Review: Twisted Fairy Tales: The Ninjabread Man

Title: Twisted Fairy Tales: The Ninjabread Man
Author: Stewart Ross, Chris Jevons (illustrator)
Genre: Children’s
Publisher: Arcturus Publishing
Source: Publisher via NetGalley
Format: Ebook
Release Date: February 15, 2020
Rating: ★★★★★

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Goodreads Synopsis:

Long ago, in ancient Japan, two ninja warriors had everything they wanted in life, except for a child. So they decided to bake one! Out of the oven leaped a speedy, sneaky, and brave Ninjabread Man… who went on to cause absolute chaos! This hilarious tale will be sure to thrill readers aged 6+.

Review:

This story is a great twist on the tale of the Gingerbread Man.

In this story, a man and woman want a child of their own. They speak to a fox, who gives them a recipe to make a ninjabread man. However, they don’t use the right amount of ingredients, so he is a mischievous ninjabread man who keeps running away from them.

I loved the Japanese setting in this story. It added some diversity to the story. It also put a twist on the story, because one of the ingredients for the ninjabread man was wasabi. That was an important part that gave it a surprise ending.

The illustrations were very cute. The ninjabread man was adorable, but he had a sneaky look on his face. He was quite a troublemaker.

I really enjoyed this story!

Thank you Arcturus Publishing for providing a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

What to read next:

Twisted Fairy Tales: Little Rude Riding Hood by Jo Franklin

Twisted Fairy Tales: Snow White and the Seven Robots by Stewart Ross

Have you read Twisted Fairy Tales: The Ninjabread Man? What did you think of it?

Bookish Friday – Friendship Goals

This is a weekly meme hosted by Laurie Reads and Niffler Reads. Every Friday, they post a list of bookish things based on the prompt they provided. The prompts for Feb to May can be found here.

This week’s prompt is Friendship Goals. Here’s my list:

Harry and Ron

Archie and Jughead

Mia and Lilly

Ronan and Gansey

Nancy, Bess, and George

Sherlock and Watson

Carmen, Lena, Tibby, and Bridget

Cinder, Scarlet, Cress, and Winter

(All book covers from Goodreads)

Did you make a list for Bookish Friday?

Review: Of Curses and Kisses (St. Rosetta's Academy #1)

Title: Of Curses and Kisses (St. Rosetta’s Academy #1)
Author: Sandhya Menon
Genre: Young Adult, Romance
Publisher: Simon and Schuster Canada
Source: Publisher via NetGalley
Format: Ebook
Release Date: February 18, 2020
Rating: ★★★★★

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Goodreads Synopsis:

From the New York Times bestselling author of When Dimple Met Rishi comes the first novel in a brand-new series set at an elite international boarding school, that’s a contemporary spin on Beauty and the Beast.

Will the princess save the beast?

For Princess Jaya Rao, nothing is more important than family. When the loathsome Emerson clan steps up their centuries-old feud to target Jaya’s little sister, nothing will keep Jaya from exacting her revenge. Then Jaya finds out she’ll be attending the same elite boarding school as Grey Emerson, and it feels like the opportunity of a lifetime. She knows what she must do: Make Grey fall in love with her and break his heart. But much to Jaya’s annoyance, Grey’s brooding demeanor and lupine blue eyes have drawn her in. There’s simply no way she and her sworn enemy could find their fairy-tale ending…right?

His Lordship Grey Emerson is a misanthrope. Thanks to an ancient curse by a Rao matriarch, Grey knows he’s doomed once he turns eighteen. Sequestered away in the mountains at St. Rosetta’s International Academy, he’s lived an isolated existence—until Jaya Rao bursts into his life, but he can’t shake the feeling that she’s hiding something. Something that might just have to do with the rose-shaped ruby pendant around her neck…

As the stars conspire to keep them apart, Jaya and Grey grapple with questions of love, loyalty, and whether it’s possible to write your own happy ending.

Review:

This new Sandhya Menon book definitely lived up to my expectations!

This story is a retelling of Beauty and the Beast. Jaya is a princess, who chooses to attend the same boarding school where her family’s rival goes. She thinks that he leaked some photos of her sister to the press, so she wants to make him fall in love with her so she can break his heart and get her revenge. At the same time, Grey lives with a family curse. His father ignores him because Grey’s mother died in childbirth and he is destined to be the end of their aristocratic line. When he sees Jaya’s ruby rose necklace, he suspects that it is the jewel that sparked the rivalry between their families. If it is, that means that when the last piece of the ruby falls off the necklace, his life will be over.

I loved the way this story borrowed from the tale of Beauty and the Beast, but it wasn’t an exact copy of the story. The imagery of the rose really reminded me of the original tale. It was a clever way to include the rose as a necklace that slowly drops its jewels. There was also the added drama of Jaya’s and Grey’s families being rivals, which really increased the tension of the story. Another great dramatic addition to the story was that Jaya was getting revenge on Grey to protect her sister, rather than the way she wanted to protect her father in other adaptations of the tale.

I really loved this book! It was a great retelling!

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

What to read next:

When Dimple Met Rishi (Dimple and Rishi #1) by Sandhya Menon

Royals (Royals #1) by Rachel Hawkins

Have you read Of Curses and Kisses? What did you think of it?

