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Book Review: 7 Killer Things about KING OF FOOLS by Amanda Foody

“King of Fools”

The Shadow Game #2

by Amanda Foody

Nikki’s Rating: 7 out of 10

Summary:  Enne and Levi have beaten the Shadow Game but are now involved in an even more dangerous game. As they each try to run their gangs and keep ahead of the rising violence within the City of Sin, they must also protect the secret of who Enne Salta really is. As the city closes in on them, Enne and Levi make a desperate gamble and team up with their rival gangs but now they don’t know who to trust and they come to find that the sinister legends of New Reynes may not be legends at all.

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7 Killer Things about KING OF FOOLS by Amanda Foody

(May Contain Spoilers)

1. Enne

Enne Salta is an enjoyable character throughout The Shadow Game series but especially in “King of Fools” as she learns more about herself and really comes into her own. Specifically I appreciate her unwillingness to apologize for being who she is and doing what is necessary to survive. I love the fact that she embraces her contradictions as she realizes that she can be beautiful, kind, and caring while also being bold, ruthless, and strong. And her all-girl gang is totally badass and I would love to join!

2. The Couples

Ever the hopeless romantic, “King of Fools” had 3 couples that I was rooting for and I was ecstatic when they each got together. I loved the chemistry between Levi and Enne, the tension between them as they tried to fight their feelings was palpable! And I was so happy when Jac and Sophia finally got together, they deserve to be happy. And while neither of these relationships went where I hoped they would, at least Tock and Lola are still together and in one piece.

3. Games

Levi and Enne were running so many different games throughout “King of Fools” but then there were other characters who had their own plans and agendas as well. “King of Fools” kept me on my toes simply from all the different games going on. You weren’t sure who was pulling what strings, if it would interfere with other characters’ plans, and what goal everyone had. And while some characters achieved their original goals, I’m no longer sure what their new agenda is and it’s making me a bit nervous.s not an “issue” in the Shadow Game world as it should be in our own.

4. Vianca Augustine

An incredibly sad, manipulative, and petty bitch, Vianca Augustine was a great villain especially since she was able to control both Levi and Enne, even forcing them to be at odds with each other, regardless of their feelings for one another. Thankfully this awful woman was killed by her own son, allowing Levi and Enne to escape her hold and Harrison to get his revenge. Victory dance!

5. So Many Questions!

The Shadow Game series has really kept me engaged because of all the mysteries! Who is Bryce Balfour really and what is his power that is similar to the power of the Shadow Game? How is he connected to the Shadow Game? Is he human or a living legend? What is the Phoenix Club and who is involved? What is the House of Shadows? So many questions and I need answers Foody!

6. The Ending

So many things happened at the end of “King of Fools”! Enne’s true identity has been revealed. Jac is dead, Levi hates Enne. Sophia wants access to the House of Shadows. Harrison allowed Jonas to die and is taking on new omertas. And who did Bryce mean when he said, “I now get to save someone else”? I’m hoping he means Jac but I have no idea what Bryce is up to.

7. Queen of Volts

Hopefully we will learn more about the House of Shadows, the Phoenix Club, and the Shadow Game in “Queen of Volts”, Book 3 of The Shadow Game series because we need answers! 


As always, thank you for reading. I would love to hear from you so feel free to contact me or comment below. If you would like to support this blog and/or my paintings please become my patron.

Be Authentic. Be Unique. Be You.

Book Review: 7 Amazing things about ACE OF SHADES by Amanda Foody (Owlcrate Book April 2018)

“Ace of Shades”

The Shadow Game #1

by Amanda Foody

Nikki’s Rating: 7 out of 10

Summary: Ordinary and well-behaved Enne Salta enters New Reynes, the City of Sin, in a desperate search for her mother. As she is swept up into the depraved lives of those that cheat, steal, and con, Enne comes to find that her mother may not be who she thinks she is and that her whole life is a lie. Teamed up with the notorious gang leader Levi, Enne and Levi make gamble after gamble trying to stay ahead of their enemies, until their time runs out and the deadly Shadow Game finds them.

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7 Amazing things about ACE OF SHADES by Amanda Foody (Owlcrate Book April 2018)

(May Contain Spoilers)

1. Six of Crows meets Caraval

Being set in a sinful city filled with gambling, gangs, and crime as well as elements of magic, “Ace of Shades” felt like a mix of Leigh Bardugo’s Six of Crows series with Stephanie Garber’s Caraval series. As both these series are absolutely amazing and I loved them, “Ace of Shades” was an instant like for me!

