Reviews

Heartfelt: A review – No Man of Woman Born by Ana Mardoll

Note: I received this book free of charge through NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

My brief personal summary: This book is a collection of short fairy tales featuring trans and nonbinary characters.

The book as a whole. 4/5

I really enjoyed it. The author’s note was so touching and I think the hopes for this book were realized. Diversity in all types of fiction is really necessary so that we might all find ourselves and our potential in the stories we enjoy. The one thing at the beginning that threw me off was that these really are short stories/fairy tales. These are not long novels with in-depth stories and though that is made very obvious in the description this sometimes made me feel left hanging. Now, to the stories themselves

Story One: Tangled Nets 3/5

Wren was an interesting character. Xhie had obviously been through a lot with xer sister and there was a lot going on, but I just didn’t feel attached to xer.  There was some cool world exploration, but right as I wanted to know more about xer the story was over. I think my biggest thing was there was some information about the other dragons and what happened to the white dragon that while interesting would have been better used as time to explore Wren more.

Story Two: King’s Favor 3/5

I liked this one better than Tangled Nets. There’s world building, but there’s also some exploration of Caran that I enjoyed about why nee was doing what nee was doing and why nee was specifically chosen. While I felt a bit of attachment to nee I wanted more. Caran got this amazing opportunity at the end and then it was over.

Story Three: His Father’s Son 5/5

This story was all I wanted! Nocien was the first character I really felt attached to in the book and he was glorious. We got his backstory through him remembering everything in a lot more detail than I feel like the previous short stories and I was hooked. Then, there was action, a great amount of it that really hit you and then the ending! I felt like I got the complete story.

Story Four: Daughter of Kings 4/5

This one got me right in the feels. Finndis is lovely, but there’s a past that is a bit painful. We get just enough of her history to really enjoy her victory. What a great story.

Story Five: Early to Rise 3/5

The most obvious retelling of a fairy tale in the book. An interesting retelling of Sleeping Beauty. It was short, but I enjoyed it well enough

Story Six: No man of Woman Born 4/5

Innes asks some great questions about prophesies that I admit I never thought about. I love that all the details don’t seem to slow any of these characters down. I think it really speaks to most of us who have dreamed of being heroes during at least one point in our lives. What a great story to give people faith in themselves.

Story Seven: The Wish-Giver 4/5

Short, but so heartwarming.

You can purchase No Man of Woman Born by Ana Mardoll here.

Reviews

The First Review-Wolfsong by TJ Klune. Amazing!

I bought this book from Dreamspinner Press on a whim thinking it’d be an okay werewolf story which I could enjoy over winter break. Well, I was in for quite the surprise, because this book wasn’t just okay it was so wonderful, so real, and worth every penny (honestly worth more in my opinion). While I’m not a huge fan of the star rating system if that’s your thing I’d say definitely 4/5. If you want a more in-depth review continue below!

My Personal Summary: Ox started life with a father that didn’t believe in him and a mother struggling to make things work.  It didn’t help when his father left and he was alone with just his mother. Things weren’t looking too good until he met a boy. A boy that just clung to him like glue and that’s when a beautiful friendship was born. But, while things start looking up a murder came to town and destroyed what happiness Ox had created. The boy left, running after the monster, and leaving Ox behind. It took three years for the boy to return and when he did he wanted to pick up where they left off. But, three years is a long time to wait and Ox has done what he needed to do to survive. Will they ever be able to reconnect or are they to be forever apart?

Now, I know the summary might not be superb, but don’t let deter you! This book as I mentioned is wonderful! This is a paranormal novel centered on werewolves and TJ Klune does a marvelous job.

Let start off with the characters. Ox, wonderful beautiful Ox. I must admit when I read Dreamspinner’s summary I wondered if maybe this character wasn’t very bright, but no no no. Ox is the lifeblood of this story and it didn’t take long for me to absolutely fall in love with him. TJ Klune does a really fantastic job of giving us insight and understanding into Ox’s life and why he is the way he is. I don’t want to give too much away so let’s talk about Gordo, the witch.  We don’t know a lot about him, but he has a soft spot for Ox and definitely has a major beef with the werewolves. What I enjoy most about this character is that there’s obviously a past there, and a painful one. Klune is giving us a very real person with Gordo and I can’t wait to read more about him (he’s the focus of book 2, Ravensong.) Now the werewolves.

The werewolves while your typically moon-pulled creatures have their own unique ritual that really gives them an enjoyable new spin that sets them apart from werewolves in other stories. The werewolves aren’t the only thing given a spin in this novel and you can be prepared for some fun twists in the book that keep you on your toes.

Now, one of the goals of this blog is to talk about diversity within books and I’d say this book definitely has some basic diversity in it. Many characters in the book are gay which is expected given the nature of the book and there is a tiny bit of racial diversity, but nothing too major.

While there might not be a ton of diversity in this book I still couldn’t recommend it enough as a great piece of paranormal fiction. Be prepared to fall in love, cry, and scream (both with joy and other feelings) as you read this story. So, go my bookworms and read it! You can get it here.