Book Blog, Book Talk, Reading Challenge

July Bingo Reveal

Hey everyone! How is your June going?

Soooo I’m still not reading or posting🙃 I’m hoping with the release of one of my most anticipated reads Witchshadow by Susan Dennard will help with this. I need a miracle at this point!

I want to thank everyone who left a kind message in my last post. They were greatly appreciated💙

The one bright spot in all of this is making these bingo boards even though I haven’t been able to use them 😔

I’m real excited to show you July’s board 🎮

What do you think?? I hope you can use it, share it, and enjoy it💙🎮

Until the next time🌈💙

Book Blog, Book Talk

May Bingo Board Reveal

Hello again! It’s already time for the next installment. Where does the time go?

How has April being treating you? This month is kicking my butt. I didn’t post last week because I needed a break.

So, I’m going to keep this short.

May’s Board:

I hope you’ll share this and join me.

Do you have anything fun planned in May? I’m hoping to spend more time outdoors.

Book Blog, Book Tag, Book Talk

The Aesthete Blogger Award

I’ve been graciously nominated by Ashmita @ The Fictional Journal (The creator of this fantastic award) and Pilar @ the Bookworm Shelf

I adore both of these ladies so much and I always look forward to their posts because they’re funny and wonderful. If you haven’t done yourself the favor and followed them you need to. You won’t regret it.


Here are the rules:-

  • Use the official logo/graphic of the award and display it on your blog.
  • List the rules.
  • Show some love to the one who nominated you!
  • Mention the creator (Ashmita@ the Fictional Journal) and link it back to the original post.
  • Tell me a something about this world that you admire.
  • What is your favourite form of creativity?
  • Nominate 7 lovely people and notify them by commenting on their posts; spread some love!
  • Ask your nominees 4 questions.
  • Share something you created. (can be anything!)
  • And lastly, just so you know: I LOVE YOUR CREATIONS!

Ashmita and Pilar asked

What colour is your soul?

Without taking the quiz I say Blue, specifically baby blue. Upon taking a quiz I got Blue! I’m not surprised it is my favorite color. It’s so beautiful but it is also so calming.

Ashmita question

Think about your happiest memory. Then tell me the book/song that you are reminded of?

For some reason this is terribly difficult for me to do Lol. One of my happiest memories is going to the lake as a kid and feeding this grumpy swan. Looking back that swan reminds me of the old man from UP! The swan was sad and grumpy because it had lost it’s partner. All this to say that this happy memory reminds me of the sad book A Man Called Ove by Fredrik Backman.

Pilar question

What Disney or Pixar animated movie do you think is the most artistic?

Finding Nemo. I loved the art of the underwater landscapes but I also really enjoyed the storytelling aspect as well. Honestly every one of their movies is masterful in some way and this was incredible difficult to pick one. However even as a kid I knew this was something special. I haven’t seen Raya yet but I really need too!

Ashmita question

Finish the sentence: once upon a time, there lived a turtle in…

an alcove on the edge of the world. They moved there for peace and tranquility but they found something shocking. It seemed that every turtle had that same idea. The wait times to reserve a spot on a outcropping was astronomical. The water was warm but too full to relax within. This once in a lifetime adventure was turning more sour as the days passed as more and more turtles continued to show up. Every which way they turned stacks upon stacks of turtles. If they had wanted to be this close to another turtle they would have stayed in their family’s pond. Did the turtle stay or did they leave? Find out for me because I have no idea how to end this story LOL

Pilar question

Have you ever tried your hand at acting, painting/drawing, dancing, etc.?

I had to take drama one time for school and I hated it. I”m super duper shy so I hate being in the spotlight. I would rather be behind the scenes making sets or costumes literally anything other than being on stage reciting dialogue. I LOVE art on the other hand mostly drawing but painting is fun now and then. Dancing I’ve only ever done in the comfort of my home lol I did gymnastics growing up which was fun.

Ashmita asked

Do you have an aesthetic?/What is your favourite aesthetic?

Is chaotic lazy an aesthetic? because that’s mine lol If I could pick an aesthetic it would be Bubblegum Witch. It combines the pastel whimsy with the moon, stars and crystals.

