Little Wren and the Big Forest (The Legends of the First Empire 0.6), by Michael J. Sullivan
Book Review / December 16, 2019

Little Wren and the Big Forest by Michael J. Sullivan My rating: 2 of 5 stars This was, unfortunately, a quick and painful read. We’re observing how Wren enters the big – forbidden and foreboding – forest despite her entire family having disappeared in it before. Even worse: She goes into the forest knowing full well it’s a trap and, “being eight years old and small for her age” she has absolutely nothing to expect but being lost forever herself. As if that wasn’t enough already, the story feels forced, a lacklustre piece that’s even gory in part which is something I’m definitely not used to when it comes to Michael’s books and other short stories. Ultimately, it ends with a whimper of a solution that is as forgettable as the entire thing. Just stay away from this short story and choose from Michael’s other works which are simply marvellous! View all my reviews

The Secret Chapter (The Invisible Library #6), by Genevieve Cogman
Book Review / December 13, 2019

The Secret Chapter by Genevieve Cogman My rating: 5 of 5 stars “Stories matter – telling them, sharing them, preserving them, changing them, learning from them, and escaping with and through them. We learn about ourselves and the world that we live in through fiction just as much as through facts. Empathy, perception and understanding are never wasted. All libraries are a gateway into other worlds, including the past – and the future.” It’s been a while since I’ve read a book that featured a passage good enough for an opening quote. And the above passage is just from the Cogman’s acknowledgements at the very beginning. Fortunately, the implicit promise given holds true for this sixth instalment of the series. Originally, I intended to give this book four stars, maybe mention it’s more like 4.5 but when I thought about what’s missing in this book for the fifth full star, I couldn’t really think of anything. Yes, there’s not much “philosophical depth” to be found in “The Secret Chapter” but when I contemplated that, I realised I’m perfectly fine with that – the entire series is a lot of fun and yet gives some food for thought and sometimes that’s…