Happy Heir of Fire Release Day!!!

It’s here…September 2nd has finally arrived and it’s officially HEIR OF FIRE RELEASE DAY! It’s been 371 days since Crown of Midnight was released! That’s 534,240 minutes you guys! Seriously! That’s 32,054,400 seconds! Regardless of how you’ve been counting the time since the last book in the Throne of Glass series was released, if you’re anything like me its felt like FOREVER! Trust me when I say this guys…YOU WANT THIS BOOK! I finished it last week and I can confirm it is THE.BEST! Plus, the cover is just as amazing as the rest of the series and all four of these beauties are going to look seriously gorgeous all together on my bookshelf!

cover image source: goodreads

cover image source: goodreads

Today is the day, the day in which we can all rejoice and thank the heavens above that Heir of Fire is now out in the world! If you haven’t already, be sure to go out and grab your copy today! Also be sure to check out the non-spoiler review I posted yesterday if you want to get even more amped up for today!

I’m on vacation right now, so it’ll be pretty quiet around these parts for the rest of the week! But I’ll be back and better than ever the week of September 8th with a re-cap of the Sarah J. Maas book signing I’m attending at Wellesley Books on Friday night! In the meantime stay tuned to my Instagram for Disney World and Sarah J. Maas photos! Not sure which is more amazing!

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Book Review: Heir of Fire by Sarah J. Maas

source: goodreads

source: goodreads

Heir of Fire by Sarah J. Maas
Publication Date: 9/2/14 by Bloomsbury
Pages: 565 | Format: Paperback ARC
Purchase this book

Lost and broken, Celaena Sardothien’s only thought is to avenge the savage death of her dearest friend: as the King of Adarlan’s Assassin, she is bound to serve this tyrant, but he will pay for what he did. Any hope Celaena has of destroying the king lies in answers to be found in Wendlyn. Sacrificing his future, Chaol, the Captain of the King’s Guard, has sent Celaena there to protect her, but her darkest demons lay in that same place. If she can overcome them, she will be Adarlan’s biggest threat – and his own toughest enemy. 

While Celaena learns of her true destiny, and the eyes of Erilea are on Wendlyn, a brutal and beastly force is preparing to take to the skies. Will Celaena find the strength not only to win her own battles, but to fight a war that could pit her loyalties to her own people against those she has grown to love?

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Many thanks to Jamie at The Perpetual Page-Turner for allowing me to borrow her Heir of Fire ARC! Her fabulous generosity in no way affected my review.

I suppose I’ll start this review off by saying what a lot of bloggers have said when sharing their thoughts on Sarah J. Maas’ third book in the Throne of Glass series. WHERE do I begin? No really…where? This book clocks in at nearly 600 pages and I’m here to say that each and every one of the pages, each paragraph, each sentence, each word…is perfection.

The opening pages of Heir of Fire pick up right where Crown of Midnight left off and we don’t miss a beat. Celaena is off to Wendlyn under Chaol’s suggestion as a way to find the answers she is looking for. What we don’t know is just how epic of a journey and transformation that is about to take place in all of our beloved characters lives. To me, this whole story was about transformation and about choices. Each character we are introduced to undergo some sort of transformation, and has made choices that lead to consequences they may or may not be ready to face. It was fascinating to see the arc of each character develop so magically from beginning to end.

click for source

click for source

Celaena’s whole life has been consumed with the burning desire to enact revenge, to make those responsible for her pain and the pain of those she loves suffer at her hand. She doesn’t care about anything else and is haunted by the endless betrayal and loss she has experienced her whole life. She refers to her rage as a “monster under her skin” and this is such a perfect analogy. It lives in her and she always knows it’s there. Sarah J. Maas does an unbelievable job in getting us to the dark heart of Celaena, in learning what motivates her. We get so much more back story to Celaena’s childhood and begin to understand what exactly it was that happened to her so long ago.

As part of her journey, Celaena is introduced to Rowan, a fae who allows her to look deep inside of herself  and helps her to realize what she must to in order to fulfill her destiny. Their relationship was my very favorite aspect of this book – it’s multi layered, unexpected and transformative. Rowan allows her to explore the intricacies of her heart and her pain, as a way tap into her true power that allows her to heal and move forward. I’m not going to give any details as to the nature of his relationship with Celaena, but I will say that his friendship is what truly carried her to the edge of darkness and then through it. Their relationship transcends definition and it was such a cornerstone of this book for me.

click for source

click for source

Which brings me to my next point, Sarah J. Maas really knows how to write powerful friendships. Much of this book focuses on the strength one can draw from a person who believes in them and offers their unwavering support. They’ve all been through so much in their own way and need at least one person they can look to in times of need. You can tell that Maas has some amazing friendships to draw experience and inspiration from.

