Bonny and Read by Julie Walker- Book review

I couldn’t resist this historical fiction about the loves and lives of Anne Bonny and Mary Read, the fierce, female pirates in 1720. My review of Bonny and Read by Julie Walker.

Genre: Historical Fiction

Publication date: 2nd August 2022

Source: with thanks to Publisher Hodder books and NetGalley

Plantation owner’s daughter, runaway wife, pirate – Anne Bonny has forged her own story in a man’s world. But when she is involved in the capture of a British merchant ship, she is amazed to find another woman amongst the crew, with a history as unconventional as her own. Dressed as a boy from childhood, Mary Read has been a soldier, a sailor, a widow – but never a woman in charge of her own destiny.
As their exhilarating, tumultuous exploits find fame, the ballad of Bonny and Read is sung from shore to shore – but when you swim against the tide of history, freedom is a dangerous thing.


I can’t resist a book, film or TV show about pirates and when I saw this title on NetGalley- I knew I had to read this and I wasn’t disappointed.

I received a copy of this book for a free and unbiased review

This book is told from the points of view of Anne and Mary in the third person. Their voices are strong and interesting. I loved how the author portrayed them as women who turned to piracy because they are women ahead of their time. These women choose a life on the sea to be free from society’s expectations of them rather than being victims or forced into a life on the sea.

Anne runs away from a husband she married in haste by joining Jack Ratham and his crew on his pirate ship. Mary, who dresses as a man has served as a man in the army and later joins the Navy as a widow dressed as a man. She gleefully joins Anne and Jack when her ship is boarded and finds out one of the pirates is quite clearly a pirate. 

I particularly liked the relationship between Anne and Mary grows into a strong friendship with no resentment or jealousy. The book doesn’t shy away from Bonny’s violence and her lack of empathy for the people around her or Read’s reaction to this.

The story does slow a bit towards the middle but picks up towards the end( the fate of most of the pirates shouldn’t come as a surprise. I noticed a lack of historical notes in the book but thankfully google came to the rescue.

Perfect for fans of

I would recommend this book to anyone who loves historical fiction with strong women or anyone who loves reading about pirates. Black Sails, the TV show.

Content warning


Top Ten Tuesday-Books from my past seasonal TBR I still haven’t read yet

It’s another Tuesday and another Top Ten. This week it’s an easy books from my past seasonal TBR that I still haven’t read yet.


Top Ten Tuesday was created by The Broke and the Bookish in June of 2010 and was moved to That Artsy Reader Girl in January of 2018. It was born of a love of lists, a love of books, and a desire to bring bookish friends together.

I have to say, it was a little disappointing to see how many books I haven’t read  from my past seasonal TBR but I’m going to focus on the positives- I did read a few! Here are the top five.

The Dying Squad by Adam Simcox

I’m still keen on this book- a policeman investigating his own murder after his death

Violet made of Thorns by Gina Chen

I still love this cover

Her Majesty’s secret Cover by Juno Dawson

Hopefully I will read this over the summer

Inda by Sherwood Smith

This one is from my Autumn 2021 list!

The Memory Theatre by Karin Tidbeck

I completely forgot about this one about parallel worlds

Taken by Benedict Jacka

I’ve put this urban fantasy series on hold (accidentally).

Thank you for reading

Please leave a link to your TTT, so I can have a look at your TTT

The Councillor by E J Beaton- Book review

I was so happy to win a copy of The Councillor by E J Beaton, a book that has been on my TBR list, and here is my review of this fantasy.

Genre: Fantasy

Source: Won in a giveaway

Series: The Councillor ( book 1)

When the death of Iron Queen Sarelin Brey fractures the realm of Elira, Lysande Prior, the palace scholar is appointed Councillor. Publically, Lysande must choose the next monarch from amongst the city-rulers vying for the throne. Privately, she seeks to discover which ruler murdered the queen.
Resourceful, analytical, and quiet, Lysande appears to embody the motto she was raised with: everything in its place. Yet while she hides her drug addiction from her new associates, she cannot hide her growing interest in power. She becomes locked in a game of strategy with the city-rulers – especially the prince Luca Fontaine, who seems to shift between ally and rival.
Further from home, an old enemy is stirring: the magic-wielding White Queen is on the move again, and her alliance with a traitor among the royal milieu poses a danger not just to the peace of the realm, but to the survival of everything that Lysande cares about.


The Councillor by E J Beaton has been on my to-read list for ages, so I was over the moon when I won a giveaway for this fantasy.

Lysande is the main point of view character ( third person )and is deliciously grey.  A woman who is unapologetically unafraid to be herself with no angst and will go after anything and anyone she wants.

Continue reading “The Councillor by E J Beaton- Book review”

Mai Tais for the Lost by Mia V Ross- Book review

I enjoyed this sci-fi novella set under the sea in a city that only the rich can afford with a murder only Marrow Nightingale can solve.Here is my review of Mai Tais for the Lost by Mia V Ross

Marrow Nightingale is a professional pain in the ass. As Electric Blue Moon’s only licensed private investigator, she’s the one who snoops the closets of the elite who think the laws don’t apply to them. But when the son of a wealthy family turns up dead, it’s Marrow’s closet that everyone is suddenly interested in. That dead playboy in the foyer? It’s her adoptive sibling, Rocket Nightingale.
Now, Marrow’s dodging gossip columnists who smell blood in the water, renegade corporate IP with minds of their own, and badge-wearing bone-breakers who would love nothing more than to ship her back to the surface. Which is still on fire.If Marrow can’t catch the killer, this case is going to sink the Nightingale Electric Detective Agency.


I couldn’t resist this book when I saw this title and despite being a novella, Mai Tais for the Lost by Mia V Ross packs a lot of action, tech, mystery and partying.