2. Abilities

One of my favorite things about the Shadow Game world is that each person has an ability, a primary dominant one and a lesser secondary one. As someone who devoured comics growing up, with the Uncanny X-men being my all-time favorite, I really enjoy stories involving people with powers. In The Shadow Game series, a person’s primary ability is usually identifiable by their last name and abilities are passed down from parents to child.

3. Levi

Professional conman and gang leader, Levi Glaisyer is irresistible in looks, “with his dark brown skin, his calculating gaze and his signature coarse curls—bronze at the roots, but black at the ends, like a burnt-out match.” But more importantly, he is devastatingly charming and while he is arrogant and seriously egotistical, he cares deeply about those he considers his friends. This is also my first experience having a male bisexual MAIN character in a book, which was appreciated as well as that his sexuality was not an “issue” in the Shadow Game world as it should be in our own.

4. Enne

“Ace of Shades” really follows the coming of age story of Enne Salta. Not only do we see her struggle with the conflicting accounts of her mother, Lourdes, we see Enne grapple internally with what she wants to do versus what she thinks is the “proper” thing to do. As a girl who was brought up being taught etiquette to become a lady, Enne has stifled many parts of herself, including her sexuality and brilliant, ambitious mind. It is a pleasure to watch her blossom into a more confident, assertive woman as she navigates the City of Sin.

5. The Mysteries

Probably the most intriguing part of The Shadow Game series is the Shadow Game itself. I am so curious about who is involved with the Shadow Game, what the purpose of the Shadow Game is, what kind of magic it involves. I just have so many questions!

6. Sedric Torren

This asshole! While we don’t see much of Sedric Torren thankfully, the little we do see and hear about him is enough for me to want to kill him. There are not enough negative adjectives to describe this sleazy, disgusting, perverted pedophile. The reason he is on this list? He fucking dies and it makes me so happy to think about. While slow painful torment would have been more justifiable for his crimes, I will accept death as a fix to the overall problem that was Sedric Torren. Hope he rots in hell!

7. King of Fools

Thankfully with all the questions and concerns I have with Enne, Levi, and the Shadow Game, the series continues in “King of Fools”, Book 2 of The Shadow Game.


As always, thank you for reading. I would love to hear from you so feel free to contact me or comment below. If you would like to support this blog and/or my paintings please become my patron.

Be Authentic. Be Unique. Be You.

Book Review: 10 Grand Things about GIRLS LIKE US by Rachel Lloyd

Girls Like Us: Fighting for a World Where Girls are Not for Sale, an Activist Finds Her Calling and Heals Herself

by Rachel Lloyd

Nikki’s Rating: 10 out of 10

Summary: A thorough look at the child sex industry told by Rachel Lloyd, a young woman who was also a victim of commercial sex exploitation in her teens. Now dedicated to helping other young girls escape “the life,” Rachel started the groundbreaking nonprofit organization: GEMS, Girls Educational and Mentoring Services. A memoir that highlights Rachel’s story as well as pieces of the stories from young trafficked girls and women Rachel has worked with.

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10 Grand Things about GIRLS LIKE US by Rachel Lloyd

(May Contain Spoilers)

1. Educational

Through my job, being a state certified peer sexual assault counselor, and multiple trainings, I’m familiar with commercial sex trafficing but as with all important issues, there is always more to learn. Girls Like Us was full of important information as far as how many children are considered at risk of being a potential victim, what factors make a child more at risk, and really looks at what societal factors come into play as the commercial sex industry does not operate in a vacuum. All points are backed up by research, which are listed in “Notes”, as well as Lloyd’s own experience working in the field.

2. Powerful

Numbers and statistics are all well and good but nothing drives a point home than a story. Rachel Lloyd’s story alone was so powerful but Girls Like Us is also filled with tiny pieces of individual girl’s true stories and it is so amazing. What many of these girls go through is unimaginable to us but a regular occurrence in “the life.” Their will to survive is astounding and for those that escape, absolutely inspiring.

3. The Life

Each chapter in Girls Like Us is focused on different elements of “the life”. Lloyd takes the readers through what risks in the family and community make it more likely for a girl to become sexually exploited. She then gives us a glimpse on how recruitment happens as well as the roles of the pimps, johns, and even cops have in the girls’ lives. Lloyd also focuses on the positives of how girls can get out of the life and turn things around for themselves.

