Monday, April 13, 2015

Mini Reviews: A School for Unusual Girls by Kathleen Baldwin and Mortal Gods by Kendare Blake

From Goodreads: It’s 1814. Napoleon is exiled on Elba. Europe is in shambles. Britain is at war on four fronts. And Stranje House, a School for Unusual Girls, has become one of Regency England’s dark little secrets. The daughters of the beau monde who don't fit high society’s constrictive mold are banished to Stranje House to be reformed into marriageable young ladies. Or so their parents think. In truth, Headmistress Emma Stranje, the original unusual girl, has plans for the young ladies - plans that entangle the girls in the dangerous world of spies, diplomacy, and war. After accidentally setting her father’s stables on fire while performing a scientific experiment, Miss Georgiana Fitzwilliam is sent to Stranje House. But Georgie has no intention of being turned into a simpering, pudding-headed, marriageable miss. She plans to escape as soon as possible - until she meets Lord Sebastian Wyatt. Thrust together in a desperate mission to invent a new invisible ink for the English war effort, Georgie and Sebastian must find a way to work together without losing their heads - or their hearts ...

My Rating: 2 hearts 

Thoughts on the Novel: A School for Unusual Girls by Kathleen Baldwin had the potential to be a decent read. Unfortunately, its emphasis on romance came at the expense of characterization and plot development. Whereas I felt like I barely got to know the secondary characters, the main character, Georgiana, came across as pretty immature and impulsive. She also kept complaining about her red hair and feeling unloved, which became annoying because she wasn't Anne Shirley

As well, the short time span that the book covered made nothing feel believable. For example, Georgiana develops an invisible ink within six days, yet tons of people had tried to do something similar, with limited success. She also meets and falls for Sebastian during this time, and then is later involved in an extremely quick rescue of someone.

A School for Unusual Girls will be released by Tor Teen on May 19, 2015. 

In exchange for an honest review, this book was received from the publisher (Raincoast Books) for free. 
From Goodreads: Ares, God of War, is leading the other dying gods into battle. Which is just fine with Athena. She's ready to wage a war of her own, and she's never liked him anyway. If Athena is lucky, the winning gods will have their immortality restored. If not, at least she'll have killed the bloody lot of them, and she and Hermes can die in peace. Cassandra Weaver is a weapon of fate. The girl who kills gods. But all she wants is for the god she loved and lost to return to life. If she can't have that, then the other gods will burn, starting with his murderer, Aphrodite. The alliance between Cassandra and Athena is fragile. Cassandra suspects Athena lacks the will to truly kill her own family. And Athena fears that Cassandra's hate will get them ALL killed. The war takes them across the globe, searching for lost gods, old enemies, and Achilles, the greatest warrior the world has ever seen. As the struggle escalates, Athena and Cassandra must find a way to work together. Because if they can't, fates far worse than death await.  

My Rating: 3.5 hearts 

Thoughts on the Novel: Mortal Gods by Kendare Blake was what I wanted the previous book in the Goddess War series, Antigoddess, to be more like. Though there were still parts where the pacing lagged, Mortal Gods had more action, and finally explained why the Greek gods and goddesses were dying. It also made Odysseus – one of my favourite Greek heroes; Perseus is the other – more like his reincarnation in that he's shown to still be wily (polymechanos, according to Homer) because he appears to have been keeping some secrets. As well, I like that Blake continues to have the gods remain prideful and not care too much about the effects on the humans involved in their affairs.

Mortal Gods was released by Tor Teen in October 2014.


  1. What's wrong with her red hair? I would be pretty thrilled to have red hair! It's too bad she reads as immature, that always drives me crazy and I get frustrated quickly and easily. I'm glad you fared a bit better with Mortal Gods even if the pacing was still slow in parts!

  2. Aww, man, I'm bummed that you didn't like A School for Unusual Girls, Z! I really wanted to like it and was looking forward to picking it up. Thanks for the heads up on the heavy romance aspect. As for Mortal Gods, I'm glad it got better for you. I've decided to pick up that series when all the books are out.

  3. I'm so glad you liked Mortal Gods a bit better. I'm really enjoying the books - they are imaginative and occasionally delightfully gross - and I want everyone to like them as much as I do. I think it's improving, actually, and I have high hopes for the next one.

  4. I haven't heard of A School for Unusual Girls before now but I think I will be skipping it, it's really a shame when the romance just takes over a book, it's no fun that way.

  5. lol you ain't no Anne Shirley, girl! Heehee

    I somehow didn't realize until now that Mortal Gods was the sequel to Antigoddess. The covers don't match at all! But I guess there are more important things... it's good that it worked out better than the previous book. Is this series a duology like her previous series, or are there more than two books planned?

  6. She definitely doesn't sound anything as awesome as Anne Shirley LOL! I remember being quite excited for Unusual Girls at first...but then, the reviews started coming in and my excitement fizzled pretty quick. I don't think I'll be reading it at all now - I hate when a romance takes over the plot of a story at the expense of world-building and character development! Sorry it didn't work out better for you though, but I am glad that you had a bit more luck with Anti-Goddess! Too bad the pacing was a bit of a bummer though. Lovely reviews^^

    Micheline @ Lunar Rainbows Reviews

  7. aw, too bad about Unusual Girls. I was really hoping that would be good.


I love comments and will reply back via either email or stopping by your blog. Please note that this is an award-free zone.