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Star Daughter by Shveta Thakrar // Night Markets, Star Courts and Desi goodness

GOODREADS // AMAZON // BOOK DEPOSITORY The daughter of a star and a mortal, Sheetal is used to keeping secrets. Pretending to be "normal." But when an accidental flare of her starfire puts her human father in the hospital, Sheetal needs a full star's help to heal him. A star like her mother, who returned to the sky long ago. Sheetal's quest to save her father will take her to a celestial court of shining wonders and dark shadows, where she must take the stage as her family's champion in a competition to decide the next ruling house of the heavens--and win, or risk never returning to Earth at all. This gorgeously imagined YA debut blends shades of Neil Gaiman's Stardust and a breathtaking landscape of Hindu mythology into a radiant contemporary fantasy.   ( A huge thank you to the  HOV Tours  and HarperTeen for the eARC and the opportunity to be a part of this blog tour.  ~When a book sees you~      Yes I am absolutely going to s

Bone Crier's Moon by Kathryn Purdie // Ferrying the dead, female friendships and star-crossed lovers

Bone ​Criers have a sacred duty. They alone can keep the dead from preying on the living. But their power to ferry the spirits of the dead into goddess Elara’s Night Heavens or Tyrus’s Underworld comes from sacrifice. The gods demand a promise of dedication. And that promise comes at the cost of the Bone Criers’ one true love.

Ailesse has been prepared since birth to become the matriarch of the Bone Criers, a mysterious famille of women who use strengths drawn from animal bones to ferry dead souls. But first she must complete her rite of passage and kill the boy she’s also destined to love.

Bastien’s father was slain by a Bone Crier and he’s been seeking revenge ever since. Yet when he finally captures one, his vengeance will have to wait. Ailesse’s ritual has begun and now their fates are entwined—in life and in death.

Sabine has never had the stomach for the Bone Criers’ work. But when her best friend Ailesse is taken captive, Sabine will do whatever it takes to save her, even if it means defying their traditions—and their matriarch—to break the bond between Ailesse and Bastien. Before they all die.

 (A huge thank you to the FFBC tours and the publisher for the eARC and the opportunity to be a part of this blog tour. Click on the tour banner above to view the tour schedule) (US Giveaway at the end of the post)

(+ favourite quotes)

     I literally came across this book because of the gorgeous Charlie Bowater cover. I saw it and was immediately smitten, much like an amouré when he hears the siren song of a Leuress. But I'm getting ahead of myself so let's start at the beginning! (Of course I made a list. Did anyone actually expect me to not make a list?)


~Female friendship~ 

     Look I just pine for well written female friendships okay? The friendship between Ailesse and Sabine was something I cherished even if their interactions are somewhat less in this book. they reminded me very much of Safi and Iseult from The Witchlands series (another great series you ought to read). I loved the sisterly affection between the two and the fact that despite being best friends, they are very different from each other; but this does not take away from the connection they share. I especially loved Sabine. Her character arc was my favourite and I feel she was the character that grew the most through the story. I can't wait to see more of her in book 2.
“I’m not weak. I’m not a coward. I’m tired of everyone believing I am. I’m tired of believing it myself.”

~Enemies to lovers trope~

     I think all us bookdragons can agree that this is one trope we all love. Ailesse and Bastien gave me a very witch-witch hunter vibe and I loved the banter and angst. I wish there had been more humor but of course the feeling of tension throughout the book did not give much chance for that. But I sure enjoyed the enemies to lovers AND star-crossed lovers thing they had going for them. But I wish we had seen them grow more. Their relationship arc wasn't as well fleshed out as Sabine's character arc.
Tu ne me manque pas. Je ne te manque pas. It means ‘You’re not missing from me. I’m not missing from you’ 
“The gods have nothing to do with us. We don’t have to play their games.”

~Great secondary characters~

     Marcel is a treasure. Marcel and Jules are siblings and friends- more like found family- of Bastien's. And the author really makes them stand out. Marcel is scholarly, gentle and just so endearing. Jules is headstrong, stubborn and nowhere as gentle as her brother but she grew on me. BUT I SHALL PROTECC MARCEL OKAY? He's just so precious and I liked how most times it seemed he was the only one with a working brain.

~The worldbuilding and myths~

     I'm a sucker for good worldbuilding. I mean, who isn't. I love how the author went into detail about the Leuress myths and how she developed a believable world with it own culture and folktales. A part that stood out to me was how she created various versions of the same myth. Ailesse has been taught one version of it since she was a child, Marcel tell her the various versions he's read and heard from people. THAT is believable because there is hardly ever a myth that everyone in the world agrees upon. Kathryn Purdie is a pro at wonderful worldbuilding for sure. I believe she drew inspirationg from some French myths too.
“Without the Leurress,” she says, “the dead would wander the land of the living. Their unmoored souls would wreak havoc on the mortals we are sworn to protect. Our task is to keep the balance between both worlds, the natural and unnatural, and therefore it is our privilege to be born a Leurress and our great honor to become Ferriers.

~Complex relationships~

     The relationship between the two best friends is complex in itself. The care a lot about each other but it's complicated by the fact that Ailesse's mother seems to be too hard on her and prefers Sabine over her. It is further complicated by the fact that Sabine feels inferior to her friend at many a times.

     Then there is the relationship between Bastien and his friends that is complicated by Jules's feelings for him and Bastien's confusion over what he wants.

     I love how the author explores all these relationships in a very realistic manner and it adds a tangible feel to every character.

~Bone Crier's moon might seem a enemies to lovers romance at first glace but it is a lot more than that; it's a story of betrayal, revenge, friendship and family that is fast paced and will easily pull readers in. ~


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Are you excited for this book? What is your favourite romance trope? Tell me in the comments below!