Mini-reviews: The Map That Leads to You + Roar

The Map That Leads to You by by J.P. Monninger
pub 6/13/17 by St. Martin's Press
Contemporary Romance
Received ARC from pub for review
The Map that Leads to You is a book that left me feeling extremely torn by the end. Because the parts of the book I loved–I really, really loved and that parts I disliked–I really, really disliked. So what worked and didn't work for me? The former: the premise, the travel and the friendships. Heather has just graduated from college and is traveling around Europe with two of her best friends. It's their last big hurrah before responsibility and adulthood approaches. While on the trip, Heather meets Jack, a fellow traveler who's a bit of a mystery but charming and sparks something in her that's completely unexpected. I love stories like this about chance connections, fate and taking risks. The author does an incredible job with those themes and with the imagery of each new city they travelled to. It made me want to hop on a plane and drag my best friends along with me to see these sights. But what didn't work was the romance and oftentimes, the dialogue. The spark between Heather and Jack was initially promising but as the book went on, it got dragged down by way too much angst and situations that made it feel like they were going around in circles. But the conversations grated on my nerves too. They came across pretentious and it felt like the author was trying too hard to produce "intellectual" banter. I much preferred the conversations between Heather and her two best friends, which were more natural in comparison. For a book that's meant to be a romance, I felt far more invested in the friends and traveling instead of the actual relationship.

Do I recommend? Yes and no. I think if the plot had been more streamlined and the writing wasn't trying so hard, I would totally recommend it. But as it is, I'd only check it out if you're intrigued by the premise.

pub 6/13/17 by Tor Teen
Young Adult - Fantasy
Received copy from pub for review
I'm a huge fan of Cora Carmack's Rusk University series so when I found out she was coming out with a young adult fantasy series, I was excited to see what she'd come up with. And let me tell you, I had pretty high expectations and she managed to exceed them! It's such a unique world and she did a fantastic job of world-building without sacrificing the pace of the plot or developing her characters.
Aurora Pavan is from one of the oldest Stormling families in Pavan, and next in line to be queen. But she has a secret‐Aurora has no magic, the very thing needed to protect her people. To save the crown, Aurora's mother arranges for her to marry a powerful Stormling prince but the more Aurora learns of his secrets, the more she realizes his dark intentions for them all.  It's while spying on him that she meets a group of storm hunters, those born without magic but possess it now and thus give her the chance to take her future into her own hands. Like I said, the world is great. The idea of a land ruled by violent magical storms and individuals with the power to chase them was executed extremely well. I immediately loved Aurora's tenacity to discover the truth, her intelligence and her desire to more than just a pawn. There's magic, adventure and of course, romance. Let's just say that one storm hunter in particular caught Aurora's (and my) eyes and I was all about that. If you love a mix of fantasy and romance, this is one book you have to read.

Do I recommend? So much yes. I can't wait for the second book!

1 comment

  1. Really curious about Roar, especially after knowing you loved it! Definitely on my list of books to check out eventually.


with love,