[Epub] ❧ Girls of Paper and Fire Author Natasha Ngan – Anguillais.us

Girls of Paper and FireUncover A Riveting Story Of Palace Intrigue Set In A Sumptuous Asian Inspired Fantasy World In The Breakout YA Novel That Publisher S Weekly Calls Elegant And Adrenaline Soaked A New York Times Bestseller On The Indie Next Kid S List Goodreads Best Books Of November BN Top Books Of NovemberPublisher S Weekly Books Of The Week Hypable Most Anticipated YA Book Releases In This Richly Developed Fantasy, Lei Is A Member Of The Paper Caste, The Lowest And Most Persecuted Class Of People In Ikhara She Lives In A Remote Village With Her Father, Where The Decade Old Trauma Of Watching Her Mother Snatched By Royal Guards For An Unknown Fate Still Haunts Her Now, The Guards Are Back And This Time It S Lei They Re After The Girl With The Golden Eyes Whose Rud Beauty Has Piqued The King S InterestOver Weeks Of Training In The Opulent But Oppressive Palace, Lei And Eight Other Girls Learns The Skills And Charm That Befit A King S Consort There, She Does The Unthinkable She Falls In Love Her Forbidden Romance Becomes Enmeshed With An Explosive Plot That Threatens Her World S Entire Way Of Life Lei, Still The Wide Eyed Country Girl At Heart, Must Decide How Far She S Willing To Go For Justice And Revenge

[Epub] ❧ Girls of Paper and Fire Author Natasha Ngan – Anguillais.us
  • Paperback
  • 416 pages
  • Girls of Paper and Fire
  • Natasha Ngan
  • 14 December 2017
  • 0316561355

    10 thoughts on “[Epub] ❧ Girls of Paper and Fire Author Natasha Ngan – Anguillais.us


  1. says:

    Sappho s voice Sweet mother, I cannot weave, slender Aphrodite has overcome me with longing for a secret warrior assassin goddess and her rebel girlfriend So, what s this book about In Ikhara, the world our protagonist Lei inhabits, there are three castes Moon, the reigning caste that is entirely demon Paper, the downtrodden caste that is wholly human and Steel, who are endowed with both demon and human elements Every year, the Moon caste s king selects eight Paper Girls as his concubine Sappho s voice Sweet mother, I cannot weave, slender Aphrodite has overcome me with longing for a secret warrior assassin goddess and her rebel girlfriend So, what s this book about In Ikhara, the world our protagonist Lei inhabits, there are three castes Moon, the reigning caste that is entirely demon Paper, the downtrodden caste that is wholly human and Steel, who are endowed with both demon and human elements Every year, the Moon caste s king selects eight Paper Girls as his concubines but perhapsaptly termed sex slaves When Lei is dragged from her small village to be a Paper Girl, the only reassuring talisman against her new jarring reality is finding her mother who has been similarly taken years before Now fear and the threat of sexual violence is a tight undercurrent through everything, but it was tempered with hope and relief when Lei meets Wren, another Paper Girl with a feline grace and many unspoken secrets.Soon, Lei learns that she has a whole new set of fears to discover the ones that come with loving someone you re very likely to loseWe might be Paper Girls, easily torn and written upon The very title we re given suggests that we are blank, waiting to be filled But what the Demon King and his court do not understand is that paper is flammable And there is a fire catching among usNgan deftly navigates her way through a thorny and twisted tale of morality, anguish, and trauma taking elements of Asian mythology, her experience growing up in Malaysia and her own imagination and pasting them into a beautifully rendered fantastical collage that has representation in sorely needed ways The setting is an enthralling blend of beauty and danger, anchored in intricate worldbuilding, imbued with color and texture and scent and drenched in evocative mythology Lei and Wren have a friendship forged in the heat of a battle against their abusers which later engenders a feverish romance, born of mutual respect Seriously, the sheer amount of sapphic content in this book warmed the hollows inside my heartHer kisses heal the parts of me that the King broke They tell me You are strong, Lei You are beautiful You are mine And, always, most important You are yoursThe only quibbles I can point out are plot swirls that occasionally lagged and the fact that it took me some time to really warm up to Lei as I was oftentimesintrigued by side characters than I was by her It also felt like the book seemed to know exactly where it wanted to end up but completely insouciant about how it got there and as a result, some scenes took on a numbing sameness and the story felt padded with repetition almost as often as it felt luminous and satisfying.With all that aside, there are many aspects of the book that I think demand deeper examination Ngan weaves in powerful themes of self empowerment and self love, identity and self discovery, while fervently denouncing classism, homophobia, and the objectifying of women.Ngan delicately carves out, with the precision of a scalpel, all the subtlest ways rapists are abetted by cultures in which women are viewed as only partial people, the table scraps of men, where women s bodies are intensely politicized, where social hierarchies outrageously privilege certain members because they re considered untouchable, and where there s a presumption of male authority and righteousness, and with equal accuracy, Ngan also hammers home the politics of power that uses rape as a tool.Ikhara is a society where misogynist sadists flourish because misogyny is justified as tradition, maleness comes with a presumption of violence and women are perceived as public property and less deserving of basic rights than men This book prompts you to not only think about rape through the moral lens of lust, depravity and shame but as a violence that is born from power and not desire The Moon king uses fear as his medium and his position of power as an enabler to carry out this act of violence not because of any uncontrollable urges of sexual desire, but because wrenching these girls from their homes and raping them makes him feel power over them and ultimately over their castes The images are haunting, the topic is difficult, but sadly all too believable and too reminiscent of our real world.This tradition of Paper Girls has generated decades of women hurtling headlong in silence, no reflection, no echo, no self because rapists were handed license to operate and keep their victims silent, ashamed and without justice But as these women s paths cross during the most vicious and traumatizing event in their lives, they will learn from and teach each other all the shades and colors of strength and endurance The greatest feat of strength that s ever been witnessed was the one these women performed every day continuing to live for the sake of themselves and their families, when it would be so much easier to stop, and it s that miracle of hope and rebellion that was the start of a chain of miracles that will eventually see them through their pain.The focus on recovering from trauma, forging a functional self out of the wreckage and reclaiming your body, too, is powerful And over the course of this book, we see these women grow even further into deep, multi dimensional characters who were not beholden to the story of the men around them, but rather had their own agency on full display.Girl of Paper and Fire is the story of survivors of sexual violence who are reclaiming their own narrative and learning that they re not strong in spite of anything but powerful because of everything They re whole as they are and complete unto each other and so very worthy of loveWhen the world denies you choices, you make your ownHighly recommended TW violence, sexual abuse and animal cruelty wishlist blog twitter tumblr


