Saturday, August 2, 2014

Books and More Books (plus a review)

Hello, bloggers! This is going to be a little bit of a long post. So... just warning you.

This month, school starts. Truthfully, it is bittersweet. Bitter because school is a drag. Sweet because I am a high school freshman and get to take a British Literature class! Yes, I might sound like a nerd, but I love to read. Anything, really. I hope you know that I love Jane Austen and I am going to reread Pride and Prejudice, one of my favorite classics.

But, one of the main cons of going back to school is... less book freedom. Since I'm doing school, I'm going to mostly be reading classics. Not that there's anything wrong with that, but there's so many books I want to read. So I'm going to cram. Right now, I am reading The Selection by Kiera Cass. So far, I really like it. The great part about it is, the dystopian world is actually NOT that hard to understand! Wow!

Okay, this is a little overdue, but I wanted to review By Darkness Hid by Jill Williamson, the first book in the Blood of Kings Trilogy... and her debut novel.  I admit, I'm not that into fantasy. There's a lot of made up words and for a little brain like mine, that's hard. But I especially wanted to read a Jill Williamson book because of her amazing blog, Go Teen Writers. So onto the review!

Genre: YA Christian Fantasy

Back Cover: Amazon Version. (Short version, the actual one was too long to put on this post)
Given the chance to train as a squire, kitchen servant Achan Cham hopes to pull himself out of his pitiful life and become a Kingsguard Knight. When Achan's owner learns of his training, he forces Achan to spar with the Crown Prince--more of a death sentence than an honor. Meanwhile, strange voices in Achan's head cause him to fear he's going mad. While escorting the prince to a council presentation, their convoy is attacked. Achan is wounded and arrested, but escapes from prison--only to discover a secret about himself he never believed possible

What I liked: Jill Williamson didn't disappoint. I loved her writing style and her characters. She put in the perspective of a girl and a boy, making it appealing to both genders. The story world was very interesting. It wasn't that hard to understand. At first, the whole "bloodvoicing" thing seemed a little weird to me, but in the end, I loved it. It was original and intriguing.

Achan had his rough spots, but I ended up liking him. Vrell was great too. They especially made good chemistry together. I'm not going give anything away but... wow. The climax was amazing! Unpredictable and incredibly awesome. It made the story. I also liked the Christian aspect too. It wasn't "in your face" kind of thing. At the same time, God wasn't treated like a last option. The author wasn't afraid to talk about Him, unlike other Christian books I've read.

What I didn't like: Like I said before, this story was in two perspectives. There's nothing wrong with that, of course. Most of the time, one character would be in this exciting scene and then the chapter would end. As a result, the perspective changed. I wanted to know what happened so I wasn't that interested in the other character. It was a little frustrating.

Also, Achan found himself having feelings for two girls. It was a little understood, but I didn't like it. It didn't make sense.

Conclusion: I've never liked fantasy that much, but I loved this book. It was humorous, exciting, and meaningful. I persistently recommend it to anyone, especially people who enjoy fantasy. You will not be disappointed. Jill Williamson is an outstanding author. I'll definitely read more of her books.
 I'm now reading the sequel. It's really long, but so far so great. So... read this book.


  1. Isn't the sequel ginormous?! Apparently the last one is just as long.... Achan's love life bothered me too. Seriously dude, pick a girl and stick with it. But over all, it's one of my favorite books ever.

    1. Yeah, that bothered me a little bit, but the whole book made up for it.


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