Garden of Thorns by Amber Mitchell | ARC Review

GARDEN OF THORNS BY AMBER MITCHELL

Genre: YA Fantasy

Source: Entangled Teen in return for an honest review

Publication Date: March 7, 2017

Synopsis:
After seven grueling years of captivity in the Garden—a burlesque troupe of slave girls—sixteen-year-old Rose finds an opportunity to escape during a performance for the emperor. But the hostage she randomly chose from the crowd to aid her isn’t one of the emperor’s men—not anymore. He’s the former heir to the throne, who is now leading a rebellion against it.

Rayce is a wanted man and dangerously charismatic, the worst person for Rose to get involved with, no matter what his smile promises. But he assumes Rose’s attempt to take him hostage is part of a plot to crush the rebellion, so he takes her as his hostage. Now Rose must prove where her loyalties lie, and she offers Rayce a deal—if he helps her rescue the other girls, she’ll tell him all the Garden’s secrets.

Except the one secret she’s kept for seven years that she’ll take to her grave if she must.

Goodreads| Amazon

*I would like to thank Entangled Teen for the copy of this book in return for an honest review*

From the very beginning this book dives right in and takes off with thrilling intensity. The concept of the Garden and all that these captured girls go through in this traveling burlesque troupe was so captivating and made me want to continue from the very start. There are secrets, intrigue and kingdoms at war.

I thought Mitchell did a wonderful job with the opening of the book. I was so drawn in from the first page. She was able to maintain my attention and keep me on the edge of my seat until the end, although I did think it faltered a little in the middle. The character development of the main character Rose was so well executed. She had issues and unlike so many YA novels she actually had to work through her issues and face her own demons which was refreshing. I find that in so many novels the issues are presented and then quickly are dissolved. Rose was a strong female heroine and definitely makes the whole female independence a strong motto.

The other characters were really well developed and so well described that I could picture them perfectly. The thing with such great character development is I feel like Mitchell fell a little short on the world building. There was so much room for great world development being a fantasy novel and even more about the Garden. I was really intrigued by the concept of the Garden and wanted more from it.

I had just a few other issues with this book and without giving too much away, I thought the romance at times was too much. I really liked the way it ended but at the beginning it came on too strong and didn’t follow Roses beliefs but Mitchell managed to straighten it out and actually make me really happy that it was in the story and added a great component. The last problem I found was with how quickly they threw Rose out on missions and how she was trusted with little to no training.

Overall, I found this story to be very unique and nothing I have read before. It did not shy away from the gruesome details and wasn’t afraid to not let a strong female overcome obstacles and shine. Garden of Thorns was a fast read and kept me on the edge of my seat, never knowing what was going to happen the whole time. It made me experience a wide range of emotions and actually had an ending I cannot complain about. I really recommend YA fantasy readers who enjoy strong female leads and times of war and unrest to pick this book up!

You might also like:

The Girl of Fire and Thorns by Rae Carson

Of Fire and Stars by Audrey Coulthurst

Alanna by Tamora Pierce

January 2017 | Tea Party Wrap-Up

TEA TIME
“What’s the matter my dear, don’t you care for tea”

Lewis Carrol, Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland

 

Books I Read:

♠ Soulless by Gail Carriger

The Girl On The Train by Paula Hawkins

Between The World And Me by Ta-Nehisi Coates

♠ Salt To The Sea by Ruta Sepetys

♠ The Shape Of My Heart by Ann Aguirre

♠ RoseBlood – A.G Howard

Things That Happened on Falling Down The Book Hole This Month:

2017 Bookish Bucket List

Top 5 Books of 2016

Series Serial Reader| 2017 Reading Challenge

ROSEBLOOD Release Day Blitz

Adventures in Alice| Reading List

Join The Resistance | Quotes

♠ January Reads | First Lines

For Even More Posts and Bookish Things From January (Links to the threads of post)

Top Ten Tuesday 

Top 5 Wednesday 

Friday Reads

Noteworthy Post Around The Blog

♠ YA and Wine – YA and Wine Pairings for Your Wednesday

♠ Bookishness and Tea- How To Start Reading More Diversely

♠ Twirling Pages- 8 Ways To Destress

♠ Bookshelves and Paperbacks – The Ultimate Guide To Diverse Ya Books Releasing In 2017: January – June

♠ Nut Free Nerd- On Separating Women from their Work | Discussion

♠ Flying Through Fiction- Diverse Reads Subscription Box Launch!