Pilar asked

If you had to give up reading or listening to music (including playing an instrument), which one would you choose?

Woooow hurtful much LOL Two of my favorite things and I have to give up one of them?? I would give up reading because at least with songs I would still have a story. I love stories the most but I also really love music and at least I would have a little of both with music.

A favorite form of creativity for me is crafts I made a post (Shadowbox Butterfly) recently showcasing something I created. I’m trying to make more posts on the things I craft but if you want sneak peeks you can check out my Ig: PastelGreetings for what I’m working on.

Thank you So Much Pilar and Ashmita!!! ❤ ❤

I’m tagging:

Elaine Howlin

Bex the Bibliophile

Soph’s Book World

My questions for you are:

1. What does your dream library look like?

2. If you could create a new animal, what would it look like?

3. What was something fun you made as a kid?

4. What creative talent do you wish you had?

Book Blog, Book Talk

Let’s wrap it up

Another month has come and gone which I find rude. Why Time gotta fly? Did you have a good month. If not I hope this one will be better ❤

Spring is here and everything is yellow and my head always hurts yay The beautiful flowers are worth the pain sometimes lol

The first two books I read were

Cold Iron Heart
Summer Bound (Wicked Lovely #5.2)

Cold Iron Heart, and Summer Bound by Melissa Marr

Rating: 2 out of 5.

The first is a prequel to her Wicked Lovely series and the other is the bridging of the prequel to the new continuation series. Last year I tried re reading the series because I wanted to read these new books in preparation of the next installment. I haven’t read past the first book since I read them the first time a decade ago. I found that I couldn’t continue on because they were worse than I remember. I enjoyed these books when I first read them because it deals with the fey and their darker natures. This all leads to Why did I pick these up? Because I had hoped they would be better. I’m glutton for punishment LMAO Cold Iron Heart was boring and then Summer Bound was just way too short but it did make me curious for what’s to come. LOOOOOL like seriously helpp me. Are there any books you pick up even though you’re probably not going to like them but you still have to know?

Aru Shah and the Tree of Wishes (Pandava Quartet, #3)

Aru Shah and the Tree of Wishes by Roshani Chokshi

Rating: 4 out of 5.

WHAT was that ending ??!?!!? How DARE! Luckily for me I only have to suffer a couple more sleeps until this gets resolved & it better! Lol

It is so wonderful to see their friendships grow and watching them get more comfortable with their selves and each other. I just love this kind of growth.

I simply adore the myths and ways they’re introduced and I need to know how all of this is going to wrap up.

Witchshadow (The Witchlands, #4)

Witchshadow (extended excerpt) by Susan Dennard

I NEED THE WHOLE BOOK NOW! How am I to wait??? But wait I shall even though this book is going to end me. I think its been established that I love torturing myself lol Send Help.

I couldn’t help myself from requesting this on Netgalley because I’m a glutton for torture but I needed it. Since this got pushed back to June it’s been quiet on the teasers. This extended excerpt was a wild ride that has reinvigorated me to reread this whole series before diving into this book when I finally get in my hands.

I read three other books but they were re reads and that post can be found here As Good as I Remember

What I watched

Fruits Basket Wall Calendar -

Fruits Basket

I have tried watching the original a couple of times and just could. not. So I found myself awake and couldn’t go back to sleep one night and ended up binge watching the first season. I have since watched both seasons and I’m nervous and excited for the final season. I didn’t know that this show would get dark, like dark, dark. All I hear from or see from the fandom is shipping wars. Trigger warning for mental, emotional and physical abuse.

And lastly my Bingo board

This is the first month that I didn’t get a bingo 😦

For April’s board head over to Revealing April’s Bingo for all the details.

What was your favorite book of March?

Book Blog, Book Talk

Are they as good as I remember?

Last year being remarkably the most draining year for me has made it hard to remember the details to things. The fact that so much bleeds into one another to the point that I no longer can distinguish between days, months and even the books I read. I’m fairly good with recalling details in books especially when they’re favorites but for the life of me these books I remember the v i b e s and almost nothing else lol.