  2. says:

    We might be Paper Girls, easily torn and written upon The very title we re given suggests that we are blank, waiting to be filled But what the Demon King and his court do not understand is that paper is flammable.And there is a fire catching among us. I mean, I think I knew this had My Exact Vibes from the first time I heard of it so perhaps it s not the biggest shock in the world that I really, really liked this, but still this book deserves the world, and you should DEFINITELY read it We might be Paper Girls, easily torn and written upon The very title we re given suggests that we are blank, waiting to be filled But what the Demon King and his court do not understand is that paper is flammable.And there is a fire catching among us. I mean, I think I knew this had My Exact Vibes from the first time I heard of it so perhaps it s not the biggest shock in the world that I really, really liked this, but still this book deserves the world, and you should DEFINITELY read it Mayand Juand I kept calling this the angsty gaysians book, but I feel like I should give a proper blurb Girls of Paper and Fire follows two Chinese Malaysian girls, Lei and Wren, who meet and fall in love while essentially working as sex slaves under a demon king.Something that really stands out to me about this is the gorgeous setting depictions and, in general, sensuous writing This is shockingly gorgeous And though Girls of Paper and Fire did have occasional issues with off pacing like there was a littletime spent on a generic Getting To The Palace beginning than I wanted I think this book thrives so well off tension that in general it s fairly unputdownable With a starkly horrifying environment, it s hard not to connect with Lei.I like, by the way, how this book uses the existence of homophobia and misogyny as tools for developing its characters and narrative, rather than as plot devices The focus here is on two queer women, rather than on the characters perpetrating or benefiting from this discrimination The main problem I d mention for this book is that for much of the story, Lei doesn t have a perceptible goal she is trying to survive, but she doesn t feel as motivated as she should This is perhaps why the last hundred pages are so good once that one tiny issue is fixed, the entire book gains initiative and becomes what Natasha Ngan has the talent to write a fantastic, gripping, gorgeously written, and emotional dark fairy tale But then again it s so good So completely badass and gorgeous.The characters are so great I love Lei as a heroine she s struggling so much but such a good soul I love that she s allowed to be terrified, and desperate for escape, and desperate to do somethingbut also unsure if she can actually fight And Wren is such a good love interest, supportive and caring but with her own shit to deal with I also loved several side characters Blue and Aiko are both excellent, and I can t wait to seeout of them.Oh, and the romance Oh my god, the romance here is so delightfully angsty No one s paying attention to us, their focus all on the stage, and I need her right now, need the familiar warmth of her hands to ground me, to calm my already frantic heart from spiraling so far out of control that it breaks free and me with it. I came for a slow burn, two girls against the world type story, and for once in my damn life I got it There is so much tension, so much of a slow burn between these two characters, and I was living for it.So, here we are, and I loved this, and I can t wait for book two I hope it s just as starkly horrifying and beautiful TW sexual assault.Blog Goodreads Twitter Youtube