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One foot in the Fade by Luke Arnold- book review

Great urban fantasy. Read my review of One Foot in The Fade by Luke Arnold, in the Fetch Phillips Series.

Genre: Urban Fantsay

Series: Fetch Phillips Achives ( read my series review here)

Source: My own

In a city that lost its magic, an angel falls in a downtown street. His wings are feathered, whole—undeniably magical—the man clearly flew, because he left one hell of a mess when he plummeted into the sidewalk.
But what sent him up? What brought him down? And will the answers help Fetch bring the magic back for good?
Working alongside necromancers, genies, and shadowy secret societies, through the wildest forests and dingiest dive bars, this case will leave its mark on Fetch’s body, his soul, and the fate of the world.


The Fetch Phillips series is one of my favourite urban fantasy series- Fetch is not just a human in a society full of magical creatures who can’t use their magic or be magical -Fetch is one of the reasons why the magic has gone. But he is trying to bring magic back one bumbling step at a time and he hopes helping a genie with one foot in the fade can actually do it this time.

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Silk Fire by Zabe Ellor- Book review

I was so happy to be approved by NetGalley for this science-fiction fantasy set in a Matriarchal world with political intrigue,twists and dragons. Here is my review of Silk Fire by Zabe Ellor.

Genre: Science fiction Fantasy

Publication date July 2022

Source :Netgalley

Koreshiza Brightstar is a courtesan on a planet-based matriarchal city where magic and technology work together. He thirsts for revenge against the aristocratic father who betrayed him as a child. But a chance encounter with a dying god leaves him with powers that could change the world, he realises he will need to trust others to pursue his vengeance and keep his secret safe.

I received a copy of the book for a free and unbiased review.


This book has one of the most memorable opening sentences from a character I have ever read!

The world-building in this book is ambitious in its scope and truly amazing- the blend of magic and technology blends together perfectly. In this world, Hovercrafts and Dragons share the sky. The underlying premise is that of essence, something ethereal that only a few people possess which is greatly desired, a commodity to take and hoard is unusual. I love reading   Matriarchal worlds in fantasy as opposed to the usual patriarchy, but this society isn’t perfect and is a good reflection of what sexism and misogyny looks like from the other side.

Koreshiza or Kore is a courtesan, a man who uses his body and brightness (from his essence) to build influence. Now he wants to use this influence to take down the father who betrayed and abandoned him and his mother. The book is written in the first-person from Kore point of view and it took a while for me to get used to the tangential nature of his narration but then this does fit his fragmented and broken personality. He trusts no one and for years has kept his true self hidden but while trying to influence the succession he finds himself falling for a man and a woman who loves him despite his flaws.

The plot is fast and moves quickly with plenty of twists and revelations. The political intrigue is as riveting as the action scenes.

This is definitely a book for adults who are not squeamish about ‘scenes of sexual nature ‘ as there are many sexual encounters in the book. I admit to skimming through most of them as I just wanted to get back to the story and action (except for the scene in the first part of the book which forms a key part of the book).

Content warning

Physical violence in sexual encounters with dubious consent, sexual abuse,(off-page), domestic violence, threats of sexual violence.

Perfect for fans

I think anyone who likes Kusheil’s Dart would enjoy this

Half a soul by Olivia Atwater- Book review

I enjoyed Half a Soul by Olivia Atwater, a romantic fantasy set in Regency England featuring a heroine with half a soul, a grumpy magician, meddling guardians, dances and faeries. Here is my review.

Series Regency Faeries Book #1

Genre: Fantasy

Source: NetGalley and Publishers Little Brown and Orbit

Publication date: 30th June 2022

‘Ever since she was cursed by a faerie, Theodora Ettings has had no sense of fear or embarrassment – a condition which makes her prone to accidental scandal. Dora hopes to be a quiet, sensible wallflower during the London Season – but when the strange, handsome and utterly uncouth Lord Sorcier discovers her condition, she is instead drawn into dangerous and peculiar faerie affairs.
If Dora’s reputation can survive both her curse and her sudden connection with the least-liked man in all of high society, then she may yet reclaim her normal place in the world. . . but the longer Dora spends with Elias Wilder, the more she begins to suspect that one may indeed fall in love, even with only half a soul.


I received a copy of this book for a free and unbiased opinion.

I enjoyed this romantic fantasy- Half a Soul by Olvia Atwater was lovely and entertaining read.

Continue reading “Half a soul by Olivia Atwater- Book review”

Of Charms,Ghosts and Grievances by Aliette De Bodard- Book review

Here is my review of Charms, Ghosts and Grievances , an epic fantasy Aliette De Boddard set in the world of the Dominion of the Fallen.

It was supposed to be a holiday, with nothing more challenging than babysitting, navigating familial politics and arguing about the proper way to brew tea.
But when dragon prince Thuan and his ruthless husband Asmodeus find a corpse in a ruined shrine and a hungry ghost who is the only witness to the crime, their holiday goes from restful to high-pressure. Someone is trying to silence the ghost and everyone involved. Asmodeus wants revenge for the murder; Thuan would like everyone, including Asmodeus, to stay alive.
Chased by bloodthirsty paper charms and struggling to protect their family, Thuan and Asmodeus are going to need all the allies they can—and, as the cracks in their relationship widen, they’ll have to face the scariest challenge of all: how to bring together their two vastly different ideas of their future…A heartwarming standalone book set in a world of dark intrigue.


I received a copy of this book for a free and unbiased opinion.

This novella was an enjoyable read with an intriguing ghost story, charming leads and quirky side characters. The plot races along with a satisfying end.

Continue reading “Of Charms,Ghosts and Grievances by Aliette De Bodard- Book review”