Review: BLINK

Review: BLINK

Rating: 2.5 out of 5.

*I received a copy from the publisher via Netgalley in return for an honest review. This in no way affected my opinion of the book.*

Wren Booker can barely remember when she was discovered covered in blood on the streets of New York. But years later, when she finds a cryptic website supposedly streaming multiple strange rooms, she is haunted by forgotten memories. Desperate to find the truth, she hunts down the website source and breaks into a camera-filled maze building that isn’t as abandoned as Wren once thought. 

I was enticed by the cover and art style and finished reading it all in a (literal) blink of an eye. Wren has followed her obsession with her past into a world of uncountable surveillance cameras and feeling that someone – or something – is watching her. The art style and illustration really carry this entire story – it encapsulates Wren’s dark, obsessive nature and the labyrinth in which she finds herself trapped. 

If anything, I was disappointed in the found-footage aspect of the graphic novel since it sets up readers for an entirely different story. Found footage assumes we are witnessing Wren’s story as if it were discovered film or recordings, but instead, it’s about what Wren finds within the sinister building. Don’t get me wrong, I enjoyed reading the story, but it was a shame to realise the direction wasn’t going in the way it was promoted. 

Blink was almost perfect. It starts with a great premise, fantastic art and panels—an urban tale about the dangers of surveillance. Unfortunately, the execution is disappointing and loses steam towards the end, leaving behind a ghost of what could’ve been. 


Review: The Moonlight Blade (Blog Tour)

Review: The Moonlight Blade (Blog Tour)

I received this book for free from Hear Our Voices Book Tours in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

I promised my mother I would never come to Bato-Ko…and yet here I am.

Narra Jal is one of the cursed, cast aside her whole life, considered unlucky. But with her mother’s life on the line, she will return to the city where she was born to face the trials: a grueling, bloodthirsty series of challenges designed to weed out the weak, the greedy, and the foolish. Trials to select the next ruler of Tigang.

Narra has nothing. No weapons. No training. No magic. No real chance of leaving with her life. Just her fierce grit and a refusal to accept the destiny she’s been handed. Even the intense, dark-eyed Guardian she feels a strangely electric connection with cannot help her. Narra is on her own. But she’ll show everyone what the unlucky can do.

Let the bloodbath begin.

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Every ten years, the people of Tigang welcome a new ruler. Volunteers from the city must survive the Sundo, a multitude of challenges designed to test if they can prove themselves strong enough to rule. To return to Bato-ko means breaking her promise to her mother, but Narra Jal has no choice. She doesn’t want to lead; she just wants to know why her mother was arrested under mysterious circumstances and hopes that she can free her from prison by winning. But there’s a reason why her mother forbade her from ever returning, and if she wishes to save her family, she must delve deep into her past. 

Fun fact: I actually had the opportunity to read this manuscript as an intern at Entangled, so it pleases me to be a part of the blog tour to gush about a great story once again. 

The Moonlight Blade is a gripping and intense young adult fantasy set in a world where magic is both feared and revered. Narra impersonates her older sister to partake in the Sundo and quickly learns that her family history within the city is much deeper than she ever anticipated, spanning even into her past reincarnations and placing her into the path of the current Astar, an immortal turned mortal, who was sent to advise her nation’s people. Not only that, but she has also gained the attention of Astar’s right-hand man, Teloh, who is hiding secrets of his own. As Narra and Teloh’s path intertwines, they face unimaginable danger.

What I loved the most about this novel are the characters that just come right off the page. Narra worries that she is unlike her sister, who lights up the room, but she is a formidable person in her own right, gaining the respect of her competitors with her sharp wit and tongue. The way her relationship grows with her peers is what got me hooked right away. The supporting cast is well-developed, with complex and relatable motivations that add depth to the story. (Dayen and Virian, I will fight for you both, say the word, and I’ll be there.)

Barbosa has created a rich and detailed world full of complex magic and mystery that spans years of history to create a captivating and believable story. The story is wonderfully written, with vivid descriptions that bring the world of Tigang to life. For fans of Sabaa Tahir and Renée Ahdieh, The Moonlight Blade is a release that should be on your radar. 

I also wanted to note that this outfit was based on my own research before I realised that Tessa Barbosa had posted a pre-order benefit tweet which showed a more accurate rendition of Narra’s outfit that I could’ve used as a reference (Still cursing myself for not checking, haha)

You can watch the timelapse video here! I also live-streamed this on Twitch (the VOD is unfortunately unavailable due to video error – I have a love-hate relationship with OBS), but I’m often live on the weekdays playing games (I am currently streaming horizon zero dawn) or drawing on the weekend, so come check it out!