Which makes me question myself when recommending them because are they as good as I remember or is everything else so terrible this felt like gold? I wanted to re-read these stories immediately upon finishing them but I also wanted to conquer my ever growing tbr pile. Honestly, I’m glad I didn’t jump back into these books until now because it gives me an opportunity to go in without the high and find out if I do still consider these favorites.

I did something similar to this last year and found that my initial enjoyment was not there the second time around. I still enjoyed the books but critically I saw things that if I had read that book at any other point in time I would not have favored it so. I think that’s also something that should be noted when reading things based off others enjoyment of a story is that sometimes it isn’t the book or you but the timing.

Anyway, I’ve rambled long enough on to the books!

A Spark of White Fire (The Celestial Trilogy, #1)
The Last Namsara (Iskari, #1)
Empire of Sand (The Books of Ambha, #1)

A Spark of White Fire by Sangu Mandanna YA Science Fiction. In a universe of capricious gods, dark moons, and kingdoms built on the backs of spaceships, a cursed queen sends her infant daughter away, a jealous uncle steals the throne of Kali from his nephew, and an exiled prince vows to take his crown back. Raised alone and far away from her home on Kali, Esmae longs to return to her family. When the King of Wychstar offers to gift the unbeatable, sentient warship Titania to a warrior that can win his competition, she sees her way home: she’ll enter the competition, reveal her true identity to the world, and help her famous brother win back the crown of Kali. It’s a great plan. Until it falls apart. Inspired by the Mahabharata and other ancient Indian stories, A Spark of White Fire is a lush, sweeping space opera about family, curses, and the endless battle between jealousy and love.

The Last Namsara by Kirsten Ciccarelli YA Fantasy. In the beginning, there was the Namsara: the child of sky and spirit, who carried love and laughter wherever he went. But where there is light, there must be darkness—and so there was also the Iskari. The child of blood and moonlight. The destroyer. The death-bringer. These are the legends that Asha, daughter of the king of Firgaard, has grown up learning in hushed whispers, drawn to the forbidden figures of the past. But it isn’t until she becomes the fiercest, most feared dragon slayer in the land that she takes on the role of the next Iskari—a lonely destiny that leaves her feeling more like a weapon than a girl. Asha conquers each dragon and brings its head to the king, but no kill can free her from the shackles that await at home: her betrothal to the cruel commandant, a man who holds the truth about her nature in his palm. When she’s offered the chance to gain her freedom in exchange for the life of the most powerful dragon in Firgaard, she finds that there may be more truth to the ancient stories than she ever could have expected. With the help of a secret friend—a slave boy from her betrothed’s household—Asha must shed the layers of her Iskari bondage and open her heart to love, light, and a truth that has been kept from her.

Empire of Sand by Tasha Suri Adult Fantasy. The Amrithi are outcasts; nomads descended of desert spirits, they are coveted and persecuted throughout the Empire for the power in their blood. Mehr is the illegitimate daughter of an imperial governor and an exiled Amrithi mother she can barely remember, but whose face and magic she has inherited. When Mehr’s power comes to the attention of the Emperor’s most feared mystics, she must use every ounce of will, subtlety, and power she possesses to resist their cruel agenda. Should she fail, the gods themselves may awaken seeking vengeance.

My findings are…


I LOVE them still!!!

I was worried but it was for naught, thankfully. I’m so happy I did this because I forgot so much from the first time. I guess that’s to be expected because your trying to take in so much that some things will slip through. Just another reason why I adore re- reading because it gives you a chance to reconnect and find new things. I do think I love the books more now than initially which is also a great discovery!

I also discovered that these books have a few common traits such as gods and myths. I really appreciate magic systems that establish new or remixes older myths to make them fresh and new. And all three of them do that. Another trait is they all have the fierce girl paired with soft boi trope *heart eyes 4ever*

A Spark of White Fire by Sangu Mandanna I forgot how much gods play into this series. I love the friendships and relationships in general. They’re just so real in their complexity. This story still managed to make me cry so this book has my heart forever in a chokehold.

