House of Earth and Blood

book cover for Passion of the Vampire King by Bella Klaus

At the beginning of May, I finished reading Passion of the Vampire King. It’s the fifth book in the Blood Fire saga by Bella Klaus. This one was probably my least favorite in the series so far. It just felt like nothing in this book really moved the story along and it wasn’t really keeping my attention, so I had to force myself to get through it. Of course, it ended on yet another cliffhanger, but at this point I’m kind of feeling like who cares. And for a book titled Passion of the Vampire King, there has been very little of it compared to the other books in the series.

The one thing I did like was the description of how Mera gets herself to sleep. It’s basically a meditation/mind-stilling practice and how she gets her mind to quiet. She said that Istabel taught her to imagine a staircase that goes down for infinity and she inhales when she puts her foot on the step and then exhales when she brings her other foot to join it. And she just goes step by step, focusing on that and her breathing. It made me think of Nesta going down the stairs and thinking “step to step” in her mind. I did actually try this and it was pretty effective at quieting my mind and letting me focus on my breathing to go to sleep.

As I was finishing up this book, I was trying to decide what to read next and I wanted something that would be really good and keep my attention like my reread of ACOTAR. It really came down to deciding between reading Crescent City, the new Sarah J. Maas book or starting a reread of the Fever series by Karen Marie Moning so that I can read the new book that just came out. I decided to do a poll on Instagram and see what the results were.

poll with book covers for two books and text that reads What should I read next. Crescent City has 79% and Dark Fever has 21% of votes

No contest, really. So, I picked up Crescent City and dove in. It’s actually the first book in a new series and this book is The House of Earth and Blood.

hardback of Crescent City House of Earth and Blood by Sarah J Maas

I admit that the first few chapters I felt so lost. She’s giving you ALL this information and you’re trying to sift through people and places and relationships and all the world-building. After awhile the story itself took hold and I was hooked. I loved Bryce. I love how sassy and no bullshit she is. A friend of mine had said that this book was grittier than the ACOTAR series, and she was right. It is. And I loved that about it. I loved that this was more of a mystery too.

hardback of Crescent City with a cup of coffee and text that reads: The slow burn of this book is killing me. In all the best ways.

In true SJM form though, it was a slow burn between the main characters, but with plenty of surprise twists along the way.

Text that reads: Me reading Crescent City this morning: *slams book shut* "When I open this again I'd better not read what I thought I just did."

The ending was so so good. It tore me up something fierce and I bawled my eyes out repeatedly. I can’t wait for the next book in the series, House of Sky and Breath, which I think is due out in February. I’ll definitely be rereading this one again before I dive into the next one. Highly recommend this one! And the artwork on the cover and endpapers is gorgeous.

end pages for Crescent City with elaborate artwork

After finishing Crescent City, I needed another palate cleanser so I was back to the Blood Fire saga. This one wasn’t any better than the last one, just more of the same. I’m liking Hades more and more as a character though. Especially because he doesn’t have a stick up his ass like Valentine does. This is the sixth book in the series. I think there’s one more.

book cover for Rebirth of the Vampire King by Bella Klaus

I decided to check out the library’s ebooks to see if they had any of the Jennifer L. Armentrout books. Specifically, I really want to read From Blood and Ash, but they didn’t have that one. My friend, Marty, had recommended the Dark Elements series by her as well, so I thought I’d give it a try.

book cover for White Hot Kiss by Jennifer L. Armentrout

This book reminded me a bit of the Cassandra Clare Mortal Instruments series. I really enjoyed the book and I thought it was really interesting that the Wardens are gargoyles. I don’t think I’ve ever run into a book with gargoyles before. I’m a little surprised how quickly I zipped through this considering it’s over 700 pages. But I really enjoyed it and I really LOVE Roth and can’t wait to read more about him.

So, that wraps up what I read in May!

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