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First… Where in the heck has Bri been all this time?!

OMG, my friends… my dear, dear friends. I have been away from you all for far too long. In the midst of everything that has been happening in our country the past three weeks, I’ve had a major roller-coaster of emotions hit me all at once. I couldn’t process what I was feeling and write honest, wholesome blog posts about Fantasy books that I adored or didn’t adore so much.

It just didn’t seem authentic and my writer’s block was REAL! So even when I tried to make myself write, nothing was clicking. 

I decided that I needed to take some personal time to ensure I was ok,  mentally. My chosen therapeutic methods weren’t exactly conventional but they were what I needed to get through. 

I yelled at the tv… I cried at the injustice  and the hate. When I got tired of being angry and sad,  I watched shows that made me feel good… and I did some of the best reading that I’ve done in a long time. I was nice to myself and didn’t try to rush the process of my mental healing. By last week, I was feeling more grounded and ready to get back to my life and normalcy. 

I also took a little trip to New Orleans and had an amazing time, and now I’m back in Atlanta refreshed and ready to write to my heart’s desire.

What better way to come back from a hiatus than writing an amazing book review about an amazing book?!

 

Release Date: July 2020

When her secret is threatened, she may be the only one who can save the kingdom.

Sixteen-year-old Kira puts on a show about having empathic abilities, but she miraculously wakes a highborn boy from a coma after a near-fatal accident on mountainous slopes. When his father threatens to expose her “magic” to the queen, she attends the kingdom’s most elite academy as a bodyguard.

Soon, she’s immersed in a strange new life—one of being a simple student trying out for the school’s sky-boarding team. Her fake life becomes the life she’s always wanted, but Kira cannot escape who she truly is. Nothing in the court of the Raj is as it seems…

Will she risk her freedom to unmask a killer before the crown falls?

 

I would like to give NetGalley & Vulcan Ink a huuuge thank you for providing me this eARC  for an honest and unbiased review. I can ensure you, as with all B+S Book Reviews, there will be no BS here. 

 

The Cover:

Bloody eye looking through a crown? Need I say more?! When I saw it, I was left in total wonderment and awe… there was no way I could live with myself without knowing what was going on underneath this captivating yet gory exterior. 

The fact that the eye there is supposed to represent a “third eye”, does not elude me as well. The other side of my blog is about all things witchy in nature, and I often talk about how activating your third eye is a necessary task when practicing the Craft. When I saw that eye on the cover, I knew that this would be a match made in heaven. 

 

 

 

The Synopsis: 

A girl with unrealized magical powers accidentally heals a boy, unveiling an incredible gift that propels her into a new life that she always dreamed of having… but obviously, it comes with a price.

The synopsis gave me just enough where I knew that, if done correctly, the story will unfurl beautifully into one where this girl will awaken this untapped power she never knew she had and totally kick ass. 

Who doesn’t love that type of story?! I’ll wait…

 

See! You got nothing… because EVERYONE loves this type of coming of age story.

At the same time, the synopsis was still vague enough that it left me wondering what this power would be, and how much danger she will be in because of this power. I was more than intrigued by the possibilities of where this story may head, and it made me want to read it that much more. 

 

 

 

It’s Ethnic: 

In the NetGalley description, this book was described as Hindu-lore…

 

My Brain:

“Ding, Ding, Ding! We have a winner folks!! Step on down Priya, your book is next on the list for Bri’s June TBR.” 

 

I love reading books from different ethnic backgrounds. There is no better way to get engrossed in someone else’s culture than reading about it in great detail; sensing the authors’ great admiration and pride in representing their ancestry.  

You basically receive a free language course while enjoying a good read. There are in-depth descriptions of the colors, sights and smells. You can almost taste the popular foods of their lands. You can see the people walking around in the local fashions. You can feel the sands of their beaches beneath your feet, or the bone-chilling coldness of the snowy mountainous air that surrounds their little snowy villages. 

I will always reach for a book that’s written by an author who’s ethnicity is sensed strongly throughout the story-line. Girl with Three Eyes definitely didn’t disappoint culturally.

 

As I’ve stated in previous posts, I’ve never been a huge fan of eBooks, but when I decided to venture into the world of “Blog Tours” I realized that there was no way I could get involved without reading digitally.  Soon after this realization, I signed up for NetGalley and that day I ran across Girl with Three Eyes. The cover made me stop in my tracks and  the synopsis sealed the deal. 

I had to read this book… 

So I requested, got approved, and let me tell ya.. I’m so glad I did. I really fell in love with the characters and the story-line had me hooked.

 

 I don’t read middle-grade books, but from my impressions of what they are, I feel that GWTE  border-lined between young adult and middle-grade. The students at the school had adorable crushes on each other, embarrassing and overbearing parents, and cliche and not so cliche “teenage problems”, so it was easy to perceive the middle-grade aesthetic more than the young adult. However, there was a seriousness such as addiction, the separation of people due to birthright, suicide, death, and murder that reminded you that the YA still thrived between the lines.  