The Last Namsara by Kirsten Ciccarelli The way in which this story is told fits so beautifully with the story at large. Stories nestled inside stories s one of my favorite things. There is a lot of layers to this story and watching them unfurl is incredible.

Empire of Sand by Tasha Suri Out of the three this is my least favorite because it feels like its missing something. It’s still a wonderful read it just isn’t in my top five. There’s a lack of comradery in this book. I need friendships in books. Basically I need an ensemble cast of characters.There is a solid friendship established in the romance which I love but I need more character interactions.

Thank you for reading this very long post. Let me know if you’ve read any of these books or if you plan to!

Craft with the Rainbow, Crafts

Butterfly Shadow Box || Crafter

Welcome to the first post in the Crafting with the Rainbow portion of the blog. When I originally created this blog I wanted to incorporate my love for both reading and crafting. I’ve definitely shared my love of books but I’ve neglected the crafts side of things.

I think there will always be disproportionately more reading posts than crafting posts. So, if you’re only here for the book content stick around because the next post will be for you. To find out how I made this Butterfly Shadow Box read on.

There are so many variations and ways to make a shadow box. These make great wall decorations or bookshelf décor. These are so versatile you can do what I did and put lights in the inside.

As much as I like creating my own designs sometimes it’s nice to take the hassle out of it and just buy one. Especially since this design is better than anything I could ever come up with. The template I bought from Light Box Good Man They have a ton of designs.

I love this design!

These are easy to cut if you have a machine to do that for you. I’m not sure these would make for easy cutting with just a pair of scissors or exacto knife.

I also made the frame, there are plenty of places that sell templates of the frame but I just made mine to fit this.

I used a combination of matte, glossy, and shimmer cardstock. I wanted it to match my library so I used a bunch of different hues of blue.

And that’s really all there is to this. If you have any questions let me know in the comments.   

Do you enjoy crafting? What was the last thing you made?

Book Blog, Book Tag, Book Talk

The Zodiac Sign Book Tag

I was tagged by Ashmita @ Fictional Journal since I’m also a Scorpio There are two prompts one for music & one for books but I’m just going to do the book one. All the original graphics were made by Panna @ Just Dreamland

The Rules:

1. Link back to the creator(@Just Dreamland).
2. Answer all the prompts.
3. I was tagged by Ashmita @ Fictional Journal 
4. Use the original graphics and credit @Just Dreamland.
5. Name your Zodiac sign.
6. Don't forget to use #ItsAZodiacThing.
7. You can do either the music one or the book one or both!
8. Tag five bloggers.
9. Have fun!

The City of Brass (The Daevabad Trilogy, #1)

The City of Brass by S.A. Chakraborty fits this description so well!!

This is such an incredible journey that lasts three books. The banter between the characters to the wonderful descriptions and worldbuilding. You never know what’s going to happen next and I love that! <- I think that encapsulates an Aries through and through.

These Violent Delights (These Violent Delights, #1)

These Violent Delights by Chloe Gong

,,, I mean it was the first one to come to mind. I obviously want a happy ending but considering what it’s based off of I’m not holding my breath but I can dream. It’s a tale as old as time and with so much blood between the families I wonder if they could put differences aside and embrace each other.

You Should See Me in a Crown

You Should See me in a Crown by Leah Johnson

This was soo much fun to read. I love how witty and great the group of friends were. It’s a cute and fun story that really entertained.

Monday's Not Coming

Monday’s not Coming by Tiffany D. Jackson

Who isn’t moved by this story? How can it not resonate within your soul. This is a heartbreaking journey for our main character and the reader that will change both lives. The love of friendships that transcends time and life itself is so beautiful.

The Luxe (Luxe, #1)
Rumors (Luxe, #2)
Envy (Luxe, #3)

The Luxe series by Anna Godbersen A book with drama? Check. Love? Check. Fancy wear? Check. and Hope? maybe. lol This series takes place in 1900 New York. The start of a new century tends to have hope. This series would be great for those that love Gossip Girl as this is full of fashion and DRAMA. I can’t say how well this series holds up as its been a decade since I’ve read them but I remember the fancy dresses and soooo many scandals.