4. Choice

Another factor that Lloyd tackles in Girls Like Us is the erroneous belief that the girls “choose” the life. And while many girls are not kidnapped into the sex industry, to think that these girls consciously made a fully educated decision and had other options is utterly wrong.

“In order for a choice to be a legitimate construct, you’ve got to believe that (a) you actually have possible alternatives, and (b) you have the capacity to weigh these alternatives against one another and decide on the best avenue. Commercially sexually exploited and trafficked girls have neither — their choices are limited by their age, their family, their circumstances, and their inability to weigh one bad situation against another, given their developmental and emotional immaturity. Therefore the issue of choice has to be framed in three ways: age-appropriate responsibility, the type of choice, and the context of the choice.”

p. 78

5. Victimless

With thinking that these girls made a choice and choose to be a prostitute, prostitution is inaccurately viewed as a victimless crime.

“Prostitution is viewed as a victimless crime, a statement that denies the humanity or victimhood of the women and girls involved. Women in the sex industry, and therefore trafficked and sexually exploited girls, are not believed to be capable of being hurt or raped. In fact, rather than being seen as victims, they’re seen as willing participants in their own abuse and are often perceived as having ‘asked for it’.”

p. 126

This thinking prevents many sexually exploited girls and women from going to authorities to report being raped and/or abused and deters them from getting help to get out of the life.

6. Pimps

Pimps are able to hold so much power of the girls and women they control through several tactics. One of course is through violence, the girls learn to fear stepping out of line because of the physically painful consequences they will endure for any real or perceived mistake. But more manipulative and powerful than violence, pimps make sure to create a family dynamic, a place where the girls feel that they belong and mistake the abuse they sustain as love.

“The desire for a family is so strong and so overpowering for most children that it doesn’t take much to create that illusion. Pimps play upon this desire by creating a pseudo-family structure of girls who are your ‘wives-in-law’ headed up by a man you call Daddy. The lessons that girls have been taught, implicitly and explicitly, about family and relationship dynamics are all fuel for the exploiters’ fire. The greater their need for attention and love, the easier, it is to recruit them. The more unhealthy the patterns they’ve learned, the less a pimp needs to break down, the less he needs to teach them. Growing up with an alcoholic or drug-addicted parent sets the stage for caretaking and codependency patterns that are helpful in making girls feel responsible for taking care of their pimp. Violence in the home trains children to believe that abuse and aggression are normal expressions of love. Abandonment and neglect can create all types of attachment disorders that can be used to keep girls from ever leaving their exploiters.”

p. 56-57

7. Services

Manipulation and fear are the main tactics that keep girls and women in the life as well as the failing of society in believing that prostitution is a victimless crime that these girls and women choose to partake in. However, the other problem that can keep many girls and women in the life is the lack of services available to them, probably stemming from the false beliefs of the sex industry. As Lloyd shared in Girls Like Us, she worked with a girl who needed help and didn’t qualify for any because she wasn’t a drug addict. This girl went out and used drugs for the first time simply to be able to get into a program that would help her get out of the life. No one should be in this position! Services should already exist and be in place for any sexually exploited person to access.

8. Service Provider Costs

As someone who works in the mental health field and who has had the honor of hearing other people’s stories, I have to acknowledge that it takes a toll. While I love my work and am always willing to listen to another, I know that I trust people less than I used to, and that I understand too well the atrocities people are capable of doing to each other. Rachel Lloyd describes this so well:

“Mostly, though, it is just tough, sad work. I listen and listen to story after story of fatherless girls; motherless daughters; parents lost to the streets; drugs; prison; domestic violence turned murder; sexual abuse by an uncle, a cousin, a neighbor, a teacher; running away; being put in foster care… After a while, everywhere I look I see pain. Every teenage girl on the subway is a victim, or at least a potential victim. Every man, particularly middle-aged white men, the ones I most closely associated with johns, is a predator. I am both numb and oversensitive, overwhelmed by the need, the raw and desperate need of the girls, I am listening to and trying to help. I’m overdosing on the trauma of others”

p. 28

9. Service Provider Benefits

On the flip side of the toll that comes with being a service provider is all the benefits that come with it and Lloyd makes sure to mention these as well in Girls Like Us. One being able to find meaning and purpose in life and for the pain we have endured. Another huge benefit of being a service provider that Lloyd mentions is learning and healing through our work in helping others. I can attest to the fact that I have probably learned more from the people I have worked with than they will ever learn from me even though I am the “professional.”

