25 Jun 2017

To Review or Not To Review an ARC Received A Year Later?

I am one of those bloggers that gets a physical ARC later its publication date.

Most of the time, I blame our local post office for sending it to my doorstep too late. I also keep visiting their office if a package for me has arrived and they would answer me with “There’s nothing yet.”. Then, when I receive the package, the date stamp says it arrived in their office a month ago. Cool, right? I don’t know what they do with their lives in that office but it has just a small space that I can even do the things they do. Our municipality is small too that I think I can manage the post office alone. Well, except for sending out the letters and other parcels, that would be the messenger’s job. But for the post master? Gosh. I’m sorry for this rant. Let’s get to what my post is about.

As I’ve mentioned, I get ARCs days later its publication date.
Sometimes, it took years for me to have it.

For me, getting an ARC just days later its publication date is still all right to read and give it a review. It’s still manageable to support the author of the book and give it a boost. Or before I receive the ARC (I know since I have an expected date to receive it), I promote the book on Twitter, Facebook or Instagram.

For ARCs I got that was due like a year or more, I would still read it. But, can I still give it a review? I mean, a review as an ARC? Or would I just read the finished copy?

I think most of you would suggest that I would read the finished copy and that I give my review of it instead of the ARC. However, the ARC was a gift. Like I won it from a Twitter giveaway. I also want to read the ARC because it’s the only physical copy I’ve got and the finished one is not available in our local bookstore yet or that I’m broke at the moment. Can I still give it a review?

I need enlightenment on this. I don’t want to lie to my blog’s readers that I reviewed a book letting them know that it was in its finished copy instead that it was an ARC and was published years ago. That’s also rude to the book community, right or what?

If you're curious, I thought of this while reading Signs Point to Yes by Sandy Hall. I received the ARC last year but just thought of reading it now. Still, it’s one year and eight months late.

Also, I have reviewed eARCs from Netgalley before that it was due to its publication date (months or so). But Netgalley is different, right?

This is frustrating.

What do you think? Have you encountered same dilemma as mine? Any proffers?

P.S. I changed my blog's name from Paper Boulevard to LITFAE. A post about the change will come soon! For the mean time, follow my blog with Bloglovin.

12 Jun 2017

Obsidian and Stars

Series: Ivory and Bone #2
Publication: June 13th 2017 by HarperTeen
Genre: Young Adult, Fantasy, Historical, Romance
Format: ARC, 359 pages
Add this on: Goodreads

      After surviving the chaotic battle that erupted after Lo and the Bosha clan attacked, now Mya is looking ahead to her future with Kol. All the things that once felt so uncertain are finally falling into place. But the same night as Kol and Mya’s betrothal announcement, Mya’s brother Chev reveals his plan to marry his youngest sister Lees to his friend Morsk.
     The only way to avoid this terrible turn of events, Morsk informs Mya when he corners her later, is for Mya to take Lees’ place and marry him herself.
      Refusing to marry anyone other than her beloved, and in an effort to protect her sister, Mya runs away to a secret island with Lees. And though it seems like the safest place to hide until things back home blow over, Mya soon realizes she’s been followed. Lurking deep in the recesses of this dangerous place are rivals from Mya’s past whose thirst for revenge exceeds all reason.
      With the lives of her loved ones on the line, Mya must make a move before the enemies of her past become the undoing of her future.

The definition of the word ‘understanding’ on every dictionary I find was not as I was expecting and so as I understood the meaning of it. There are different explanations on how a person understands simple or complex things and it gives different interpretation from another person.  And this… is how I misunderstood Mya in Ivory and Bone.

As I’ve mentioned on my review of Ivory and Bone, I hated her for being obstinate and I understood for she has her reasons. My understanding on her part was shallow. But as I read the first chapter of Obsidian and Stars, I cried. I wanted to kneel and apologize that I have wrongly judge her.  In this sequel of the series Ivory and Bone, Mya thought me much better than Kol – on how to be a good leader and at the same time a sister and a lover. She has let me understood on why you need to hold back. Mya is a brilliant character, a good influence for being a brave heart.

Obsidian and Stars talks about the reluctance to forgive, to trust, and to accept. I have learned a lot of lessons other than that but I can’t quite recall. Also, there are points of the story that I want to know more because I felt they were cliff hangers but I told myself that I would wait for it on the last book. Regardless, it is the right book to share to your grandchildren someday. Well, just let them realize that the killings were part of it since this is set in prehistoric.

Lyrical; depictions from difficult hunting scenes to speechless grief – Julie Eshbaugh has done a of surpassing excellence on writing Obsidian and Stars. Unlike Ivory and Bone, it started epic!