Tessa Barbosa loved books so much that after spending one to many late nights up reading, and eating distractedly at the table, her parents banned her from reading. It didn’t work. Tessa stuffed books under her mattress, hid them in her sweaters, and many poor paperbacks met their ruin in a hot bath.

But writing novels didn’t happen for a long time. She majored in computer science, and minored in the fine and performing arts. After graduation, she switched from a career in software development to technical writing, because words were always her first love. Now she writes software help by day, and fantasy novels by night. Her debut YA Fantasy novel THE MOONLIGHT BLADE, will be out in 2023 from Entangled Teen. What better way to live in stories than to write them?


Monthly Rewind: February 2023

Monthly Rewind: February 2023


  • The Candles are Burning – I did a full review of the Amazon Into Shadow Kindle collection a few weeks ago. This was the final book I had got around to reading, and I was really surprised by how much I enjoyed this one, considering that a lot of the short stories in this collection are disappointing. (Not you, Six Deaths, this isn’t about you)
  • A Witch’s Guide to Fake Dating a Demon – We all need an Ozroth in our lives who is willing to fight our shitty family members. 8/10. Would’ve been 10/10 if it wasn’t for that annoying third-act miscommunication trope I hate. But I did draw fanart because Mariel is hilarious.
  • Blink – A creepy graphic novel about a woman discovering a cryptic website streaming an abandoned house which reminds her of her forgotten past. It’s great, but the publisher did the book a huge disservice by marketing it as found footage when the art doesn’t present itself like that but rather what the main character discovers.
  • The Moonlight Blade – I read this manuscript back when I was an intern at Entangled, and I love the newly edited version all the same! I’m a part of the blog tour later this month, so expect a review and fanart!!


Outside of my usual stream time, I like to also do impromptu drawing streams, which are usually a lot more low-key and low-energy. These streams are usually at around 11pm whenever I can’t sleep, so I draw until I feel sleepy. And during these streams, I work on fanart or new PNG outfits. My newest PNG model outfit was one I’d been planning for a long time, which was a clown outfit. Funnily enough, this is the first time I’m showing it since I’ll be using this outfit tomorrow (March 1st) for my Genshin stream while I pull for Dehya. (Yes, this is me shamelessly promoting my twitch – come over, it’s fun, and I’m usually live around 6pm GMT)


A feature section to highlight my favourite posts from my fellow bloggers that were posted this month. 

That’s it for this month! Tell me what went on in YOUR life this month! What sort of things was important for you this month? New obsessions? New TV shows? Or book? Any new song recs (I’m always open to new music!)? Best books you read this month?

Review: A Witch’s Guide to Fake Dating a Demon

Review: A Witch’s Guide to Fake Dating a Demon

Rating: 4 out of 5.

*I received a copy from the publisher via Netgalley in return for an honest review. This in no way affected my opinion of the book.*

Prophesied to be the most powerful witch, Mariel Spark feels far from such a glorious title, especially as a descendant of the famed Spark family. She prefers the comfort of her kitchen and greenhouse over the magic in her veins. When a summon goes wrong, and instead of flour to bake, Mariel accidentally called a demon, and to make matters worse, unknowingly enters a soul bargain with him. 

I love randomly requesting books on Netgalley because I find gems like this. A Witch’s Guide to Fake Dating a Demon was an utter delight. Never thought I would find myself so heavily invested in the life of a witch and demon fake dating to hide the fact that she summoned a demon onto Earth from her overbearing mother. 

Mariel is a charming woman with a whole lot of love to go around, but to her family, it means nothing if she can’t wield the magic within her to a more respectable use than tending to her garden. Her mother is a textbook narcissist who is convinced that Mariel simply isn’t trying hard enough and threatens to cut off financial support for her education if Mariel doesn’t improve soon. And as she is in the middle of baking, Mariel tries her luck to summon flour but summons a demon instead. In comes, Ozroth (or Oz), who is in a similar situation where he must regain the respect of the demon elders, which means taking Mariel’s soul back with him. A witch’s soul is their magic, so Mariel isn’t planning on parting with it so quickly. So he’s stuck on Earth until he can figure out a way to get it from her. But that also means he can’t leave her side, which is becomes a problem explaining his presence to her mother. Rather than admit her spellcasting failure, Mariel blurts out that Oz is actually her boyfriend. As Mariel struggles to combat an ongoing development that will threaten the wildlife in her town, Oz has a limited time to make a deal, and as the two struggle to maintain their fake relationship, a real one happens between them. 

I always adore an excellent reluctant friends-to-lovers story, and Mariel and Oz’s chemistry was hilarious and heart-warming. Who wouldn’t want a fake demon boyfriend who defends you against your shitty family? Although it falls victim to the typical third-act miscommunication trope, which definitely could’ve been done better, Mariel and Oz are hilarious. I found myself laughing through all their interactions. Considering Mariel summoned one of the worst demons you could call upon, she keeps her head straight despite Oz’s cheeky attempts to take her soul; both are equally loveable. 

