Lovin' los libros

A book blog dedicated to young adult and new adult novels

Mini Reviews: The Orphan Queen by Jodi Meadows and The Girl at Midnight by Melissa Grey

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The Orphan Queen (The Orphan Queen #1)
    by: Jodi Meadows

Publication Date: Mar. 10, 2015
Publisher: Katherine Tegen Books
Genre: Fantasy
Age Group: Young Adult
Source: Borrowed from Library
Page Count: 393 pages
Order Links: Amazon | B&N
My Rating: 4/5 stars

Wilhelmina has a hundred identities.

She is a princess. When the Indigo Kingdom conquered her homeland, Wilhelmina and other orphaned children of nobility were taken to Skyvale, the Indigo Kingdom’s capital. Ten years later, they are the Ospreys, experts at stealth and theft. With them, Wilhelmina means to take back her throne.

She is a spy. Wil and her best friend, Melanie, infiltrate Skyvale Palace to study their foes. They assume the identities of nobles from a wraith-fallen kingdom, but enemies fill the palace, and Melanie’s behavior grows suspicious. With Osprey missions becoming increasingly dangerous and their leader more unstable, Wil can’t trust anyone.

She is a threat. Wraith is the toxic by-product of magic, and for a century using magic has been forbidden. Still the wraith pours across the continent, reshaping the land and animals into fresh horrors. Soon it will reach the Indigo Kingdom. Wilhelmina’s magic might be the key to stopping the wraith, but if the vigilante Black Knife discovers Wil’s magic, she will vanish like all the others.

Jodi Meadows introduces a vivid new fantasy full of intrigue, romance, dangerous magic, and one girl’s battle to reclaim her place in the world.
  
 
 
I was quite excited to start this one by Jodi Meadows. I adored Incarnate, so I was eager to start a new series by her. As much as I wanted to read this one, I found myself holding back, as I heard about the dreaded cliffhanger and how this book had its own support group. With the next book being SO far off, I decided to wait a bit. I think even had I waited a day before release, the next book was too far what with that whopper of a cliffhanger we were served. OUCH, Jodi Meadows. OUCH.
 
I enjoyed this one, but at the same time I felt a bit underwhelmed by it too. I remember most of what happened, but I really am fearful that come next year and The Mirror King, this will be a distant memory. I don't feel there was enough to really make it stand out from some of the other fantasy novels out there.
 
I really liked Wil and her friend Melanie and I definitely understand their plight. Wil is presumed dead by many and she is part of a group that wants to see her kingdom restored and their people freed from enslavement. She is forced to assume the role of nobility and make nice with the very people who took everything from her and her friends. However, Wil's group of outlaws isn't the only one out there fighting for justice. There is the one they call Black Knife who is a vigilante also out patrolling the streets of Skyvale, looking to keep the peace and ensure justice. I liked that he and Wil formed an alliance and I was definitely rooting for their romance. Things get quite complicated when Black Knife's identity is revealed and I was so heartbroken over some of his decisions at the end.
 
I do hope we find out more about the wraith in the next book because it felt a bit far-fetched for me at this point. I want to know more about it- its powers, its purpose, and how it became what it did in this book. Again, this wasn't a bad book, but it didn't blow me away like Jodi's debut novel did.




The Girl at Midnight (The Girl at Midnight #1)
   by: Melissa Grey

Publication Date: Apr. 28, 2015
Publisher: Delacorte Press
Genre: Fantasy
Age Group: Young Adult
Source: Borrowed from Library
Page Count: 357 pages
Order Links: Amazon | B&N
My Rating: 4/5 stars

Beneath the streets of New York City live the Avicen, an ancient race of people with feathers for hair and magic running through their veins. Age-old enchantments keep them hidden from humans. All but one. Echo is a runaway pickpocket who survives by selling stolen treasures on the black market, and the Avicen are the only family she's ever known.

Echo is clever and daring, and at times she can be brash, but above all else she's fiercely loyal. So when a centuries-old war crests on the borders of her home, she decides it's time to act.