Upcoming Excitements!

♠ 4-Year Blogiversary!

Bout of Books 15 Read-a-thon | Update #4

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Day 1: Thursday January 7, 2016

Book(s) Read Today: 

Built by Jay Crownover 

Beautiful Broken Mess by Kimberly Lauren 

The Wicked + The Divine: Volume 1 The Faust Act

Pages Read: 225  pages

“Expose yourself to your deepest fear; after that, fear has no power, and the fear of freedom shrinks and vanishes. You are free.”
― Kimberly Lauren, Beautiful Broken Mess

BOOKS COMPLETED: 0

TOTAL PAGES READ: 367  pages

How did your first day of Bout of Books go?

Bout of Books 15 Read-a-thon | Update #2

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Day 1: Tuesday January 5, 2016

Book(s) Read Today: 

The Final Empire by Brandon Sanderson

Built by Jay Crownover 

Beautiful Broken Mess by Kimberly Lauren

Pages Read: 87  pages

“… you have to trust that this person wont hand your heart back in a million tiny abused pieces.”
― Kimberly Lauren, Beautiful Broken Mess

BOOKS COMPLETED: 0

TOTAL PAGES READ: 142  pages

How did your first day of Bout of Books go?

Bout of Books 15 Read-a-thon | Update #1

BoB15-200x200

 

Day 1: Monday January 4, 2016

Book(s) Read Today: 

The Final Empire by Brandon Sanderson

Pages Read: 55  pages

“The right belief is like a good cloak, I think. If it fits you well, it keeps you warm and safe. The wrong fit however, can suffocate.”
― Brandon Sanderson, The Final Empire

BOOKS COMPLETED: 0

TOTAL PAGES READ: 55  pages

How did your first day of Bout of Books go?

December 2015 | Wrap-Up

DECSo its the end of 2015. I can’t believe the year is already done and over. I loved participating in #readwomen for december and loved seeing all the posts and updates from others. I would like to thank all of my followers and friends I have made this year in the book community. I love that even though I was disconnected from the book community I still felt the love and was welcomed back with open arms. I have learned so much and have gotten a greater passion and love for books and reading! So here is to an amazing 2016!

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Books I Read:

Under Different Stars by Amy A. Bartol

A Court of Thorns and Roses by Sarah J. Maas

♠ All Played Out by Cora Carmack

Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell

Seven Ways We Lie by Riley Redgate

♠ Every Last Breath by Jennifer L. Armentrout

Between Shades of Gray by Ruta Sepetys

♠ We Should All Be Feminists by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie

♠ Beautiful Broken Rules by Kimberly Lauren

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Things That Happened on Falling Down The Book Hole This Month:

#ReadWomen December TBR

Swag Inspired by A Court of Thorns and Roses

6th Annual Broke and Bookish Secret Santa

A Court of Thorns and Roses Fairy Tale Comparison

12 Days of Books Tag

How To… Prepare for 2016 Blogging

2016 LGBTQIA Reading Challenge  

Bout of Book 15 Announcement

2016 TBR Reading Challenge

‘Tis The Season| Quotes 

December Book Haul

2015 Series Wrap-Up

2015 Bookish Bucket List Wrap-Up

Rambling Down The Book Hole Book Club January Read

2016 Bookish Bucket List 

2015 End of the Year Survey

For Even More Posts and Bookish Things From December (Links to the threads of post)

Making Up For Monday 

Top Ten Tuesday 

Top 5 Wednesday 

Friday Reads

Upcoming Excitements!

