Review: Nancy Drew and the Palace of Wisdom

Title: Nancy Drew and the Palace of Wisdom
Author: Kelly Thompson, Jenn St-Onge
Genre: Graphic Novel, Young Adult
Publisher: Dynamite Entertainment
Source: Publisher via NetGalley
Format: Ebook
Release Date: April 2, 2019
Rating: ★★★★★

goodreads-badge-add-plus-71eae69ca0307d077df66a58ec068898

Goodreads Synopsis:

Nancy Drew is seventeen and good at everything…ESPECIALLY solving crimes. But her totally-in-control-and-obviously-running-perfectly-smooth-(but-not-really) life hits a snag when a mysterious message drags her back to the hometown she left behind. There she’ll have to find out which of her friends are still her friends, which are enemies, and who exactly is trying to kill her…and (hopefully) stop them before they succeed. 
KELLY THOMPSON (Hawkeye, Star Wars, Rogue & Gambit) and JENN ST-ONGE (Giant Days, The Misfits) team up to present an all-new modern spin on a classic mystery icon!

Review:

I’ve loved Nancy Drew since I was a kid. I’m always looking for new adaptations, including graphic novels. This was a fun new story.

The setting of the story was a little difficult to get used to at first. Nancy grew up in Bayport, and she moved to River Heights with her father when she was a teen. In this story, she is called back to Bayport when she receives a threatening letter referring to her mother’s death. Her old friends Bess and George, as well as Frank and Joe Hardy, are in Bayport, and they join her on her new mystery.

There was some diversity added to the original Nancy Drew cast. Nancy meets Pete, a black boy, who joins her and her friends on their mystery. George is gay, and is dating Danica, who is also black.

Bess has always been one of my favourite characters and she was hilarious in this story. She finally started a romance with Joe, which I’ve been waiting to see for a long time. Bess also knew some surprising information which helped them solve the mystery!

I hope this series continues. There was a huge cliffhanger at the end, so I can’t wait to see what happens next!

Thank you Dynamite Entertainment for providing a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

What to read next:

Nancy Drew and the Hardy Boys: The Big Lie by Anthony Del Col

Have you read Nancy Drew and the Palace of Wisdom? What did you think of it?

First Lines Friday – April 19

This is a weekly meme hosted by Wandering Words, where you give the first few lines of a book to hook your readers before introducing the book.

Here are my first lines:

“The calming echo of a holy chant filtered down from the sanctuary and into the cellars. It was late afternoon, just before Vespers, a time where psalms to the gods were given up in an effortless chorus.”

Do you recognize these first lines?

And the book is… Wicked Saints (Something Dark and Holy #1) by Emily A. Duncan.

goodreads-badge-add-plus-71eae69ca0307d077df66a58ec068898-2.png

Goodreads synopsis:

A girl who can speak to gods must save her people without destroying herself.

A prince in danger must decide who to trust.

A boy with a monstrous secret waits in the wings. 

Together, they must assassinate the king and stop the war.

In a centuries-long war where beauty and brutality meet, their three paths entwine in a shadowy world of spilled blood and mysterious saints, where a forbidden romance threatens to tip the scales between dark and light. Wicked Saints is the thrilling start to Emily A. Duncan’s devastatingly Gothic Something Dark and Holy trilogy..

My review of Wicked Saints can be found here.

Have you read Wicked Saints? What did you think of it?

Review: The Temptation of Gracie

Title: The Temptation of Gracie
Author: Santa Montefiore
Genre: Historical Fiction
Publisher: Simon and Schuster Canada
Source: Publisher via NetGalley
Format: Ebook
Release Date: April 16, 2019
Rating: ★★★★★

goodreads-badge-add-plus-71eae69ca0307d077df66a58ec068898

Goodreads Synopsis:

Never give up on your dreams, no matter how long you hold on to them . . . 

Gracie Burton is a grandmother, living quietly in Devon. She has rarely left the village over the past forty years. Her daughter, Carina, is immensely high-powered with her own fast-paced business in London. She has very little time for her 17-year-old daughter, Anastasia, away at boarding school, and even less time for her aging mother. In many ways, the three of them barely know each other. Then Gracie stumbles upon an advertisement for a weeklong cookery course in the heart of the Tuscan countryside. She cannot resist and ploughs her life savings into the trip. Carina and Anastasia accompany her. They have no idea why Gracie has been drawn to this venture. They have no sense of her past; she has never spoken about it. They have no idea that Gracie is harbouring the secret of an extraordinary life that preceded them . . . 

Review:

This is a great book to start off the summer. It is set in beautiful Tuscany. I feel like I have been there after reading this book!

I loved the mystery of this story. Gracie lived a secret life in her youth, which she has always kept from her family. Her mysterious past slowly unraveled throughout the story. There were huge revelations in the last couple of chapters, so even when you think it’s finished, there is more to learn.

There was a lot of symmetry in this story. Gracie’s life in Italy is slightly reflected in the experiences her granddaughter has on their trip. I love it when books are mirrored in this way.

The only part that I found a little strange was the way the story sometimes returned to the town where Gracie lives in Devon. The story only returned there a couple of times, and I didn’t see any connection to the main plot about Gracie. This may have been changed in the final edition.