10. Healing

Probably the most important topic in Girls Like Us is the one about healing. Lloyd explains that one of the crucial aspects is to be consistent with support and to be prepared that the person being served may relapse and return to their old habits. Do not abandon them or take it personally. Any human being struggles with change and we tend to want to stay in the familiar, no matter how awful it is. Other important factors in the healing process is having a safe place with basic necessities, a nonjudgmental peer support group to share their story, as well as ways to feel empowered, to foster resiliency and develop new skills.


As always, thank you for reading. I would love to hear from you so feel free to contact me or comment below. If you would like to support this blog and/or my paintings please become my patron.

Be Authentic. Be Unique. Be You.

Book Review: 7 Pleasant Things about PERFECT by Cecelia Ahern

“Perfect: A Novel”

Flawed #2

by Cecelia Ahern

Nikki’s Rating: 7 out of 10

Summary:  Deemed the most flawed person in the world, Celestine is now on the run from the Guild. As she comes to find that the others who witnessed Judge Crevan’s unsanctioned additional brand on her body have disappeared, Celestine comes to realize that the whole system may be corrupted and flawed. Now Celestine will stop at nothing to discredit Judge Crevan and bring the Guild down once and for all.

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7 Pleasant Things about PERFECT by Cecelia Ahern

(May Contain Spoilers)

1. Celestine’s Grandfather

Celestine’s Grandfather is the absolute coolest! Not only does he protect Celestine but he also solely hires flawed individuals for his workers in order to provide them with jobs and a place where they would be more accepted. Overall just a good man, I love the description Celestine gives him:

“He sees the beauty in everything, or perhaps it’s more that he thinks things that are unconventional and out of place are more beautiful than anything else.”

p. 4

2. The Lawyer

Raphael Angelo may be the first fictional lawyer that I’ve ever enjoyed. Eccentric but in an overall endearing way with his house of faux decor to look like humans had been used instead of animals since he doesn’t “believe in the murder of animals for food, fashion, or interior design” and his obsession with movies. Raphael is immensely intelligent and seems to want to help Celestine for the fact that it is the right thing to do. And I love that he embraces his uniqueness:

“’When you’re a teenager, what makes you different can be the worst thing in the world. The older you get, the more you realize that it’s your weapon, your armor, your strength. Your gift.’”

p. 150

3. Justice

“For someone to win, somebody else must lose. For that person to have won they must have lost something in the first place. The irony of justice is that the feelings that precede it and those which fruit from it are never fair and balanced. Not even justice itself is perfect.”

p. 328

And while this quote is absolutely true, I could not help to find glee in the humiliation and downfall of Mary May. I hated that woman more than Judge Craven and I was so happy to see her brought so low. I swear the woman had no redeeming qualities! Just a miserable human being.

4. Redemption

Between the two books for the Flawed series, Art made quite a few bad decisions. The first major one being not backing up Celestine on the bus in the first place but this decision could be understood as self-preservation; Art didn’t want to get in trouble and possibly deemed as flawed. However, his decision to actually join the Guild and become a Whistleblower was a huge betrayal. Thankfully, at the end of “Perfect” Art redeems himself by trying to save Celestine and actually taking a bullet for her. He has shown that he is a better man than his father by far.

5. Celestine and Carrick

While Celestine and Art have history and Art took a bullet for her, I’m happy Celestine ended up with Carrick in the end. Carrick and Celestine have endured so much together and were constantly backing each other as equals. For all the suffering and trauma they went through, I’m happy that they got their happily ever after together.

6. Mistakes

The ultimate lesson to take away from the Flawed series is that we make mistakes and we should not judge or condemn each other for them. This message is so important because in our current society we seem to be terrified of making mistakes. As Celestine says:

“‘Mistakes are nothing to be ashamed of. Mistakes teach us to take responsibility. They teach us what works and what doesn’t. We learn what we would do differently the next time, how we will be different, better, and wiser in the future. We are not just walking mistakes, we are human.’”

p. 258

7. Overall

“Perfect” had an overall satisfying conclusion with the Guild coming to an end, Mary May and Judge Craven being humiliated and disgraced, Art’s redemption and Carrick and Celestine coming back together in the end. The Flawed series as a whole really causes the reader to question the whole concept and need for perfection while also examining how we treat marginalized people. Overall a positive message and gratifying conclusion.