♠ New Year, New Adventures

2015 End Of Year Book Survey

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I felt like it was a good time to start wrapping up the year. I know there is still some time left in 2015 and I am hoping to read a few more books before the year is up, but it won’t cause my results to be that different. I saw this survey done by Jamie @Perpetual Page-Turner ! This is my second year partaking in the end of the year book survey (check out 2014 here!)! I had a pretty slow year in reading. I was on a hiatus of by my blog and reading. I was not able to get to have of the books I wanted to this year or complete my reading challenge, but there is always next year! I would love to see your posts if you decide to participate! (all the graphics were taken from Jamie’s post @Perpetual Page-Turner)
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Number Of Books You Read: 31
Number of Re-Reads: 1
Genre You Read The Most From:  New Adult 
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1. Best Book You Read In 2015?
(If you have to cheat — you can break it down by genre if you want or 2015 release vs. backlist)

This is a completely insane question to ask someone so instead you can check out my list of top books of 2015!

2. Book You Were Excited About & Thought You Were Going To Love More But Didn’t?

The Walls Around Us by Nova Ren Suma

3. Most surprising (in a good way or bad way) book you read in 2015?

Because You’ll Never Meet Me by Leah Thomas. I was not really sure what to expect with this book, but I absolutely loved it!

4. Book You “Pushed” The Most People To Read (And They Did) In 2015?

The Martian by Andy Weir
5. Best series you started in 2015?Best Sequel of 2015? Best Series Ender of 2015?

Best series I started would have to be A Court of Thorns and Roses by Sarah J. Maas
Best sequel I read was As Long As You Love Me by Ann Aguirre the 2nd book in the 2B trilogy
Best Series Ender would have to be Ensnared by A.G Howard of the Splintered Trilogy!
6. Favorite new author you discovered in 2015?

Sarah J. Maas

7. Best book from a genre you don’t typically read/was out of your comfort zone?

Adulting: How To Become A Grownup in 468 Easy(ish) Steps by Kelly Williams Brown

8. Most action-packed/thrilling/unputdownable book of the year?

The Martian by Andy Weir

9. Book You Read In 2015 That You Are Most Likely To Re-Read Next Year?

I’ll Meet You There by Heather Demetrios

10. Favorite cover of a book you read in 2015?

Volition by Lily Paradis

11. Most memorable character of 2015?

This is definitely a hard one… I really identified with Tate from Volition by Lily Paradis, but thought Elisa from A Girl of Fire and Thorn by Rae Carson was unique and intelligent and overall one kickass female.  

12. Most beautifully written book read in 2015?

Between Shades of Gray by Ruta Sepetys

13. Most Thought-Provoking/ Life-Changing Book of 2015?

We Should All Be Feminists by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie

14. Book you can’t believe you waited UNTIL 2015 to finally read?

The Girl of Fire and Thorns by Rae Carson

15. Favorite Passage/Quote From A Book You Read In 2015?

“We spend too much time teaching girls to worry about what boys think of them. But the reverse is not the case. We don’t teach boys to care about being likable. We spend too much time telling girls that they cannot be angry or aggressive or tough, which is bad enough, but then we turn around and either praise or excuse men for the same reasons. All over the world, there are so many magazine articles and books telling women what to do, how to be and not to be, in order to attract or please men. There are far fewer guides for men about pleasing women.”
― Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, We Should All Be Feminists

“Insanity is the most pristine clarity. Let the lunacy in. Let is be your guide.”
― A.G. Howard, Ensnared

“But all of the survivors had one thing in common, and that was love. They survived through love. Whether love of friend, love of country, love of God, or even love of enemy—love reveals to us the truly miraculous nature of the human spirit.”
Ruta Sepetys, Between Shades of Gray

“Don’t feel bad for one moment about doing what brings you joy.”
― Sarah J. Maas, A Court of Thorns and Roses

16.Shortest & Longest Book You Read In 2015?

We Should All Be Feminists by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie (48pgs) Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell (445pg)

17. Book That Shocked You The Most
(Because of a plot twist, character death, left you hanging with your mouth wide open, etc.)

