Hiya there!

How's your Saturday going? I hope the weekend is going well! I work this weekend so I plan to be really lazy and not do much other than that!

For this week's Saturday Pages I have a bunch of mini-reviews because I have been in a rather massive reiew-writing slump and I feel that mini-reviews are much more manageable and less imposing that having to write a looong review, even more when I really loved all these books and sometimes when you really love a book, it's harder to find the coherent words for it!

I feel like I have mostly abandoned (& FAILED!) my challenges for this year, but since one of the books is a debut, I'm totally counting it towards my 2015 Debut Author Challenge!

An Ember in the Ashes (An Ember in the Ashes, #1)An Ember in the Ashes by Sabaa Tahir

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

It took me a while to read this book because I started it when the hype was at its peak and for some reason it didn't seem to grab me at the time. I decided to set it back down for a while and it was the right call. Now that the hype is gone (and I know for sure there is a sequel coming) I picked it up again and simply devoured it!

An Ember in the Ashes is told in dual POV, Elias and Laia, both part of this reimagined Roman Empire-ish world, one an Elite soldier, the other one of the oppresed & conquered, both looking for freedom and both stuck in a situation where they cannot reach it.

The world is brutal, the military training is brutal, slavery is brutal, the power plays are brutal and there are so many characters driving their own agendas without regard of others that is a wonder how some of them remain human. There's also a magical feel to the world bulding and the world, some glances at beauty and freedom and happiness that are the best motivators for the characters.

Elias and Laia's fights are very different from each other, Laia's trying to fight for her brother and trying to find acceptance of herself and finding her courage. Elias is trying to keep his individuality and his soul/conscience in a brutal world he never wanted to be part of.

And then we have the bigger picture issues, with the Trials, a new Emperor needed and the war that is coming towards the Empire and the humans that was foreseen but no one seems to remember.

The book can feel like its own story sorted but the ending has so many open threads unsorted and unfinished that it NEEDED a sequel, and I'm so very glad we'll be getting it! Not soon enough, because sequels are never here soon enough unless you're dealing with a finished series.

An Ember in the Ashes is a stunning debut! With magical writing, fantastic world building, imperfect & believable character with great development and neck-breaking pacing! Very well deserved 4 to 4.5 stars!

The Rest of Us Just Live HereThe Rest of Us Just Live Here by Patrick Ness

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

My first Patrick Ness book and I am simply in love! This book is both funny and poignant, reflecting on what it is to try to get through normal life with whatever challenges it may throw at us, showing us what mental health issues can look like without ridicule but with enough humour so it wouldn't feel hopeless.

I love Mikey, I love Mel, I love Jared and I love Henna. They felt complex and genuine and raw and real. They felt very much human. I flipped the book open to check it out and I simply continued reading till I was done with it. Laughing and tearing up and simply loving it to bits!

This book had a strong sense of tongue in cheek humour when it dealt with the paranormal cliches of the "chosen ones" stories, but the focus was always more in the regular lives that the "rest of us" normal people have to deal with, even if we also saw how the events could affect the normal lives as collateral, without really being sure what the hell is going on.

I cannot really write a coherent and good enough review for this book because it has so many different aspects and genres and themes all mixed up and they all work together flawlessly!

This was my first Patrick Ness book and I think it won't be the last. If you haven't checked it out yet, don't fear the hype and go read it, it's very much worth it! Very well deserved 5 stars!

Winter (The Lunar Chronicles #4)Winter by Marissa Meyer

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Oh boy, what a wild ride this was!! And what a lovely book hangover is to be expected now because I really don't want to say goodbye to these characters!!

I'm not sure how to even begin to review Winter... I finished it yesterday and I still don't think I have enough coherent words! The wait was very much worth it and mostly all I can say is that I loved it and *ALL THE FLAILS*

First of all, I must give mad props to Marissa Meyer because she ALWAYS manages to make this romancephobe ship all her ships like there's no tomorrow! Cinder & Kai, Wolf (Ze'ev) & Scarlet, Cress & Thorne (oh boy these two were killing me in this boooook!!!) and Winter & Jacin!! From first attraction to alpha insticts, online crushes to long time friendship & love, she manages to make it work and root for the characters like mad!

As the final book of the series where all things come to an end, I was expecting planning and plotting and scheming and confrontation, but the amount of emotional ups and downs and the tension that the whole book managed to mantain for its over 800 pages is mind-blowing! I couldn't read fast enough and the book never felt long!!

I love the growth and development that the characters had in this one, even Winter we had barely ever met before, we get to know her and understand and feel so much for her, with her insanity born of kindness and a desire to do what's right and never harm anyone!

And as always, Marissa Meyer managed to weave some bits of the original fairty tale here and there, wonderful easter eggs/winks that I loved finding along the book! So well weaved into the story and the world she's created!

I... I just have no more words, and I'm already babbling!. Just, read it! It's brilliant! 5 very MUCH deserved stars!

View all my reviews


  1. So many wonderful books you've reviewed here Pili! I am hanging on until my copy of Winter comes in the mail, I NEED IT NOW! It sounds like it's getting rave reviews everywhere. I loved Ember too with how brutal the world it was and the characters as well! The Rest of Us Live here had a unique concept, but it wasn't my favourite. Great reviews!

    1. I will be re-reading Winter as soon as my hardcover arrives, I loved it so much!!

  2. Yaaay :D Gorgeous reviews Pili. <3 Stunning post, as always :D I'm so glad you liked all of these books so much. I'm curious about An Ember in the Ashes ;) But so angry about the romance. Ugh. But the plot sounds good :D And ahh, so glad you loved that second book. I think it seems so good :D Curious about it. And WINTER :D Yesss. It was the best book. Just. So perfect. So so glad that you loved it too. <3 Hope you are having a great weekend sweet girl :)

    1. Winter was beyond amazing!! I cannot wait till I can re-read my hardcover so I can read it more leisurely and enjoy the writing and everything even more!

  3. I only had one year long challenge other than the Goodreads challenge, and I have failed more than miserably. I have read one measly book for the Fairytale retelling. Hehe. NESS! I follow him on Twitter and he is a gem! I have not read any Ness yet, but I have A Monster Calls and I am going to be reading it for an anti-bullying challenge next week. Have you read that one?

    1. I had not read any Ness before The Rest of Us Just Live Here, but I'm now ready to try more of his books! I really need to re-check my goals and challenges and see how much I'm failing and if something can be salvaged!

  4. Ignoring the other two but YAAASSSS, EMBER! I'm so glad that you enjoyed it! Also super happy that we don't have *too* much longer to wait until the sequel is here (it's been agony since March!). Wonderful reviews, Pili!

    Alyssa @ The Eater of Books!

    1. Yeah, I'm so glad I waited till November! Waiting sincce March... torture!!

  5. I finished Winter last week and OMG I LOVED IT SO MUCH TOO! It was everything I wanted and more. I agree that it never felt like 800 pages and I could totally read 1000 pages more. It was incredibly fast paced and so action-packed <3 I think I'm going to have to go back and reread the whole series now because I don't want it to be over T___T I can't wait for the short stories to be released next year!
    Jenna @ Happy Indulgence

    1. YESSS! The short stories and epilogue that we're supposed to get there will be essential because I don't want to say goodbye to this characters at all!!


¡Muchas gracias por vuestros comentarios, leerlos me alegra el día!/ Thanks a lot for all your comments, reading them brightens my day!!