Posts Categorized: 5 star books

Scarlett Epstein Hates It Here Blog Tour: Friendships in the Age of Social Media

Scarlett Epstein Hates It Here Blog Tour: Friendships in the Age of Social Media

This is the funniest YA book I’ve read in years. YEARS. I laughed so hard as I was reading it, because the outrageous observations and pull-no-punches dialogue fly fast and furiously like a Gilmore Girl high on pie and coffee. The book is so freaking smart, with some surprisingly poignant moments near the end–as well as perfectly in tune with teenagers and their weird, obsessive world. I’ve never felt more affection for the fanfic culture and pop culture references and girl friendships and boy crazies than I did reading this book–it’s like FANGIRL without the manic pixie dream kids, starring one of my favorite YA girls in recent years. Scarlett is a fucking heroine. She’s all the teenage girls who passionately love all the things people make fun of her for, and she hands it back to them with a smart slam. (One of my favorite moments in the book… Read more »

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Six of Crows: blog tour + giveaway

Six of Crows: blog tour + giveaway

When I heard that Leigh Bardugo was writing a spinoff duology set in the Grishaverse, I was hopping with excitement. Every reviewer at The Midnight Garden is a huge fan of the Grisha trilogy, but there’s always a fear that accompanies such news as well. The story of six outcasts trying to pull off a dangerous heist sounded fantastic–but could anything live up to the original stories? I’m so relieved–and thrilled–and astonished to find that Six of Crows surpasses its venerable origins. This book is superbly crafted from start to finish; its plotting deliberate, its world-building immersive, and its characterizations complex. From snow-covered fields to salty docks to the grandeur of the ice court, this world feels richly detailed , and I love the thrilling use of magic as well as the crazily inventive action sequences. Not to mention a fully diverse set of people and smart, witty dialogue! It’s… Read more »

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Uprooted: Review Discussion

Uprooted: Review Discussion

Uprooted is an adult fantasy well worth your time.  Layla and I both added it to our  “all time favorite” shelves and adore the dark, fairy tale explorations of this story. Please join us for this fun review discussion! If  you’re a fantasy reader and we haven’t convinced you to read this book by the end of our discussion we’ll eat our hats. Let’s dive in.     Kim: You know, it’s been several years, but I finally found a new book to add to my all-time favorites shelf.  This book is so enchanting and warm and lovely while also being darkly comedic and deliciously creepy. There is just a beautiful glow to this story which reads like an old school Eastern European fairy tale.  Layla: I mean, you know I feel precisely the same way. I can’t remember the last time I loved something quiiiite this much. I kept on desperately checking… Read more »

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The Mime Order: Review + Giveaway

The Mime Order: Review + Giveaway

Well, this one took me completely by surprise. I had enjoyed The Bone Season, but with reservations, considering how long it took me to really understand the incredible world Samantha Shannon has built for us. It took me very little time at all, however, to disappear into the pages of this second installment of the genre bending series. At once futuristic and Victorian, The Mime Order is a fantastical, dystopian, paranormal murder mystery, and I couldn’t get enough of it. This a lush and opulent storyworld, one that unfolds in intricate detail and rewards the reader for their patience. It is perfect for character readers and for anyone who would love a series that offers a “crash course” in the nuances of its world (like me! I am one of those people!). Reading this, and even though it is third person, I felt like I was walking with Paige through… Read more »

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My Heart and Other Black Holes: Review + Giveaway

My Heart and Other Black Holes: Review + Giveaway

This isn’t really a Kim Book.* Although, to be fair, if Kim Books usually involve incredibly heartfelt portrayals of our deepest humanity infused with humor and hope then perhaps I am about that also. Maybe. Every once in awhile a book comes along that crawls right into your heart and rends your ventricles. This is one of those. [Okay so there are moments where I’ll get a bit meta and personal. In ways that don’t really flow with the review but are important if you’d like an auxiliary/personal touch so I’m putting them behind spoiler brackets. When you see spoiler brackets it’s me being personal.] This is the story of Aysel (like uh-zell, rhymes with gazelle) who has longed to escape from the shadow of her father’s horrific crime for years. And of Roman who is living with an unimaginable grief. Both live trapped in the mire of isolation and… Read more »

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The Darkest Part of the Forest: Review

The Darkest Part of the Forest: Review

This book. I love this book. That is the review. That is all. But, really. I was fairly sure I would love this book going in just because it was by Holly Black and it was about faeries. Holly Black will always hold a special place in my heart because Tithe was one of the first YA books I got really, really into. It was the first book I read that had girls who weren’t always (or even often) likable, gay characters, and faeries that were actually like, well, faeries. Her faerie books ruined me for all other faerie books because they were so perfect and dark and good. The Darkest Part of the Forest did not disappoint. It was all the best parts of her writing—dark, beautiful world-building straight out of a fairytale, interesting and flawed characters, and a plot that blended the magical and the reality perfectly. It… Read more »

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The Iron Trial: Review

The Iron Trial: Review

This book. This book! I don’t even know what to say. That I loved it? That I can’t believe I have to wait a year to read the next one? All of the above. The Iron Trial is a perfect blend of fantasy, humor, and a great cast of characters. You’ll think you know the twist at the end, but you will be wrong. Oh, so wrong. This is a collaboration between Holly Black and Cassandra Clare, longtime friends and authors that I love. Holly Black has a penchant for the darker side of fantasy and writes the most interesting flawed characters. Cassandra Clare’s series The Mortal Instruments and The Infernal Devices is set in an immersive, original fantasy world and is filled with snarky humor. The Iron Trial is the product of the best parts of both their writing styles, that when put together creates something wholly original and… Read more »

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