Best of 2021

Chain of Iron – Cassandra Clare

It’s time for James and Cordelia’s wedding, but only a few know the truth of the matter. This marriage is a ruse, contrived to protect Cordelia’s reputation, for James is in love with Grace Blackthorn. On top of that, her father, Elias Carstairs has returned home a very different man and Cortana inexplicably burns Cordelia’s hand when she tries to wield it. Meanwhile, Lucie is set upon bringing Jesse back to life by any means possible, and James begins to realize that he is far from free of Belial’s influence. When a murderer begins to target London’s Shadowhunters, the Merry Thieves, Cordelia and Lucie begin to follow the clues and must find the killer before it is too late.…

We Free the Stars – Hafsah Faizal

Zafira, Nasir and Kifah have survived the battle on Sharr. Heavy with the guilt of having to leave Altair a captive of the Lion of the Night, are heading for Sultan’s Keep with four of the hearts of the Sisters of Old to restore magic to Arawiya. The Arz is gone, and the various issues that plagued the caliphates are starting to wane – but with it, the curse that bound the inhabitants of Sharr to the island has fallen too and the Lion is free to return and wreak his vengeance. The zumra is on the path to completing the final steps in Altair’s plan, but each of them is contending with other threats too. Nasir struggles with his magic, knowing that he will need to use it not only against the Lion, but also to free his father who has been under the Lion’s control all these years. Zafira’s battle is within her own mind – bound to the Jawarat, she quickly realizes that it has a mind of its own and will not hesitate to use her as a conduit to unleash its power.…

The Rose Code – Kate Quinn – ARC Review

The year is 1940, and three women answer a mysterious summons to the country estate of Bletchley Park in Buckinghamshire, learning upon arrival that they are to join teams that work to break codes in intercepted German military communications. Wealthy Canadian born debutante Osla has everything, but longs to prove herself as more than just another society girl, and gains the opportunity when her proficiency in German lands her a position translating decoded enemy messages. Mab has worked hard to give herself an education and a brighter future than the poverty she grew up in. She works the codebreaking machines, even as she looks for the security a husband will bring, all the while concealing a dark secret. Then there is meek Beth, the village spinster, who has been cowed by her domineering mother all her life and made to believe she is worthless. But Osla and Mab see potential in her talent for puzzles and when she becomes one of the few female cryptanalysts at Bletchley, her true genius begins to shine through. With the extreme secrecy that the job requires, the three of them soon become close friends. Fast forward to 1947, the three women, once close friends are now enemies, torn apart by secrets and betrayal, but they meet again reluctantly when Beth, who has been confined to an asylum under false pretences, manages to reach out at last with critical information she was shut away for knowing. There was and still is a traitor among the group at Bletchley Park, and they must get back together to break one last code to find the evidence.…

Lore – Alexandra Bracken

As punishment for a past rebellion, every seven years, nine Greek Gods are forced to descend to earth and live for seven days as mortals. During these days, the descendants of ancient heroes hunt the mortal gods, seeking to kill one of them and gain their power, immortality and eternal glory in a lethal hunt known as the Agon. Lore of the House of Perseus fled that dangerous life following the brutal murders of her family by a rival house, but as a new Agon begins in New York City, she finds herself drawn back into that world when on the first day, two participants seek her out – Castor, a childhood friend she believed long dead, and the goddess Athena, one of the last original gods still alive. Severely injured, Athena asks for her help and in return, offers her an alliance and what she has long sought: revenge against Wrath, the new Ares, and the man responsible for her family’s deaths, and possibly a way to stop the cycle and end the Agon forever.…

This list will be updated throughout the year. Check back later for new additions!

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