Cover Wars: The Singular & Extraordinary Tale of Mirror & Goliath vs A Madness So Discreet

Cover Wars is a weekly showdown of two beautiful covers. The winner, as voted by you, goes on to face a new cover, and wins bragging rights. This is basically a fun way to discuss what we like in covers.

This week's battle is called "attack of the books with really long titles" which is somewhat unfair to the second book, henceforth referred to as Discreet. In any case, beautiful covers again!

So pretty! Both of them are dramatic and magical. A Madness so Discreet is beautiful and creepy, like check out the hand grabbing her leg! And to be very honest, the fact that she is literally being pulled through wood scares me because there's that sharp piece of wood that could potentially stab her and... let's end that thought. The challenger, known as "Singular" (my typing is far from on point today), is seriously one of my fav combos, gold and midnight blue. It screams whimsical. Which cover do you think should win Cover Wars?


What do you think?

Review: This Shattered World

Author: Amie Kaufman , Meagan Spooner
Date of Publication: December 23, 2014
Pages: 390
Source: Library

The second installment in the epic Starbound trilogy introduces a new pair of star-crossed lovers on two sides of a bloody war.

Jubilee Chase and Flynn Cormac should never have met.

Lee is captain of the forces sent to Avon to crush the terraformed planet's rebellious colonists, but she has her own reasons for hating the insurgents.

Rebellion is in Flynn's blood. Terraforming corporations make their fortune by recruiting colonists to make the inhospitable planets livable, with the promise of a better life for their children. But they never fulfilled their promise on Avon, and decades later, Flynn is leading the rebellion.

Desperate for any advantage in a bloody and unrelentingly war, Flynn does the only thing that makes sense when he and Lee cross paths: he returns to base with her as prisoner. But as his fellow rebels prepare to execute this tough-talking girl with nerves of steel, Flynn makes another choice that will change him forever. He and Lee escape the rebel base together, caught between two sides of a senseless war.

I’ve been sitting on this review for a while. It’s one of those times when you come out of loving a book and feel at a loss for words to express yourself. Even so, this may not be anything new but it is how I feel and it’s long overdue that this books get credit on The Sirenic Codex. 

There are loads of sci-fi reads, the genre is so huge that sometimes one can get lost trying to find something that fits their needs. Meagan Spooner and Amie Kaufman’s work in this series is quickly becoming the place I go to get my sci-fi fix. 

In This Shattered World, we are introduced to a small planet on the edge of the universe, Avon. Avon has basically failed terraforming and is left in a stalemate as a wetland. Despite it’s perceived failures the natives are fierce and loyal to their planet and it’s sovereignty. 

Enter Flynn, brother of the former rebel leader, and stone-cold cold Captain Lee. What a duo. Initially out to get each other only to end up enlightened to other side of the story because there is always another side.

In These Broken Stars, I loved the romantic history the characters had, in this one I really appreciated the familial history. While the first book was more about survival in isolation this one was about war and the effects it has on a person's sanity, family, friends and home. 

This book also built further into the universe created in This Broken Stars. Not only was it set in a different planet but the characters stories of an ancient Earth and the colonization of the human race in different planets were a fascinating addition especially with the aspect of ethnic diversity that was done very well. For instance, Flynn was of Irish ancestry while Jubilee came form an asian background. 

Overall, this was a very easy book to get engulfed in. It’s action packed, intelligent and contains two very relatable and courageous protagonists. As if those aren’t good enough on their own, Spooner and Kaufman have weaved a full story into this book, independent of the previous and forthcoming instalments. Definitely, recommended. 



What do you think?

Review: Red Queen

Author: Victoria Aveyard
Date of Publication: February 10 2015
Pages: 320
Source: ARC won in a giveaway!

The poverty stricken Reds are commoners, living under the rule of the Silvers, elite warriors with god-like powers.

To Mare Barrow, a 17-year-old Red girl from The Stilts, it looks like nothing will ever change.

Mare finds herself working in the Silver Palace, at the centre of
those she hates the most. She quickly discovers that, despite her red blood, she possesses a deadly power of her own. One that threatens to destroy Silver control.

But power is a dangerous game. And in this world divided by blood, who will win?


I confess: Red Queen's premise is a lot like Red Rising's, and that's partially what drew me to the book. I also wonder if that impacted my experience reading Red Queen, because while I saw some reviews where people were gushing like crazy about Red Queen, all I could think was that it was good, but as far as this premise/story goes, I liked the way Red Rising handled it more. Red Rising had some more complexity and it was a lot more unpredictable, for me.

I'll also make it clear that I loved the ending of Red Queen. I thought the ending was so much fun to read, and it also resolved another little issue I had. I kind of felt really uncomfortable with something while reading, and I had certain nagging suspicions. This took away from my enjoyments of some parts of the story, but it was only because I kind of guessed a plot twist really early on. Again, once this storyline ended, I felt much happier with the story. 

Red Queen was such a fun story. I love the super cool powers and it's really the kind of fantasy, a la Shadow and Bone, that is fun. I didn't find a character I liked as much as the Darkling though, although I thought Red Queen's plot was more enjoyable, just because it had a lot more happening because of the length of the story and it satisfies more than any of Bardugo's books. 

I feel pretty shitty for constantly comparing books to Red Queen, but I think it's really because while I liked a lot of the elements of the story, it wasn't a story I fell for. It's still one I enjoyed and I think I will like the sequels even more. I guessed a few of the plot twists and for that it felt a little typical, which was not what I was expecting from a book with this kind of hype. I'm hoping that I'll have a harder time guessing what happens in the sequel, once the author doesn't have to do so much set up. 

The characters didn't stand out too much. I liked Mare because she was tough but a really good person who wanted to do good. Her relationship with her family was pretty great. I wish there was more of that. I thought the princes were a lot of fun, and for some reason I always love brothers in YA. I liked their interactions best. 

I think the most fun part of the story has to be the plot and the super powers. The Silvers are pretty horrible. Their mantra is 'strength and power', and they're really entitled assholes. But, they were also incredibly fascinating. I loved learning about their powers and the conflicts between different houses. I loved training and battles, and I am so into more of Mare kicking ass! The plot was also paced really well and kept me interested the entire time. Some plans seemed a little too easy, so I wouldn't have minded some more details and I'm really looking forward to the theme that everything is 'gray'. 

Also, I really like Cal. Cal could be that one character I really like that makes this entire story click. I don't know if he is yet, but he could be. Cal is fascinating because he is so attuned to his duty. He will be king someday, and that means he always has to consider the needs of the kingdom before his own. He refuses to sacrifice the strength of his kingdom, and he is willing to do whatever it takes to win. He's righteous in a way, and terrible in others. In any case, I don't like all his decisions, but I like who he is, if that makes sense. I've always been fascinated by power and its limitations, and that was Cal's storyline. 

Bah, this review has been all over the place! I guess I'm a little rusty. In any case, I think Red Queen was good, but not as good as I hoped. Still, there were a lot of really fun things that make me super excited for the sequel!



What do you think?