Review: Soundless by Richelle Mead

Monday, October 16, 2017


In a village without sound…

For as long as Fei can remember, no one in her village has been able to hear. Rocky terrain and frequent avalanches make it impossible to leave the village, so Fei and her people are at the mercy of a zipline that carries food up the treacherous cliffs from Beiguo, a mysterious faraway kingdom. 

When villagers begin to lose their sight, deliveries from the zipline shrink. Many go hungry. Fei and all the people she loves are plunged into crisis, with nothing to look forward to but darkness and starvation.

One girl hears a call to action…

Until one night, Fei is awoken by a searing noise. Sound becomes her weapon.

She sets out to uncover what’s happened to her and to fight the dangers threatening her village. A handsome miner with a revolutionary spirit accompanies Fei on her quest, bringing with him new risks and the possibility of romance. They embark on a majestic journey from the peak of their jagged mountain village to the valley of Beiguo, where a startling truth will change their lives forever…

And unlocks a power that will save her people.

  • I didn't read this book, I listened to it, and the audio book reader was on point. I've always had an issue keeping up with names, particularly when books are set it other countries so I thought the book would be easier to follow if it was read to me, and I was right. 
  •  The book had a slow build, and while I get the feeling reading it might have been an issue for me, listening to that slow build was great.
  • I must say, I was unprepared for the... fantastical ending. It was nice. 
  • With out any spoilers, I enjoyed reading about what was discovered "in the towns". That's all I can say. 


  • Although I liked the "fantastical" ending, I thought the discovery was a bit rushed. Even though the book was a good size, I would have been fine with an additional two or three chapters for a better and less forced explanation. 

This is the type of book I would suggest to someone who is just beginning to discover Fantasy novels. What might feel boring and slightly unfulfilling to some, moves at just the right pace for others. As someone who is a bigger fan of Urban Fantasy than "Hardcore Fantasy", I was a fan of Soundless. 
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Review: Beast by Brie Spangler

Monday, October 2, 2017


Tall, meaty, muscle-bound, and hairier than most throw rugs, Dylan doesn’t look like your average fifteen-year-old, so, naturally, high school has not been kind to him. To make matters worse, on the day his school bans hats (his preferred camouflage), Dylan goes up on his roof only to fall and wake up in the hospital with a broken leg—and a mandate to attend group therapy for self-harmers.

Dylan vows to say nothing and zones out at therapy—until he meets Jamie. She’s funny, smart, and so stunning, even his womanizing best friend, JP, would be jealous. She’s also the first person to ever call Dylan out on his self-pitying and superficiality. As Jamie’s humanity and wisdom begin to rub off on Dylan, they become more than just friends. But there is something Dylan doesn’t know about Jamie, something she shared with the group the day he wasn’t listening. Something that shouldn’t change a thing. She is who she’s always been—an amazing photographer and devoted friend, who also happens to be transgender. But will Dylan see it that way?

I'm a sucker for the concept of "it's what's on the inside that matters, not what's on the outside". This book is a modern day Beauty and the Beast. Dylan is huge and hairy AKA he's the big, hair, scary beast. Jamie is our Belle and she is trans. How freaking great is that!!

  • I love that Jamie was transgender. As a non-transgender person I can't speak as to how accurate Jamie was as a character the same way I might be able to with an African American character, but I loved her. She was tough, honest, straight forward, and she wasn't taking any crap from JP or Dylan. 
  • I liked the dynamic between JP and Dylan. It would have been easy for Brie Spangler to make Dylan the evil villain of his high school with his large muscle, but that wasn't quite what happened. JP was "that kid". He had money, he was popular, beloved by adults, people fought with each other to enter his orbit. He was also a bully, but instead of harassing kids himself, like any self respecting bully would, he sent Dylan to do it. The crazy thing was, Dylan hated being the enforcer of their duo. Like I said, and interesting dynamic. 
  • I like that this book didn't have a neat and tidy ending. As with real life, sometimes you don't know what the next day will bring. You don't know if you'll be able to forgive and forget, you don't know that your friendships will last, but you go to sleep, wake up the next day, and hope for the best.
  • Small spoiler..................................There is a moment when Dylan and Jamie end up naked and in bed. Sex can be hard enough as it is, even when you're an adult, but when you're a trans girl and you still have male genitalia I imagine it can be even more difficult. I really appreciate the way Bri Spangler didn't eliminate this slightly uncomfortable moment for Dylan from the book. That's all I say about it. Read it yourself.   
  • My only issue with the book was with the mom. I didn't like her. She was a worrier as many parents are, but something about her felt fake and over done.
Read this book. That's honestly all there is to say. 
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