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Six of Crows: A Review

For those of you who have kept up with my blog, you know that I cannot resist a good young adult fantasy novel. Yes, I read other genres but the books I remember loving the most were young adult fantasy novels. After hearing all of the hype, I decided to purchase the duology of Six of Crows and Crooked Kingdom. Leigh Bardugo does an unbelievable job of creating a dynamic universe that is overflowing with colorfully unforgettable characters.

The minute we are introduced to Kaz Brekker, I already know he will quickly become the bad-ass character that you can’t help but love. He is the Danny Ocean to a similarly assembled band of thieves. Each of the six members of the team have a particular skill set, along with a complicated background story to explain how they found themselves here. Despite different back stories, they all found themselves agreeing to embark on an impossible heist with the highest stakes and potential for highest reward. Bardugo separates chapters by each character’s perspectives. These chapters help you gain a deeper understanding of each person’s past but also provides insight into what their motivations are during this journey. Apart from the story itself, which captivates the reader from the first page to the last, Bardugo supplies fluid prose without stutter. Her strong writing, in combination with the incredible plot, are what make Six of Crows a five-star must-read. 

I’m unsure if I want to jump directly into Crooked Kingdom (the second novel in the series) or take a break to read some other titles on my TBR. I’ll keep you guys posted.

XO

Currently reading…

I am so excited to announce that I have just started reading the famous Leigh Bardugo duology, Six of Crows! I know I’m super late on the whole bandwagon thing but — a good book is a good book whenever you choose to read it, at least in my opinion.

Life has been hectic so I haven’t been reading or writing as much as I used to. I want to change that and make an active effort to read and write more regularly. They always go hand in hand for me, if I’m not writing often it’s usually because I’m not reading as much as I should. I don’t want to make excuses but instead, challenge myself to take free moments to read. Y’all know how much I love a good YA fantasy so no better way to dive back in than with the famed Six of Crows duology. I’ve only heard good things and I’m excited to read it for myself.

My TBR is overflowing but if you have any suggestions for books to read. Comment below! I’d love to hear what you’ve been reading and why you liked it.

Happy Haitian Flag Day!

Today is Haitian Flag Day! I’m a proud first generation Haitian-American woman, raised by proud Haitian parents. My parents left Haiti, to come to America and make a better life for my sister and I. Despite the move, they have always kept the Haitian culture alive within us from the language (Kreyol) to the delicious cuisine.

As I’ve gotten older, I’ve been trying even harder to learn more about the culture since I will have my own family soon enough. I want to make sure that whether they are completely Haitian or mixed, that they have a complete understanding of their culture. From January 1 which is Haitian Independence Day to May 18 Haitian Flag Day, I want them to understand and appreciate the sacrifices their ancestors made for them.

With that, I’ve decided to announce my next book up for review: Roxane Gay’s Ayiti. Be sure to check back for the review.

Talking As Fast As I Can

I don’t think there is any better book that I could have followed Born a Crime with than an equally as stunning and refreshing memoir by Lauren Graham– actress, writer, producer and all around effortless talent. Talking as Fast as I Can was witty, quirky and full of laughs. I often find it difficult separating the person: Lauren Graham from her roles as Lorelai Gilmore and Sarah Braverman, two of my favorite television characters. I had to stop myself, at times, and remember she is not the roles she has played, they have impacted her to some extent but she continues where their stories end.

It was truly interesting to learn more about Lauren Graham. I never knew about her struggle to stardom. Apart from learning that she was in a relationship with her former cast brother, Peter Krause (Adam Braverman), I didn’t know much about her. I think my favorite part of the story was the firsthand details that Graham recounted from previous seasons of Gilmore Girl. She also included her personal journal entries during Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life. I think knowing how close of a relationship she built with her co-stars and crewmembers, returning for the final season was extremely emotional. It was incredible hearing about old memories and everyone being taken back into the nostalgia of the show the same way that audience members felt when they sat down to watch the long anticipated, A Year in the Life.

I remember growing up with Gilmore Girls and watching it constantly. At one point, when I realized that the last episode had aired, I refused to finish out the last season. I decided to wait until the inevitable tv movie aired to finally watch it all…only to learn that those months would turn to years. I binge-watched all the seasons on Netflix before the new season came on and had absolutely no regrets about it. The show honestly changed my life and made me aspire to have the Lorelai-Rory relationship with my future daughter. Their bond was unbreakable no matter what hiccups came along the way. I also agree 1000% with Lauren Graham about the final four words of the show being a cliffhanger! Is there going to be a Gilmore Girls Reloaded?! Or was this just a reminder that even if the show ends the Gilmore Girls live on in Stars Hollow!? Inquiring minds want to know.

~ The Valley of the Dolls ~

First, let’s start out with an R.I.P to Jacqueline Susann whom I had never heard of before a couple of months ago. I can confidently say that she is the author to one of my *new* favorite books, The Valley of the Dolls. This novel, originally published in 1966 was the biggest selling novel that year with over 31 million copies. Despite the novel being about 51 years old, the characters and storylines are still exceptionally relevant to modern day.

The novel follows three young women, Anne Welles, Jennifer North and Neely O’Hara who eventually become friends while pursuing their dreams of love, money and fame. Anne is a New England socialite desperate to leave behind her small town and find that all-consuming love and when she finally does, it threatens to crush her to pieces. She’s forced to make some life-altering decisions that beg her to question whether or not this is what she has truly wanted all along. Jennifer has only ever wanted to be loved for who she is, not her body. Finally, when happiness is within her grasp, she receives some devastating news that threatens to destroy everything she has. Lastly, Neely, young and eager for the chance at fame and fortune becomes an incredible talent and finds herself slipping down the rabbit hole of fame and forcing her to become someone she swore she wouldn’t. What I truly admire about Susann’s debut novel is that instead of each character’s life coming together and concluding in a perfect bow, things are still left open and unresolved. Not to give too much away but each character seems to ascertain what they spent their whole lives waiting for but not without a fair share of sacrifices and negative consequences.

The Valley of the Dolls is a timeless classic that I would definitely recommend to women’s fiction readers. I also think that readers in their mid-20s who were also fans of Gossip Girl, Pretty Little Liars and those stories will find interest in this 1960s tale of New York City fame. It’s glamorous and real and Susann really hit the mark on an lasting novel that I will proudly display on my shelf.