Record of a Spaceborn Few (Wayfarers #3)
The Galaxy, and the Ground Within (Wayfarers, #4)

Record of a Spaceborn Few OR The Galaxy and the Ground Within by Becky Chambers,. You can’t go wrong with either of these two. This is a series that you can read out of order. I say personally for me I enjoyed The Galaxy and the Ground Within, which is book four way more. The former book is more introspective and there’s a thing that happens that makes everyone re-evaluate their lives and I really didn’t like how that was used in that way. These stories have that cozy comfort feel which I feel is very fitting with a Virgo.

Concrete Rose (The Hate U Give, #0)

Concrete Rose by Angie Thomas

This has a remarkably frank look at life. It’s refreshing in that we’re seeing the teen dad side of fatherhood. We never see that depiction and what that entails. Thomas’s writing style brings so much raw honesty to a hard situation that many people face. I love how it showcases that no matter at what stage in life you are raising a family takes a whole village.

The Yellow Wallpaper and Other Stories

The Yellow Wallpaper by Charlotte Perkins Gilman

This one was hard to come up with because I don’t read many twisty thrillers which apparently is going against my sign LOL I wouldn’t say this has a good plot twist but it is a thrilling story. Reading this felt like watching a horror movie in that the closer to the end the louder the music played. The writing and the style of journal entries set an incredible pace that kept my heart rate up.

A Universe of Wishes: A We Need Diverse Books Anthology

A Universe of Wishes edited by Dhonielle Clayton.

To me summer read makes me think quick stories. Short stories are a great way to read a little at a time. These stories are full of adventure, heart and soul. They each have something to offer everyone with the magical, fantastical or space adventures. Just because these stories are short doesn’t mean they aren’t full of depth and heart.

Raybearer (Raybearer, #1)

Raybearer by Jordan Ifueko

The whole dynamic is that they’re attuned to one another and are a family to each other even though they we’re formed to protect the next emperor. The friendships bond are as close as family they literally get sick if they aren’t in contact with each other for a couple of days. The world and myth in this story is fascinating and is only briefly touched upon. It has so much left t explore with their bond and what it means.


Piranesi by Susanne Clarke

Umm this was unique, quirky in a sense. To me quirky makes it seem as though this book will be fun, and light-hearted but that’s not the case especially the further you venture into this story. It makes you think and wonder what are you reading but slowly but surely it reveals itself. This won’t be for everyone but it’s so intriguing that you have to keep reading because you have to know what is happening.

A Crown of Wishes (The Star-Touched Queen, #2)
Star-Touched Stories
The Gilded Wolves (The Gilded Wolves, #1)

I’m picking an author because each one of their books has bewitched and enchanted me beyond worlds I couldn’t have dreamed up on my own.

Well that’s the tag! If you’re interested in doing this consider yourself tagged by me!

Book Blog, Book Tag, Book Talk

Get to Know the Fantasy Reader tag

If you’ve been here any length of time than you know that fantasy is my favorite genre. It’s my most read & I don’t foresee that ending anytime soon. I’ve seen this tag around and I always say I’m going to do it but then I forget LOL So I’m doing it now before I forget again xD

I was not tagged by anyone to do this. I also won’t be tagging anyone as this is an old tag and I don’t know who hasn’t already done this.

Bree Hill originally created this tag as the Get to Know the Romance Reader Tag, and The Book Pusher adapted it for fantasy readers.

1. What is your Fantasy origin story? (how you came to read your first fantasy novel)

The Mouse and the Motorcycle

If we’re talking first, first The Mouse and the Motorcycle by Beverly Clearly comes to mind. I received this as a kid in school when someone I think from publishing came to talk to us and they gave out books. I recognized the author’s name because of Beevus and Ramona.  

2. If you could be the main character in a fantasy novel who would be the author and what’s one trope you’d insist be in the story?

We Hunt the Flame (Sands of Arawiya, #1)

I would want the Sunshine- Grumpy duo I could play either part Lol. The author I’d want to do this is Hafsah Faizal of We Hunt the Flame. I love her writing style and I already know that she would do that trope so much justice!!