Another new character we meet is the hardcore witch Manon Blackbeak, heir to the Blackbeak witch clan. Maas introduces us to a whole new wicked race in the realm of this story and I must say I am totally intrigued! You can tell that most of the narrative surrounding this character is a whole lot of world building and setting the stage for something amazing. I just know it. Manon is amazingly evil, but something tells me behind those iron teeth and steely glare is some sort of humanity. I cannot wait to see how her story develops in future books.

click for source

click for source

This review is already THE.LONGEST and I haven’t even talked about Dorian and the gang back at Rifthold. In this book, Dorian is figuring out what his power means and also starts to understand his father’s rule for what it truly is. A power-hungry and blood thirsty campaign to rule all of Erilea. We also learn that Chaol is left questioning everything he thought to be true, and seems so much more weary and guarded which totally broke my heart. For as much as Dorian was discovering who he truly is, Chaol was left trying to figure out what he ever was and will be. Don’t even get me started on Aedion! Another new character who ended up being one of my favorites! He is SO much more than I first assumed and I was so invested in how his past shaped him and what his motivations are. His focus on righting the past wrongs, as well as the ruthless and cunning way in which he must do so is captivating.

Seriously, HUGE kudos to Maas for writing some of the most complex, fully-formed characters  and locations I have read in a while. There are so many layers to this story and the way in which they all come together is something to be admired. The images I used in this review actually come from Sarah J. Maas’ Throne of Glass Pinterest board in which she shares images that act as inspiration for each book. The images I selected were marked as “Book 3” and I can see so much of the story I read in them.

click for source

click for source

So…more than a thousand words later and all I have left to say is that this book was everything I was hoping it would be and more. Epic is the best word I can use to describe it, but others that come to mind are captivating, heart-wrenching, exhilarating and mesmerizing! There was so much plot and character development in this book and I cannot wait to see what the next installment in this legendary series brings us. By the end of Heir of Fire each character is presented with or forced into a fate we never could have seen coming. You should definitely have some tissues handy because the last 100 pages are intense and heart-breaking! In the best possible way of course! Many thanks to Sarah J. Maas for doing it again, Heir of Fire is most certainly one of my new favorite books ever.

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If my review has you itching for more Heir of Fire goodness, please be sure to check out the Maas Thirteen and their Thirteen Days of Ash and Fire. It’s an epic Heir of Fire blog tour hosted by Alexa from Alexa Loves Books, Rachel from Hello Chelly, Judith from Paper Riot, Katie from The Polished Page-Turners and Jaz from Fiction In Fiction In Fiction. These amazing ladies will have fantastic posts celebrating the release of Heir of Fire, as well as a pretty spectacular giveaway! To keep up with posts use hashtags #HOF13Tour and #MaasThirteen on Twitter.

Tour Schedule

August 25 – Jaz @ Fiction in Fiction in Fiction
August 26 – Katie @ Polished Page-Turners
August 27 – Kelly @ Belle of the Literati
August 28 – Elena @ Novel Sounds
August 29 – Nicole @ The Quiet Concert
September 1 – Gillian @ Writer of Wrongs
September 2 – Judith @ Paperiot
September 3 – Melanie @ The Daily Prophecy
September 4 – Magan @ Rather Be Reading
September 5 – Andi @ Andi’s ABCs
September 8 – Gina @ Behind the Pages
September 9 – Rachel @ Hello Chelly
September 10 – Alexa @ Alexa Loves Books

Fangirl Friday: The Happy Edition

Is it me or did this week just fly by? I for one am thrilled that it’s Friday so I’m just going to go ahead and make that reason #1 why I’m so happy. I was wracking my brain for a Fangirl Friday topic for today and then it dawned on me that I should just write about all the things that are putting a smile on my face lately.

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Not sure if I’ve mentioned this before (wink-wink) but I’m a total Disney fangirl! I love everything about it…the rides, the atmosphere, the restaurants. I’m totally sucked in by the Disney magic. So, I’m super psyched that my husband and I just booked a trip for next month to visit “the world” with my sister and her kids. Last time I went with my niece and nephews they were itty-bitty but now they’re all grown up (ages 9, 12 and 14) and so pumped to go on ALL the rides with Auntie and Uncle! My husband and I are hard-core when it comes to touring Disney, so we’re already working on itineraries for each day and planning out our best strategy. Hope my sis and her kids are ready for this! As you can see from the photo below…we take our Disney pretty seriously. Enough so that we memorize where all the on-ride cameras are. Yeah…we don’t mess around!