I really enjoyed this new historical novel!

Thank you Simon and Schuster Canada for providing a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

What to read next:

Juliet’s Answer by Glenn Dixon

Songs of Love and War by Santa Montefiore

Have you read The Temptation of Gracie? What did you think of it?

TBR Thursday – April 18

TBR Thursday is a weekly meme hosted by Kimberly Faye Reads, where you post a title from your shelf or e-reader and find out what others think about it.

My pick this week is Moxie by Jennifer Mathieu.

Goodreads Synopsis:

Moxie girls fight back!

Vivian Carter is fed up. Fed up with her small-town Texas high school that thinks the football team can do no wrong. Fed up with sexist dress codes and hallway harassment. But most of all, Viv Carter is fed up with always following the rules.

Viv’s mom was a punk rock Riot Grrrl in the ’90s, so now Viv takes a page from her mother’s past and creates a feminist zine that she distributes anonymously to her classmates. She’s just blowing off steam, but other girls respond. Pretty soon Viv is forging friendships with other young women across the divides of cliques and popularity rankings, and she realizes that what she has started is nothing short of a girl revolution.

Have you read this book? What did you think of it?

Review: Cold as Ice (Whatever After #6)

Title: Cold as Ice (Whatever After #6)
Author: Sarah Mlynowski
Genre: Middle Grade, Fantasy
Publisher: Scholastic Press
Source: Borrowed from a friend
Format: Paperback
Release Date: November 25, 2014
Rating: ★★★★★

goodreads-badge-add-plus-71eae69ca0307d077df66a58ec068898

Goodreads Synopsis:

Brrrrrrrr. This fairy tale is FREEZING!

Even though my brother and I had decided to stay away from the magic mirror, our puppy had other plans — he bounded right in. What choice did we have but to go in after him? 

When we land in a winter wonderland, we realize we must be in the story of The Snow Queen. And this fairy tale is nothing like the movie. This Snow Queen is super-mean, and she turns our dog into an ice sculpture!

To get home we’ll have to: 
– Defrost our furry friend
– Ride a very chatty reindeer
– Learn to ice-skate
– Escape from a band of robbers

And if we’re not careful . . . we could end up frozen ourselves!

Review:

I really love this series! This chilly story was a great book.

I’ve never read the tale of the Snow Queen, so this story was new to me. I’ve watched Frozen, but the fairytales that Abby and Jonah enter are the original tales, not the Disney versions. This story is a dark tale, so Abby and Jonah had to try to turn it into a happy ending.

There were some big surprises at the end of this story. Abby and Jonah’s secret of the mirror was almost discovered by their parents, but at the last minute their minds were wiped. Another important memory was altered as well, so I have no idea how it will play out in the rest of the series!

As always, I can’t wait to continue the rest of this series. It is a great collection of fairytale retellings.

What to read next:

Beauty Queen (Whatever After #7) by Sarah Mlynowski

Flunked (Fairy Tale Reform School #1) by Jen Calonita

Have you read Cold as Ice? What did you think of it?

‘Waiting on’ Wednesday – April 17

This is a weekly meme hosted by Breaking the Spine. In this post we highlight a book that’s highly anticipated.

The book that I’m waiting on this Wednesday is Red, White & Royal Blue by Casey McQuiston. The release date is May 14, 2019.

Goodreads Synopsis:

A big-hearted romantic comedy in which First Son Alex falls in love with Prince Henry of Wales after an incident of international proportions forces them to pretend to be best friends…

First Son Alex Claremont-Diaz is the closest thing to a prince this side of the Atlantic. With his intrepid sister and the Veep’s genius granddaughter, they’re the White House Trio, a beautiful millennial marketing strategy for his mother, President Ellen Claremont. International socialite duties do have downsides—namely, when photos of a confrontation with his longtime nemesis Prince Henry at a royal wedding leak to the tabloids and threaten American/British relations.

The plan for damage control: staging a fake friendship between the First Son and the Prince. Alex is busy enough handling his mother’s bloodthirsty opponents and his own political ambitions without an uptight royal slowing him down. But beneath Henry’s Prince Charming veneer, there’s a soft-hearted eccentric with a dry sense of humor and more than one ghost haunting him. 

As President Claremont kicks off her reelection bid, Alex finds himself hurtling into a secret relationship with Henry that could derail the campaign and upend two nations. And Henry throws everything into question for Alex, an impulsive, charming guy who thought he knew everything: What is worth the sacrifice? How do you do all the good you can do? And, most importantly, how will history remember you?

What books are you waiting on this week?

Top 5 Wednesday – Favourite SFF Books

This meme is hosted by Lainey from Thoughts on Tomes. The Goodreads Group for Top 5 Wednesday can be found here.

This week’s prompt is Favourite SFF (Science Fiction/Fantasy) Booktubers, but since I don’t watch a lot of book tubers, I chose to list my
Favourite SFF Books instead. Here’s my list:

1. Illuminae by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff

2. Cinder by Marissa Meyer

3. A Darker Shade of Magic by V.E. Schwab

4. Ash Princess by Laura Sebastian

5. This Mortal Coil by Emily Suvada

What are your favourite SFF books?