Bitesize Reviews Vol. 21

It’s been a short while since I’ve done one of these! Oh well, that’s what happens when you get in a bit of a slump! But here are 4 more of my mini reviews!

Enjoy! (and also check out my past library of Bitesize Reviews!)

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Serpent & Dove – Shelby Mahurin 4.8/5
YAAAAAAY! I waited to read this for so long (dunno why!) and I kept telling myself that I was gonna love it – and I was right! I LOVED this book so so so much!

Ok, so witches – check, witch hunter – check, enemies to lovers – CHECK! Sexually liberated woman – CHECK CHECK CHECK!

YASS! I’m so excited about this! I loved the story (and I can’t wait for the sequel) and I really enjoyed the writing. I found the characters to be absolutely amazing, I loved the dialogue.

I’m massively incoherent here because I’m super excited about this book and how much I enjoyed it and I’m excited for the sequel (I hated it).

But in all seriousness, I found the writing to have good pacing, amazing world-building, I felt like the characters were fully fleshed out, including the supporting cast. I enjoyed the twists (even if some were a touch predictable, but not all) and I really enjoyed the chapter structure.

Yes. More of this please.

Oh – also the book ended on a swear word, so of course I LOVED that! 😛

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The Crown’s Game – Evelyn Skye 2.8/5
Meh. I’m so gutted. I’m so so so glad that I’d read Evelyn Skye’s later books first (Circle of Shadows and Cloak of Night) because they were SO good and I reckon if I read this first I’d probably not bother and I’d have robbed myself of excellent books.

So, I read this book for my readathon. And it sounds AMAZING: a fantasy version of Tsarist Russia. Throw in some magic and a fight to the death because there can only be one wielder of magic and this sounds absolutely fantastic.

But here’s the problem – the actual book is soooo boring.
I feel like every scene had a mix of sod all happening, and then wishy-washy ‘action’ from our MC’s.

And also – a fight to the death? Nikolai and Vika don’t even fucking TRY to kill each other – ever! They dance and flirt and act on a CRUSH! As soon as they meet they crush HARD on each other – and don’t get me wrong, I’m happy that they acknowledged an attraction to each other – cos attraction is attraction. But this crush was strong enough for BOTH of them to disregard all their training and ambitions and goals…and their LIFE? WHAT!?

There’s zero tension – even in the crappy love triangle. There’s no love triangle, there’s a forced one that we’re supposed to believe but it’s just so unfounded.

I’m going to finish the next book because it’s a duology and I can’t help myself. Plus, I do wanna see if the author can save the story as her next duology was amazing. I’m probably going to start the next book very quickly – not because I’m dying to know what happens, but I know that if I don’t start it soon I’ll never get to it and I’ll forget the very little that happened.

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You’d Be Mine – Erin Hahn 3.2/5
This reminds me of a cuter, fluffier YA version of Daisy Jones and the Six. That’s kinda one of the reasons I wasn’t the biggest fan. I found DJATS full of unlikeable characters. That’s not the case here, You’d Be Mine was full of really sweet, likeable characters…but they just didn’t do it for me.

I know that the author tried to give these characters depth by giving them some dark/tragic backstory or whatever, but it all missed the mark for me. It just felt a lil….weak sauce.

The shame is, I was REALLY enjoying it up to about the halfway mark. There’s a point about halfway through that seems like a cute place for a ‘happy ending’ and honestly, I wish the book stopped there and it was a novella. Cos it seems better suited to that story type. The second half of the book dragged a fair bit and I found myself not really caring about the characters anymore because I was getting bored.

If this was perhaps my first YA contemporary I’d probably like it, or if I was younger. But meh.

I liked the country music aspect, but it was a lil predictable from the get-go. BUT it doesn’t really pretend to be anything else than what it is, so if you’re looking for cute fluff this might hit the spot for you.

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Conventionally Yours – Annabeth Albert 3.5/5
Well this was a cute lil surprise! It wasn’t perfect, but it was a nice lil romantic pick-up with some spicy scenes to boot!

So first off, I thought this was a YA story, it’s definitely an NA. Which I’m 100% ok with. I love NA! I want more of them. But regardless, this is an LGBT romance and it’s quite sweet.

I genuinely thought we’d get more on the convention itself and the fandom that the boys love, but it took a bit of a backseat, which was a bit confusing at times when it came up again.

However, I LOVE a road trip story and I wasn’t disappointed in that aspect –this was a GREAT roadtrip story! I loved it!

I enjoyed the romance throughout, but I had some issues with the pacing. This is an enemies to lovers story, which I am TRASH for, but the cold to immediately hot pacing was not realistic. Their romance went from non-existent to SUPER-existent in a matter of pages. For what felt like such a loooooong book at times I think there was plenty of time for a slow burn to be built to help believability, but instead we didn’t get that.

Speaking of the length…this felt like a looooong book at times. There were 3 times that I thought we were at the end…but we weren’t.

There’s also a lack of personality/development in supporting characters which I feel really damaged the book overall.

I got Red, White and Royal Blue vibes from this book, but where RWARB might be brand name, Conventionally Yours felt like store brand. There’s nothing wrong with that, obviously, but I felt like I connected more to RWARB with the similar themes between the two books.
Also, the rep was brilliant. We got Jewish and autistic MC’s and some non-binary rep.
Although I’m a lil disappointed in this book, I’m still super glad I read it and enjoyed it!

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And we have reached the end of another batch of bitesize reviews! I hope you enjoyed them and if you’re after more mini reviews feel free to check out others I’ve done!

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