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source: sneaky iPhone pic of Disney ride camera

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You guys…I live in the boonies! Like, the middle of nowhere! So it’s very rare that I’m able to go to book signings or author meet and greets since they normally fall on week nights. It takes me about 3 hours to make the drive down to Boston from where I live, so getting down after work for a 6pm or 7pm event is literally impossible. But, in an apparent twist of fate, I will be in the very town on the very same night that Sarah J. Maas will be there for her Heir of Fire book tour! It’s like it was meant to be! This will be my very first time meeting the author of a book that I am such a huge fan of, and I’m so psyched it’s my very favorite author! The icing on the cake is that A.C. Gaughen (author of the amazing Scarlet and Lady Thief) will be there as a special guest and I’ll get to meet her as well! It’s basically going to be the greatest night ever!

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Source: Bloomsbury | Click for dates & locations

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So much love to Gail over at Ticket to Anywhere for generously loaning me her ARC of Isla and the Happily Ever After, and to Andi and Sarah for taking good care of it and passing it along to me! Isla is one of my most highly anticipated titles of the year, and I feel so fortunate to have such wonderful blogging buddies who are willing to share the love! I cannot wait to get this beauty in my hot little hands today and I know what I’m reading this weekend. If you haven’t already, be sure to sign up for the Happily Ever After readalong starting next Thursday. Just click on the gorgeous image below for more info.

source: Meg @ Cuddlebuggery

source: Meg @ Cuddlebuggery

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I’m a little over two months into my blogging career and I cannot tell you how excited I am over how far I’ve come already! I’m close to hitting 400 followers on Twitter, over 125 friends on Goodreads and two people shy of 100 followers on Instagram!! It’s just THE.BEST feeling to know I have so many supporters out there. I’ve met some fantastic people and made some pretty amazing friends through this experience, and I just want you ALL to know how much I love you guys! I cannot wait to see where this experience continues to take me!

Thank You

So, there you have it! Four incredible things that are making me HAPPY this Friday! What are you happy or thankful for today? Please feel free to share in comments…I’d love to hear all about it! 

 

 

 

Fangirl Friday: An Open (Fan) Letter to Sarah J. Maas

Each week I dedicate this post to something that I’m currently “fangirling” over. The past few weeks my posts have been about books, art and clothing, but today I’m taking the time to talk to you about an author I am a HUGE fangirl of! Just to make it clear, The Oxford Dictionary defines fangirl as “an obsessive female fan (usually of movies, comic books, or science fiction).” I think it’s safe to say that I am pretty obsessive about this author, because, to be honest I stalk her Twitter on the regular and I binge read her first two books in no time. I was pretty late to the party as I read the first book nearly two years after it was published, but once I read Throne of Glass I knew I was done for. So, with out further ado, here is my open fan letter to the one and only Sarah J. Mass

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epic quote provided by Sarah J. Maas / epic photo provided by me

Dear Sarah,

What can I say that hasn’t already been said? I could flatter you with kind words about your truly epic gift of writing, congratulate you on having the pluck and determination to start your first novel while still in high school, or perhaps even subtly remind you that you look a LOT like Jennifer Lawrence. But, you’ve heard all this before, haven’t you Sarah? At what point does all this fangirling and swooning get old? Something tells me that your response would be a resounding, “NEVER!”

You see, I get the distinct feeling that you’re just as much of a fangirl as I am! I mean…how else could you dig deep and discover the stories that make us all freak the hell out? It’s like your brain is permanently set on EPIC and I don’t know how you manage to contain it on a daily basis. Do you walk around with some badass soundtrack playing in your mind? Do you think in Caleana-isms? Do you dream in Technicolor and surround sound? Who else could take the inspriation from the classic fairytale of Cinderalla and turn it into a story about a young female assassin? You’ll never know how happy it made me when I read this quote:

“Celaena kinda just walked right into my head the moment I had the idea for the series. Though I think she was also the product of my love for Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Kill Bill, Han Solo from Star Wars, and Disney princesses, as well as my desire to write/read a book where the heroine got to do all the “fun” things that boys usually get to do: kick butt, kill monsters, save the world.”
Source: Writers and Artists Yearbook

I want to thank you for the stories you’ve given us. Thank you for Caleana, Chaol, Dorian and Nehemia, some of the most complex, yet relatable fantasy characters I’ve ever encountered. Thank you for demonstrating to readers (of all ages) that a woman can be strong, vicious and brave while still remaining tender, apprehensive and vulnerable. Thank you giving us the story of a heroine that fights for what is right but doesn’t always make the best decisions. Thank you for creating a romance that is at once so tender, loving and authentic, yet so vulnerable, complicated and heart-breaking. Thank you for creating Erilea, a literary world that is so fascinating and distinctive that it’s a character unto itself. Thank you for being so amazing with your fans. Thank you for taking the time to respond to our tweets. Thank you for laughing with us, celebrating with us, crying with us and raging with us. Finally, thanks for simply being a great person and an amazing author. Girl…you rock.

xoxo –

Sarah

PS – I hope your move to the East Coast (aka the BEST coast) goes well tomorrow!! Welcome home!