Source: Author - Thank you! · I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.
This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

23 May 2017

Ivory and Bone

Series: Ivory and Bone #1
Publication: June 7th 2016 by HarperTeen
Genre: Young Adult, Fantasy, Historical, Romance
Format: ebook, 400 pages
Add this on: Goodreads

      The only life seventeen-year-old Kol knows is hunting at the foot of the Great Ice with his brothers. But food is becoming scarce, and without another clan to align with, Kol, his family, and their entire group are facing an uncertain future.
      Traveling from the south, Mya and her family arrive at Kol’s camp with a trail of hurt and loss behind them, and hope for a new beginning. When Kol meets Mya, her strength, independence, and beauty instantly captivate him, igniting a desire for much more than survival.
      Then on a hunt, Kol makes a grave mistake that jeopardizes the relationship that he and Mya have only just started to build. Mya was guarded to begin with—and for good reason—but no apology or gesture is enough for her to forgive him. Soon after, another clan arrives on their shores. And when Mya spots Lo, a daughter of this new clan, her anger intensifies, adding to the already simmering tension between families. After befriending Lo, Kol learns of a dark history between Lo and Mya that is rooted in the tangle of their pasts.
     When violence erupts, Kol is forced to choose between fighting alongside Mya or trusting Lo’s claims. And when things quickly turn deadly, it becomes clear that this was a war that one of them had been planning all along.

I told myself that I would stop reading Ivory and Bone if it is still boring until 30%. But I found myself reading until its half because I was waiting. I was waiting… for Lo. The plot picked up when she came into the story. Kol and Mya’s was just plain boring. I know there is something wrong with Mya towards Kol, and I have guessed it right at the end why because it was obvious - Ivory and Bone spoils itself. Warning: The next sentence may spoil you and lose your interest. Highlight at your own risk. Also, I was hurt that I have encountered Kol killing a mammoth down, but I understand since this is set in prehistoric.

Despite the weak points, Ivory and Bone is a moving-read towards family responsibilities. Kol is a great clan-leader in training who pays close attention and is exquisite. He is also a great brother and a son. All I can say of Mya is that she’s obstinate. I may have hated her for that but then have understood her side for she has her reasons, not just stubborn-because-I-like-it-to-be stubborn.

The plot was not that compelling but I still have enjoyed reading it since Kol TELLS. YOU. EVERYTHING. BEAUTIFULLY. His perspective was well done written.

If you love saber tooth cats running (towards you), spear throwing and bee hunting and Pride and Prejudice, you will assuredly be delighted reading Ivory and Bone.

9 May 2017

Review: The Bone Season

PublicationBloomsbury USA
Genre: Fantasy
Format: Hardcover, 432 pages
Add this on: Goodreads

In 2059 Scion London, Paige Mahoney works for one of the most powerful crime-lords in the city, scanning people's minds with her clairvoyant ability. It isn't that she particularly wants to be part of a gang- it's just one of the only options for a clairvoyant seeking even a measure of protection in a country where simply being born with an ability like Paige's carries a sentence of imprisonment and death.

Then she's caught, and finds herself transported to Oxford- a city that has been kept hidden for two centuries under the control of the otherworldly Rephaim- to be trained to fight creatures that enter through rifts between worlds. 

Sorry for the long description... as you might gather the story is rather difficult to convey succinctly- there's a lot to the world of the clairvoyants. The book even starts off with several pages of diagrams detailing the different types of clairvoyants- which includes everything from those who can walk in others minds, to those who can see the future. This book does focus strongly on the world-building- and sometimes does that by info-dumping, which slowed down the story, especially at the beginning.

The world is a lot of familiar elements combined in  really interesting way. It's a paranormal fantasy with a fairly strong dystopian edge. I also quite enjoyed the long-term power squablling and history of the Rephaim. The relationship that humans have with them tends toward a "the enemy of my enemy is also kind of my enemy, why are we surrounded by enemies how did this happen" kind of feeling. Because they're generally somewhat awful, but are also stopping something even worse from happening.

There's also a pretty big cast of characters. While they're written dynamically enough, something about the story kept me from really connecting to anyone- even Paige, the narrator. was a character that only sometimes resonated with me. I'm planning on reading the next book, and hoping I'll connect more with the characters this time. For me, The Bone Season was driven more by the plot and world than by the characters- which was alright, but it would be great for it to be both.

Overall this was quite an interesting first novel, and I'm curious to see where Samantha Shannon plans on taking what's planned to be a seven book series... it kind of doesn't feel like the set up for that many books, but we'll see.
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