Mini Reviews: Shadow Frost, Geekerella, Jade City

Posted March 18, 2020 by Sophia

Mini Reviews: Shadow Frost, Geekerella, Jade City

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Mini Reviews: Shadow Frost, Geekerella, Jade CityShadow Frost by Coco Ma
Shadow Frost #1
Published by Blackstone Publishing on October 1, 2019
Genres: Young Adult, Fantasy
Format: ARC, eBook
Source: Publisher

IN THE KINGDOM OF AXARIA, a darkness rises.

Some call it a monster, laying waste to the villagers and their homes. Some say it is an invulnerable demon summoned from the deepest abysses of the Immortal Realm. Many soldiers from the royal guard are sent out to hunt it down.

Not one has ever returned.

When Asterin Faelenhart, Princess of Axaria and heir to the throne, discovers that she may hold the key to defeating the mysterious demon terrorizing her kingdom, she vows not to rest until the beast is slain. With the help of her friends and the powers she wields — though has yet to fully understand — Asterin sets out to complete a single task. The task that countless, trained soldiers have failed.

To kill it.

But as they hunt for the demon, they unearth a plot to assassinate the Princess herself instead. Asterin and her companions begin to wonder how much of their lives have been lies, especially when they realize that the center of the web of deceit might very well be themselves. With no one else to turn to, they are forced to decide just how much they are willing to sacrifice to protect the only world they have ever known.

That is, of course… if the demon doesn’t get to them first.

From young author Coco Ma comes a dazzling new tale of adventure, power, and betrayal, weaving together a stunning world of magic with a killer cast in an explosive, unforgettable debut.

A copy of the book was provided for review purposes - thank you! Receiving a copy does not guarantee a positive review and therefore does not affect the opinion or content of the review.

I really wanted to enjoy Shadow Frost with promises of assassins, monsters and darkness set in a fantasy world. But as much as the interactions between the characters were a delight to read and I loved every second of it, the writing style just isn’t my type. I personally didn’t feel the book was worth investing more time into, and I’m sad to say I had to DNF this at 34%.

Mini Reviews: Shadow Frost, Geekerella, Jade CityGeekerella by Ashley Poston
Once Upon a Con #1
Other Books: The Princess and the Fangirl
Published by Quirk Books on April 4, 2017
Genres: Young Adult, Contemporary, Romance, Retellings
Format: Physical
Source: Library

Cinderella goes to the con in this fandom-fueled twist on the classic fairy tale.

Part romance, part love letter to nerd culture, and all totally adorbs, Geekerella is a fairy tale for anyone who believes in the magic of fandom. Geek girl Elle Wittimer lives and breathes Starfield, the classic sci-fi series she grew up watching with her late father. So when she sees a cosplay contest for a new Starfield movie, she has to enter. The prize? An invitation to the ExcelsiCon Cosplay Ball, and a meet-and-greet with the actor slated to play Federation Prince Carmindor in the reboot. With savings from her gig at the Magic Pumpkin food truck (and her dad’s old costume), Elle’s determined to win…unless her stepsisters get there first.

Teen actor Darien Freeman used to live for cons—before he was famous. Now they’re nothing but autographs and awkward meet-and-greets. Playing Carmindor is all he’s ever wanted, but the Starfield fandom has written him off as just another dumb heartthrob. As ExcelsiCon draws near, Darien feels more and more like a fake—until he meets a girl who shows him otherwise.

Geekerella is such an adorable and cute read featuring everything fandom related. It’s a retelling of Cinderella with a happily ever after and set at a convention, which really makes the inner fangirl in me sigh happily. The first novel in Ashley Posten’s Once Upon a Con series is a quick and light read for those who enjoy cute romances with fandom.

Side note: my local library removed this from the Hoopla catalog when I tried renewing it back in June and I may or may not have cried a little inside. I had to put this on my TBR again and start it over, rude much??? I still appreciate all they’ve done, though. Other than the fact I more than likely lost my soul during my childhood within the shelves.

Content and Trigger Warning: This book contains content that may be triggering to some, which we will try our best provide below the synopsis.
Mini Reviews: Shadow Frost, Geekerella, Jade CityJade City by Fonda Lee
The Green Bone Saga #1
Other Books: Zeroboxer
Published by Orbit on November 7, 2017
Genres: Adult, Fantasy
Format: Physical
Source: Library

Magical jade—mined, traded, stolen, and killed for—is the lifeblood of the island of Kekon. For centuries, honorable Green Bone warriors like the Kaul family have used it to enhance their abilities and defend the island from foreign invasion.