Legend has it that there is a way to end the conflict once and for all: find the Firebird, a mythical entity believed to possess power the likes of which the world has never seen. It will be no easy task, though if life as a thief has taught Echo anything, it's how to hunt down what she wants . . . and how to take it.

But some jobs aren't as straightforward as they seem. And this one might just set the world on fire.
  
 
 
After being rec'd this one by a few trusty blogger friends, I knew I needed to give it a read. I'm so glad I did because I really enjoyed it. It did take a bit to get into, as most fantasies do for me, but once I found my groove I could not put it down. I was a little confused initially as to the races, the conflict between them, and what purpose the Firebird would hold. However, as I read, things became clearer and I understood what at first I did not.
 
I did have a hard time picturing the Avicen and the Drakharin in my mind though. It was surreal to think these two races of creatures lived in modern times and even wore normal clothes you and I would wear, but obviously having to cover some of their features.
 
I liked the characters for the most part and was pleasantly surprised by some of the relationships that developed. My only issue was that I had a hard time getting a grasp of how Echo truly felt for Caius. I ship those two 100%, but things between them are complicated. For one, Echo technically has a boyfriend and Caius has never really gotten over his true love, Rose. Still, I loved the scenes these two flirted with one another and their first kiss... so much swooning.
 
Grey ended this book in a pretty good place. There's no cliffhanger, but things are definitely going to be difficult from here on out, considering the revelations in this book. I am really looking forward to seeing the direction the second book goes!
 

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14 comments

  1. Four stars and four stars! YAY! These two are two of my favorite fantasy novels for the year. Also, ALL THE PURPLE! My favorite color. So glad you enjoyed these books, Jess! Fabulous reviews :)

    Also - love the new layout! In Blogger, too! Can you link me to your designer? :D

    Alyssa @ The Eater of Books!

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  2. Yeah I agree with you about The Orphan Queen. It really wasn't as memorable and it was pretty easy to figure out the big twist. Even the cliffhanger didn't feel that impactful on me for some reason.

    I'm glad you liked The Girl at Midnight. It was really hard to picture the creatures but it was also really cool in my head. I can't wait for the next book!

    Great reviews, Jess!

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    1. I definitely enjoyed Girl at Midnight more and am much more excited for that sequel than TOQ sadly. I will still read the latter, but I am so bummed since I LOVED Jodi's debut series.

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  3. So glad to hear you enjoyed both of these for the most part... although I'm kinda bummed you were a bit underwhelmed by OQ... I think I'm gonna hold off on that one until I get the second book. Great reviews!

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    1. I was so bummed I was underwhelmed. :( But I think waiting for the second book is a good decision. :D

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  4. There is much love for The Orphan Queen - but you know me and hype... It sounds good but the fact you mentioned it was kind of unmemorable puts me off a bit.

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    1. I think the hype monster got me as well Tonya. I just wasn't wowed... But lately it's taking some really spectacular writing to wow me...

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  5. Both of these sound interesting, but The Girl at Midnight is the one that really tempts me to read it. [sighs] And my TBR list is already so long!

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    1. Aw I hear you Lark! My TBR runneth over! LOL. But Girl at Midnight is definitely one to keep your eye on- it was really good.

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  6. I plan on reading The Orphan Queen soon. I didn't mean to put it off for so long, but maybe that's a good thing? Anyway, I've already read the ending and I'm sad by the guy's choices, too. :( Hopefully that will be rectified in the sequel.
    I've heard great things about The Girl at Midnight but I don't think it's for me, especially if the triangle persists in book 2. :/
    Lovely reviews!

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    1. I am really hoping they will be. Because I was like STOP ALREADY. Yeah, I wondered if you had read GaM considering the triangle. I'll let you know if it becomes a huge thing in the 2nd book. (I hope not.)

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  7. I have The Orphan Queen. I know just what you mean by enjoying a book, but at the same time it is not completely memorable. I may wait on it until the next book releases.

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  8. I've been meaning to get to these two! Aww I'm sad you were a bit underwhelmed by TOQ because you know, there's been so many RAVE reviews. I'll have to see what I think! And gah I still need to read GaM too! as you know, I fail at reading lately. but I'm glad you enjoyed it!

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