  3. says:

    We might be Paper Girls, easily torn and written upon The very title we re given suggests that we are blank, waiting to be filled But what the Demon King and his court do not understand is that paper is flammable.And there is a fire catching among us. This was SO MUCH MORE than I expected Girls of Paper and Fire is a lush fantasy story that goes to some extremely dark places The light amid this darkness is the central f f romance that evolves gradually and naturally, never overtaking the p We might be Paper Girls, easily torn and written upon The very title we re given suggests that we are blank, waiting to be filled But what the Demon King and his court do not understand is that paper is flammable.And there is a fire catching among us. This was SO MUCH MORE than I expected Girls of Paper and Fire is a lush fantasy story that goes to some extremely dark places The light amid this darkness is the central f f romance that evolves gradually and naturally, never overtaking the political machinations and drama Ngan has done a number of exciting things here Her fantasy world is heavily inspired by her Malaysian upbringing, and the gorgeous descriptions really bring the setting to life It stuns me how vast the palace is Not just a palace really, but a city a labyrinth of streets, courtyards, and gardens, like the veins and arteries flowing through a giant creature with the King nestled at its core, its own living, beating heart. There s echoes of The Belles in here, though I d argue that this is a much nastier read In this book, girls from the Paper caste the lowest caste and fully human are stolen away by the royal soldiers to become the King s consorts They are trained in obedience and seduction, waiting every day to be called to his majesty s rooms Lei, with her strange golden eyes, is now one of these girls.Ngan does a great job of creating the dynamics of friendship and jealousy between the girls They are all fascinating, diverse and very different in both background and attitude to their circumstances Some of the girls are eager to please the King others would do anything not to be there Aoki is an especially interesting character and some moments with her broke my heart Even the typical mean girl is developed into somethingover the course of the story.There s also some really great sex positivity and a frank portrayal of desire and passion In a situation where the girls consent has never been sought, consensual unions are celebrated The main one being the central romance between Lei and Wren, which even a cold hearted cynic like me was able to fall in love with.And, of course, behind it all a bigger political story is taking place Lei and the other Paper girls get dragged into a dangerous plot that puts many lives at risk, even the lives of Lei s family It all arrives at a dramatic, pulse pounding climax and ends with the promise ofhorrors to come I can t wait Content warning for rape and multiple attempted rapes the former happens off page but the before and after is very disturbing , one instance of animal cruelty non graphic and slavery, including sexual slavery.Blog Facebook Twitter Instagram Youtube


  4. says:

    ARC provided by Hachette in exchange for an honest review.We might be Paper Girls, easily torn and written upon The very title we re given suggests that we are blank, waiting to be filled But what the Demon King and his court do not understand is that paper is flammable And there is a fire catching among usOnce I heard that this was an ownvoices Asian inspired fantasy world where two girls, who are forced to be concubines to a demon king, try to overcome it all and fall in love, I kne ARC provided by Hachette in exchange for an honest review.We might be Paper Girls, easily torn and written upon The very title we re given suggests that we are blank, waiting to be filled But what the Demon King and his court do not understand is that paper is flammable And there is a fire catching among usOnce I heard that this was an ownvoices Asian inspired fantasy world where two girls, who are forced to be concubines to a demon king, try to overcome it all and fall in love, I knew this was going to be a book for me But friends, I fell in loveGirls of Paper and Fire will make it onto my best books of 2018 list come December In this world, there are castes that people are born into which determine your social standing in the world Paper Humans Lowest class They look just like you and me Steel Half human, half demon Middle class Look mostly human but will have a little bit of an animal attribute Moon Demons Highest class Take on animal characteristicsDemon men can take what they want Our homes Our lives Our bodiesAnd each year, the demon King takes eight paper girls to be concubines some willing, others completely unwillingly And these eight girls will live an entire year in the palace, living somewhat in the life a luxury, waiting to see if the King will call one of them to his chamber every night And the impression they leave on the king will impact how their future goes after the year is up And no girl can afford to make a mistake, because they will be punished in unthinkable ways This story stars a young girl named Lei, whose mother was ripped out of her life and taken by the king seven years ago She has since grown up in a remote village with her father But even though Lei is Paper caste, she has golden demon eyes that make her very unforgettable So, palace guards eventually come for her And this year, Lei gets taken to become one of the King s paper girlsBut perhaps the gods have forgotten us, or grown bored with our small corner of the kingdom Because here I am, about to share the last thing I d ever want to offer the King MyselfTo me, this is a book about rape, and rape culture, and how rape survivors will reclaim their bodies in all the different ways And how rape is always about power, never about sex This book is about how rapists can be charming, good looking, friendly, and have the entire world at their feet It doesn t matter This is a book about reclaiming your body after someone forcibly takes it And how everyone heals differently at their own pace.Content and trigger warnings for rape, attempted rape, sexual assault, slavery, sex trafficking, abandonment, heavy grief depictions, loss of a loved one, murder, abduction, captivity, torture, branding, violence, a forced medical health exam, physical abuse, graphic animal death, and war themes Please use caution, this book can get pretty dark at times Make sure you are in the right headspaceOrder was restored the only way the King knew how BloodshedThis book is also about finding love for others but also for yourself And it is about finding your worth and knowing that you are worthy of love regardless of what has happened to you in your life The world can be such an ugly place, but unconditional love still hides within it, and it s so very beautiful And love is always worth not only a risk, but it s worth everything And the f f romance in this One of my favorites of all time It s slow burn, but I say that in the best way possible Without a question, my biggest ship of 2018 is within this book s pagesHer kisses heal the parts of me that the King broke They tell me You are strong, Lei You are beautiful You are mine And, always, most important You are yoursAnd not only is the story amazing Natasha Ngan s writing is out of the world I was completely captivated by the world and felt completely teleported into this world And the masterpiece that she created So damn impressive My amazing friend, May let me in on some of Natasha s inspirations with the paper girls and the regions they are from, and I m just blown away It s so impressive the amount of work and love this author truly put into this story This is seriously a work of art, and it just made me appreciate and love this world, characters, and book evenOverall, this meant so much to me From the messages and the themes, to just me seeing queer, Asian girls falling in love against a world that wants to tear them apart, it meant everything Yet, this book does end on a massive cliffhanger, so be warned But it has hyped me so much to see what Natasha will do next And book two will for sure be one of my most anticipated releases of 2019 But in the meantime, I can t wait for the rest of the world to fall in love with the start of this amazing storyOur kingdom believes words have power That the characters of our language can bless or curse a lifeBlog Instagram Twitter Tumblr Youtube Twitch The quotes above were taken from an ARC and are subject to change upon publication.Dude read with Em at Runaway with Dream Thieves


  5. says:

    Instagram Twitter FacebookPinterest I am so cheesed off right now that I m having trouble putting my fury to virtual paper This is CHILDREN OF BLOOD AND BONE all over again People were singing this book s praises for being diverse fantasy featuring not just a heroine of color, but a heroine of color who was a lesbian How could this be bad I asked myself The advance reviews were great, and almost unanimously positive It was an F F romance set in a fantasyscape based Instagram Twitter FacebookPinterest I am so cheesed off right now that I m having trouble putting my fury to virtual paper This is CHILDREN OF BLOOD AND BONE all over again People were singing this book s praises for being diverse fantasy featuring not just a heroine of color, but a heroine of color who was a lesbian How could this be bad I asked myself The advance reviews were great, and almost unanimously positive It was an F F romance set in a fantasyscape based off Malaysia, one of the most culturally diverse places ever It sounded so freaking good, and I could not wait for it But it was not good Not even close.Problem 1 The heroine is a raging Mary Sue.Per the synopsis, every year, the Demon King chooses eight human girls to be his teenage concubines gross This year, they ve decided to go with Nine Special Specialton herself, Lei.Lei is cast in the vein of every Mary Sue ever, although for some reason, people are adoring and forgiving her for her utter self aggrandizing blandness in this book where they condemned Bella Swan for it She has special eyes Even though she s fully human, she has gold eyes the color of a demon s, and if that doesn t scream, THIS IS MY ORIGINAL CHARACTER, MOONLIGHT SONATA RAVEN EMORY RAINBOW at you, that s probably because you ve writtenthan your fair share of Moonlight Sonata Raven Emory Rainbows.She has one character flaw she s clumsy For the first 50% of the book she s tripping over everything I think it s supposed to be endearing Since when does having too many inner ear infections as a child make you better than the rest of the human I mean, Paper race She s also shooting her mouth off all the time, and people seem to love her for that too And her particular brand of sarcasm is basically the teenage equivalent of a toddler stomping his foot and saying NO Oh, wow, so brave So defiant Like, please This dumb papery ass little shit wouldn t know Brave if she saw it at Disney.Her actual character flaw she s a hypocrite She is constantly railing against the Demon King, and yes, he s an awful guy But then right after he nearly sexually assaults her, she immediately turns around and says Haven t we waited long enough when kissing Wren and Wren asks her to wait It s like, oh, I m sorry, I didn t realize that consent was solely a heterosexual concept When she says WAIT, you wait, b tch This becomes a pattern, with love that is definitely insta and super possessive Lei clearly considers Wren hers before their relationship is even consummated, and despite being a feisty, sarcastic, papery little shit, apparently this is her trademark and no one is allowed to do it, because she is mad AF when she finds out Wren is keeping secrets from her.Lest you say, Nenia, wait, you read bodice rippers, and this seems kind of like cherry picking when compared to the bodice ripping that goes on in what you read This is true, and I appreciate your perception and strawman reasoning The difference between bodice rippers and this book is that bodice rippers don t purport to be empowering, woman loving feminist literary masterworks, and were not advertised to me as such If there s one thing I can t stand, it s hypocrisy You can write garbage and I will read it gladly, but tell me it s art or classy sh t, and I will come after you TheEndProblem 2 The writing is not goodThe phrase I grit back a glower at this literally appeared in this book, in case you need an example of why the writing was not good This is written in a style that I call Basic B tch YA The language is simple, the dialogue wooden, and there s a few nice quotes thrown in for people to put on IG or Pinterest, and trick people like me into reading the book thinking it s going to be good This is the literary equivalent of a movie trailer where the movie is so bad, the trailer is basically a reel of the only salvageable moments from the film because otherwise nobody would want to see it.Also, there was so much purring and shoulder rolling that if I didn t know better, I would have thought that Sarah J Maas had waltzed in and seized control of the narrative Lord knows, Bellei Swan is just as annoying as Celery Saltine thin The two of them should start a bowling league Problem 3 The world building was not good Lush fantasy my sizeable rear end Moon caste, Paper caste, Steel caste Despite a few made up insults to show scorn at those beneath them, I did not feel like this caste system was really adequately displayed, especially since we didn t see much of the Steel caste at all While reading about these anthropomorphic animal beastmans, I kept thinking longingly of Inuyasha, which I thought did a really great job of showing just how disposable humans were, and how annoyingly superior and classist demons were Just look at how lesser demons like Inuyasha and Naraku were treated.Second, why is the Demon King still in charge if everyone hates him and he can t produce heirs What was the dealio with the rebellion that led him taking the Paper castes to bed in the first place Why weren t the Xia mentioned earlier so they didn t seem like a Deus ex Mach xia later on The world building in this book was garbage, and the idea of the teenage concubines just seemed like a salacious hook to lure people in with the promise of reading something illicit like me cough The magical powers and totalitarian regime were so badly done, and made me think longingly of Avatar The Last Airbender, where there was cohesion in the Asian world building, as well as the magic and culture and oppression tactics of those who were in power.Problem 4 The hype was a lie for me I m very angry at myself for falling for the hype of this book it s like I never learn my lesson I really want to support PoC authors and books with PoCs, but I will never do that with a book that I, personally, think is bad YMMV, and if this is the book to make you feel appreciated, validated, or acknowledged, then that is wonderful But to me, it felt like just another watered down YA fantasy.