As always, thank you for reading. I would love to hear from you so feel free to contact me or comment below. If you would like to support this blog and/or my paintings please become my patron.

Be Authentic. Be Unique. Be You.

Book Review: 6 Fantastic Things about FLAWED by Cecelia Ahern (OwlCrate Book April 2016)

“Flawed”

Flawed #1

by Cecelia Ahern

Nikki’s Rating: 6 out of 10

Summary: Known as a model student, daughter, sister, and girlfriend, Celestine has always been fine with the status quo and never questioned her society. But when she helps an old man, the Guild arrests her. Celestine is facing imprisonment or worst of all, being found flawed and branded. Her whole life could be changed irrevocably from one mistake.

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6 Fantastic Things about FLAWED by Cecelia Ahern (OwlCrate Book April 2016)

(May Contain Spoilers)

1. Perfection

The society in Flawed is one that is based on perfection. Perfection not just in looks but also in behavior. Every decision made could be scrutinized and lead to being branded flawed. Once branded, you carry the brand for the rest of your life and live with more rules and restrictions than normal citizens. While this is a fictional society, it bears a lot of resemblance to our society especially with the preoccupation with being perfect in looks.

2. Marginalized People

Ahern really captures how we treat marginalized people. Treating them as less than human, purposefully avoiding them whenever possible. And then of course, turning a blind eye to any suffering or injustices that they endure.

“And why have I never thought of these things before? Because I never cared, that’s why… I have never spoken to one before. It’s not that we are not allowed to, it’s just that I wouldn’t know what to say. I step around them when they’re near me, I avoid their eye contact. I suppose I act like they don’t exist.”

p. 38-39

3. The Right Thing

The reason for Celestine’s arrest and the whole fiasco was because Celestine helped a man who was flawed. But ultimately it was the right thing to do and I love her character for doing this and then continuing to be brave and not lying about what happened in order to save herself. And while there were others who could have backed up Celestine, no one did. Not even her sister or boyfriend. And Ahern reminds us that for many, it comes down to self-preservation, which is understandable.

“I’ve learned that people aren’t cruel. Most people aren’t anyway… but people are strong on self-preservation. And if something doesn’t directly affect them, they don’t get involved.”

p. 234

4. Carrick and Celestine

Carrick and Celestine develop a bond that only happens between people who endure hardship together. Like soldiers on the battlefield, this bond to each other is one that cannot be wholly described or replicated because it is forged in an experience that cannot be duplicated. All I know is that I hope Carrick and Celestine find their way back to each other.

5. Flawed

Overall, “Flawed” has the message that we are not perfect and to expect any different would be to expect us to not be human. We will make mistakes, we shouldn’t have to pay for them our whole lives, and we shouldn’t condemn others for their mistakes. As Ahern so eloquently wrote in her “Acknowledgments”:

“If there’s one message that I hope this book portrays, it’s this: None of us are perfect. Let us not pretend that we are. Let us not be afraid that we’re not. Let us not label others and pretend we are not the same. Let us all know that to be human is to be flawed, and let us learn from every mistake made so we don’t make them again.”

p. 324

6. Perfect

As Celestine is on the run from the Guild and desperately trying to find Carrick, her story continues in “Perfect”.


As always, thank you for reading. I would love to hear from you so feel free to contact me or comment below. If you would like to support this blog and/or my paintings please become my patron.

Be Authentic. Be Unique. Be You.

Book Review: 6 Sensual Things about STORM’S HEART by Thea Harrison

“Storm’s Heart”

Elder Races #2

by Thea Harrison

Nikki’s Rating: 6 out of 10

Summary: Niniane is on the run as she comes to realize that there are many people who don’t want her to take her rightful place as the Dark Fae queen. Hot on her tail is Tiago, the head of a Wry army and a fearsome thunderbird. As they clash trying to navigate the precarious political climate of the Dark Fae, they discover a deep passion and love for each other. But the Dark Fae and the other demesnes will never allow the Dark Fae queen and a Wyr to be together. Niniane will have to choose, her crown or her heart.

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6 Sensual Things about STORM’S HEART by Thea Harrison

(May Contain Spoilers)

1. Supernatural

The Elder Races series as a whole caught my attention due to all the supernatural beings all existing alongside humans. “Storm’s Heart” was fun due to it featuring Tiago, who is Wyr, specifically a thunderbird, and Niniane, who is a Dark Fae. We got to see some Dark Fae politics, culture, and how their demesne fits in with the world at large.