Fangirl Friday – Fashion & Literature

For this third installment of Fangirl Friday I decided to draw on some inspiration from one of my very first buddies in this amazing book blogging community! Did you guys happen to see Andi’s ABCs fabulous manicure? Seriously, it’s pretty much the greatest thing ever. So totally perfect for her trip to BEA down in NYC last week! Many thanks to Andi from Andi’s ABCs for the initial inspiration for this Fangirl Friday topic and for sharing this great photo she took of her epic bookworm nails!

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I was so inspired by her creativity that I started to poke around the web to see if I could find other garments and accessories that were inspired by literature. Naturally, I fell down the internet rabbit hole, as one does, and I found some really great stuff! Check it out!!

Even though I haven’t read the book, I absolutely love the Clockwork Princess quote on this tee-shirt from neenacreates on Etsy. If this quote is any indication of Cassandra Clare‘s writing I definitely need to add these books to my TBR list! Plus this shirt looks super soft and comfy.

lifeis a book

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I’ve seen these Toms Dictionary Quote shoes a few times now and every time I stumble upon them I SWEAR I’m going to buy them at my next pay-day. I think it’s high time I take the plunge and purchase these shoes!

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When I was younger I was obsessed with all things Anne of Green Gables. Oh, who am I kidding?! I still am! So much so that when I found this necklace on Etsy I actually squealed in delight. Who wouldn’t want a gorgeous locket that held a quote from one of the most iconic scenes between Anne and Gilbert (my ultimate book boyfriend…FOREVER). I love this necklace so much I’m seriously considering buying it!

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Finally, from the moment I saw this tote bag on the Throne of Glass Facebook page, I just knew I HAD to have it! I mean, as a Sarah J. Maas fangirl I nearly passed out when I saw this tote! It’s everything you’d want in a tote…perfect size, great quality and it loudly proclaims your love for all things Throne of Glass. Unfortunately, you could only get this tote at BEA or win a limited giveaway…neither of which I was able to accomplish! BUT, my girl Andi lived up to her title as one of my bookish fairy godmothers and is generously giving me the one she got at BEA. THANK YOU ANDI!!!

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So there you have it, four of my favorite book inspired fashion items. Like I said, I found a TON of great stuff online and wish I had a money tree in my back yard so I could buy them all. Do you have any items in your closet inspired by your favorite book?

 

Waiting on…Heir of Fire by Sarah J. Maas

It seems as though one of the most anticipated events at BEA this year is the Sarah J. Maas signing event. She’ll be signing ARCs of her upcoming release Heir of Fire, the third book in the Throne of Glass series and my Twitter feed is all a buzz with people planning to grab a spot in line for one of this year’s hottest releases. If I were going to BEA I would most definitely be one of those people scrambling to line up early since I binge read the first two books and am currently obsessed with all things Sarah J. Maas! If you love an epic fantasy involving a strong female lead character then you definitely need to check this series out. Heir of Fire releases September 2nd so you have plenty of time to get caught up.

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HEIR OF FIRE by Sarah J. Maas
Expected publication: September 2nd 2014 by Bloomsbury USA Childrens
Pages: 565

Pre-Order this book

Publisher Summary

Lost and broken, Celaena Sardothien’s only thought is to avenge the savage death of her dearest friend: as the King of Adarlan’s Assassin, she is bound to serve this tyrant, but he will pay for what he did. Any hope Celaena has of destroying the king lies in answers to be found in Wendlyn. Sacrificing his future, Chaol, the Captain of the King’s Guard, has sent Celaena there to protect her, but her darkest demons lay in that same place. If she can overcome them, she will be Adarlan’s biggest threat – and his own toughest enemy.

While Celaena learns of her true destiny, and the eyes of Erilea are on Wendlyn, a brutal and beastly force is preparing to take to the skies. Will Celaena find the strength not only to win her own battles, but to fight a war that could pit her loyalties to her own people against those she has grown to love?

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by Jill at Breaking The Spine.