  6. says:

    I don t want an easy life I want a meaningful one. I don t think I can ever describe just how much this book means to me, but as soon as I d heard that this book actually existed, I knew I needed it in my life And I m so happy that it s getting all the hype, because this book is gorgeous and beautiful and a story we all need to read and listen to.In this world called Ikhara, there are three castes, and a Demon King who rules them all There s Paper the lowest caste, fully human, with no an I don t want an easy life I want a meaningful one. I don t think I can ever describe just how much this book means to me, but as soon as I d heard that this book actually existed, I knew I needed it in my life And I m so happy that it s getting all the hype, because this book is gorgeous and beautiful and a story we all need to read and listen to.In this world called Ikhara, there are three castes, and a Demon King who rules them all There s Paper the lowest caste, fully human, with no animal demon features Steel humans with partial animal demon features and finally Moon the highest caste, fully demon, with complete animal demon features Each year, the Demon King rips eight Paper girls from their homes and takes them to be his concubines Everyone tells the girls it is an honor to be chosen for this life some believe that, some do not But no one has ever stood up to the King before without facing cruel punishment.Lei has everything to fear in going to the palace Her mother was taken similarly years ago, and no matter the amount of people saying that it s a privilege to be chosen as a Paper girl and she should be grateful for it, she still dreads meeting the King, living in his palace, and leaving behind her father Still, she readies herself to submit in order to survive a sad reflection of what happens too often in today s world until she meets another Paper girl named Wren, who gives her hope of a better life.Lei s story takes some time to build up in the beginning at first, since her motivations and goals as a character aren t quite clear yet I ll completely admit that I wasn t as engaged in the beginning as I wish I could ve been But once that drive was initiated and the plot got moving, it was so easy to get into the book and be swept up in this unforgettably brutal yet beautiful storyOur lives here are defined by others, every decision made for us, every turn of fate pushed by the hands of others But you stood up and said noEven though you knew what it would cost youOne of the most beautiful things about this book is the way it tackles oppression It s a story all about oppression, in social castes classes, appearance, and most of all, sexual abuse and rape It is so accurately portrayed that rape is about power, and control, and entitlement, and never about sex or desire The Demon King feels entitled to the girls he seizes, and what he takes from them he takes because it makes him feel power over them It s not hard to believe and scary how closely resembling this is to our world today.But it s not only a story of oppression, but about overcoming it too One of the most powerful things a survivor can do is to step up and tell their truth, and this is a story of survivors finding the voice to speak up for themselves It s about knowing your worth and reclaiming it when someone forces you to think you have none It s about knowing that you are worththan the beliefs of people who follow power without recognizing or choosing to see its horrors It s about knowing that no matter what, you are worth everything the fight, the right to your own self, and the love.And speaking of love, the love that Lei and Wren have for each other is so beautiful and so pure and so delightfully sapphic It s slow burn, soft, and everything I wanted Their relationship means so much to me, as a sapphic Asian myself, but even , these two queer Asian girls fall in love in a world that will do anything to wrench them apart Seeing them fight for each other, reclaim themselves with each other, and become stronger because of each other it means the world Her kisses heal the part of me that the King broke They tell me You are strong, Lei You are beautiful And, always, most important, you are yours. Of course, the themes and messages and romance have a huge hand in how beautiful this book is, but there s also the fact that this writing is just gorgeous, and the world that Ngan has crafted is absolutely stunning Reading this was like reading a love letter to Asian culture the food, the clothing, the people It was like returning to home, to a place of comfort, to family in Thailand and all the best Thai food.Though this book is a beautiful must read in my eyes, it is absolutely necessary that you be prepared for the heavy content Huge huge content trigger warning for rape, sexual abuse, physical abuse, and violence in general It s a quite heavy book to get through, and I can recall at least one scene that was graphic and very difficult for me to read I recommend this book with my whole heart but please make sure you are in the right headspace More content warnings at the end of this review Also, if you re reading the ARC, content warning for aro acephobic language The author has confirmed it will be removed from the final copy which is great , but it is still in the ARC so take care When the world denies you choices, you make your own. Despite the heaviness of this novel, and the slightly slow start, this is without a doubt one of my favorite books of the year and a book I will never cease to stop recommending The story of two queer Asian girls unwilling to let anything get in between them means the world andto me, and the book as a whole is a gorgeous voice for all Asians, queer girls, and those who keep fighting even when everyone tries to push them downrep entirely Asian cast including Southeast Asian inspired, East Asian inspired, and South Asian inspired ethnicities , sapphic Asian female MC, sapphic Asian female LI ownvoices for Asian, queer, and sexual abuse survivor rep content warnings rape, attempted rape, sexual abuse, physical abuse, death, abduction, torture, violence, loss of loved one, scenes with blood, grief depictions buddy read with my least gayvorite person Thank you to Jimmy Patterson Books for sending me an advance copy in exchange for an honest review This did not affect my opinions in any way.All quotes were taken from an unfinished copy and may differ in final publication.


