Well, well, well… I succeeded in sticking more or less to my TBR finally!
Here are all my March reviews:
- Descendants of the Crane by Joan He
- The Wicked Deep by Shea Ernshaw
- The Culture Map by Erin Meyer
- Splintered by A.G Howard
- A River Enchanted by Rebecca Ross
Descendants of the Crane by Joan He
Themes: YA fantasy
My rating: 2,5/5
Princess Hesina of Yan has always been eager to shirk the responsibilities of the crown, but when her beloved father is murdered, she’s thrust into power, suddenly the queen of an unstable kingdom. Determined to find her father’s killer, Hesina does something desperate: she engages the aid of a soothsayer—a treasonous act, punishable by death… because in Yan, magic was outlawed centuries ago.
Using the information illicitly provided by the sooth, and uncertain if she can trust even her family, Hesina turns to Akira—a brilliant investigator who’s also a convicted criminal with secrets of his own. With the future of her kingdom at stake, can Hesina find justice for her father? Or will the cost be too high?
In this shimmering Chinese-inspired fantasy, debut author Joan He introduces a determined and vulnerable young heroine struggling to do right in a world brimming with deception.
Quick review: After months passed trying to finish it, this book was a cruel disappointment. In short, it had all the elements to be a good YA fantasy but was lost in too many subplots left unfinished…
The Wicked Deep by Shea Ernshaw
Themes: YA fantasy, romance, witches
My rating: 5/5
Where, two centuries ago, three sisters were sentenced to death for witchery. Stones were tied to their ankles and they were drowned in the deep waters surrounding the town.
Now, for a brief time each summer, the sisters return, stealing the bodies of three weak-hearted girls so that they may seek their revenge, luring boys into the harbor and pulling them under.
Like many locals, seventeen-year-old Penny Talbot has accepted the fate of the town. But this year, on the eve of the sisters’ return, a boy named Bo Carter arrives; unaware of the danger he has just stumbled into.
Mistrust and lies spread quickly through the salty, rain-soaked streets. The townspeople turn against one another. Penny and Bo suspect each other of hiding secrets. And death comes swiftly to those who cannot resist the call of the sisters.
But only Penny sees what others cannot. And she will be forced to choose: save Bo, or save herself.
Quick review: This was the perfect witchy standalone. The atmosphere was so perfect that it was as if I was with the characters.
The Culture Map by Erin Meyer
Themes: Nonfiction, culture, sociology
My rating: 5/5
Whether you work in a home office or abroad, business success in our ever more globalized and virtual world requires the skills to navigate through cultural differences and decode cultures foreign to your own. Renowned expert Erin Meyer is your guide through this subtle, sometimes treacherous terrain where people from starkly different backgrounds are expected to work harmoniously together.
When you have Americans who precede anything negative with three nice comments; French, Dutch, Israelis, and Germans who get straight to the point (“your presentation was simply awful”); Latin Americans and Asians who are steeped in hierarchy; Scandinavians who think the best boss is just one of the crowd—the result can be, well, sometimes interesting, even funny, but often disastrous.
Even with English as a global language, it’s easy to fall into cultural traps that endanger careers and sink deals when, say, a Brazilian manager tries to fathom how his Chinese suppliers really get things done, or an American team leader tries to get a handle on the intra-team dynamics between his Russian and Indian team members.
In The Culture Map, Erin Meyer provides a field-tested model for decoding how cultural differences impact international business. She combines a smart analytical framework with practical, actionable advice for succeeding in a global world.
Quick review: I don’t read a lot of nonfiction books but this one was worth the change! If you’re interested in different cultures and want to understand why we are behaving in certain ways, this book will give you a lot to reflect upon!
Splintered by A.G. Howard
Themes: YA fantasy, retelling
My rating: 3.5/5
Alyssa Gardner hears the whispers of bugs and flowers—precisely the affliction that landed her mother in a mental hospital years before. This family curse stretches back to her ancestor Alice Liddell, the real-life inspiration for Lewis Carroll’s Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland. Alyssa might be crazy, but she manages to keep it together. For now.
When her mother’s mental health takes a turn for the worse, Alyssa learns that what she thought was fiction is based in terrifying reality. The real Wonderland is a place far darker and more twisted than Lewis Carroll ever let on. There, Alyssa must pass a series of tests, including draining an ocean of Alice’s tears, waking the slumbering tea party, and subduing a vicious bandersnatch, to fix Alice’s mistakes and save her family. She must also decide whom to trust: Jeb, her gorgeous best friend and secret crush, or the sexy but suspicious Morpheus, her guide through Wonderland, who may have dark motives of his own.
Quick review: This was a good YA fantasy and I particularly enjoyed the atmosphere which was exactly the same as the one of Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland!
A River Enchanted by Rebecca Ross
Themes: Adult fantasy, mystery
My rating: 4/5
Jack Tamerlaine hasn’t stepped foot on Cadence in ten long years, content to study music at the mainland university. But when young girls start disappearing from the isle, Jack is summoned home to help find them. Enchantments run deep on Cadence: gossip is carried by the wind, plaid shawls can be as strong as armor, and the smallest cut of a knife can instill fathomless fear. The capricious spirits that rule the isle by fire, water, earth, and wind find mirth in the lives of the humans who call the land home. Adaira, heiress of the east and Jack’s childhood enemy, knows the spirits only answer to a bard’s music, and she hopes Jack can draw them forth by song, enticing them to return the missing girls.
As Jack and Adaira reluctantly work together, they find they make better allies than rivals as their partnership turns into something more. But with each passing song, it becomes apparent the trouble with the spirits is far more sinister than they first expected, and an older, darker secret about Cadence lurks beneath the surface, threatening to undo them all.
With unforgettable characters, a fast-paced plot, and compelling world building, A River Enchanted is a stirring story of duty, love, and the power of true partnership, and marks Rebecca Ross’s brilliant entry on the adult fantasy stage.
Quick review: First, if you think this book will be like Crescent City you’ll be disappointed! I recently discovered this book had been marketed as such which is unfortunate since it might receive bad reviews because of that. However, it was a very nice, slow read with a very Scottish atmosphere.
Still reading: A Darker Shade of Magic
I hope you had a great reading month!
Note: Most synopses are taken from Goodreads.
3 thoughts on “My March Reads”
I need to read The Wicked Deep. So glad you enjoyed it.
LikeLiked by 1 person
I hope you’ll enjoy it too!