2. Niniane

Niniane is a cute, petite faerie that is beloved by most people who come across her. Filled with lots of spunk and sass, she is a girl after my own heart with her love of make-up, pretty clothes, accessories, and comfort while tolerating minimal bullshit and dancing to the beat of her own drum. She is a fun character and I’m a huge fan.

3. Hottness

Thea Harrison knows how to write romance and “Storm’s Heart” features scenes that are dripping with sexual tension. Once Tiago and Niniane give into their desires, the chemistry is off the charts and provide us with some seriously hot sex scenes!

4. Banter

One of my favorite dynamics between Tiago and Niniane was their banter. The constant bickering and shit talking had me laughing out loud and provided some comic relief to serious and sad situations. Niniane’s sassiness is absolutely hilarious and Tiago usually deserves a tongue lashing!

5. Overall

“Storm’s Heart” was an enjoyable read overall. The politics and the mystery of the attempts on Niniane’s life kept me intrigued while wanting Tiago and Niniane to find their happily ever after really kept me engaged. Happily their much deserved ending took place and Niniane has taken her throne with Tiago watching over her.

6. Serpent’s Kiss

I am totally curious and intrigued by Carling as she appears to be an utter bitch vampire queen and thankfully Thea Harrison’s Elder Races continues in Book 3, “Serpent’s Kiss” which has Carling featured as a main character.


As always, thank you for reading. I would love to hear from you so feel free to contact me or comment below. If you would like to support this blog and/or my paintings please become my patron.

Be Authentic. Be Unique. Be You.

Book Review: 8 Impressive Things about IMAGINE ME by Tahereh Mafi

“Imagine Me”

Shatter Me #6

by Tahereh Mafi

Nikki’s Rating: 8 out of 10

Summary: Ella Sommers and Juliette Ferrars are wiped from her mind and forgotten. In her place, a powerful soldier to The Reestablishment awakens and is fully loyal to Anderson. Juliette knows nothing of Warner, Kenji, or her life with Omega Point. But Warner will never give up on her. He is willing to take on his father and the other supreme commanders, the world itself if that’s what it takes. Warner will bring Juliette back, or die trying.

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8 Impressive Things about IMAGINE ME by Tahereh Mafi

(May Contain Spoilers)

1. Pacing

As with all the books in the Shatter Me series, “Imagine Me” had fantastic pacing. There was plenty of action and suspense that kept me apprehensive and engaged. I had a hard time putting the book down because I absolutely NEEDED to know what was going to happen next. “Imagine Me” also included opportunities for characters to grow and for readers to get to know them better.

2. Kenji

Kenji of course is a beloved character and “Imagine Me” really allowed him and Warner to bond in a way that they never had before. With their shared goal of wanting to save Juliette, regardless of the danger, they were able to find common ground and actually get to know one another without the interference of Juliette trying to force them together. It was essential for Warner to have another person in his life who cared about him beyond just Juliette.

3. Children of Monsters

One of the things that I really enjoyed about the Shatter Me series is that the children of the supreme commanders weren’t monstrous like their horrible parents. On the contrary, they were all victims of their parents in many ways. And they chose to be something different, regardless of what their parents wanted, which is never an easy feat.

4. Cycle of Abuse

While I could not truly give a shit about what Anderson had to endure in his life, the tiny glimpse we see of his upbringing clearly paints the picture of the cycle of abuse. His mother abused him, he abused his children, and his children definitely ended up with some issues. While none of this excuses any bad behavior, it shows how damaging even one abusive person is. Thankfully Adam and Warner were able to consciously decide they didn’t want to be like their father but they both have some serious emotional scars from the abuse they suffered.

5. Death All Around

Juliette ripping her mother’s heart out of her chest was so fucking satisfying, that woman was an absolute crazy bitch! And thankfully she wasn’t the only one to die. All the supreme commanders were dead by the end of “Imagine Me.” While they each deserved a much more slow, humiliating, and agonizing death for what they did to the world, I’m just happy that they are gone.

6. Warner and Juliette

Warner’s devotion and love for Juliette knows no bounds! Their shared history of falling in love over and over. Being there for each other when no one else in the world was. Showing kindness, compassion, understanding, and acceptance when their own parents were too cruel to. Juliette and Warner truly have an unbreakable bond that is absolutely heart wrenchingly beautiful!