  7. says:

    Update TheI think about this book, theI think an accurate rating would be 3 stars, considering that I don t feel enticed enough to read the sequel This is another case of the concept and subversion of tropes are great, but the characters and relationships are not developed well enough for me to be attached What I appreciate most about this book is that it takes the standard YA fantasy narrative of an ordinary yet special girl being wed to a powerful king and makes it a story a Update TheI think about this book, theI think an accurate rating would be 3 stars, considering that I don t feel enticed enough to read the sequel This is another case of the concept and subversion of tropes are great, but the characters and relationships are not developed well enough for me to be attached What I appreciate most about this book is that it takes the standard YA fantasy narrative of an ordinary yet special girl being wed to a powerful king and makes it a story about female empowerment instead These plots often romanticize the relationship between the girl and the king, but Ngan makes his abuse and problematic behavior clear and integral to the conflict of the story, while highlighting a F F relationship as the one you should be rooting for The writing is descriptive and lovely, the pacing is good, and the world building is a unique blend of Malaysian and Chinese culture that mirrors Ngan s biracial identity Despite the F F relationship being underdeveloped and instalovey, and the main character being a generic ordinary girl turned special protagonist, these other aspects make it a standout from other YA fantasy books and worth boosting


  8. says:

    In this fantasy world, every year, the violent and oppressive Demon King the strongest of a caste of people marked by their animal like appearances takes eight Paper Girls of the plain, human Paper caste to become his concubines Lei never expected to become one of those girls, but evenshocking was the twist of fate she met upon her arrival at the palace her unstoppable and desperate fall into a forbidden love with another Paper Girl. When I first heard the synopsis for this book, I was In this fantasy world, every year, the violent and oppressive Demon King the strongest of a caste of people marked by their animal like appearances takes eight Paper Girls of the plain, human Paper caste to become his concubines Lei never expected to become one of those girls, but evenshocking was the twist of fate she met upon her arrival at the palace her unstoppable and desperate fall into a forbidden love with another Paper Girl. When I first heard the synopsis for this book, I was sold in an instant An own voice Asian fantasy story with queer girls, demons and half demons, strong women overcoming forced slavery, and did I mention queer girls this immediately shot to the top of my most anticipated releases of 2018 list L I K E S Perhaps the gods have forgotten us, or grown bored with our small corner of the kingdom Because here I am, about to share the last thing I d ever want to offer the King.Myself There s a lot to love in Girls First, there s the fantasy world and the classes of demons and humans, which were so fascinating I know this isn t the popular opinion on this note, but I was a teen right in the middle of the internet s anthro phase and had so many positive memories of that time, so when I realized the demon or Moon caste were basically humanized forms of animals as in people with horns, furred skin, etc , I was flooded with nostalgia in the best way The word itself home is a blade in my gut It s a call, a song One I can t answer any I was also impressed by how in depth much of the world building is we re given a substantial amount of back story throughout the novel, and rather than dumping it all on us in the beginning, there s constantlyto learn, even 300 pages in This story has a level of complexity that you don t see often in debut authors, and I enjoyed that so much When the world denies you choices, you make your own The last major positive I want to mention is the entire character design of Wren, one of the other Paper Girls Despite not being the main character, she was the star of the show for me she felt the most complex and three dimensional, and I consistently enjoyed every single scene she was present for D I S L I K E S I m cast in the shadow of that night with the King The memory of it hovers close, a constant presence at the edge of my consciousness, like moon shimmer on the surface of a lake Unfortunately, there were also a few things that caused Girls to not live up to the hype I d created for it in my own head First, while the world building is great, the narrative voice didn t click well with me I found it very difficult to immerse myself in any of the scenes, and thought the descriptions of most characters and settings were too general It doesn t matter how beautiful the cage is It s still a prison I also struggled with most of the characters, especially Lei Wren is the only character who felt truly complex to me, but everyone else struck me as predictable, and all of the Paper Girls besides Wren and Aoki felt over simplified and predictable There are a handful of lesser characters in the story that I enjoyed fine, like Zelle and Kenzo, but the amount of time we get to spend with them is practically nothing at all I don t want an easy life I want a meaningful one Finally and this is probablyof a me issue than the book, so I m not really counting off points for it no matter how much I wanted to root for the romance or the plotting of revenge and justice, I never could find it in myself to really care very much I m usually one of the most emotional readers you could ever meet, but the writing simply wasn t capable of evoking any genuine feelings in me most of the time, so when I finished it, I found myself feeling a little empty and not particularly concerned over what would happen in the coming sequel F I N A L THOUGHTS All in all, Girls of Paper and Fire is a difficult book for me to rate and review My enjoyment of the book puts it at a 3, but the important issues tackled and the depth of world building make it a solid 4.5 ultimately, I settled on 4 5 stars I m not entirely certain right now that I ll be eagerly awaiting the sequel, but Natasha Ngan showed so much promise in this especially with it being her first novel that I m definitely very keen on seeing how she improves and where she goes next in her career UPDATE For some reason, I thought this was her debut It s not, which actually makes me a bit less optimistic about the sequel, but we ll see how it goes RECOMMENDING TO If you re a fantasy reader who enjoys high fantasy and beautifully done queer rep, I absolutely recommend picking up a copy of Girls of Paper and Fire. Despite the fact that it wasn t a perfect 10 10 for me, I know it s the kind of story I will be recommending to friends for years to come because I think this book did so many things right at the end of the day.Content warnings for rape, abuse, murder, oppression, slut shaming, violence All quotes come from an advance copy and may not match the final release Thank you so much to Jimmy Patterson Books for providing me with this ARC in exchange for an honest review