TBR Thursday – February 20

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 Frankly in Love (Frankly in Love #1) by David Yoon.

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Goodreads Synopsis:

High school senior Frank Li is a Limbo–his term for Korean-American kids who find themselves caught between their parents’ traditional expectations and their own Southern California upbringing. His parents have one rule when it comes to romance–“Date Korean”–which proves complicated when Frank falls for Brit Means, who is smart, beautiful–and white. Fellow Limbo Joy Song is in a similar predicament, and so they make a pact: they’ll pretend to date each other in order to gain their freedom. Frank thinks it’s the perfect plan, but in the end, Frank and Joy’s fake-dating maneuver leaves him wondering if he ever really understood love–or himself–at all.

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

Review: Gretel

Title: Gretel
Author: Ben Meares
Genre: Horror, Fantasy, Graphic Novel
Publisher: Zenescope
Source: Publisher via NetGalley
Format: Ebook
Release Date: February 4, 2020
Rating: ★★★★

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Goodreads Synopsis:

Gretel’s story has been more nightmare than fairy tale ever since the tragic events of her childhood involving her brother and a maniacal witch. These events have left her cursed with a life that will span centuries.

After consuming the heart of a psychic witch, Gretel has been gifted the power of premonition. But when she has a psychic vision foretelling the end of the world, Gretel must open old wounds if she wants to try and prevent it from coming true.

Review:

This story tells an alternate story of Hansel and Gretel, where Gretel became a witch.

I really enjoyed the plot of this story. Gretel searches for the original witch, and meets many others along the way. It also tells the story of what she has been doing for the hundreds of years since her brother and her were captured by the witch.

This was quite a gruesome and graphic comic. The witches in this story eat human hearts. They eat children’s hearts to stay young, and they eat the hearts of other witches to gain their powers. These parts had realistic illustrations, so they were graphic.

This was a great horror graphic novel.

Thank you Diamond Book Distributors for providing a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

What to read next:

Robyn Hood: Outlaw by Howard Mackie

Have you read Gretel? What did you think of it?

'Waiting on' Wednesday – February 19

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 The Honey-Don’t List by Christina Lauren. The expected publication date is March 24, 2020.

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Goodreads Synopsis:

Carey Douglas has worked for home remodeling and design gurus Melissa and Rusty Tripp for nearly a decade. A country girl at heart, Carey started in their first store at sixteen, and—more than anyone would suspect—has helped them build an empire. With a new show and a book about to launch, the Tripps are on the verge of superstardom. There’s only one problem: America’s favorite couple can’t stand each other.

James McCann, MIT graduate and engineering genius, was originally hired as a structural engineer, but the job isn’t all he thought it’d be. The last straw? Both he and Carey must go on book tour with the Tripps and keep the wheels from falling off the proverbial bus.

Unfortunately, neither of them is in any position to quit. Carey needs health insurance, and James has been promised the role of a lifetime if he can just keep the couple on track for a few more weeks. While road-tripping with the Tripps up the West Coast, Carey and James vow to work together to keep their bosses’ secrets hidden, and their own jobs secure. But if they stop playing along—and start playing for keeps—they may have the chance to build something beautiful together…

From the “hilariously zany and heartfelt” (Booklist) Christina Lauren comes a romantic comedy that proves if it’s broke, you might as well fix it.

What books are you waiting on this week?

Review: Mermaid School

Title: Mermaid School
Author: Lucy Courtenay, Sheena Dempsey (illustrator)
Genre: Children’s
Publisher: Amulet Books
Source: Publisher via NetGalley
Format: Ebook
Release Date: February 18, 2020
Rating: ★★★★

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Goodreads Synopsis:

A sweet and sparkling chapter book series about finding your place and believing in yourself!

It’s Marnie Blue’s first day at Lady Sealia Foam’s Mermaid School, and she’s terrified. What if she can’t make friends? What if she has to ride a seahorse? And what if the teachers assume she’s just like her Aunt Christabel, a famous singer who was a troublemaker growing up. Even though Marnie is sweet and tries her best to fit in, a mermaid named Orla seems intent on getting her in trouble. But when Orla finds herself in danger, Marnie has to swim to the rescue! Filled with fabulous, fishy fun, Mermaid School is the start of a sparkly new chapter-book series that’s sure to enchant young readers.

Review:

This is the first book in a new series about a mermaid school.

Marnie is nervous about starting at the Mermaid School. She has both her mother’s and her aunt’s reputations behind her. Her mother was a star student who always did her homework, but her aunt was a trouble maker. The teachers immediately judge her when she enters the school, and they assume she will be like her aunt when she gets in trouble on the first day. Marnie makes a few friends and an enemy right away. However, Marnie is a very nice mermaid, so she helped the mean girl, Orla, when her family was in trouble.

This story showed a side of starting school which isn’t told in stories often. I’ve seen and heard of children being compared to their older siblings or family members, just based on their relation to one another. That isn’t fair, because everyone is different, and often siblings are very different from one another.

There was an interesting piece of Marnie’s aunt’s past life revealed at the end, so I’m curious to see what happens in the next book!

Thank you Amulet Books for providing a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

What to read next:

Fairy Mom and Me (Fairy Mom and Me #1) by Sophie Kinsella, Marta Kissi (illustrator)

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

Have you read Mermaid School? What did you think of it?