A Witch’s Guide is Hawley’s debut, and I was immensely impressed at her ability to craft hilarious and relatable inner monologues for both Mariel and Oz. An entertaining paranormal romance which makes me super excited to read its sequel, which surprisingly follows a secondary character I had not expected. 

I drew fanart too!!!! This scene was hilarious, and I knew I had to draw it immediately!

Continue reading “Review: A Witch’s Guide to Fake Dating a Demon”

Series Review: Into Shadow Collection

Series Review: Into Shadow Collection

In this collection, seven fantasy authors release their stories in collaboration with Amazon as part of their first Original Stories collection. 

The Garden by Tomi Adeyemi 

Years after her mother disappeared in search of a mythical place called the Garden, Yuliana is determined to uncover the truth. 

This was one of the weakest stories in the collection. The Garden follows Yuliana travelling in Brazil with a guide to a mythical garden, hoping to find what her mother couldn’t. It sounds promising, except all we’re given is a tourist misbehaving, as the writer tries to convince you otherwise. This story was meant for a bigger stage, but even within these pages, Adeyemi couldn’t convince me. I like the concept of alternating prose and poetry, but what does it say when the prose reads better than the poetry? 

Persephone by Lev Gossman

Young Persephone hides within herself, especially since her father’s disappearance five years ago, but when the school bullies go too far, she discovers a power that might be the key to everything. 

Without giving too much of the plot away, I was surprised by the turn this story took. But Persephone’s voice drips with the stereotypical behaviour of a Disney Channel teen protagonist. I found the plot rather intriguing, but the tone of voice felt dejected and separate from the girl we see on the page. 

The Six Deaths of the Saint by Alix E. Harrow 

Spared from death to fulfil a destiny, can the girl who became a weapon find her worth under the watchful eyes of the Prince? 

You have probably already seen this short story makes its rounds through social media, and for once, a story lives up to the hype. Six Deaths is a beautiful short story, speaking directly into the desire of the girl who has been told repeatedly to sacrifice everything for the empire’s good. Harrow evokes every emotion possible in such a short amount of words; what a bitter-sweet tale for a girl who deserves so much more. 

“I would rather love a coward than mourn a legend.” It was 2 am, and I was on the floor. 

Continue reading “Series Review: Into Shadow Collection”

Review: This is How You Fall in Love

Review: This is How You Fall in Love

Rating: 1 out of 5.

*I received a copy from the publisher via Netgalley in return for an honest review. This in no way affected my opinion of the book.*

Zara has always wanted her own love story. A real kind of love. But when her best friend Adnan accidentally tells everyone they’re dating to hide his actual girlfriend, Zara doesn’t know what to do. The news of her relationship appears to lessen the arguments between her parents, so maybe this isn’t all that bad. But how long can they pretend to be in a relationship without straining Adnan’s real one, and can they keep up pretences in front of their friends without ruining everything?

Yeah, this wasn’t very pleasant. I should’ve known I would feel this way after Adnan became an absolute prick towards Zara. By the time we reached the end of this story, it felt like nothing had been added to the overall plot and characters. Even as best friends or fake lovers, Zara and Adnan held no chemistry whatsoever.

The bulk of the story hinges on Zara and Adnan’s relationship; they constantly remind each other that they are the best of friends and nothing else matters because the strength of their friendship should trump all. Adnan insists that despite his new relationship, his friendship with Zara will not falter, but then he continues treating Zara terribly for the entire story. He fails to consider her feelings while he gets the best of both worlds; he gets the girl and gains the adoration of his family for finally “dating” Zara. And what does Zara get? Despite convincing herself that this fake dating would distract her parents from arguing, nothing substantial actually happens. They still fight, upsetting Zara, which defeats the purpose of what she is supposed to be benefiting from this relationship. Adnan doesn’t even do much to keep his end of the bargain; he continues to publicly flirt with his girlfriend in situations where their plans would definitely get them caught; Zara will then have to swoop in to correct the issue, causing arguments between the three of them.

This book would have done well to undergo some further brainstorming. A lot is going on, but nothing really sticks out. Zara and Adnan don’t respect each other, their “plan” lacks any action, and there is just so much going on in the background that the story falters because it doesn’t know where to focus its plot. On top of their fake plan and familial issues, there is also a side plot of Zara’s friend who wants to make a documentary of her new relationship and an anonymous Instagram gossip account that is strangely forgotten for most of the novel.

There’s not much else I can say about this book. Poor Zara. She deserves a lot better.