  9. says:

    Yes, I m totally biased But guys, this really is the book of my heart As I say in my author note The story within these pages is a work of fiction, but also a work of love The world I created in Ikhara has been heavily inspired by my experiences growing up in Malaysia, a country with a dense mix of cultures, and also as a person of mixed ethnicity As such, it s a bit of a hybrid like me I feel extremely lucky to come from a multicultural home, and it has shaped and will forever continue to Yes, I m totally biased But guys, this really is the book of my heart As I say in my author note The story within these pages is a work of fiction, but also a work of love The world I created in Ikhara has been heavily inspired by my experiences growing up in Malaysia, a country with a dense mix of cultures, and also as a person of mixed ethnicity As such, it s a bit of a hybrid like me I feel extremely lucky to come from a multicultural home, and it has shaped and will forever continue to shape my influences and perspectives.The conception of this story also comes from a personal, deep yearning fordiverse novels, particularly in YA I believe it s important for everyone, but especially young people, to see themselves in the stories they consume to feel acceptance and kinship To be inspired for their own stories, real and imagined Even magical worlds have their roots in our own, and I would love to seebooks reflecting the rich variety of our individual realities.Set in an Asian inspired fantasy world where a Demon King takes human girls for concubines, this is the story of the forbidden love between two of the girls and how far they are willing to fight for their freedom and each other It is a story about love and friendship, about trauma and despair It is a story about finding hope in the most hopeless of times More than anything, it is a story about female oppression and empowerment The girls in the book each discover their own forms of power and expression in a world that would give them none, and I am so proud of their strength I cannot wait for you to meet them 3


  10. says:

    Just No Doesn t matter why I liked Wren, that s about it Almost everyone else can kiss my arse It would have to be my beautiful pink sprayed edges book Mel October Fairyloot Pink Sprayed Edges Yessss Although, I think it s next month that the US and Canada are not getting sprayed edges Only other countries and of course that made me mad because y all know I m addicted to sprayed edges D Click on link below the pic to see the goods LINK TO THE GOODSThis was also the Owlcrate N Just No Doesn t matter why I liked Wren, that s about it Almost everyone else can kiss my arse It would have to be my beautiful pink sprayed edges book Mel October Fairyloot Pink Sprayed Edges Yessss Although, I think it s next month that the US and Canada are not getting sprayed edges Only other countries and of course that made me mad because y all know I m addicted to sprayed edges D Click on link below the pic to see the goods LINK TO THE GOODSThis was also the Owlcrate November book I m tired of getting the same books from both boxes I love the Fairyloot book better with the pink edges But here is a link to the goodies that were in the Owlcrate box with it OWLCRATE GOODIES

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