7. Emmaline

Emmaline is finally at peace. Used and abused by her parents and in constant turmoil, Emmaline needed death to escape the agony of her life. And while it was sad that death was her only respite, she got to leave in the hands of her sister, loved, cherished, and taken out on her own terms. Bittersweet.

8. Happy Ending

I could cry from the happily ever after Juliette finally got with Warner in the end. I was extremely worried that he would lose his life in his quest to bring her back. These two characters have been through so much, I don’t think I could have handled them not being together at the end of the Shatter Me series. So I cannot express my gratitude to Mafi that she ended “Imagine Me” on a positive note with Warner and Juliette getting married and Juliette holding a puppy for the first time in her life with no fear of hurting it or those around her.


As always, thank you for reading. I would love to hear from you so feel free to contact me or comment below. If you would like to support this blog and/or my paintings please become my patron.

Be Authentic. Be Unique. Be You.

Book Review: 7 Dynamic Things about DEFY ME by Tahereh Mafi

“Defy Me”

Shatter Me #5

by Tahereh Mafi

Nikki’s Rating: 7 out of 10

Summary: Juliette’s time as supreme commander of North America comes to a screeching halt. As she awakens in a place that is hauntingly familiar and yet forgotten, she comes to know the devastating reality of her past and how evil The Reestablishment truly is. Without Juliette and Warner, Kenji and the rest of the Omega Point gang are forced to trust the children of the other supreme commanders and hope they can get to Juliette and Warner before it’s too late.

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7 Dynamic Things about DEFY ME by Tahereh Mafi

(May Contain Spoilers)

1. The Past

I about lost it when I read about Warner and Juliette’s past! Over and over again they gravitated towards each other. Like finding your soulmate in every reincarnation, no matter how many times their memories were wiped, Warner and Juliette always developed a strong attachment. They were meant for each other and it’s so beautiful.

2. Kenji

Kenji is probably one of the best supporting characters in a book series, ever! The ridiculousness that comes out of his mouth makes him hilarious but his overall loyalty, kindness, and bravery make him an outstanding character. “Defy Me” includes chapters from his point of view which I loved but more importantly, another character sees the worth in him romantically and he finally has a girlfriend of sorts. The man deserves some happiness and romance.

3. The Reestablishment

Just when I thought The Reestablishment couldn’t get more sinister, Mafi had to introduce the twisted parents of Juliette. Ugh, they suck so much! Regardless, the twist that the desolate, destroyed world is actually a worldwide illusion was pretty clever. And of course, as Emma is dying, The Reestablishment plans to use Juliette’s powers to destroy the world for real.

4. Emma

Being Juliette’s long lost sister, it makes total sense that Emma is immensely powerful and just as rebellious. And although her life has been nothing but tragic and painful, I’m glad that she is still a good person regardless of the trauma she has been through. I was happy that she could distinguish who her enemies were and that she did not punish Juliette out of jealousy for having an actual life. Emma realized that Juliette is her salvation and working together they can take down The Reestablishment.

5. Anderson

While I am no way really happy that this terrible man is alive, I am impressed. The fucker has a healing factor now and is therefore really incredibly hard to kill. I suggest beheading and hope Warner or Adam get the honor of killing him for good!

6. Celebrations

“Defy Me” had some serious heartwarming moments, one being the celebration of Warner’s birthday. Having the whole gang come together to make better birthday memories for Warner and to show him that he was included and that he was cared about and loved was beyond heartwarming. Another beautiful moment was obviously the engagement of Juliette and Warner. And I’m so glad Warner didn’t listen to Kenji for once! While many girls would enjoy a man making a huge show when they propose, I couldn’t imagine Juliette wanting that or needing it, which totally makes sense to me. My own husband, who I’ve been happily married to for almost 5 years, asked me out of the blue one day at home. No ring, no extravagant dinner, no public displays, just asked me to marry him and I wouldn’t have it any other way.

7. Imagine Me

Juliette and Warner’s story continues in Book 6 of the Shatter Me series, “Imagine Me” and I’m hoping it will end with a happily ever after wedding ceremony. Is it bad that I’m really concerned that one of them is going to heartbreakingly die in order to save the other? Like this is a legitimate concern. So apprehensive to read “Imagine Me” but I must satisfy my curiosity!


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