3. What is a fantasy you’ve read this year that you want more people to read?

Raybearer (Raybearer, #1)

I haven’t read as much fantasy this year, yet. However, Raybearer by Jordan Ifueko is one that I saw talk of when it was releasing last year but has since disappeared from the forefront and that can’t stand. This was a fantastic story with such an interesting world of magic and myths. It has found family with a plethora of amazing characters.

4. What is your favorite Fantasy sub genre? What sub genre have you not read much from?

Gods of Jade and Shadow

A favorite sub genre is Historical Fiction fantasy, a la Gods of Jade and Shadow by Silvia Moreno- Garcia or The Gold Seer trilogy by Rae Carson. Historical fiction alone is alright but put a fantastical element or a mystery and its better. My least read sub genre of fantasy is Magical Realism or Contemporary Fantasy. This feels paradoxical since historical fiction is contemporary of the past and yet I’m okay with it. xD don’t try to make sense of me because you can’t lol

5. Who is one of your auto-buy fantasy authors?

The Star-Touched Queen (The Star-Touched Queen, #1)
A Crown of Wishes (The Star-Touched Queen, #2)
The Gilded Wolves (The Gilded Wolves, #1)

Roshani Chokshi. I love the worlds she creates and her writing is exquisite! For me auto-buy authors are people who I would literally read anything they produce. She could write in any genre about any old thing and I will be buying it. She has such a way with not only words but characters. They’re always so vivid and lifelike it hurts.       

6. How do you find fantasy recommendations? (GoodReads, Youtube, Podcasts, Blogs, Instagram, etc)

All of the above (well not podcasts cause I don’t listen to those). I’ve been doing this *gestures to reading on the internet* for a long while and you just learn to cultivate a system. GoodReads was the first place I started getting recommendations and it was a bit of a hit or miss. I now follow people whose taste align with mine and whose opinion and judgment I trust.

7. What is an upcoming fantasy release your excited for?

The Jasmine Throne (Burning Kingdoms, #1)

I am looking forward to The Jasmine Throne by Tasha Suri. This is coming out near another exciting release & I’m expecting a huge reading slump to follow.This story sounds amazing and I really enjoyed the last book I read from this author. I believe this has enemies to lovers trope sooo YAY!

8. What is one misconception about fantasy you would like to lay to rest?

“All fantasy is the same.” No genre or age category is all the same. It shows a lack of effort on the part of the speaker who isn’t trying to find books that they like. It’s okay if you outgrow a genre or age category you can always come back to it, it’s not going anywhere. I just think it’s disingenuous to shelve every story into one slot. And sometimes you need to ask yourself if it really is the book/genre or you with the problem. 

9. If someone had never read fantasy before and asked you to recommend the first 3 books that come to mind as places to start, what would those recommendations be?

Aru Shah and the End of Time (Pandava Quartet, #1)
Empire of Sand (The Books of Ambha, #1)

Aru Shah and the End of Time by Roshani Chokshi this is middle grade which is easy to get into and has a lot of action and humor, Stain by A.G. Howard standalone YA fairytale retelling. Again something easy to slide into and a story that may be known but with a fresh take and there’s no huge commitment since it’s a standalone. Empire of Sand by Tasha Suri, this is an adult standalone but it has a companion novel. This is slower paced so no fear of being overwhelmed with the lore of the world while getting to know the characters.

What’s your favorite fantasy book?

Book Blog, Book Talk

Reveal: March Bingo || Monthly Bingo

Its that time again to reveal the next month’s bingo board!

Do you have anything special planned for March? I can’t believe it’s already here again lol I know how short this month is and yet I’m surprised every time.

Don’t panic there’s still plenty of time to read & finish February’s board. (I’m saying this to me, I need to hear this Lol)  

March Spotlight

#MarchMysteryMadness is a month long readathon focusing on you guessed it mysteries. Follow them over on Twitter @marchmysmadness for more info on the hosts and to chat. Here’s a link to their Goodreads Page

March Board

Let me know if you have any questions.

Will you be joining me? Remember to tag me and share. Sharing is caring.