 

The story flowed very well, and the dialogue didn’t seem forced. Great descriptiveness was felt throughout the entire story-line, and it ended on a cliffhanger that left my mouth hanging wide open and my hand slapped on my forehead. Overall… I would say that this book is a winner in the B+S Archives

Kira Shine:

Your 16 year old female protagonist… She is born with a very special gift, even though she always viewed it as a curse or useless at best.

Kira is everything that you would expect from a small-town girl coming from less than meager means. She’s incredibly gifted in many ways, yet closed off and bitter at the world for the unfair circumstances that some receive simply for being born. She’s strong yet sensitive… all the makings of a teen who’s asked to live a life beyond her years. 

Kira craves more. She wants to be a normal teenager from a “strong family name” who gets to have a real education, amazing friends, a normal family, but instead she’s carrying the weight of the world that she was born into on her shoulders.

What I love about Kira (besides her out of this world talents) is the fact that she was able to allow herself to be a kid when the opportunity was given. She didn’t succumb to the harshness of the environment that she grew up in, but instead she let it define her stronger attributes. 

 

Trace Lyon:

Trace is someone  you just hate to love. He’s a spoiled rotten little snot of a boy, who stares down his nose at any and everything. He’s mean and dismissive, but somehow in between it all, he’s very caring, charming and just as sensitive as Kira. 

You realize that his hard exterior comes from real pain, and you understand him a little better after the revelation. 

Did I mention that he was pretty much described as a Class A Hottie? Nothing better than a cute face and a bad boy attitude to make a girl swoon, ehm I right?!

 

Sarita Soren:

Shy but feisty, unrealized hotness, the only girl of strict parents, an unrequited schoolgirl crush that tears her sweet little heart apart every time the guy doesn’t notice her… we’ve all had a Sarita Soren in our lives at some point in our teenage years. She’s all of us girls’ best friend. 

I just LOVE her. The way her confidence builds from the beginning to the end, the potential  badass you know she’s going to grow into as the book series progresses, the hope that she gets the boy that she doesn’t even realize she already has enamored by her charm. Sarita is the perfect companion for your MC. 

 

Prince Ajay:

I mean, c’mon… I literally just called him “Prince”… what else needs to be said? Ajay is exactly the type of guy a teenage girl would crush all over in high school. 

Again, he’s a prince, he’s super cute, incredibly humbled, a momma’s boy, great sense of humor, eyes to get lost in, and he’s more into the girl-next-door type than the prettiest or most popular girl. 

On top of everything else, he’s a natural born leader. Friendship, loyalty, and faith are at the forefront of his values; all the makings of a true King. 

 

 When Kira saved Ajay:

 

Kira speaking out to the Queen: 

Sarita’s Impressive Room Exit:

Girl with Three Eyes was an enticing read that made me crave the world of Middle-Grade books like I never have before, even though it’s considered to be Young Adult. 

Kira captivated my heart from the very beginning, and I really understood her character because we shared the same type of upbringing (except I skateboarded and she sky-boarded). As she begins to evolve into her true form, she develops some amazing friendships and relationships along the way, but she always remained humbled and never forgot where she came from.

I really, really wanted to see her win the entire time and for everyone (including Kira) to see just how incredibly mind-blowing she really is.

This was the type of story where you’re biting your lip and thinking “hell yeah” every time the MC gets a win… because you know that she/he deserves it and it’s only a matter of time before everyone else recognizes just how unique and awesome they are as well.  

 

Go shine, Kira Shine… now’s your time.

If I had to find one gripe about the book, it would be that the big “climax” almost seemed to fall flat because it felt a bit rushed. The entire time, the story developed steadily and thoroughly, something I quite enjoyed. However, when you get to the “big reveal” and the intense action scene, everything got thrown together. I wasn’t able to process all that happened in the end as well as I was able to process all that happened earlier in the book. 

And there were so many big moments in those last pages, that a bit of dramatic pause and scene stretching would’ve done the book some good. 

 

The gripe was but a minor one though, and it wasn’t something that caused me to hate it…just want a little bit more. 

 

That’s it … my review on my very first NetGalley approval. I hope you guys enjoyed reading this as much as I enjoyed writing it.

 

It feels good to be back in the swing of things. 

  

Now, let me go create a Middle-Grade TBR. I think it’s time for me to explore this  genre a little more…

 

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“The nerdy girl in me loves stories of all kinds—but especially the gooey ones that make make your nose leak and let your latte go cold.” 

 

PRIYA ARDIS loves books of all kinds—especially the ones which enthrall you and let your chai get cold. Her novels come from a childhood of playing too much She-Ra and watching too much Spock. She started writing in notebooks on long train rides during a hot summer vacation in India. 

WWW.PRIYAARDIS.COM

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