The Last Namsara – Kristen Ciccarelli

30846371Dragons, danger, romance; The Last Namsara is everything I love about fantasy fiction.

Following a traumatic dragon attack in her childhood, Asha becomes the Iskari – the King’s fiercest dragon-slayer. Feared by everyone (except her family), it’s a lonely life that leaves her feeling more like a weapon than a girl, and with a bleak future married to her father’s cruel, violent commandant, Asha has little to lose. Until the king offers her a way out: kill the First Dragon, and win freedom from her betrothed.

First things first, I totally loved this book. For starters, dragons. I love dragons. The dragons in this are both fierce and friendly (very How to Train Your Dragon-esk) – what more could you want? Second, Asha is a great main character. She’s strong, sassy and deeply troubled – the vital characteristics of any fantasy hero. Third, the relationship between Asha and Torwin is adorable and a delight to watch unfold.

The Last Namsara is well-written and engaging, although Ciccarelli’s style was at times a little too careful. You could tell that it’s a debut novel; I would love to see her take more risks and use a little more variety in her language.

I enjoyed this book from page 1, right up to the very end. I’m really looking forward to book #2. (Also, the cover is stunning).

I received a copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

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T5W – Books From Before You Joined The Online Book Community


Top 5 Wednesday is a weekly meme run by Thoughts on Tomes. (You can find the Goodreads group for it here) This week’s topic is Favourite Books From Before You Joined The Online Book Community. For me, this means my favourite books from before starting my blog and joining Goodreads. Here we go!

  1. Good Omens by Terry Pratchett and Neil Gaiman – I gush about this book every time anyone asks me about my favourites, so I won’t say too much now. It’s a work of absolute genius. Just read it.good-omens-2
  2. The Call of the Wild by Jack London – I’ve loved this book since I was (quite) little. I think it might be the only book I’ve ever enjoyed written from the point-of-view of an animal, and Buck is still one of my favourite book-animals. This book has so much depth as well as drama and
  3. Ella Enchanted by Gail Carson Levine – I was attracted to this book for obvious reasons (in case you hadn’t realised, my name is Ella) and I do usually enjoy almost any fairytale retelling. This one was particularly good. Do not let the film put you off – I hated it. Anne Hathaway was a terrible casting choice and they changed the story so much! The book is well worth a read.858361
  4. Angelfall by Susan Ee – My favourite paranormal YA book ever. I loved Twilight, The Mortal Instruments and The Hunger Games, but Angelfall takes the crown in my opinion. The heroine is sassy and loveable, the hero isn’t abusive and the side characters are a delight, but because it’s never been made into a film it doesn’t get the recognition it deserves.15863832.jpg
  5. The Woodcutter by Kate Danley – This is a blend of fairytales, told from the point-of-view of a minor but integral character: the woodcutter. It’s complicated but well thought out, and one of the best works of imagination I’ve read.16128504

A few of these are childhood favourites and, to be honest, since joining the online book community my favourites haven’t changed very much. What are your favourite books (from before or since finding your way onto WordPress)?