I hope this next month brings you less stress & more books.

Book Blog, Book Recommendations, Book Talk

Stand Alone Fantasy Recommendations

Standalones for fantasy aren’t as uncommon as they have been in the past but there’s still too few of them. I understand the appeal of large sweeping fantasy novels. My favorite genre is fantasy so I am ALL for longer series but sometimes you just need a quick journey that isn’t Romance or Middle Grade.

This is not a comprehensive list and I wish it was longer but I don’t want to recommend books I haven’t read yet.

If you have any suggestions please leave them in the comments. I would really appreciate it!

Belle Révolte Linsey Miller

Belle Révolte

Emilie des Marais is more at home holding scalpels than embroidery needles and is desperate to escape her noble roots to serve her country as a physician. Annette Boucher, overlooked and overworked by her family, wants more from life than her humble beginnings and is desperate to be trained in magic. So when a strange noble girl offers Annette the chance of a lifetime, she accepts.

This is a YA standalone fantasy with a wlw romance. This is incredibly fast paced which could become confusing when learning about the magic of this world alongside the history of the rebels and kingdom. Other than that the characters were very dynamic and interesting especially side characters.We have a Trans character & another that is biromantic ace.

Stain by A.G. Howard


This high-fantasy YA gothic fairytale, inspired by Hans Christian Andersen’s The Princess and the Pea, takes place in an alternative medieval world split apart by magic. One kingdom lives in perpetual night while the other in daylight.

One of our Main Character’s Lyra is mute and allergic to the sun and she lives in the kingdom of daylight.  The complexities of the characters and the world make it hard to put this story down.

This story might be inspired by Andersen’s story but it’s also a love letter to fairytales in general. If you enjoyed the movie Ever After you will love this.  

Blanca & Roja by Anna Marie McLemore  

Blanca & Roja

This is YA magical realism that mostly centers on two sisters who could not look or be more different from each other. There’s a curse on the daughters of the family that will soon come to pass unless they do something about it.

We also follow two more characters who are also navigating difficulties of their own. Their stories intertwine with Blanca & Roja’s and interferes with the cursed magic that runs in the family.

The writing style fits the whole fairytale like way that this story unfurls. I loved all the characters! I was in a constant state of wanting to hug them all.      

A Universe of Wishes edited by Dhonielle Clayton

A Universe of Wishes: A We Need Diverse Books Anthology

This is my FAVORITE anthology I’ve ever read. I’m not seeing enough love for these diverse magical stories. It’s criminally underrated and I don’t understand why? I get short stories aren’t for everyone and I have those same hesitations but let me rest your fears because each story just gets better and better.

There are a few that I wish (& hope) could become more because they’re just THAT amazing but also THAT important. This is YA Fantasy and Science Fiction short story collection centering desires and wishes and what that looks like for a macabre of characters.

 I have a full review of each short story in my November wrap up.  

Descendant of the Crane by Joan He

Descendant of the Crane

This is Chinese inspired YA fantasy following a princess who inherits an unstable kingdom after her father’s untimely death.

When I picked this up a couple of years ago I didn’t know it was a standalone. I haven’t read it since so my memory of all the details is a bit fuzzy but I remember reading this in a day. I could not put it down.

It was action packed throughout plus there’s a mystery and the enemy to lovers trope.

Gods of Jade and Shadow by Silvia Moreno- Garcia

Gods of Jade and Shadow

This is Adult fantasy that involves Mayan gods, vengeance and a smart head strong main character.

The Jazz Age is in full swing, but Casiopea Tun is too busy cleaning the floors of her wealthy grandfather’s house to listen to any fast tunes. Nevertheless, she dreams of a life far from her dusty small town in southern Mexico. A life she can call her own.

In the company of the strangely alluring god and armed with her wits, Casiopea begins an adventure that will take her on a cross-country odyssey from the jungles of Yucatán to the bright lights of Mexico City—and deep into the darkness of the Mayan underworld.

This story was a delight from beginning to end and I had no idea what was going to happen next.

Have you read any of these? Do you have any recommendations for me? Let me know in the comments ❤