The Grownup by Gillian Flynn

Every Last Breath by Jennifer L. Armentrout

18. OTP OF THE YEAR (you will go down with this ship!)
(OTP = one true pairing if you aren’t familiar)

Tate and Hayden from Volition by Lily Paradis

or

Jeb and Morpheus from Splintered Trilogy by A.G Howard

19. Favorite Non-Romantic Relationship Of The Year

Because You’ll Never Meet Me by Leah Thomas

20. Favorite Book You Read in 2015 From An Author You’ve Read Previously

Ensnared by A.G Howard

21. Best Book You Read In 2015 That You Read Based SOLELY On A Recommendation From Somebody Else/Peer Pressure:

Anna and the French Kiss by Stephanie Perkins

22. Newest fictional crush from a book you read in 2015?

Again this year there were so many. That is the problem with reading New Adult! So many crush options! Rule from Marked Men Series by Jay Crownover, Silas from All Broke Down by Cora Carmack and Tamlin from A Court of Thorns and Roses by Sarah J. Maas

23. Best 2015 debut you read?

Because You’ll Never Meet Me by Leah Thomas

24. Best Worldbuilding/Most Vivid Setting You Read This Year?

A Court of Thorns and Roses by Sarah J. Maas

or

Ready Player One by Ernest Cline

25. Book That Put A Smile On Your Face/Was The Most FUN To Read?

Anna and the French Kiss by Stephanie Perkins

26. Book That Made You Cry Or Nearly Cry in 2015?

I’ll Meet You There by Heather Demetrios

Volition by Lily Paradis

27. Hidden Gem Of The Year?

Under Different Stars by Amy. A Bartol

28. Book That Crushed Your Soul?

Between Shades of Gray by Ruta Sepetys

29. Most Unique Book You Read In 2015?

Because You’ll Never Meet Me by Leah Thomas

Under Different Stars by Amy A. Bartol

30. Book That Made You The Most Mad (doesn’t necessarily mean you didn’t like it)?

Significance by Shelly Crane (It was just such a let down)
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1. New favorite book blog you discovered in 2015?

There are too many. I am hoping to create a list sometime soon!

2. Favorite review that you wrote in 2015?

I am not a fan of my reviews. I do not think I write them well enough and really get across what I want to say. But this year I started a new blog feature. I love my How To... post! There are so much fun and hopefully helpful.

3. Best discussion/non-review post you had on your blog?

Creature of the Night Book Tag 

4. Best event that you participated in (author signings, festivals, virtual events, memes, etc.)?

I participated in a few read-a-thons. I did not get to do much this year. I did participate in TBTB Secret Santa and I love that!

5. Best moment of bookish/blogging life in 2015?

Coming back from my hiatus and getting to talk to all my blogging/bookish friends!

7. Most Popular Post This Year On Your Blog (whether it be by comments or views)?

Surprisingly Sanctum by Madeleine Roux Book Review… I am interested to know why but it definitely has had the most hits on my blog this year.

8. Post You Wished Got A Little More Love?

My How To… posts I have made three so far and worked really hard on them.

9. Best bookish discover (book related sites, book stores, etc.)?

Bullet Journals and the Book Spreadsheet!
10. Did you complete any reading challenges or goals that you had set for yourself at the beginning of this year?

Unfortunately no, but I have set a lot of goals for 2016!

 

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1. One Book You Didn’t Get To In 2015 But Will Be Your Number 1 Priority in 2016?

Republic of Thieves by Scott Lynch

2. Book You Are Most Anticipating For 2016 (non-debut)?

A Court of Mist and Fury by Sarah J. Maas

3. 2016 Debut You Are Most Anticipating?

The Crown’s Game by Evelyn Skye

Assassin’s Heart by Sarah Ahiers

Of Fire and Stars by Audrey Coulthurst

just to name a few!

4. Series Ending/A Sequel You Are Most Anticipating in 2016?

The Thorn of Emberlain by Scott Lynch

5. One Thing You Hope To Accomplish Or Do In Your Reading/Blogging Life In 2016?

Read tons of books!

6. A 2016 Release You’ve Already Read & Recommend To Everyone:

There haven’t been any.