Now the war is over and a new generation of Kauls vies for control of Kekon's bustling capital city. They care about nothing but protecting their own, cornering the jade market, and defending the districts under their protection. Ancient tradition has little place in this rapidly changing nation.

When a powerful new drug emerges that lets anyone—even foreigners—wield jade, the simmering tension between the Kauls and the rival Ayt family erupts into open violence. The outcome of this clan war will determine the fate of all Green Bones—from their grandest patriarch to the lowliest motorcycle runner on the streets—and of Kekon itself.

Jade City begins an epic tale of family, honor, and those who live and die by the ancient laws of jade and blood.

Jade City caused SO. MUCH. DISTRESS. In a good way, thankfully. Fonda Lee creates characters that will make you want to be invested in and care about them, but then rip out your heart while you’re crying. The story was a little hard to get into at first only because I spend 98% of my reading with YA, but once I got used to it, I really enjoyed Jade City! I loved being immersed in the world of Kekon and jade with the growing tensions between the No Peak and Mountain clans. It keeps you on the edge of your seat, wanting to know when and if something will explode between the clans, and I’m on the hunt* for Jade War as soon as my library pile dwindles down.

*I have a copy of Jade War right now! I totally wrote the review sometime last year and never scheduled it until months later. But hey, better than January 2019? Just kidding, I’ve got some from February and March probably.

shadow frost geekerella jade city

Sophia started blogging in February 2012 for the hell of it and is surprisingly still around. She has a GIF for nearly everything, probably listens to too much K-Pop and is generally in an existential crisis of sorts (she's trying her best). In 2020, she graduated with a Bachelor's in Communications and minor in Women's Studies. More of her bookish reviews and K-pop Roundups can be found at The Arts STL.

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12 responses to “Mini Reviews: Shadow Frost, Geekerella, Jade City

  1. Geekerella is a favorite of mine. It just made me happy. I really enjoyed the second book in the series too, and am excited to read the next one. Always up for a B&B retelling

    • Sophia

      I finished the sequel not too long ago and enjoyed it as well! Can’t wait for the third to come out.

    • Sophia

      Oh no, sorry you didn’t enjoy it either! Seems like it’s been either a hit or miss with the reviews I’ve seen so far.

  2. Geekrella has been on my TBR forever now. I have heard so many good things about it and I wanted to read the retelling for a while! Hope you are staying safe!

    • Sophia

      Thanks, Gayathri, I hope you’re staying safe as well! Hope you get around to reading Geekerella soon and enjoy it as much as I did!

  3. I’ve heard such mixed things about Geekerella, so I’m glad to hear you enjoyed it!
    Jade City was one of my favourite reads from last year, so I’m happy you liked that one too. It definitely cause me a lot of distress as well :’) I still get sad thinking about it.

    • Sophia

      Oh no, me too! Have you read Jade War yet??? (Not gonna lie, though, Jade City resulted in me procrastinating the sequel for so long because I was Not Ready. 🤣)

      • Haha, I definitely get not being ready for Jade War, but yes! I have read it and I loved it even more than Jade City! It really surprised me because I hardly ever like sequels more than their predecessors. I hope you liked it too.

        • Sophia

          I did! I think I’m ruined for the third book now. Can’t trust Fonda Lee to leave my favorites alone. 😤

  4. Eeekk!! I’m still on a « geekerella cloud » 😅 I loved that book so much- why in hell didn’t I read that before ??! Now I absolutely need a paper copy, and to read the other in the serie- ahah

    Happy that you enjoyed the majority of thoses 💕 sadly, arcs can be dissapointing :/ specially to DNF/really DONT like it because it’s not what you’d thought the book will be … but I guess that’s part of our « job » 😅

    • Sophia

      Ahahaha, better late than never; welcome to the bandwagon! I enjoyed Geekerella enough that I immediately tried to get ahold of the sequel, and I’m excited for the third book to come out (in a few weeks or months?).

      Yeah, unfortunately, it do be like that sometimes (but I definitely wish the book would be amazing).